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He began his professional career by writing comics, then moved from his home town of Wichita, Kansas, to Los Angeles where he became a staff writer for Disney Television Animation. He is a lover of dogs, estimating that a hundred or more dogs have passed through his household, most of them as fosters awaiting adoption.

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He has an inexplicable fondness for s science fiction movies and is fascinated by the workings and failings of the human brain. Follow the author on their blog, Facebook, or Twitter account for the latest updates on book releases: Embed on your blog or site: Copy paste the html code into your webpage.

The Summer We Lost Alice is a story of loss and grief, of courage, of family, and ultimately, of healing and the triumph of an enduring spirit. Book Insight File Size: IBD Badge Embed on your blog or site: Saying the same thing over and over again. It did feel as if the author flipped through a thesaurus during editing. Some of the works felt out of place. Truthfully, this was a fun read. Jan Strnad did a great job at tying up all the ends. Every question was answered even if it was in a way I dislike.

If you enjoy supernatural type novels this would be a good one to read. If you prefer a more realistic ending then this would not be for you. Apr 04, Clary rated it did not like it. This book starts off very well but just can't keep it together to the end. Ethan Opochensky goes to spend the summer with his Aunt and Uncle and cousins in a rural Kansas town called Meddersville because his parents are having trouble and may get divorced.


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The initial distrust and then the growing relationship between him and his younger cousin, Alice, seems to foreshadow something big about their futures. Kids go missing that summer in Meddersville and his life is changed forever. The descripti This book starts off very well but just can't keep it together to the end. The description of the family in Meddersville and the cousins and the townspeople is wonderful; the book had so much promise during the first part. It ultimately turns into two different stories though and the second one does not live up to the promise of the first.

The second part of the book takes place when Ethan is an adult and working as a tv psychic. He returns to the little town and unfortunately, it falls completely apart here. Everything sane and stable and ordinary changes into crazy and supernatural and just plain odd and creepy. I very much do not recommend.

Dec 29, Carla rated it it was ok. I loved the first part of this book. A ten year old Ethan leaves the city to spend the summer with his cousin, Alice, who lives in the country. Their friendship blossoms, even in the midst of two kidnappings that occur that summer. Then Alice becomes the third.

The Summer We Lost Alice : Jan Strnad :

Written beautifully, I was most eager to continue on to part two. Flash forward twenty five years -- the killings have begun again, and a now grown Ethan returns to Meddersville to visit his aunt and to see if he can help solve the kidnapp I loved the first part of this book. Flash forward twenty five years -- the killings have begun again, and a now grown Ethan returns to Meddersville to visit his aunt and to see if he can help solve the kidnappings.

This section of the book serves as a bridge to the third: Then it gets really weird -- almost ridiculous with the introduction of the paranormal and supernatural. The writing becomes simplistic, the story just way beyond unbelievable. I thought there might be something wrong with my perception of this novel, but after reading other Goodreaders' reviews, I found I was not alone.

A really great beginning gone bad -- I am so disappointed. Jul 11, Paige rated it liked it. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I really enjoyed the first half of this book, as it is a well-written story and thoroughly engrossing. That said, I wish there had been some kind of indication in the description about the supernatural elements that would become a prominent part of the second half of the book. What began quite well quickly took a turn for the worse when the quirky old woman the child protagonist BELIEVED to be a witch turned out to ACTUALLY be a witch, attempting to protect the town from a demon cloud that is ou I really enjoyed the first half of this book, as it is a well-written story and thoroughly engrossing.

I finished the book out of curiosity to see just where the author was going, but would have given it a significantly higher rating had the author stuck to a drama with a more believable explanation.

The Summer We Lost Alice

Of course, this type of story just may not be my thing. Jun 21, Stephanie rated it liked it. Part 2, however, felt like it was written by someone else entirely. Part 1 was gripping, with just enough clues here and there for the reader to piece together, effectively creating that page-turning suspense. But Part 2 was almost goofy. Instead of letting the reader piece together clues, information was just dropped like a bomb that was supposed to make our jaws drop the characters' jaws all did.

It's sad because Part 1 was so amazing. I'd be interested to check out other books by Jan Strnad though, because she is capable of great writing and imagery, as evidenced in part 1, even if part 2 fell flat for me. But I am no longer a teenager who will believe in the supernatural unless there is some plausibility to get me where the author wants me to go. Still I guess we all still have a soft spot for those teenaged stories that sometimes had a little bit more truth to them then we would have liked.

Hell, I named my kid after a character in a V.

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Andrews book, so take my review for what it's worth. I thought this was going to be a typical mystery. I enjoyed the book until it crossed over into paranormal activities. Just not my thing. A boy gets sent to a small town to spend the summer with relatives. He and his cousin are typical kids enjoying the summer.

One night they sneak out and she disappears. He and the rest of her family spend the rest of their lives trying to understand what happened to her. When he's grown, he goes back to the town and helps solve the mystery of her disappearan I thought this was going to be a typical mystery. When he's grown, he goes back to the town and helps solve the mystery of her disappearance.


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  8. Someone into the paranormal would probably enjoy reading this book. Jul 10, Patrick rated it really liked it. The beginning of this book is so gripping, the characters so real, that I forgive it for waning a bit toward the end. The impact she has on him is permanent, though he is only with her a short time before she disappears forever.

    I couldn't stop reading after those intense scenes in the beginning. Jun 21, Valeria Jane rated it liked it. I quite enjoyed this book, especially the beginning, with the two children, Ethan and Alice and their family matters. Fair enough that young kids could believe in witches Ethan's profession in later life had nothing to do with contacting the dead, really. So the attempt to introduce the supernatural was really out of place for me. You can still enjoy the read, but I wish the author would re-write it without people "coming back". Mar 02, Michele Whitecotton rated it liked it.

    I liked the first half of this book. I enjoyed reading about the relationship between Alice and Ethan.

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    It was interesting when the children were disappearing and you thought it was some sort of serial killer or kidnapper. Once I found out what was really going on, I sort of lost interest. Witches and black clouds of evil and possessed tiki statues seemed really hokey and didn't cut it for me. Mar 08, Karen rated it liked it Shelves: An entertaining if far-fetched story with supernatural elements. I did enjoy the read, though not as much as I did the series of books by Arnaldur Indridason, which I think of in the same category of crime sleuthing.

    I can see this story as a great movie if done well.


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    6. I would give it 3. Mar 15, Sarah rated it it was ok Shelves: I personally liked the first half of this book better than the second half. It loses that unsettling feeling the story had in the beginning. This was a little different from what kind of horror stories I have. The story of Alice is a different one. You won't know until the author tells you what or who is responsible for the taking of the children in the town. Really a different kind of story one that if you like horror stories read this one. You will not be disappointed. Jul 05, Mona Lisa rated it it was ok. I was all involved with the first part-setting up the mystery of the children's disappearances.

      Then it turned all supernatural and paranormal on me! I thought it still might work out, but it just got out of hand with spirits, witches, reincarnation, psychics, etc. I won't be reading another by this author! Oct 28, Joanne rated it really liked it. The characters were well written and the storyline kept me interested from the beginning to the end.

      There were many unexpected twists and turns that held my attention. If you like this genre and I do it is a "must read. Mar 19, Cdorich rated it it was ok. I really enjoyed the way this book started out. I tried to continue reading but just became uninteresting to me I couldn't finish it - have no desire to. This was a great book! I started and finished it in one day - I literally could not put it down.

      Great story, great writing, quite a few times I laughed out loud and shared the excerpts with friends!

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