Posted in book review, books

a turtle’s eye view – the end of summer by j. tonzelli

disclaimer – i received a copy of this book via the goodreads first reads program in exchange for an honest review.

i’m a big fan of scary. books, movies, short stories, tv shows, i enjoy them all because i know they could never happen. let’s face it, the chances of me encountering a ghost are slim at best. and i’m (almost) positive that there will never be a zombie apocalypse. that’s not to say that i enjoy what seems to pass for horror these days – blood-fests, torture-porn, violence-gasms, those aren’t scary and they don’t count as horror. they’re just an excuse, in whatever form they take, to shock and disgust. real horror is visceral without being trashy or flashy. real horror is felt in the slight quickening of the pulse, the faint shiver on the back of the neck, the slowly increasing sense of unease.

all of that is just my way of telling you why i enjoyed the end of summer: thirteen tales of halloween as much as i did. you can tell from reading the prologue that j. tonzelli not only loves halloween, he gets it and he gets the point of telling a scary story. this book is, at its core, a love letter to halloween and it works. it’s got funny halloween, sad halloween, pensive halloween, redeeming halloween, and terrifying halloween, and tonzelli didn’t spill a single unnecessary drop of blood at any point.

four out of five stars

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Posted in book review, books

a turtle’s eye view – after i’m gone by laura lippman

disclaimer – i won an advanced reader’s copy of this novel through goodreads’ first reads program.

in 1976, felix brewer disappeared leaving behind a wife, three daughters, a mistress, and a conviction and prison sentence. ten years later, almost to the day, brewer’s mistress disappeared only to be subsequently found dead. now a retired detective who consults on closed cases is reopening the mistress’ murder case and no one will walk away from the case unscathed.

after i’m gone by laura lippman is a fast read with a decent story but i never really got to the point that i cared who actually committed the crime. the story shifts back and forth between the current investigation and the lives of the women that felix brewer left behind, beginning with his meeting bambi (his wife). i never really felt a vested interested in any of the characters, instead just drifting through the story trying to keep track of the years and who was who. i never was able to keep the two oldest daughters separate and found myself flipping back and forth to make the years line up in my head.

two out of five stars

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a turtle’s eye view – notes from the internet apocalypse by wayne gladstone

disclaimer – i won an advanced reader’s copy of this novel through goodreads’ first reads program.

how would you handle the loss of the internet? not just a brief outage, but a complete and total shutdown for an unknown reason. think about it – no goodreads, no bloggess, no twitter. in notes from the internet apocalypse that’s exactly what happens and the world goes crazy. there are “zombie” groups in new york trying to fill the gaping holes left in their lives. and out of this darkness comes a prophet with news of a saviour. an internet messiah who will bring the ‘net back.

let’s be clear, i was expecting something completely different from wayne gladstone‘s novel. satire, biting humour, the overarching question of what we would do if the internet went away, i was prepared for all of that. what i wasn’t expecting was a story that would leave me heartbroken. a story that would actually have me questioning the ways i use the internet. a story that really made me look at the differences between the people i called my friends a decade ago and the people i call my friends now. gladstone’s novel is social commentary with an unexpected soul.

four out of five stars