Tag Archives: Book club

Wreckage- Emily Bleeker

Wreckage

“Lies, good one at least, are smooth and well thought out. It’s the truth that’s sloppy.”

Is it me or have I been reading really quickly these days? I told my fiance it’s because of the kindle and maybe it is. Either way it’s been nice to be on a reading binge.

Wreckage tells the tale of Lillian and David two people who find themselves stranded on an island somewhere in the South Pacific after a messy jet plane crash. They are accompanied by Kent, the pilot, and Lillian’s mother-in-law Margaret. It is told in varying chapters from David’s point of view and then Lillian’s and it also goes a step further and goes from present day, where the two are being interviewed separately, and back when they were stranded.

I don’t like reading other reviews before I start a book because I want the experience to be all my own. I do sometimes skim through the first few lines of them on goodreads though. One person said that the dialogue was lacking substance and I would agree and disagree. There were times that I thought the dialogue, mostly between Lilian and her husband Jerry, was just not believable. Then there were other times that I felt the author was speaking from the heart.

The twists in this book were gut wrenching, from death and betrayal to touching on the subject of “two men and one woman stranded on an island together”. The last couple chapters are just a roller coaster ride of emotion; and while I was satisfied with the ending I did always hold out hope for Lily and David. The love they have for each other oozes of the page and you just wish that you had someone in your life that thinks about you the way that they think about each other. Without the plane crash and all.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I am excited to see where this author’s career takes her.

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A Murder in Time- Julie McElwain

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“Little twists and turns.”

I picked up this book after finally figuring out how to borrow ebooks from my local library. While trying to do that the first thing that popped up is “Join the Big Library Read”. Being the book nerd that I am I clicked on the link and was taken to biglibraryread.com, which is where I saw a synopsis and cover of Julie McElwain’s book  A Murder in Time.

First I should explain what  The Big Library Read is, eh? It is the first ever global eBook club! I’m not sure what the timeline is for the books, is it every month or not, but it seems like it is picking up steam since it started back in 2014. All you need is a library card or a student id. When I read the synopsis for the book I didn’t think it would be for me. Time travel…murder mystery… Then I thought; didn’t I just read a book kind of like that? 11/22/63 !!! So, I gave it a shot.

There are no holds on Big Library Read books and you get them for two weeks. I picked this book up on Friday and flew through it so I’m not quite sure what happens to books if you don’t finish them. Maybe they just disappear. How sad.

Anyway, back to the book. I loved this book! I never thought I was one for murder mysteries; which is strange because my Netflix queue is filled with murder mystery documentaries. This book was a joy to read and kept me guessing right up until the end. The language is easy to read and the chapters are short, which I enjoy because it makes it seem like things go by quicker.

Kendra Donovan is an FBI agent who goes on a mission to destroy the man who changed her life and the lives of her fellow agents. When she falls in to a “wormhole” and is transported to the same castle she happens to be standing in but in the year 1815. She quickly realizes this is no dream and sets out trying to blend in. Which is hard when you don’t know the lingo. People didn’t really go around taking the Lord’s name in vain and calling people “son’s a bitches” back then.

She also meets the people who live at Aldrich Castle and the people who are there for a sort of dinner party weekend. When a girl is found in the nearby river dead Kendra quickly snaps back in to FBI mode and sets up shop in the castle to try and find out who did it and when he will strike again.

A Murder in Time had everything! Fantasy, mystery, and a bit of romance. I could not put it down and was startled a few times when my cat jumped up on the couch next to me. Once I got to the end my jaw was on the floor and I was craving more! I want to know more about her scientist parents and the “experiments”. I want to know how she has been the only person to find this “wormhole” to 1815. And gosh darn it, I want to know what happens with her and her 1815 love interest Alec!!!

Ms. McElwain is writing a sequel and it is slated to come out in 2017. Now I wait…


Little Lies- Heather Gudenkauf

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“As much as I would like to protect the children I work with from the truth, I learned very early on that lies, big or little, eventually destroy, or at the very least, erode their faith in the world.”

Ms. Gudenkauf does it again! Those of you who have been following me for a while know that she is hands down one of my favorite authors. Starting with The Weight of Silence which left me so speechless I didn’t know what to read next for about a month. Then with These Things Hidden which also left in a kind of “book readers euphoria” for a few weeks.

Her writing is so real and fluid you feel like you are a peeping-tom, quietly looming in the bushes of the lives of her characters. Not to mention the twists and turns she has always placed in the perfect points in her books. Little Lies is no different! A novella prequel to Little Mercies, it gives you a backstory in to the work relationship of Ellen and Joe; a social worker and a police officer who seem to be a little more than friends.

It deals with a case that we have seen before. A woman is found dead by the side of her young child who is very much alive. What ensues is a who-dun-it and why that is so gripping to read, I couldn’t it down. At 44 pages (Kindle) it’s a short read. But it being summer I was sitting outside enjoying a beverage and baking in the heat and even though I could barely stand the heat from the sun I stayed until I was finished.

She never disappoints me and I can’t wait to pick up Little Mercies. Unfortunately, before I read this book I had already made a commitment, to myself, that I would read the worldwide “Big Library Read”,  A Murder in Time. I just discovered that I can borrow ebooks from my library. Game changer. So, until then, Ellen and Joe are going to have to be put on hold and; as always, Thanks, Ms. Gudenkauf!

#BigLibraryRead


Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children- Ransom Riggs

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“I had just come to accept that my life would be ordinary when extraordinary things began to happen.

I received this trilogy for Christmas this year and was not disappointed. I have seen this series floating around in the book-iverse for quite some time and was always interested in picking it up. But I never quite knew what it was. Is it a young adult novel? Is it just straight up fantasy? What is it? Tell me! It is billed as a young adult novel, though I found some very adult themes running through out and if I had read this as a teenager or “young adult” I would definitely have had nightmares. It does feel somewhere in between Harry Potter and The Magician’s.

The premise is simple enough to follow; a boy, Jacob, witnesses his grandfather’s murder by some monster that only he can see. Then he sends himself on an adventure to find the home that his grandfather lived in before he left for WWII. Jacob remembers his grandfather’s fantastical story of a girl who could levitate, a boy living with bees inside of him, an invisible boy. There were even pictures to accompany his grandfather’s “tall tales”, pictures that are peppered through out the book to accompany the tale that you are reading. Which I find amazing! It lends just a little more to the the fantastical nature of the book, it also makes you feel you may be reading someone’s diary. The pictures are all real, some slightly doctored, which Mr. Riggs makes mention of at the back of each book.

<<slight spoilers ahead>>

 

You meet some fantastic characters along the way, not only the invisible boy and the girl who can levitate. There is also a girl called Emma, whom you find out had a rather romantic relationship with Jacob’s grandfather. This is where things get a little weird for me. Emma and Jacob strike up a rather intimate relationship, one that Riggs does comment on as being strange for Jacob. No mention on what Emma feels as of yet. I’m interested to see where Riggs goes with this sordid relationship. I also  have found myself scared for the safety of every character; it feels very Game of Thrones, he may off one at any minute. Which makes me sad because in the span of 300 pages I have grown to love all of the characters; including Jacob’s dad, who I hope makes a triumphant return in the sequel.

This book is for anyone who wants to get lost in a magical world during these last dark days of winter. It’s a quick read because you can’t put it down. You’re racing against time with Jacob to find out the truth behind his grandfather’s last words and to put the pieces together of his own life as he hurtles toward manhood.

Some of the plot twists I saw coming but that doesn’t  mean I enjoyed it any less. I’m excited to get back to Miss Peregrine’s world and fit some more pieces of the puzzle together.

So, let’s go find some loops.


The Jane Austen Book Club – Karen Joy Fowler

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You’ve done so many things and read so many books. Do you still believe in happy endings?

I, like many other bibliophiles out there, like to read the book before I see the movie adaptation. I say adaptation because that is exactly what it is, they are not taking the text word for word and creating a visual companion they are taking the story and creating their spin on it. I hasten to mention Winter’s Tale. LOVED the book but the movie was just meh, but this is neither the time nor the place. Today we speak only of Jane Austen.

One lonely weekend back in January my fiance was out of town and I pushed The Jane Austen Book Club to number one in my Netflix queue. I opened a bottle of wine as a decent sized snow storm raged outside and settle in to probably hate this romantic dramedy. In truth, I actually enjoyed the movie. It made me want to join a book club so I could talk to actual people about the wonderful things I was reading and squabble over silly nuances in text, instead of just sitting by my lonesome behind a screen telling you all my opinions on literature.

I actually owned two copies of JABC and decided to donate the hardcover back to a local thrift store when we moved from Chicago. Since I enjoyed the movie I was planning on enjoying the book just as much, if not more. Which I did. It’s a short easy read told from the point of view of a nameless woman in the book club and every chapter is centered around which Jane Austen novel they are reading at the time. Short and to the point, I found Fowler’s novel engaging and still emotional enough for me to rally behind these women and wish them well in all of their personal endeavors. Unlike many book to film adaptations this one stays fairly faithful to the end. Both the book and the film are short and sweet and sometimes that’s really all you need.