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Books of the Week

This week I've read two books. One is independently published and one is traditionally published, but they relate to each other very well.

Unanswered Verses looks at the darker side of life, the times that we are harassed, the times we fight addictions to substances that are harmful to our bodies, the times that we are weary or in pain.

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware is a plea from the narrator's prison cell to get an attorney to represent her hopeless case. I easily read this book in two days, as I just checked it out from the library on Saturday and finished it on Monday.

The narrator of The Turn of the Key has a big secret that pulls together as the pieces all intersect at the end of the book, but this delightful work will have to be one that you read for yourself.

Each book represented a different poetic style. For Unanswered Verses, the style is simplistic, easily read, and can connect with even the most reluctant poetry reader. However, The Turn of the Key uses more sophisticated language, especially for those of us reading in the United States and is not written as poetry, although Ms. Ware does a great job of including poetic verses in her writing.

Each book had a different connection for me as the reader. Unanswered Verses has a stanza about the voice saying, "write." This connected to me on a personal level, because almost exactly a year ago, I heard the same voice. I heard the voice that said, "Go write. Things will work out." And a year later, they have. However, it isn't quite the way I imagined that it would work out. I still write, but I also found my love for teaching again and get to combine the two while teaching reading to third, fourth, and fifth graders.

The Turn of the Key connected to me in a different way. I was able to read the book with the pure enjoyment of being a reader. I loved the way that the smallest characters played big roles in the outcome and the way that the author intricately wove the antiquated house in with the modern design of a "smart" house.

If you enjoy poetry, written in a simplistic style, you will like Unanswered Verses. If you are more of a novel reader, intrigued by mysteries, and want to know what could possibly be a hopeless criminal case, then you're in for a treat if you read The Turn of the Key.

Brandi Parsons is a freelance writer and proofreader. She published Kidnapped Asylum and Intentional Inboxes in 2019 under her name and two picture books, Squirmy Wormy and Wiggle Piggle under the name Rosa Clark.

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