Stories of ‘Mother, Mother’ and Uncle Si

A creepy thriller starts with an ordinary family and ends in nail-biting suspense in Koren Zailckas’ “Mother, Mother.”

The Hurst family seems like the average, every day family, with Josephine Hurst as the lovely matriarch of three children. But the further the reader goes, the more the story begins to unravel. Her oldest daughter, Rose, is missing. Violet, the middle child, is fasting and ends up in a psych ward. And Will, the youngest, has been diagnosed with Asperger’s and epilepsy and is being homeschooled after being bullied. And their father, Douglas, is an alcoholic. Told in alternating points of view from Violet and Will, the real story of the family is parced out bit-by-bit: Josephine is actually a controlling narcissistic bully. Her creepy controlling and self-centered ways has driven Rose and Violet away from her, but she has focused all of her “good” attentions on Will, which is having an affect in just as creepy of a way. As psychiatrists and children’s services attempt to help Violet and Will, Violet begins to finally see her mother for what she truly is, and begins to question what really happened with Rose. And when she gets a letter from Rose asking her to come stay with her once she gets out, everything begins to change and all sorts of behaviors come to light.

A horrifying and deeply moving look into the dark secrets in a seemingly “perfect family,” this is a hard-hitting page turner. If you’ve ever known anyone like Josephine, and chances are you have, it makes the story that much more disturbing.

“Mother, Mother” is published by Crown. It is $24 and 363 pages long.

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Get some laughs from popular television show, “Duck Dynasty” as the favorite uncle, Si, tells stories from his past in “Si-Cology 1: Tales & Wisdom From Duck Dynasty’s Favorite Uncle” by Si Robertson with Mark Schlabach.

Famous for his tall tales, Si swears that his stories are 95 percent truthful, but reminds the reader that he loves a good story – especially after being cooped up in a duck blind for hours with his family!

Si writes about his childhood with older brother Phil. He writes about the family pets, including two dogs and for a time, a squirrel and pigeons. He writes about his fear of the dark, and how his brothers teased him about it, including convincing him to meet them at a camping trip out in the middle of nowhere…and not showing up. He writes about encountering snakes and alligators during hunts, and once mistaking an alligator for a log.

Si also writes about his time in the military, including serving in Vietnam and later in Germany. He writes of his wife (never seen on the television show) of 43 years, and their two children. He even writes candidly about his heart attack and times when his older brother struggled.

Once only meant to show up a few times on the “Duck Dynasty” show, Si has become a favorite character and his funny stories will charm all readers! It’s a quick read that will endlessly entertain.

“Si-Cology 1” is published by Howard Books, a division of Simon & Schuster. It is $22.99 and 229 pages long.