August 12, 2018

July 2018 Reads

July 49 Scribe Alyson Hagy
50 Us Against You Frederik Backman
51 What I Leave Behind Alison McGhee
52 Human Hours Catherine Barnett
53 Half Hazard Kristen Tracy
54 The Mars Room Rachel Kushner
55 Where The Crawdads Sing Delia Owens
56 Under My Skin Lisa Unger
57 So Long Gone Andre Dubus III
58 The Devil All The Time Donald Ray Pollack

As usual, lots of good books.  Here's a rundown of the books I recommend/love.

First, Us Against You, I've read all of Backman's novels, starting with A Man Called Ove.  They are all outstanding and this one is no exception.  If you haven't read Backman, what is wrong with you?  Start reading him.

Where the Crawdads Sing is hard to describe, but I loved it. "An exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming of age story, and a surprising" murder mystery. The quote is on the back cover of the ARC. I had a hard time putting this down, to do other things. The story was very engaging and beautifully written.

Under My Skin, a mystery with an ending that you'll never suspect. This is a very good read.

So Long Gone, Dubus renders this story of love, jealousy, guilt, and atonement in a voice that rings with authenticity and evokes the texture of working-class lives.  He's a great writer and I've loved all his books.

The Devil All the Time, stayed up past my bedtime finishing this. The writing is great but the characters are brutal, repellant, and horrifying. Not for the faint of heart. Read it, but you've been warned.
What are you reading?

July 14, 2018

June 2018 Reads

June 42 Even Dogs In the Wild Ian Rankin
43 Ohio Stephen Markley
44 Rainsong Sue Hubbard
45 The Martin Chronicles John Fried
46 American Journal Tracy K. Smith editor
47 Still Life With Two Dead 
Peacocks and a Girl Diane Seuss
48 Annie Freeman's Fabulous
Traveling Funeral Kris Radish

Even Dogs In the Wild is a  Scottish police procedural. I really enjoyed this, Rankin kept me guessing.

I think Ohio by debut author Stephen Markley is going to be an instant best-seller.  The book will be published in August, and you don't want to miss it.  "Markley’s novel is alternately disturbing and gorgeous, providing a broad view of the anxieties of a post-9/11 Middle America and the complexities of the humans who navigate them." ~ Publisher's Weekly.

I picked Rainsong to read because the title reminded me of Plainsong, one of my favorite books.  The story starts slow, but I really liked it.  It will be published in September.  Here's the blurb from the BN site, "It unfolds as a compelling tale of grief, art, and the fragile, quiet ways in which time and place can offer a measure of redemption."

And, I picked up The Martin Chronicles, because of Martian Chronicles!  Sometimes these things work out.  This is a moving debut that perfectly captures the intense emotion, humor, and earnestness of young adulthood as Marty navigates a series of life-changing firsts: first kiss, first enemy, first loss, and ultimately, his first awareness that the world is not as simple or safe a place as he had once imagined.  The book will be published in January 2019.

Don't you just love this title, Annie Freeman's Fabulous Traveling Funeral?  I'm not big on "chick-lit", but this story was great, and it does Thelma and Louise, one better. “Radish sings the praises of sisterhood by creating an enticing world of women helping women to become the empowered individuals they were meant to be.” —Booklist

What are you reading?

July 13, 2018

May 2018 Reads

or books.

May 33 Before We Were Yours Lisa Wingate
34 American Fire Monica Hess
35 The Rising Heather Graham/Jon Land
36 Midnight War of Mateo Martinez Robin Yardu
37 Mean Streets Jim Butcher
38 Before I Let Go Marieke Nijkamp
39 Woman In The Window A. J. Finn
40 County Line Bill Cameron
41 Anatomy of a Scandal Sarah Vaughan

Mays' reading started out with a bang.  Before We Were Yours, is good historical, well researched, fiction about a shameful chapter in American adoption. My heart broke a couple of times.

American Fire is in-depth reporting of an American crime. Arson is hard for me to understand and because the lead perpetrator wouldn't grant interviews, I still have questions. Hesse interviewed everyone she could, including the volunteer firefighters and crime scene investigators, plus victims and other affected residents. Very worth the read.

The Rising is a Terminator-like suspense story that has everything you would want in a science fiction fantasy…action, mystery, thrills and a storyline that will spur your imagination and give you hours of reading pleasure.  Jon Land was one of my husband's favorite authors, this is the reason I gave this book a try, and I'm so glad I did.  It's YA, but I'm an adult and loved it.

Midnight War of Mateo Martinez is a children's book, geared toward 7-10-year-olds. It's well written, a lot of fun, and involves best friends, little sisters, and talking skunks!

Woman in The Window has been on the bestseller list for months. I packed it for a 3-week trip, hoping that it'd be good. (Sometimes bestsellers are stinkers.) This is suspenseful and well written, I couldn't put it down. A great debut. I really recommend that you read it.

Contemporary sharp-edged noir doesn't get much better than County Line. This was a suspenseful read; another one that was hard to put down. I recommend it.

What are you reading?