Nancy's Reviews

After working in several word-related fields: copy writing, editing, freelance voice talent and theatre--followed by a long career as a stay-at-home mom I started working at the bookstore almost nineteen years ago, and was fortunate enough to be the manager for eighteen years. From my first day at work I had a sense of being home among the books and fellow book-junkies and that feeling only grew with the ensuing years.

I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to work with such a terrific team of booksellers and customers, and I am especially indebted to my fantastic family who supported my choice of jobs despite work hours that were definitely not conducive to family and social activities. I'm just now learning what all the fuss about weekends is all about!

My thanks to all of you who supported the store, who mourned its closing, and who asked us to establish this forum so that we can continue our tradition of exchanging opinions and ideas about books.

I Know Who You Are                               

 Author:  Alice Feeney                        Fiction                        

Aimee Sinclair’s life should be perfect. Her acting career is taking off with her starring role in her new movie, she's married to Ben, with whom she shares her lovely home, she flirts innocuously with her handsome leading man Jack, and she has escaped the horror of her previous life, except for the constantly painful memories of it. Her life, however, is far from the idyllic image the public sees: she is not the polished beauty she presents to the world but instead, a woman terrified that someone will discover the truth about her; Ben has become increasingly cruel and violent; and she is being stalked by someone who looks like Maggie, but who can't be because Maggie, her kidnapper, is dead. Now, Ben has vanished, and the police believe that Aimee murdered him, despite Aimee's denials. Now she just has to hope that not only does the investigation prove she didn't kill Ben, but that it also doesn’t lead to the men she really did kill.



Alice's Island                                                            

 Author:  Daniel Sanchez Arevalo                     Fiction       

When Alice's husband dies in a car crash far from where he has told her he will be, it may be Alice's pregnancy hormones, but she becomes convinced he's been having an affair (well, not very convinced, but she thinks about it). So, after much charting, GPS-ing, driving, and asking questions, Alice finally pinpoints his destination: an island with a population of around 450 where, on her first visit (with her daughter, because who doesn’t want her child to fall in love with the place her father's probable lover lived), Alice, in labor, collapses and has her baby. Then Alice sells her house in the city, buys a house on the island, and begins to snoop around, trying to find out just who on the island had been involved with her husband. By now, what had originally seemed as though it might become a mystery, is turning into a gossipy, sappy book. That, however, was before this Alice person, this young widow, this mom, starts to plant audio and then video equipment in the homes and businesses of the residents of the island. It's at this point that I realized that this author has no idea how to write a book.

What. A. Mess. 


Boy and His Dog at the End of the World     

 Author:  C.A. Fletcher                    Fiction                           

Very few are left now, here at the end of the world. After the Gelding, fewer and fewer babies were born and humankind just began to fade away. Griz and his family are some of those left: the people and the dogs, alone on their small island, just North of the country that once was Scotland. Of those who are left Griz has met a few; no one comes to their island, but there are tiny settlements other places, where Griz and his family go to trade, to forage, and to bring back useful things scavenged from houses and buildings left empty but intact as their owners disappeared. The greatest finds for Griz on these trips are books, which he lugs home by the armload, so he knows that the world is huge, although he also knows its inhabitants are scarce.

It’s a surprise, then, and not altogether a pleasant one, when sails in the distance become a visitor with a wide, generous smile that Griz finds suspicious, who seems as interested in the dogs as he does in trade. But his stories of travel are enthralling, and the family is amazed at the taste of the new food he introduces them to, which proves, to their misfortune, to be a mistake. For by the next morning, sick and drugged, Griz realizes the man with the generous smile has left, taking Griz's dog with him. And even now, at the end of the world, when your dog is stolen you go after her. No matter what.


If She Wakes                                         

 Author:  Michael Koryta                   Fiction                           

Standing in the New England cold, Tara Beckley regrets having volunteered to escort visiting Professor Oltamu to Hammel College's prestigious conference. Dinner was fine, but they are on a tight schedule and, instead of getting in Tara's car, the professor is nervously pacing the parking lot, despite Tara's reminders of the time. In fact, Oltamu's behavior is becoming stranger by the minute, as he first suggests that they walk the remaining distance, then as he insists on pausing to snap a picture of Tara and himself. Odder still is his interest in the appearance of Hobo, a shy stray dog who shows up regularly to chase trains, and Tara is completely flummoxed when the professor takes his picture, as well, before thrusting his phone at Tara and frantically instructing her to lock it securely in the glove compartment of her car. Her immediate reaction to the sound of another car approaching is one of relief that there will be someone else there with this man, but that feeling is destroyed as the speeding vehicle plows into hers, crushing Oltamu and pitching Tara headfirst into a concrete bridge support before she hits the river.

Never Game                                                  

Author:  Jeffery Deaver                       Fiction 

The reward offered by her father for finding his missing daughter is modest, but collecting rewards is what Colter Shaw does. Finding missing people, earning the money. Colter is very good at what he does: his father made sure of it, raising his kids on a massive spread he called The Compound at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas. As his mother has always said, Colter could track a butterfly that had breathed on a blade of grass, so tracking people was an ingrained skill, as was figuring odds on where they are, and why. Odds are good that he will find this missing woman, Sophie. Whether she'll be alive is another matter altogether.

A page-turner for sure, and a great start to Deaver's new series, Never Game is a must-read!