Truly Madly Guilty

Truly Madly Guilty, by Liane Moriarty, is a treasure found on the sale shelves of the local library. I have to admit, part of the reason I bought the book is because of the author’s name–what bibliophile wouldn’t want to read a book by Moriarty?

Six adults, three children, and one dog all go to a barbecue together. While there, something unspeakable happens. Something that effects each person in different ways and threatens to pull apart lifelong friendships and ruin marriages.

Liane Moriarty does an excellent job portraying each of these individual characters as individuals. Almost every character in this book, if they have more than one scene, becomes the point of view character at one point or another, but it’s never confusing. It’s told third person limited, with these alternating points of view, and I fell into the heads of each character as I read their individual chapters.

The book also alternates between flashback and present day, with “The day of the barbeque” in front of the flashbacks. In this way, little after little of what actually happened that day is interspersed with the characters dealing with the aftermath and trauma. In this way, the reveal takes place almost entirely over the course of the book, and we learn intimately about each character.

I love how Liane Moriarty leaves little clues as to what happened scattered throughout the book before the reveal. And let me tell you, dear reader, I was so sure I figured it out. I practically gloated when I picked up a phrase here, a reaction there, an exclusion there, in the present-day chapters. And then…and then…

I was wrong. Yup, I had picked up on all these clues, and gotten some minor details right, but the big, all-important, “What happened on the day of the barbecue?” I was dead wrong.

I’d encourage you to go to your bookstore, or your public library, and request or purchase a copy of this book. Written in a similar style as a whodunnit murder mystery, but with much more emphasis on the inner lives of the characters, it is full of heart, heartache, and was obviously a labor of love.


Long Lankin

Said my lord to my lady as he mounted his horse: “Beware of Long Lankin that lives in the moss.”

Said my lord to my lady as he rode away: “Beware of Long Lankin that lives in the hay.

“Let the doors be all bolted and the windows all pinned, And leave not a hole for a mouse to creep in.” Continue reading “Long Lankin”

The Stars Are Legion

Of all the books in my backlogged review pile, The Stars Are Legion, by Kameron Hurley, is the one I think about the most. I used to read a lot (well, a bit) of sci-fi–mostly Anne McCaffrey and Isaac Asimov, and I’ve watched my fair share of sci-fi movies (well, some. Lots of trailers. Lots of speculative fiction that blurs the lines sometimes). And The Stars Are Legion feels like nothing I’ve read before. Honestly, it’s weird enough I’d be more likely to find its world in a manga than in Western sci-fi, with rich characters and themes that make you think a lot more than the current fantastical sci-fi blockbusters.

Continue reading “The Stars Are Legion”

Akata Witch

You guys! I am so behind in my book reviews! I’ve read three books since my last review, and have been hesitant to pick up another book until I finish my reviews. Which means I don’t get to read awesome books. So here I am, hoping to catch up while baby and husband sleep. After all, if I’m stuck in a hotel room while everyone else is sleeping and storms are looming (and there’s no spa or anything), I might as well write reviews.

Hopefully I can do justice to each book, since it’s been so long since I’ve read them.

Nnedi Okorafor (Hugo award winner for Best Novella for Binti) is an author I found via Twitter (have I mentioned how awesome Book Twitter is lately? Because it is awesome), and one book I kept seeing was Akata Witch. When it went on sale on Kindle, I decided to snatch it up. (I technically don’t have a budget for books, but I do try to limit my book purchases. I’ve been burned too often) Continue reading “Akata Witch”

A Reaper at the Gates

Okay peeps, this is more as a record that I finished all of Sabaa Tahir’s Ember books rather than a proper review because I don’t like writing spoilers! Especially on books I love.

The Ember books are incredible. I really mean it. After I finished Harry Potter, I spent years trying to find a book series that could fill that hole in my life (and upon rereading the Harry Potter books, I’ve come to realize they are not all created equal. But that’s a blog post for another day). The Dresden Files is one such series, as I’ve mentioned before. So are Sabaa Tahir’s Ember in the Ashes novels. Continue reading “A Reaper at the Gates”

The Church of Dead Girls

the church of dead girls

It was one of those rare books that grabbed me from the very first moment, the very first sentence.  I’d found this book at a thrift store, or maybe a library book sale.  I forget which.  But I’d held onto it because, according to the cover, Stephen King said it was, “Very rich, very scary, very satisfying.”

And People Magazine had said, “Tantalizingly sinister…Dobyns hooks us from the very first sentence.”

And New York Daily News promised, “It’s unlikely there will be a better novel this season than The Church of Dead Girls.”

Did…did we read the same book?

I mean, sure, the prologue of The Church of Dead Girls, by Stephen Dobyns, was spellbinding, and the first half of the first chapter was great, but after that…well, I felt like doing this the entire time: Continue reading “The Church of Dead Girls”

A Torch Against the Night

torch cover

Hello, 2019! A new year, a new chance to read and write a bajillion book reviews! Seeing how few times I wrote a book review last year, I…um…have a goal to read and review at least twelve books this year.  Yeah…just twelve.  I know, I know, some people read seventy books in a single year and then crow about it on Goodreads.  But I…I’m a lot slower.  I used to be able to read a book a week, just by taking Saturdays and devouring an entire 400-page book in a single sitting, but now I can’t.

I blame Twitter. Continue reading “A Torch Against the Night”