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Tag Archives: PTSD

Maisie Dobbs, by Jacqueline Winspear

Maisie Dobbs is unlike any other book I’ve ever read. And.. Maisie is unlike any other detective I’ve ever read about. She is the epitome of rising above stereotypes and circumstances, and an inspiration to me. 

The mystery in this first Maisie Dobbs novel is interwoven with a heartachingly told tale of love found and snatched away by the cruelty of war. It tells of Maisie’s early years and how she comes from an impoverished family… and doesn’t let anything stop her or stand in the way of learning everything she can. Her background story is told bit by bit as it fits into the mystery storyline. A voracious reader, hard worker, and loyal friend, Maisie Dobbs uses her uniquely perceptive approach to detective work to solve nontraditional cases. 

This book was my first by Jacqueline Winspear, and I really found it a delight. Rita Barrington was an excellent choice for the reading of the audio book; she occasionally switched accents/dialects in the middle of what someone was saying, which I found a little confusing, but I would listen to more books read by her. 

I would liken this book to a cup of tea. Sweet, but not overly. There’s a lot of hard in this story, but it’s beautiful at the same time. 

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If I Live, by Terri Blackstock 

Terri Blackstock did such an amazing job with this trilogy. If you haven’t read the first two books (If I Run and If I’m Found), please read those before you pick up this one to read. You’re going to want to have all three on hand once you begin though.. because that’s the best way to read these – straight through! 

I love the way these books were written, with the parts relevant to each individual book wrapping up at the end of that installment, while the big picture story draws you into the next book effortlessly. 

I don’t want to say much about the story. It’s too easy to give away important information with this series. The story of Casey is continued in If I Live, as she remains on the run, the false accusation that she murdered her friend close on her heels. 

The ending was, for me, kind of bittersweet. I wasn’t disappointed at all, but… now this trilogy is over.. and even though I will be rereading these books, it’s just not the same. 

Comparing this book/series with food, I think I’ll go with scrambled eggs. Scrambled eggs have substance, yet are quick to make and eat. These books are quick reads but they aren’t fluff. They have substance. 

 

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If I’m Found, by Terri Blackstock 

You know that point when you get to almost the end of a book and you must keep turning pages at the speed of an airplane? That’s this book. Actually, it’s this series. (Please read If I Run before this one. While some things wrap up at the end of the individual books, you’ll miss out on the heart of the main story, because it goes way beyond these individual titles.)

If I’m Found follows Casey’s continuing flight for her life after being accused of murdering her friend. It finds her where the first book has left her… wondering where she can go that she’ll be safe for a little while. 

One of the discussion questions Terri Blackstock has included at the back of this book is, “What is the key thing about this book that will stay with you?” Discussion questions in books are kind of a hit or miss thing for me, but I really appreciated this one. The key thing that will stay with me from this book? Its emphasis on light. In the midst of so much darkness, it would be easy for Casey to focus on that, to only see the darkness of the evil surrounding her. But she sees a glimmer of light every now and then, a little reminder that she can still have hope. She is trying so desperately to embrace the fact that, though evil may put up a good facade and it may be spreading its lies, it will not win. Not in the end. 

I really contemplated what food could correlate with this book, and.. you know those energy cookie bites that are all over pinterest? Yeah.. that’s what I have to go with. This is such an energetic book. So fast-paced that sometimes you’re not sure you’re actually sitting still.

 

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