Whoa. Seriously, where does the time go because I swear yesterday was March’s Show Us Your Books Day, aka the best day of the month, now it’s already April’s turn. I must also confess that it surprised that I read only five books last month. It feels like I should have read more but apparently I merely thought about reading. Sometimes that happens, where I think I should read but decide to watch TV, snuggle with my cat or stare off into space and think about books instead. Yup, I’m an official #BookWeirdo
The Book I Loved
The book made me shout, “Woot! Woot!” like an annoying imbecile.
Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella
Book Description: Audrey suffers from anxiety but with the help of Dr. Sarah, her family and especially Linus, her brother’s gaming teammate, she’s on her way back to normal(ish).
Book Review: I’ve enjoyed several of Kinsella’s books and this one intrigued me because it actually dealt with a serious subject matter: anxiety and depression. Overall, it was another home run. I laughed, I cried and I wholeheartedly recommend the book. Audrey felt real, from how the disease crippled and paralyzed her at odd times to her euphoria at being “cooked” or fixed when she wasn’t. I also really, really appreciated that Kinsella never wrote Audrey as though she was romanticizing or mocking her mental illness, which unfortunately happens much too often.
To Read or Not To Read: You bet. It’s gotta a ton of heart, a sweet romance, a weird but loving family and an honest hero.
The Books I liked
These are the books I enjoyed overall, from most liked to liked.
Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney
Book Description: My name is Amber Reynolds. There are three things you should know about me:
1. I’m in a coma.
2. My husband doesn’t love me anymore.
3. Sometimes I lie.
Book Review: So … I screwed up. Bigly. At some point, I inadvertently skipped to the last page on my kindle and read it before realizing what had happened. My assumption is knowing the ending is why my brain revolted through the remainder of the story because it knew a truth that contradicted so much. And I had been really enjoying the little reveals of Amber’s lying. Ultimately, this is a well-plotted thriller (particularly since it is a debut novel) with solid twist(s) (maybe — I actually remain suspicious about some and I can’t decide if it’s because I might be right or still just confused! Also, I ain’t mad about this. At all.) and a worthy read for thriller/mystery lovers. Also, please do read and help me understand a few things because … still a little lost. 😀
To Read or Not To Read: Yup. But put your thinking cap when you do. Because as Amber states on the first page (and tells you in the title), sometimes, she lies.
Note: I received an arc from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. Sometimes I Lie is now available.
Macbeth by Jo Nesbo
Book Description: A corrupt police force struggles to neutralize a growing drug problem in a town with few heroes.
Book Review: William Shakespeare was required reading when I was in high school and I wasn’t a fan because … wait for it … I could never understand what he was rambling about … and here it comes … I wished he just wrote in plain English. 😀 And just think, people, I was an honor roll student! But eventually I acclimated to his style and Macbeth was his first work that I understood, so curiosity got the best of me when I learned Nesbo wrote a modern update of it. Now it’s been 25+ years since I read the original so the details are a bit murky but overall I enjoyed this. Macbeth is now a SWAT team leader and Lady (that’s her name now) owns a fancy, schmancy casino. And yup, spoiler alert: they go power hungry and crazy. The only part I really didn’t like was I didn’t remember Macbeth so easily sliding into power hungry mode. Seriously, Lady is like kill him and dude’s like, sure thing, babe. Okay, he didn’t say babe but … still.
To Read or Not To Read: Well, I stayed up past my bedtime to finish it, so yes. I also now feel like rereading the original again. 😀
Note: I received an arc from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. Macbeth is now available.
Girls Burn Brighter by Shobha Rao
Book Description: As girls, Poornima and Savitha have little opportunity in their poor village, although their friendship gives them hope until a terrible incident pulls them apart but that hope still burns strong within them.
Book Review: I don’t really have reading goals around the number of books I read, but one thing I am trying to do this year is read more books written by people of color. This book mainly takes place in India and Poornima and Savitha do not have easy lives. Being female, they are less valuable to their families because they require a marriage dowry; they are essentially a commodity. It’s not an easy story, sometimes quite bleak, but also demonstrates the strength of these women. The ending is a bit abrupt, although relatively positive.
To Read or Not To Read: Yes. This isn’t a book for when you’re seeking something light or sunny but a solid read that helped me better understand the plight of women in another culture and worth some uncomfortable feelings.
Note: I received an arc from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. Girls Burn Brighter is now available.
The One by John Marrs
Book Description: Imagine — take a simple DNA test and learn who your soulmate is, but sometimes your true love has secrets. Big secrets.
Book Review: I love the concept of the book — matched DNA that leads to your one, true love sounds intriguing and ripe for all kinds of tantalizing problems, which the book delivers. Unfortunately I felt as though we followed too many characters (five) and the individual stories of Mandy, Nick, Christopher, Ellie and Jade (less so with her) could each been an entire book. It’s still a good quick read though that touched upon some of the more murky sides of DNA love matches but shortchanged their stories with having to service five characters equally.
To Read or Not To Read: Yes. It’s a solid, pass-the-time book.
TL;DR — My Recommendations to You
So this was a good month of reading overall. Because I am greedy and not ashamed, I would have liked more love books but all the books I read last month were solid books that I recommend. Finding Audrey is one of those rare non-fantasy or dystopian YA books that I enjoy and a good fit for those who like lighter, more humorous YA books. Sometimes I Lie is fine choice for mystery/thriller lovers, although I strongly recommend that you do not accidentally read the last page until you are actually at the end of the book. Your brain might hurt otherwise! 😀 Macbeth is a good choice for those who enjoy updated classics or want to see Macbeth in the 70’s as a SWAT leader in a drug-infested Nordic town. The One is a fast, solid read and Girls Burn Brighter is an excellent choice for those who want to expand their reading horizon and explore other cultures.
To More Great Reads
Well, every month I claim to almost be caught up with NetGalley and here I am claiming it again. I get caught up, then add a book or ten. It’s possible I have an addiction; it’s possible I don’t really care either. 😀 As usual, I’m joining Jana and Steph for their amazing Show Us Your Books link-up. I can’t wait to see what everyone read last month!