Books are cheaper than heroin, but they DO add up....

Amy, Carrie, Chanin and Sarah buy (and read and review) their own stuff. They've been known to shop around from dealer to dealer looking for the best price. If you're interested in slipping them something to try out, just contact us.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Spencerville by Nelson DeMille

Has anyone seen this phone?
My poor neighbor, Tami.   Her phone was stolen yesterday.  When she is out and about today doing all of the things that us awesome moms do, she will be without her phone.  How will she find out if Jason Varitek shows up to training camp?  What if there is a last minute Hanna Andersson coupon emailed to her?  To make matters worse, she won't be able to read this post and bask in the glory that she once again recommended a winner.  Sadly, she'll have to wait until she is home tonight and the kids are in bed to pull this up on her home computer.  Maybe by then the culprits will have returned the phone.  Or maybe not...

Either way, Tami gets the "cool neighbor" award for turning me on to  Spencerville.  I believe the interaction went something like this:

*Knock on my 1950's Army-issue brown screen door
Me:  Come in.
Tami:  Hey.  Have you read the book Spencerville?
Me:  No, should I?
Tami:  Ya. (heavy Boston accent way of saying yeah) You totally should. I don't know if it's good or not, but you should read it and tell me if I should read it.
Me: Cool, thanks.
Tami:  So, are we having a firepit tonight?
Me:  Yes.  How much wine do you have?

Let's just say that we like our books here on this street, but we like our wine just as much.  And our coffee, too.  But that's another story.  

The cover looks spooky, but the book is not.  At all.
Now, on to the review.  I knew I was going to like Spencerville from the start.  The main character Keith Landry is an ex-military type that has recently retired and moved back to his hometown. He is fixing up his boyhood home while his parents are soaking up the rays in Florida, and not much has changed since he left 25 years before.  Oh, except his ex-girlfriend and first true love is now married to his arch nemesis who just so happens to be the town sheriff.  Spencerville has some police action, some small town drama, a military man and some romance.  What's not to like? 

So, what specifically was the draw for me?  The characters.  Keith has just retired after a full military career.  After Vietnam he served the government in a more "covert" capacity until his 20 years were up.  Now that he is officially a civilian, Keith isn't really sure what he wants to do and finds himself in Spencerville.  I think he knew all along he would end up there, if for nothing else to see Annie one last time.  I will admit, I loved that part about him.  He never stopped loving her and it was her letters that got him through some of the roughest parts of his tours in Vietnam.  So, to recap:  Keith dutifully served his country for 20 years and never stopped loving his first girlfriend.  Can we just clone him, please? 

And then there is Annie.  Not wanting to hold Keith back from his career aspirations of serving his country she stepped back and they drifted apart.  She eventually married Cliff (the bully of a town sheriff) and they had two children.  By the time Keith returns the children are off to college and Annie is stuck in a now increasingly abusive marriage.  As the wife of the possessive town sheriff she has no freedom and has literally become a prisoner in her hometown.  At first I was annoyed with Annie because I wanted her to stand up for herself and GET.OUT. (Truth be told, I really wanted her to not have let Keith go to war without being her husband, but that is just the Army wife in me getting in the way).   But the poor girl just didn't know how.  Right when she is on the cusp of figuring things out, Keith shows up and it is like the stars align and kitty cats are dancing on rainbows.  Yes, that's right.  Kitty cats on rainbows.  I'll spare you the picture.  You're welcome.

But it couldn't be that simple and by the amount of pages I had left in the book, I knew it wasn't going to be that simple.  The last 150 pages or so were intense and a bit gruesome.  I had the feeling of dread and doom the whole time and just wanted it to be over. But, I couldn't put the book down even though I wanted to put it down just in case something bad was going to ruin their happy ending.  Does that make sense? I wanted Keith and Annie together and back to doing what they do best; loving each other.  I wanted Cliff gone and not in a police uniform anymore. I wanted peace for Spencerville.  I wanted the happy ending!

Did I get the happy ending?  I'm not telling.  You'll have to read it for yourself to find out. You'll also have to check here to see if Tami gets her phone back.  That is a happy ending I hope I do get to tell. Pin It


  1. O.K. I love happy ending also. Should I read this book? I hope so. Another one on my list. Thanks for the great review. Also, I hope Tami gets her phone back.

    1. She got her phone back. Stupid 5th graders. I think you would like it. It a happy-ish ending. How's that?

  2. This sounds like a good book for me also. I'll add it and hope I get to it quickly. I'm currently engrossed in the Jefferson Allegiance, which I am totally enjoying! Thanks for another suggestion for my book list! Good luck to Tami.

  3. Oops! That last comment is from Aunt Barb. Sorry!