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Friday, April 13, 2018

The Summer Children by Dot Hutchison

This FBI agent has come to expect almost anything—just not this…
When Agent Mercedes Ramirez finds an abused young boy on her porch, covered in blood and clutching a teddy bear, she has no idea that this is just the beginning. He tells her a chilling tale: an angel killed his parents and then brought him here so Mercedes could keep him safe.
His parents weren’t just murdered. It was a slaughter—a rage kill like no one on the Crimes Against Children team had seen before. But they’re going to see it again. An avenging angel is meting out savage justice, and she’s far from through.
One by one, more children arrive at Mercedes’s door with the same horror story. Each one a traumatized survivor of an abusive home. Each one chafing at Mercedes’s own scars from the past. And each one taking its toll on her life and career.
Now, as the investigation draws her deeper into the dark, Mercedes is beginning to fear that if this case doesn’t destroy her, her memories might.

I have received a netgalley arc (in return for an honest review) of every book in the Collector Series by Dot Hutchison and each one was brilliant, captivating and beautiful. Each one disturbing, funny, uncomfortable and passionate.

The Summer Children was no different. I laughed, I cried and I enjoyed myself. I ate up page after page, deeply involved with some new characters and old characters I have grown to love.

Anyone who knows me well can tell you Butterfly Garden is one of my favorite novels of all time and I have re read it every year since it came out.  The Summer Children will be the same. I was so invested and so interested. I am hopeful that there will be more novels in this collection. The story line was colorful, original and nerve wracking. 

This book is not for a the faint of heart, it is for lovers of TV like SVU and Criminal Minds.  There is child abuse, murder and rape in this novel. While I am against rape as plot in many ways and recently read a book that I hated because of it's use of rape...This novel handles it with the care needed, and in a way that makes you remember that in real life these things happen to children. 

I also liked that the main character, Mercedes,  is a Hispanic lesbian and she is written in a tasteful  way that showcases the diversity needed in literature. 

The character dynamics and development are rich and made me feel so connected to each of them I was sad to leave their world.

I will be buying a physical copy of this novel as well, to support the author and so I can physically grip it's pages and cover as I re read it every year. 

Thank you Dot Hutchison- I looked forward to everything you write. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Books I Loved but Won't Read Again

Top Ten Tuesday is a fun meme hosted by http://www.thatartsyreadergirl.com Where we showcase ten books with a certain theme.
This week it's all about books we love but won't re read.

Ok so the following are books I won't read again simply because they are the first novel in a long ass series that I gave up on. I loved them, they were fun to read. I probably re read them at one point. But I will never  read them again. In the past few years I book purged any series that I was starting to resent buying or hated where the plot went.

I won't re read the following books because as much as I liked them one made me really sad and cry, one made me very anxious

I wont re read this book because I don't plan on ever being pregnant again

I won't re read this book because I know how it ends and it's like The Sixth Sense. Once you know the twist the book loses a little something.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Reincarnation Blues by Michael Poore

A magically inspiring tale of a man who is reincarnated through many lifetimes so that he can be with his one true love: Death herself.
What if you could live forever—but without your one true love? Reincarnation Blues is the story of a man who has been reincarnated nearly 10,000 times, in search of the secret to immortality so that he can be with his beloved, the incarnation of Death. Neil Gaiman meets Kurt Vonnegut in this darkly whimsical, hilariously profound, and wildly imaginative comedy of the secrets of life and love. Transporting us from ancient India to outer space to Renaissance Italy to the present day, is a journey through time, space, and the human heart

So I am very disappointed in this book. I voted on it for book club thinking it would be really interesting and what it turned into was an MRA wet dream.

Let's start with Milo, a not very attractive slacker who has lived almost ten thousand lives without making it to "perfection." He's in love with death who of course is a beautiful woman who loves him and fucks him all the time and who, honestly, doesn't have much of a plot or personality aside from being Milo's love interest. 

We then move the the afterlife, which is pretty interesting but the idea of gaining "perfection" to move on into the golden pool of everything is ridiculous. Milo lives plenty of lives that are really good, where he does wonderful selfless things and saves people- only to be told it's not good enough not "perfection" but hey we can't tell you what that is soo..... If you don't want to be thrown off the sidewalk into nothingness you better get it right.  

Oh also, they don't tell him about the 10,000 lives dead line until he only has 5 left- dick move. 

Some of his lives were interesting, some so dull/stupid I skimmed through them. (One where he wanted to be the one to claim some girl's restored virginity was fairly vile) In fact by the end I was so uninterested in Milo and Suzie (death) that I just wanted to book to be over. 

Many of the concepts of this novel were interesting and unique, I did laugh a few times and there were several chapters I really enjoyed. 

BUT this was the one that made me stop and say: FUCK NO. 

One of Milo's lives he is a 15 year old boy who is accused of raping a girl who is older than him, even though it was consensual.  It takes place in the future where he is sent to an asteroid prison where he is then raped over and over again. "Owned" by horrible people and used for whatever they want, but mainly raped. (Oh and they remove his eye and choke him into unconscious...a lot)

Finally he is released because they find out the girl who accused him is crazy and in a mental hospital where she is getting futuristic anti crazy treatment that "fixes" her. While this version of Milo's life is ruined and he eventually commits suicide, the girl's life is fine and pleasant and she feels guilty about what happened to Milo and begs him to forgive her, which he does and then she moves on.

In this day and age of #metoo movements and a culture of  rape and white entitlement I feel this chapter never should have made it past an editor, or been published without its removal. It read like a MRA blog going off about how many "great" guys lives are ruined by false rape accusations while women go on to live fairy tale lives . After this chapter it was hard for me to continue on. 

So I don't know, read this if it sounds good to you and let me know what you thought. I'm giving it two stars- mainly for original concept.