Saturday, August 13, 2016

Black-Eyed Susans; Julia Heaberlin


Black-Eyed Susans; Julia Heaberlin
Brillance Audio - 2015

When Tessie Cartwright was 16 years old she was a typical teen and track star, until one day when she went out for a run and woke up in a grave in a Texas field covered in "back-eyed susans". She was the lucky one, she survived.  Next to her lie one corpse and the bones of two other girls in the same grave. These girls who would be forever referred to as, the Susans.  

Although Tessie survives, she is left with no recall of what transpired and suffers with what is termed as hysterical blindness in one eye.  Some 18 years later (now referred to as Tessa) she is an artist and single mother to a daughter, 14 year old Charlie.  Although a man is awaiting execution for the murders, a man who always maintained his innocence, Tessa feels the serial killer may still be at large. One day someone has planted black-eyed susans outside her home giving her yet another reason to fear for her safety and that of her daughter. Tessa must confront her past with the help of psychotherapy and try to recall what happened to her decades earlier. 

This is one of those creepy stories with more than a few twists. Tessa comes across as an unreliable narrator which appealed to me.  At times the story felt flat and moved slowly and, the ending felt kind of odd. It was a tough listen at times on audio as the chapters were short and the POV kept changing from Tessie (past) and Tessa (present), still worthy of your time if you enjoy creepy and at times uncomfortable stories.

3.5/5 stars
(library audio)

21 comments:

  1. I liked this one more than you did.

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    1. I did like but just thought it was a little tough on audio.

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  2. I'm with Kathy. I was seriously creeped out with this one!

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  3. Diane, thanks for sharing your honest thoughts about this audio book. It sounds super creepy.

    I have been gone for a few weeks but am back from my trip to Japan, and back to blogging.

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    1. Glad you are back. I so enjoyed your pics of Japan.

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  4. This sounds like a creepy one. I might have to give it a try!

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  5. Odd is usually not something I like, creepy yes, odd no.

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  6. I'd like this one I think very much!

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  7. Diane,
    I'm very interested in your comments on this one, because I have this as a library book in my house at the moment. I was in a suspense thriller mood when I ordered it ILL, but I understand some of your reservations, because I was wondering the same things as I picked up the book, started reading, read the blurb, etc.

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    1. Judith, reading the print vs. the audio edition might be easier. It's not perfect but pretty good.

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  8. I really liked this one at around 3.5 stars, too. It dragged in a few places but really surprised me. Great review!

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  9. This has been on my list to read for a while but I'm trying to read lighter books at this time. Good to know you enjoyed it.

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  10. I've had this book on my wishlist for a while, and enjoyed reading your thoughts on it, you've definitely solidified for me that this may be better read in physical form.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts :-)

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  11. I'm hoping my book group chooses this one for one of our upcoming reads. Sounds like it would be a good one for discussion!

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  12. I love the idea of this one but I've only ever seen so-so reviews.

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  13. I liked this one but I read the print version. As much as I like audio, I think the quick changes in perspective would have made it less enjoyable.

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  14. This might be one that worked better in print but I did have some of the same issues that you did. Still, I enjoyed it and was thoroughly creeped out and twitchy!

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