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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-08-21 09:35
Die Perspektive des Gärtners von Hakan Nesser
Die Perspektive des Gärtners: Roman - Håkan Nesser

16 Monate nach dem Verschwinden der 4-jährigen Tochter Sarah zieht das Paar Winnie und Erik nach New York.

 

Der Roman ist aus der Sicht von Erik in der Ich-Form geschrieben. Er versucht, mit autobiographischen Gedanken der Tragödie Herr zu werden, denn er war Zeuge, als seine Tochter in den Wagen eines anderen stieg. Und er versucht auch, die Verbindung zur psychisch nicht stabilen Winnie nicht zu verlieren, die behauptet, dass Sarah noch lebt, die aber vor Jahren auch schon eine Tochter verloren hat.

 

Auch hier wird man in die Dynamik vollständig hineingesogen, und die Geschichte wird mehr Familiendrama als Kriminalroman. Hintergründe und Zufälle steuern die handelnden Personen, und durch die Ich-Perspektive weiß der Leser nie mehr als Erik (auch wenn man natürlich Vermutungen anstellen kann). Spannend, bedrückend, lesenswert.

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review 2018-08-18 12:29
A Can of Peas (Lake Emily, Book 1)
A Can of Peas - Traci Depree
I really enjoyed this book. It's about a young man named Peter whose grandfather just passed away. He has many fond memories of helping his grandfather on the farm in Minnesota and wonders why his father didn't stay there to take over the farm. He resents his father, who is a musician, for always moving around while he was growing up and for missing his grandfather's funeral. Peter is between jobs and he and his new wife Mae are staying in her parents basement, which hasn't been ideal. Mae's mom doesn't think Peter is good enough for her and Mae ends up leaving with their mother-daughter relationship in ruins. Peter's Grandmother mentioned one day that her husband Roy had always hoped someone in the family would take over the farm and Peter thinks that is what he wants to do. He talks to his wife and his grandmother and they decide on a trial period to see how it goes. Mae finds out very quickly that outsiders have a hard time fitting in with small town folks where everyone knows everyone's business. Peter loves farming but has a hard time keeping up and is worried about paying back his operating loan. The story continues to tell of some of their trials on the farm. 

I really like how the author inserted short chapters in italics that tell a small story from the past just before a chapter where that person is involved in the present. That allows the reader to get to know the people in the small town and how they relate to one another. You learn a little bit of history right when you need to. The stories are very well written and make you feel for the people in the story. After reading this book you are left wondering what's next and there are two more books "Dandelions in a jelly jar" and "aprons on a clothesline". 

This isn't just a book about farming. It's about being new and and trying to fit in where newcomers aren't welcome. It's about love.... and family. It's about coming through difficult times unscathed and knowing you are not alone in the world.
 
 

 

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review 2018-08-18 09:14
FUN HOME by Alison Bechdel
Fun Home - Alison Bechdel
Growing up in a small town when you are different is not easy.  Add a father who seems to be so exacting, a mother who is intent on her thesis and her theater productions, and siblings who are into their own things makes it harder.  Alison knows she does not like the feminine clothing her father wants her to wear and their house is, as her mother later calls it, a mausoleum.  At times there are moments when she and her father are close, usually around books.  Coming out in college, she must now come home for her father's funeral.
 
This story resonated with me.  I could identify with Alison.  Though they are a family, there is a disconnect between them.  Each person is into their own thing.  No one seems to be there for one another.  I don't know how this family remained together.  There are memories that come out during the book.  They may provide clues to the father's lifestyle but, for Alison, there is no more to them than the face value at the time.  Later she can see the pattern and realize her father thought she knew about him.  There is so many lost opportunities in this family for them to become closer.  I felt sorry for them all.
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review 2018-08-16 18:11
Better Late Than Never - Kimberla Lawson Roby

 

 

Better Late Than Never is the 15th and final installment of the Rev. Curtis Black series.  

 

When Rev. Black receives an alarming telephone call that his sister, who he hasn’t had any contact with in decades is gravely ill, he rushes to be by her side.  As he spends as much time with her as possible old, disturbing memories of his childhood begin to surface.

 

Meanwhile, 12-year-old Curtina’s attitude toward her parents start to change.  She turns into a disrespectful and deceitful preteen full of resentment.

 

Now that Charlotte and Rev. Black are in a good place in their marriage and with their children, a sense of unfulfillment takes control which may cause her to resort to her old ways.

 

I found this installment to be less dramatic and over the top as the previous novels in the series.  I emotionally connected to some of the experiences in the story. At times when describing the relationships with the older children characters it was too “sugary sweet.”  

 

I must say, in Kimberla Lawson Roby’s style, there’s always a lesson about forgiveness, hope and redemption.  This series was fun and dramatically charged. I believe this series will be missed by many readers, however I sense  a series based on Curtina.

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review 2018-08-16 06:50
Fun running over tropes
Northanger Abbey - Jane Austen,Marilyn Butler,Claire Lamont

Why did I take this long to read this? From Austen's big six, this is the last I got to. I mean, I know what my reasoning was: satire and humour was not what I was looking for when I searched for an Austen volume. But I was wrong to, because this was a great romp.

 

(On that note, one day I have to write long and hard on how the prominence of Pride and Prejudice in pop-media puts an expectation on what Austen writes about that is a total disservice to her body of work)

 

If you put this and Persuasion together, it's impossible to ignore that the woman's common thread is not romance, but social critique, and tropes and expectations. In this one she takes Gothic literature ones, and more than run with them, runs them over. Anne Brontë kinda did that in a very understated way. There is nothing understated here, and I was laughing from the opening lines alone... Actually, the overall initial setting is quite similar to Brontë's Agnes Grey's opening, just, you know, absolutely savage. Much like the whole book.

 

The charming part comes from Catherine being a sincerely good-natured soul, and pretty sensible on the whole, so even where she hypes herself from much sensational reading (and hell, like nobody ever got jumpy in the night after reading or watching some horror), and builds some weird fantasies on it, she never quite finds herself carried away on over-dramatic feelings of angst, be it romantic or otherwise. Even when other characters ask about them on hilariously detailed, over the top descriptions.

 

I get now why it is the favourite Austen among many. I had lots of fun with it.

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