I’m not sure why I went into this book thinking I’d be reading a light summer-y “chick lit” type story. (Is it the cover? It’s not like I don’t have a synopsis available! Haha!) Instead,The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street is a dense, 512-page historical saga that spans the 1910s to the 1980s, taking in everything from Ellis ...
My love affair with Lisa See’s writing started several years ago, when I picked up Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. I went on to pick up almost everything she’s ever written (thank you, library), and can say with authority that she’s one of my favorite authors. I love See’s writing, and her characters are always lively and fully-fledged. The same ...
  I know what you’re thinking. Campy wax museums–right? Boardwalks full of tourist attractions and cheesy photographs and wax representations of Brangelina and Elvis. That’s Madame Tussaud. WRONG! Madame Tussaud shocked the pants off me, which makes it a perfect example of why I love good historical fiction. I had absolutely no idea that a) she was an actual, historical figure, and b) she was a ...
I will freely admit that beginning to read All the Light We Cannot See made me nervous. It’s been a really long time since I last went on a first date, but that’s exactly what picking up this book felt like: all that excitement and hope, but that familiar nervousness at the back of my mind that it might not go ...
If you’re looking for something that’s a change from the constant wave of dystopian blather in YA literature, The Peculiars is it. It’s an adventurous story with a likeable heroine, set in a quirky historical time period. Steampunk fantasy? Sure, why not? McQuerry is a natural writer, and I delighted in every last page, here. Her characters are colorful and ...
  I was so excited to start reading Delicious!: A Novel. The synopsis promises a story about a girl, New York, renowned chef James Beard (!), and a food magazine. It’s like someone asked me what I love and then pitched a big, fat juicy one right to me. Delicious! is absolutely everything it promises, and more. A story about family and relationships, ...
If I had discovered I Capture the Castle in my youth, I’m certain I would have re-read it dozens of times, wrinkling its spine and ingraining its passages into my memory the same way I’ve done with Pride and Prejudice and Rebecca. Instead, I didn’t have the joy of falling in love with Castle until my thirties. Castle is the ...
It’s difficult, really, to explain a novel like Peace Like a River. I try to be discriminating about how often I give five stars when I review books, so that when I do, it really means something. Here, five stars doesn’t even feel like enough. Trite quips like “tour de force” and “emotional powerhouse” come to mind as I ...
A Death-Struck Year is Makiia Lucier’s debut novel and I hate to say it, but here and there, it  shows. I didn’t dislike this book–far from it. I thought the plot was interesting, the characters were mostly well-done, and the setting was great. I just wanted a little…more. Firstly: the characters. Cleo, the heroine, is lovely. She’s brave, thoughtful, and ...
I’m going through and trying to add reviews for the books I read a couple of years ago (the ones I can remember, at least), and I am SHOCKED to discover I haven’t reviewed The Dry Grass of August yet. I loved this book so much that I can’t simply post a review and then have it sit quietly ...