Monday, June 12, 2017

Review: The Barrowfields by Phillip Lewis


The Barrowfields is a richly textured, deeply transporting novel that traces the fates and ambitions of a father and son across the decades, centered in the small Appalachian town that simultaneously defines them and drives them both away.

Just before Henry Aster’s birth, his father—outsized literary ambition and pregnant wife in tow—reluctantly returns to the remote North Carolina town in which he was raised and installs his young family in an immense house of iron and glass perched high on the side of a mountain. There, Henry and his younger sister grow up in thrall to their fiercely brilliant, obsessive father, who spends his days as a lawyer in town and his nights writing in his library. But when tragedy tips his father toward a fearsome unraveling, Henry’s youthful reverence is poisoned and he flees, resolving never to return.

During his time away at college and then law school, Henry meets a young woman whose own family past is shrouded in mystery and who helps him grapple with his father’s haunting legacy. He begins to realize that, try as he might, he’ll never truly escape the place he sought to leave behind, and that he, too, must go home again.

Mythic in its sweep and mesmeric in its prose, The Barrowfields is a breathtaking novel that explores the darker side of devotion, the limits of forgiveness, and the reparative power of shared pasts.

My Review:

5 Stars

Returning with a pregnant wife to the small Appalachian town he grew up in, Henry is determined to write a book. He moves his family into a spooky, gothic house perched on a hill overlooking Old Buckram. A house with a tragic past, which only seems to bring more tragedy as the years progress.

Then, Henry disappears one rainy night, never to be seen again. Leaving his wife to raise their two children, young Henry and Threnody, on her own. Until Young Henry leaves for college. Returning later in life, we finally learn the fate of his father. A beautifully written story of family, love, and loss.

About the Author:

Phillip Lewis



Phillip Lewis was born and raised in the mountains of North Carolina. He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law, where he served as editor in chief of the Campbell Law Review. He now lives in Charlotte. THE BARROWFIELDS is his first novel.





Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Summer Reading Challenge



KU Readers!!! Are you ready for a fun-filled summer of reading?? Well, what if you could win prizes for all those books? Think back to those summers as a kid with your Pizza Hut Book It! reading list. Remember how exciting it was to race off to the library or your local bookstore to gather all those books you'd need to read? Well, it's like that, only better. Because now, you can read them all through your KU subscription and never have to leave your house. Well, unless you need more wine. 

The Summer Reading Challenge will kick off June 1st and end June 30.

Click the link below for more information and to join the event!

https://goo.gl/lBC1B7https://goo.gl/lBC1B7


Monday, May 22, 2017

Review: The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel




“Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die.”

After her mother's suicide, fifteen year-old Lane Roanoke came to live with her grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, on their vast estate in rural Kansas. Lane knew little of her mother's mysterious family, but she quickly embraced life as one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But when she discovered the dark truth at the heart of the family, she ran…fast and far away.

Eleven years later, Lane is adrift in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls to tell her Allegra has gone missing. Did she run too? Or something worse? Unable to resist his pleas, Lane returns to help search, and to ease her guilt at having left Allegra behind. Her homecoming may mean a second chance with the boyfriend whose heart she broke that long ago summer. But it also means facing the devastating secret that made her flee, one she may not be strong enough to run from again.

As it weaves between Lane’s first Roanoke summer and her return, The Roanoke Girls shocks and tantalizes, twisting its way through revelation after mesmerizing revelation, exploring the secrets families keep and the fierce and terrible love that both binds them together and rips them apart.



My Review

5 Stars


"Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die." 

Growing up in New York with her emotionally unstable mother, Lane has never really known love, or her family. Her mother left home before Lane was born. When her mother commits suicide, Lane is sent to live with the grandparents her mother left behind 15 years ago, and her cousin, Allegra, whom they are raising. 

It seems like a normal, loving, stable home. But not everything is what it seems. And when Lane finds out the dark secret at the heart of her family, she runs. For eleven years she has lived in Los Angeles. Trying to forget the dark secret she left behind. Until Allegra goes missing and she has to go back and face the past. 

A twisted story about a family and their dark, dirty secret. From page one, this book grabs you. It's kind of heartbreaking but you just can't stop reading. Even while thinking how could they??? It makes you wonder what kind of sickness lurks around you. 

About the Author

Amy Engel


Amy Engel is the author of the YA novels THE BOOK OF IVY and THE REVOLUTION OF IVY. She lives in Missouri with her family. THE ROANOKE GIRLS is her first novel for adults.



Saturday, May 13, 2017

Review: Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan



Synopsis:


On a warm August night in 1980, six college students sneak into the dilapidated ruins of Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary, looking for a thrill. With a pianist, a painter and a teacher among them, the friends are full of potential. But it’s not long before they realize they are locked in—and not alone. When the friends get lost and separated, the terrifying night ends in tragedy, and the unexpected, far-reaching consequences reverberate through the survivors’ lives. As they go their separate ways, trying to move on, it becomes clear that their dark night in the prison has changed them all. Decades later, new evidence is found, and the dogged detective investigating the cold case charges one of them—celebrity chef Jon Casey— with murder. Only Casey’s old friend Judith Carrigan can testify to his innocence. 

But Judith is protecting long-held secrets of her own – secrets that, if brought to light, could destroy her career as a travel writer and tear her away from her fireman husband and teenage son. If she chooses to help Casey, she risks losing the life she has fought to build and the woman she has struggled to become. In any life that contains a “before” and an “after,” how is it possible to live one life, not two?




My Review:

4 Stars

This is a story about a group of college friends and how a lie can destroy you. Trapped in an abandoned prison, 6 friends go in, but only 5 make it out. Many years later, the 6th friend is found, and it changes the course of everyone's lives. 

The story was intriguing. There was a lot going on, but it wasn't hard to follow. The characters had depth, and there were ones that I liked at the start that I didn't care for by the time their story was told. Maisie seemed caring at first, but towards the end you could see how really selfish she was, especially when it came to her brother, Ben.

I received this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for an honest review.

Author Information:



Jenny Boylan is the author of ten books, including the brand-new I'M LOOKING THROUGH YOU, a memoir about growing up in a haunted house, as well as a reflection on the nature of "being haunted." Her 2003 memoir, SHE'S NOT THERE was one of the first bestselling works by a transgender American. A three-time guest of the Oprah Winfrey program, she has twice appeared on Larry King Live as well as on the Today Show. She has been the subject of a documentary on CBS News' 48 Hours, and in the spring of 2007, Jenny played herself on several episodes of ABC's All My Children. She has been parodied with eerie accuracy by Will Forte on "Saturday Night Live." Since 1988, Jenny has been a professor of English at Colby College in Waterville, Maine.