What I'm Reading

Book Review- Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Fairest by Marissa Meyer is bridge book in the Lunar Chronicles Series. As book number 3 1/2, it’s a look into the life of the main villain, Levana. It’s meant to have you see life from her perspective, to help you understand how she got to be as evil as she is. And the book does this wonderfully.

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We get a good sense of the trauma she went through as a young child and how that affected her. We see how terribly her older sister treated her, and how that taints her outlook on many things, including her niece.

We watch as she falls in love, and forces him to fall in love with her. We learn how Winter becomes her step-daughter and see the awkwardness of her marriage.

We really do learn a lot about Levana. I felt a bit more empathy toward her, but that’s really not what this book is about. She doesn’t make good, rational decisions. You aren’t meant to like her more. You’re just meant to understand her evil, her hatred, her cold heart.

This entire series is so well done. The new lens through which to look at fairy tales in this apocalyptic, science fiction way is brilliant. I love fairy tales, but even I was tired of them being re-imagined, however something about this telling, how you can recognize the fairy tales but it doesn’t feel like a fairy tale at all, really feels fresh. And this bridge book from the Evil Queen’s perspective is a nice addition to the series.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again many many times: Go read this series. You won’t regret it.

What I'm Reading

Currently Reading- The Life She Was Given

I started The Life She Was Given by Ellen Marie Wiseman this weekend, and so far it is a beautifully written, historical fiction story. I’m loving the characters (or in some cases, loving to hate them) and the setting is so well done. I was so instantaneously invested in these characters, I can’t wait to see where the story takes them! Check back soon for a full review.

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What I'm Reading

Book Review- A Fall of Marigolds

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If you love a book that makes you cry, that has real emotions, this needs to be on your to-read list, and preferably at the top of it. A Fall of Marigolds by Susan Meissner is a beautifully written story full of heart and strong characters.

The book is set in two time periods, 1911 on Ellis Island (mostly) and 2011 still in NYC. With major devastation in both of the main characters lives, you watch as they learn that not everything can be explained, somethings are no one’s fault. The love stories here are beautiful. The characters feel incredibly real.

And maybe it’s because I lived just outside of NYC on 9/11/2001. Maybe it’s because I remember not hearing from my father, who worked in the city, all day. I remember the heartache and the families torn apart. That part of this story feels incredibly real, sometimes too much so, as we watch the characters in 2011 flash back to the tragedy of  9/11.

I can’t say a lot without ruining the story because it takes so many unexpected turns, but if you love historical fiction, this is for you. If you love a good love story, this if for you. If you love watching characters climb out of despair and find themselves, this if for you. If you have any attachment to the tragedy of 9/11 in NYC, this is for you. But be warned, you may need tissues.

What I'm Reading

My to-read list- ever growing

This poor list is just going to keep growing over the next few weeks because we’re moving which means no time to read! But here’s the current list.

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Not much different than last week, but I finally got my hands on The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. I have heard nothing but good things about it and it’s been checked out of the library for the last year basically. Between book clubs and people loving it, it hasn’t been on the shelf long enough for me to grab. And as we speak there are three people on the wait list for it after I return it which means it’s either moving up in priority or I’m returning it and dreaming of reading it some day soon…

 

Have you read The Nightingale? Did you love it?

What I'm Reading

What I’m Reading- A Fall of Marigolds

This week I’ve finally cracked open A Fall of Marigolds by Susan Meissner. FINALLY!

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I’m not even 20 pages in yet (I may have fallen asleep last night when I started the book…) but it’s so good! I can already tell I’m going to love it. And so Meissner climbs up my list of favorite authors. At the moment she’s in the top 10… we’ll see if she can get any higher. I bet she will =)

What I'm Reading

Book Review- Lockdown by Laurie R. King

I’ve never read anything by Laurie R. King before and I’ve heard from a number of people that her series is really good, so I figured I’d try this new standalone novel to see if I like her writing.

Her writing isn’t bad, but the structure of this book drove me crazy. CRAZY! The chapters are usually 1-3 pages long, with just a few longer ones. We follow maybe a dozen different characters.

Each character’s story is intriguing. In fact, each character could easily have their own book. But instead, King threw them all together, rather roughly, into this one. The over all premise of catastrophe at a school is good. I loved Jodi Picoult’s Nineteen Minutes and wanted this to be similar.  I’m not really sure what I got but it was not Nineteen Minutes.

Again, I felt like I was reading 10 different books and it took me almost 200 pages to keep the characters straight because we never see them longer than a page or two at a given time. But once I could keep them straight I was invested in each and every story.

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Unfortunately, I only got a resolution for one story line, and even that wasn’t as strong of a resolution as I would have liked. But most of the characters were just… left. We saw them, we had questions, and then it was over.

The end did surprise me. The “bad guy” was a shock. What I expected the catastrophe to be was not what happened at all. So that was amazing!

But I want closure for these characters! I read the author’s acknowledgement at the end of the novel and she says that this book started as a number of short stories. Which makes a lot of sense because for most of the book you’re wondering “why am I getting all these stories? How do they fit together?” And even having finished the book, I’m not sure they do. Other than all these stories weave together a good school story. Because you never really know what the person sitting next to you is going through.

So read it, or don’t. If you can wade through 250+ pages to get the good 100 or so pages at the end then give it a try. If you have too many other things to read, don’t move this up your priority list. Unless you love character studies. Then this might be just the thing for you.

What I'm Reading

What I’m Reading This Week

This week I’m working on two books. One for fun and one for my business.

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Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk is amazing. I’m learning so much about how different social media platforms work for your business. The examples he provides are wonderful and he makes me laugh out loud.

Lockdown is kind of a struggle. I want to like it. I have a feeling that once everything comes together it’s going to blow my mind. But getting there… I feel like I’m reading 4 different books: one about a boy who I think is planning a school shooting, one about a gang, one about how a couple met 30 years ago in Australia, and one about a missing girl. When these plot lines come together (which they better, or I might throw the book out the window) the story is going to be amazing. But I’m more than 100 pages in and I have no idea how they’re going to come together… in fact they don’t feel like they will… but how can that possibly be a book?

 

So keep an eye out for my reviews when I finish the books. Have you read either of these yet? I’d love to hear what you think, but no spoilers!