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Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. He was electrocuted at an evangelical road show when the metal cross on top of the revival tent was struck by lightn It's the Great Depression and Mary Mabel McTavish is suicidal. Paperback , pages. Published April 19th by Dundurn first published January 1st Bony Blithe Award Nominee To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Apr 10, Gaele rated it really liked it Shelves: Utterly intriguing and wholly frustrating by halves, my reaction to this book was also mixed, although I will give great kudos to Allan Stratton for the clever arguments against hypocrisy that he managed to pull off to great effect.

But, she was the one hiccup in an otherwise clever and engaging book, rife with humor, pointed satire and cleverly plotted schemes all unmasked to their agendas by the writing and twists used to move the story forward.


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The early chapters of the story are slow and serve to set the background for the fast-paced character laden moments that come later. Mixing slapstick humor without turning it into a panto, adding a tinge of darkness and irony, and keeping a vulgar sense of honesty that imbues a sense of anger to the revelations of various behaviors rooted in hypocrisy that are unearthed, Stratton takes on media, religion, society and government: Yet, what emerges is a smartly crafted, with the exception of the title character, the unwitting and often oblivious pawn to the machinations of those who seek control, power and influence.

Add in the struggles of the Great Depression, and people were desperate for quick cures, diversion and a possible chance to get away from their own issues. Not unlike the culture of fear created since the advent of , media and governmental manipulations of the population need a figurehead that is willing or complicit, to aid in spreading the message and achieving the goals of those behind the scenes. Getting to see the agenda behind the stories and manipulations was revealing and gives readers the opportunity to apply answers received in this book to events in current day.

I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: Jun 17, Martyn Coppack rated it really liked it. May 22, Beth bibliobeth rated it liked it. I honestly don't quite know where to start with this review and I've spent some time mulling over the book since finishing it and am still none the wiser on how to get some coherent thoughts down to express the complexity of mixed feelings I have about this novel!

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The Resurrection Of Mary Mabel McTavish is a book that has been languishing on my Netgalley "to read" list for quite a long time now and as I'm making a concerted effort to improve my Netgalley ratio this year, I thought it was about t I honestly don't quite know where to start with this review and I've spent some time mulling over the book since finishing it and am still none the wiser on how to get some coherent thoughts down to express the complexity of mixed feelings I have about this novel!

The Resurrection Of Mary Mabel McTavish is a book that has been languishing on my Netgalley "to read" list for quite a long time now and as I'm making a concerted effort to improve my Netgalley ratio this year, I thought it was about time I read it. As soon as I reminded myself of the synopsis, I have to say I was excited. The Great Depression, 's Hollywood and a normal girl who becomes an overnight sensation after bringing a young boy back to life after just putting her hands on him? Yes please, I'll have some of that. Excuse me while I'm still formulating my thoughts.

Okay, so this novel had so much promise and at times, was executed absolutely wonderfully, then there were other times where I felt the narrative dragged unnecessarily and that was a real shame. It divided me so much that at times I wanted to give it three stars, at times four stars, most of the time somewhere in between at three and a half stars and very occasionally, two stars.

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I struggle to recall a time in the recent past where a book has twisted my opinion this much and to be frank, I'm still attempting to work out why. There were so many positives - the plot which INSTANTLY made me want to read it, the wry humour and satire which did make me smile on multiple occasions and the way in which the author explored the idea of religion, society and morals, especially after an event as life-changing as The Great Depression.

In fact, this novel got off to a terrific start, following our heroine Mary Mabel McTavish as she leads a humdrum slave-like existence with a distant and occasionally cold father and the reader feels her despair at life and misery over the loss of her mother and the blase attitude of her only other caregiver. Her attempted suicide is prevented at the last minute with a hallucination of her mother's ghost and a feeling of power that she in turn, bestows on a young boy, Timmy Beeford, bringing him back to life and returning a slightly exasperating little human to his weary parents.

This was all great and incredibly intriguing to read about. I think things went downhill for me when people start to capitalise on Mary's powers and use her abominably in order to make money of their own.

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It was humorous at points sure, but there were times when I just wanted to shake Mary and open her eyes as to how she was being manipulated. I think the two saving graces time and time again in this narrative were the owner of The Bentwhistle Academy For Young Ladies, Ms Bentwhistle who did make me howl with laughter at times, especially when she decides to pull the wool over the Americans' eyes in pretending she's one of the gentry. Obviously, she's intended to be a shady, rather villainous character compared to our heroine but by the end of the novel, I just found her hilarious.

Then there was our avid preacher, Brother Percy Brubacher who is incredibly odd and a little scary!


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Sadly, apart from these two, most of the other characters, even our female lead felt decidedly two-dimensional and unbelievable and this did affect my enjoyment of the novel as a whole. Hope this review made some kind of sense - if I had to sum it up I would say interesting premise, a few brilliant characters and good use of humour but at times the characterisation and plot suffer from peaks and troughs.

This unfortunately means that at times the story drags and becomes much less compelling. For my full review and many more, please visit my blog at http: Nov 23, Kim rated it really liked it. When I read the description for this book on NetGalley, I was very much intrigued and requested the book for review. To be honest, I wasn't quite sure how I felt about the book until I was a little over halfway through the story. There was a lot to the story, not only in the cast of characters but locations as well. The story began in a small town in Canada but soon spanned the entire continental United States.

The Resurrection of Mary Mabel McTavish

Though the story did have a handful of main characters, the supporting cast was quite When I read the description for this book on NetGalley, I was very much intrigued and requested the book for review. Though the story did have a handful of main characters, the supporting cast was quite large.

Many of the well-known names of the Depression era appeared in the story as it progressed, including William Randolph Hearst and J. Though they were supporting characters in the book, their depictions were every bit as big as the papers of the day described them. Each of the main characters had their own depth and background as well, making them stand out from the crowds in the book. It was easy to despise those who thought only of themselves Floyd and Ms. From behind the facade, there are dark shadows, social criticism and dark dark thoughts. Which makes for quite a journey. The s were the heyday of Hollywood — film and TV were becoming more and more popular.

Radio was a new and exciting format and the ways people communicated with each other and enjoyed art and the social scene were being changed in Hollywood. Hollywood was therefore the place to be.

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Some would go further than others so the range of activities and behaviours were sometimes illegal or not far from it. The media can manipulate quicker than most and Hollywood was one large mirror where you could see whatever you wanted to. Ths book was a shock in that it was a lot of fun and a bit naughty. It was hilarious, close to the edge, weird and a catch you off guard kind of read and the journey throughout the history of Canada and America was a particularly nice theme to the whole story.

His ability to make extraordinary events seem somehow plausible, combined with his mastery of wit and language, leaves us shaking our heads at one moment, and laughing out loud the next. Although Mary Mabel, the somewhat unwitting pawn in a cruel and deceptive game played by Floyd and the others, is at the heart of this shady farce, we ultimately learn very little about her.

As a result, we do not come to understand her any better than do those who seek to exploit her. Notwithstanding this drawback, The Resurrection of Mary Mabel McTavish contains a good deal of resonance for our modern age.