Posted in BOOK REVIEWS

Every Mountain Made Low by Alex White

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Alex White was born and raised in the American south. He takes photos, writes music and spends hours on YouTube watching other people blacksmith. He values challenging and subversive writing, but he’ll settle for a good time.

In the shadow of rockets in Huntsville, Alabama, Alex lives and works as an experience designer with his wife, son, two dogs and a cat named Grim. Favored past times include Legos and racecars. He takes his whiskey neat and his espresso black.

Alex is the author of THE SALVAGERS book series (Orbit, 2018), a magical space opera treasure hunt, and EVERY MOUNTAIN MADE LOW (Solaris, 2016), a dystopian Southern American tale.
DESCRIPTION:
Loxley Fiddleback can see the dead, but the problem is… the dead can see her.

Ghosts have always been cruel to Loxley Fiddleback – but none more than the spirit of her only friend, alive only hours earlier. Loxley isn’t equipped to solve a murder: she lives near the bottom of a cutthroat, strip-mined metropolis known as “The Hole,” suffers from crippling anxiety and can’t cope with strangers. Worse still, she’s haunted.

She inherited her ability to see spirits from the women of her family, but the dead see her, too. Ghosts are drawn to her, and their lightest touch leaves her with painful wounds.

Loxley swears to take blood for blood and find her friend’s killer. In doing so, she uncovers a conspiracy that rises all the way to the top of The Hole. As her enemies grow wise to her existence, she becomes the quarry, hunted by a brutal enforcer named Hiram McClintock. In sore need of confederates, Loxley must descend into the strangest depths of the city in order to have the revenge she seeks and, ultimately, her own salvation.

REVIEW:
Dealing with disabilities, sexual assault, murder, torture…not exactly story hour topics. And that is just simplifying the main topic. imagine being me… as analytical as I am trying to not overly analyse and not loose yourself in the process… Well, not happening …
IT IS AMAZING TO READ IT! NEVER LOSE THE OPPORTUNITY TO. Different doesn’t begin to describe it. I am absolutely smitten with it. Some might find it’s lenght overwellming but with so much story to tell, it’s little wonder that the length is what it is.
The world the reader is thrown into is a heavily stratified one, geographically and socially. The population appear to live in concentric rings within a mountain which is itself being mined for ore. Each ring closer to the floor of the workings also seems to indicate a drop in social class. The higher rings are populated by foremen, engineers and technical specialists, or, even further up, by corporate presidents. The lower rings are filled with workers, slumlords, the baffled and the dispossessed. Those working the mines are protected at shift change by armed guards – though they seem to serve the dual purpose of protecting the miners and effectively restraining them.
This towering society, delving into the pit, is a part of something larger, rising out of Alabama. There are other cities – Jacksonville, Atlanta – within reach, though all seem to be under the nominal authority of “The Con”, a sprawling corporation which effectively owns the continental United States. The Con are ruthless and exploitative, driving their own agenda of profit without much in the way of mercy. For all that though, they’re a part of a thriving urban ecosystem, and the brief piece of their history that is mentioned is one I’d like to see explored further.
Is it worth reading? I think the unique perspective of the protagonist may make it a struggle in some cases, and I’d suggest reading a sample first, if you can. But if the prose works for you, then the world and characters are vivid and interesting, and perhaps a little different from anything else available right now. It’s a good story, in a world I want to see more of, with an ambitiously portrayed main character – I enjoyed it, and I’d recommend you give it a try, to see if you do as well.
A sort of dystopian meets crime thriller ghost story, Every Mountain Made Low is a very interesting addition to bookshelves. I haven’t seen such unflinching diversity for a while, and it was so nice to read about characters who aren’t in the mainstream but don’t even really ponder on the fact that they aren’t. Though things drifted off towards the end for me, I enjoyed reading it for the most part and think the adult crime genre will welcome it happily.5FOXGIVEN
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Author:

A potato with a book. Screams German words when angry. Known as the Mid-night Chocolate Thief. Breathes to write and mingle. Observes and remembers. Pokes you when you least expect it. Can be put on a stand by mode with a cup of coffee/ tea.

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