I won't bury my lede: I read it in 24 hours. That might be enough for some of you. For the others, some elaboration below.
Looking at reviews here andI won't bury my lede: I read it in 24 hours. That might be enough for some of you. For the others, some elaboration below.
Looking at reviews here and elsewhere, the most negative seem to come from hard core Karin Slaughter fans and hard-core readers of the genre. I'm neither. I had never read a book by the author and while I've been reading more psychological thrillers lately, I am definitely not a ... what? Thrillerophile?
I found this novel dark, very disturbing and often over the top. The storyline at times strained credulity. (Actually, unless credulity is as elastic as silly putty, it *snapped* it).
But for all that, it's a total page-turner and a well-written one, at that. I found something to like or admire in most of the main characters, even the ones who were basically unlikable (which, come to think of it, is most of them, at least for most of the book). And it had a surprising amount of humor for a book whose subject is about as un-funny as you can imagine. e.g.: "Lydia Delgado stared out at the sea of teenage cheerleaders on the gym floor and said a silent prayer of thanks that her daughter was not one of them. Not that she had a thing against cheerleaders. She was forty-one years old. Her days of hating cheerleaders were well over. Now, she just hated their mothers."
And while I haven't read this author before, I know she's written a boatload of books. She's obviously still working hard, so props for that. ...more
3.5 stars. This novel was kind of a crossover. It was part "Stand by Me" (I'm thinking of the movie - I never read the Stephen King book on which it w3.5 stars. This novel was kind of a crossover. It was part "Stand by Me" (I'm thinking of the movie - I never read the Stephen King book on which it was based) - a mystery/coming of age novel, complete with the small town, the young boys, the body by the railroad tracks. It was part "Peace Like a River," with some meditation on the power of faith and a smidge of mysticism. Maybe even a little Owen Meany, especially in the too-wise-for-his-age younger brother, though I don't think that was intended, and it didn't work very well. I got a good sense of place, and I enjoyed it, but I thought the writing was clunky at times, and it was a little too quiet, a little too flat in places. But I am glad I read it....more
If I had rated this at 4 am when I finished it, I might have given it five stars, because it had me by the collar. I've since had some time to absorbIf I had rated this at 4 am when I finished it, I might have given it five stars, because it had me by the collar. I've since had some time to absorb some of the flaws, but on my beach-readability scale it's still a definite four. Manage your expectations and enjoy. I thought Knoll wrote effectively and with a great deal of voice, and while I now see problems with some of the twists, it kept my interest....more
I have two rating systems. Stars for literary greatness and stars for readability/beach book greatness. I give this five of the second kind of stars.I have two rating systems. Stars for literary greatness and stars for readability/beach book greatness. I give this five of the second kind of stars. this is not to say that Liane Moriarty doesn't have many gifts as a writer - she does. Mainly, though, I just had an absolute blast reading this book about parents at a little school in Australia. It is clear from the start that someone was killed at a school fundraising event, though we don't know who or what the circumstances were. Moriarty takes us back through the months leading up to the event, tying the stories of various characters together in an artful fashion. She intersperses this with little snatches of dialogue that are evidently from police interviews with parents who attended the party. These are HYSTERICAL. So, yes, it's a satire. But it's not an over-the-top, cover-to-cover campy satire (those exhaust me). It's also a murder mystery, a romantic story, a friendship story. It's very clever but also very human with endearing characters and love-to-hate characters, and some in between. I just had the best time. ...more
3.5 stars. I read the entire book over two flights. (I know, right? Didn't occur to me until halfway through the first leg of the journey that perhaps3.5 stars. I read the entire book over two flights. (I know, right? Didn't occur to me until halfway through the first leg of the journey that perhaps that was not the best idea). I really liked Miri - my favorite kind of heroine, not neurotic, a coper. I found it very engaging. I won't say it's totally stuck with me since, but all in all, a good summer read....more
Mother Teresa: "In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love."
Will Traynor, paraphrased: "What, you've never beMother Teresa: "In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love."
Will Traynor, paraphrased: "What, you've never been to PARIS? Your life is not worth living!"
Me Before You was a very engaging way to spend a long car ride, even if it was way longer than it needed to be (due in part to a surfeit of adverbs. Why must everyone be "oddly sad," or "strangely quiet?" Why not just sad or quiet?") But it was a good read.
But I am troubled by the message about what makes a life worth living. Not so much about whether Will's life was worth living. I thought Moyes made a good case for his limitations and indignities. While I might not agree with his choice and hope I would choose differently, she enhanced my understanding of the life of a quadriplegic.
My issue was Will's judgment about Louisa's life. At the beginning of the book, I felt like Louisa made a good case for her job at the café. Mother Teresa would have approved. She got to know her customers, loved to hear their stories. She made herself useful and held onto the job for a long time. She lives with her family, and yes, probably a little old for that, but she's helping support them in difficult times. Welcome to the real world. And hers is a good family - imperfect, but certainly better than his. Her sister gets pregnant, the family takes her in, and Thomas grows up fatherless, but with an adoring mother, aunt and grandparents. And what's so wrong with the small town? Didn't seem so bad to me.
Oh, but get out of there, Louisa! It's a soulless place!
I know, I know ... Will saw POTENTIAL, and - aha! - we find out she really had limited herself after the "maze incident," a whole plotline that seemed forced and incongruous. Louisa didn't seem terribly scarred or scared.
She struck me as someone who was doing small things with love. ...more