Notown (Book One: The Midnight Valley Quartet
By Tess Collins
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Publication Date: April 12, 2013
Randi Jo Gaylor’s family is poorer than dirt. Yet the little girl survives with an optimistic attitude despite imagining a Fear Angel haunts her. Through four decades, she covers up murder and betrayal by others until a threat against her daughter forces her to take an action she never thought herself capable of… killing a man she’d once loved.
I received a copy for review via Netgalley.
I chose to read this book based on its name and the fact that it is not part of my usual reading regime.
I am so glad I did this.
This life, the life of Randi Jo Gaylor is colored by the politics of the day although she herself is so involved in survival that she hardly ever notices its effect directly or indirectly. The author does an amazing job in making the passage of time and changing of the political scenery another character in the book. One which speaks by saying very little and anchoring the reader not only in place but also in time.
The struggles of this woman, the choices she makes to survive and never even questioning why she is not in a position to thrive is moving, addictive and moving.
I found myself cheering for Randi Jo. Wishing some characters dead and hoping some awful fate will befall some others. Never did I grow tired or feel as if her life story is contrived. Living with her through trials and tribulations I often sat wondering if I would have made a choice other than that of Randi? As this kept on I realized that the choices were dictated long before Randi was even born.
A brilliant story of life lived in some pretty horrible situations. Character driven the reader is bound not to become bored since one event follows the next in quick succession and the reader needs to take a break to get one. The author does not really allow many breathers in a story where nobody's next breath is guaranteed.
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