Devolution Book Review

Summary: As the ash and chaos from Mount Rainier’s eruption swirled and finally settled, the story of the Greenloop massacre has passed unnoticed, unexamined . . . until now.

But the journals of resident Kate Holland, recovered from the town’s bloody wreckage, capture a tale too harrowing–and too earth-shattering in its implications–to be forgotten.

In these pages, Max Brooks brings Kate’s extraordinary account to light for the first time, faithfully reproducing her words alongside his own extensive investigations into the massacre and the legendary beasts behind it.

Kate’s is a tale of unexpected strength and resilience, of humanity’s defiance in the face of a terrible predator’s gaze, and inevitably, of savagery and death.

Yet it is also far more than that.

Because if what Kate Holland saw in those days is real, then we must accept the impossible. We must accept that the creature known as Bigfoot walks among us–and that it is a beast of terrible strength and ferocity.

Part survival narrative, part bloody horror tale, part scientific journey into the boundaries between truth and fiction, this is a Bigfoot story as only Max Brooks could chronicle it–and like none you’ve ever read before.

Thoughts: Thank You to NetGalley and Random House Publishing for the advanced copy in exchange for my review.

When I saw that Max Brooks had written another book, I knew that I had to read it. Especially since I had just finished re-reading World War Z and analyzing it to help my mom with an English course she took. This one is a completely different book from that one but I loved it just the same.

I really enjoy that this reads like a found journal even if that takes away from some of the suspense. For example: you know the main character is going to be fine at least until the end of the story or else how would she be writing all this. While you know that she’ll be okay you still wonder what is going to happen to the rest of the characters in the story. The way that things are written allow you to get attached to some of the people that she is living with.

Something else that I enjoyed was that there were articles and interviews included along with the journal entries. It makes the whole book read more like a news story and something occurring in real time. I really love how Max Brooks makes it feel like you are reading non fiction, like this is a retelling of a news story that happened. It was a great escape from what is actually happening in the world at this time in the pandemic.

I love how the narrator of this story is an anxious person because you can feel her anxiety and panic every time something big happens. You can see it and feel her emotions in her writing even if she writes after events already took place. It’s as if she never really leaves the scenes where these impactful events occur. I love how you see her go from this anxious person to a person who has more control over her life.

I recommend this to those of you who enjoyed Max Brooks other works or who are interested in Sasquatch.

You can pre order this book at Barnes and Noble, Eso Won Bookstore, or look for it at your local library coming June 16th.

Lab Partners Book Review

Net Galley Summary: Sometimes you don’t know who you love, until they love you . . .

When Jordan Hughes arrives at Pinecrest High School, Elliot Goldman’s graduating year suddenly gets a lot more interesting. Smart, good looking and charming, Jordan isn’t exactly the kind of person Elliot’s used to having as a lab partner. But when they start acing their assignments, life is suddenly about more than boring lectures, bad cafeteria nachos, or relentless bullying, and for the first time ever, Elliot can’t wait to get to chemistry class.

As they start spending more time together outside of school, Elliot realizes he’s never met anyone quite like Jordan. And then everything changes one night when Jordan kisses him, making Elliot question everything about their relationship and about himself. The butterflies start to make sense―the trouble is, right now, nothing else does.

Love was the last thing on Elliot’s mind. But as he begins to figure out how he really feels about Jordan, he realizes that sometimes the last thing you are looking for is the one thing you need the most.

Thoughts: Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the advanced copy of this book in exchange for my review.

I will always give a LGBTQ+ a try so this was no different. I’m glad I gave this a try, I really do love friends to lovers stories. While this was a cute love story there were parts that I couldn’t really enjoy.

While the start of the book was pretty slow and was giving a play by play of every day, there were some good parts. I really enjoyed the friendship that started between the two boys and how we dont get romance from the start. I liked how we got to know the boys families and lives outside of each other a little.

I enjoyed how these boys didnt have romantic feelings for each other from the start and how they were friends first. I liked watching their friendship develop over time and seeing them get to know each other. I loved that they still were getting to know each other as their relationship went on.

The discussion that Elliot has with his sister regarding sexuality seems out of place and something out of a textbook. The whole thing just doesnt flow and him just kind of accepting himself seems strange when just a few seconds ago he was freaking out. I spent some time thinking about it and realized it’s very similar to when I realized I was into girls, all it took was someone putting the thought into my head. I think while it reads strangely for some teenagers it really just kind of clicks the way it does for Elliot.

A lot of things kind of were skimmed over or just taken foregranted through the story and just felt out of place. I felt that some of the moments that should’ve taken more time were rushed through leaving little room for the reader to feel anything. I wanted there to be more room for Elliot to process things that were happening to him.

The ending just kind of infuriates me, I feel that there was a better way to deal with these bullies. I keep seeing YA books that deal with bullying in a similar manner, where the adults are useless so they seek revenge. I’m not a fan of this being the way to deal with things and the revenge sought in this book is a bit distasteful. I felt that the third thing they did was the only thing that should’ve been done and the rest was too much.

Once the problem of bullying is resolved the book kind of quickly speeds through. Each chapter is pretty short and reads like a slice of elliot’s life rather than the ending of a book. The ending really made me not enjoy the book as I wanted it to have more of a closing.

You can get this book at Barnes and Noble or look for it at your local library.