Centuries of June

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Centuries of June

Jake is heading to the bathroom in the middle of the night when the next thing he knows is that he's on the floor with a hole in his head, and there are eight women in his bed. Telling the story of how he ended up on the floor, Jake keeps getting interrupted by the women attempting to kill him one by one, and then sharing their stories. Each of the women come from a different time in American history and all share the link of being done wrong by their man.

This was an extremely odd and different read, a mystery crossed with a ghost story with humor and history mixed in for good measure. The reader almost needs a scorecard to help keep track of the women and murder attempts. This is a multi-layered story, rich with detail and wonderfully quirky characters.

Book Blurb for Centuries of June

Keith Donohue has been praised for his vivid imagination and for evoking “the otherworldly with humor and the ordinary with wonder” (Audrey Niffenegger). His first novel, The Stolen Child, was a national bestseller, and his second novel, Angels of Destruction, was hailed as “a magical tale of love and redemption that is as wonderfully written as it is captivating” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette). Centuries of June is a bold departure, a work of dazzling breadth and technical virtuosity.

Set in the bathroom of an old house just before dawn on a night in June, Centuries of June is a black comedy about a man who is attempting to tell the story of how he ended up on the floor with a hole in his head. But he keeps getting interrupted by a series of suspects—eight women lying in the bedroom just down the hall. Each woman tells a story drawn from five centuries of American myth and legend in a wild medley of styles and voices.

Centuries of June is a romp through history, a madcap murder mystery, an existential ghost story, and a stunning tour de force at once ingenious, sexy, inspiring, and ultimately deeply moving.

Night Owl Reviews Aug, 2011 4.25