Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Nevermore: Dear Edward, Confession Club, Doll Factory, Ghost Horse, Mobituries, The Fallen

Reported by Jeanne

Nevermore opened with a review of Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano.  Eddie is twelve when he boards the airplane with his family and a host of other passengers and crew.  The flight is doomed; it crashes, leaving only one survivor, Eddie, who becomes the focus of intense interest by the media.  He is taken in by his aunt and uncle and must try to build a new life for himself. The story moves between the flight and its aftermath, letting the reader learn about the other passengers.  Our reviewer loved it, saying that it is a coming of age story, but so much more.

Elizabeth Berg’s Confession Club was introduced next, a feel-good story set in a small Missouri town.  A group of women gathers each week to share stories about their lives and to support one another. Some of the characters were already familiar to those who had read the other books Berg had set in the same town (Night of Miracles and The Story of Arthur Truluv) but you don’t need to have read those to enjoy this one. 

Iris Whittle works as a painter of doll faces in 1850 London, but she wants to be a real artist.  Painter Louis Frost offers to exchange lessons if Iris will pose for him as a model. What neither knows is that Iris has caught the attention of someone else, someone who is becoming obsessed with her.  While our reviewer found The Doll Factory by Elizabeth MacNeal to be compelling, she warned that the story gets very dark and there is an ambiguous ending.

Ghost Horse of the Mounties by Sean O. Huigin is a narrative poem based on a true event, when a ferocious storm scattered a herd of horses.  Our reader was quite taken with this beautiful poem, advising others to skip the intro and to just “go with the flow.”  The poem has a strong rhythm to it, making it excellent for reading aloud.

Another book receiving rave reviews was Mobituaries, a collection of essays by Mo Rocca, in which he pays tribute to people (and some things) which he feels did not receive their due. Excellent research, witty comments, and compassion made this book a definite keeper—so much so that the patron is going to buy her own copy. While most of the subjects are famous (Thomas Paine, Audrey Hepburn), some are not, and some are not even human—the station wagon seems to be a favorite of the professional reviewers—but every entry is enjoyable.

A fictional treatment of the opioid epidemic is the basis of The Fallen by David Baldacci.  Series lead Amos Decker is visiting his FBI partner Alex’s family in Pennsylvania when tragedy strikes and the two find themselves involved in a complex mystery.  The reviewer appreciated the information about drug crisis and thought the book was worth reading.

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