I planned on getting loads of work done and my old to new computer switch completed, with no plans to read this month, but then Florence loomed threatening power outages and well, I wanted something to read. I wound up choosing mostly North Carolina authors this month!
I attended a local writers group back when I was writing my first book, and met Robert R Brooks one of the authors of The Clown Forest Murders. It was a nice trip down memory lane when I read the acknowledgements of the Appalachian Round Table writers critique group. RR Brooks has “two oversized cats” which of course is another plus in my book. I’ve never met his son Andrew Brooks, the coauthor who lives in California but did just subscribe to his blog.
Let me start with the cover. I didn’t “see” it at first. I thought there were two blown highlights in the forest trees, and then I saw the face, and now my mind can only see the face. The face made it a much more intriguing cover but I have to admit mid-way through the book my creative mind came up with at least three other covers. I noticed the characters chauvinistic views on women in general, portrayed us as less than – guess that gives you a few characters to dislike. Most female characters in the book were nagging, lazy housewives, who were abused and were cheated on, or were religious nutcases. There were a few, the female psychologist, the girlfriend and the mom that were more normal. I had a hard time keeping all the names straight and had to flip back a few times- there are a lot of characters and the main characters name changes from David to Dave. If I was able to just sit and read it in a day that probably wouldn’t have been a problem as the authors’ used last names in their writing which helped. Like the CC Tillery co-authored series, I didn’t feel like I was reading a book written by two people- not sure how they accomplish that especially with the generation gap. I wish I had read this book as an ebook though, as the publishers formatting of the book interior used a large number of hyphens, and left numerous widows and orphans. There were a few places that the last line of a paragraph was the last part of a hyphenated word like “ly” all alone on the last line. This is such a simple fix on print media by adjusting kerning and tracking and it pulled me from the story multiple times. I like mysteries and trying to figure out who-done-it. By chapter 42 I was thinking it wasn’t really the main person I suspected and was disappointed in myself for not figuring out who the killer was. Kept reading, only to discover I’m not at all clever, and it was no one I suspected. I would read more by these two. I’m not into sci-fi but would sit with my e-reader and see if I had better luck figuring out another mystery thriller.
Donna Everhart’s book The Road to Bittersweet was a timely read, as here in WNC, we were expecting extreme flooding from Florence. This book has a matte finish and ivory roughed-edged pages that fit the story well. I think a cover with 2 girls, hand in hand, would’ve fit even better. I have found I really enjoy reading books placed here in WNC. I stopped reading to go look up Dismal and Jawbone falls. Everhart writes very descriptively. I know the language was to match the region but it didn’t keep me from getting hung up every time there was a “won’t” when I would’ve said, “wasn’t.” Not that I speak correctly, but I just don’t use those two words interchangeably. Kind of like, I’ve never said “again” when I meant “against” and you’ll probably never hear me say “whom.” I pronounce oil, with all its syllables, you can tell if said pen or pin, Ben or been- unlike my native to WNC hubby. I liked the start of this book better than then the second half. I started losing interest some after the setting moved away from their homeplace. I liked it even less near the end when the Lord’s name was taken in vain. I was frankly surprised as she almost made it through the book without doing that, and these people prayed before meals. I was disappointed.
I like John Grisham books so I picked up Rouge Lawyer. I really, really don’t like this cover. Actually, it’s not the photo cover picture- it is the cover design and text haphazardly thrown on. The words just seemed slapped on with no regard to layout or color. I meant to look it up and see if the cover photo and the cover designer were the same people. Yes, I know blue and yellow should work, but this cover is my least favorite cover on any book in a long time. I see online the paperback has a better cover. It is a collection of short client accounts on each chapter instead of one long story.
If we like the same kind of books I’d love to hear your recommendations ~