4 stars · fiction

Me Before You reads exactly like the movie

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Me Before You

Me Before You #1

author : jojo moyes

pages : [hardcover] 369

favorite character : louisa

memorable quote :

You only get one life. It’s actually your duty to live it as fully as possible.

summary :

They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose . . .

Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.

Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.

A Love Story for this generation and perfect for fans of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, Me Before You brings to life two people who couldn’t have less in common—a heartbreakingly romantic novel that asks, What do you do when making the person you love happy also means breaking your own heart?

review :

Me Before You was an interesting read for me because I watched the movie first. I know, I know, that’s an extreme sin to some people. But I honestly can’t remember the last time I did that, and then read the novel afterward. Usually when I know that it’s coming, I take the time to read the book long before I get to the theater. Me Before You was a little different because I knew nothing about it before I went to see it. I’d literally only seen the posters for it, knew I loved the lead actor and actress, and it was what my friends wanted to do for the day. I thought it would be a nice, light-hearted romantic comedy.

Me Before You is something . . . other. I’m sure most people know what they’re getting themselves into, but when the “event” happens two minutes into the film, I grabbed my friend and demanded to know what they’d dragged me into. And then sat back for the rest of the ride.

Well, the novel reads exactly like the film. There was a few months’ gap between watching it and reading the book, so there may be some pieces that I’m missing. Altogether, apart from a few chapters of the book that are told in other characters’ perspectives, everything else is exactly like the movie. Which could mean either that the film was a great adaptation and exactly what readers who want every moment of the book included are looking for, or that the writing needed a little something extra. I think both are true. Both, because the plot does translate so well to screen, and I think part of that is because Moyes doesn’t provide us with anything superfluous. No real subplots that would need to be cut from a movie script. No minor characters that only pop in for a chapter or two.

It’s the kind of writing that I know appeals to a lot of people–and it shows, from the popularity of the book. It’s also the kind of troublesome book that is very entertaining, but doesn’t provide much meat for the mind, if you know what I’m getting at. The writing isn’t clunky, or awkward, and manages to make a plot that could have been predictable, entertaining and endearing. But it isn’t exceptional. It does the job, telling the story, without leaving behind much by way of style.

I think it’s kind of like a Nicolas Sparks novel (or at least like several I’ve read by him until they all, I realized, were basically the same), riding on peoples’ emotions for the tragedy of it all. And it works! I enjoyed it. Do I see myself reading the sequel? Probably not, because I don’t really see the necessity of there being a sequel. Would I read another book by Moyes? Maybe, but also a probably not because the back of my book included a few summaries of other novels she’s written and they don’t seem like my kind of book.

Did I enjoy Me Before You? Yes. Would I recommend it? Definitely, for a nice and easy read. But watching the movie was easily just as enjoyable.

4/5 stars

2 stars · adult · mystery

Baby Doll by Hollie Overton: should I have DNF’d?

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Baby Doll

author : hollie overton

pages : [hardcover] 281

summary :

For fans of Gone Girl and Girl on the Train, Baby Doll is the most tense thriller you will read this year.

Held captive for eight years, Lily has grown from a teenager to an adult in a small basement prison. Her daughter Sky has been a captive her whole life. But one day their captor leaves the deadbolt unlocked.

This is what happens next…

…to her twin sister, to her mother, to her daughter…and to her captor.

review :

I reeeeeally wanted to love this book. I started it and the concept was really interesting, the characters were gripping, and I was invested in the story. Baby Doll begins with Lily trying to escape from where she’s been held captive for the past eight years, tormented and raising a child with her captor. But this is just the beginning for her.

Baby Doll  . . . tried. I’m not sure at what point I realized that the writing was just terribly not for me. Maybe when it was the pages and pages of whenever Abby, Lily’s twin, would appear and all we would hear about her was that she was “so fat” (though at one point they said she’d put on twenty pounds which, okay, would make a difference, but they harped on it over and over). Abby had real psychological problems that were all hidden behind these vain ramblings. It wasn’t as if the author was trying to keep a little mystery for us to piece together what exactly has been happening to Abby. There is so much telling and not showing, it’s ridiculous.

Things started going downhill pretty quickly. The dialogue was very stilted, the scenarios that came up didn’t seem very realistic. Random things would come out of nowhere–the kind of stuff that could tear families apart or cause real devastation–and be mentioned for only a few pages and then never discussed ever again.

Rick, the captor . . . He was suitably crazy. Because the book rotates between several different POVs, at some points we were able to actually get inside of his head. But during the most important moments of the book, that I won’t spoil in case you want to read it, we get nothing from him. And then it’s over, wrapped up way too neatly in way too few pages.

I was really frustrated with Baby Doll because I started out thinking that I was going to love it. I ended it pretty much rushing through the pages so I could move on to another book instead.

2/5 stars

 

5 stars · adult · fiction

I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh WAS INSANE

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I Let You Go

author : clare mackintosh

pages : [hardcover] 369

favorite character : patrick

summary :

The next blockbuster thriller for those who loved The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl...a novel with “an astonishing intensity that drags you in and never—ever—lets you go.” (Daily Mail, UK)
 
On a rainy afternoon, a mother’s life is shattered as her son slips from her grip and runs into the street . . .

I Let You Go follows Jenna Gray as she moves to a ramshackle cottage on the remote Welsh coast, trying to escape the memory of the car accident that plays again and again in her mind and desperate to heal from the loss of her child and the rest of her painful past.

At the same time, the novel tracks the pair of Bristol police investigators trying to get to the bottom of this hit-and-run. As they chase down one hopeless lead after another, they find themselves as drawn to each other as they are to the frustrating, twist-filled case before them.

review :

I received this book as my May Book of the Month from the Book of the Month Club (yes, I’m way behind in my reading, but it’s in no way a reflection of how amazing this book is).

I picked this book because it looked like a very emotional thriller or mystery. I knew that it involved the accidental death of a child, who was killed in a hit-and-run accident in a rainstorm. What I didn’t know was how many other layers this book would have or how devastatingly beautiful it would be. There are so many clever twists in this book that I couldn’t hope to describe without giving away; you’ll just need to read it for yourself. There are things that you’ll never see coming, even in what seems like a simple case like this.

This book follows several years as the case is being investigated. It tracks Jenna, who has isolated herself after the accident in hopes that no one from her past will find her and that she can begin to forget. It also focuses on the detective who leads the case, which is cold almost as soon as it begins. Through the years, he and his rookie partner are convinced that there is more to this story, that more can still be done, so they gradually begin to undercover clues even years after the incident. Even when everyone else, including the mother of the killed boy, has given up hope that the crime will ever be solved.

It was gruesome, terrifying, and all too realistic, but I loved it. Another voice enters the book about halfway through and it was actually so terrifying that I had trouble falling asleep after reading those chapters. Because it felt too real. The author really has a gift, not only in crafting the story but truly finding the voices of her characters. While the chapters about the police investigation weren’t my favorite, it held a completely different tone and style from Jenna’s chapters, which were completely different from this third voice’s. Switching between them didn’t feel jarring at all because you know immediately who and what you’re reading about. I can’t wait to read more by Clare Mackintosh. I’m sure that whatever else she writes, I’ll love it.

I can’t emphasize how much I love this book–and it’s completely different from most things I’ve read. I don’t think I could compare this accurately to anything because it’s just so special. Go out and get a copy yourself!

5/5 stars

 

5 stars · Fantasy · fiction · paranormal · young adult

Boo by Neil Smith will definitely make you cry

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Boo

author : neil smith

pages : [paperback] 310

favorite character : boo

summary :

When Oliver “Boo” Dalrymple wakes up in heaven, the eighth-grade science geek thinks he died of a heart defect at his school. But soon after arriving in this hereafter reserved for dead thirteen-year-olds, Boo discovers he’s a ‘gommer’, a kid who was murdered. What’s more, his killer may also be in heaven. With help from the volatile Johnny, a classmate killed at the same school, Boo sets out to track down the mysterious Gunboy who cut short both their lives.

In a heartrending story written to his beloved parents, the odd but endearing Boo relates his astonishing heavenly adventures as he tests the limits of friendship, learns about forgiveness and, finally, makes peace with the boy he once was and the boy he can now be.

review :

I can’t remember when this book first landed on my TBR pile. It’s been on my list for months, at least, if not since it was first released almost exactly a year ago. Finally I was able to get my hands onto a copy of it. I checked this book out of the library but, to be honest, I wish that I’d bought it. I feel like this is one of those books I need to read again over the years.

Boo  hooked me in immediately. I don’t know why unique books about the afterlife (Everlost and Elsewhere are two that immediately come to mind) constantly fascinate me. Maybe because even though each religion has their own idea of what comes after death, even individuals within that certain religion can have wildly different conceptions of what the afterlife exactly is like. Although I really hope that Smith’s version isn’t so true, because if I’d died at thirteen and ended up stuck in a town filled with other thirteen year olds, that’d have been miserable. Middle schoolers are terrible–well, for the most part–and Boo kind of shows that, alongside showing how even thirteen year olds can be mature if they’re forced to remain thirteen for several decades.

I loved how easily I could immerse myself in the world. Boo has his quirks, so he immediately finds a group of people who are able to love him in spite of it, people who may have their own insecurities about themselves. It’s never established whether or not Boo possibly had some form of autism and I like how it is just implied that he is different, and lonely, and incredibly smart (maybe too smart, sometimes). Boo likes to look at everything from a scientific point of view, has trouble connecting socially, and struggles with emotions. But he’s a great friend, very observant, and immediately tries to understand things about the afterlife that would have remained incomprehensible to the less scientifically inclined.

Because it was just so interesting to see his world, I read this book in about a day and a half. I just couldn’t stop reading because I needed to know what was going to happen next. There was so much mystery surrounding Boo’s and Johnny’s deaths, because most of the afterlife’s residents don’t remember much about how they died in order to protect their own happiness. I won’t go into much detail because I don’t want to spoil it, but throughout the book you’ll definitely cry. But it is so worth it.

I’m definitely going to be recommending this book. I’ll probably be buying a copy for myself, eventually. It was so amazing, lasting, and touching that I just can’t resist.

5/5 stars

 

4 stars · adult · fiction · history · Uncategorized

Flight of Dreams by Ariel Lawhon

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Flight of Dreams

author : ariel lawhon

pages : [hardcover] 336

favorite character : werner franz

summary :

On the evening of May 3rd, 1937, ninety-seven people board the Hindenburg for its final, doomed flight to Lakehurst, New Jersey. Among them are a frightened stewardess who is not what she seems; the steadfast navigator determined to win her heart; a naive cabin boy eager to earn a permanent spot on the world’s largest airship; an impetuous journalist who has been blacklisted in her native Germany; and an enigmatic American businessman with a score to settle. Over the course of three hazy, champagne-soaked days their lies, fears, agendas, and hopes for the future are revealed.

Flight of Dreams is a fiercely intimate portrait of the real people on board the last flight of the Hindenburg. Behind them is the gathering storm in Europe and before them is looming disaster. But for the moment they float over the Atlantic, unaware of the inexorable, tragic fate that awaits them.

Brilliantly exploring one of the most enduring mysteries of the twentieth century, Flight of Dreams is that rare novel with spellbinding plotting that keeps you guessing till the last page and breathtaking emotional intensity that stays with you long after.

review :

Flight of Dreams is the exact book you need to read if you’ve ever been vaguely interested about the Hindenburg. Better yet, if you’ve never heard of it, you’ve going to want to anxiously research everything you can find about the explosion after you finish this novel because the historical context is just so interesting.

I received this book as my Book of the Month choice for April and I’m glad that this was the selection I made. For a book slimmer than I’d expected, there was so much detail and intrigue packed into the pages. I think the size was perfect because while it never skimmed over important details or character traits, the plot never dragged either. And the chapter headers, which slowly count down to the Hindenburg’s inevitable explosive fate, are completely ominous.

The characters were hard for me to like and enjoy, at first. It seemed like everyone was either cranky or trying to stab someone in the back (literally or figuratively, depending on the character) but I like how it was a slower process for me to piece together their pasts and motivations. Some, like the American, remained mostly a dangerous mystery. Some, like Emilie, I grew to love. And some, like cabin boy Werner, I really rooted for. Everyone knows what it is like to start out at a job where you need to do everyone else’s job and get none of the credit. But he’s so adventurous, a hard worker, and, okay, he was kind of adorable to read about.

Just as some of the characters were purposefully spreading rumors about each other to make them seem suspicious, there were several characters who were shady enough, and details that just didn’t add up, that I wasn’t really certain of what would happen until the end. I love that I wasn’t able to predict the ending, even though obviously with all of the historical detail to this some events needed to remain the same.

This book is a great blend of fact with fiction. I’m the kind of person who always reads the author’s notes at the end of a book and I’m so glad that I did that, here. Tiny details that I never would have guessed were real, characters that actually existed, and tragedy that truly struck–that’s the kind of thing that keeps you interested in the events. I’m invested in this story, in these personalities that were created to fictionalize and somehow come up with a meaning behind a great tragedy. And I loved it.

4/5 stars

 

4 stars · adult · series

Remembrance by Meg Cabot continues one of my favorite series

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Remembrance

The Mediator #7

author : meg cabot

pages : [paperback] 388

favorite character : jesse

summary :

Fifteen years after the release of the first Mediator novel, #1 New York Times bestselling author Meg Cabot returns with a deliciously sexy new entry to a fan-favorite series. Suze Simon—all grown up and engaged to her once-ghostly soulmate—faces a vengeful spirit and an old enemy bent on ending Suze’s wedded bliss before it begins.

You can take the boy out of the darkness.

But you can’t take the darkness out of the boy.

All Susannah Simon wants is to make a good impression at her first job since graduating from college (and since becoming engaged to Dr. Jesse de Silva).

But when she’s hired as a guidance counselor at her alma mater, she stumbles across a decade-old murder, and soon ancient history isn’t all that’s coming back to haunt her. Old ghosts as well as new ones are coming out of the woodwork, some to test her, some to vex her, and it isn’t only because she’s a mediator, gifted with second sight.

From a sophomore haunted by the murderous specter of a child, to ghosts of a very different kind—including Paul Slater, Suze’s ex, who shows up to make a bargain Suze is certain must have come from the Devil himself—Suze isn’t sure she’ll make it through the semester, let alone to her wedding night.

Suze is used to striking first and asking questions later. But what happens when ghosts from her past—including one she found nearly impossible to resist—strike first?

What happens when old ghosts come back to haunt you?

If you’re a mediator, you might have to kick a little ass.

review :

I absolutely loved The Mediator series when I first started reading it. I remember picking up the first book back when I was in seventh grade and loving it so, so much. It wasn’t until a few years later that I actually realized that there were more books in the series and struggled to find them available at Barnes & Noble (because this was before the days when I could just go online and pick out whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted). I was so pumped when I heard that Meg Cabot was continuing the series, this time with some adult novels. Now that I’m nearly out of college (!!), it’s like I’ve grown up with Suze and Jesse.

Unfortunately, I feel like maybe I personally put too many expectations on this book. For starters, it was longer than the other books were, maybe because it’s an adult novel. That meant that in places the plot felt really drawn out and I wasn’t even certain of where it was going because there were so many little side-plots happening. Of course, favorite characters kept popping up throughout the book, and I loved seeing them again. Cabot also kept the same tone and writing style in this book that I loved so much in the original Mediator books.

Some things were a little problematic for me. For instance, Suze is desperate to be ‘together’ with Jesse, officially, because they’re engaged and know they’re soulmates. Literally every time she sees him, she goes off on a tangent about how he won’t let them sleep together yet. I mean, let the guy have a break, Suze. He obviously adores you, has saved your life countless times, and is keeping himself away from you for religious reasons.

Then there was the whole thing about Paul Slater coming back when I hoped he’d have gotten himself locked up in prison sometime between the ending of the young adult books and the start of this one. You’d think those extra years of experience would have taught Suze not to keep secrets about Paul from others but, apparently, she can’t help but fall back on those old tricks. Paul was as disgusting a villain as usual, so . . . I’m really hoping Suze will be able to help out and/or watch his life be destroyed at some point.

Still, it was nice to have the gang back together again. Suze is ready to kick ghostly and human butt. The little moments of tense action that surround her really reminded me of the other books, which I thought was a nice touch.

I still really enjoyed this book, despite building up my expectations too much. I’d really recommend them–but read the other books first!

4/5 stars

3 stars · fiction

The Wonder of All Things by Jason Mott

The Wonder of All Things

author : jason mott

pages : [hardcover] 304

favorite characters : ava & wash

summary :

From critically acclaimed and New York Times bestselling author Jason Mott comes a spellbinding tale of love, sacrifice and the power of miracles.

On an ordinary day, at an air show like that in any small town across the country, a plane crashes into a crowd of spectators, killing and injuring dozens. But when the dust clears, a thirteen-year-old girl named Ava is found huddled beneath a pocket of rubble with her best friend, Wash. He is injured and bleeding, and when Ava places her hands over him, his wounds miraculously disappear. Ava has a unique gift: she can heal others of their physical ailments. Until the air show tragedy, her gift was a secret. But now the whole world knows, and suddenly Ava is thrust into the spotlight. People from all over the globe begin flocking to her small town, looking for healing and eager to glimpse the wonder of a miracle. But Ava’s unusual ability comes at a great cost, her own health, and as she grows weaker with each healing, Ava begins searching for an escape. Wash agrees to help Ava, but little does she know he has his own secret he’s been harboring, and soon Ava finds herself having to decide just how much she’s willing to sacrifice in order to save the one she loves most.

review :

I was fortunate enough to be approved to read this book on NetGalley a long time ago and finally got around to reading this one. I realized after requesting it, because it sounded incredibly interesting, that the author–Jason Mott–also wrote the novel The Returned. That book was turned into a TV series and, I have to admit, wasn’t a great read for me, so I was wary going into this one.

In the end, I did like it a lot more. The Returned bothered me mostly because I failed to connect with the writing style. The Wonder of All Things didn’t give me such problems. I loved the choppy way the story was told because the multiple perspectives added suspense, increased the aura of mystery, and gave a broader view of how the world reacted after Ava helped Wash.

Ava and Wash’s relationship was one of my favorite aspects of the novel. In the murk of political talks, philosophical hypotheses, and crazy people trying to get to Ava, their childhood friendship was so incredibly normal and sweet. They’re best friends and clearly made for each other. I loved seeing how they so fiercely tried to protect one another while not thinking of themselves. For thirteen year olds, they’re incredibly unselfish.

What didn’t captivate me about the book was the lack of a conclusion. It felt like the novel was building up to something, carefully setting up the pieces of a puzzle involving Ava’s mother and the glimpses we get of her through Ava’s memories. Many characters have their own tiny plots that never see a resolution. The end of the book, while enjoyable, was less than satisfying when set in combination with all of the other things we don’t get to find out about these characters.

I do think that I’ll pick up Jason Mott’s next novel, whenever it comes out and whatever it might be. I have to admit that he’s a skilled writer, though I’ve yet to try one of his books that I’ve really loved!

2 stars · fiction

A Pinch of Ooh La La by Renee Swindle

 

A Pinch of Ooh La La

Author : renee swindle

pages : [paperback] 336

favorite character : bendrix &

summary :

To get to happily ever after, sometimes you need to start from scratch….

Abbey Ross, who runs her own bakery in Oakland, California, is known for her visually stunning wedding cakes. But lately, Abbey’s own love life has become stale. According to her best friend, Bendrix, Abbey’s not the spontaneous young woman she was when they were teenagers listening to the Cure and creating attention-grabbing graffiti. Of course, her failed relationship with a womanizing art forger might have something to do with that. Nevertheless, it’s time for Abbey to step out of the kitchen—and her comfort zone—and Bendrix has even handpicked a man for her to date.

Samuel Howard is everything Abbey’s dreamed of: handsome, successful, and looking to raise a family. But a creamy icing might be needed to hide a problem or two. When Samuel complains about disrespect for the institution of marriage, Abbey’s reminded of her nontraditional family, with thirteen children from various mothers. And when Samuel rails about kids having kids, Abbey thinks of her twenty-year-old sister who’s recently revealed her pregnancy.

Soon Abbey is facing one disaster after another and struggling to make sense of it all. Her search for love has led her down a bitter path, but with the help of her unique family and unwavering friends, she just might find the ooh la la that makes life sweet.

review :

A Pinch of Ooh La La has good ideas, yet doesn’t execute them well. I went into the book thinking it’d be a cutesy story about Abbey’s search for love as well as finding herself. Unfortunately I was disappointed with how this book played out.

Abbey is nearing forty and sees her chance to be a mother ticking away as time goes on. There’s no harm in her worry because I think that she’d be a wonderful mother; seeing the way she interacted with her younger siblings as well as nieces and nephews only confirmed that. But she’s much too eager to find a man to ‘complete’ her life, especially when she’s doing very well on her own and has had terrible experiences with men in the past. Enter online dating (as it always happens in novels, she’s forced into it by her friends; I’ve never seen a story where online dating is the woman’s idea) and finally Samuel. He’s gorgeous, successful, and is quite nice to her. Unfortunately, as soon as Abbey meets him in the book, that’s when the plot begins to get awkward. She goes on a few dates with him and all of a sudden the novel skips ahead nine months. Then it starts skipping years. When I picked up this book I never imagined that the plot was going to cover such an enormous time span! It felt too forced and I couldn’t grasp how characters were developing when we weren’t given a chance to see them.

I also didn’t enjoy how predictable this novel was. While I really did like Abbey’s character, I didn’t understand some of the things that she put up with. She had such a strong family preaching great values to her, even if they were an unconventional family, that I can’t fathom some of her decisions. I’m not going to spoil anything, but during the novel I knew that I’d be extremely mad if it didn’t end the way that I was thinking it should. Some of the relationships in this book just aren’t healthy and it’s frustrating when characters, through no explanation, deal with insulting circumstances without a fight.

While I do think that so much could have been done with this book, I’m not sure that others will like it more than I did. Perhaps people who are older, closer to Abbey’s age, might enjoy reading such a novel because it does end with a good message. I particularly appreciated that. Yet for now, I think I’d say to skip this book.

3/5 stars

4 stars · fiction

The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse by Louise Erdrich

 

The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse

author : louise erdrich

pages : [paperback] 384

memorable quote To love another another human in all of her splendor and imperfect perfection , it is a magnificent task…tremendous and foolish and human.

favorite character : nanapush

summary :

For more than a half century, Father Damien Modeste has served his beloved people, the Ojibwe, on the remote reservation of Little No Horse. Now, nearing the end of his life, Father Damien dreads the discovery of his physical identity, for he is a woman who has lived as a man. To complicate his fears, his quiet life changes when a troubled colleague comes to the reservation to investigate the life of the perplexing, difficult, possibly false saint Sister Leopolda. Father Damien alone knows the strange truth of Sister Leopolda’s piety and is faced with the most difficult decision of his life: Should he reveal all he knows and risk everything? Or should he manufacture a protective history though he believes Leopolda’s wonder-working is motivated by evil?

review :

I had to read Louise Erdrich’s novel for one of my college courses and I’m very glad that it was assigned. I typically don’t end up enjoying the novels that I need to read for school; usually I don’t have the book to fault for this but time constraints in which I need to hurry through the novel or bad professors could make me dislike the book. Luckily I have a great professor for this course and Erdrich’s powerful novel withstands even the hastiest reading. Actually, the material is so well-written and dense that it’s impossible to skim through this book without missing all of the important (and interesting!) aspects of the novel.

I haven’t read many books set on Native American reservations; luckily we had a class presentation that provided us with more information on the Ojibwe but I think that anyone reading the novel could find out a bit more with a quick google search. Just looking up the background of these people, understanding what the characters have come from and what they’re striving toward, will hope you connect more fully with the novel if you find the prose to be too intense for your liking.

I couldn’t imagine this tale told in any other way. Through Father Damien’s story, narrated to a fellow priest, the reader explores gender roles, lost cultures, religious complications, and the significance of truth. It’s fascinating to see how the characters develop their attitudes throughout the novel. Father Damien is over one hundred years old and we’re able to see him from around the 1920s to the 1990s. That leaves a lot of room for change and a lot of lessons to be taught through his experiences.

Anyone looking to explore concepts of gender, race, and religion can look at this book; anyone simply searching for a thought-provoking narrative should pick this up. I’d certainly save it for when you have enough time to significantly ponder the text and fully consider every aspect of the novel. Not everything can be taken at its surface appearance.

I really enjoyed reading this book and it’s something that I might read again. I’d definitely recommend this!

4/5 stars

4 stars · fiction

Landline by Rainbow Rowell

 

Landline

author : rainbow rowell [also wrote eleanor & park]

pages : [hardcover] 310

memorable quote I love you more than I hate everything else.

favorite character : georgie

summary :

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems beside the point now.

Maybe that was always beside the point.

Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her.

When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything.

That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . .

Is that what she’s supposed to do?

Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

review :

Reading one of Rainbow Rowell’s adult novels is a completely different experience from her young adult, though it’s a lovely read all the same. Her characters are just brilliant and while her plots are contemporary and may take a while to progress, the writing is interesting and constructed in such a way that I’m still interested even if not much is happening.

I’d like to start off talking about the characters. None of Rowell’s characters are perfect and I think that’s what makes them so realistic and relatable. They aren’t unreachable creatures; instead they’re human like we are and might easily be your next door neighbor or your best friend. Of course little quirks and things are exaggerated to keep things interesting throughout the novel; sometimes a character’s defining traits can be used to nudge the plot along.

While I enjoyed reading about Georgie, and saw her as a realistic character, I didn’t really relate to her life. I’m not an adult; I’ve never been married, had kids, or dealt with any of the decisions Georgie’s trying to make throughout the book. But I’ve often been afraid when I think of my own career ambitions as well as what I’m going to do if I want to have a family. Women have it hard and Georgie wants to have it all. Unfortunately it’s difficult to find the perfect balance between what she’s doing and what needs to be done. And then a magic telephone is thrown in.

That was undoubtedly the most interesting part of the book and I wish there was more centered around it. That’s the only unusual, unnatural aspect of the otherwise contemporary read. Is Georgie simply hallucinating the conversations? Maybe, but I like to think that her phone really is connecting to the past!

I’d recommend this book to other people but it’s not one of my favorite books. I really enjoyed it and think that others will love it yet I’m not sure if I’d reread it. You should give it a shot!

4/5 stars