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Review: The Original 1982 by Lori Carson

Original 1982My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

There were many things I did like about this book, but some aspects didn’t quite jell for me.

Summary via Goodreads:

It’s 1982, and Lisa is twenty-four years old, a waitress, an aspiring singer-songwriter, and girlfriend to a famous Latin musician. That year, she makes a decision, almost without thinking about it.

But what if what if her decision had been a different one?

In the new 1982, Lisa chooses differently. Her career takes another direction. She becomes a mother. She loves differently, yet some things remain the same.

Alternating between two very different possibilities, The Original 1982 is a novel about how the choices we make affect the people we become-and about how the people we are affect the choices we make.

The first thing that intrigued me was the premise of life done differently. The first book I encountered that suggested this approach was Penelope Lively’s Making it Up, which was well written and interesting, but didn’t deliver on that promise to me. The Original 1982 does that, presenting the choice that changes things, and marking out a new path (and comparing it to the old) that follows that decision.

I liked Lisa, the main character, in both versions of her life, and both paths were interesting, and completely different than any life I’ve seen.. She was surrounded by people that I wanted to get to know, and a few I didn’t, but I liked reading about anyway. I enjoyed the author’s writing. The book was written as a letter to a daughter that never was, and that choice resonated with me.

My biggest problem was that I wanted more, from both of the paths. Big issues were touched on, then the story moved on. Relationships were introduced, but not explored.

The second problem was that I didn’t entirely buy the new path, and I can’t tell if that was deliberate. Was I learning from this that Lisa is deceiving herself about what her life would have been like, or did the author fail to construct a life I could buy into? How much is the original life based on the author’s real life, and is the new life her personal wish, or does it belong only to the character of Lisa?

I enjoyed reading the book, and I’d love to have the chance to argue some of these questions with someone else that read it– I think it would be a very interesting book club choice.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour, and was provided a copy of the book to read and review.  For other opinions on this book, visit the other tour stops:
TLC Book Tours

 
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Posted by on June 11, 2013 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: A Complicated Marriage: My Life With Clement Greenberg by Janice Van Horn

Complicated MarriageMy rating: 3.5 stars– 3 stars for the first half, 4 stars for the second half.

Summary via Goodreads:

In 1955, Jenny Van Horne was a 21-year-old, naïve Bennington College graduate on her own for the first time in New York City. She meets 46-year-old Clement Greenberg who, she is told, is “the most famous, the most important, art critic in the world!” Knowing nothing about art, she soon finds herself swept into Clem’s world and the heady company of Hans Hofmann, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, David Smith, Helen Frankenthaler, among others. Seven months later, as a new bride, Jenny and Clem spend the summer in East Hampton near Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner, and she feels even more keenly like an interloper in the inner circle of the art scene. A woman disowned by her anti-Semitic family for marrying a Jew, she would develop a deep, loving bond with Clem that would remain strong through years of an open marriage and separate residences.

Jenny embodies the pivotal changes of each passing decade as she searches for worlds of her own. She moves from the tradition of wife and mother to rebellion and experimentation; diving into psychoanalysis; the theater world of OOB and the Actors’ Studio; and succeeding in business. Throughout, A Complicated Marriage is grounded in honesty and the self-deprecating humor, grace, and appealing voice of its author.

I picked this book for review because it reminded me of Patti Smith’s Just Kids. It wasn’t until I started reading it, and realized how strong the resemblance is, that I remembered I didn’t love Just Kids.

Particularly for the first half of the book, the resemblance was strong. There was an odd distance between the narrator and the events she described. There were a lot of mentions of friendships and parties with people I knew nothing about– and I know even less about the art world than the music world. The only familiar name in A Complicated Marriage is that of Jackson Pollock.

While I didn’t dislike the book at first, it also didn’t really click for me, I just didn’t get drawn in. That changed about halfway through– while it took more than a week to get through that first half, I read most of the second half in one day, and didn’t have to struggle to get around to the last piece.

Once the author came into herself, the book became interesting in and of itself. The time she spent in the theater world, the exploration of the complicated aspects of her marriage, the relationships she built at this time, all these mature. I think some of her distance in telling about them may have gone as well, but whatever the reason, I enjoyed it far more at this point.

I came out of the book with a little more understanding of the personal side of the American art world in the second half of the last century, some insight as to how an open marriage could work for some people, and a look at a girl who grew into a very interesting woman.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour, and was provided a copy of the book for review.  Thank you for this opportunity.  You can find out more about Janice Van Horn at her website.  For other perspectives on A Complicated Marriage, check out the other stops on the tour:

Tuesday, May 14th: Turn the Page

Wednesday, May 15th: Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews

 

 
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Posted by on May 31, 2013 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: The Cottage At Glass Beach by Heather Barbieri

Cottage at glass beachMy rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This book had solid characters in a great setting, unfortunately the ending knocked down the rating for me.

Summary via Goodreads:

Married to the youngest attorney general in Massachusetts state history, Nora Cunningham is a picture-perfect political wife and a doting mother. But her carefully constructed life falls to pieces when she, along with the rest of the world, learns of the infidelity of her husband, Malcolm.

Humiliated and hounded by the press, Nora packs up her daughters–Annie, seven; and Ella, twelve–and takes refuge on Burke’s Island, a craggy spit of land off the coast of Maine. Settled by Irish immigrants, the island is a place where superstition and magic are carried on the ocean winds, and wishes and dreams wash ashore with the changing tides.

Nora spent her first five years on the island but has not been back to the remote community for decades–not since that long ago summer when her mother disappeared at sea. One night while sitting alone on Glass Beach below the cottage where she spent her childhood, Nora succumbs to grief, her tears flowing into the ocean. Days later she finds an enigmatic fisherman named Owen Kavanagh shipwrecked on the rocks nearby. Is he, as her aunt’s friend Polly suggests, a selkie–a mythical being of island legend–summoned by her heartbreak, or simply someone who, like Nora, is trying to find his way in the wake of his own personal struggles?

Just as she begins to regain her balance, her daughters embark on a reckless odyssey of their own–a journey that will force Nora to find the courage to chart her own course and finally face the truth about her marriage, her mother, and her long-buried past.:

The bones of this book are standard women’s fiction– a woman struggling to come to terms with her husband’s infidelity, and what that means for their marriage. This aspect of the story is handled well, particularly where it looks at the effect on the children, but there isn’t anything compelling or unusual about it.

Where the book comes into its own is when it is dealing with the island that Nora returns to, the island she used to call home. The people, the history, and how they all interrelate with the stories of the past added interest to the books, and distinguished it from many other good books exploring the same basic story. There is a touch of magical realism here, some question as to what is myth and what is real, and I thought that was nicely done through most of the book.

As I mentioned at the beginning, I wasn’t satisfied by the ending, but that may be a personal taste issue. The other thing that dragged this book down a bit in my estimation is that bits and pieces of it, particularly the mythological parts, reminded me of The Salt God’s Daughter by Ilie Ruby, which was a much richer book.

Still, this was an enjoyable light read, and I’m glad to have read it.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour.  Thank you for the opportunity to participate.  For other opinions of this book, check out the other tour stops:
TLC Book Tours

 
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Posted by on May 9, 2013 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: Something About Sophie by Mary Kay McComas

Something About Sophie by Mary Kay McComasMy rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Mystery meets chick lit?

Summary via Goodreads:

Clearfield, Virginia, is a sleepy, idyllic hamlet where residents welcome its comfortable, familiar routines. But when a newcomer arrives in town, long-buried secrets threaten to surface and destroy their haven . . .

Answering a call that summons her to a stranger’s deathbed, a reluctant Sophie Shepard is too late to hear what he was so anxious to tell her. What was so important that a dying man would think of her in his final moments? With the help of Dr. Drew McCarren, Sophie begins to dig into her past, setting off a chain of events that chills the quiet town of Clearfield, Virginia, to its roots.

With part of her wanting nothing more than to put Clearfield behind her and run back home, Sophie knows she won’t rest until she discovers the truth. But growing closer to the residents also means uncovering their dark secrets–secrets about the woman who gave Sophie up for adoption, the mysterious part these strangers played, and the life she never knew she nearly had.

There’s something odd about this book, that gets a little odder the more I think about it.  It’s a mismatch between the tone and the events in the book.

The thing is, I like sweet, good-natured women’s fiction. I mentioned this in my recent review of Robyn Carr’s The Wanderer. This book out-nices Carr in many ways, particularly the sweet Kindergarten teacher of a main character. She’s never been curious about her birth parents, because she loves her adoptive parents so much. And now she’s in a small town where everyone knows one another, and she’s making friends fast.

Then there’s the mystery, which starts out much like a cozy mystery– the bad stuff, including a murder, happens off-screen, with vague threats impinging on our heroine’s activities. I like cozy mysteries, so this is good as well. The book is a little more about the character and less about the who-dunnit, and Sophie isn’t all that involved in trying to find the bad guy or guys.

But then the last section of the book happens, and it gets grittier, with more details on much more unpleasant occurrences (yes, even more unpleasant than murder). And that’s fine with me as well, but it seems out of place compared to the rest of the book.

Overall, I liked the characters, even if they all seemed a little cartoonish. I thought the plot was well constructed.  The romance was cute, even if I didn’t really see the steam. Overall, I enjoyed reading Something About Sophie.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour.  Thank you to TLC for providing me with a copy of this book for review.  If you’d like other opinions on Something About Sophie, check out the other tour stops:
TLC Book Tours

 
5 Comments

Posted by on April 11, 2013 in books, reviews, tour, Uncategorized

 

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Review: The Missing File by D.A. Mishani

Missing FileMy rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

For me, the strength of this book was its uniqueness. Partially the Israeli flavor, partially the writer himself, I haven’t read anything else that has the same feel, and that’s enough to get me back for the next book when it comes out.

Summary via Goodreads:

Detective Avraham Avraham must find a teenage boy who has vanished from his quiet suburban neighborhood.

Police detective Avraham Avraham knows that when a crime is committed in his sleepy suburb of Tel Aviv, there is little need for a complex investigation. There are no serial killers or kidnappings here. The perpetrator is usually the neighbor, the uncle, or the father. As he has learned, the simplest explanation is always the answer.

But his theory is challenged when a sixteen-year-old boy named Ofer Sharabi disappears without a trace while on his way to school one morning. There is no simple explanation, and Avraham’s ordered world is consumed by the unimaginable perplexity of the case.

The more he finds out about the boy and his circumstances, the further out of reach the truth seems to be. Avraham’s best lead is Ofer’s older neighbor and tutor, Ze’ev Avni. Avni has information that sheds new light on the case—and makes him a likely suspect. But will the neighbor’s strange story save the investigation?

The mystery itself– a missing boy– is interesting enough, with sufficient twists and turns to keep the story going. I also enjoyed the character of Avraham Avraham, the neurotic young police detective. He’s a big part of the uniqueness I mentioned. The book was a good introduction to him, with enough depth to show the potential for future growth and development.

Unfortunately, I also had some problems with the book. The first one, which was more of a problem in the first half of the book, was the other viewpoint character. Ze’ev Avni is a neurotic young schoolteacher, and his character had too similar of a feel to that of Avraham. This isn’t helped by some characters referring to Avraham as Avi, while Ze’ev is often called Avni. The problem isn’t that I got the characters confused, it’s that I like alternating viewpoints to offer more of a contrast.

The other problem was one with the flow of the progress of the mystery, particularly at the end. I can’t give details without getting into spoilers, and this may be a deliberate choice of the author, to reflect the frustration of working on such a case.

I did like that a minor character called out the biggest flaw in the solution at the very end. I’ll declare that enough to keep that flaw from being one of my negatives about the TLC Book Toursbook, which it otherwise would have been for me.

The author shows considerable promise, and this book made for an interesting reading experience.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour.  Thank you to Trish for the opportunity to participate.  You can read other reader’s perspectives on this book at the other tour stops.

 
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Posted by on March 20, 2013 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: The Long Way Home by Mariah Stewart

Long Way HomeMy rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

A very enjoyable, quick read of a young woman trying to find her place in the world.

Summary via Goodreads:

As the only child of a wealthy investment manager, Ellie Chapman has never known anything besides a life of perfect privilege. But her years of good fortune come to an abrupt end when her father is exposed for swindling billions of dollars from innocent investors in a massive Ponzi scheme. And just like that, Ellie loses everything: money, job, home–even her fiance, who’s jailed as her father’s partner in crime. With no job prospects on the horizon, no cash, and her family name in tatters, Ellie has only one place to go.
Sleepy St. Dennis, Maryland, is hardly where Ellie intends to stay, however. Keeping her identity a secret, she plans to sell the house her late mother left her in the small town and use the proceeds to move on with her life. Unfortunately, her ticket to a new beginning is in dire need of a laundry list of pricey improvements, many of which she’ll have to do herself. And until the house on Bay View Road is fit to be sold, the sole place Ellie will be traveling is the hardware store. But as the many charms of St. Dennis–not to mention Cameron O’Connor, the handsome local contractor who has secrets of his own–begin to work their magic, what begins as a lesson in do-it-yourself renovations might just end up as Ellie’s very own rejuvenation.

This was an all-out feel good book.  I’ve read most (but not all) of this series, and that isn’t always true for the other books, at least within the range allowed by the romance genre.

I really liked getting to know Ellie, a young woman who had lived a life of privilege, and then had everything taken from her– not just material things, but she lost her father and fiance when they were jailed for crimes she never imagined them capable of. She’s devastated, but is ready to start rebuilding her life.  This is a character archetype that generally appeals to me– clearly damaged by life, but continuing even while dealing with the injuries.

And where better to rebuild than St. Dennis. Ellie doesn’t know that, she thinks she’s just passing through.  Ellie is suspicious of everyone, since most of her friends deserted her when life got rough, and she treats the people in the town accordingly.  But the people here know what it is like to face adversity, and they make allowances.

Cameron was a nice guy, perfect for her, and understands what she’s going through, or at least the part about living with a parent with a bad reputation.  He was a solid character, if possibly a little too good to be true, but I enjoyed watching the interactions between him and Ellie.

And yes, there were steamy bits, but they were just bits.  This isn’t the book to read for extended erotic interludes. You can consider this a plus or a minus, depending on your preferences.

Once I could relax and know it was an everything-will-be-OK kind of book, I liked the twists and turns the plot took, I liked the new characters that were introduced.  One of the fun things about a series like this is the cameos by the characters in previous books.  There is no need to have read them, but if you have, you get a quick visit to where the characters are now.  I like that.

This romance won’t be for everyone, some will find it too nice. Me? This is exactly the way I like it.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour.  Thank you for the opportunity to read this book and participate. You can find more about Mariah Stewart on her website or on Facebook. For other views on the book, check out the other tour stops:
TLC Book Tours

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2013 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: Cascade by Maryanne O’Hara

CascadeMy rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summary via Goodreads:

During the 1930s, a conflicted new wife seeks to reconcile her heart’s ambitions with binding promises she has made

1935: Desdemona Hart Spaulding was an up-and-coming Boston artist when she married in haste and settled in the small, once-fashionable theater town of Cascade to provide a home for her dying father. Now Cascade is on the short list to be flooded to provide water for Boston, and Dez’s discontent is complicated by her growing attraction to a fellow artist. When tragic events unfold, Dez is forced to make difficult choices. Must she keep her promises? Is it morally possible to set herself free?

Cascade is an interesting, well-told look at the life of a woman artist from 1934-1947. It’s a glimpse into America of that era, a nation that is changing in many ways.

It is about a small town, and the need to escape that life. It’s about big choices, and the big choices other people make, and the ones you think you can change, and the ones you have no influence over.

It is about all kinds of people. The main thing they have in common is that they have strengths and they have flaws. All were interesting and real, although Dez’s husband Asa was a little too close to a stereotypical man of his time. Most of the others went outside that mold in ways good and bad.

This book was suggested to me as a romance, but I don’t think that’s where I’d put it. This is historical fiction, and the story of a woman. Her life is shaped by love, although I’d say that love for her father is an even stronger force than the romantic love she also deals with for part of the book.

The other thing that I didn’t expect coming into this book was the look into what it means to be an artist. Getting Dez’s way of seeing the world, seeing what she saw as the difference between her commercial work and her “real” work, and seeing some of how the art scene functioned, all of these were interesting to me.  I also enjoyed the variety of Shakespearean ties woven into the story.

This was a book that kept me reading, more for the people and places than plot, but I really wanted to know more, so overall, I’d call the book a success.

I read this book as part of a TLC Book Tour.  To find out more about the author, check out her website, blog, and Facebook page.  To see other opinions on the book look at the other tour stops:

TLC Book Tours

 
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Posted by on December 19, 2012 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: Elegy for Eddie by Jacqueline Winspear

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I very much enjoyed this book, even more as a period/character piece than as a mystery.

Summary via TLC Tours:

Early April 1933. To the costermongers of Covent Garden—sellers of fruits and vegetables on the London streets—Eddie Pettit was a gentle soul with a near-magical gift for working with horses. So who would want to kill him . . . and why?

Maisie Dobbs’s father, Frankie, had been a costermonger, and she remembers Eddie fondly. But it soon becomes clear that powerful political and financial forces are determined to prevent her from learning the truth behind Eddie’s death. Maisie’s search for answers on the working-class streets of Lambeth leads her to unexpected places and people: to a callous press baron; to a has been politician named Winston Churchill; and, most surprisingly, to Douglas Partridge, the husband of her dearest friend, Priscilla. As Maisie uncovers lies and manipulation on a national scale, she must decide whether to risk everything to see justice done.

The book is set in England as the effects of WWI are still strongly felt, although the country is starting to recover, just a bit, and as the signs of the trouble that will become WWII are becoming visible to those that are looking. Maisie hasn’t been looking,not really,  but is noting the signs are around her.

Causing more immediate unrest is Maisie’s personal situation. She’s made a change of class in a way that she recognizes as unusual, and it has left her feeling unsettled and somewhat lonely. She tries to compensate for this by “fixing” the lives of those around her, while trying to deal with her romance that isn’t feeling quite like it should, a house she’s not quite comfortable settling into, and money she really doesn’t want to spend on herself.

The book largely takes place inside Maisie’s head, which worked well for me. I found the world through Maisie’s eyes to be a very interesting place.

And yes, there was a mystery. Eddie himself was a very interesting man, and looking into his death opened many interesting questions for Maisie, and a created a framework for the other events in the book. Perhaps I was too distracted by the rest to properly appreciate the mystery. It certainly wasn’t bad, it’s that the rest was so good…

I’m a fan of Maisie Dobbs, but I skipped a couple of books to get to this one. Quite a bit had happened in Maisie’s life in that time, none of it really a surprise. I don’t think you’d have trouble following the book without having read the earlier volumes, although I’m also not sure you’d enjoy spending that much time in Maisie’s head if you didn’t already know her.

If you are particularly interested in the WWII ties, I’d start here, otherwise I’d read some of the earlier books first– they are good as well.

I received this book for review on a TLC Book Tour.  Thank you for the opportunity to participate.  For other viewpoints on this book, visit the other tour stops:
TLC Book Tours

 
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Posted by on November 15, 2012 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: What the Zhang Boys Know by Clifford Garstang

What the Zhang Boys KnowWhat the Zhang Boys know was an uneven collection of short stories, with a very definite voice that bound them even tighter than the shared location.

Summary via the author’s website:

What the Zhang Boys Know, a novel in stories: Set in a condominium building on the edge of Chinatown in Washington, D.C., these stories present the struggle of Zhang Feng-qi, originally from Shanghai, to find a new mother for his sons following the death of his American wife. Along the way, the stories spotlight Zhang’s neighbors as they seek to fill gaps in their own lives. Among them: the young bookseller whose illness renders her barren; the young lawyer trying to cope with a failed marriage; the obsessive painter haunted by the image of a face; the middle-aged woman forced to sell her possessions in order to survive; the sculptor, overwhelmed by longing for the son he didn’t know he had. And then there are the Zhang boys, who firmly believe that their mother is coming back. What is it that they know?

The stories I enjoyed most were the ones that directly involved the Zhang Boys. I found that the author’s style worked very well for me with these, and I was able to identify with the characters fast enough to be invested, even in the small space of an individual story.

I wish that the story “What the Zhang Boys Know about Life on the Planet Earth” had ended the book. I loved how the summary of all the things the Zhang boys knew tied into the other stories that preceded it, but giving events a very different view when seen by two small boys.

The story that did end the book did a better job of wrapping up the life of the Zhangs, but didn’t tie up the entire book in the same way. What I liked best about the book as a whole was the way the the stories interwove.

Unfortunately, when it came to the stories that weren’t about the Zhang boys, I didn’t connect with the characters, and I didn’t think the distinctive voice added to the stories. These generally looked at the characters at low point in their lives, when they were in the midst of making bad decisions, and it was difficult to care in the time I spent with each one. The couple with a relationship with hints of 50 Shades of Gray, the gay couple with a missing dog, that couldn’t connect with each other, the novelist and the sculptor that got to know their neighbors very well… I just didn’t relate.

I also didn’t get a sense of the Chinatown setting for the building. The building itself had such promise (why did it have a gallery of artwork, anyway?), but I never had a sense of it either. The book was a collection of portraits of the characters, with a blurred background behind them, just enough detail to cause me to wonder.

It is possible that I’m missing some of the point of this– I often have trouble with Literary Writing by male authors.

The plots are interesting, and might work better for someone else. Certainly, I’m happy I got to know the Zhang Boys and their immediate family, and perhaps you’ll see more reward in the others as well.

I reviewed this book as part of a TLC Book tour. Thank you to TLC for letting me participate.  For other points of view, check out the other stops:
TLC Book Tours

 
3 Comments

Posted by on November 7, 2012 in books, reviews, tour

 

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Review: 12.21 by Dustin Thomason

Cover: 12.21 by Dustin ThomasonMy rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summary via Goodreads.com:

For decades, December 21, 2012, has been a touchstone for doomsayers worldwide. It is the date, they claim, when the ancient Maya calendar predicts the world will end.

In Los Angeles, two weeks before, all is calm. Dr. Gabriel Stanton takes his usual morning bike ride, drops off the dog with his ex-wife, and heads to the lab where he studies incurable prion diseases for the CDC. His first phone call is from a hospital resident who has an urgent case she thinks he needs to see. Meanwhile, Chel Manu, a Guatemalan American researcher at the Getty Museum, is interrupted by a desperate, unwelcome visitor from the black market antiquities trade who thrusts a duffel bag into her hands.

By the end of the day, Stanton, the foremost expert on some of the rarest infections in the world, is grappling with a patient whose every symptom confounds and terrifies him. And Chel, the brightest young star in the field of Maya studies, has possession of an illegal artifact that has miraculously survived the centuries intact: a priceless codex from a lost city of her ancestors. This extraordinary record, written in secret by a royal scribe, seems to hold the answer to her life’s work and to one of history’s great riddles: why the Maya kingdoms vanished overnight. Suddenly it seems that our own civilization might suffer this same fate.
 
With only days remaining until December 21, 2012, Stanton and Chel must join forces before time runs out.

When I saw the description, I thought cool– two genres I enjoy– medical thriller and crazy religious/apocolyptic adventure (yes, I really enjoyed The DaVinci Code).

Later I stopped to wonder if combining them was really bad idea. I started getting a bit worried. That worrying was needless. Those two aspects of the book both work very well together.

The medical drama of the book probably worked the best for me. The science seemed plausible, as did the response, both from those in the know and society in general. In actuality, I know very little about prions, and I don’t know whether the method of transmission in the book is at all plausible, but I was happy to suspend disbelief. I have no trouble at all with believing the ups and downs of societies response.  Overall, people don’t respond well, which make the moments of sanity and good sense shine.  Make no mistake, this disaster is of a scale to destroy civilization as we know it.

And what do you know– civilization is scheduled to come to an end soon.  No one believes this of course.  Except some crackpots… The multiple layers of ties to 12/21/12 and the next age of the Mayan people were intriguing, with a wealth of details about the history, as well as a plot carrying  Within the world of the book, in the end, I’m not sure which aspects were human designed, which were deliberate acts of Mayan Fates, and which were pure coincidence. Perhaps it is better that way, with so many pieces put into play, all leading to an eventful, but not completely explained away conclusion.

I enjoyed the primary characters, particularly Chel Manu, a young woman who has become an expert in Mayan studies to fill in the gaps that her mother won’t. She’s got just enough internal conflict to be interesting. Gabriel Stanton is the world’s foremost expert on prion disease, and just happens to be in the right place at the right time. Character development isn’t the strength of this book, but they are presented well enough to allow the plot to succeed.

And the plot does succeed as crazy as it is. The author mixed medical research and Mayan knowledge and made them work together in a frightening, thought provoking adventure.

I read 12:21 as part of a TLC book tour.  Thank you to Lisa and The Dial Press for providing me with a copy of the book for review and allowing me to take part in this tour.

TLC Book Tours
For other opinions on the book, check out the other tour stops:

 
4 Comments

Posted by on August 16, 2012 in books, reviews, tour

 

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