Nutshell by Ian McEwan

When my book club pals suggested we read Nutshell, the selling point was “you won’t believe the point of view.” Our club has read books that tell stories from the point of view of a dog, a dead girl, a drunk, and a madman, so sure, I was game to read this book. The other selling point was the author was Ian McEwan. I have a deep readers’ passion for his elegant, breathtakingly beautiful story Atonement. We were all in for the ride.

I suspect the point of view for Nutshell was decided on a dare from other writers, over drinks. Something along the line of, “Bet ya can’t find a new point of view no one has ever done before.”

And McEwan, being the talented award-winning author he is, probably said, “Hold my beer.”

He tells a story of marital discord from the point of view of a fetus. Yes, a fetus.

McEwan has done far more with this story than readers might expect simply because he is a masterful storyteller. There are a few cheats, places in the story in which the main character knows things he could not. And this fetus has McEwan’s vocabulary. I had to look up the meaning of lambent (glowing), cludgie (bathroom), and exequy (funeral rites). Thanks for that.

As a book lover, I had to suspend my disbelief with both hands, high overhead, page by page to the bitter end.

This is my least favorite McEwan book. The literary critics will no doubt hail it as brilliant, groundbreaking, mind-expanding prose. Which will inevitably lead to imitators, heaven protect us. Just as Anne Rice revived interest in vampire stories, should we expect more stories told from in utero? Or will the millennial authors go one step further with stories told from the perspective of inanimate objects, possibly a murder weapon or a pen? Please, no more explorations of life from a womb. Let’s all agree it’s been done and move on.

I admire McEwan’s talent so much I will read his next book, and try to forget about this one for reminding me with every page that the writer was at work.

The Rusted Scalpel: A Medical Thriller

The Rusted Scalpel is Timothy Browne, MD’s best book yet! This medical thriller creates a you-are-there feel as Orthopedic Surgeon Nicklaus Hart struggles with sudden blindness. His disability forces him to reevaluate life as he knew it. With his career gone, he struggles with everything he previously took for granted.

cover of the medical thriller The Rusted Scalpel by Timothy Browne MDThis taut, suspenseful medical thriller draws the reader from Montana to exotic Singapore, to India, and to the remote areas of Borneo once known as the land of the headhunters. The memorable characters drive the story from one man’s struggle into the broader human battle between good and evil. Goodness and seductive evil reveal themselves slowly from the gray areas, one decision at a time, to the breath-taking conclusion.

This is the finest story in the Nicklaus Hart series of medical thrillers. Browne has the background as an orthopedic surgeon and as a medical missionary to write vivid thrillers set in the remote and forbidding ends of the earth.

Okay, I confess. Sometimes I buy a book because of the cover. In this case, I bought the book because I love medical thrillers, but wowza, what a gorgeous cover.

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

Before We Were YoursBefore We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Part history, part horror, part inspiration, the story Before We Were Yours explores the true-life crimes of the Memphis Tennesse Children’s Home Society whose unregulated adoption practices tore families apart. The story is told from two points of view, one from the past, and one from the present. Wingate’s elegant prose drives the story deep into the reader’s heart. An excellent choice for book clubs who enjoy historical fiction, women’s fiction, and literary fiction.

A tribute to the power of the human spirit and the love of family, this story reveals its depth in layers at an easy pace.

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Everything We Keep by Kerry Lonsdale

Everything We KeepEverything We Keep by Kerry Lonsdale
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This story had everything I want in a book–suspense, romance, mystery, memorable characters, and depth of story. It accelerates from chapter to chapter with twists and turns and shocks along the way. Her lifelong best friend and fiance dies just before their wedding. She seeks meaning and answers. The story tells her journey to the truth. This book stuck in my hand until the very end. Be sure to review the book on Amazon after you read it. Reviews help authors, even bestselling authors like Kerry!
Everything We Keep

I had the joy of meeting Kerry Lonsdale at a writer’s conference in Albuquerque last year. As I was telling her how much I loved her book, she snapped a photo of us for her social media

Authors Kerry Lonsdale and Joni M Fisher

followers. If you enjoyed her book, give South of Justice a read. Both books feature strong women struggling to find out the truth about the man to whom they have pledged love and life.

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