Alanis, a name she chose when she walked away from her narcissistic (generous- maybe psychopathic)mother. WhoAmusing. Sort of hard bitten noir voice.
Alanis, a name she chose when she walked away from her narcissistic (generous- maybe psychopathic)mother. Who is now using (well used)the name Athena Passalis. As Alanis said to the attorney who called her; "Does she want money or is she dead?" When hearing that dear old mom has passed to her reward, Alanis asks, "How was she murdered?" Cynical, right?
Alanis (under many different names,she actually wonders what her name really is grew up on the road with "Mom" and Biddle running cons and scams across the country. When the cons turn too close to pandering, Alanis splits and leaves her mother to her own devices.
Fast forward 20 years, Alanis defines herself as Not My Mother which leaves a lot to be desired in a life. When Mom dies and leaves her of all things The White Magic Five & Dime Alanis decides to find Mom's murderer and ditch the Five & Dime.
So this noir is really 'closure' for Alanis who really is not sure what her name is, who her father is, or where she is going ultimately. As a woman who lives 'straight' but raised as a con artist she is uniquely skilled to find Mom's killer.
Many twists turns and surprises pop up as Alanis homes in on the killer. And really the reader starts to wonder if Alanis will survive the investigation.
I will be ruminating on this story for a while. Ostensibly it is the sensational story of two families, unknown to each other meeting at the funeral oI will be ruminating on this story for a while. Ostensibly it is the sensational story of two families, unknown to each other meeting at the funeral of the husband/father they share. Big Shock doesn’t touch the reaction.
The book starts with the inner lives of Simon’s wives, Selina and Lottie. These are women who spend much of their lives waiting for Simon in completely different ways. One wife is utterly controlled and material; while the other lives flamboyantly with her heart on her sleeve. As the story develops fundamental considerations of the nature of love, how we choose to live, our values and our beliefs about marriage, family, parenthood, honesty, money, materialism and self are probed. It does run long, but I kept with it because of the little insights that would pop up unexpectedly.
The ending is completely unexpected and again tugs at our foundational beliefs and assumptions.
Bailey has been fiddling to her sister Julie's guitar since they could hold the instruments. Trotted all around the south, her pushy, inconsiderate, dBailey has been fiddling to her sister Julie's guitar since they could hold the instruments. Trotted all around the south, her pushy, inconsiderate, dare I say cruel? parents have groomed the girls for country music stardom. By a crazy twist of fate when a record company sees the duet playing Bailey's songs, Bailey at 17 is kicked to the curb and Julie is signed for a record and concert deal. Part of the deal is that Bailey cannot play in public at all and in any way detract from Julie's certain success. Bailey's parents secure Bailey's cooperation by promising to withhold funding Bailey's college dreams. They also leave town, when Bailey acts out, they basically jail her at Granddad's house. Bailey is devastated that performing music has been ripped from her hands and heart. If Bailey's parents are grim, her ex, Toby is derisive scum bent on destroying any shred of self esteem Bailey might generate. Nuts. The action starts when summer break between high school and college provides an opportunity to play at the local mall. Apparently tribute bands rove the site playing standards: W. Nelson, J. Cash, D. Parton oh- Elvis is In the Building.. Bailey is a pro she can fiddle backup for anybody with perfect pitch to boot. The thing is if anybody - anybody gets wind of her fiddling her parents will pull All college funding and they remind her of this constantly. Did I mention they are Nuts? Enter serial heart breaker Sam part of a Johnny Cash duo that needs a fiddle back up. When Sam hears Bailey's fiddle he knows- this is the sound that will take his band to the top. A shameless flirt, Sam uses all his wiles to get Bailey to stick with the band despite the possible personal cost. When Sam realizes that Bailey's family has record company connections he turns up the heat and presses Bailey in terrible ways. Of course everything comes to a head and Bailey realizes that she will have to stand tall and call absolutely Everyone in her life on the BS they are slathering her with. Her stance is high stakes but necessary if she will ever be able to look in the mirror without crying. ...more
I almost gave up because of the jerky switches in point of view. But the plot and the various points Mr. Baldacci's characters make ended out interestI almost gave up because of the jerky switches in point of view. But the plot and the various points Mr. Baldacci's characters make ended out interesting me. Ultimately a tragedy with that one grand save....more
Spot on portraying the casual cruelty that children vying for social position exert. Both boys and girls; Apple bears the brunt of the social machine.Spot on portraying the casual cruelty that children vying for social position exert. Both boys and girls; Apple bears the brunt of the social machine. Thankfully she has Evan, a truly nice, even tempered boy in her class who sees a nice girl for what she is; a friend and who proves himself to be a friend time and again. ...more
I witty bit of fluff as we get a ringside seat to the carnival of a young celebrity's life. Holly is hired to ghostwrite a memoir and learns soooo mucI witty bit of fluff as we get a ringside seat to the carnival of a young celebrity's life. Holly is hired to ghostwrite a memoir and learns soooo much more than she planned to in the process....more
Beautifully written and superbly edited this is multi-layered tale alternates between Orhan's quest for truth in the 1990's with Kemel and the MeltoniBeautifully written and superbly edited this is multi-layered tale alternates between Orhan's quest for truth in the 1990's with Kemel and the Meltonian family's tribulations during the Turkish purge of Armenians in 1915.
When Orhan's grandfather's will is read ripples of rage emanate from Orhan's father, Mustafa who is omitted from the will. Even though this is sensible, Mustafa will ruin the inheritance, is is against Sharia law to skip the son for the grandson. Mustafa will contest the will and waste what Kemel and Orhan have built. Not only has Orhan been named in the will but a stranger, Seda Meltonian is given the house the family has lived in since Kemel was a young man.
It is left to Orhan to find the woman and have her return the family home to them. Clearly Kemel wants Orhan to learn something from her. What can this be and how will he get her to explain Kemel's reasoning?
That is the substance of the plot, the themes though, oh my. This story speaks so eloquently of the grief of the Armenian diaspora and the ignorance of contemporary Turkey- but also of human nature and how this same tragic tale in various iterations plays out in every corner of the world and how Orhan's casual ignorance and complacence is shared by us all.
Book 3 in Cynthia Voight's Mister Max series does not disappoint. The solutioneer must face obstacles on every page as time runs out for his parents iBook 3 in Cynthia Voight's Mister Max series does not disappoint. The solutioneer must face obstacles on every page as time runs out for his parents in faraway Andesia. Impatient for action, Grandma has purchased tickets to South America and Max is scrambling for a cover story that won't get them all killed. Many surprises, and new allies twist and turn as Max's biggest job to date hangs on a thread till the last page. ...more