Book Review: Fever Dream

Book Review: Fever DreamFever Dream
by Samanta Schweblin, Megan McDowell
on January 10th 2017
Pages: 192
Published by Riverhead Books
Genres: Literary Fiction, Multicultural, Mystery/Crime
Goodreads

A young woman named Amanda lies dying in a rural hospital clinic. A boy named David sits beside her. She's not his mother. He's not her child. Together, they tell a haunting story of broken souls, toxins, and the power and desperation of family.

Fever Dream is a nightmare come to life, a ghost story for the real world, a love story and a cautionary tale. One of the freshest new voices to come out of the Spanish language and translated into English for the first time, Samanta Schweblin creates an aura of strange psychological menace and otherworldly reality in this absorbing, unsettling, taut novel.

My Takeaway  For a short story to be successful it must instantly grab the reader’s attention. At a mere 183 short pages, Fever Dream delivers! The novel was originally written in Spanish (Distancia del Rescate, 2014) by Samanta Schweblin and recently translated by Megan McDowell. The story begins with…

Book Review: The Vegetarian

Book Review: The VegetarianThe Vegetarian
by Han Kang, Deborah Smith
on February 2nd 2016
Pages: 192
Published by Hogarth
Genres: Literary Fiction, Multicultural
Goodreads

Before the nightmare, Yeong-hye and her husband lived an ordinary life. But when splintering, blood-soaked images start haunting her thoughts, Yeong-hye decides to purge her mind and renounce eating meat. In a country where societal mores are strictly obeyed, Yeong-hye's decision to embrace a more “plant-like” existence is a shocking act of subversion. And as her passive rebellion manifests in ever more extreme and frightening forms, scandal, abuse, and estrangement begin to send Yeong-hye spiraling deep into the spaces of her fantasy. In a complete metamorphosis of both mind and body, her now dangerous endeavor will take Yeong-hye—impossibly, ecstatically, tragically—far from her once-known self altogether.

My Takeaway  “If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian.” Paul McCartney I have never read anything quite like The Vegetarian. The novel is about a South Korean woman (Yeong-hye) and the bizarre events that place after she decides to become a vegetarian. Yeong-hye…

Book Review: Firegirl

Book Review: FiregirlFiregirl
by Tony Abbott
on January 1st 1970
Pages: 147
Published by Little Brown and Company
Genres: Young Readers
Goodreads

"...there is..." Mrs. Tracy was saying quietly, "there is something we need to know about Jessica..."

From this moment on, life is never quite the same for Tom and his seventh-grade classmates. They learn that Jessica has been in a fire and was badly burned, and will be attending St. Catherine's while getting medical treatments. Despite her horrifying appearance and the fear she evokes in him and most of the class, Tom slowly develops a tentative friendship with Jessica that changes his life.

My Takeaway  My family and I listened to Abbott’s, Firegirl as an audiobook. It is about a girl named Jessica who is badly burned in an accident. Jessica transfers to a new school to receive treatments from the local hospital. The story is narrated by Tom, Jessica&#8217…

Book Review: Fatal

Book Review: FatalFatal
by John Lescroart
on January 24th 2017
Pages: 320
Published by Atria Books
Genres: Suspense/Thriller
Goodreads

Kate loves her life. At forty-four, she’s happily married to her kind husband, Ron, blessed with two wonderful children, and has a beautiful home in San Francisco. Everything changes, however, when she and Ron attend a dinner party and meet another couple, Peter and Jill. Kate and Peter only exchange a few pleasant words but that night, in bed with her husband, Kate is suddenly overcome with a burning desire for Peter.

What begins as an innocent crush soon develops into a dangerous obsession and Kate’s fixation on Peter results in one intense, passionate encounter between the two. Confident that her life can now go back to normal, Kate never considers that Peter may not be so willing to move on.

Not long after their affair, a masked man barges into the café Kate is sitting in with her best friend, firing an assault weapon indiscriminately into the crowd. This tragedy is the first in a series of horrifying events that will show Kate just how grave the consequences of one mistake can be.

My Takeaway  Fatal is suspenseful, fast-paced and enthralling. The novel shows how one single act can have tremendous and/or devastating consequences. This thriller is filled with compelling twists and turns, which will keep you guessing until the very end – a definite page turner! This is the first…

Book Review: The Girl Before

Book Review: The Girl BeforeThe Girl Before
by J.P. Delaney
on January 24th 2017
Pages: 320
Published by Ballantine Books
Genres: Mystery/Crime, Suspense/Thriller
Goodreads

Please make a list of every possession you consider essential to your life.
The request seems odd, even intrusive—and for the two women who answer, the consequences are devastating.

EmmaReeling from a traumatic break-in, Emma wants a new place to live. But none of the apartments she sees are affordable or feel safe. Until One Folgate Street. The house is an architectural masterpiece: a minimalist design of pale stone, plate glass, and soaring ceilings. But there are rules. The enigmatic architect who designed the house retains full control: no books, no throw pillows, no photos or clutter or personal effects of any kind. The space is intended to transform its occupant—and it does.

JaneAfter a personal tragedy, Jane needs a fresh start. When she finds One Folgate Street she is instantly drawn to the space—and to its aloof but seductive creator. Moving in, Jane soon learns about the untimely death of the home’s previous tenant, a woman similar to Jane in age and appearance. As Jane tries to untangle truth from lies, she unwittingly follows the same patterns, makes the same choices, crosses paths with the same people, and experiences the same terror, as the girl before.

My Takeaway  Imagine living in a house where you are only allowed to take a few personal items…The Girl Before is a clever psychological thriller filled with unique twists and an unexpected ending. For the most part, I found the novel attention-grabbing, but a little repetitive at times…