Friday, March 31, 2017

A Man Called Ove

Fiction by Fredrik Backman.

A Man Called Ove

This was a lovely book, a heart-warming story that manages to be realistic and fun, not saccharine and forced. I definitely recommend it!

I also read by this author: My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Fifth Gospel

Fiction by Ian Caldwell.

The Fifth Gospel

Ian Caldwell coauthored the book Rule of Four, which I read years ago but still remember as a very good puzzle-type mystery. This book has a similar easy-reading voice but slower plotting and slightly less interesting characterizations, which tells me that Mr. Caldwell probably did most of the actual writing on that previous venture while his partner likely came up with more of the story. At least that's what I think. I could be wrong. Not that it makes any difference, of course; I'm just always interested in the mechanics of coauthor partnerships for some reason.

But I digress.

This book reminded me of The Da Vinci Code, which the book jacket instructs us specifically NOT to compare it to. It's a pretty good intellectual thriller, not action-packed but still with an intersting mystery. I didn't like the ending, though.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

No Time For Goodbye

Fiction by Linwood Barclay.

No Time for Goodbye

Now THIS was a good thriller! I read it in one day.

I found it in a list of "favorite page-turning thrillers" written by the author of What She Knew, and it did not disappoint me.

The premise: A fourteen-year-old girl wakes up one morning and her parents and older brother have vanished without a trace. They never come back. But where did they go?

Read and find out!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Whole Town's Talking

Fiction by Fannie Flagg.

The Whole Town's Talking: A Novel

I usually like Fannie Flagg's books, but this one was too disjointed and seemed rushed. She was trying to cover about a hundred years of a town's history and possibly make an unconventional statement about the afterlife as well, but the combination made the story fall kind of flat.

I also read recently by this author: The Last Reunion of the All-Girl Filling Station
(That one was good!)

Sunday, March 19, 2017

What She Knew

Fiction by Gilly MacMillan,

What She Knew

This was a good thriller with some interesting twists and a surprise ending.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls

Subtitled:A Handbook For Unapologetic Living
Nonfiction by Jes Baker

Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls: A Handbook for Unapologetic Living

Sigh. I really have to stop trying to read nonfiction. I just can't enjoy it most of the time.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Small Great Things

Fiction by Jodi Picoult.

Small Great Things

I love everything by Jodi Picoult, as I've mentioned before. She makes all her characters so believable and accessible, even though they are extremely diverse.

But, as I've also mentioned before (see Leaving Time), she usually puts these characters in situations that highlight certain Big Issues, and sometimes this can be upsetting to readers. This particular book was about the Big Issue of racism, the insidious kind that still exists in our society, although we like to think it has been eradicated.

This is an uncomfortable subject for a white girl from Alabama like me, and I had some trouble reading about it. I was especially upset when I saw trouble bearing down on the main character, whom I liked a lot and hated to see stepped all over. So this book took me longer to finish than usual.

Still, it was a very good story.

I also read recently by this author: Perfect Match

Monday, March 6, 2017

Kids of Appetite

Fiction by David Arnold.

Kids of Appetite

This is a "young adult" novel about a teenage boy with a facial deformity who is dealing with the untimely death of his father. It was a good story.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Gone for Good

Fiction by Harlan Coben.

Gone for Good

This story begins with the main character, Will Klein, at his mother's deathbed. She tells him that she believes his brother, who had disappeared eleven years ago after being accused of a terrible murder, is still alive. He decides it must be wishful thinking on his mother's part, until he finds evidence that she might be right...

This was an exciting thriller with several great twists, including a shock (or two) at the end.

I also read recently by this author: Missing You