Here is a quote from Kirkus Reviews in regards to Allison Pace’s new novel, Pug Hill:
Pace…has invented an emotionally complex and winning heroine… a remarkably sweet and affecting tale of inner growth.
Now here’s the thing about Kirkus: they hate EVERYBODY. Well okay, that’s an exaggeration but it is true that of all the publishing trade periodicals they are the least likely to give any author a free ride. It doesn’t matter if the genre is mystery, literary, non-fiction or chick-lit. They are completely unbiased when it comes to doling out criticism. For the record, of the four major publishing trade magazines (Publisher’s Weekly, Booklist, The Library Journal and Kirkus) Kirkus is the only one that has never reviewed me so I’m not trying to justify some negative remark they threw my way. I honestly don’t know if they’re aware of my existence and that’s fine with me.
But I’m getting off topic, the point is that Kirkus loved Pug Hill and if they loved it it’s a sure bet that everybody else will too. I’ve only just started reading it but Pace’s heroine, Hope McNeill, has already managed to endear herself to me.
The book begins with a description of Pug Hill, the spot in Central Park where everybody takes their Pugs. Hope, who adores this breed of dog, goes there on a regular basis despite the fact that she doesn’t have a Pug. Her reasons for remaining petless are due to her long hours away from her apartment, the size of said apartment, timing in terms of what’s going on in her life and so on and so forth. Is she making up excuses? Absolutely. But this excerpt explains how Hope managed to win me over so quickly:
Usually I’m the only one at Pug Hill without a Pug. And that may seem kind of sad, but actually it’s not. I like to think that, in its own way, it’s rather hopeful really, if you think about it.
It’s Hope’s adeptness at conveying her unique and charming world view through seemingly mundane observations that makes her so appealing. Yes she’s flawed but even when she’s not completely happy with her life she manages to recognize hope when others would have only seen cause for pessimism.
There’s no question about it, Pace’s star is on the rise. Her first book, If Andy Warhol Had A Girlfriend was also adored by critics and for good reason. So check out her book and check out her blog (especially if you love Pugs!).
Oh and tomorrow Alina will be guest blogging so be sure to stop by and join the fun!
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