Nine-year-old Jasper Leary has been abandoned by his mother. They took off one day, her telling him little more than that he was going to visit his uncle's farm for a while. She told her own brother little more, just that she wanted him to take care of her son and that she would be back. But as the days pass, and she doesn't come back, Jasper starts to fear the worse. And so Jasper begins to snoop and listen in when he isn't supposed to, all in an attempt to find out why his mother left him.
Apparently Althea is in some trouble. Trouble Jasper can't quite understand or figure out. But it's trouble that has the cops and some very unsavory characters searching for the missing woman. And yes, as it turns out, she is missing. Her car is discovered abandoned and even her husband has no idea where she might be.
D.M. Pulley's latest pits a nine year old against mob bosses, bootleggers, and murderers as he searches for clues about his mother. One of those clues is the book mentioned in the title, a diary his mother wrote when she was just a teen, found hidden in the burned shell of her childhood home.
I have somewhat mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, I liked the mystery and the suspense of the tale. I was invested in Jasper's story and wanted to find out the truth about his mother. On the other hand there was something that kept me from really loving the story.
In the end I think it was simply that I wanted more from The Buried Book. The heart of the story concerns organized crime, racketeering, murder, and a history of violence and secrets all set in 1952.
But, because our narrator is a nine year old who barely understands many of these details, they're not delved into as much as I really might have liked. Admittedly this limited viewpoint is something I do generally enjoy, but in this case I think it just didn't completely work for me.
Which again is not to say that I didn't like the story as written. Jasper's innocence does, at times, mean that the reader has to become a bit of a detective as well. It's never unclear what's happening but there are times when you're left to wonder about the more I mentioned above.
All in all, The Buried Book was a good read. It's piqued my interest in a few of the topics brought up as well, which means I may just seek out some things to satisfy my curiosity.
To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.
For more on D. M. Pulley and her work you can visit her website here. You can also like her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.
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