Erryn reviews They Told Me I was Everything (The First Quarto Book 1) by Gregory Ashe. (Published by Hodgkin and Blount on December 16, 2020. Audio length 9 hrs 53 mins. Narrated by J.F. Harding. Ebook released October 13, 2020. 373 pages.) An audio code was provided in exchange for an honest review.
Why I read: I was intrigued.
Auggie is starting his first year at Wroxall College. It’s a punishment, and he’s determined to make his way through the year, prove himself, and earn the right to go back home.
Theo is a grad student recovering from a terrible car accident. He’s lost his husband and their daughter, and he’s trying to figure out how to keep going.
When both are tangled up in a murder, though, they have to set their personal problems aside and work together — first to clear their names, and then, when the killer turns his attention on them, to survive.
But what might really kill them is finishing a seminar together on King Lear.
To read Dana’s review, click here.
You Just Saw a Murder
Auggie thinks he’s hot shit. He’s a social media influencer on Instagram back when the platform was in its infancy. Back when breaking out was easier simply because most users hadn’t figured out how to leverage the platform. No worries for Auggie, though, he’s got it covered. Has it already gotten him into trouble? Yep. Is that going to stop him? Oh hell no. He’s got to get through two semesters at Wroxall College in Missouri and then he can head back to SoCal with lucrative endorsement deals where he can make it big. All nice and neat. Who can fuck that up? Well, a night of carousing in a stolen car might…
Theo is the opposite of Auggie. He lost his beloved husband and daughter in a horrific car accident and is now living life by going through the motions. He has teaching, his studies toward his PhD, and Shakespeare. Always Shakespeare. He and Auggie meet in, uh, interesting circumstances, but life gets really complicated when Auggie turns up in Theo’s class. Now, there’s no hankie panky while they are student/teacher, but they do have a murder to solve.
I couldn’t see, at first, how a young prof and an 18-year-old were going to do this. Well, as Gregory Ashe often does, he took me down a dark and twisted path. And, of course, there are potential romantic attachments going on. Theo is being chased by his husband’s former police officer partner. I’m not a fan of Cart, but he’s handy with tools, which is great because the bad guys keep tearing up Theo’s house. Auggie has always portrayed himself as straight, fearful of losing followers. He’s hidden himself away for a long time and I wondered what’d happen if he was outed. Then there’s his roommate who is getting way too close for comfort. Where will that lead?
For those familiar with the Hazard and Somerset series, John-Henry Somerset makes an appearance in this book – well before he’s been reunited with the man he used to bully in high school. I love when books give you little glimpses into characters you know. This book is also set in 2013. I was in my late-thirties, so most of the music and pop culture references go over my head, but for someone who was paying attention to those things back then (regardless of their age) then it’s a fun stroll down memory lane.
Quick note – this book is very violent. In places I didn’t expect it. For me, the violence was both disturbing and necessary. Again – prof and student – you wouldn’t expect some of the things that happen. But then, as I’ve said, this is a Gregory Ashe. Expect the unexpected.
J.F. Harding narrated this great book and I’m so glad he did. He hits every note and just shines. I also want to say I loved how King Lear was interwoven into the story. Almost made me want to drag out my copy. Almost. I’m pretty busy these days with reviewing audiobooks, so I think I’ll stick to that.
Now, book 2 is already out in audio so I’m headed that way now!
9/10 Pots of Gold (90% Recommended) – Compares to 4.5/5 Stars
I’m a long-time Midwesterner. I’ve lived in Chicago, Bloomington (IN), and Saint Louis, my current home. Aside from reading and writing (which take up a lot of my time), I’m an educator.