Friday, March 22, 2013

Straight Reading from the Library: Russian Dolls by Cristelle Comby

Thanks to Goddess Fish Promotions for sending me this book for review.  It's a New Adult, a relatively new genre that has come about to describe those books that are not YA, but that deal with college-aged (usually) adults. Wiki says, "New-adult Fiction or post-adolescent literature is a recent category of fiction for young adults first proposed by St. Martin's Press in 2009. St. Martin’s Press editors wanted to address the coming-of-age that also happens in a young person’s twenties. They wanted to consider stories about young adults who were legally adults, but who were still finding their way in building a life and figuring out what it means to be an adult."

For leaving a comment on this post, you have the chance to win an autographed copy of the book. Click here  to see the other stops on the tour and to have more chances to win.  It's well-worth the winning!


Alexandra Neve is a student at University College London whose world suddenly falls apart. When her best friend jumps from the university’s rooftop, she can’t stop herself from asking, ‘Why?’ The police rule her friend’s death a suicide and for them the case is closed — so whom can she turn to for help? Sometimes the person you need the most is the one you least expect to find, and in this case it’s none other than Ashford Egan, a blind middle-aged history professor, who’s more willing than most to listen to what she has to say. Neve and Egan are as different as they come. She’s restless, careless at times, and fearless when the need arises, while he’s almost the complete opposite: a deep thinker with an analytical mind, a highly rational and collected individual. As they enter the violent world of the Russian mafia, they must overcome their differences and learn to work together. It’s their only chance if they want to survive. 


As part of my job with the library, I've been reading a lot more YA and New Adult fiction--and this will be an interesting addition to our collection.  The unlikely teaming up of a student and professor (not to mention the fact that he's blind and almost universally unliked because of his caustic ways) is second only to the fact that they are drawn into such a multi-country scheme--almost by accident.

Alexandra Neve does not believe the police when they rule her best friend's death a suicide--and a chance discovery starts her on a journey to prove that there was more involved. Egan's keen hearing brings him into the mix and together they are able to put the pieces together and solve the mystery involved.

Ms.Comby writes the book in first person, present tense--that might be off-putting to some, but I was willing to give it a chance and soon became so immersed in the story that it didn't bother me as much as I was afraid it would. I would like to see future books in third person, however, just because I would love to see inside Ash Egain's mind.

He, to me, was the most interesting character, even though the book is told in Neve's POV.  The unlikely teaming works and I'm looking forward to reading more books in this series and to see how the characters develop more fully.


Cristelle Comby was born and raised in the French-speaking area of Switzerland, somewhere between Geneva and Lausanne, where she still resides.

Thanks to her insatiable thirst for American and British action films and television dramas, her English is fluent.

She attributes to her origins her ever-peaceful nature and her undying love for chocolate. She has a passion for art, which also includes an interest in drawing and acting.

Russian Dolls is her first new-adult novel, and she’s hard at work on the next titles in the series.

Find out more at

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