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Search tags: Meg-Gardiner
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review 2018-12-28 17:01
The Blitz as a lived experience
The Blitz: The British Under Attack - Juliet Gardiner

For the British, there is perhaps no more iconic event of the 20th century than the Blitz. The German bombing campaign that stretched from September 1940 until June 1941 was an event that people experienced throughout the British isles, from London and the southeast to Belfast in Northern Ireland. As such it was a shared experience, albeit one filtered through the personal circumstances of the individual and their particular experience of the war. Yet for all of the specific moments in which the Blitz touched their lives, it was an inescapable experience for everyone,

 

Encapsulating this within the covers of a single book is just one of the challenges undertaken by Juliet Gardiner in writing a history of the event. Another is to penetrate the shared mythology of the event that has grown up around it over the decades in order to convey the realities of the experience and the response of its survivors. In both respects her book is an unqualified success, as she moves beyond the "keep calm and carry on" legend to convey a more nuanced portrait of how Britons coped. For while many rose to the challenge, others faltered in response to a crisis unprecedented in its nature. Its impact proved far-reaching, forcing adjustments to a situation that unfolded in ways few anticipated. Gardiner's coverage here is impressively comprehensive, addressing everything from the shifts in official policy to the problems of looting and other criminal activities it spawned.

 

All of this makes Gardiner's book an excellent read for anyone seeking to learn about the Blitz. Yet its greatest strength is its focus. For while Gardiner addresses the evolution of official policy in response to the attacks, her narrative is centered primarily upon the experiences of the people themselves. By drawing upon contemporary reporting, published accounts, and the oral histories collected years afterward, she provides her readers with a superb study that conveys well the broad impact of the Blitz and its legacy for British history. For as she argues, it was from this event more than any other of the war that the commitment to the postwar "New Jerusalem" was forged. In this respect, the Blitz left an imprint upon Britain in ways that are still visible today, decades after the last craters were filled and bombed sites rebuilt.

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text 2018-12-24 15:23
Reading progress update: I've read 97 out of 431 pages.
The Blitz: The British Under Attack - Juliet Gardiner

So I went with Gardiner's book on the Blitz, and it's proving to be an excellent read. After describing the first attack on 7 September she is now describing the issue of the shelters, and the contrast between official expectations and the reality for the people in them. So much interesting stuff!

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text 2018-12-22 14:12
Free to choose!
The Blitz: The British Under Attack - Juliet Gardiner

A couple of days ago, I posted about my post-semester, pre-trip review to-dos. Basically I had two reviews I needed to write before I left, a third that I wanted to write, and fourth that it would have been awesome to send out before I left. I had three down when I posted about it — and yesterday morning I sent off the fourth!

 

Now that they're done and with no podcasts scheduled for the immediate future, I have a rare opportunity for some completely self-directed reading. I started with a Doctor Who novel and I plan on reading a couple more, but the big question is what nonfiction book will I be taking with me on my trip. At this point I have it narrowed down to two choices: Chris Woolgar's history of the households of the medieval English elite, and Juliet Gardiner's book on the blitz. I'm leaning towards the latter (Gardiner is an absolutely amazing historian and I've greatly enjoyed her other books), but there's something about Woolgar's book that prevents me from committing to it.

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review 2018-11-25 01:21
This series is compellingly told in Audio format
Into the Black Nowhere: An UNSUB Novel - Meg Gardiner,Hillary Huber

 

๏ ๏ ๏  Book Blurb ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 
Inspired by real-life serial killer Ted Bundy, an exhilarating thriller in which FBI profiler Caitlin Hendrix faces off against a charming, merciless serial killer
 
In southern Texas, on Saturday nights, women are disappearing. One vanishes from a movie theater. Another is ripped from her car at a stoplight. Another vanishes from her home while checking on her baby. Rookie FBI agent Caitlin Hendrix, newly assigned to the FBI's elite Behavioral Analysis Unit, fears that a serial killer is roaming the dark roads outside Austin.
 
Caitlin and the FBI's serial crime unit discover the first victim's body in the woods. She's laid out in a bloodstained, white baby-doll nightgown. A second victim in a white nightie lies deeper in the forest's darkness. Both bodies are surrounded by Polaroid photos, stuck in the earth like headstones. Each photo pictures a woman in a white negligee, wrists slashed, suicide-style--posed like Snow White awaiting her prince's kiss. 
 
To track the UNSUB, Caitlin must get inside his mind. How is he selecting these women? Working with a legendary FBI profiler, Caitlin searches for a homology--that elusive point where character and action come together. She profiles a confident, meticulous killer who convinces his victims to lower their guard until he can overpower and take them in plain sight. He then reduces them to objects in a twisted fantasy--dolls for him to possess, control, and ultimately destroy. Caitlin's profile leads the FBI to focus on one man: a charismatic, successful professional who easily gains people's trust. But with only circumstantial evidence linking him to the murders, the police allow him to escape. As Saturday night approaches, Caitlin and the FBI enter a desperate game of cat and mouse, racing to capture the cunning predator before he claims more victims. 
 
 
 

๏ ๏ ๏  My Review ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 
 
If I rated for the intensity of the last third of the book, this would be an easy 5 Stars...but I deducted a little for not only the somewhat meandering pace at the beginning of the book but also for the awkward sections of the story where they delved into Caitlin's personal life...they didn't feel relatable to me.  Although, in the first book it worked just fine for me, maybe, it's due to the different locale???  
 
I love a good profiling case, I find it very intriguing.  I didn't know or remember any of the details of Ted Bundy's actual case, so I went into this basically blind.  I did, however, google it after I finished the book, and I can say there are similarities to that case, but lots of differences too.  Overall, I found the first book the best of the two, but I' m looking forward to the next book in the series.
 

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 

 

☆4.3☆STARS - GRADE=A-

 
 
 
 
 
 

๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏

 

Plot⇝ 4.2/5
Main Characters⇝ 4.3/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 4/5
The Feels⇝ 4.5/5
Pacing⇝ 3.8/5
Addictiveness⇝ 4.5/5
Intensity⇝ 4.2/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 5/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 4.7/5
Originality⇝ 4.2/5
Ending⇝ 4.7/5 Cliffhanger⇝ ...yeah.
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ Okayish
Narration⇝ ☆4.5☆ for Hilary Huber, she totally works for Caitlin Hendrix.
Series⇝ UNSUB #2
Setting⇝ Mostly Austin, TX
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
 
 
 
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review 2018-10-10 21:52
Into the Black Nowhere / Meg Gardiner
Into the Black Nowhere: An UNSUB Novel - Meg Gardiner

In southern Texas, on Saturday nights, women are disappearing. One vanishes from a movie theater. Another is ripped from her car at a stoplight. Another vanishes from her home while checking on her baby. Rookie FBI agent Caitlin Hendrix, newly assigned to the FBI's elite Behavioral Analysis Unit, fears that a serial killer is roaming the dark roads outside Austin.

Caitlin and the FBI's serial crime unit discover the first victim's body in the woods. She's laid out in a bloodstained, white baby-doll nightgown. A second victim in a white nightie lies deeper in the forest's darkness. Both bodies are surrounded by Polaroid photos, stuck in the earth like headstones. Each photo pictures a woman in a white negligee, wrists slashed, suicide-style--posed like Snow White awaiting her prince's kiss.

 

I read this book to fill the New Releases square of my 2018 Halloween Bingo card.

I read the first book in this series (UNSUB) last summer—it was an excellent summer book and I have been looking forward to this next step in the story. However, I’ve found myself a bit jaded with the mystery/thriller genre recently, so bear that in mind with my star rating of this book. For me, the stars reflect my personal reading experience, not an objective quality measurement and, as I say, I’m a bit off when it comes to this genre right now.

I was unsurprised to read on the dust jacket that this series is being made into a TV series. All the while I was reading, I was staging it in my mind’s eye to look like Criminal Minds! It reads like it is prepared to become a script. Looking at the GR description now, I see that this plot was based on Ted Bundy’s life of crime and I certainly notice the parallels now that I know to look for them. Using real-life details makes for a haunting plot.

So I was not at all startled when the book ended on a cliffhanger, obviously setting us up for the third book, due next year. I think I’ll be taking a hiatus from the thriller/serial killer category for a while, but I could see myself reading The Dark Corners of the Night eventually.

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