I read this book in one sitting. It was a story that intensely conveyed the desperation of a teenager and her dysfunctional, poverty-stricken family.
Hailey's dealings with her family are heartbreaking: the out-of-a-job, alcoholic father; the spoiled mother, suffering depression from a miscarriage and seemingly unable to care about her living kids; and the caring older brother who wants to keep her away from it all. Each character is three-dimensional, relate-able, and real.
The one thing I didn't like was that everyone sounded the same. If the names were taken away from the quotes, I wouldn't have a clue who was saying what.
Beyond that, though, everything about this book was great. It was an emotional roller coaster, and the use of figurative language was clever and helpful. Recommended to readers who liked What's Eating Gilbert Grape.
Started out extremely slow. The first third of the book took me about a week to get through, because I really didn't want to keep going. There was too much dialogue and not enough description, lots of abbreviations without explanation, the characters were way too juvenile and unprofessional to be really likeable, and the plotline didn't seem all that great.
So when I say the rest of the book makes up for it, I really mean it.
The story was really unpredictable, and I loved getting into the mind of the killer. Watching the evidence mount up, the frustration of the team, and the tedious process of narrowing down leads to find dead end after dead end was pretty interesting and made it seem realistic. Every time I thought something was set in stone, it changed. And that's really what makes a good story.
Some complaints (not including the first third of the book):
-Not very much description: I never really know WHY Jasi likes Brandon so much. I know he's got nice muscles and she gets butterflies in her stomach when she looks at him, but that's about it. I barely know what he looks like.
-Too many cliches: Walsh is drowning in Jasi's eyes, their kiss is like heaven. That doesn't count as description.
-Loose ends: Wtf happened with Parliament? It's like a tease, mentioning the murders or some former love interest briefly, but never delving deeper or explaining. This doesn't make me want to know more, though, it just annoys the crap out of me. Oh, also, I really wanted to know what Cameron at the end, but they seemed to forget about her once the mystery was solved. So much for making friends.
Overall, good story. Okay writing. Somewhat likeable characters. Will probably read sequel if it happens to cross my path, but I won't go out of my way to find it.
Olga - A Daughter's Tale is told through diary entries of various women, letters, and telegrams. Each reveals a simple picture, and when put together, you have an album of an amazing woman's life.
It had me weeping and laughing out loud in turns, and by the end, I felt I knew Olga/Carmen, even though I was born nearly a century after her.
Sacrifice, injustice, and courage abound in this book, along with malice, greed, and fear.
Read this book.