Tag Archives: Fave Reads

Review: Piranesi

Piranesi

Piranesi
By Susanna Clarke
Bloomsbury Publishing, 9781635577808, September 2021, 272pp.

The Short of It:

Wildly imaginative. 

The Rest of It:

Our main character is called Piranesi, although he knows this is not his real name. He lives in a house with many halls and rooms. Each room is filled with beautiful statues in various stages of decomposition. Many, damaged by the birds or the harsh salt water environment. Because you see, this “house” has been taken over by the tides and the sea life within it. Fog rolls in. Rain is the only source of fresh water. Piranesi lives here with one Other, literally called “Other” and he tends to the many remains of those who came before him. 

I am not  much of a fantasy reader but from page two, I was completely sucked into this story. For one, the writing is lovely. Two, I could “see” this house in my mind. And although it’s a lonely kind of story, Piranesi is a happy person, content with keeping track of the tides and his research. But as you read, many questions come to mind. How did he get there? What has happened to civilization? Why doesn’t he leave?

I read an interview with the author and how she was suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome while writing this. How she felt so isolated from the real world, while tending to her debilitating illness. This definitely played a role in how the story plays out. The isolation is palpable but so is hope. 

This story is so different and refreshing. There’s enough of a mystery to pull you in, but your heart will be with Piranesi as he tries to piece this all together. It’s a fascinating read. I really need to own a nice physical copy of this one. I can see myself picking it up again to read soon. A classic. 

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review: The Family Plot

The Family Plot

The Family Plot
By Megan Collins
Atria Books, 9781982163846, August 2021, 320pp.

The Short of It:

The Family Plot is one of those “treat” reads. One that makes you love reading all over again.

The Rest of It:

At twenty-six, Dahlia Lighthouse is haunted by her upbringing. Raised in a secluded island mansion deep in the woods and kept isolated by her true crime-obsessed parents, she is unable to move beyond the disappearance of her twin brother, Andy, when they were sixteen.

After several years away and following her father’s death, Dahlia returns to the house, where the family makes a gruesome discovery: buried in their father’s plot is another body—Andy’s, his skull split open with an ax. ~ Indiebound

Let’s just say that discovering her missing brother’s body in her own backyard is enough to make Dahlia lose all hope in her true-crime obsessed family. Andy was her twin, but he was also everything to her. Basically, the other half of who she was. Losing her brother at the age of sixteen, with his “goodbye” note the only thing left behind, meant that she saw him every time she turned a corner, searched endlessly online for him, and basically lost touch with her two other siblings because they didn’t seem to understand the depth of her loss. They had each other, and she had no one.

When their father dies and they all return home it’s not a happy homecoming at all. Too many memories buried in that house. They were raised by parents who were obsessed with true crime, specifically the local murders which involved many young women, and the killer was never found. Their walls covered with the news of those murders, gruesome pictures and even dioramas that Dahlia’s sister constructed as a way to work through the horror.

When Andy’s body is discovered in their own backyard, Dahlia cannot make sense of it. He’s been gone all this time and yet, he was right there. How did he end up there? Who killed him? Is it related to the other killings on the island?

This was a marvelous read. Fun, twisty, not that predictable. I enjoyed spending time with this quirky family and I could not turn the pages fast enough. I was hoping it would be good but it will probably end up on my fave list at the end of the year. I was happily surprised by how much I loved this one.

Recommend.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.