I have mostly rolled my eyes at the panic around the flu strains, including H1N1. When the Y2K scare was upon us, I ignored it.  The question of what impact a pandemic or the breakdown of technology could have on my life was, well, something I found a waste of brainpower.

It would seem, then, that Carla Buckley‘s debut novel, The Things That Keep Us Here, would bore me.  It not only involves a flu scare, but it also has a huge societal crisis.

Boring me is the LAST thing this novel did. It kept me on my toes with its excellent writing and suspenseful plot.  The characters jumped off the page and joined me as I curled on my couch under two thick blankets.  I found myself looking at my woodstove and rural isolation with new eyes, starting conversations with my husband about meat storage in the absence of electricity, and taking inventory of my pantry staples.

It didn’t hurt that Buckley wrote about central Ohio sights with a familiarity I recognized as coming from a fellow Buckeye. 🙂

I’ve probably told you too much, and I don’t want to spoil this book.  It gets my highest recommendation and I can’t wait to see what comes next from Buckley!

I received an advance copy of this book as part of the Pump Up Your Book virtual book tour.  But I didn’t give it kudos because of that.  I really liked it, and I won’t be giving my copy away.  I think it’s good enough to reread.  (And it’s probably going to be responsible for the amount of dried goods in my pantry supplies for a while.)