ARC Review: The Summer That Melted Everything by Tiffany McDaniel

The Summer That Melted Everything by Tiffany McDaniel

Publication: August 11st 2016 by Scribe UK

Format: Paperback Pages: 320

ISBN13: 9781925228519

Fielding Bliss has never forgotten the summer of 1984: the year a heatwave scorched the small town of Breathed, Ohio. The year he became friends with the devil.

When local prosecutor Autopsy Bliss publishes an invitation to the devil to come to the country town of Breathed, Ohio, nobody quite expected that he would turn up. They especially didn’t expect him to turn up a tattered and bruised thirteen-year-old boy.

Fielding, the son of Autopsy, finds the boy outside the courthouse and brings him home, and he is welcomed into the Bliss family. The Blisses believe the boy, who calls himself Sal, is a runaway from a nearby farm town. Then, 

as a series of strange incidents implicate Sal — and riled by the feverish heatwave baking the town from the inside out — there are some around town who start to believe that maybe Sal is exactly who he claims to be.

But whether he’s a traumatised child or the devil incarnate, Sal is certainly one strange fruit: he talks in riddles, his uncanny knowledge and understanding reaches far outside the realm of a normal child — and ultimately his eerily affecting stories of Heaven, Hell, and earth will mesmerise and enflame the entire town.

Devastatingly beautiful, The Summer That Melted Everything is a captivating story about community, redemption, and the dark places where evil really lies. Goodreads.

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Fear by Stefan Zweig

Fear by Stefan Zweig

Publication: January 5th 2010 by Pushkin Collection

Format: Paperback Pages: 112

ISBN13: 9781906548186

Finding her comfortable bourgeois existence as wife and mother predictable after eight years of marriage, Irene Wagner brings a little excitement into it by starting an affair with a rising young pianist. Her lover’s former mistress begins blackmailing her, threatening to give her secret away to her husband. Irene is soon in the grip of agonizing fear.
Written in the spring of 1913, and first published in 1920, this novella is one of Stefan Zweig’s most powerful studies of a woman’s mind and emotions. 

La Paura (1954) the Roberto Rossellini film based on the Stefan Zweig novel Fear was the last of the extraordinary features in which Rossellini directed Ingrid Bergman, who was then his wife.

Pushkin Collection editions feature a spare, elegant series style and superior, durable components. The Collection is typeset in Monotype Baskerville, litho-printed on Munken Premium White Paper and notch-bound by the independently owned printer TJ International in Padstow. The covers, with French flaps, are printed on Colorplan Pristine White Paper. Both paper and cover board are acid-free and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified. – Goodreads.

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The Greek Myths by Robert Graves

If you’re looking for a ‘does everything’ collection of Greek mythology, this is it. Seriously, The Greek Myths is all you need. I’d read tidbits of Greek mythology when I was younger and had a general idea of what was up in Olympus, but I found my knowledge insufficient during my time as a Literature student (and most of it wrong!). No, you don’t have to have a brilliant understanding of Greek mythology if you’re studying Literature, but it sure does help. So, if you’re going to study English Literature at university, get this and thank me later. 

The Greek Myths (published by Folio Society) is made up of two volumes. Volume I covers all of the stories from ‘Beginnings’ to ‘Crete and Theseus’ and Volume II covers ‘Thebes’ to ‘Odysseus’. You get both volumes in this collection.

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Both volumes have the same covers, and they have maps behind the front and back covers. The maps are detailed and useful guides; I kept returning to them while reading the stories.

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The Greek Myths is perfect for anyone interested in Greek mythology, whether you’re a beginner or an expert. You don’t have to be a Literature (or Classics) student to appreciate a collection of well-written awesomeness. What I particularly loved about this collection was that Graves gives you alternative versions of each story. For example, Volume I begins by giving detailed but easy-to-digest accounts of ‘The Homeric and Orphic Creation Myths’, ‘The Olympian Creation Myth’, ‘Two Philosophical Creation Myths’, and ‘The Five Ages of Man’.

Each volume also includes black and white illustrations!  The following illustration is from Volume I – ‘Zeus and Metis’.

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As there are so many stories and different versions of each story, it’s easy to get lost in Greek mythology. I felt like this collection handled the job exceptionally well; you can read each volume start to finish without getting confused because of how well organised they are. I’d suggest reading each volume this way and then returning to specific sections when/if required. That way, you already have an overall understanding of Greek mythology, and you can just return to reinforce details.

I purchased the collection a while ago and couldn’t find it on the Folio Society website. Unfortunately, the collection is no longer printed by Folio Society. However, you can still find it on Amazon!  I found this seller after a quick search, but there are other sellers too (some selling it for less).

 

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A Mother’s Secret by Renita D’Silva

A Mother’s Secret by Renita D’Silva

Publication: April 07th 2016 by Bookouture

Format: eBook Pages: 352

ASIN: B01BRTXBDA

‘What if you discovered that everything you knew about yourself was a lie?
When pregnant Jaya loses her mother, then her baby son Arun in a tragic cot death, her world crashes down. Overcome by grief and guilt, she begins to search for answers – to the enigma of her lonely, distant mother, and her mysterious past in India.

Looking through her mother’s belongings, she finds two diaries and old photographs, carrying the smoky aroma of fire. A young boy smiles out at Jaya from every photograph – and in one, a family stand proudly in front of a sprawling mansion. Who is this child? And why did her mother treasure this memento of a regal family lost to the past? 

As Jaya starts to read the diaries, their secrets lead her back to India, to the ruin of a once grand house on a hill. There, Kali, a mad old lady, will unlock the story of a devastating lie and a fire that tore a family apart.

Nothing though will prepare Jaya for the house’s final revelation, which will change everything Jaya knew about herself. ‘ Goodreads

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Rarity from the Hollow by Robert Eggleton

Rarity from the Hollow by Robert Eggleton

Publication: June 16th 2012 by Dog Horn Publishing

Format: Paperback Pages: 286

ISBN13: 9781907133060

‘Lacy Dawn is a little girl who lives in a magical forest where all the trees love her and she has a space alien friend who adores her and wants to make her queen of the universe. What’s more, all the boys admire her for her beauty and brains. Mommy is very beautiful and Daddy is very smart, and Daddy’s boss loves them all.
Except.
Lacy Dawn, the eleven year old protagonist, perches precariously between the psychosis of childhood and the multiple neuroses of adolescence, buffeted by powerful gusts of budding sexuality and infused with a yearning to escape the grim and brutal life of a rural Appalachian existence. In this world, Daddy is a drunk with severe PTSD, and Mommy is an insecure wraith. The boss is a

dodgy lecher, not above leering at the flat chest of an eleven-year-old girl.
Yes, all in one book.
It is a children’s story for adults with a happily ever after ending.’ – Goodreads

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