02 July 2019

Today's Read: Unravelling by Karen Lord

review of Unravelling by Karen LordCould you keep your wits about you if you suddenly found yourself swirled out of time with a killer on the loose and your own life on the line? Fortunately, forensic psychologist Miranda Ecouvo is not without friends, but can the trio solve the mystery before their nemesis finds the key to immortality? Here's how the book opens:

A chorus of tree frogs trilled in the damp, velvet darkness, wide awake and relentless as they spoke their authority over the nocturnal world. The village of Makendha slowly marked the hours to midnight with a quieting of laughter and argument, a dimming and darkening, a staccato punctuation of ending sound—the shutting of doors, the dropping of shoes, and the weighty hush of a house empty of talk but filled with dreaming.
Unravelling by Karen Lord (Penguin Books, June 18, p. 1)

Quick Facts
  • Setting: An unreal world
  • Circumstances: This is a hard one to summarize, but I'm going to give it a go. Miranda thinks she's put a serial killer behind bars, but one night, after a close call with what could have been a fatal accident, she's transported to another realm. There she discovers that the murders she's helped solved are more complex than she realized. She also meets two brothers, who help her navigate a world infused in Caribbean and African myth and folklore. There are puzzles to solve, gods to appease, prophecies to decipher, and a labyrinth to conquer if the allies hope to stop the killer and save their own lives. 
  • Genre & themes: part mystery, part fantasy, part folk lore retelling; there appears be a strong thread involving the nature of memory
  • Why I want to read it: I said yes when pitched this novel because I was focusing on the murder mystery, time travel, and myth/folklore aspects. Some reviews seem to imply that there may be a horror element; if so, I'll likely stop reading when I get to that point. The premise of the book reminds me of an adult version of the Rick Riordan books based on a variety of traditional myths (including Norse, Greek, Roman, South Asian).
  • Extra things to know: This is a standalone novel, but it is set in a world that Lord has already created. Reviewers have mixed opinions about whether it's better to have read the other books or not. Based on Goodreads and some other sources, the book is hovering between 3 and 4 stars.
  • Acknowledgments: Thanks to Daw Books for a finished copy of Unravelling by Karen Lord.


rhapsodyinbooks 7/2/19, 6:39 AM  

I love the cover, which of course matters to people who pick books in part on that basis!

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea 7/2/19, 8:04 AM  

This is a new one for me. I do like the writing and cover so I might read a bit more.

Here's my pick:https://bibliophilebythesea.blogspot.com/2019/07/first-chapter-first-paragraph-tuesday.html

bermudaonion 7/2/19, 8:11 AM  

My sister might like this one but I don't think it's for me.

Vicki 7/2/19, 8:38 AM  

I don't think it's for me but I do love the cover.

JoAnn 7/2/19, 9:21 AM  

I don't usually go for this type of novel, but I do like the writing...

Girl Who Reads 7/2/19, 4:44 PM  

The opening is quite descriptive. The premise reminds me a bit of The Gone World by Tom Sweterlitsch. Let me know if it veers into horror because that would be a pass for me as well.

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