Review by Anissa Telle
The 50Plus Book of the Month for September:
(Chosen by Andrea Peskind Katz from Great Thoughts, Great Readers is:
The Night of Many Endings: A Novel by Melissa Payne
The Night of Many Endings by Melissa Payne is a character-driven book told in alternating voices about the far-reaching effects of one weather disaster. Five strangers with vastly different circumstances end up trapped in a library as a blizzard rages on. What happens inside those walls will at times bring you to tears, laughter, or pure fear as you delve into their past.
The characters in The Night of Many Endings
All characters radiate around Nora, the brave librarian who devoted her life to rescuing others because the one person she can’t save, her brother, is lost to her. Through her tenure as the librarian in Silver Ridge, Nora collected quite a variety of acquaintances. We meet Vlado, the security group more interested in reading and helping others than patrolling. Then there’s Jasmine, the teenage girl being raised by her grandmother. We also meet Marlene, the crotchety old woman with a sharp tongue masking a tragedy. Finally, there’s Lewis, the homeless man with demons and secrets causing him to turn to drugs instead of his family.
As you can infer, these strangers do not have much in common, but their basic goodness bonds them as they fight for survival. They all have their own secrets and reveal others as they learn to trust each other. Only when they share these confidences can true healing begin. This night in the library becomes the impetus for change for all involved.
Not all is as it seems
You will find yourself cheering each of them on in their new journey, but no spoilers are provided here. Not all is as it seems, and Payne keeps you guessing well past the satisfying close of this excellent book. She expertly showcases the voices of five widely different characters throughout. Learning about their pasts definitely keeps you engaged in the hope for a better present and future for Nora, Vlado, Jasmine, Marlene, and Lewis.
I was provided a free advance reader copy from Lake Union Publishing in exchange for my honest review. The opinions shared in this review are my own.
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About the author: Melissa Payne
Melissa Payne is the bestselling, award-winning author of The Secrets of Lost Stones and Memories in the Drift. For as long as she can remember, Melissa has told stories in one form or another. She explored different forms of writing from high school newspaper articles to a graduate thesis to blogging about marriage and motherhood. However, she first learned the real importance of storytelling while working for a residential and day treatment center for abused and neglected children. There, she wrote speeches and letters to raise funds for the children exposing the painful truth through real life stories written to invoke a call to action in the reader; to give, to help, to make a difference. Melissa’s love of writing and sharing stories in all forms endured through the years. She lives in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains with her husband and three children, a friendly mutt, a very loud cat, and the occasional bear. Learn more about Melissa Payne here.
About Andrea Peskind Katz from GREAT THOUGHTS, GREAT READERS:
Andrea Peskind Katz runs Great Thoughts, Great Readers, a Book Salon presented via her private FB group where approximately 5000 prolific readers and authors interact. She also founded Greatthoughts.com, a lifestyle website blog focusing on Great Books and Great Travel. To quote Robert Frost, she created her “second act” career to “unite my avocation and my vocation”. After 20 years in high-pressure sales, Andrea retired to spend time doing what she loves best: hanging with her family, and reading good books.
Each month, Andrea chooses a book for 50PlusToday that is either written by or for 50Plus individuals.