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Month in review

Reviews
Across the Continent by The Lincoln Highway by Effie Price Gladding
The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights by John Steinbeck
Arsène Lupin, Gentleman-Thief by Maurice Leblanc
Baby Driver: A Story About Myself by Jan Kerouac
Blackwork by Monica Ferris
Bone Gap by Laura Ruby
Buttons and Bones by Monica Ferris
Cocaine Blues by Kerry Greenwood
The Colossus of Roads: Myth and Symbol Along the American Highway by Karal Ann Marling
Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant by Tony Cliff
Far from Fair by Elana K. Arnold
Footer Davis Probably Is Crazy by Susan Vaught
The Friendship Riddle by Megan Frazer Blakemore
The Inn Between by Marina Cohen
The Isle by Jordana Frankel Jem and The Holograms 1 by Kelly Thompson
Kissing in America by Margo Rabb
The Land of Forgotten Girls by Erin Entrada Kelly
The Missing Ink by Karen E. Olson
Monkey Beach by Eden Robinson
The Nameless City by Faith Erin Hicks
No Ghouls Allowed by Victoria Laurie
Painting with a Lens by Rod Deutschmann and Robin Deutschmann
Photography of Natural Things by Freeman Patterson
Splat and the Cool School Trip by Rob Scotton
Survival Strategies of the Almost Brave by Jen White
Twenty Yawns by Jane Smiley
Umbrella by Taro Yashima The Underwater Welder by Jeff Lemire
The Ward by Jordana Frankel
The Woman-Haters by Joseph C. Lincoln

Miscellaneous
My life as a teenage book addict, or, Sarah becomes a reader
Playing Pokémon Go as a parent
The terrible previews before Ghostbusters

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



The Underwater Welder: 07/15/16

The Underwater Welder by Jeff Lemire

The Underwater Welder by Jeff Lemire is a graphic novel horror story of the Twilight Zone variety. Jack Joseph is happiest when he's underwater, working as a welder. The land, a remote village in Nova Scotia holds too many troubling memories, and the worry that he'll repeat the same mistakes as his father.

The back story of Jack and his father is revealed in scenes that are hard to distinguish as flash backs or as time travel. All of them center on a pocket watch Jack finds as he's working his last job before taking time off for paternity leave.

The pocket watch forces Jack to relive and remember the last time he saw his father. His father's fate relates directly to Jack's fears that he will abandon his wife and child in the same way.

Road signs in the abandoned town.

Although the book is set in a remote village and off shore this graphic novel through the geography of the village fits beautifully into the "road not taken" type of road narrative. Jack is imprisoned by circumstances (emotional, paranormal, and physical) in his town. Leaving is not an option and when he does try to literally run away, he is prevented by the main street looping in on itself (just as it does in Pleasantville (1998).

The only way to personal freedom is to face the fears head on. In Bone Gap, Finn's option is to cross through the cornfield. For Jack, it means diving, which is about as off road as you can possibly go.

Five stars

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