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For the Love of Reading: October through early December, 2018

Today I’m updating you and sharing the books I’ve read since October 22. It’s slightly less than usual, I think partly because I’ve been knitting more. And also maybe because I was hitting Sims Mobile pretty hard in November. But I’ve been back on track with my reading the last couple of weeks and it’s time to catch you up.

We Were the Lucky OnesWe Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A very good story of a Jewish family living in Poland during WWII. I liked that it was based on the author’s family and found the different story lines to be interesting (and horrifying) but it was sometimes confusing keeping track of the characters.



TranscriptionTranscription by Kate Atkinson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was disappointed with Atkinson’s latest, particularly since I adored Life After Life. This had all the elements to make it great: the backdrop of WW2, quirky British characters, and an intriguing plot. And yet it never really took off for me. I didn’t connect with Juliet and found the timeline to be very choppy and disjointed. Nevertheless, I love Atkinson’s style and her portrayal of the lasting damage of the war on England and her people is brilliant.


The Clockmaker's DaughterThe Clockmaker’s Daughter by Kate Morton
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This book had great potential and an interesting plot but it was just too long with too many characters. I had some issues keeping track of who was who and the jumping around was disjointed, I’d find myself having a hard time remembering where a certain plot point left off when Morton finally got back to the present. After all the details and all the build up the ending felt rushed and I’m particularly annoyed at some of the ambiguity and unanswered questions. This would have been better if it had been about 150 pages shorter, I think. Recommended with reservations for Morton fans.


The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a MemoirThe Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir by Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

It’s always hard to give a negative review to a memoir so I’ll preface this by saying that the author writes very well about her childhood experiences and about the murder of a young boy by a child molester. What I have issues with is the connection between the two – I feel that’s forced and used as a means to get the author’s story out there. I’d have had more appreciation, I think, for the author’s story alone.


WarlightWarlight by Michael Ondaatje
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Do not read this book for plot. Read it for imagery and prose, for character and setting. Interpret the things left ambiguous and just immerse yourself in the hazy memories of childhood, loss, intrigue, and love.



First Frost (Waverley Family, #2)First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Light and easy, a great palate cleanser after a lot of heavy books lately. Recommended for those who enjoyed Practical Magic.


VoxVox by Christina Dalcher
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The premise is fascinating and terrifying and this should have been a terrific book. But. There is little depth to the characters and the big pay off at the end feels rushed and confused. Read The Handmaid’s Tale instead, it’s a much better book.


Tomorrow Will Be Different: Love, Loss, and the Fight for Trans EqualityTomorrow Will Be Different: Love, Loss, and the Fight for Trans Equality by Sarah McBride
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book is good but I feel like it could have been great if McBride had focused less on the politics and more on the personal.


What are you reading right now? I always want to know!

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Looking at those reviews, I can see why you might have been reading a little less. Sometimes we can’t help but sneak in a few pages here and there, sometimes it’s less compelling. Thanks for the reviews.

  2. I’m glad Warlight was better than average as it looks like a less than stellar bunch of books. I hope a really great book or two comes your way!

  3. Yup – understand why your reading was lighter. I don’t think I’ve ever seen you review a collection of books with such underwhelming ratings! I read Warlight and liked it ok…I thought the 2nd half was much, much better than the first half. I just finished “The Alice Network” which I enjoyed – perhaps more than “The Nightingale” and on my Kindle (finally) is “The Feather thief” and the latest from Louise Penny!! Hoping something good finds its way to you Carole!

  4. I’m reading Jane Eyre! (Listening actuallly.) And attempting to read The Widows of Malabar Hill. (And regarding the picture on your last post and Mrs. Maisel…she gives Black and White’s out to the door man and elevator guy in episode 1 or 2! And you’re right…it’s great!)

  5. Thank you for the reviews. I have run into a few books with lesser ratings, too. I’m looking for something great as it’s been awhile!

  6. I am currently on the hunt for a book that interests me. I just devoured The Kingdom of the Blind, as I do with all of Louise Penney’s books, and I loved it. I wondered why this book was “late” this year, but she explains the difficulty she had with writing in light of her husband’s death. I hope she keeps writing this series. The characters are old friends by now! All the popular books seem to be so dystopic and dark these days, and that’s not really what I want to read in the depths of winter. I hope you find a special book soon!

  7. oh meh! I just finished listening to The Likeness (Tana French) and really enjoyed it. Then I downloaded Call the Midwife and I’m only at the beginning, but I think it’s going to be good!

  8. WWII is always compelling for me in part because of my relatives’ association with the war in various ways. All but one who was a little girl then are gone. I wonder what sources the authors are using?

  9. Let’s see. . . I’m listening to another of Ann Cleeves’ “Vera Stanhope” mysteries. (Always good in a pinch, and especially when life is too busy to concentrate too hard…) I’m also reading The Widows of Malabar Hill, which I’m having a hard time getting into. (I think it’s that life-is-busy thing, y’know?) At holiday time, I try to read “lighter” books. It works for me! XO

  10. Thanks for the reviews-I am totally unfamiliar with these authors so I appreciate knowing there are one’s I should avoid.

  11. Vox was next on my list, and I’m glad to read your lukewarm review, maybe I’ll pick something else. I’ve already read HMT, but there are so many other choices, obviously.

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