Friday, June 23, 2017

The May Queen Murders by Sarah Jude - OPTIONAL

Jude, Sarah The May Queen Murders, 288 pages. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016. $17.99. Language: R (53 swears, 4 ‘f’) Mature Content: PG-13 (intense kissing scenes, heavy petting, drinking and frank sexual discussions and encounters. Borderline rated R) Violence: R (for murder and dismemberment) 

Ivy Templeton lives and breathes Rowan’s Glen, the place she grew and her parents did before her. Despite its strange stories and tales of superstition, Ivy is full of love for her home, and for her two favorite people, vivacious cousin Heather and childhood friend Rook. But when Heather starts withdrawing from their relationship and then disappears altogether, Ivy realizes that she must now take her town’s strange stories as gospel, before murder wreaks havoc on all she holds dear.  

The best thing this tale has going for it is how very visceral and atmospheric it always manages to be. Scenes with little actually taking place and shrouded in mystery are tense and nail-biting. I also liked the sweetness of the main character and her love for her family. All her emotions and fears rang true for me and I could understand why she acted in such a haphazard, disjointed way, as her whole world was suddenly upended. However, it just got too graphically bloody for my taste by the end, and the villains were easy to discover before the big reveal. Add on the unnecessary on page sexual exploits of a character I never liked very much, and this book leaves me majorly conflicted on all fronts. Again though, A+ plus for atmosphere. 

HS- OPTIONAL Student Reviewer: Jewels

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