Book Beginnings is a book meme hosted by Rose City Reader where participants share the first sentence (or so) of the book, along with initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.
The Friday 56 is hosted by Freda’s Voice, and the rules are quite simple: Grab a book, any book, and turn to page 56 or 56% in your e-reader. Find any non-spoilery sentence(s) and post.
This week’s book: No Saints in Kansas
Author: Amy Brashear
Publisher: Soho Teen
Publication Date: November 14, 2017
A gripping reimagining of Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood and the brutal murders that inspired it
November is usually quiet in Holcomb, Kansas, but in 1959, the town is shattered by the quadruple murder of the Clutter family. Suspicion falls on Nancy Clutter’s boyfriend, Bobby Rupp, the last one to see them alive.
New Yorker Carly Fleming, new to the small Midwestern town, is an outsider. She tutored Nancy, and (in private, at least) they were close. Carly and Bobby were the only ones who saw that Nancy was always performing, and that she was cracking under the pressure of being Holcomb’s golden girl. The secret connected Carly and Bobby. Now that Bobby is an outsider, too, they’re bound closer than ever.
Determined to clear Bobby’s name, Carly dives into the murder investigation and ends up in trouble with the local authorities. But that’s nothing compared to the wrath she faces from Holcomb once the real perpetrators are caught. When her father is appointed to defend the killers of the Clutter family, the entire town labels the Flemings as traitors. Now Carly must fight for what she knows is right.
When I first heard of this book, I was quite intrigued. It is such an interesting concept to focus on the teen side of Capote’s In Cold Blood. Although this is a fictional story, many of the facts surrounding the actual murders are included. The book reminds me of Stand By Me in a way, as Carly is trying to make sense of what happened to her friend.
I can smell the kerosene. The police tape is the only thing that separates me from the men loading a pickup truck with the bloodstained blankets, sheets, pillows- even a couch. I grip the bicycle handlebars so tight my knuckles turn white.
“Didn’t you tutor the girl in math?” Dad chimes in. I nod. And that’s it, really. Dad just answered the question for me. I’m always going to be known as Carly Fleming, the math tutor, and I don’t want that, because I don’t want to accept that.