Monthly Archives: June 2016

A Murder in Time- Julie McElwain

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“Little twists and turns.”

I picked up this book after finally figuring out how to borrow ebooks from my local library. While trying to do that the first thing that popped up is “Join the Big Library Read”. Being the book nerd that I am I clicked on the link and was taken to biglibraryread.com, which is where I saw a synopsis and cover of Julie McElwain’s book  A Murder in Time.

First I should explain what  The Big Library Read is, eh? It is the first ever global eBook club! I’m not sure what the timeline is for the books, is it every month or not, but it seems like it is picking up steam since it started back in 2014. All you need is a library card or a student id. When I read the synopsis for the book I didn’t think it would be for me. Time travel…murder mystery… Then I thought; didn’t I just read a book kind of like that? 11/22/63 !!! So, I gave it a shot.

There are no holds on Big Library Read books and you get them for two weeks. I picked this book up on Friday and flew through it so I’m not quite sure what happens to books if you don’t finish them. Maybe they just disappear. How sad.

Anyway, back to the book. I loved this book! I never thought I was one for murder mysteries; which is strange because my Netflix queue is filled with murder mystery documentaries. This book was a joy to read and kept me guessing right up until the end. The language is easy to read and the chapters are short, which I enjoy because it makes it seem like things go by quicker.

Kendra Donovan is an FBI agent who goes on a mission to destroy the man who changed her life and the lives of her fellow agents. When she falls in to a “wormhole” and is transported to the same castle she happens to be standing in but in the year 1815. She quickly realizes this is no dream and sets out trying to blend in. Which is hard when you don’t know the lingo. People didn’t really go around taking the Lord’s name in vain and calling people “son’s a bitches” back then.

She also meets the people who live at Aldrich Castle and the people who are there for a sort of dinner party weekend. When a girl is found in the nearby river dead Kendra quickly snaps back in to FBI mode and sets up shop in the castle to try and find out who did it and when he will strike again.

A Murder in Time had everything! Fantasy, mystery, and a bit of romance. I could not put it down and was startled a few times when my cat jumped up on the couch next to me. Once I got to the end my jaw was on the floor and I was craving more! I want to know more about her scientist parents and the “experiments”. I want to know how she has been the only person to find this “wormhole” to 1815. And gosh darn it, I want to know what happens with her and her 1815 love interest Alec!!!

Ms. McElwain is writing a sequel and it is slated to come out in 2017. Now I wait…

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Little Lies- Heather Gudenkauf

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“As much as I would like to protect the children I work with from the truth, I learned very early on that lies, big or little, eventually destroy, or at the very least, erode their faith in the world.”

Ms. Gudenkauf does it again! Those of you who have been following me for a while know that she is hands down one of my favorite authors. Starting with The Weight of Silence which left me so speechless I didn’t know what to read next for about a month. Then with These Things Hidden which also left in a kind of “book readers euphoria” for a few weeks.

Her writing is so real and fluid you feel like you are a peeping-tom, quietly looming in the bushes of the lives of her characters. Not to mention the twists and turns she has always placed in the perfect points in her books. Little Lies is no different! A novella prequel to Little Mercies, it gives you a backstory in to the work relationship of Ellen and Joe; a social worker and a police officer who seem to be a little more than friends.

It deals with a case that we have seen before. A woman is found dead by the side of her young child who is very much alive. What ensues is a who-dun-it and why that is so gripping to read, I couldn’t it down. At 44 pages (Kindle) it’s a short read. But it being summer I was sitting outside enjoying a beverage and baking in the heat and even though I could barely stand the heat from the sun I stayed until I was finished.

She never disappoints me and I can’t wait to pick up Little Mercies. Unfortunately, before I read this book I had already made a commitment, to myself, that I would read the worldwide “Big Library Read”,  A Murder in Time. I just discovered that I can borrow ebooks from my library. Game changer. So, until then, Ellen and Joe are going to have to be put on hold and; as always, Thanks, Ms. Gudenkauf!

#BigLibraryRead


American Gods- Neil Gaiman

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“So, none of this is happening. Such things could not occur in this day and age. Never a word of it is literally true, although it all happened, and the next thing that happened, happened like this…”

I had picked up this book ages ago and put it down shortly after finishing the first chapter. I wasn’t in the right mindset and I, surprisingly, hadn’t met anyone who had read it. Fast forward to about a month ago and everyone I talk to has read it and loved it! So, after finishing Into the Wild I went in the completely opposite direction and picked up the epic fantasy that is American Gods.

Let me start out by saying, I liked it. I really did. Do I think the middle lagged a little bit? Yes. All in all though it was a great story and the characters in it were endearing; well, most of them anyway. I felt like Gaiman had too many stories in his head and tried to make them all fit together, come hell or high water (no pun intended).

The story focuses on Shadow Moon a man who is imprisoned for robbing a bank. He’s quiet. He does his time and he is about to be released in to the loving arms of his wife. When the warden calls him in to his office he knows it’s bad news, maybe they’ve decided to keep him in longer and parole was just a huge joke. He’s wrong. The warden informs him that he will be getting out early because his wife was killed in a car accident the night before. So starts the journey. On his way to her funeral Shadow meets a man named Mr. Wednesday who promptly asks Shadow to be his right hand man. After some mead and a bout with a leprechaun Shadow agrees.

After this Shadow meets all kinds of gods, demi-gods, spooks, and haunts. None of which seems to phase him in the slightest. Not even when one of them bets him his life at a game of checkers. Nope. All of this seems perfectly normal to good ol’ Shadow. The only “normal” part of the book, and Shadow’s life it seems, is when his hiding out in a town called Lakeside in Wisconsin. He lives in a decent apartment, meets his neighbors, befriends the old guy whom everyone knows, and even gets in good with the local police. That’s when he hears about the child disappearances. Not so normal now.

It’s hard to describe what happens next. A lot happens. No, I mean a lot happens and doesn’t happen. When I finally made it to the end, which I loved (no spoilers here), I thought he could’ve achieved the same effect in a short story or a couple of short stories. Enter Fragile Things. It’s a short story collection by Neil Gaiman and there are a few in there about Mr. Wednesday and the whole AG crew. Maybe I will get more answers in there.

All in all I did enjoy it. A little long and a little sweeping in my opinion but I did enjoy being with Mr. Wednesday and his band of gods. I’m interested to see how they’ll pull this off as a mini-series next year. I still refuse to watch The Magician’s.