The dusty files of a venerable dictionary publisher, a hidden cache of coded clues, a story written by a phantom author, an unsolved murder in a gritty urban park: all collide memorably in Emily Arsenault's magnificent debut, at once a teasing literary puzzle, an ingenious suspense novel, and an exploration of definitions: of words, of who we are, and of the stories we choose to define us.
"Enjoyable Book with Great Characters"
Frances Barnett and Abby Bernacki are two haunted young mothers living in the same house in two different centuries. In 1885, Frances Barnett is in the Northampton Lunatic Hospital, telling her story to a visitor. She has come to distrust her own memories and believes that her pregnancy, birth, and early days of motherhood may have impaired her sanity.
"The ending made the whole book a waste of time."
When Theresa agrees to dog-sit Kim’s puggle for a weekend, she has no idea that it is the beginning of a terrifying nightmare that will shatter her quiet world. Scandal, love, family, and murder combine in this gripping literary mystery by critically acclaimed author Emily Arsenault, in which a young academic’s life is turned upside down when her brother is arrested for murder and she must prove his innocence.
"Enough twists to hold your interest"
Eleven-year-olds Nora and Charlotte were best friends. When their teenage babysitter, Rose, disappeared under mysterious circumstances, the girls decided to investigate. But their search - aided by paranormal theories and techniques gleaned from old Time-Life books - went nowhere. Years later, Nora, now in her late 20s, is drawn back to her old neighborhood - and to her estranged friend - when Rose's remains are finally discovered.
"Well written images but a tedious story"
Gretchen Waters' writing career is cut abruptly short when she dies from a fall down a set of stone library steps. It is a tragic accident and no one suspects foul play, certainly not Gretchen's best friend from college, Jamie, who's been named the late author's literary executor. But there's an unfinished manuscript Gretchen left behind that is much darker than Tammyland: a book ostensibly about male country musicians yet centered on a murder in Gretchen's family that haunted her childhood.
"well written but not really a mystery"