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My reading pattern was very strange this month. I came out of the gate swinging and read 5 books in 1 week and then suddenly read nothing for 2 weeks. I’ve been pretty wiped out at the end of the day so I started to get sucked into TV watching before bed instead of reading. I noticed that not only was I not falling asleep but my sleep was very broken and I honestly missed reading!
So for the last week of February, I powered out…shut the TV off, went back to books before bed, slept so much better and read some fabulous books- mostly from my town library.
this is how it always is by Laurie Frankel has been on my TBR book cart for far too long. It’s about a little 5-year-old boy, Claude, who says when he grows up he wants to be a girl. His family encourages him to be who he wants to be but soon finds themselves wrapped in secrets…and secrets always come out. It was moving, gripping, heartbreaking and beautiful. I will recommend this to everyone I know. This book is a few years old but incredibly timely.
Hell of a Book by Jason Mott was the February pick for my online book club. I had not heard of it before but once I googled it, I found out this book has won every award out there. Mott brings to life a famous author out on tour, who may or may not be in conversation with an imaginary boy. It tackles police brutality and what it is like to be Black in America all mixed with humor and heartache and a deep sense of reality. This is a book best read slowly – or you will miss the true beauty of the message.
I picked up She Memes Well by Quinta Brunson at the library simply for the title. I had no idea what the book was about but being a meme addict, that title grabbed me! The author is a comedian with a long list of comedy shows under her belt. This memoir dives into her life as a young internet-loving girl to someone whose face went viral as a meme. The book is a fast, fun look at the moments in her life that made her into the actress, writer and producer she is today.
One Night on the Island by Josie Silver was one of my most anticipated books for this year but it fell a little short for me. Cleo, a single dating columnist, and Mack a newly divorced dad find themselves on this Irish Island booked at the same cortege. Neither wants to give up the space so they share it…one thing leads to another…but will it last once they go home? A lot of people have loved this book but for me it dragged. I am still confused about the title as well because they spent more than one night on the island. There did not seem to be a genuine spark between the two characters that made me want to root for them. I loved the author’s previous book so will give her another try with her next book. (Thank you Ballantine Books and NetGalley for this e-ARC)
No Land to Light on by Yara Zgheib was a recommendation by a couple of fellow book friends who I trust. I knew nothing about the book but the description grabbed me and I honestly could hardly put it down. Sama and Hadi are a young Syrian couple, and soon-to-be parents, living in America. Sama came to the states to attend Harvard and Hadi as a sponsored refuge. When Hadi’s father dies, he goes back to Syria for the services but on his return, he is stopped and detained by the executive order of (former) President Trump’s immigration ban of Muslim countries, which includes Syria. The stress of not knowing where Hadi is or how he will come back to America causes her to go into early labor and deliver her son and Hadi has to put everything on the line to try to get back to his family. I tore through this story all while trying to savor this beautiful writing and the deeply personal journey of these characters. I understand the hype…well deserved.
I had Who is Maud Dixon on my TBR for a while and it wasn’t until I saw it on the library shelf that I finally committed to reading it. It was a fun read- a little bit thriller and a little bit mystery. The main character Florence always thought she would rise to the top, but finds herself constantly fighting to get ahead. When an affair with her boss leads to a new opportunity to work with the secretive author Maud Dixon in Morocco, she jumps at the chance. But when she wakes up in a hospital after a car accident with no memory of what happens and everyone there is calling her Maud Dixon, she decides to run with this opportunity to be someone different. The pacing kept the story rolling and there were plenty of twists to keep me on my toes.
My last book, Seven Days in June by Tia Williams was another hyped book on the ‘gram and again, when I saw it on the library shelf, I grabbed it. FYI: This book had a lot of steam! Two writers, Eve (a single mom) and Shane (a public-shy author) dated 15 years ago and it ended abruptly with broken hearts all around. To work through it they have both been secretly writing about one another in their respective books. So when they run into each other on an author’s panel, sparks fly (combined with confusion, anger, resentment and heartbreak). For the next seven days, they try to figure out their new connection, what happened in the past and get answers to questions that never were quite resolved. A total second-chance love story that keeps you turning the page!
I already have another great stack set aside for March and I am anxious to dig in!