Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Nevermore: Tattooist, Mars, Bone Clocks, Mosquito, Big Sky, Past Tense, Everything I Never Told You

Reported by Laura

           The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris is a beautiful love story set in the most horrific circumstances you can possibly imagine. Lale Sokolov arrives in Auschwitz and is given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival. It’s love at first sight when Gita comes through his line and he resolves to save them both. The reviewer thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommends it.

            Packing for Mars by Mary Roach is a fascinating look at what astronauts go through to get ready to go back to space. Written in her usual humorous style, from the space shuttle training toilet to a crash test of NASA’s space capsule with cadaver filling in for astronaut, this book doesn’t disappoint. The reviewer found it interesting and funny.

            Set in small town Ohio during the 70’s, Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng explores the struggles within families as well as between cultures. The father is a respected professor and the mother endeavors to live her unfulfilled dreams through her children. Each child is facing struggles of their own, but when the “favorite” daughter commits suicide, the entire family is torn apart. Our reviewer enjoyed this book.

            The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell focuses on Holly Sykes, a 15 year-old in a relationship with an older man. She leaves home after arguing with her mother and finding her boyfriend with her best friend, then begins work as a picker on a strawberry farm to survive. Holly is a lightning rod for psychic phenomena having heard voices she knew as “the radio people” while still a child. The farther she travels into the English countryside, the more intensive her visions become. The reviewer says that the book tends to jump from one character to another, but then ties them all together at the end. She recommends the book and this awesome author, who also wrote Cloud Atlas.

            The nonfiction book, The Mosquito by Timothy C. Winegard, explains how the mosquito has been the single most powerful force in determining humankind’s fate. From the Civil War to today, the resiliency and dangers of the mosquito have changed the course of history. There is no really effective treatment against mosquitos, even DTT was ineffective while still being used. The reviewer found this book to be really fascinating and wished she could read it again and again!

            Big Sky by Kate Atkinson is the latest in the Jackson Brodie mystery series. This offering covers the difficult topic of human trafficking. A group of men in London advertise for well-paying jobs. When young women answer the ads, they are chained and used. The reviewer enjoyed the book and felt it had enough compassionate characters to outweigh the bad so that the subject matter wasn’t too overwhelming.

            The last book discussed was Past Tense by Lee Child which is part of the Jack Reacher series. Reacher decides to explore the small town in New Hampshire where his father grew up, but when he arrives, no one has ever heard of any family by that name ever living there. As he investigates, he befriends a Canadian couple who have broken down in the same area and become mired in lethal dangers. As usual, Reacher comes to the rescue in his own indomitable style . The reviewer found this book intriguing and didn’t want to stop reading it.

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