March Micro-Reviews

B3E3A2C5-0519-43D8-B4ED-A873A61490E8The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

This has to be one of the cleverest stories I’ve read in years. It’s a little slow to start, but once it takes off, it’s OFF! Imagine you wake up in someone else’s body and discover you are trapped into living the same day over for 8 days and in 8 different bodies until you can solve the murder of Evelyn Hardcastle. If you can’t solve it in 8 days, you’re doomed to live those 8 days over and over. The deft writing and imaginative, complicated plot make this a surefire hit with those who enjoy a little challenge with their mystery. Ultimately, the plot reminded me of Dante’s Circles of Hell. Blackheath would be one of them.

It’s scheduled for U.S. release in September 2018. Highly recommended.

Publication Date: September 4, 2018
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Thanks to NetGalley for the advanced copy

17D05D96-42C4-4068-8FE4-DC6128B070FEThe Phantom Tree by Nicola Cornick

Cornick has delivered another fascinating blend of history, mystery, romance, and time-travel, this time bridging the present time to Elizabethan England. As usual, her research lends an accurate-as-possible element to the story upon which she builds a multi-layered, human-centered tale that captivates the reader straight through. Cornick has a knack for bringing historical characters to life and imagining their daily lives – their routines, their friendships and rivalries, their heartbreak. This story especially brought attention to the restrictive lives led by women, who were less than nothing in the hierarchy of family, friends, and society, which makes this an excellent selection for book clubs. Recommended.

Publication Date: August 21, 2018
Publisher: Graydon House
Thanks to NetGalley for the advance copy

660FA8CC-E23D-422E-832D-E1668457F7B5Voices From the Rust Belt by Anne Trubek

Having lived most of my life on the edge of what this book calls the “Rust Belt,” I found these stories at once poignant, heartbreaking, hopeful, and personal. The disappearance of well-paying manufacturing jobs has decimated once thriving cities, towns, and villages and scarred generations of men and women who thought they could achieve the American Dream by working hard and staying loyal. They were wrong. Anne Trubek has done a masterful job of giving voice to people who lost their voices when they were sold out by Big Business and, in my husband’s case, Unions. This was a hard book to read because so many of these stories are similar to those of my family and friends. Recommended.

Publication Date: April 3, 2018
Publisher: Picador
Thanks to NetGalley for the advance copy


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