Monday, October 24, 2016

Dear Mr. M by Herman Koch

Released: September 2016


While hunting for my next book to review, I couldn't resist grabbing Herman Koch's Dear Mr. M. I absolutely loved The Dinner, which I reviewed last fall, and was excited to see what the author could churn up in this novel. Plus, I love reading novels about authors. Authors have become much more interesting since I've started blogging, that's for sure!

Sunday, September 4, 2016

I Am No One by Patrick Flanery

Released: July 2016

Anyone who knows me pretty well knows where I stand in regards to privacy, surveillance, and Big Brother. I generally stay away from social media services and apps that get too personal (*cough* Facebook), and I don't post photos of myself anywhere on the Internet. That said, I was super excited when I initially read the synopsis for I Am No One by Patrick Flanery.

The novel's official synopsis (from Penguin/Random House) is as follows:

Saturday, June 11, 2016

I Take You by Eliza Kennedy

Released: May 2015

A few weeks ago when browsing titles for my next book review, it was hard to resist the bawdy, unconventional summary of I Take You by Eliza Kennedy. This debut novel sounded like a train wreck, and I was only too happy to see what it was all about.

I devoured this book within two days, and was utterly sad when it ended. It's so witty and hilarious that I literally laughed out loud every few pages, which I RARELY do!

Saturday, May 21, 2016

I, Mona Lisa by Jeanne Kalogridis

www.jeannekalogridis.com
Released: October 2006

Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres. I fell in love with this genre several years ago when I read The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers by Margaret George. Before then, I had limited knowledge of Henry VIII and the stories behind his six wives. The novel shed an entirely new light on what might have been.

I, Mona Lisa is the story of Lisa Gherardini, the subject of Leonardo da Vinci's famous portrait. Set against the backdrop of Florence during the Italian Renaissance, this novel details Mona Lisa's heritage and life under Lorenzo de Medici's rule.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Never-Open Desert Diner by James Anderson

Released: March 2016

The Never-Open Desert Diner follows a trucker named Ben Jones, who delivers goods to people who live along a barren section of Route 117 in the Utah desert. Ben's days are usually all the same: long, repetitive, and uneventful.

One day, Ben impulsively turns off Route 117 and stumbles upon an abandoned housing development that looks as though it once could have breathed life in this remote, quiet part of the desert. That's where Ben meets Claire, a seductive, alluring half-Asian woman who plays the cello and stays low-key to evade her dangerous husband.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Wireman by Billie Sue Mosiman

My beloved copy of Wireman
Released: October 1984

I found Wireman in the horror section at my local used bookstore. I read Deadly Affections by Billie Sue Mosiman a few years ago, so I was familiar with the author and couldn't resist the cover of Wireman. This novel is a brief, though satisfying read if you appreciate the horror, thriller, & suspense genres.

The boy is evil!

Ten-year-old Nick Ringer and his younger brother Daley often fend for themselves since their mother devotes her time to drinking, drugs, and "whoring" the streets of Bloomington. In summer of 1960, Nick realizes he's only having fun when he's hurting or killing frogs, rodents, and other small animals. Fast forward to Vietnam 1974, and Nick and Daley are lone American survivors in a forest near Quang Ngai. Daley finally understands his brother's true evil nature when Nick easily kills a Vietnam soldier using a garrote without batting an eye. From that point on, there's no denying Nick is dangerous and needs help.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Mapmaker's Children by Sarah McCoy

Released: February 2016

My interest in the Underground Railroad first began in 1989, when I was nine years old. My school librarian recommended The House of Dies Drear by Virginia Hamilton, which I absolutely fell in love with. My parents never talked to us kids about the history of slavery and the Underground Railroad, so from that point on, I became obsessed with reading about Harriet Tubman, the Civil Rights Movement, and Martin Luther King, Jr.

As soon as I saw "Underground Railroad" mentioned in the synopsis for The Mapmaker's Children, I was sold.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Eleanor by Jason Gurley

eleanor by jason gurley
Released: January 2016

Eleanor was initially self-published by Jason Gurley in summer 2014, and was picked up by Crown Publishing later that year. Eleanor caught my attention because I normally can't resist haunting stories about twins who have been separated. The novel's genre is best described as literature with a twist of sci-fi/fantasy, since it involves otherworldly elements.

When death shatters a family

Eleanor is just six years old when her twin sister Esmerelda is thrown from the car and killed in a violent accident. Now, eight years later, Eleanor's family is completely torn apart. As the surviving twin, Eleanor feels guilty and blames herself for Esme's death. Her mother Agnes is now an alcoholic and drinks herself into a stupor 24/7, and Eleanor's heartbroken father Paul can barely make it through the day without feeling pangs of sadness.