Mystery/Thriller/Crime Fiction are not my favorite genres, so it takes something pretty special to catch my attention there. So far I’ve enjoyed Bloodlines so much that it’s one of the stories that I actively monitor for updates. The author has a real skill with ending each chapter on a cliffhanger or similar pausing place that leaves the reader with questions, curiosity, and dread.
Zane, our protagonist is a young guy with a lot of problems. The story opens with him fired from his job, his mother dead in extremely questionable circumstances, his young teenage sister homeless and parentless, and the girl that he loves slipping away from him with ever increasing speed. The modern day poverty-stricken Oklahoma setting is dark, and it continues to get darker as Zane tries to navigate his way through the maze of pit-traps that his life has always been while the traps just keep getting deeper.
Atmosphere is a big thing in any genre of suspense writing, and lynnlipinski writes the Oklahoma setting with an insider’s knowledge, but with a clear eye that neither sentimentalizes nor sensationalizes the problems of rural poverty. H.P. Lovecraft once recommended that the sense of place or “atmosphere” can almost become a character in its own right. This is certainly true in Bloodlines. There’s a literary feel to Bloodlines that takes the already gripping storyline and moves it up a notch.
I also have a great deal of respect for the author’s portrayal of Zane’s Native American father and Zane’s own half-blood status. As the daughter of a Native American myself, I appreciate portrayals of Native Americans as individuals and not tropes. Zane’s father is a complicated person not only because of his culture and the crushing poverty of Reservation life but also because he’s a complicated and flawed person due to his own choices and circumstances. Zane is a flawed protagonist who makes the frustrating kinds of mistakes that a young man in his position might make no matter what the color of his skin. He’s likeable despite and because of his flaws, and all the more believable as a character because of them. Zane’s accompanied by a supporting cast of secondary characters who are also all drawn that a sympathetic but clear-eyed view that brings them to life so sharply that they feel like people you know.
There’s a space in my heart that’s the shape of you
No matter where you go, no matter what you do
That space will be here, and so will I
As life goes on and time goes by
We’ll both grow and change, my dear
That’s how we’ll make more memories to live there.
The sentence I hear most from well-meaning, conservative friends since President Trump’s election is this: “We suffered 8 years under Barack Obama.”
Fair enough. Let’s take a look.
The day Obama took office, the Dow closed at 7,949 points. Eight years later, the Dow had almost tripled, closing at 21,414.
General Motors and Chrysler were on the brink of bankruptcy, with Ford not far behind, and their failure, along with their supply chains, would have meant the loss of millions of jobs. Obama pushed through a controversial, $8o billion bailout to save the car industry. The U.S. car industry survived, started making money again, and the entire $80 billion was paid back, with interest.
While we remain vulnerable to lone-wolf attacks, no foreign terrorist organization has successfully executed a mass attack here since 9/11.
Obama ordered the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden.