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Miracle Creek By Angie Kim

July 19, 2019
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A wonderful multi POV story!

I started this book and before the weekend was over, so was the book!

The premise is an oxygen tank of sorts explodes and the story bounces around POV while the court session is going on.

As a psychological thriller, you can imagine how the story unfolds.

Before the explosion, the owner/operated of the “miracle submarine” (named after its appearance) and his family had immigrated to the United States for their daughter’s educational future, although this caused a divide in the family, one felt heavily on Young, the mother/wife as she helps treat families with autistic children or a  myriad of other health issues…. Until one fateful day that everything went wrong.

Also, Young’s daughter, Mary’s seventeenth birthday.

As the story progresses and more people take the stand, lies are revealed and more lies told to cover those lies up….

A fascinating tale that will keep you reading until the last page!

Heroine

July 19, 2019
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Heroine by Mindy McGinnisheroine

 

A rather dark young adult book, but also a great read for any adult!

The main character, Micki, is a star softball player in high school, excited to start the season and praying to get a scholarship for college. Her best friend, also on the softball team, is as driven as Micki and it works well as a softball pitcher/catcher team.

This all changes with a car accident.

And then it gets worse.

The opening line is so dramatic, immediately pulling you into her world.

“I woke up an all of my friends are dead.”

 

Woah, right?

After the accident, she is given pain killers. But they run out and she found that she likes the high better than anything else.

 

Honestly, the story itself is good and the message is great… but I was disappointed overall. I suppose the general theme was a question of why one person can use pills fine and why others become addicted. (as the story compares Micki to her pitcher/sober friend) And why the pills lead to harder drugs, like heroin.

Micki has pins in her hip bone and while one the pills, over exerts herself….. and somehow manages to heal ahead of time and better than the doctors have thought possible….

This is where my interest waned.

As someone who has gone through physical therapy and deals with chronic pain, I can tell you it does not work that way.

So the story continues and Micki falls deeper and deeper into her addiction and lies. She steals from her parents and step mother, a recovering addict and new mother, lies to everyone she knows.

I was hoping the book would have been more about the tug between pain, the fear of pain and the fact relief comes in a pill. But that was my hope for it. The recovery and thoughts seemed too… contrived for me to feel immersed in the book.

The way it is written, it is a good what if? To open a dialog hopefully for both sides of the coin and give each a window to the other’s thoughts…. although I wish the author would have done some more research or talked to people to give it a more realistic sheer. Still a great read, although maybe have a happy book to read afterwards!

 

Rust & Stardust by T. Greenwood

May 15, 2019
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This is a crazy good book!

A fictionalized account of what (could have) happened in the true events of 1948, New Jersey that helped to inspire the characters of the scandalous Lolita book by Vladimir Nabokov.

It follows the separate strings of the kidnap victim, her mother with a pain condition that forces her to rely heavily on her naive but book smart daughter. The POV switches between many others deeply wounded by her kidnapping, Sally’s sister as well as her brother in law to give up a kaleidoscope style vision of what was happening at home with her gone at the same time as her terrifying venture across several states.

The author suggests brutal things, but leaves the thought hanging without the abrasive conclusion other author’s may have tried bringing it to a much darker level. The abuse is left unsaid it equally as chilling, guiding the narrative with a gentle hand to the gritty level but avoiding becoming obscene.

 

In a day and age of today, it is heartbreaking to think such terrible things had to happen in order for our society to learn from the mistakes we didn’t know where possible.

 

Baby Teeth by Zoje Stage

May 15, 2019
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5 Stars right away!

 

I absolutely adored this book! Featured around a seemingly perfect family unit, only the mother fears there is something wrong with her daughter, separate from the fact she refuses to speak or even tolerate her mother.

When her father comes home, the child is perfect and he chastises his wife for seeing her charm as annoying. doubt breeds between them until…. Well I’ll let you figure out what comes next!

A true page turner as the narrative flips between the daughter and mother…. contempt grows easier than love in small misunderstandings.

Raptor Red by Robert T. Bakker

May 10, 2019
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Red

 

Okay, I admit this is an older book, I recall listening to a cassette version of this one summer doing some sort of yard chore as a kid…. (so 15 or so years ago and it was well worn then)

And it has always stuck in my head. It was right around the time I first watched Jurassic Park and I loved it. I loved everything about it, the movie and later the book which made the dinosaurs so much more real to me, imaginable really. A point of view to imagine from their perspective.

The author actually worked on Jurassic Park!

So if you love books from the point of view of animals, you might love Raptor Red! She’s a loving and lovable raptor! A mighty female pinnacle of empowerment! The book follows Red as she goes through normal dinosaur things, hunting and such before tragedy strikes! She loses a mate and hunting partner and must find a new path of survival… One of the few books I have read multiple times!

5 Stars!

 

Alli

Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen

February 1, 2019

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A great, quick read! A comic artist of a few books and a blog, Sarah, is enjoyable to read even as she exposes her own anxieties and her struggle to accept it herself and relating to other people…. but mainly they are about her cat or poor time management skills.

 

It is truly a light-hearted comic I enjoyed over a cup of coffee! A quick read, but worth it’s time in laughs!

Her other book, Adulting is a Myth is equally as hilarious!

myth

 

sarah

I’ve read all three of her books and all were entertaining!

5 Stars!

Alli

History As They Saw It

February 1, 2019

history

 

Is exactly what it seems, a non fiction book of colored pictures, which adds a lot from the black and white originals.

Many iconic moments in history and various historical figures stand out. A series of pages and pictures of noble and even royal immigrants were photographed in their finery from their homelands was my personal favorite section of the book.

Each picture had a small description to give you a feel for the moment forever caught in that picture.

5 Stars!

 

Alli

Coyote Doggirl by Lisa Hanwalt

January 22, 2019

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It is an adult Graphic Novel by the main illustrator of the Netflix show “Bojack Horseman”, an animated, dark comedy show about an aging TV star struggling with life and addictions added on top of the general Hollywood drama.

This book has nothing in common with it other than the same type of animal-human illustrations. The book does have some dark moments but the ending was a generous dose of western whimsy.

An odd duck of a book, but don’t let that deter you from picking up!

It starts with the main character on horseback, escaping some shadowy “guys” following her. At this stage you don’t know if it is unjustified or if she had scorned them in some western way.

She mainly talks to her horse, Red along the way as she outruns her pursuers before they fire arrows upon her, separating her and Red (luckily unharmed in the attack). She is found by a native tribe and healed.

The theme of the story stems from her struggle with her own identity. Her natural instinct, the coyote part of her, fights for dominance over the domesticated dog part, hence her name, Coyote Doggirl.

A quick read but a deeper meaning than just a girl in the west.

The Veldt by Ray Bradbury

January 22, 2019

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Published in 1950, this is an all too real glimpse at our society that seems to stand with humanity as we continue.

The Veldt, itself, is a holographic room mainly for children so they can learn and grow and the core ideal in it’s creation seemed to be so children with psychotic tendencies could learn from the Veldt that they were wrong and grow from the experience.

The family we see have spoiled their children, but have they spoiled their children so much that they have corrupted their entirely? The house they built out of vanity and in the name of so-called progression (technology replacing human interaction and nurturing) literally does everything for them. The petty chores that no one ever wants to do, the cleaning up and even cooking and bathing all of the family members.

The wife, Lydia, doubts that she is as good a mother to the children because the house bathes them better than she can. In fact the house can do everything better than she feels she can herself. This is never truly proven as fact or simple parental insecurities however.

Things escalate as they often do beyond the parents control. The children are dependent on the Veldt, as it raised them and their parents are viewed as simply in the way. The parents confide in a friend whom urges them to leave on holiday immediately to recharge the children and the family as a whole.

 

I really enjoyed reading this book, it is quite short really but packed a powerful punch! It will keep floating around  long after you turned the last page!

 

The Elizas – Sara Shepard

August 25, 2018
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Elizas

 

I know Sara Shepard’s work through the popular show and Young Adult book series entitled Pretty Little Liars.

This is an adult book, completely separate from her previous novels, although it still has the air of the series in it.

The plot follows Eliza, a newly published author who is awaiting her book actually coming out. The chapters flip between her own life and that of her book. Eliza wakes up after a night of drinking to find herself hooked up to hospital machines. It is clear that her family is very concerned, but also unbelieving as her symptoms are identical to those of her brain tumor that had been dealt with previously in the year (or at least recently).

The book she has written is eerily similar to the things we know about her thus far, and through her book we learn more and more about Eliza.

It’s a thiller book without the gore, although she is quiet promiscuous at times, it’s a pretty tame book overall.

Personally, I couldn’t stand the main character, she was a good character, I think it’s more of the personality I clashed with. It made an interesting anti hero I thought for she wasn’t the villain in any other way than her own life, amid her drinking choices and continual drinking even knowing she should not. But what’s a character without some real life flaws? It made her seem real, which I loved.

The end is quiet the twist!

While the story and chapters continue, I found myself more drawn to the book version of Eliza, younger and not grown into herself yet. Being tugged in many different directions by her influential family member bulldozing her sister into conforming to her wishes constantly. If anything went awry, she would fly into hysterics until everyone apologized, groveling for forgiveness really.

What I loved about this book, was the overall content. It is not a very publicized illness and more people should be aware of it’s reality.

Alli

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