I finally take a chance…


The Guardians was released in 2011

Here we are. Two last posts, not counting the wrap up post. Can’t believe we’re almost at the end.

What got us here? One collection and eight books. Which left two novels. ‘The Guardians’ and ‘The Killing Circle.’ Finally, after the stunning ARC that was ‘The Residence’ I knew I had to finally get over my fear of finishing Andrew’s books.

So, really, why hadn’t I read these yet?

Well yes, part of it was my concern that I might stumble upon a Pyper book I didn’t enjoy. But, the real reason I’d not read ‘The Guardians’ yet was ridiculous. I stumbled upon a poor review of it on Goodreads. It swayed me. It got to me. It wasn’t detailed, it wasn’t an in-depth analysis of the novel. No, it was some crappy 2 star review that said something like “poor attempt at a haunted house book.” Some junk like that. And for whatever reason, that review stuck in my head and stayed there.

But, then I looked at the calendar and chuckled. It was going to be May soon. One year ago I did an attempt at Pyper-May-Nia! I wanted to actually do it well this year, something worthy of what Andrew has brought to my life. I knew I needed to read them all, and I flipped a coin and voila – ‘The Guardians’ was next.

This may very well be the first Canadian coming-of-age story I’ve read. It’s set in a small Canadian town and is small-town personified. Hell, Andrew could very well have walked the streets of Burton, where I grew up and set it there. I was stunned. Between the main character having a neurological condition, the heading back home after being away for so long story line and the inevitable running into old acquaintances, Andrew crafted a pure gem. But underneath all of that – this was one of the finest haunted house, paranormal stories I’ve ever read. It left me shattered in places, scared to death in others and the characters were so well done, I easily pictured those friends I had so many years ago in their places.

I make no secrets that I struggle to process where I came from. How things unraveled and while some of it was my fault, some of it was my former friends fault as well. I see it when I go back and run into them in Overwaitea, or at Carson’s Corner. I feel it when I see them post throwback photos and I’m never in them. It’s a point of my life that is filled with such joy but also such incredible sorrow.

‘The Guardians’ covers so much of those feelings. Once again, it seems like Pyper has written a book just for me and its an odd thing. I read a book like this and I want to message Andrew and just gush about it, but I try to walk that line of fan well. I don’t want to come off as crazy or pushy or too fan-boy (although I probably have and Andrew has been kind enough to not block me yet!) I imagine a lot of readers discover this with books they love. It’s a strange place to be, much like it’s a strange place when you go back home.

Andrew sets the tone with this book with two key lines. The first was that small towns have a way of forgetting the past. Bingo. Absolutely correct. Again, every time I go back to visit I am constantly surprised to see who is married to who now and who has kids with who.

The second line, which is a familiar refrain, is that you can’t always go home again.

Watching our main character try and come to grips with the death of a childhood friend as well as the clutch this haunted house has on their group was fantastic.

Once again, Andrew delivered a ‘must-read’ book.

When I finished reading this I was truly blown away.

I had already contacted Andrew and asked if he’d be up to another Pyper-May-Nia! and if so, would he be on board to be a bit more in depth. He kindly agreed.

I told him that I just needed to read ‘The Killing Circle’ and I would send him the book specific questions.

When I finished ‘The Guardians’ I was sure that I’d found my new favorite book of all time.

That was before I read ‘The Killing Circle.’

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