Bad Memories

Fiction - Mystery - General
244 Pages
Reviewed on 08/23/2016
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Born in Brooklyn and live in Florida. I write to express myself and to let others know what I have to say. I am going for my third degree at FSU. I have two other degrees. I also have appeared on local TV morning shows 3 times and radio 7 times.

I have a sequel coming out before the end of the year

    Book Review

Reviewed by Sarah Stuart for Readers' Favorite

Bad Memories by Douglas Sandler is John Miller’s story and his memories are of death on a cataclysmic scale. Working as a doctor in an asylum, he was held responsible for mistakes that resulted in the demise of many inmates. The story is told from John’s point of view, brilliantly narrated by Graham King, so the listener feels that John himself speaks. He opens in the present, working at a mind-numbingly boring job and living with a wife who regards him as a meal ticket. He accepts an invitation to spend a weekend fishing with Dr. Albert Smith, an ex-colleague. En route for Albert’s surgery he meets several strangers, who board the same train. When he arrives, he discovers Albert’s corpse. Suicide? Other murders force John to confront his memories, but can he survive the mental trauma and turn his life around?

Bad Memories by Douglas Sandler lends itself well to the medium of audio books. Within minutes, “John” tells of his boring job, which benefits his carping wife, so vividly that I wondered if he was about to murder her! John’s "rebellion" is joining a friend, Albert, on a weekend fishing trip. His journey, scattered with odd happenings and mysterious strangers, ends when he finds Albert’s corpse, apparently a case of suicide. John has a problem: bad memories of patients who died due to incorrect medication when he was a doctor but, unless he acts, Arthur’s death will go unavenged. Bad Memories is packed with characters who come alive, and plotted with dozens of twists: a thrilling mystery that hooks the listener and intrigues to the end, and what an end!

Janelle Fila

John Miller has a haunting past. While a doctor at the Allendale Asylum, three people died when medicated with the wrong dosage. That past is starting to catch up with John Miller. His friend and former colleague at the asylum, Albert Smith, is murdered when the two go fishing to catch up on old times. When another man is murdered shortly after his friend, Miller begins to see a new pattern that might shed light on the mystery of his old life.

I really liked the mystery element of Bad Memories by Douglas Sandler. There is something intriguing about reading a mystery and trying to follow along and solve the mystery along with the main character. I thought the author summed up what a mystery is very well when he said that Miller wanted to solve the mystery "for the knowledge that he could take a problem in hand and master it." I think that is why a lot of people read mysteries and want to be able to understand the solution, because they want to master the problem. I thought this was very well said and seemed to reflect the attitude of the book nicely. The story really stayed true to this theme.

I also liked the information that we could gleam from the characters' dialogue. At one point the author writes: "The man’s statement told Miller more about Sally than anything she had said or expressed in her face." I think that's what good dialogue does. It gives the reader information within the text that shows the reader how the characters feel without telling the reader how the characters feel. This is a hard concept for a lot of writers, so when it is done well it should be praised. I think there are good examples of that in this text and that helps carry the story forward. The reader feels like they are actually listening to a conversation, not just reading a book.