7.11.2014

Offbeat Reads

Not everything has to be black-and-white, straightforward fiction...sometimes you have to mix it up a bit...

The Art of Floating by Kristin Bair O'Keefe is just such a read. Novelist Sia Dane hasn't really lived since her husband Jackson went to get coffee one morning and simply disappeared. She only begins to rejoin the real world when, walking along the beach one day with her dog, she happens upon a man in a suit, sopping wet, and totally mute. Sia becomes determined to help him however she can, while still holding out hope for her own lost man. A great cast of characters and some lovely magical realism, the real star of this novel, though, is the amazing WRITING. Each chapter is a little gift, a quirky mix of words, a total shake-up of the expected structure. I loved it for that reason especially - and the story too!

We Are the Goldens by Dana Reinhardt is a young adult novel that's a bit tough to characterize. Nell is the younger sister of Layla, and she is trying to figure out why there is a growing distance between them as high school continues on (though, the answer is pretty loudly telegraphed throughout). It's written in a weird second-person narrative that's hard to follow sometimes - Nell is talking to/writing to/narrating to Layla their own story? Odd. Plus, the ending is so very abrupt and unsatisfying, I actually wondered if there was a sequel, but...no. Hrm.

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