Monday, May 27, 2013

Everybody Sees The Ants

Author: A. S. King

Source: Library

Summary: (goodreads) Lucky Linderman didn't ask for his life. He didn't ask his grandfather not to come home from the Vietnam War. He didn't ask for a father who never got over it. He didn't ask for a mother who keeps pretending their dysfunctional family is fine. And he didn't ask to be the target of Nader McMillan's relentless bullying, which has finally gone too far.

But Lucky has a secret--one that helps him wade through the daily mundane torture of his life. In his dreams, Lucky escapes to the war-ridden jungles of Laos--the prison his grandfather couldn't escape--where Lucky can be a real man, an adventurer, and a hero. It's dangerous and wild, and it's a place where his life just might be worth living. But how long can Lucky keep hiding in his dreams before reality forces its way inside?

Review: A. S. King has a gift. And it shines brightly in this beautifully written novel. Human weakness and fragility are explored against a backdrop of suspense, action and uncertainty. Physical and psychological weaknesses are examined and the main character provides an intensely intimate glance into a life that may seem fine on the outside.

Lucky has two parents that love him. They are successful and there are no violence, drug or alcohol problems to speak of. But even so, Lucky is missing something. The thing that makes a family truly a family. It is connection, communication and genuine interest. This is an important concept as the reviewer, because this novel delves into the emotional effects of scars from the past and lack of understanding. King made Lucky an incredibly human character and developed secondary characters. All of the characters revealed a different aspect or take on life and seeing it from Lucky's eyes was an experience worth repeating.

Facts on the POW/MIA are inserted perfectly and the entire story is so well sealed together that I just loved this book so much more than I can say. Radically different worlds, Lucky's dream self and his real self manage to meld by the end and reveal immense and realistic character growth. Even so, King does not reveal everything. Or am I the only one left wondering at the end about Lucky's dream objects? It is a novel that leaves curiosity to bloom long after the last page.

Highly recommended. The plot moves quickly and there are many facets to the story, but it all fits so perfectly! The writing is infused with sincerity and the reader will fall for Lucky's cause. Great novel.

Rating: 1 2 3 4 5

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Hello! Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that features a book awaiting publication. It is hosted by Jill from BreakingtheSpine. Check out her blog for more information and to link up your own post!

This week, I am enamored by the following title:

Title: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Author: April Genevieve Tucholke

Release Day: August 15th, 2013

Summary: (goodreads) You stop fearing the devil when you’re holding his hand…

Nothing much exciting rolls through Violet White’s sleepy, seaside town…until River West comes along. River rents the guesthouse behind Violet’s crumbling estate, and as eerie, grim things start to happen, Violet begins to wonder about the boy living in her backyard. Is River just a crooked-smiling liar with pretty eyes and a mysterious past? Or could he be something more? Violet’s grandmother always warned her about the Devil, but she never said he could be a dark-haired boy who takes naps in the sun, who likes coffee, who kisses you in a cemetery...who makes you want to kiss back. Violet’s already so knee-deep in love, she can’t see straight. And that’s just how River likes it.

Blending faded decadence and the thrilling dread of gothic horror, April Genevieve Tucholke weaves a dreamy, twisting contemporary romance, as gorgeously told as it is terrifying—a debut to watch.

My Thoughts: With such a poetic title, this is one novel that I can fangirl over with class and elegance. An unconventional love story, and such a sinister synopsis make me want to own this book as soon as is possible. I cannot tell you how wonderful this sounds to me and how I so hope that it will deliver all the direct and indirect promises I imagine are being delivered in that powerful summary.