When I read the synopsis of John Boyne’s This House is Haunted, two things impelled me to request copy immediately: “ghost story” and “Dickensian prose.” I know! I know! Some of you are thinking “Omgosh, that sounds like THE COOLEST THING EVAR and I must read it NOW,” and the rest of you are going, “Uhhh…why?” K. Lemme ‘splain. This ...
May I just say that I love Thanksgiving? It’s my absolute favorite holiday–the food, the family, the food…. So the premise (um, and the title. And frankly, the cover art) of Ellen Cooney’s Thanksgiving appealed to me, completely: “the story of one family through many generations, as Thanksgiving dinner is prepared.” In execution, the premise is a little less on-point. ...
After a long spate of YA novels these last few weeks, I was rather excited to get my hands on The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Cafe, a general fiction novel I put on hold a couple of months before it was published, back in July. Blueberry is a nice little book. It’s a predictable little love story, incorporating a little ...
I usually detest modernizations and retellings of classic literature, but The Flight of Gemma Hardy received such high praise that I found myself, with trepidation, checking it out from the library. I am so glad I did. Gemma’s tale is beautifully written. It follows the story of Jane Eyre in its main arc, but the details belong firmly to Gemma–enough ...
The Perfect Ghost is a perfect example of when I should just give up on reading a book. Call it quits. Kaput. Finis. For me, this was awkwardly written, poorly characterized, and forgettable. Barnes’ book seemed so convoluted that I’m not sure the author herself saw the ending coming. Em, the main character, is billed as agoraphobic, but is only written ...
Reading The Myth of You and Me was…odd. It’s about two women who were extremely close friends for a number of years, and then fall out because of a betrayal. Then one contacts the other after a long silence, because she is getting married. Let’s just say it hit a little close to home this month. Stewart is a good ...
There were parts of Blackbird House I absolutely delighted in, and others I just felt lukewarm about. I'm not generally much for short stories--I like my reading to have some thread of plot or continuity. Happily, Hoffman accomplishes exactly this with Blackbird House: each story moves forward a generation, but takes a character from the last, and each centers ...
I've had this bizarre romantic fantasy for a while, now, that at some future time, I might like to own a (SMALL) farm, and so I keep picking up books on the subject, hoping they'll shed some light on the idea. Kimball's The Dirty Life is the first I've come across that I actually found helpful and, simultaneously, fascinating. ...
I am bummed. I asked for a copy of The Egg and I for Christmas, and highly anticipated reading it. I loved the 1947 film with Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray, and while I know most books and movies don’t follow each other exactly, I at least thought I’d be in for the same tone. No. Sadly, just…no. I would ...