The Life We Bury

61kacypw28l-_sx331_bo1204203200_What happens when a simple college English assignment turns into a life and death struggle. University of Minnesota college student, Joe Talbert has been assigned to write a biography of an elderly person. As it happens, the only elderly person available at the nearest nursing home is convicted rapist and murderer, Carl Iverson who was released from prison after 30 years because he is dying of cancer.

Carl asserts his innocence and the more Joe investigates the more he believes Carl is not the person who murdered 14 year old Crystal Marie Hagen 30 years ago.

As Joe uncovers more evidence, he puts himself, his autistic brother and his new friend, Lila into the crosshairs of the real killer.

The Life We Bury is a suspenseful and beautifully written novel about a fallen military hero who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I loved this novel and I just couldn’t put it down.

All The Light We Cannot See

all-the-light-we-cannot-seeAnthony Doerr’s brilliant novel, and it shines brilliantly in every word, paragraph and page, takes the reader, body and soul, into the nightmare that was Germany and France in the years leading up to and during WWII.

A young French girl, Marie-Laure who is blind and a young German boy, Werner who is an orphan find their lives inter connected  not only by the war, but by a radio broadcast forbidden by the Third Reich. And by a rare diamond sought after by Germany.

Werner is a mathematical genius used by the Nazi’s to enhance their radio technology. Marie-Laure becomes the unwitting keeper of the diamond, The Sea of Flames which some believe is cursed.

It is the story of their mutual struggle for survival during the atrocities of war and of what they learn about the nature of humanity.

Surprisingly Entertaining

517ekyx7elStalking Jack the Ripper, a well researched novel for young adults, is historical fiction and if you like bloody details, this one fits the bill. The author did her homework not only on the details, but with the setting. James Patterson is selecting and promoting young adult mysteries. This is his first, and he definitely got it right. I hope to see more from this debut novelist. 4 stars for accuracy and entertainment.

 

Reality

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Civilized life, you know, is based on a huge number of illusions in which we all collaborate willingly. The trouble is we forget after a while that they are illusions, and we are deeply shocked when reality is torn down around us.

Will You Miss Me?

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When I am long in my eternal repose

Will you still miss me?

When the leaves dash against your window, unaccountably

Will you pause?

When the clouds blanket the sun, though a shadow passes over

Will you wonder?

When a cold spot lingers near your bed in the heat of summer

Will you shiver, just a bit?

When a favorite book flutters from my desk to the floor

Will you simply turn away?

When from the corner of your eye, you glimpse a movement

Will you deny, it might have been I?

Hunting and Gathering in America — Wine and Cheese (Doodles)

Over the past few days I’ve watched several Trump surrogates attempt to deflect questions from women, young girls, and reporters about the recent allegations against Donald Trump. Mike Pence, when given a question asked by an eleven year-old girl who felt disheartened by Trump’s language, switched to a conversation about foreign policy. Ben Carson, when […]

via Hunting and Gathering in America — Wine and Cheese (Doodles)

It Ends With Us, by Colleen Hoover

This novel grabs you and sweeps you into a story  of love, lust and betrayal. At turns comic and tragic, It Ends With Us explores abuse from those who are supposed to protect and love us and those we fall in love with.

It Ends With Us

Lily Bloom is fresh out of college when she meets a young doctor who is just finishing his residency. And even though there is an immediate attraction, they both go their own ways. He’s not interested in a serious relationship, ever,  he insists and she’s busy starting her own business.

Eventually Ryle and Lily meet again, both having never forgotten each other. They fall in madly love and marry.

But a young man from Lily’s youth, her first love, enters the picture. Atlas was a homeless high school student. Lily helped him survive while at the same time doing her best to prevent her father from being abusive to her mother. Lily’s father had been abusive to her mother for years. Atlas was her best friend and she leaned on him to help get her through the heartache of watching the continued abuse of her mother.

Years later, Lily and Atlas reconnect as friends and nothing more, as they both have a profound and deep respect for the other.

 Lily is in love with her husband, she trusts him and respects him. The first time he strikes her, it’s deemed a mistake, he didn’t mean to and he’s sorry. He loves her and does everything he can to make up for his actions. At first, Lily blames herself, just as her mother did.  But is she strong enough to stop it? Or will she endure it, making excuses, just as her mother did. When Ryle sees Lily and Atlas innocently talking it sets into motion a series of events that will shatter their marriage.

Domestic abuse is insidious, the abuser often excuses his actions by shifting the blame to his wife, or girlfriend. This enthralling novel explores how the abuser and his victim unwittingly conspire though co-dependency, and how the abuse can dangerously escalate.

I highly recommend this exceptionally well written novel. I  couldn’t put it down.

 

 

Dark Matter

Dark matterDark Matter, by Blake Crouch, is a mind-boggling foray into the world of Multi-Verses.  This novel is exciting and terrifying by turns,  and it gives rise to questions of our universe. Jason Dessen is a college professor of physics in Chicago, and  husband to the beautiful artist, Daniela and a father to their son, Charlie. His life is picture perfect and he’s happy, except there are the times when he wonders what turn his life would have taken if he’d stayed with his research instead of marrying and having a child.  One night he goes to meet a colleague who has won a great scientific prize, the one he should have won.  That’s when improbablity meets probability.

This novel is based on the idea that our lives are a matter of random choices with equally random outcomes, but with far reaching consquences. What if we’d taken another path, instead of the one we are on?  What if another version of Jason Dessen, the one who didn’t marry, who did the research that enabled him to change his destiny,decided he wanted the other Jason’s life?

This fictional account is well written and researched. It poses many questions about our universe. It’s a great read!