The Missing Years by Lexie Elliott

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Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

This was a eerie story, told from the view of Ailsa Calder.  Ailsa has just inherited a house after her mother passes away, one that she hasn’t been back to for several years.

Once arriving, her plan is to sell the house and be back to her boyfriend in a timely manner, only to find out that she is the inherit of only half of the house.  The other half belongs to her father, who mysteriously disappeared without a trace 27 years ago.

Returning to her childhood home, she is also joined by her half sister whom she hasn’t really spent time with since Ailsa left for college.  Even with her sister there with her in the house, which has a name….The Manse….Ailsa cannot shake the odd feeling bubbling up inside.   It’s almost as if the house itself is watching her.  It also doesn’t help when other odd events start to happen, such as the fact that no animals will set foot in the gates of The Manse.

Ailsa soon meets her neighbors and a few other locals, whose parents were also friends with her father and mother.  Stories begin to emerge from the past that make Ailsa think she shouldn’t have come back at all.  Ailsa starts to realize that the house is trying to tell her something….something about her father.

I thought this was a great story that kept me turning the pages, wanting to find out what was going to happen next!  There were some elements of the story that I wish the author would have gave more light upon a tad more, such as the reasoning told of the house’s history as well as the part about ‘time’.  I won’t say anymore as it will give too much away!  Still a great book for anyone who loves a good eerie mystery!

Readers be prepared, The Manse has been waiting for Ailsa to arrive after all these years and it’s ready to show her the truth, even if it costs Ailsa everything.

 

*Giveaway on Goodreads* 

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/291355-the-missing-years

Expected publication: April 23rd 2019 

 

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The Dinosaur Artist: Obsession, Betrayal, and the Quest for Earth’s Ultimate Trophy by Paige Williams

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Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

This was a very interesting story!  Paige Williams tells the story of a man named Eric Prokopi and the dinosaur bones he sells, especially the bones of a Tarbosaurus or T. Bataar for short.

A T. Bataar is a very, very close cousin to the well known Tyrannosaurus, but T. Bataar skeletons are only found in Asia where they flourished about 70 million years ago.  Most bones of the T. Bataar have been found in Mongolia….and here is where the problem lies and a story appears…….

In 2012, a New York auction said they had a “superb Tyrannosaurus skeleton” for sale.  It was actually a ‘nearly’ complete T. Bataar, unearthed in Mongolia.  As the fossils sat on display, the winning bid was for over $1 million dollars and the man behind the bones – a 38 year old named Eric Prokopi.

Eric, a onetime swimmer who spent his teenage years diving for shark teeth, Prokopi’s singular obsession with fossils fueled a thriving business hunting, preparing, and selling specimens, to clients ranging from natural history museums to avid private collectors like actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

But there was a problem.  As the T. Bataar went to auction, a network of paleontologists alerted the government of Mongolia and an international custody began……..

I highly recommend this book!  Such an interesting story and history of the dinosaur trade, something we don’t really think about on a daily basis!

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The Night Visitors by Carol Goodman

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Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

I really enjoy Carol Goodman’s writing!  The first book I read of her’s was fantastic, you can check out my review for that book by clicking here “River Road”.  Her style of writing is easy to follow and her stories keep you turning the pages and not wanting to put the book down!

In her newest release, “The Night Visitors”, we are introduced to Mattie.  Mattie is a social worker who lives by her self in her family’s home that is nestled in the woods.  One night she gets a phone call that a woman and child are arriving on a bus soon and they need her assistance.   Mattie doesn’t think much of the situation as she is always eager to help whenever she can and heads to the bus stop.  She is especially eager to help cases like these, victims of domestic violence.

Soon arrives Alice and Oren on the bus.  Mattie had planned to take them to a nearby safe house, but when they arrive she can’t seem to bring it to herself to take them there.  The boy, Oren reminds her of her own little brother who died when he was almost the same age as Oren is now.  Although Mattie is somewhat breaking their code of conduct and rules by offering them to stay at her own house, Alice and Oren also have a secret…….There’s a snow storm on the horizon as everyone gets settled in at Mattie’s house and soon another kind of storm is about to unleash, one that may be deadly…….

There are several twists and turns in the story that will keep you glued to these pages.  I look forward to reading more from Carol Goodman!  I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for a thriller/mystery.  Carol’s stories get right into the excitement and mystery right away and I love that!  The only reason I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars is, I wish it was a tad longer or a few parts a little more dwelled upon, but it was still an excellent story!

 

 

In Search of the Canary Tree: The Story of a Scientist, a Cypress, and a Changing World by Lauren E. Oakes

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Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

This was an interesting book about a Scientist who has a little bit different view on the changing of the climate.   Lauren Oakes spent years studying one tree species and this is her adventure and the conclusion she came to along the way!

At one point, Lauren ended up in Alaska to hunt for the dying tree species called the yellow cedar.  In some places she discovered that with the changing weather, these trees were dying off and not growing back at all.  She interviews locals who uses these trees to make a living.  It was interesting to hear why these locals thought the tree population was declining, some said logging and some said climate change.

Now, I know there is a lot speculation and negative talk about climate change, which is why I really liked this book.  Lauren actually discovers that there is a resiliency of forgotten forest, some that are flourishing in the wake of the changing temperatures.  Some plants are thriving and growing in this circle of life and the people around them are creating new relationships with the emerging environment.

So yes this is in part a story about how climate change is effecting the plant life, but it’s also a lesson in resilience of plants, people and the natural world.

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