Monday, August 22, 2016

The Girl in the Red Coat by Kate Hamer

Beth Wakeford is a nervous, overprotective mother, recently divorced after her husband’s affair. She is beset by a constant fear of losing her precious 8 year-old daughter, Carmel. Carmel is a day-dreamy child who has nearly been lost before.  She is at an age where she wants to be more independent, so she takes advantage of a moment of separation in a crowded, foggy festival to snatch a moment to herself.  Beth’s worst fear is realized when Carmel cannot be found.  This story follows Beth trying to live her life without her beloved child who seemed to simply vanish, while Carmel tries to hang on to the life she knew with her loving mother while surviving the new life far from home with her captor.

Reviewed by Kim White
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Monday, August 8, 2016

Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

The newest book by Liane Moriarty starts a little slower than her previous two, The Husband's Secret and Big Little Lies.  The two main characters are Erika and Clementine, who have been friends since childhood.  They are very different and it is not an easy friendship.  Erika’s neighbor impulsively invites them and their families to a barbecue.   Something goes very wrong at that barbecue.  Unfortunately, you won’t find out what that is until the middle of the book.   Some might want to peek ahead, especially those with vivid imaginations.  The book would make more sense if it was revealed earlier, since it’s hard to understand why they all feel so guilty.  Like the previous books by this author, the chapters are written from alternating character’s viewpoints.  They also jump back and forth from “the day of the barbecue” and a few weeks later.  It can be confusing at first, but gets easier as the characters’ personalities become clear.  The second half of the book went much more quickly. 

Reviewed by Fiona Swift
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