I chose to review Voice in the Wind after meeting the author Judy Bruce. Judy is a fellow Nebraskan and has a passion for reading, writing and her family. In Voices in the Wind, she takes us on a young woman’s journey of loss, betrayal, discover and love. Set in Nebraska I enjoyed watching her transformation, and seeing the familiar Nebraskan landscape. With a touch of spiritual awareness, Megan’s story will capture the reader.
A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler takes us into the lives of the Whitshanks from the 1920’s to present day giving us glimpses into their daily lives, beginnings, frustrations and life’s ever changing cycles. Humorous, poignant and complex Tyler brought this family to life sharing the complexity of family life.
I am not a fan of the cover, despite the fact that after reading Painted From Memories, I see how it fits. Do not let it distract you because beneath this plain Jane cover lies a beautiful literary fiction. Barbara Forte Abate shares an interesting tale with two quirky, artistic types set in the small rural town of Lost River, Maine. Painted From Memories is a gripping tale with several threads that had me lost within its pages.
I first discovered Chris Bohjalian in 2011 when I read and loved his suspense thriller, The Night Strangers. Since then I have read two of his historical fictions The Sandcastle Girls and The Light in the Ruins. Each story is vastly different, beautiful, captivating and memorable. It seems no matter what story Bohjalian tells it is destined to entwine itself into my memory.
I grew up in South Jersey and as a young teen traveled with my maternal grandparents to central Pennsylvania for the day. There we toured an abandoned coalmine. We rode inside the tunnels on old coal cars draped in thick miner coats and helmets. We learned about working in the mines from the working conditions to the ailments workers suffered. We then visited abandon towns with boarded up windows and overgrown lawns.; viewed fields where smoke and sulfur gases rose from the ground licked by flames. It was dark, sad and oddly eerie. On the car ride home, I imagined what people in those towns must have experienced. Where did they go? Why did some choose to stay? It was one of those memories that stayed with me. When I was approached to review the audio version of The Hollow Ground by Natalie S. Harnett and realized, the story was about a family in this ravaged area I immediately accepted. The Hollow Ground was a poignant tale of heartache, growth and the ties that bind us.
Barbara Forte Abate’s writing style has always delighted me and I was pleased to accept an arc of Asleep Without Dreaming. Abate took me on a coming of age journey at the Moonglow motel with fleshed out characters and a look at life in a forgotten town. I quickly became caught up in this slow moving tale and let her words carry me away.