by Richard Wagamese
This is definitely my kind of story, and so beautifully written. It is a story about a young man, the son of Eldon Starlight, and his call by the man who is his father whose dying wish is to be buried in the traditional Ojibway manner. Franklin, a sixteen year old well versed in the way of the land, finally learns of his own history on their journey through the forest. It is a novel about healing, grace and redemption.
The Word Exchange
by Alena Graedon
This story fascinated me as the premise is a not too distant future where computer viruses begin to affect people. It was reminiscent to me of Divergent or The Hunger Games in it's dystopian telling of the dangers of technology. I really enjoyed how it was told, in a journal form by Anana and Bart, two people who work at the North American Dictionary of the English Language who also contract the 'word flu'. It's interesting (and scary) to think about computers doing everything for us, including telling us when we need to eat and medicating us when we're not well. Very interesting story.
by Laird Hunt
Neverhome began beautifully, as a story that focused on one of the over 400 women who fought as men in the Civil War. It is well written, an interesting look at a history I never even considered, but went on a bit of a tangent about a third of the way through and at that point I disconnected from both the main character and the storyline. It has received very good reviews but, unfortunately it felt a bit like unusual things just happened in order to fulfill a word quota. Perhaps it was that the storyline just became too strange for me, though strange things do happen in war.
by Natalie S. Harnett
Now this story I really, really enjoyed. It is set in an area of coal mining communities in the 1960's where underground fires ravage communities. A proud Irish-American family lives with the threat of a curse placed on them by a priest many years earlier and is told in the voice of 12-year-old Brigid. My father managed a coal mine so the environment really resonated with me. This story is full of mystery, sorrow, loss, love and survival.
by Rene Denfeld
This story takes place on death row in a crumbling old prison and revolves around several characters but focuses on a female investigator whose job it is to save the soon to be executed. I find it interesting how two people can experience the same trials and yet take absolute opposite roads in life. I often wonder if it's a genetic predisposition or something deep inside of a person who makes the choice to rise above their circumstances. Loved this story.
Dear Mr Darcy
by Amanda Grange
There are times when I require a lighter read and this was certainly it for me. This is a re-telling of Pride and Prejudice but from the perspective on Mr. Darcy, and told in the form of letters. I'm afraid I found Mr. Darcy more arrogant in this version but it was a fun read.
Cuckoo's Calling & The Silkworm
by Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling)
Now these two stories were fun mysteries to read. I love J.K. Rowling's writing style and adore main characters with flaws, and this didn't disappoint. Cormoran Strike is a private detective whose personal and business lives are quite a mess, but who continues to putter along despite his hardships. In each novel he has a different murder to solve and does it through his powers of observation, his grouchy demeanor and with the help of his temporary secretary. I thoroughly enjoyed both of these novels.
The Piano Man's Daughter
by Timothy Findley
Timothy Findley is an amazing writer and this story was incredible. Narrated by Charlie Kilworth, the young son of Lily, a woman who is obsessed with fire and struggles with her sanity. Charlie is looking for answers to his beginnings through two Irish immigrant families in Toronto whose lives revolve around music and madness and tolerance. Beautifully written.