“WITH FREEDOM, BOOKS, FLOWERS AND THE MOON, WHO COULD NOT BE HAPPY?” – OSCAR WILDE
Introducing the AOTR Book Club! Rather than publishing my top 10 books twice a year, I’ve decided to take on the challenge and review 4 books every month. I’ll give each book a short summary (without spoilers), my personal star rating, and will finish each post with a list of the books I plan to review the following month. I hope you can read along with me!
WHAT I WAS DOING WHILE YOU WERE BREEDING
WARNING! READING THIS BOOK WILL CAUSE SEVERE CASE OF WANDERLUST. Kristin Newman’s memoir is a laugh-out-loud funny, hopeful, desperate but above all courageous. She writes in a way that feels like you’re right there with her as she shares the details of her life that most would be embarrassed to confess but also the sacrifices and challenges that come with choosing the life you want to live. Being in my mid-twenties with aspirations to pack my bags and hit the road for as long as I can afford to, these stories and experiences helped reiterate how important it is to choose a life that you want to live regardless of what others think is the right way to be living. I’m at that age where I’m getting invited to weddings and baby showers but that’s not the life I want for me right now and Kristin proves that is absolutely OK. That I’m not alone in feeling this way. I hope to live a life with as much passion and love as possible and this memoir showed me that it is possible.
WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY BESIDE OURSELVES
Karen Joy Fowler
If you don’t know the premise of this book already, I’m not going to be the one to tell you. I started reading this book knowing absolutely nothing about the characters or the story. I’m glad this was the case because I feel like it may not be as enjoyable for readers who know the twist in the story. You don’t have to wait too long to find out what the ‘twist’ is (literally it’s a few chapters in) but I know the surprise made the reading experience completely different for me. The storyline blew me away as the timeline jumps back and forth throughout the narrator’s life slowly filling in the gaps up until the last page. It is at times witty and mysterious but as the story develops the seriousness and raw emotion unfolds as you read about the narrator’s dysfunctional family. Do yourself a favour and if you don’t know anything about the book, leave it that way and just read it!
TWO BY TWO
OK, so I’m a HUGE sucker when it comes to Nicholas Sparks! I’ve read all his books but this book is completely different from Sparks’ typical guy meets girl and falls in love which is why I think it has been criticised by some readers – but I really liked the change! I loved the story, I loved the characters (except Vivien – she can go jump) and it still had that romance and charm in true Sparks’ fashion. This book explores the things that can go awry when trying to find balance in a new family dynamic but also the joy, love and positive learning curve that comes from it as well. Congratulations to Nicholas Sparks, marking 20 years of sentimental award-winning love stories with the release of Two by Two. Can’t wait for the next one!
THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN
If you like mystery and suspense in your books, this is a great read! Fans of Gone Girl and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo will enjoy this – I couldn’t put it down! This creepy, unsettling thriller is incredibly fast-paced and will have you holding your breath right up until the last page. It wasn’t so much that every scene was full of suspense, but more that Hawkins tells the story in such a way you become fully engrossed and it keeps the reader intrigued and constantly guessing as the book jumps from different character POVs. I’ve read several novels in this genre, and in most cases I can usually guess where the story is going, but I found Hawkins executed this story in such a brilliant way I was surprised at how the ending unfolded. Really looking forward to her next book ‘Into the Water’!
I’ll be reviewing:
- The Light Between Oceans – M.L Stedman
- Confess – Colleen Hoover
- The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
- Into the Water – Paula Hawkins
If you happen to have read or are planning to read one or more of these, please link me if you’ve reviewed them, and I will share your link in my post next month!
As always, would love recommendations!