The Storyteller (The Riverman Trilogy #3) by Aaron Starmer

51h34trhrhl-_sx331_bo1204203200_★★★☆☆ (3/5) – The Storyteller (The Riverman Trilogy #3) by Aaron Starmer is not a bad book, but it’s not great either. I definitely expected more answers in this final novel in the series. Looking back at the full story, I feel like this trilogy could have been a single book that was extended by the publisher to make more of a profit. There were some good moments (I liked parts of Luna’s story), but overall it just felt like the author didn’t know where he wanted the story to end up.  There were more than a few unanswered questions.

From Amazon:

Keri Cleary is worried about her brother, Alistair. Everyone is worried about Alistair. As the one witness to a shooting, he has been shocked into silence. But everyone needs to know three things: Who shot Kyle Dwyer? Where is Charlie Dwyer? What does this all have to do with the disappearance of Fiona Loomis?

Perhaps the answers lie in stories. As Alistair makes strange confessions to his sister, Keri becomes inspired. She tells stories, tales that may reveal hidden truths, fiction that may cause real things to happen. In the concluding volume of the Riverman Trilogy, readers are asked to consider the source of inspiration, the borders of reality and the power of storytelling. They are asked to forgive monsters, to imagine alternate dimensions, and to believe in a phosphorescent wombat who assures us that gone for now is not necessarily gone for good.

The Whisper (The Riverman Trilogy #2) by Aaron Starmer

51oivexam-l-_sx329_bo1204203200_★★★1/2 (3.5/5) – The Whisper by Aaron Starmer is the second novel in The Riverman Trilogy.  While very well-written, I found that this book was not grounded enough in reality for me.  I’m still looking forward to reading the final novel in this trilogy.

From Amazon: Twelve-year-old Alistair Cleary has washed up on shore. But where? It seems to be Aquavania, the magical realm where children create entire worlds from their imagination. There’s something wrong, though. The creators have disappeared and the worlds are falling apart. All Alistair wants is to find his friend Fiona Loomis and go home. Easier said than done. Animals made of starlight, a megalomaniacal boy king, and astronauts who peddle riddles are hard enough to outwit, but they’re only the beginning. To find Fiona, Alistair must travel from world to world. He must confront the mistakes of his past. And he must face countless monsters, including the soul-stealing stalker that some people call the Riverman, the merciless but misunderstood servant of Aquavania who refers to himself as the Whisper.

The Riverman by Aaron Starmer

51ur3roroal-_sx338_bo1204203200_★★★★★ (5/5) – The Riverman by Aaron Starmar is a very creative and interesting young adult novel! The ending was abrupt. It’s a good thing that this is the start of a trilogy!

From Amazon: Alistair Cleary is the kid who everyone trusts. Fiona Loomis is not the typical girl next door. Alistair hasn’t really thought of her since they were little kids until she shows up at his doorstep with a proposition: she wants him to write her biography. What begins as an odd vanity project gradually turns into a frightening glimpse into the mind of a potentially troubled girl. Fiona says that in her basement, there’s a portal that leads to a magical world where a creature called the Riverman is stealing the souls of children. And Fiona’s soul could be next. If Fiona really believes what she’s saying, Alistair fears she may be crazy. But if it’s true, her life could be at risk. In this novel from Aaron Starmer, it’s up to Alistair to separate fact from fiction, fantasy from reality.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

51gcnfto12bl-_sx308_bo1204203200_★★★★★ (5/5) – American Gods by Neil Gaiman is an incredible novel. Shadow’s story is the story of an elaborate two-man con. It’s a story of gods, men, and America. The writing style is straightforward, the plot is fantastical, and the characters are well-crafted and, for the most part, believable. It’s not my favorite book, but it’s an epic book. Highly recommended.

From Amazon: First published in 2001, American Gods became an instant classic—an intellectual and artistic benchmark from the multiple-award-winning master of innovative fiction, Neil Gaiman. Now discover the mystery and magic of American Gods in this tenth anniversary edition. Newly updated and expanded with the author’s preferred text, this commemorative volume is a true celebration of a modern masterpiece by the one, the only, Neil Gaiman.

A storm is coming . . .

Locked behind bars for three years, Shadow did his time, quietly waiting for the magic day when he could return to Eagle Point, Indiana. A man no longer scared of what tomorrow might bring, all he wanted was to be with Laura, the wife he deeply loved, and start a new life.

But just days before his release, Laura and Shadow’s best friend are killed in an accident. With his life in pieces and nothing to keep him tethered, Shadow accepts a job from a beguiling stranger he meets on the way home, an enigmatic man who calls himself Mr. Wednesday. A trickster and rogue, Wednesday seems to know more about Shadow than Shadow does himself.

Life as Wednesday’s bodyguard, driver, and errand boy is far more interesting and dangerous than Shadow ever imagined—it is a job that takes him on a dark and strange road trip and introduces him to a host of eccentric characters whose fates are mysteriously intertwined with his own. Along the way Shadow will learn that the past never dies; that everyone, including his beloved Laura, harbors secrets; and that dreams, totems, legends, and myths are more real than we know. Ultimately, he will discover that beneath the placid surface of everyday life a storm is brewing—an epic war for the very soul of America—and that he is standing squarely in its path.

Relevant and prescient, American Gods has been lauded for its brilliant synthesis of “mystery, satire, sex, horror, and poetic prose” (Michael Dirda, Washington Post Book World) and as a modern phantasmagoria that “distills the essence of America” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer). It is, quite simply, an outstanding work of literary imagination that will endure for generations.