Because our drive for this book came from the Emmy nominations and wins for the HBO limited series of the same name, we decided that this month we would read the novel and binge watch the show as a way to debrief! One of our members pointed out an ironic quote from the book that relates to several bookworms – “It didn’t take Celeste long to realize that this was going to be the sort of book club where the book was secondary to the proceedings. She felt mild disappointment. She’d been looking forward to talking about the book. She’d even embarrassingly, prepared for book club…marking up a few pages with Post-it notes and writing a few pithy comments in the margins” (Moriarty 263). The funny part is, that is what happened haha. Beginning at 6pm, we knocked out 3.5 episodes (we met on a Tuesday and we are all avid This Is Us fans so we had to stop at 9pm!).
Continue reading “Book Club: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty”
Title: Turtles All the Way Down
My rating: 5/5
Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.
Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.
Continue reading “Snap Review: Turtles All the Way Down by John Green”
Title: Without Merit
My rating: 4/5
Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes the only thing it deserves is forgiveness.
The Voss family is anything but normal. They live in a repurposed church, newly baptized Dollar Voss. The once cancer-stricken mother lives in the basement, the father is married to the mother’s former nurse, the little half-brother isn’t allowed to do or eat anything fun, and the eldest siblings are irritatingly perfect. Then, there’s Merit.
Merit Voss collects trophies she hasn’t earned and secrets her family forces her to keep. While browsing the local antiques shop for her next trophy, she finds Sagan. His wit and unapologetic idealism disarm and spark renewed life into her—until she discovers that he’s completely unavailable. Merit retreats deeper into herself, watching her family from the sidelines when she learns a secret that no trophy in the world can fix.
Fed up with the lies, Merit decides to shatter the happy family illusion that she’s never been a part of before leaving them behind for good. When her escape plan fails, Merit is forced to deal with the staggering consequences of telling the truth and losing the one boy she loves.
Continue reading “Snap Review: Without Merit by Colleen Hoover”
Title: The Little Paris Bookshop
My rating: 4/5
Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. Using his intuitive feel for the exact book a reader needs, Perdu mends broken hearts and souls. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself; he’s still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared. She left him with only a letter, which he has never opened.
After Perdu is finally tempted to read the letter, he hauls anchor and departs on a mission to the south of France, hoping to make peace with his loss and discover the end of the story. Joined by a bestselling but blocked author and a lovelorn Italian chef, Perdu travels along the country’s rivers, dispensing his wisdom and his books, showing that the literary world can take the human soul on a journey to heal itself.
Continue reading “Snap Review: The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George”
Title: True East
Author: Raymond Ahrens
Format: Print copy mailed by author in exchange for an honest review
My rating: 2/5
Katy Givens, thirty and brilliant, learns in a static-filled phone call that her husband Andrew is missing in the Amazon and possibly dead. Although still mourning the death of their infant son, Katy flies to Brazil in search of Andrew, discovering that the man she married has secrets. As the mysteries surrounding Andrew’s disappearance mount, so does the list of shadowy forces benefitting from the recent discovery of oil in the Amazon.
Katy’s field of genetic anthropology proves useful when accounts of the Unnamed Ones, a primitive and possibly pre-human tribe, are rumored to exist in the same valley as the oil reserves. Katy tracks Andrew through the jungle, deciphering riddles he left before disappearing. Along the way, she barters with a Jewish coin merchant, challenges chance with a fortune teller, and argues the merits of prayer with a Jesuit priest, before placing her faith with the indigenous Tadi.
Continue reading “Book Review: True East by Raymond Ahrens”