Michelle Huneven, Richard Russo once wrote, is “a writer of extraordinary and thrilling talent.” That talent explodes with her third book, Blame, a spellbinding novel of guilt and love, family and shame, sobriety and the lack of it, and the moral ambiguities that ensnare us all.
The story: Patsy MacLemoore, a history professor in her late twenties with a brand-new Ph.D. fro...more
So my review of this novel is kind of like reviewing an old friend because I’ve been reading this book over the course of the last couple months for my Novel Writing class. Reading something over a couple months span I’ve realized has its pros. I feel like I have a really firm grasp on this novel and the characters because I’ve spent so much time with it. For my class, I had to break down the novel and really spend an adequate amount of time...more
This is the...more
The plot itself is extremely intriguing though there's not a lot of action: this story is a slow simmer throughout, never quite coming to a boil; even the critical moment is reserved and quiet, though nonetheless enthralling.
One of my biggest problems with this book is the fact that it tells you there's a "huge twist" on the dust jacket. Once you start reading it you are just waiting for the twist, which is obvious from the start, but doesn't happen until almost the end of the book. I was incredibly disappointed that the...more
Read this book after seeing the author on a tv news program.
First, in terms if her writing, I would give that 5 stars. Excellent.The book, however, was a disappointment for me.
It starts out very strong--which is what I expected after reading the remarks on the jacket, and remarks as I remembered from the interviewer on the TV news program. But, the "page turner" turned into a "do I really want to finish this".
Briefly, Patsy is a professor with a horrible drinking problem, and when you meet h...more
but actually, the more i think about this book, the more i don't like it, which almost never happens. the plot seems more suitable for a short story, and i got restless in the middle. also, even though you feel like you know...more
- Again, I liked the author's writing style. A lot. She rivals my favorite authors with her use of language and her descriptions.
- The plot was somewhat compelling... but in an almost trashy sort of way.
Given #1 (and also #2) it made sense for me to finish it. I also thought it was worthwhile to finish this book because I wanted to explore what it was that I didn't like about i...more
10 hrs and 57 mins
Patsy MacLemoore, a history professor in her late 20s, has a brand-new Ph.D. from Berkeley and a wild streak. She wakes up in jail after an epic alcoholic blackout. "Okay, what'd I do?" she asks her lawyer and jailers.
In fact, two Jehovah's Witnesses, a mother and daughter, are dead, run over in Patsy's driveway, and Patsy will spend the rest of her life trying to atone. She goes to prison, gets sober, and upon her release finds a new...more
To show just what a mess of a woman Patsy McLemoore is, our first glimpse of her is through the eyes of a young family friend who's about to be subject to a rather raw ear piercing. But then it's Patsy's story, and our piercee has nothing on Patsy, who's about to go to prison for running over two Jehovah's Witnesses. The prison scenes are brutal and set the stage for what follows, which is a meditation on overcoming obstacles.
In her writing style, Huneven reminds me of Ri...more
Huneven is a beautiful writer and I am off next to reserve her earlier titles at my local library. She moves this story unflinchingly through pain and betrayal, and doesn't cut anyone any slack. Yet she treats the characters kindly, and doesn't reduce anyone to a cartoon.
My vote for best quote from this book comes...more
Unfortunately, two people, a mother and a daughter, both Jehova's Witnesses, are found dead in her driveway. Patsy goes to jail for two years. During that time, she doe...more
It's another morning in the county drunk tank for Patsy, who is sadly inured to this ritual. She wakes up in her vomit and her filth, with no recall of last night--she experiences frequent blackouts when she drinks. A young, talented, comely, and statuesque college professor, Patsy is nevertheless on a grease skid to oblivion due to untreated alcoholism. This time she is accused of running down and killing a mother and daughter in her driveway, and her life subsequently takes a turn to prison.
Was I driving again? Moi? Sans license?...more
The men gazed at the nicked and thinning oak veneer as if they were poring over a war map, as if she were not in the room.
Okay, what’d I do? Or do
What follows is a two year stint in prison; however, when Patsy comes out her world is not the same as she a...more
Imagine waking up from an alcohol-induced blackout to be informed that you’ve killed two innocent people by driving drunk and are now in jail, awaiting sentencing. You, leading a standard middle-class life except for thi...more
The story opens with an odd episode of a lady's man, Brice; his niece, Joey; and his date-of-the-night, Patsy. Patsy is wasted on pills and booze, but Joey seems to be the focus of the novel. NOT.
Patsy, a history professor, wakes up in jail and finds herself charged with vehicular homicide. She is an alcoholic.
From that point in t...more
The novel "Blame" by Michelle Huneven puts the spotlight on an on growing epidemic of drinking and driving in the United States. It also is a story about redemption and being able to move on from tragedy.
The story of "Blame" revolves around a character named Pats...more
It was a good deal more well-written and introspective than your average thriller--can you imagine a scene from a Stephen King novel in which female prisoners take great pleasure in swinging and throwing clots of weeds during community service, reveling in the distance and accuracy they can achieve, or Michael Crichton describing a therapist's voice as a "soft path through the woods"? Did...more
It's the story of a young California college professor, Patsy MacLeemore who loves to party and drink. One morning she wakes up in jail, having no memory of the night before, and jokingly asks if she has killed someon...more
Do not read the book jacket flap.
I don't read a lot of popular fiction. However, I couldn't stop reading this one--I read the entire book in one day.
Blame is about guilt, redemption, forgiveness, love, understanding oneself, and maturing. A young woman, Patsy, frequently drinks until she blacks out. You know she's headed for disaster before she finds herself in prison for killing two people while driving during one of her black outs.
I don't think I'm giving anything away, as every review I've