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review 2017-05-25 08:13
Allie and Bea
Allie and Bea - Catherine Ryan Hyde

By:  Catherine Ryan Hyde 

ISBN:  978-1477819715

Publisher:  Lake Union 

Publication Date: 5/23/2017 

Format: Paperback 

My Rating: 4 Stars 


Master storyteller, Catherine Ryan Hyde returns following Say Good-Bye for Now landing on my Top 50 Books of 2016 with another emotional thought-provoking saga ALLIE AND BEA – two protagonists from different generations caught up an unfair system find they may learn something from one another.

The best and worst of humanity.

Bea a senior barely making it on her small social security check. Her husband is deceased and she resides in a mobile home with her cat Phyllis. Her savings is nearly depleted trying to make ends meet.

Then a phone scammer saying he is from the IRS to collect back taxes. Quickly her money is gone. Wiped out. She has nowhere to turn and nowhere to live. Even her rent check will bounce since someone wiped out her bank account.

Feeling stupid and helpless, she has to change her direct deposit bank account and decides she has no choice but to live in her old van with her cat; and leaves her things with a friend. She barely has enough money for gas and food for another month until she receives her next social security check.

Then she is faced with the impossible and begins doing things she never thought she would do in order to survive. Bea does not have any knowledge of cell phones, nor the internet. She never had the opportunity to do much traveling nor see the world. She is rough around the edges, and over the years she has learned not to let others in or get too close. She does not trust easily, cynical, and now a loner. How will she continue to survive sleeping in her van and too old for a job?

Told from two points of view, we meet Allie. Allie is a teen and wise beyond her years. She is smart and has strong principals and integrity. She is a devout vegan and very strict with her food and lifestyle.

She has just discovered her mom and dad are being arrested for tax fraud and being sent to jail. She is left with a social worker, and has to leave her home, friends, school, and all her possessions -
taken to a group home. Allie has no clue of the evil of this world.

All this is foreign to Allie. She soon learns people in this world are not so nice. Some of the girls are very dangerous at the group home and things get out of hand. She has nowhere to turn and no money. Then her only hope is a friend who helps her escape and soon finds herself in another nightmare even worse than what she left. Human trafficking.

She has one shot in order to escape a madman. Soon an unlikely old woman and a runaway teen connect. Two lives both desperate. They soon discover they may learn some hard life lessons together.

As always, Hyde takes readers on a thought-provoking adventure. It may not be an easy road; however, her characters always find a way to connect with someone on a different path to change their lives. Fate intersects. They may not know the reason for the encounter, but you can be assured they were meant to take the journey.

Even though I could relate to Bea being a senior, had to think of my recent experience with my dad, age 86 yrs old with this crazy healthcare system and a recent phone scam. Luckily he did not get sucked into this and lose his money.


I also related to Allie in so many ways. She is wise beyond her years. She has integrity. I am also a vegan and some of the reactions are ones I face daily. I had to laugh when I went to a shelter during our last Florida hurricane evacuation. I could eat nothing they had. It was good I packed some healthy snacks and was able to go home the following day. Being a vegan is foreign to many in our world. Lots of laughs between the two.

I admired Allie for her strong principals; however, it also demonstrated how when faced with survival, how people get desperate enough to cross moral and ethical lines. A heartwarming story of the kindness of others. She taught Bea so much about herself.

No one can take you on a better road trip adventure than Catherine Ryan Hyde— mixed with life messiness, emotion, heart, and lots of humor. I think we have all been close to living in our car at one time or another, in our lives when things have looked hopeless.

A good look at our broken system and how it fails the young and the old in different and similar ways. When this happens, we may not always have a family; however, there may be a guardian angel where we least expect through the kindness of a stranger.

The highs and loves of life! The cracks in life let the light through. After reading a CRH book you want to rush out and do something good for someone, or volunteer at a homeless shelter. Help someone less fortunate. You want to give back. Life changing moments. Inspiring.

In addition to the reading copy, also purchased the audiobook, narrated by Lauren Ezzo and Janet Metzger with an engaging performance for both voices. Loved the journey along the Pacific Coast. One of my favorite cities: Santa Barbara, CA! I was curious to see how these two souls from different walks of life would connect - fans will enjoy this one.

From an online interview with the author we get a glimpse into what’s coming next:

“After Allie and Bea will come a novel called The Wake-Up, about a former cattle rancher who becomes so sensitive to the emotions of others that his entire life is turned upside-down. And all this just as he’s trying to find his way with a seriously abused new stepson who can’t be trusted around his animals.” Read more

Ironically, have read many of CRH books ; however, realized this evening I have never watched or read, Catherine Ryan Hyde’s international sensation, Pay It Forward, the moving story of Trevor McKinney, a 12-year-old boy who accepts his social studies teacher’s challenge to come up with a plan to change the world. Rented it tonight on Amazon Kindle- highly recommend if you have not read the book or watched the movie. (have some Kleenex handy).

A special thank you to Lake Union and NetGalley for an early reading copy.

Source: www.judithdcollinsconsulting.com/single-post/2017/02/01/Allie-and-Bea
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review 2017-05-03 20:41
Allie and Bea - Catherine Ryan Hyde

I have only recently discovered Catherine Ryan Hyde. However, since that discovery, I have read about four of her books. I have not been disappointed by any of them. This book reaches right up there with the others.

I loved these characters. Bea so grouchy and pissed at the world, her deceased husband and how she has ended up at her age with really nothing. And then there's Allie, so young and innocent, honest and trustworthy. Allie literally runs into Bea while she is driving her van and just jumps into the van. Bea is frantically trying to push her out thinking she's about to be carjacked while Allie is telling her that a man is after her and that Bea needs to drive away and do it fast. This is the beginning of the Allie and Bea story.

This was such a great story, I absolutely loved it. Their bickering and fighting over what little money they have together as they decide to travel up the coast of California to the Puget Sound. You will definitely need tissues for this! And I guarantee you will love these characters at the end of the book. I know I did and was not even close to being ready to leave them when I read the last page. I want an Allie and Bea series! HA!!

Huge thanks to Lake Union Publishing for approving my request to read this book and to Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

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text 2017-04-18 02:24
The New BookExpoAmerica Immigration... er, Vetting Process- yeah, That's What I Meant

With this year's BEA returning to New York- where it should stay- I went to the site to secure my place in these three days of literary nirvana.  My euphoria was short lived when I ran into what can only be described as applying for papers to enter East Germany. Now I know there's been issues in the past of knuckleheads and lowlifes using the BEA to load up on freebies and pawn them off on eBay and all, so I've no problem with them taking steps to curb that bullshit.  I get it.  But...



Dafuq, y'all? 


Who came up with this shit- Homeland Security?!?  My first thought upon seeing all this was "but I already live in the US!!!"  I work in the Security fieldand I've had less stringent job applications than this! 


So now I'm actually sitting her crafting responses to this nonsense, because it's already to the point of morbid curiousity just to see if I get clearance... I mean, approved- nah, fuck it- clearance!- to attend the damn thing. 



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text 2017-04-01 02:01
Is This Thing On?

Well- looks like the place is up and running again... Guess I've got some catching up to do.


Kinda upset with BookExpoAmerica (BEA). They're back in NYC this year and when I went to check the page about registering, there were some changes.


The big one is you have to APPLY before you can even register.  You have to be vetted before you can even give them your hard-earned money!  I guess this is a measure to keep out the "riff raff".  It's always been open to the public, but the last few years have seen a bunch of issue crop up so I guess this is their way of being proactive.  It's like the BEA was a rider attached to Trump's Muslim Ban...



And the prices have pretty much doubled.  A 3-day pass used to be in the $150-$175 range, as you can seen it's now $300!  $400 if you register "late" or onsite during the expo.  They've kept prices the same for industry professionals, tho.


Looks like I'm gonna be putting in lotsa OT this month.


Nice to be back 'round these parts.

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review 2016-12-18 08:26
Denn sie wissen nicht, dass sie tot sind
The Returned - Die Vergangenheit kehrt zurück - Seth Patrick,Bea Reiter

In einer französischen Kleinstadt geschieht das Unmögliche. Die Toten kehren zurück! Nein, es sind keine Untoten mit Zombiecharme, sondern normale Menschen, die sich wundern, warum sich manches verändert hat. Denn sie wissen nicht, dass sie tot sind. Gleichzeitig schweben die Lebenden in Gefahr.

„The Returned“ spricht wohl das gruseligste aller Themen an. Denn die Verstorbenen sind zurückgekehrt. Jeder kann sich dabei vorstellen, dass es nicht nur positive Seiten hat, wenn sich ein Toter zurück ins Leben schleicht. Denn die Hinterbliebenen sind weiter ihren Weg gegangen und werden plötzlich von der Vergangenheit eingeholt.

Gleichzeitig ist es auch gruselig, weil man nicht weiß, wie es dazu gekommen ist. Zwar steht der geliebte Mensch - den man unwiderruflich verloren glaubte - vor einen und man möchte im ersten Moment nicht nur ihn sondern die ganze Welt umarmen, trotzdem stellt sich ein nagendes Gefühl bei den Hinterbliebenen ein. Denn woher weiß man, dass es tatsächlich dieser Mensch und kein bösartiges Wesen ist?

Wie man merkt, ich mag diesen Mysteryton, ich mag Romane, die das Dunkle, Gruselige, aufgreifen und mit der Realität verflechten. Damit hat der Autor auf jeden Fall einen interessanten Roman geschaffen, der mir gut gefallen hat.

Im Mittelpunkt der Wiederkehrer stehen die Jugendliche Camille, die bei einem Busunfall ihr Ende fand, Simon, der sich ausgerechnet an seinem Hochzeitstag das Leben nahm, und Victor, ein kleiner Junge, der keine Lust auf lange Gespräche als Lebender hat. Obwohl all diese Charaktere sehr mysteriös dargestellt sind, fehlte es mir leider am Hintergrund, weil keiner weiß, warum sie zurückgekehrt sind. Noch schlimmer, sie wissen anfangs nicht einmal, dass sie überhaupt gestorben sind!

Die anderen Figuren sind quer durch die Bewohner der Kleinstadt gestreut. Neben den Toten stehen die Lebenden im Vordergrund, die es nicht nur mit ihren alt-neuen Familienmitgliedern, sondern auch mit realen Gefahren zu tun haben. Léna kann ihrer toten Zwillingsschwester nicht vertrauen, Simon macht seiner Verlobten Adéle Angst und Victor hat sich bei Krankenschwester Julie einquartiert, die gegen die Einsamkeit kämpft.

Gleichzeitig driftet die ganze Stadt ins Chaos ab. Stromausfälle häufen sich, der Staudamm ist in Gefahr und unerklärlicherweise hat es die Polizei nach jahrelanger Pause mit einem altbekannten Triebtäter erneut zutun.

Der Erzählstil ist in etwas langatmige Sequenzen eingeteilt. Man springt von Kapitel zu Kapitel, wechselt ständig die Figur und fragt sich, wo die Handlung letztendlich landen mag. Meiner Meinung nach merkt man hier stark, dass „The Returned“ eigentlich eine TV-Serie ist, weil es sich anfühlt als würde jeder dieser Abschnitte einer Folge im Fernsehen entsprechen. 

Gemangelt hat es mir eindeutig an Spannung und Hintergrundinformationen. Diese unzähligen Perspektivenwechsel mögen vielleicht im TV funktionieren, für ein Buch finde ich es allerdings schlecht umgesetzt.

Jedenfalls soll hier nicht nur bekrittelt werden, weil es mir trotz der erwähnten Mängel gut gefallen hat. Ich mochte den gruseligen Unterton, die Idee, die hinter dem Roman liegt, die Figuren, die ich großteils als realistisch empfand, und das Ende, weil es Raum für eigene Gedanken gelassen hat. 

Für mich ist „The Returned“ eher ein ruhiger Gruselroman, der mit der grundlegenden Idee punkten kann, und sich gerade in der düsteren Jahreszeit gut lesen lässt.

Source: zeit-fuer-neue-genres.blogspot.co.at
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