Reading Life


Friday, April 29, 2016

The Edgars

On April 28, 2016, Mystery Writers of America announced the winners of the 2016 Edgar Allan Poe Awards. Let Me Die In His Footsteps by Lori Roy was awarded "best novel."

Best first novel by an American author went to Viet Thahn Nguyen for his novel, The Sympathizer.

Best paperback original went to Lou Berney's The Long and Faraway Gone.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Pie by Sarah Weeks

When Alice's Aunt Polly dies suddenly, Alice's world crumbles. The two had always enjoyed a close relationship and spent hours baking pies in Aunt Polly's pie shop. 

To her surprise, Aunt Polly bequeaths her disagreeable cat, Lardo, to her. The secret pie crust that has made the town famous goes, incredibly, to Lardo! But who would leave a pie crust recipe to a cat!

In the meantime, someone breaks into Aunt Polly's pie shop that is appropriately named Pie. The whole pie shop is damaged. Alice and Charlie try to solve the mystery of the pie shop break-in as well as the strange recipe bequeathment.

While solving these mysteries, Alice also attempts to figure out who she is and why her mother acts the way she does.

This is a delightful story for young readers who enjoy humor and small town mysteries.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma

This dark novel is a stand-out for its superb characterization and its exciting narrative pace.

Unlike most superheroes, Ruby is supremely narcissistic. While at first she merely seems to be able to get boys to like her and dominate others, her powers begin to wreak havoc.

Chloe slowly realizes her sister has a strange connection to the Ashokan reservoir. Years ago, the Ashokan reservoir was built to give New York a water drinking supply. In the process, however, nine towns, including Olive, were intentionally flooded.

Townspeople were given plenty of warning but some refused to leave. 

Ruby displays the same kind of arrogance; treating her mother, friends, and boyfriends with disdain. None of the local cops will ticket her. Her workplace looks the other way when she pinches candy.

Despite her unsavory qualities, Ruby will do anything to protect her little sister, Chloe, even if it means becoming involved in supernatural activities.

Nova Ren Suma's website:

Sunday, April 3, 2016

My Beautiful Broken Brain: a Netflix documentary

After a young woman has a stroke, cerebral hemorrhage, she has a hard time adjusting to everyday life. Her vision is distorted in one eye, giving her surreal-like  visions. Her reading and writing abilities are impacted. 

Before her stroke she was a film producer in England. Perhaps this is why she's determined to record her entire experience on film.Though she may never recover completely, Lotje discovers an  inner strength she didn't have before.

A visual letter she sent to David Lynch prompts him to become a co-producer of the film, along with Sophie Robinson.

This is a must-see inspriation story for anyone who enjoys documentaries about life-changing events.

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