The Year of Cemetery Dance 2018

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Dana Jean

Moderator
Moderator
Apr 11, 2006
51,369
224,682
Thornfield
Those Who Wish Me Dead

by Michael Koryta

About the Book:

"When 13-year-old Jace Wilson witnesses a brutal murder, he's plunged into a new life, issued a false identity and hidden in a wilderness skills program for troubled teens. The plan is to get Jace off the grid while police find the two killers. The result is the start of a nightmare.

The killers, known as the Blackwell Brothers, are slaughtering anyone who gets in their way in a methodical quest to reach him. Now all that remains between them and the boy are Ethan and Allison Serbin, who run the wilderness survival program; Hannah Faber, who occupies a lonely fire lookout tower; and endless miles of desolate Montana mountains.

The clock is ticking, the mountains are burning, and those who wish Jace Wilson dead are no longer far behind."



My Thoughts:

Tomislav Tikulin gives this masterpiece a terrific cover.

Michael Koryta honors us with a damn perfect story. The character development involved here, the plot progression and trip-wire-tight tension --
Those Who Wish Me Dead should be in every writing class ever. I am truly just bowing at the feet of a master storyteller when I praise the skill and beauty in these pages.

My anxiety level was Mach Infinity from the get go and it never decreased. It never let up. The suspense and agitation that Mr. Koryta maintained throughout this story is just beyond perfect. When you thought your chest couldn't possibly get any tighter, he would send that needle to 11! Not once did he falter as we moved through the lives of these people.

As I was reading along, I kept thinking, oh please don't mess this ending up. Because we see it happen time and time again. Great story, things going along so nicely and then screech! crash! carnage! -- a hurried conclusion that rushes every element and leaves the reader pissed off, disappointed and unsatisfied.
But Michael Koryta didn't blow it. Patiently but unrelenting, he escalated the action to full steam ahead.

The ruthless hunters reminded me of Jurassic Park's Velociraptors. They were human Velociraptors with their clever and cold skills. The chapters with them just talking chilled me. They were quietly terrifying and obviously deadly. And I loved them every step of the way. They stayed true to their bad, bad selves.

If you haven't read this, you are missing out on what it means to be a writer. What every writer should aspire to, reach for and unleash on their audience.

This is being made into a movie and I can't wait to see who all is cast. Which female part was Angelina Jolie going to be?

And, I will leave you with this:

If you get lost in the mountains, and barring any electrical storms, go up, not down.
 
Last edited:

Dana Jean

Moderator
Moderator
Apr 11, 2006
51,369
224,682
Thornfield
Those Who Wish Me Dead

by Michael Koryta

About the Book:

"When 13-year-old Jace Wilson witnesses a brutal murder, he's plunged into a new life, issued a false identity and hidden in a wilderness skills program for troubled teens. The plan is to get Jace off the grid while police find the two killers. The result is the start of a nightmare.

The killers, known as the Blackwell Brothers, are slaughtering anyone who gets in their way in a methodical quest to reach him. Now all that remains between them and the boy are Ethan and Allison Serbin, who run the wilderness survival program; Hannah Faber, who occupies a lonely fire lookout tower; and endless miles of desolate Montana mountains.

The clock is ticking, the mountains are burning, and those who wish Jace Wilson dead are no longer far behind."



My Thoughts:

Tomislav Tikulin gives this masterpiece a terrific cover.

Michael Koryta honors us with a damn perfect story. The character development involved here, the plot progression and trip-wire-tight tension --
Those Who Wish Me Dead should be in every writing class ever. I am truly just bowing at the feet of a master storyteller when I praise the skill and beauty in these pages.

My anxiety level was Mach Infinity from the get go and it never decreased. It never let up. The suspense and agitation that Mr. Koryta maintained throughout this story is just beyond perfect. When you thought your chest couldn't possibly get any tighter, he would send that needle to 11! Not once did he falter as we moved through the lives of these people.

As I was reading along, I kept thinking, oh please don't mess this ending up. Because we see it happen time and time again. Great story, things going along so nicely and then screech! crash! carnage! -- a hurried conclusion that rushes every element and leaves the reader pissed off, disappointed and unsatisfied.
But Michael Koryta didn't blow it. Patiently but unrelenting, he escalated the action to full steam ahead.

The ruthless hunters reminded me of Jurassic Park's Velociraptors. They were human Velociraptors with their clever and cold skills. The chapters with them just talking chilled me. They were quietly terrifying and obviously deadly. And I loved them every step of the way. They stayed true to their bad, bad selves.

If you haven't read this, you are missing out on what it means to be a writer. What every writer should aspire to, reach for and unleash on their audience.

This is being made into a movie and I can't wait to see who all is cast. Which female part was Angelina Jolie going to be?

And, I will leave you with this:

If you get lost in the mountains, and barring any electrical storms, go up, not down.
And just wanted to add: (And this is a huge spoiler. Huge. It will ruin the book for you if you haven't read it. So don't read my blabbings.)

Mr. Koryta had a Velociraptor moment too. I had a bead on him, and he snuck up behind me.

Not for one minute did I suspect Jamie until the hospital scene. It did go through my mind early on, Why isn't there more boots on the ground? Ethan was promised back-up if things went t*t's up. And it wasn't there. I suspected there was an anonymous inside player, but I didn't immediately jump to Jamie.

But, that changed during Jamie's visit to Allison in the hospital. I had this a-ha thought, "holy hell, she's involved!" I felt it so strongly. Everything about that scene was screaming at me....UNTIL SHE SAID, "He's my son." Then my guard let down and I thought, okay, so that's why I was getting such a weird vibe about this person. I totally bought it. I walked my little fly legs right into Mr. Koryta's web. Right up to the minute he gave us the reveal I believed Jamie was wearing a white hat.

Touché.
 
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Spideyman

Uber Member
Jul 10, 2006
45,050
185,168
75
Just north of Duma Key
And just wanted to add: (And this is a huge spoiler. Huge. It will ruin the book for you if you haven't read it. So don't read my blabbings.)

Mr. Koryta had a Velociraptor moment too. I had a bead on him, and he snuck up behind me.

Not for one minute did I suspect Jamie until the hospital scene. It did go through my mind early on, Why isn't there more boots on the ground? Ethan was promised back-up if things went t*t's up. And it wasn't there. I suspected there was an anonymous inside player, but I didn't immediately jump to Jamie.

But, that changed during Jamie's visit to Allison in the hospital. I immediately thought, "holy hell, she's involved!" I felt it so strongly. Everything about that scene was screaming at me....UNTIL SHE SAID, "He's my son." Then my guard let down and I thought, okay, so that's why I was getting such a weird vibe about this person. I totally bought it. I walked my little fly legs right into Mr. Koryta's web. Right up to the minute he gave us the reveal I believed Jamie was wearing a white hat.

Touché.
Felt exactly as you did re the "spoiler".
My one other concern
When the horse ran off, was he going to survive.
 

Doc Creed

Well-Known Member
Nov 18, 2015
17,019
81,389
42
United States
Those Who Wish Me Dead

by Michael Koryta

About the Book:

"When 13-year-old Jace Wilson witnesses a brutal murder, he's plunged into a new life, issued a false identity and hidden in a wilderness skills program for troubled teens. The plan is to get Jace off the grid while police find the two killers. The result is the start of a nightmare.

The killers, known as the Blackwell Brothers, are slaughtering anyone who gets in their way in a methodical quest to reach him. Now all that remains between them and the boy are Ethan and Allison Serbin, who run the wilderness survival program; Hannah Faber, who occupies a lonely fire lookout tower; and endless miles of desolate Montana mountains.

The clock is ticking, the mountains are burning, and those who wish Jace Wilson dead are no longer far behind."



My Thoughts:

Tomislav Tikulin gives this masterpiece a terrific cover.

Michael Koryta honors us with a damn perfect story. The character development involved here, the plot progression and trip-wire-tight tension --
Those Who Wish Me Dead should be in every writing class ever. I am truly just bowing at the feet of a master storyteller when I praise the skill and beauty in these pages.

My anxiety level was Mach Infinity from the get go and it never decreased. It never let up. The suspense and agitation that Mr. Koryta maintained throughout this story is just beyond perfect. When you thought your chest couldn't possibly get any tighter, he would send that needle to 11! Not once did he falter as we moved through the lives of these people.

As I was reading along, I kept thinking, oh please don't mess this ending up. Because we see it happen time and time again. Great story, things going along so nicely and then screech! crash! carnage! -- a hurried conclusion that rushes every element and leaves the reader pissed off, disappointed and unsatisfied.
But Michael Koryta didn't blow it. Patiently but unrelenting, he escalated the action to full steam ahead.

The ruthless hunters reminded me of Jurassic Park's Velociraptors. They were human Velociraptors with their clever and cold skills. The chapters with them just talking chilled me. They were quietly terrifying and obviously deadly. And I loved them every step of the way. They stayed true to their bad, bad selves.

If you haven't read this, you are missing out on what it means to be a writer. What every writer should aspire to, reach for and unleash on their audience.

This is being made into a movie and I can't wait to see who all is cast. Which female part was Angelina Jolie going to be?

And, I will leave you with this:

If you get lost in the mountains, and barring any electrical storms, go up, not down.
You and Spidey have sold me on this one. I think Flow Joe was praising this book, too. I don't read many mysteries and thrillers anymore. I hope to change that by finding a copy of this book. Excellent review, as always.
 

Dana Jean

Moderator
Moderator
Apr 11, 2006
51,369
224,682
Thornfield
PURE

By Julianna Baggott

About the Book:

"We know you are here, our brothers and sisters...

Pressia barely remembers the Detonations or much about life during the Before. In her sleeping cabinet behind the rubble of an old barbershop where she lives with her grandfather, she thinks about what is lost—how the world went from amusement parks, movie theaters, birthday parties, fathers and mothers . . . to ash and dust, scars, permanent burns, and fused, damaged bodies. And now, at an age when everyone is required to turn themselves over to the militia to either be trained as a soldier or, if they are too damaged and weak, to be used as live targets, Pressia can no longer pretend to be small. Pressia is on the run.

There are those who escaped the apocalypse unmarked. Pures. They are tucked safely inside the Dome that protects their healthy, superior bodies. Yet Partridge, whose father is one of the most influential men in the Dome, feels isolated and lonely. Different. He thinks about loss—maybe just because his family is broken; his father is emotionally distant; his brother killed himself; and his mother never made it inside their shelter. Or maybe it's his claustrophobia: his feeling that this Dome has become a swaddling of intensely rigid order. So when a slipped phrase suggests his mother might still be alive, Partridge risks his life to leave the Dome to find her.

When Pressia meets Partridge, their worlds shatter all over again."





My Thoughts:

Tomislav Tikulin gives us the cover for this book that sums up the struggle within.

I have had this book a long time and I'm disappointed that it took me this long to read it. Strong plot. Engaging characters. This is a story of dropped bombs and dystopian tropes. The Pures -- chosen and safe in a Dome City; and the Wretches -- what's left of humanity after the Detonations.

The people who were trapped outside the dome when the bomb dropped were fused to things that they were near. One of my favorite lines in the book is talking about "the boy with the birds in his back." Fascinating visuals of mutations and alterations to the survivors. The struggles and the remembrances. I have to admit, I was weepy here and there.

And apparently this is a damn trilogy! Fuse and Burn continue this story, and I must have them. I must. Are they out there in the wild or did I miss my chance to read these? Were these only offered by Cemetery Dance and are now out of print? I hope they had a wider release because I will be looking.

She also recommends further reading on the subject of Nagasaki and Hiroshima and the injuries suffered by these people. Were things fused to these victim's bodies? Made a part of them? I'll be adding that to my TBR pile also.

Very good writing.
 
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Moderator

Ms. Mod
Administrator
Jul 10, 2006
50,508
144,611
Maine
PURE

By Julianna Baggott

About the Book:

"We know you are here, our brothers and sisters...

Pressia barely remembers the Detonations or much about life during the Before. In her sleeping cabinet behind the rubble of an old barbershop where she lives with her grandfather, she thinks about what is lost—how the world went from amusement parks, movie theaters, birthday parties, fathers and mothers . . . to ash and dust, scars, permanent burns, and fused, damaged bodies. And now, at an age when everyone is required to turn themselves over to the militia to either be trained as a soldier or, if they are too damaged and weak, to be used as live targets, Pressia can no longer pretend to be small. Pressia is on the run.

There are those who escaped the apocalypse unmarked. Pures. They are tucked safely inside the Dome that protects their healthy, superior bodies. Yet Partridge, whose father is one of the most influential men in the Dome, feels isolated and lonely. Different. He thinks about loss—maybe just because his family is broken; his father is emotionally distant; his brother killed himself; and his mother never made it inside their shelter. Or maybe it's his claustrophobia: his feeling that this Dome has become a swaddling of intensely rigid order. So when a slipped phrase suggests his mother might still be alive, Partridge risks his life to leave the Dome to find her.

When Pressia meets Partridge, their worlds shatter all over again."





My Thoughts:

Tomislav Tikulin gives us the cover for this book that sums up the struggle within.

I have had this book a long time and I'm disappointed that it took me this long to read it. Strong plot. Engaging characters. This is a story of dropped bombs and dystopian tropes. The Pures -- chosen and safe in a Dome City; and the Wretches -- what's left of humanity after the Detonations. The people who were trapped outside the dome when the bomb dropped were fused to things that they were near. One of my favorite lines in the book is talking about "the boy with the birds in his back." Fascinating visuals of mutations and alterations to the survivors. The struggles and the remembrances. I have to admit, I was weepy here and there.

And apparently this is a damn trilogy! Fuse and Burn continue this story, and I must have them. I must. Are they out there in the wild or did I miss my chance to read these? Were these only offered by Cemetery Dance and are now out of print? I hope they had a wider release because I will be looking.

Very good writing.
Amazon still sells them.
 

preciousroy

Well-Known Member
Apr 4, 2018
174
651
Season 2
In episode 3 (I think) there is a shot showing the reflection of Joy in a window, X'd out by wood strips over the pane. I can never see reflections in film as simply that. I always assume them to be a symbolic representation of a fractured mind, a two-faced person or identity dissociation. This shot came around the time Joy started to question her life as her mother had always explained it to her. It could have represented an irreversible departure from who Joy knew herself to be. But I also believe it could mean Joy will die by the conclusion of the season.
 
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preciousroy

Well-Known Member
Apr 4, 2018
174
651
Maybe it can be said for most stories but the recurring theme I'm noticing this season is that the decisions others make which are unrelated to you can still have horrible consequences in your life. It's terrible to think about.
 

preciousroy

Well-Known Member
Apr 4, 2018
174
651
I'm also wondering if Joy isn't our Annie, as in maybe she's going to have a break. I believe Annie's mental illness comes from her father, despite her mother's odd behavior. Annie's mother seemed to be changed by her experiences in life, but not mentally ill. Tightly wound, perhaps but not mentally ill. But we do know that Annie's father is avoiding a lithium prescription.

Lithium is one of the drugs Annie takes, too as part of her self-medication cocktail. Annie and Joy share the same father, and so they might both suffer from the same issues as he did. Some mental ilnesses don't begin to manifest in people until they reach their late teens. Joy is sixteen, just a step away from her late teenage years.

We've also seen Joy restrain Annie by tieing her to a bed much like we saw Annie restrain Paul Sheldon (in Misery.) We've also seen Joy being quite adept at plunging the emergency syringe into the arms of Annie and Rita, making them docile and knocking them out.

All of Annie's violence has come in moments of snapping. She's learned to lie to cover her tracks but she was never in full control of herself in any of the scenes where she hurt people. She was having an episode triggered by some sort of external information when she killed her father and Ace, when she attacked Rita and when she almost drowned Joy.

Joy, however is calm in tense moments and maintains control over herself and the situation. She subdues her target without violence. When Joy violates Annie's agency, she believes it's for her own good. The line gets blurred when she drugs Rita to protect Annie. She was no longer protecting Annie from herself. Joy was making the decision for herself to protect Annie from Rita. The goal being de-escalation, I don't think she meant any harm to Rita. But the decision was self-motivated instead of being made to protect a disturbed person who may be a danger to herself. It wasn't motivated by evil but she's crossed a line from using the syringe as emergency medicine to using it as a tool. A means to an end.

Annie uses the same kind of language we expect from her, "dirtybird" etc. But we've seen that she picked that up from her mother. It's not hard to believe Joy could pick it up from Annie somewhere along the way. Plus, Joy just kind of looks more like our Annie.
 

Hill lover35

Well-Known Member
Jan 8, 2017
3,528
18,795
38
Alberta canada
I was thinking the same thing. I am enjoying this season but I am a bit lost when it comes to the ace Merrill and Salem’s lot story line, but I missed two episodes
Season 2
In episode 3 (I think) there is a shot showing the reflection of Joy in a window, X'd out by wood strips over the pane. I can never see reflections in film as simply that. I always assume them to be a symbolic representation of a fractured mind, a two-faced person or identity dissociation. This shot came around the time Joy started to question her life as her mother had always explained it to her. It could have represented an irreversible departure from who Joy knew herself to be. But I also believe it could mean Joy will die by the conclusion of the season.
 

Hill lover35

Well-Known Member
Jan 8, 2017
3,528
18,795
38
Alberta canada
I think you are on to something, the #1 fan thing was interesting..

I am getting confused with the zombie re-born things. Can some one explain this. I also have not seen or read Salem’s lot or anything. And is ace really dead..
 
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preciousroy

Well-Known Member
Apr 4, 2018
174
651
I read Salem's Lot while falling asleep at night and missed half of the book so I can't really say. I'm going to have to re-read it again eventually.
I would assume Ace is dead but we were also led to believe Rita was dead for a minute. When his corpse fell through the ground with Annie it was exposed to that slime. The scarab beetle accompanies the slime so we know they're connected. Thanks to pop culture, the first thing that would pop into most people's minds would be Egypt.

The conversation turned-Ace has with is turned-brother gives a clue that they may be ancient parasites. They talk as if they've just returned after a very long time. They enjoy wine, especially. Wine will be a clue as to who's been turned, I bet.

Did you also catch the line about why the one human didn't turn right away? The one who made it to the hospital for a brief moment before she was recovered by the parasites. They said she didn't turn because of her depression meds. They've chosen Annie for their vessel and she's on the 40-20-10 cocktail.

Not sure it means anything, but did you notice those numbers are halved in descending order? Is this symbolic of Annie's inevitable severing from Joy? Nadia and Abdi were each severed from their mother. Their relationship to each other has become severed now that Nadia has learned what Abdi already knew. Even Ace and his brother felt resentment towards their father initially, jealous of how he treated the orphans. Evangeline was taken from Joy. Annie stole joy. Annie's mother felt like Annie's father had stolen something from her in her youth.

I looked up who Amity Lambert may have been and the only Stephen King link that was returned was the Dark Tower wiki page on Calla Amity.
 

Dana Jean

Moderator
Moderator
Apr 11, 2006
51,369
224,682
Thornfield
I am very disappointed. I usually purchase a grab bag for myself to put under my tree. There wasn't one to purchase this year that was promised this year.

Although I do have a grab bag order that I purchased 2 years ago. It was supposed to be delivered last year and then the company had all this trouble with their press. So, I was holding out hope that maybe I would get it this year. It's looking bleak.

Nothing to open this year. :near_tears: Don't be sad for me. I'm waiting for my new king sized bed to be delivered, so that will be my present. It's kind of not the same as my books, though.
 

preciousroy

Well-Known Member
Apr 4, 2018
174
651
Is the angel Flagg? He fits the description of "man in black" in that long robe of his. Pop said he's able to move between the when's and where's at will.

This post was accidentally moved. Please check in the castle rock talk thread for a repost. Sorry.
 
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