Tag Archives: Family Dynamics

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson

Synopsis: After living on the road with her truck driver father, Hayley is hoping to graduate from high school, but her father’s bouts with post-traumatic stress disorder after his time in Afghanistan are getting worse and threatening both of their lives. Review: I knew The Impossible Knife of Memory would be brilliant, thought-provoking, and poignant,…

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The Dinner by Herman Koch

Synopsis: Two brothers and their wives get together over dinner at an upscale restaurant to discuss what to do about a shocking act committed by their sons. Review: The Dinner is a relentlessly twisty novel with a secretive narrative. What’s not to love? As the absurdly hoity-toity meal unfolds, the complex layers of the narrator’s…

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Josie and Jack by Kelly Braffet

Synopsis: An isolated but brilliant girl grows up under the thrall of her charismatic older brother, and when he leaves home the choice to follow him may be her undoing. Review: The dark, psychological thriller may possibly be my very favorite genre to read, and Josie and Jack was a gem-perfect example. These days I…

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Early Decision: Based on a True Frenzy by Lucy Crawford

Synopsis: A directionless young woman experiences a crisis of faith while tutoring wealthy high school students on their college application essays. Review: Sometimes when I’ve read books created around a specialized vocation, I get bored with the tedium of work. Too much minutia about the day to day operations gets me down. I felt that…

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Maxed Out by Katrina Alcorn

Synopsis: Subtitled: American Moms on the Brink. Review: Where on earth to begin with my praise for Maxed Out? Katrina Alcorn‘s memoir/cultural analysis is an honest, well-researched, and absolutely necessary addition to the conversation about women in the workplace. The political is personal, and she astutely uses her own story of corporate burnout and panic…

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Not Without My Sister: The True Story of Three Girls Violated and Betrayed by Those They Trusted by Kristina Jones, Celeste Jones and Juliana Buhring

Synopsis: The story of three sisters who were born and raised in the Children of God cult and how they escaped. Review: Not Without My Sister was rough reading, not just because the subject matter was so grim but because it was kind of sloppily written. The three sisters’ stories were all written with the…

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The Shuddering by Ania Ahlborn

Synopsis: Snowbound in a remote cottage filled with memories, a sister, her brother, her best friendm her ex, and her ex’s new girlfriend realize that something out there wants to eat them. Review: Ania Ahlborn’s The Neighbors was more quirky than horrific, but The Shuddering is straight-up terrifying and I loved every nail-biting moment. I…

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