Let’s look back at the books I read in February. It was a short month but I still managed to finish five books.
Links are to Good Reads, followed by my review of each book.
A Fall of Marigolds by Susan Meissner
I really enjoyed this book. The story is interesting, the writing is good, and the characters are believable. But I think it could have been so much more if the author had dug a little deeper and not resolved everything so neatly at the end. There was anguish and hope and love but it was very much on the surface and part of a whole “life lessons” thing that felt a little forced. It could have been much more thought provoking had the writing just been a bit more challenging.
The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman
The writing was excellent but the story fell flat for me and just never really got off the ground. It had great potential but it was, honestly, a little boring.
A Great Reckoning by Louise Penny
I don’t know how Louise Penny does it but these keep getting better. In fact, this one may be the best one yet. Gamache and all of the characters in Three Pines continue to be my favorites.
Stoner by John Williams
The life lesson I got from this book? An unremarkable life can still leave a remarkable and lasting impression on others. Quiet, unassuming, beautiful and moving, that sums up my feelings about this book.
Before the Fall by Noah Hawley
I give this high marks for the entertainment factor as the story was interesting and kept me reading so that I could find out what happened. The writing style and structure, though, wasn’t the best. Still recommended for those who enjoy a (slightly) suspenseful story.
And there you have it. 5 books, all mostly good or very good. What have you been reading lately?
Mary K. in Rockport says
“Dark Money” — I’ve had it since Christmas but can only read a little bit at a time because it’s very infuriating.
I’m still “saving” that Louise Penny … just when I get ready to start, another hold comes up on my Overdrive list! I read two awesome books last month: 1. Underground Railroad and 2. Daring Greatly. I know you’ve read the first, but not sure about the second – highly recommend!
Thanks for your reviews! Love Louise Penny. I (finally) finished The Underground Railroad. I found I could not read it just before bed (when I typically read) because it disturbed me too much. But, glad I finished it. Now am reading News of the World by Paulette Jiles…just barely 1/4 of the way through and it is ok so far – not great, but good writing. Decided, too, to read a bunch of books on the shelves – ones from my grandparents’ house, etc. Starting with B. F.’s Daughter by John P. Marquand published in 1946. Interesting to read a novel from that time period. And, just found out it is a movie with Barbara Stanwyck!
Thank you for your reviews! You give the best, unvarnished reviews Carole. They are tremendously helpful. And, I am with you Gamache and Three Pines just keep improving!
Thanks for the Stoner recommendation. I’ve had it in my library for a long time, started it once and didn’t get very far, but I think I owe it another try. Happy Reading!
I enjoy reading your reviews of books. You sum up the story without revealing it. Stoner is a book that has stayed with me over the years. I’m reading Ruby by Cynthia Bond and The Green Road by Anne Enright.
Thank you for the book inspiration. I am going to have to check out Louise Penny.
Lydia S says
I haven’t ready anything that wow’d me. Have the 3rd LP book on hold, and am currently listening to the All-Girl Filing Station-little soon to make a judgement call.
Only five books? Haha–you have me beat bigly lol!
Nice reviews, Carole! I’m reading The Vegetarian and Hag-Seed. (What would we do without books???)
Thanks, as always, for the book reviews, Carole. I am reading I Saw a Man, and I am enjoying it very much. If only we did not have to wait so long between Louise Penny books!