**spoiler alert** I feel like a not very smart person, but I have no idea what happened in this book. I was going along, reading it, enjoying it, etc.**spoiler alert** I feel like a not very smart person, but I have no idea what happened in this book. I was going along, reading it, enjoying it, etc., and then the last 50 pages happened. I'd like to blame the fact that this was an e-book and I couldn't easily look back to check on things, but really, can someone please tell me what happened? I thought Minnie was the bride's sister. But then Hastings was the bride's father, but somehow NOT Minnie's father? That math just doesn't add up. Also, Hasting's friend who lived alone in a hovel -- was he make believe? Clearly I need to start focusing on my reading a little more. ...more
Liked but not loved. The main character drove me super crazy at times, but I liked the storyline. Not a fan of books that just lead directly into theLiked but not loved. The main character drove me super crazy at times, but I liked the storyline. Not a fan of books that just lead directly into the next in the series, though....more
Would have rated this four stars up until the last quarter of the book -- wasn't thrilled with the ending. I loved all the plot twists, though, and wiWould have rated this four stars up until the last quarter of the book -- wasn't thrilled with the ending. I loved all the plot twists, though, and will try the author's other books. ...more
This book had me at “Part Secret History, part Brideshead Revisited.” The Secret History by Donna Tartt is hands down one of my favorite books – it haThis book had me at “Part Secret History, part Brideshead Revisited.” The Secret History by Donna Tartt is hands down one of my favorite books – it has the perfect blend of academia, creepy siblings, and the elite. With that kind of review, I immediately snagged an e-galley of Bellwether Revivals, but didn’t get a chance to actually read it until it had hit the shelves of my library and the cover art caught my eye, leading me back to my Kindle.
Debut novelist Benjamin Wood sets the scene in picturesque Cambridge, moving between the spires and cobbled pathways of King’s College and the lush surrounding countryside that holds the family home of the Bellwethers. The book starts near the end of the story, an ending marked with a cold wind blowing through the grounds of the Bellwether Estate, flashing police lights, and bodies, though we don’t know whose.
And then, as if we had never been a part of that scene, we’re brought back to some previous time, when Oscar, a bookish but working class nurse’s assistant stumbles into the lives of the Bellwethers. Lulled into the college chapel by the melodies of an organ unlike any Oscar has ever heard, he meets Iris Bellwether, sister to the organist, Eden. The Bellwethers exist in a world that Oscar has only glimpsed -- one of privilege and academia and, above all, music. The siblings and their small but tight-knit group of friends are similarly intrigued by Oscar’s life in all its job-holding, bill-paying, apartment-dwelling glory.
It is music that brings them together, and music that separates the six. Eden falls deeper and deeper into his own obsessions, believing that his organ gives him the ability to perform miracles. I don’t want to spoil the ending by revealing much more, but as Eden began his downward spiral, I kept thinking back to the opening scene of the book, wondering when and where those bodies would pop back up.
Beatrice was always kind of the lesser sister; less beautiful, less impulsive, less engaged in her life. Tess, at only 21, lived hers to the fullest.Beatrice was always kind of the lesser sister; less beautiful, less impulsive, less engaged in her life. Tess, at only 21, lived hers to the fullest. Bee’s dull, corporate job paled in comparison to Tess’s artistic passions, flinging bright paints onto large canvasses to make people feel something. And then Tess is found, dead, in an abandoned rest room, alone, cold, and presumed to have committed suicide after giving birth to a stillborn child.
The story of each sister’s lives unfolds through Bee’s narrative. Whereas Bee had always scoffed at Tess’s tiny apartment and job waitressing, she now lives in the apartment and picks up her sister’s shifts. She befriends her sister’s friends; the elderly landlord who Tess ate dinner with once a week, the Polish immigrant who Tess bonded during their pregnancies, even the mangy cat that Tess adopted. Bee, who never understood these relationships before, now leans on them heavily, and allows them to lean on her.
Bee becomes closer to her sister than ever before, but also begins to question whether or not she had really known her. As she learns more and more about Tess’s life, she also begins to unravel the mystery surrounding her death. Bee clings adamantly to the fact that her sister valued life too highly to have taken her own. This belief gives her the strength to search for her sister’s killer, despite losing her job, fiancé, and life in New York City in the process.
Lupton’s debut novel is filled with twists and turns, and kept me on the edge of my seat until the very last page. ...more