In “The Girls I’ve Been,” Tess Sharpe’s brilliant writing draws us into the lives of the three teens at the center of this young adult thriller. We meet them just as they are on the cusp of being held hostage at their local bank in rural California, and from the first chapter (the chapters are labeled with the time, and the amount of time that has elapsed since they were taken captive), we are mesmerized by Nora and her extraordinary narration of the events that are happening both in the present and also as she intersperses the present narration with snippets of her past that serve to explain who Nora is now.Continue reading
In “Joint Custody,” authors Lauren Baratz-Logsted and Jackie Logsted tell the story of love lost, and they tell it through the eyes — and mouth — of Gatz, a rescue dog much beloved by the main characters. Gatz is not your typical dog. He knows poetry and literature and can discuss synonyms. On the very first page, he paraphrases Dickens. Of course, there’s the fact that The Man and The Woman, the two most important people in his life, are an author (published, thank you) and an editor, so the fantasy makes perfect sense in a very “you must completely suspend your disbelief” type of way.
If after reading this new exposé of the pet food industry, “Big Kibble: The Hidden Dangers of the Pet Food Industry and How to Do Better by Our Dogs” by Shawn Buckley and Dr. Oscar Chavez, you don’t decide to try to change how you feed your cat or dog, I don’t want to know what’s in your own refrigerator. While some of what is in this new nonfiction release is not news to savvy pet caregivers (I like to consider myself at least somewhat savvy), there is plenty to shock them.Continue reading