Wednesday, August 27, 2014

This Side of the River

This Side of the River
File Size: 625 KB
Print Length: 49 pages
Publisher: Tom Darin Liskey; First edition (August 3, 2014)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English

Idgie Says:
This is a Novella containing 4 short stories about a boy.  A boy who remains unnamed throughout the story and also remains lost and abandoned through most of the book, even while surrounded by family. 

Very well written, with a story that digs deep into the heartstrings.

A perfect ebook novel for your phone or tablet, you can read a story at a time in short bursts or spend your lunch hour reading all four.   

If you go to the bottom of this post I have a link to a short story Tom wrote for the Dew, which will give you a good flavor taste of his writing.


Book Description:
This Side of The River chronicles a time and place where vengeance and reconciliation both hang in the balance with the same weight. It is about a broken family trying to make sense of the chaotic world around them in a post-Vietnam War Midwestern state. These are stories written against the backdrop of new beginnings, even when hope remains elusive and out of grasp. The main characters in this book are the oft-overlooked in life: the day laborers, the single mothers just a paycheck away from a homeless shelter and a young boy searching for safe harbor in a dangerous world. These are stories in the raw about addiction, hope, and loss. The walking wounded in life looking for any crutch they can find to make it through another day.

 Click HERE to read a story published at the Dew by Tom Linsky in 2012.

Monday, August 25, 2014

A Plot for Pridemore

A Plot for Pridemore: A Novel
Mercer University Press
By author: Stephen Roth
ISBN: 9780881464825
Binding Information: Paperback

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Idgie Says:
 So you put a bunch of political townfolk, a dying town and a rather simple-minded man together and what happens?   Apparently a grand scheme to make the town come to life, while preying on the kindness of the simple-minded man in a rather lackadaisically malicious manner.  What it does is create several characters that you don't like very much at all.  

Then the plan goes South and disaster hits  with poor Digby truly stuck in the old mines and they have to get him out quickly.  Will the townfolk feel the error of their ways and not only rescue Digby but also find their humanity again, or will they suffer in shame and regret while the poor used man dies in the caves?

A wide range of characters - some interesting, some forgettable, a few truly likable -  come and go in the story, all working to either save the town, Digby or both.  

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Book Description:
For five heart-churning days, the world turns its attention to tiny Pridemore, Missouri, where rescue teams work around the clock to free a mentally challenged man from a collapsed cave. That’s how Mayor Roe Tolliver envisions it, anyway.
Weary of watching the town he’s led for more than forty years slide into economic oblivion, the mayor hatches a devious and dangerous plan—trap a local man in the bowels of nearby Dragon's Ice House cavern, start a massive rescue operation, and prompt a media vigil that puts Pridemore on the map for decades to come.
Over the course of a year, the mayor and his cronies carry out the convoluted scheme, which involves everything from bilking state money for a bogus tourist attraction to hiring a militia “ballistics consultant” to detonate the limestone cavern. Their success hinges on unassuming pawn Digby Willers, whose simple-minded likeability provides human interest in the made-for-television crisis. 
As events unfold, however, forces beyond even the mayor’s control turn Digby’s rescue into a real, life-or-death drama. Get ready for a fast-paced romp filled with quirky characters, hilarious twists and turns, and a small town that just might get its fifteen minutes of fame.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Mockingbird Next Door

The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee by Marja Mills

Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Penguin Press HC, The; 1ST edition (July 15, 2014)

Idgie Says:
Doesn't this look delicious?   An inside look at one of the most reclusive and beloved writers out there.  What does she do?  How does she think?  Why was there never another glorious book?   

I would say Marja is one lucky woman to be able to just sit on the porch with Harper and chat.  I know I'm jealous.

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One journalist’s memoir of her personal friendship with Harper Lee and her sister, drawing on the extraordinary access they gave her to share the story of their lives.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is one of the best loved novels of the twentieth century. But for the last fifty years, the novel’s celebrated author, Harper Lee, has said almost nothing on the record. Journalists have trekked to her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama, where Harper Lee, known by her friends as Nelle, has lived with her sister, Alice, for decades, trying and failing to get an interview with the author. But in 2001, the Lee sisters opened their door for Chicago Tribune reporter Marja Mills. It was the beginning of a long conversation—and a friendship that has continued ever since.

In 2004, with the Lees’ encouragement, Mills moved into the house next door to the sisters. She spent the next eighteen months there, talking and sharing stories over meals and daily drives in the countryside. Along with members of the Lees’ tight inner circle, the sisters and Mills would go fishing, feed the ducks, go to the Laundromat, watch the Crimson Tide, drink coffee at McDonald’s, and explore all over lower Alabama.

Nelle shared her love of history, literature, and the quirky Southern way of life with Mills, as well as her keen sense of how journalism should be practiced. As the sisters decided to let Mills tell their story, Nelle helped make sure she was getting the story—and the South—right. Alice, the keeper of the Lee family history, shared the stories of their family.

The Mockingbird Next Door is the story of Mills’s friendship with the Lee sisters. It is a testament to the great intelligence, sharp wit, and tremendous storytelling power of these two women, especially that of Nelle.

Mills was given a rare opportunity to know Nelle Harper Lee, to be part of the Lees’ life in Alabama, and to hear them reflect on their upbringing, their corner of the Deep South, how To Kill a Mockingbird affected their lives, and why Nelle Harper Lee chose to never write another novel.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

ETTA MAE'S WORST BAD-LUCK DAY

Etta Mae's Worst Bad-Luck DayIdgie Says:
The Miss Julia series, which is very large  - (18 books)  is taking a side road for one book to tell the story of Etta Mae, one of the town troublemakers.  Then back to Miss Julia as the star of the rest of the series. 
 
This is a somewhat saccharine sweet series of books -  light-hearted reads that entertain, but a few of the characters have remained too "cutesy" for my taste. 

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ETTA MAE'S WORST BAD-LUCK DAY

Series: Miss Julia
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Viking Adult (August 19, 2014)
Fan favorite Etta Mae Wiggins takes center stage in the latest novel in the New York Times bestselling Miss Julia series

Bestselling author Ann B. Ross is back with another lively adventure set in Miss Julia’s Abbotsville. For the first time, though, she writes from the perspective of another resident: the hardscrabble, heart-of-gold Etta Mae Wiggins. Etta Mae is frustrated with her trailer-park life and her no-good family, and she has big dreams for something better. Working as the home nurse for the elderly but wealthy Howard Connard, Senior, she finally sees her chance—with her sexy curves and infectious charm, Etta Mae is determined to become his wife. Unfortunately, Connard’s scheming, money-hungry son and stuck-up daughter-in-law are equally determined to make sure she doesn’t. To make matters worse, Etta Me’s ex-husband Skip (her first ex, that is) has shown up with a winning lottery ticket in his hand and local thugs hot on his heels. Plus, her dreamy former flame, officer Bobby Lee, keeps popping up to remind her that she’s not over him yet. In the middle of all this mayhem, Etta Mae has to get that marriage license—before it’s too late!

A hilarious wild goose chase that takes us from the mansions of Abbotsville to the trailer park that Etta Mae calls home, this book is filled with familiar faces (including Miss Julia, who narrates the first chapter), features Ann Ross’s signature wit and southern charm, and will appeal to fans of the beloved series and newcomers alike.

Etta Mae's Worst Bad-Luck DayEtta Mae Wiggins has one thing on her mind—getting to the altar before her intended’s son and daughter-in-law can stop the ceremony. Marrying Mr. Howard Connard, Senior, enfeebled though he is, looks to be the only way that Etta Mae can realize her dream of being somebody, getting ahead, and bettering herself. But scheming kinfolk aren’t the only ones standing in her way. There’s her first ex-husband who shows up with a winning lottery ticket and a pack of angry thugs on his heels. Then there are so-called friends, loose-living cops, and strait-laced Miss Julia Springer who would all stop the wedding in its tracks if they could.

And there’s her old flame—the one that’s still flickering—Officer Bobby Lee Moser, who keeps popping up all over town.

On what appears to be the worst bad-luck day of her life, Etta Mae does as she’s always done. She stays the course, pushes forward, and keeps her eyes on the prize.
From single-wide trailer to in-town mansion, from hard-scrabble living to elegant ease, and from ill-repute to respectability, Etta Mae is determined to change her life. ETTA MAE’S WORST BAD-LUCK DAY is the hilarious story of Miss Julia’s friend before she became a friend, and the moving story of one woman who, against the odds, tries so hard.