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The Salt Line Hardcover – September 5, 2017
"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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*Southern Living Magazine's “One of the Best Southern Books of the Year”*
*SIBA 2017 Okra Pick*
“An exciting novel, with unexpected twists and turns and excellent character development.”—Los Angeles Times
“A deeply imagined, dystopian novel with beautiful prose and a superb understanding of human psychology.”—The Huffington Post
“Combining elements of sci-fi, thrillers and speculative fiction, The Salt Line is a page-turner. Ms. Goddard Jones…builds a believable world and generates tension effectively. The plot is action-driven, but an ensemble cast of characters keeps the story rooted in human emotions and motivations.”—Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“Great, near-future sci-fi...A propulsive, character-driven thriller...I really love this book.”—Kelly Link, the author of Get In Trouble and Magic for Beginners
“Jones' darkly clever worldbuilding creates a nightmare that seems far from unthinkable....It's The Hunger Games meets The Godfather meets Robin Cook, with female characters playing all the key roles. Hell, yeah.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Social commentary and intense thrills rolled into one seamless story. Outwardly an adventure story, this suspenseful novel uses a thrilling premise to examine the fallout of abandoning universal freedoms in order to ensure collective safety.”—Publishers Weekly
“The mystery-like structure keeps the reader guessing as Jones switches seamlessly from evocative pastoral descriptions of North Carolina and Tennessee to action-packed scenes of violence....At once dark, disturbing, and highly enjoyable, this is a timely novel bursting with ideas.”—Booklist
“Terrifying and bold...A character-driven thriller with shocking plot twists, jaw-dropping revelations and splashes of horror, sci-fi and romance...Jones’ unique riff on dystopian fiction as a platform for examining present-day concerns like climate change, immigration, technology and fundamental human rights offers plenty of surprises, but the most disarming aspect of The Salt Line is the unexpected tenderness expressed by its fully fleshed out, complicated characters who are fighting not just for their lives but for their very humanity. More than just a high-octane, speculative survivalist tale, The Salt Line is also a powerful meditation on humanity’s fragility and resilience.”—BookPage
"A taught tale of survival and social commentary." —Locus Magazine
"A lot like what Golding might have produced had he diverged into a world of arachnids. And, it must be noted, nearly as well examined and executed." —Mountain Times (Western North Carolina)
“Engrossing...The Salt Line is a well-written, literary novel. Making deft use of shifting third-person viewpoints, Jones creates complex and interesting characters....These richly drawn characters and the world in which they struggle provide twists and turns that will draw in any reader brave enough to enter a grim and frightening world with killer ticks.”—Greensboro News & Record
“The Salt Line is a ‘literary thriller’ that manages to fulfill each side of that phrase with admirable vigor. It's both gripping and emotionally resonant, both suspenseful and heartfelt. Holly Goddard Jones has a true storyteller’s instinct for suspense, along with a deep gift for empathy. She’ll make your heart race as you turn the pages, and then she’ll crack it open a little before she’s through.”—Scott Smith, author of The Ruins and A Simple Plan
“With this intense, arrestingly vivid fever dream, Holly Goddard Jones fully realizes a completely original and wholly terrifying dystopian nightmare. Jones's wild, ventriloquist talent unfurls in this novel like never before. Each magnetic character in The Salt Line is boldly alive to the novel's world, at once monstrous, uncanny, and yet entirely ours.”—Claire Vaye Watkins, author of Gold Fame Citrus and Battleborn
PRAISE FOR THE NEXT TIME YOU SEE ME
“Impressive...[Jones] also has a precise eye and empathy to burn, bringing many of her characters to well-rounded life.”—The New York Times
“[A]n astoundingly good novel...Jones writes with authority and a deep generosity...The result is simply mesmerizing.”—Gillian Flynn
“So rich in character...An immensely satisfying and skillful debut novel.”—Kate Atkinson
“A genre-defying novel filled with mystery...Beautifully articulate.”—USA Today
PRAISE FOR GIRL TROUBLE
“The beauty of these stories (and they are exhilarating) stems from how deeply we're pulled into this complex world, nudged to recognize the thin line between missed opportunity and despair, inarticulate love and loss.”—O Magazine
“Gritty, eloquent dispatches from the heartland...Jones' hauntingly accomplished language lifts the mundane to the level of profound tragedy.”—Chicago Tribune
“Jones' sparkling debut collection zeroes in on lonely searching souls making do in a quiet Kentucky town.”—People
“Holly Goddard Jones is blessed with wisdom beyond her years, a gimlet eye, and an enviable literary talent; her debut collection...is a fierce and exhilarating achievement.”—Claire Messud
“A grand debut of a writer who is assured, sensitive, and wonderfully skillful...A marvelous work of heartbreaking wisdom.”—Edward P. Jones
“Jones has a voice as expansive, complex, and beautiful as the country itself.”—Joshua Ferris
About the Author
Holly Goddard Jones is the author of The Next Time You See Me and Girl Trouble (stories). Her work has appeared in The Best American Mystery Stories, New Stories from the South, Tin House magazine, and elsewhere. She was a recipient of The Fellowship of Southern Writers' Hillsdale Prize for Excellence in Fiction and of a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers' Award. She earned her M.F.A. from Ohio State University and her B.A. from the University of Kentucky. She teaches creative writing at UNC Greensboro and lives in Greensboro with her husband, Brandon, and their children.
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The latest group of adventure seekers have teamed up and trained to go out into nature on their adventure but what awaited them was more than they ever would have expected when the deadly disease-carrying ticks become the least of their worries. Ambushed by a group with guns the wealthy travelers are taken hostage and find themselves captives in Ruby City, a community made up of outer-zone survivors that none of them knew existed.
The Salt Line by Holly Goddard Jones is a book that I honestly expected to fall in love with but in the end ended up thinking this one was just an OK read. There were things in here that I really liked such as the plot in which the ticks have gotten so bad that people are hiding in safe areas. I mean come on, who hasn't seen on the news lately that ticks are even more dangerous these days, between the ticks and mosquito stories one would think maybe we do need burned out insect free areas. But the author took the story beyond that initial fear and went into much more so it actually had a bit more depth in that regard than I was expecting.
But as for the downside to this one I don't think that I was a huge fan of the style in which the story was written. The author chose to follow multiple characters and even the further you got there are more characters that are brought into the book and more drama piled on so there was a bit of a disconnect as far as connecting with any specific person or people on a deeper level. I also thought that the flashing back to learn of what led characters to get to where they were in the story didn't always flow well the way it was done. Not that any of this made the book terrible, just ended up being one that I wasn't totally in love with when finished.
I received an advance copy from the publisher via Edelweiss.