Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Big Little Lies
By Liane Moriarty
A look into the seemingly perfect lives of a group of Kindergarten moms and what lead to the events of Trivia Night, which ended in murder. This book is written from the perspective of three different moms, each very different from each other but connected by experience. Each with a child starting Kindergarten. One very beautiful and rich, one remarried experienced school mom, and one very young single mom.
There is plenty of drama through out this book to keep the reader engaged. Honestly I could not put this book down. I was completely drawn into the story and eager to find out what happened on Trivia Night. I like how there were little snips of interview about the events of that night at the end of each chapter from various other kindergarten moms and dads. I found it entertaining and kept me wanting to know more. Most of the story actually covers the months and events leading up to that night and you learn that everything isn't always what it seems. My one minor complaint was that it seemed to take forever to get to the big event. There was so much build up and I just wanted it to get to Trivia night quicker. This was quite a long book at 458 pages.
There were a couple really great things this book helped to illustrate. One it showed how easy it is to be caught up in rumor and hearsay. To take sides with out having all the facts. This book did a great job of showing how clicks can form and how it can negatively effect everyone. After reading this I sure hope that I never let myself get caught up in school drama. The thing is I can see how easy something like this can happen because we just want to protect our kids and we would do anything to help them if we thought they were the victim of bullying.
Two, and probable the most important, was the portrayal of domestic violence. How easy it is to hide and how easy it is to miss the signs if you are on the outside looking in. In the age of Facebook it is so easy to put on the happy face of a perfect family. To create the image of a perfect life. I think this book shows that you never know what is going on in some ones personal life. It is so easy to judge or to compare and we really shouldn't.
I really liked this book and would recommend it! I just learned that HBO made a TV series based on this book and now I'm curious to find out more. Anyone watch the show? Is it worth checking out?
Thursday, July 20, 2017
by Kristin Hannah
This is a World War II novel set in German occupied France. It follows the lives of two sisters and the decisions they were forced to make during a time that the Nazis had taken over every aspect of their country. They are very different from each other and their paths seemed very different but I think that by the end they learned that they were not as different as they thought.
To be honest I was a little hesitant about reading another WWII book. The last few I have read have not been that great. I kept seeing this book being recommended though, so I decided to give it a chance. I sure am glad I did. I thought this was a really touching story and I feel like I learned a lot about the German occupation of France. I can't even imagine living through an experience like that, let alone risking your life to fight against them.
The best thing about this book for me was the ending. Did everything end happily ever after? No, it was about WWII after all. There was definitely some ugly crying involved, but it showed that there were good people who made a real difference. Even if it was a small difference, it was important. There is a lot to be said about our ability to help those around us even in it feels like we aren't making much of a difference in the grand scheme of things.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
The Runaway King
by Jennifer A. Nielsen
This is the second book in this series and I enjoyed this one just as much as the first one. This series is definitely written for a younger crowd. It would be great for the middle school group. But that didn't stop me from enjoying it. Any book that is well written and keeps me entertained is worth my time to read and this one was definitely a fun one. The characters are great and the story was engaging. I like that main character, Jaron, kept me guessing the entire time about what his next move would be. There always seemed to be some end game he was working for even when things didn't seem to be going his way. I liked finding out just how it would all work out. This is a great fantasy book and series that I would highly recommend.
Tuesday, July 18, 2017
I finally got a chance to see the film version of A Monster Calls a few weeks ago and I loved it.
This was such a hauntingly beautifully book and I am so glad that they were able to keep the same feeling in the movie. I think they did an amazing job bring this story to life. They even included the illustrations that added so much depth to the book. Liam Neeson was the perfect voice for the monster. The stories told by the monster were beautifully animated. It really was perfect. I cried just as much as I did in the book. I would highly recommend it.
You can read my review of the book here.
Thursday, July 6, 2017
by Jodi Lynn Anderson
I thought that this was such a beautiful retelling of the Peter Pan story but with the main focus as Tiger Lily. This story is told through the eyes of Tinker Bell and I really liked reading from the perspective. I thought that it made the story even more interesting.
I was immediately drawn into the world of Neverland that Tiger Lily lived in. Her story was fascinating and I loved that she was a strong character but that she also had weakness. She was independent and capable. She did what she wanted, even if it wasn't what was expect of a girl. But at the same time, she was so caught up in what was happening to her that she didn't realize what was happening to the people she loved.
It did get kind of slow in the middle and it didn't really seem like much was happening. It took awhile to really get back to the meat of the story. There was some very interesting commentary on Christianity trying to convert indigenous people and the problems that can cause. It definitely did not put them in very good light and even I found myself frustrated with him trying to change and convert everyone to his view of the world. Which I'm sure was the point the author was trying to make.
I did really love the ending. I thought it was a beautiful message about love and loss. About the ability to heal and move on. To love more then one person and to recognize that it is ok to love again. Especially when you love someone who is dearer to you then life and then lose them. It was the perfect ending to the story.
*Also if you are interesting in checking the book out the picture above gives you a direct link to Amazon. The same goes for all the other post on this blog. Most pictures of the books are linked to Amazon, where you can read more reviews or even buy them.
Friday, June 23, 2017
By Ashley Poston
This ended up being a really cute story. It was a fun take on the Cinderella story. It is full of fun geeky references. This is a modern telling, with food trucks, movie stars and Sci fi fans. I think this story does a great job of showing that it's ok to be yourself. That liking things that are considered geeky doesn't make you weird and that there are others out there who like the same things. You are not alone.
It did take me a little bit to really get drawn into the story but once I did I couldn't put it down. It jumps between the two main Characters, Elle and Darien. My one complaint at the beginning was that their voice in the book sounded too familiar, like reading the same character just one being a boy instead of a girl. After the first few chapters though I stopped feeling that way and they became very distinct personalities. I'm sure it is just her style of writing. I just had to get to know the characters first.
I loved the ending and how it all wrapped up. It was such a cute modern fairy tale. I would definitely recommend this if you are looking for something fun to read.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
The False Prince
By Jennifer A. Nielsen
This was such a fun book to read. This is a fantasy novel filled with intrigue, hidden secrets and plenty of action. In the book several orphans are taken by a noblemen, who has plans to use them take the throne, by having one of them impersonate the long lost son of the king. The story moved quickly and easily kept my interest through out the entire book. I thought that the characters were interesting. I especially liked the main character Sage, who was mischievous and stubborn but also kind and thoughtful. He was a character I could really get behind.
The story was somewhat predictable for me but I was happy with it any way. If it hadn't gone the way I wanted it to, I actually might have been a little disappointed. This is a case of knowing what is going to happen but in a good way. This book is geared towards 10-14 year olds but I still really enjoyed it. I think this would be a great book for a kid who needs something to really grab their interest in reading. I can't wait to read the rest of the trilogy.