2015 Book #30 – Find Me by Laura van den Berg


Title: Find Me
Author: Laura van den Berg
Date finished: 4/11/15
Genre: Not quite sure. Fiction. Apocalyptic. Psychological. This one’s hard to label.
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication Date: February 17, 2015
Pages in book: 270
Stand alone or series: Stand alone

Blurb from the cover:

After two acclaimed story collections, Laura van den Berg brings us Find Me, her highly anticipated debut novel–a gripping, imaginative, darkly funny tale of a young woman struggling to find her place in the world.
Joy has no one. She spends her days working the graveyard shift at a grocery store outside Boston and nursing an addiction to cough syrup, an attempt to suppress her troubled past. But when a sickness that begins with memory loss and ends with death sweeps the country, Joy, for the first time in her life, seems to have an advantage: she is immune. When Joy’s immunity gains her admittance to a hospital in rural Kansas, she sees a chance to escape her bleak existence. There she submits to peculiar treatments and follows seemingly arbitrary rules, forming cautious bonds with other patients–including her roommate, whom she turns to in the night for comfort, and twin boys who are digging a secret tunnel.
As winter descends, the hospital’s fragile order breaks down and Joy breaks free, embarking on a journey from Kansas to Florida, where she believes she can find her birth mother, the woman who abandoned her as a child. On the road in a devastated America, she encounters mysterious companions, cities turned strange, and one very eerie house. As Joy closes in on Florida, she must confront her own damaged memory and the secrets she has been keeping from herself.

My rating: 3.5 stars out of a scale of 5
My review: This book will count for the challenge I am participating in for April, the #ReadingMyLibrary reading challenge. I saw this book at the Terryville Library and I had seen it in one of the recent Book Page publications I think so I thought I would try it. This book was interesting from the start, with a description of an epidemic that has swept the nation, wiping out much of the population in its path. Silver blisters begin appearing on a person’s skin and then their memory starts to go, to the point where they forget what a job or a house or a hand is. Their mind gets eaten away until the person can no longer function and they end up dying. This disease is spread through any kind of human contact, but mysteriously certain people who come into contact with it don’t succumb to the sickness. Joy is one of these lucky few. She came into contact early on in the epidemic but never came down with any symptoms.
Its because of this that she ends up at the Hospital, where Dr. Bek is studying various individuals to try and discover a cure to the sickness. Due to a strange series of events, Joy ends up escaping from the hospital to try and find her mother who abandoned her when she was only a month old. Joy is only about 20 years old by the time she leaves the Hospital but she’s already seen a lot of tragedy and hardship in life.
A lot of weird $h!t happens in this book. The story line was so extremely interesting and the idea behind the book was really thought provoking. After the epidemic ends many survivors end up killing themselves, some out of anger that they survived when their families didn’t and some because they just can’t manage to live in the America that’s developed as a result of the epidemic. The after effects seem to come in waves, the tragedy creating a ripple effect throughout the nation. Other weird stuff happens too. I don’t want to give away too much of the book so I can’t describe all the weird stuff that happens. This book was really interesting, but I have to be honest its not my usual kind of book. It was dark and heavy and weird and thought-provoking and interesting and weird all rolled into one big ball of interesting weird.

The bottom line: Very very interesting, a little dark though. Not exactly my style but I would recommend it.

Link to author website
Link to Amazon

#ReadingMyLibrary Challenge – Weekly Update #2 April 11th


Well another week has somehow slipped by. I am anxiously looking forward to the coming week since tax season is over in 4 more days and I will finally have more time for reading! I also have some fun vacations planned in the next couple months that I’m looking forward to. So anyways, I was able to get through 4 books this past week for the reading challenge: The Vintner’s Daughter, Cure for the Common BreakupYou’re So Fine, and Find Me (I finished it this morning so I will have the post up later today). The first 3 books I took out from the Bristol Public Library, and Find Me I borrowed from the Terryville Public Library.


So as part of the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge, there are optional weekly update posts. The topic for this week’s post is: Books you would like to suggest to your library. There have been a number of series and various books over the years that weren’t at my library that I wanted to read. That’s the great thing about CT libraries though, if my library doesn’t have a certain book I can look it up online and find out if another library in CT has it. I can then request that book and it is sent from the other library to my home library for me to borrow! Because of that, there haven’t been too many books over the years that I wasn’t able to find at the library. And for the handful of books that weren’t at any libraries that I could find, I would go to Barnes & Noble and buy the book and then donate it to my library once I finished it! Great system I think.

That being said, my home library usually ends up having the majority of the books that I’m looking for. Partly because I have similar reading interests to some of the librarians and also because they try to order things that they know the patrons will take out (even sometimes specifically me!). So with that in mind, below are a few of the books/series that I have looked for at my home library over the years and have been surprised that they didn’t have as well as a few I’d like to read from my TBR list that they don’t have:

1. The Fairy Tale series by Eloisa James


I thought that this was a really popular series and I was a little surprised that my library didn’t have the series! Especially since there are a lot of romance readers at my library.

2. The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter


This looks like a good teen series and those tend to be popular at my library.

3. The Great Beanie Baby Bubble by Zac Bissonnette


BEANIE BABIES WERE AWESOME! Every library should have this book, its so relevant to real life.

4. The Pocket Wife by Susan Crawford


To be honest I think my library might have gotten this book in the last couple days but I haven’t seen it there yet. This looks like a great book!