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review 2020-03-28 04:26
Audio Review: Lucky Inheritance (Inherit Love) by McKenna James (author), Patricia Satomasso (narrator), Sean Patrick Hopkins (narrator)
Lucky Inheritance (Inherit Love) - McKenna James,Sean Patrick Hopkins,Patricia Santomasso

 

 

Hopkins and Satomasso are quite a pair. From heart palpitations to the ever present frustration, they refused to hold back on the chemistry. Their delivery is flameworthy. McKenna James dishes out the emotions with her ever present flair and as always I was easily hooked. Lucky Inheritance sets emotions ablaze with passion, heart and humor.

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review 2020-02-04 15:35
Satisfying Satire
The Heap - Sean Adams

The Heap by Sean Adams is recalls the type of winking political and societal satire presented in works by Vonnegut and Pyncheon, or in the film “Brazil” by Terry Gilliam.  Adam’s novel wittily reflects the mindlessness and vapidity of our modern age within an alternative universe controlled by a corrupt bureaucracy that takes advantage of people’s worst tendencies.  The story is simple but unusual- Orville is a man searching for his brother among the ruins of a collapsed building.  “Los Verticalés” was originally designed as a type of utopian community, an enormous ever-expanding tower meant to provide everything people would need for existence within one self-contained structure. The Heap takes place after the building’s inevitable collapse, becoming a tale of the stalled rescue of the lone survivor of the tragedy, Bernard.  Orville’s brother is still within the rubble, broadcasting continuously from his radio station and taking calls from the outside. The building’s original architects have enlisted people to conduct the search as they also unearth and sell off salvageable items. A whole community has sprung up around the effort, including: the diggers and an administrative support system; small businesses to provide amenities; and a band of people who once lived in the tower, having escaped the tragedy by not being home when the collapse occurred.  These are the “displaced,” who write about what life was like in Los Verticalés, providing the reader some vital background information about the social experiment. Most of The Heap consists of Adams describing how the evolved community has established its own routines and fallen into a state of passive ennui over time.  Lydia, one of Orville’s dig partners, is the only character who possesses political ambitions and is therefore consistently frustrated by the reluctance of others to change or put forth extra effort. Other secondary characters become allegories for human adaptation to loss and the drive toward comfort even if freedom must be sacrificed.  It takes a bit too long, but eventually events occur that shake up the plodding existence of the Heap and its inhabitants- challenging them to stand up to the menacing corporate cabal that wants them to continue succumbing to their stupor.  Orville, with his uniquely emotional connection to the place, is responsible for rebelling against the underlying power structure. His reluctant awareness and subsequent actions result in some unexpected and humorous ripple effects.  Strange and sometimes slow-paced, The Heap is an interesting experiment in storytelling.  Though probably not universally appealing, readers who are searching for something unique, smile-provoking and subtly pointed would do well to give this new novel a try.

 

Thanks to the author, William Morrow and Library Thing for an advance copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review.

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review 2020-01-17 17:10
Less
Less: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2018 - Andrew Sean Greer

I have no idea how I feel about this. I wasn't super impressed. I liked it okay but not enough to say "here, you have to read this" to anyone. Less was borderline spineless, always getting cut off mid sentence and never standing up for himself. And then the ending was like How I Met Your Mother. Really? That's how this all ends? Bah.

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text 2020-01-17 03:07
Reading progress update: I've read 80%.
Less: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2018 - Andrew Sean Greer

I don't know if I love or hate Less. 

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text 2020-01-16 20:18
Reading progress update: I've read 48%.
Less: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2018 - Andrew Sean Greer

It's bad. I stress when work is so busy because I never have a chance to catch my breath. Well, right now it's the opposite. I'm stressing because we aren't  busy, and you need business to keep the doors open. Today, I worked alone from 6am to about 8:40. I filled 5 orders, all for 2 people or less. I did some prep, then i read for a while, then i did more prep, then back to reading. Then my anxiety spurred me to get up and DO something, so I cleaned and degreased a sink, set up the dish pit, and tinkered with organizing things on the prep table. Then back to reading until my boss came in to relieve me. Lord, it was dull. 

 

Anyway, the book. I can see why everyone liked this. It's witty and well written. I just question Less's decision making. People keep giving him random pills at clubs or recommending drugs that he promptly looks for and takes. Maybe because I'm not in the drug culture and I've had really bad experiences with addiction. Anything but pot upsets me. I lost a cousin to heroin. He was a mule, and a balloon popped in his stomach while he was transporting the stuff across from Tijuana. (No, I swear to God, that is true. I went to his funeral when I was 17.) So drugs being casually accepted and taken without question just....unsettle me.

 

Other than that, I can completely identify with this man. He's like a Male gay me.

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