on January 1st 1970
Fielding Bliss has never forgotten the summer of 1984: the year a heat wave scorched Breathed, Ohio. The year he became friends with the devil.
Sal seems to appear out of nowhere - a bruised and tattered thirteen-year-old boy claiming to be the devil himself answering an invitation. Fielding Bliss, the son of a local prosecutor, brings him home where he's welcomed into the Bliss family, assuming he's a runaway from a nearby farm town.
When word spreads that the devil has come to Breathed, not everyone is happy to welcome this self-proclaimed fallen angel. Murmurs follow him and tensions rise, along with the temperature as an unbearable heat wave rolls into town right along with him. As strange accidents start to occur, riled by the feverish heat, some in the town start to believe that Sal is exactly who he claims to be. While the Bliss family wrestle with their own personal demons, a fanatic drives the town to the brink of a catastrophe that will change this sleepy Ohio backwater forever.
First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros is a weekly meme hosted by Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea. Each week, participants share a paragraph (or two) from a book they are currently reading or are planning to read soon.
Today I’m going to share the first couple of paragraphs from Tiffany McDaniel’s The Summer that Melted Everything. This book has been on my TBR for a long time so when the author reached out to ask if I’d like to review it, I was thrilled and flattered and, of course, said YES! I started it last night but didn’t get very far as a trip to the basement for a bottle of wine resulted in my discovering that a valve on the boiler was leaking and things went downhill from there. I’m loving it so far, though, and am looking forward to getting back to it this afternoon. Without further ado:
“The heat came with the devil. It was the summer of 1984, and while the devil had been invited, the heat had not. It should’ve been expected though. Heat is, after all, the devil’s name, and when’s the last time you left home without yours?
It was a heat that didn’t just melt tangible things like ice, chocolate, Popsicles. It melted all the intangibles too. Fear, faith, anger, and those long-trusted templates of common sense. It melted lives as well, leaving futures to be slung with the dirt of a gravedigger’s shovel.”
What do you think? Would you continue reading?
I found this opening to feel very ominous and atmospheric and was immediately drawn in.