My third book for 2019 followed a year in the life of 24 year old Ella as she starts her journey as a Rhodes Scholar in Oxford. Ella is a young prodigy in American politics. She is young, driven, and has a plan for her entire life. She has wanted to spend a year in Oxford since she was a teenager, and jer Rhodes year is her last hurrah before she has to get a job and tackle the real world. Of course, once she gets to Oxford, she is offered a job on a promising US political campaign (and […]
Justina Ireland’s 2018 YA novel Dread Nation was one of New York Public Library’s Winter 2018 Picks for Young Adults. When I read the brief description about alternative history and zombies and then saw the totally badass cover over on Amazon, I had to read it. Although it clocks in at over 400 pages, I zipped through it in no time, and all I can say is that there had better be a sequel soon! Set in the 1870s, Ireland shows her readers an America that is horrifying and familiar. She has also created some cool and courageous characters, most […]
I really rather wish this book had been written back when I was in my late teens, so the girl-I-was could have been reassured that she wasn’t alone.
My Sister, the Serial Killer is the debut novel from Nigerian writer Oyinkan Braithwaite, and it packs a real punch! In under 300 pages, Braithwaite draws the reader into a fascinating story of Korede, our narrator, who finds herself repeatedly having to clean up her younger sister Ayoola’s messes. And those messes are the murders of her boyfriends, three and counting. The novel is something of a thriller, as we wait to see if Ayoola will kill again and if the sisters will escape the law, but it is also a commentary on modern Nigeria and the position of women […]
cbr10bingo The Book Was Better The novel Mudbound was a Pen America Literary Award winner and was turned into an award winning film starring Mary J. Blige. It’s a powerful and tragic story about land, love, friendship and racism in post-WWII Mississippi, told from multiple points of view. Both the novel and the film are excellent, but I must give the nod to the original novel as being better. The novel (and film) open with brothers Henry and Jamie McAllen burying their Pap while Henry’s wife Laura and their two daughters look on. It’s raining and muddy and our first […]
#cbr10bingo So Shiny The only reason I read Beowulf for my last selection was because I wanted to read The Mere Wife, a 2018 novel which I had heard was an innovative take on Beowulf from the point of view of the monster Grendel’s mother, and I wanted to have the epic poem fresh in mind for this. I read Madeline Miller’s Circe earlier this year and loved her imagining of Circe’s point of view vis-a-vis the events of The Odyssey, and initial reviews of The Mere Wife sounded promising. I was not disappointed. The Mere Wife is a startling […]
#cbr10bingo Listicles Educated has been on the New York Times Combined Print and E-book Nonfiction Best Seller list for over 33 weeks. It is also one of Time Magazine’s Best Memoirs of 2018 So Far Educated: A Memoir is Tara Westover’s riveting account of how she went from growing up home schooled in a survivalist family in Idaho to PhD student of History at Cambridge. Westover is the youngest of seven children raised by parents whose goal was to live “off the grid” and who believed that the coming of the end times was immanent. Much of the book focuses […]
#cbr10bingo This is the End The Ghost Road is the third and final volume in Pat Barker’s Regeneration trilogy. Set during WWI in England, the trilogy tells the story of both real and fictional characters trying to make sense of a senseless war. The first book focused on the patients at Craiglockhart Hospital, an asylum for soldiers suffering from shell shock and being treated so as to be sent back to the front. Book two centered on the fictional character Billy Prior, a soldier recovering from both physical and psychological injury in an England in the throes of raging homophobia […]