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The setting of this novel is an isolated community on the east coast of Russia, the Kamchatka Peninsula. In the first chapter two young girls - sisters, go missing. Each chapter after that is a short story about different women that may have connections to the missing girls. But how? The authors skillful telling of this year in the aftermath of the kidnapping ropes you into the very different lives these women lead. And through it all you are still wondering what happened to these girls. The way this novel is put together is so original and compelling I can't recommend it enough.
I'm partial to stories about wacky, interesting and/or dysfunctional families that have a happy ending. Or at least an ending that doesn't end in too much grief. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett, I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith, The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, Matilda by Roald Dahl, anything by John Irving, Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff, Spoonbenders by Daryl Gregory. The list could go on and on.
We're All in This Together by Amy Jones fits the bill. The Parker family has come together because the grandmother has gone over a waterfall in a barrel and survived. The question of course is why?
Over the course of a few days the fractured family fractures even more. In hilarious and heartbreaking ways.
The story is set in Thunder Bay and Duluth which gives it a familiar midwestern feel. This is a terrific book and I highly recommend.
Elizabeth McCracken is a favorite writer of mine.
The Kirkus review says "Her psychological acuity transforms what might otherwise have been a twee clutter of oddball details into moving metaphors for the human condition." And, "McCracken's parade of Dickensian grotesques fall in love, feud, reproduce, vanish, and reappear, all with a ridiculous dignity that many readers, if they’re honest, will cringe to recognize from their own lives."
BOWLAWAY is a big goofy delight of a story with writing that dazzles.
I tore through this. A fun read for your beach vacation.
A really interesting look at a murder/insurance scam case that Harper Lee spent years investigating and writing about. Author Casey Cep has done a wonderful job researching this case and then wrapping in what is known about Lee's research and time spent in the small Alabama towns where these crimes were committed.
Harper Lee's research and notes for In Cold Blood were copious so there must be volumes on these crimes as well.
We can only wonder about all the treasures buried in Harper Lee's vault.
The Witch Elm is my introduction to Tana French's work. Where have I been all these years??
This novel is about a guy called Toby. He's a regular, mostly likeable fella who's never had to work or try very hard to be successful. He can usually twist in or out of most predicaments.
One night he's nearly beaten to death by burglars and this rocks his world. He goes to stay with an uncle who's dying and soon after, a young relative finds a skull in the trunk of a tree in his uncle's yard. His refuge is now a crime scene and detectives are questioning every family member.
The author is a master at building suspense so as the plot thickens, so does the tension.
I couldn't put this book down.
Dessa! My new favorite writer. I think I have a little crush on her.
Her writing is brave, crisp, funny, and relateable. And did I mention funny?
If you are going on a road trip, this is the audio book to make the miles fly by.
The language is lovely, poetic, musical, haunting. The story will stay with you long after the book ends.
National Book Award finalist.
An illustrated memoir about a family struggling with addiction. I loved it and think kids 12 and up will too.
Speechless is a story, a learning experience, in which a boy named Jimmy learns how to really see his cousin, Patrick, who has died at age 13.
Jimmy is asked, told really, to give a eulogy for his cousin Patrick's funeral. Every time Jimmy and Patrick have been together things have turned into disaster because Patrick was so volatile. Throughout the book Jimmy is desperately searching for one fond memory he can talk about in the eulogy. Every birthday party, 4th of July picnic, school concert, even a walk to the drugstore, has turned into a crisis. Jimmy's starting to panic that he won't have a nice thing to say about Patrick.
This poignant book is an exploration of families and how they do and don't listen to one another.
Although aimed at middle schoolers, many adults would benefit from reading this story. Plus, it's really funny!
Louisiana is one of the characters in Kate's earlier novels, Raymie Nightingale. I'm so glad Louisiana's shining voice is back in this wonderful new story.
For teens, a novel about a girl who tells the truth.
A well told and still timely tale of a young girls abuse at the hands of an older authority figure.
A really good middle-grade read about a girl who's parents are ghost hunters. With a twist.
Always a fan.
A graphic memoir. Liked it very much.