Wednesday, October 31, 2018

October in Review - November Plans

I think fall is one of my favorite times of year to read. The cooler weather always makes me look forward to some mystery and thriller books, a cup of hot tea and a fluffy comforter and cat on my lap.
I finished the RIP X111 Challenge early and also manager to read more books in October than I planned (15).  Some of my favorite books were:

Here's what I finished:
  1. Unsheltered; Barbara Kingsolver (ARC) - 3.5/5 - Oct/2018
  2. The Trauma Cleaner; Sarah Krasnostein (memoir-library) - 2.5/5 - Oct/2018
  3. After Anna; Lisa Scottoline (audio) - 3/5 - Oct/2018
  4. Ten Horse Farm; Robert Sabuda - (personal copy) - 5/5 (Oct/2018)
  5. Sea Prayer; Khaled Hosseini - (library) - 3.5/5 (Oct/2018)
  6. Waking Up White; Debby Irving NF- (library) 4/5 (Oct/2018)
  7. An Unwanted Guest; Shari Lapena (library) 4.5/5 (Oct/2018)
  8. No Good Asking; Fran Kimmel (ARC) 4.5/5 (Oct/2018)
  9. The Witches: Suspicion, Betrayal & Hysteria in 1692 Salem; Stacy Schiff (NF) (book group) - 3/5 Oct/2018 
  10. After You; Jojo Moyes - (personal copy) - 4/5 (Oct/2018)
  11. Still Me; Jojo Moyes - (personal copy) 3.5/5 (Oct/2018)
  12. Family Trust; Kathy Wang (eGalley) - 4/5 (Oct/2018)
  13. Sight; Jessie Greengrass (ARC) 2/5 - (Oct/2018)
  14. Twelve Patients: Life & Death at Bellevue Hospital; Eric Manheimer MD (NF) (library) - 3/5 (Oct/2018)
  15. Where the Crawdads Sing; Delia Owens (eGalley) - 4.5/5 - (Oct/2018) - no review yet
YTD Total - (97)

Plans for November:

How was your month? any Plans for November?

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - Vox; Christina Dalcher

Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where  readers post the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book that they are reading or plan to read.

Vox; Christina Dalcher
Berkley - 2018


"If anyone told me I could bring down the president, and the Pure Movement, and that incompetent little shit, Morgan LeBron in a week's time, I wouldn't believe them.  But I wouldn't argue. I wouldn't say a thing.

I've become a woman of few words."

What do you think? Read more or pass? (My DIL told me about this one and I thought it sounded good).

Monday, October 29, 2018

Twelve Patients: Life and Death at Bellevue Hospital; Eric Manheimer, M.D.

AUTHOR: Eric Manheimer, M.D.
PUBLISHER: Grand Central Publishing
PUB. YEAR: 2012
FORMAT:  - library
RATING: 3.5/5 stars

Twelve Patients is a memoir and more written by the former (13) year medical director of Bellevue Hospital, the oldest public hospital in NYC.  This story was the inspiration for the new 2018, weekly medical series, New Amsterdam, which we've been watching and enjoying.

As Manheimer is put in charge with getting the medical team and hospital back on track, he a;p learns he has cancer and is forced to deal with his own illness. In addition to his story we read the stories of (12) different patients in medical crisis, Many of the stories involve individuals who never benefited from preventative health services before their situations reached too critical to cure levels. From prison inmates, illegal immigrants, the homeless and even a Wall Street executive, were just some of the stories Manheimer shares. Some of these stories end well, some do not, but, it was easy to be drawn into lives of these patients. 

Overall, this was a decent read,  even though I found the details about government regulations and drug companies a little dry and less interesting than the rest of the book. If you like non-fiction or stories of medical crises, try this one.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Sight; Jessie Greengrass

TITLE: Sight
AUTHOR: Jessie Greengrass
PUB. YEAR: 2018
RATING: 2/5 stars

I not sure what I was expecting when I decided to read this brief novel (less than 200 pages), but I can honestly say, it just was not my "cup of tea".

An unnamed narrator is expecting her second child and spends a great deal of time obsessing about everything: her first born growing up and away from her, her mother's death when she 20, the father who left her, a less than sensitive psychoanalyst grandmother and more.

I found the stream of consciousness writing style was somewhat off putting; the thoughts jump from one worried thought to another. There are lots of heavy themes in this short novel as well. Sorry I just can't recommend this one, it's depressing.

The Witches: Suspicion, Betrayal & Hysteria in 1692 Salem; Stacy Schiff

AUTHOR: Stacy Schiff
PUBLISHER: Little Brown
PUB. YEAR: 2015
FORMAT:  - print
RATING: 3/5 stars

The Witches was our book group pick for October, most of us were looking forward to it.  I think for many of us there has always been a fascination with the New England witch hysteria and subsequent executions which resulted in some 59 trials, lasting less than a year, in which 19 individuals were hanged.

It all began in Massachusetts when the 11 year old niece of a minister and her 9 year old cousin became hysterical, claiming they were being bitten and chased by something invisible. (Mind you it was the dead of winter, there was no electricity, 2 kids in the dark of night who were probably just bored.)

Our Discussion - Out of about 10 who attended our meeting, no one finished the entire book. Most found the 500+ page textbook like style to be rambling and unfocused with too many names to keep track of.  Although the book seemed well-researched, most agreed that it was not well organized and that the writing style was dry.  Lot's of detail and footnotes galore.

Have you read this one? If so what did you think?

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Family Trust; Kathy Wang

TITLE: Family Trust
AUTHOR: Kathy Wang
PUBLISHER: William Morrow
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Silicon Valley, CA
FORMAT:  - (eGalley)
RATING: 4/5 stars

Stanley Huang has long claimed to have it all. Once a poor man in China, through hard work he has attained the American dream and should now be enjoying life. On the contrary, Stanley has been given a death sentence, diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, he's forced to get his affairs in order and quick.

Family Trust is a complicated and sometimes funny family drama told from alternating POVs.  There is Linda, Stanley's ex-wife, who was married to him for 34 years. She wants to make sure that the couples (2) adult children get the bulk of his inheritance and not his much younger current wife, Mary.  There is son Fred, is a Harvard Business grad, who hasn't quite attained the corporate prestige and recognition he had hoped for.  Daughter, Kate, is a working mom, supporting a husband who has been trying to get a business off the ground and, lastly, Mary, the much younger current wife of Stanley, who has been married to Stanley for 9 years.

I loved the way the story is told, the various POVs and terrific character development worked well.  Although I disliked a couple of the characters, some of the things that happen to them at times were so funny that I could overlook their short comings.  I thought this was a well written and engaging debut novel about an Asian American family and life in Silicon Valley. It was, in some ways, was reminiscent of The Nest

Thursday, October 25, 2018

No Good Asking; Fran Kimmel

AUTHOR: Fran Kimmel
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Canada
FORMAT:  - print
RATING: 4.5/5 stars

No Good Asking is a quiet yet moving story, set in rural Canada about the power to heal the human spirit.

Hannah is an 11 year old girl whose mother has died. She was left living with her mother's abusive ex-boyfriend.  As the story opens she is spotted walking on a rural snowy road on a cold December night and appears bloodied.

Eric Nyland is in law enforcement, he spots her, rescues her and brings her home to stay with his family: wife Ellie, son Daniel 14 and autistic son Sammy, age 5, until other arrangements can be made.  Hannah's stay initially places undue stresses on this already troubled family, but as days pass her presence and positive attitude brings about subtle changes which may be just what this family needs to heal.

Told from the POV of Eric, Ellie, Daniel and Hannah, No Good Asking is a beautifully written story about kindness and its power to transform and heal.  Kindness is something the world needs more of these days. I thought this was a beautiful book.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - In Pieces; Sally Field

Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where  readers post the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book that they are reading or plan to read.

In Pieces: a memoir; Sally Field
Grand Central Publishing - 2018

My Grandmother's Daughter

"I WAIT FOR my mother to haunt me as she promised she would; long to wake in the night with the familiar sight of her sitting at the end of my bed, to talk to her one more time, to feel that all the pieces have been put into place, the puzzle is solved, and I can rest.

Sometimes I think I've seen something out of the corner of my eye and I stop still in the middle of my Pacific Palisades kitchen, looking for the flutter of a sign; or I'm walking in the West Village, headed to my New York apartment, loaded down with groceries, when I hear her laugh ring out.  I turn in circles looking for her. Where are you mom? Why won't you come?"

What do you think, Any interest in this one? 

I love a good memoir and this one has been getting great reviews. Thanks to Grand Central Publishing for sending me this boo.

Monday, October 22, 2018

JoJo Moyes - After You and Still Me - 2 quick reviews

I read Me Before You, the first book in this 3 book trilogy in 2012, and, despite loving that book, books 2 and 3 of the trilogy sat on my shelves unread until this month. Here are a couple of brief reviews.

After You; Jojo Moyes
Penguin - 2015

TITLE: After You
AUTHOR: Jojo Moyes
PUB. YEAR: 2015
FORMAT:  - print
RATING: 4/5 stars

Book #2 takes place 18 months after the death of quadriplegic, Will Traynor. Louisa Clark was Will's caregiver and the two were in love.  Louisa is trying to get over Will's death, and with some money Will left her in his will,  she moves from her parents home in a small English village to a small flat in London. She's attending a support group with others who are grieving and still works as a barmaid at an airport bar.  However, we an accident leaves her unable to care for herself, she moves back to her parents until she recovers.

An unexpected visit from a 16 y/old girl named Lily who needs a place to stay takes Louisa by surprise, reminding her once again about the young man she lost and the fact that life does go on after a loved one dies.

I liked this one, perhaps not as much as book #1, but a good story all the same. This story winds down with Louisa receiving a job offer in the US, leaving a nice change of scene opportunity for Louisa in book #3.  I think most fans of Jojo Moyes should be pleased with this story.

Still Me; Jojo Moyes
Pamela Dorman Books - 2018

TITLE: Still Me
AUTHOR: Jojo Moyes
PUBLISHER: Pamela Dorman Books
PUB. YEAR: 2018
FORMAT:  - print
RATING: 3.5/5 stars

In Still Me, book #3, of the Me Before You trilogy, Louisa (Lou) has accepted a one year assignment as a social secretary to the wealthy Gopnik family in New York City.  Leonard Gopnik's new, younger wife Agnes, his formerly his masseuse, is feeling like a fish out of water.  As wife #2, this Polish immigrant is insecure about her new role and higher social class. The Gopniks occupy a 7,000 square foot 5th Avenue apartment overlooking Central Park. Louisa has a calming effect for Agnes yet, Lou must keep a delicate balance to ensure she doesn't overstep her role and lose her paycheck in the process.  Meanwhile, Louisa has met Joshua, a handsome young man, who reminds her of the love she lost, but, is she capable of keeping her emotions in check and her new life separate from the one she left behind?

This wasn't perfect but, I did enjoy watching Louisa navigate big city life in a new country.  A fun follow up novel overall.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

An Unwanted Guest; Shari Lapena

AUTHOR: Shari Lapena
PUBLISHER: Pamela Dorman Books
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Upstate NY
FORMAT:  - print (library)
RATING: 4.5/5 stars

Mitchell's Inn, a remote getaway nestled in the Catskill Mountains of NY is the perfect place for recharging oneself or for a romantic getaway. There's a wood burning fireplace, a wine cellar, a library full of books and games and more.  The snow is falling and soon a major blizzard and ice storm is in full play. The guests: an attractive wealthy young engaged couple, a middle aged couple whose marriage is on the rocks, two female friends, a female author working on a novel, a NYC lawyer acquitted of his wife's murder and the inn keeper and his son.

On the first night the storm has caused the Inn to lose power, the generator is not working, no phone, no WIFI, and everyone's cell phones are losing their charge.  Sometime during the night a woman's body is found at the bottom of the staircase and it looks like an accident, but is it?  The ice and blizzard prevent the medical examiner from promptly removing the body which puts the other guests on edge.  However, when a second and eventually third person dies, everyone is a suspect.

It seems that almost every guest has a secret which are slowly revealed. This is a fast-paced whodunit, reminiscent of Agatha Christie's "And Then There Were None". I must say, I liked the modern feel of this one, and, I didn't guess who the murderer was either. There were plenty of red-herrings to throw me off track.

I was happy to pick this one up from the library as I liked the author's 2 earlier books. The cover art really drew me and I thought it was just perfect based on how the story plays out.

Waking Up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race; Debby Irving

AUTHOR: Debby Irving
PUBLISHER: Elephant Room Press
PUB. YEAR: 2014
SETTING:  MA (mostly)
FORMAT:  - print (library)
RATING: 4/5 stars

The author, Debby Irving, is a white woman of privilege. She was born in 1960, one of 5 children who grew up in an exclusive Boston suburb. There was a family summer home in Maine, country club membership and for activities: swimming, tennis, sailing and golf.  She identified as 100% New England WASP with roots back to the Mayflower. Her family was a successful lot of bankers, lawyers and businessmen. As she grew up, she was well aware of racial tensions, and, often found herself worrying about offending people of color, the very people that deep down she was trying to befriend.  She sought to understand more.

There were some aspects of this book that was an eye-opener for me, a middle class white woman, who never considered myself racist. For example, I never knew that the GI Bill of 1944 was not accessible to black veterans when it was instituted nor, did I realize that less than 2% of new housing in 1962 went to people of color.  There were other examples of how people of color have been excluded from programs white people have taken for granted.

The author had an opportunity to attend some insightful classes and other coursework in racial and cultural identity issues.  At the end of each chapter of this book there are questions posed to the reader to make you think about how you might react to various situations. It makes you consider the way people of color have been, or continue to be, impacted by the fact that most white people, from childhood, have been conditioned to feel superior.  Well-written and informative.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

A Star is Born (2018) WOW

I've seen this gem, directed by Bradley Cooper, twice already and can't sing its praises enough.  I'm not an emotional person by nature nor, was I a Lady Gaga fan, but this movie stirred all sorts of emotions in me, in the best possible way.

Lady Gaga is a struggling service worker with a beautiful voice. Bradley Cooper, is a rock musician with addiction issues and a hearing disability, who by chance discovers Ally's musical talent and a quick mutual attraction draws them together.  The two are amazing, the acting, the singing -- just the perfect chemistry and the music is so moving. 

It's funny, I've never been a Barbra Streisand fan, so the 1970s version of this movie never really appealed to me, but, this modern version, IMO, is not to missed.

Have you seen it? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

I had to purchase the soundtrack, so awesome.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Sea Prayer; Khaled Hosseini

TITLE: Sea Prayer
AUTHOR: Khaled Hosseini
PUBLISHER: Riverhead Books
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Syria/Turkey
FORMAT:  - print
RATING: 3.5/5 stars

"Inspired by the story of Alan Kurdi , a 3 year old Syrian refugee, who drowned in the Mediterranean Sea trying to reach safety in Europe in 2015.  In the year after Alan's death 4,176 others died or went missing attempting the same journey."

This was a very short story but powerful story. It's a message from a father to his young son on the eve before the two will attempt to free Syria's war zone for the hope of a better life.

This book is targeted for ages 7 and up.  The vivid watercolor images, the message emphasizing the refugee crisis are well done but, I thought the story may be difficult for some younger children to fully understand. The proceeds from the sale of this book will go to UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Ten Horse Farm, a pop-up book by Robert Sabuda

AUTHOR: Robert Sabuda
PUBLISHER: Candlewick Press
PUB. YEAR: 2018
FORMAT:  - print
RATING: 5/5 stars

One of our granddaughters is crazy about horses and at age 4 has even begun riding lessons inside a local stable where she attended summer camp.  When I first learned Robert Sabuda, known for his outstanding pop-up books (we own several) had a new book about horses, I had to get. It's outstanding.

Just take a look at the 3-D, pop up illustrations (I've included pics of just a few) and how they come to life and pop off the pages. The quality of the book, the color combinations and the fine detail paid to every single page makes this book a winner and for sure a keeper.

If you have a horse lover in your family, be sure to buy a copy of this one.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - No Good Asking; Fran Kimmel

Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where  readers post the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book that they are reading or plan to read.

No Good Asking; Fran Kimmel
ECW Press - 2018


They All Come From Somewhere
Friday, December 20

"From a distance, it looked like a small smear of blood on a white blanket.  Perhaps a wounded coyote, staggering along the road in the relentless wind.  Eric drove on, a flurry of white surrounding his car, keeping to the faint tracks he'd made the day before.  As he drew nearer, the speck transformed into a withered old man, startling him with legs, arms, torso bent into a gale.  But it was worse yet.  He finally recognized the shape as a young girl.  People didn't walk along his road, not out here in the middle of nowhere.  Not a girl, certainly not in this weather."

Does this one appeal to you?  I'm looking forward to beginning this one soon.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

New Books

I've been a bit lax about updating new book received for review.  Here are the latest books that arrived by mail for review. Have you read any of these?

Saturday, October 6, 2018

After Anna; Lisa Scottoline

TITLE: After Anna
AUTHOR: Lisa Scotoline
PUBLISHER: Macmillan
PUB. YEAR: 2018
FORMAT:  - audio
RATING: 3/5 stars

Dr. Noah Alderman was a widower with a young son, Caleb. Now remarried to Maggie, life is good for the threesome. Caleb, 10, a boy with a communication disorder is really beginning to open up to Maggie.  Maggie was previously married, she has not seen her daughter, Anna, since she was an infant.  Maggie suffered from post-partum psychosis and her infant daughter was raised by her ex and his second wife.

When Maggie's ex and his new family is killed in a plane crash, Maggie receives an unexpected call from Anna, now 17, who had been at an elite boarding school in NH.  When mother and daughter meet, the two soon decide that Anna will come home to live with Maggie, Noah and Caleb.  It isn't long before trouble brews at the Alderman household and when tragedy strikes and Anna ends up dead, Noah is accused of her murder.

The story is told from the Before Anna and After Anna POV,  the After Anna, is a courtroom trial setting.  This is a story that started out strong even though the characters were not likable and one-dimensional.  The story then takes a strange twist and, although the twist deals with a very serious issue, it felt so rushed leaving me disappointed.  It's too bad as I've enjoyed this author in the past.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

The Trauma Cleaner; Sarah Krasnostein

AUTHOR: Sarah Krasnostein
PUBLISHER: St. Martin's Press
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Australia
FORMAT:  - print - library
RATING: 2.5/5 stars

When I first learned about this book, I thought it was a book of stories about a woman whose business, Specialized Trauma Cleaning Services (STC), did the specialized work, few people would ever want to do: cleaning up crime scenes, places where unattended deaths and suicides occurred, drug shooting galleries, hoarders houses etc. Those were the stories I was hoping to read about. The book is written by Sarah Krasnostein who followed Sandra P to at least 20 job sites around Melbourne, Australia over a period of about 4 years. The title, however, is very misleading.

The book is more of a memoir/biography. Yes, it does elaborate on the various jobs that Sandra Pankhurst has performed. She seemed to have a way of making her clients accept her, allowing her to do the work that needed to be done.   

In alternating chapters we read about some of her trauma cases, as well, as information about her horrible childhood, early marriage and fathering two sons (and abandoning them) all prior to her transgender surgery in the 1980s. We also read about her life as a prostitute and drag queen, life of abuse and violence and descent into drugs and alcohol.

Sandra Pankhurst is an unreliable narrator, now in her early 60s, who is losing her memory due to years of drug abuse and alcoholism. She is also is in need of a lung transplant and needs an oxygen tank to breath. Because of these serious health issues,  I really wasn't sure how much I was reading was accurate or what was embellished. I thought that the writing style was at times off putting - things that happened in the past were written in the 3rd person present, and, the author seemed to over do the praise, respect and compliments about Sandra.  For me this was more than a little disappointing.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Unsheltered; Barbara Kingsolver

TITLE: Unsheltered
AUTHOR: Barbara Kingsolver
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Vineland, New Jersey
FORMAT:  - eGalley & ARC
RATING: 3.5/5 stars

Unsheltered is a story about the loss of the American Dream. The novel tells two stories in two different time periods, both stories take place in the community of Vineland, New Jersey and even the same, somewhat run down house.  

The present story features Willa Knox, her husband Iano, a college professor,  and adult children Zeke and daughter Tig.  Nick, the cranky, racist, FIL is also in the picture.  He has a difficult personality and is also dying of cancer. Son Zeke, with an Ivy League education and $100,000 of debt, has been dealt yet another bad blow.  When his bread winner girlfriend commits suicide, Zeke is forced to return home to his parents with his infant son in tow. Added to their other challenges is daughter Tig,  free-spirited, argumentative and just plain exasperating at times.

So just when Willa and her husband should be at a point in their lives when they should be able to kick back a bit and begin to enjoy the fruits of their labors, they must deal with a house that is falling apart, job losses, additional mouths to feed and an uncertain financial future. 

The second story, set around 1871 involves Thatcher Greenwood, a new science teacher and Mary Treat, a lover and believer of science and plants. Thatcher is met with obstacles when he tries to promote the theories of Charles Darwin.

I really loved the present day story, but, found myself less than thrilled with the 150 year old storyline. The writing was good but, it felt like the author tried too hard to cover too many controversial, political issues: the living wage, healthcare rights, Obamacare, student loans etc., Even though I agree with many of these issues, it just seemed preachy and out of place at times.  I've enjoyed almost everything that Kingsolver has written, and although I'm glad I read this one, it just wasn't my favorite.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros - Waking Up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race; Debby Irving

Each Tuesday, Vicki, from I’d Rather Be At The Beach hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where  readers post the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book that they are reading or plan to read.

Elephant Room Press - 2014

What Wasn't Said
"Lessons my mother couldn't teach me."

"WHATEVER HAPPENED TO ALL THE INDIANS?" I asked my mother on a Friday morning ride home from the library. I was five years old.

The library's main draw for me had always been a large, colorful mural located high on the lobby wall.  It featured three feathered and fringed Indians standing with four colonial men on a lush, green lakeshore.  The colonists didn't hold much interest, perhaps because these were images familiar to me, a white New England girl with colonial ancestors.  The dark-skinned Indians and their "exotic" dress, on the other hand took my breath away.  The highlight of my library excursions was sitting in a chair and gazing up at the Indians on the wall while my mother chatted with the librarians checking out our family's weekly reading supply."

When I first read about this book on JoAnn's blog, I knew it was one I wanted to read. 

What do you think about the intro?

Monday, October 1, 2018

Severance, Ling Ma

TITLE: Severance
PUBLISHER: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
PUB. YEAR: 2018
FORMAT:  - eGalley
RATING: 4/5 stars

Candace Chen is a millennial daughter of Chinese immigrant parents who are recently deceased.  She spends her days in a NY office tower doing routine work at a publishing company that is producing the Gemstone Bibles which are manufactured in China to cut costs. She doesn't mind going to work, it fills her days since her parents have died and she looks forward to spending evenings with her boyfriend watching movies.

When Shen Fever, a plague of biblical proportions, hits NY from China, at first Candace barely notices. She soon becomes one of the last few employees as victims soon become zombie-like creatures as a result of their mundane jobs.  While survivors like Candace know they won't be able to make it on their own forever, she and others must decide whether "The Facility", a place to escape to and begin anew is the right thing for them.

First off, this book is not the kind of book I would normally be drawn to, but, I liked the premise and wanted to try it. The writing is excellent. The author does an amazing job of weaving the story of Candace's parents immigrant experience, their life and beliefs with what she is experiencing in the present.  The writing is so funny at times as well, from office satire to apocalyptic tale, it's a quirky look at alternatives to rote office jobs.  I thought the first person narrative worked well and fell in love with Candace and the social and political aspects of this story.  If you are up for something a bit different, be sure to try this one.