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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Tuesday - First Chapter - First Paragraph - Search The Shadows



Each Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea shares the first part of a book that she is reading or thinking about reading.  This week I'm sharing the first few paragraphs of Search the Shadows by Barbara Michaels.  In honor of my 'Gothic Reading' quest and also in honor of the fact that I try to reread at least one or two Michaels/Peters books each year, this is one of my favorites.  See what you think:



     Nineteen sixty-five wasn't the worst of years in which to be born, but it certainly wasn't the best.  It was, among other things, the year of Selma and of Watts.  Martin Luther King went to Alabama that year; they met him with tear gas and with dogs.  In Chicago they met him with night sticks.  But the Voting Rights Act became law in 1965.  You have to call that a plus.
     It was the year of the 'Great Society,' which would eliminate poverty in America.  An A-plus idea--if it had only worked.  On a lighter level, the Rolling Stones hit it big with a song called 'I Can't Get No Satisfaction,' and Simon and Garfunkel swept the charts with 'The Sounds of Silence.'  Diet Pepsi was introduced to the lucky American public; and in December, the month of my birth, Mary Quant unveiled the miniskirt.
     On the minus side, there was that little far-off police action in Vietnam.  By the end of 1965, U.S. planes had begun the bombing of the north, and there were over 400,000 American troops fighting, bleeding, and dying in actions that were never called a war.  One of the ones who died was a boy named Kevin Maloney.  For over twenty years I thought he was my father.


Blurb:

Haskell Maloney was cruelly orphaned when she was just a baby.  Now, twenty-two years later, she receives confirmation of the bitter truth she always suspected: the fallen war hero whose name she shares was not her father.  Her quest for answers—and a personal history—brings Haskell to the famed Oriental Institute in Chicago, a city in which her mother lived and thrived before her strange, untimely death.  But by rummaging around in the darkness, Haskell's exposing much more than she bargained for.  And now she's racing against the clock to discover who she really is . . . and why someone is suddenly determined to kill her.

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Barbara Michaels (aka Elizabeth Peters, aka - real name Barbara Mertz) was a graduate of the University of Chicago's  Oriental Institute with a doctorate in Egyptology when she was 23.  This book has all the components of my definition of 'gothic', plus it has some great Chicago info.  I love rereading it!

38 comments:

  1. What a brilliant opening, a great set up and then that devastating last sentence! Great sounding choice Kay and I would definitely like to know more.

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    1. It's a favorite of mine - for a bunch of reasons that aren't in the intro. LOL

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  2. Love the opening and would keep reading. enjoy

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    1. Thanks, Diane, and thank you again for hosting this event each week. I've come to love it!

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  3. Evokes nostalgia and mystery. Plus I love this author. Keep reading!

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    1. Glad to hear of another Michaels/Peters lover!

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  4. I was on a 'Read Elizabeth Peters' mission a couple years ago and then fizzled. I must remedy that and get to her books!

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    1. Oh, you should definitely try a few. She's older style, but I love them.

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  5. That intro hooked me! Great stuff, I'd keep reading.

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  6. The premise doesn't appeal to me and the cover doesn't appeal to me, but I LOVED the intro! So nostalgic! I'd keep reading based on that.

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    1. Wow, Sarah - I'm happy! Well, this book was published in the 80's I think so it's difficult to find a cover that is completely updated.

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  7. :) I haven't read Michaels/Peters in quite some time. This was sounds good.

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    1. I have several of her books that are my particular favorites and so they get read over and over.

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  8. I got totally caught up in the intro and would like to continue on.

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    1. Good! I'm always happy to interest a few of you guys.

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  9. I loved going right back into the 60s. This sounds super-good! I'm putting it on my post-Triple Dog Dare list.

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    1. Yes, that was a pretty good retrospective of the time period wasn't it?

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  10. I love this opening. The author does a great job of setting the story in that specific time and place and makes me wonder why the character no longer thinks Maloney is her father.
    Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a comment.
    Sandy @ TEXAS TWANG

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    1. Well, I could tell you why, but then that would spoil it or part of it anyway. LOL

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  11. Those opening lines were very nostalgic for me, taking me back to moments...The Great Society (yes, oh if only it had worked), Simon & Garfunkel, Diet Pepsi, and the mini-skirt, among others.

    Then there were the dire moments: Vietnam, MLK's death in 1968, etc. This sounds like a book I could immerse myself in...thanks!

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    1. Yes, I thought that was quite a scene setter with all the nostalgia and I'm all about the nostalgia. LOL

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  12. Wow, a blast from the past for me! I would definitely read this one. I've read a couple of Barbara Michaels along the way, and I have Witch by her for my gothic challenge now. I hope you enjoy this reread and I will put this one on my wishlist to scour around for!

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    1. I think you'd like this one, Rita. It is pretty much standard Barbara Michaels.

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  13. I love stories like this! This sounds like a good one, Kay. I like how the author sets up the time period in the opening.

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    1. Yes, she picked a bunch of really vivid descriptions of the 60's didn't she?

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  14. I love going into the 60's! This sounds really good!! I don't know why I have to work!! When all I'd like to do is go read a book. The sun is shinning and it's calling me.

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    1. I know. The grass is always greener.

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  15. Oh, this sounds truly riveting! And it ties in so well with my own choice for this week -- "Why We Can't Wait", by Martn Luther King, Jr.!

    The 60s was a fascinating decade, and this book sounds like great reading! Besides, as Elizabeth Peters, this author has written some very exciting mystery novels set in Egypt. GREAT choice!

    Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting on my own Tuesday Intros post!! :)

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    1. Yes, Michaels/Peters/Mertz (or whichever name you use for her) was a great favorite of mine.

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  16. I love this one! I haven't reread it in ages though and you have me wanting to dig it out again. I loved the genetic issues that came up with this and I remember after reading it I ended up doing a lot of research about Tay-Sachs.

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  17. I used to binge on the Peters-Michaels books - and I can rarely read just one of the Amelia books even now without reaching for another. I haven't read this one in years, and I don't remember much of the story - but you've piqued my interest!

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    1. It's been a while for me too. I like the setting of this book.

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  18. Ah Barbara Michaels... brings back good memories. I really should pick up another of her books.

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    1. I have so many that are favorites.

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  19. Like the opening and the premise!

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Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!