If poetry could be prose then Nova Ren Suma would be the Beatles of it. Her lyrical and often mesmerizing phrasing pulls beauty and atmosphere off the page and fills your senses. Much like an pointillist painter gives you a whole scene from afar but it becomes a blur of tiny points of paint the closest one gets to the portrait.
Parker Peevyhouse turns out a solid 3.5 star debut in Echo room, which begins with a ground hog day motif. This tool could have dragged on but works because like Rhett and Brynn, readers have no clue what is happening.
Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani interlaces coming of age rituals, best friends and foreshadowing to set-up the fictional retelling of 2014's terrorist raid of a Nigerian village based on the stories of those women that survived.
When I'm wrong I say I'm wrong. And 1) this was my very first review. 2) I didn't know enough about the blogosphere to have found out that this was not a stand alone book. If I had. If you look at the last paragraph of my blog. You would see that I was begging, pleading for a second book. With that in mind there are still one or two things that are still a bit on the predictable side that I'll leave below but I'm going to tweak my review to better match what I believe will be an solid series that will be better with each book (aka I expect this to be the lowest rated of the trilogy).
What are the rules of the Fight Club? You do not talk about Fight Club. You DO NOT talk about Fight Club! If someone yells "stop!", goes limp, or taps out, the fight is over. Fourth rule: only two guys to a fight. You might be asking why I'm bringing up Fight Club in a review of Sacrifice Box but lets be honest. Is there ever not a good time to bring up Fight Club? And did it ever go well to break the rules of Fight Club? Right. Plus, like Fight club, this box has a set of rules. Never come to the box alone. Never open it after Dark. Never take back your sacrifice. All seems straightforward, right? When is anything straight forward for twelve-year-olds I ask you. Taking a lot of the best parts of Stephen King, Stewart starts off Stand by Me and goes straight to It in Final Jeopardy, without the thirty-year time skip (well, not for Mack, Hadley, Lamb, Arkle, and Sept).
Spoiler and Trigger Warnings: Self-Cutting/harm, child abuse, alcoholism, incest (kind of- but we'll get to that in a minute) Let's just say if I was writing a report card for Rule, I would say it had an inquisitive mind. It is a shame really because character building starts off particularly strong. You have three very different sisters from extremely different backgrounds, classes and worlds (although at times their personalities seem to mush together).
Heartbreaker is the most character driven book I have read, possibly ever. Here’s the kicker. One of the most essential characters is the setting of the book: The Territory. Turning the setting, remnants of cult in the 1980s, down to one original member, into an essential character of the book is no easy task but Dey does it without skipping a beat. She does it by using the Territory to fill the spaces between heartbeats with a chilling frost that doesn’t let go and keeps you guessing until the end.