Friday, June 28, 2019

Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano



Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano was an emotional book that took me by surprise.  It follows the story of Edward Adler, a 12 year old who was the sole survivor of a plane crash. The novel shows his struggles through the healing process the years after the event.  At the same time the story also relives the flight minute by minute from boarding until the accident.

Although it is emotional and as a reader I felt myself becoming attached to characters I knew were going to die the novel is oddly uplifting.  It shows how people can persevere and not just survive but truly live after difficult situations. 

This is a powerful story and I recommend you check it out when it hits shelves in January 2020. 

I received an advanced readers copy of this novel from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.


Thursday, June 27, 2019

The Bookish LIfe of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman

Image from Netgalley.com


Coming out July 9th, The Bookish Life of Nina Hill  by Abbi Waxman is an adorable novel.  The protagonist, Nina, is a woman in her late twenties who works at a bookstore and loves to be alone (except for the presence of her cat Phil, of course). Her favorite pastime is to curl up with a good book. This is evident the moment people step in to her apartment and see her vast collection of books. Nina feels that she is living the life until she is introduced to an entire family she didn't know she had as well as a potential new love interest. Now, overwhelmed with people, Nina struggles to find a balance and realizes her life may have not been as perfect as she once thought.

This is a quick, light read that is perfect for the beach or just a little down time.  If you are looking for a book to read and simply enjoy without a whole lot of thought I suggest you grab this in July, 2019.  It was a fun read! 

I received an advanced copy of this novel from Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.




Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Book Club - July

Image from Goodreads.com

July is just around the corner and I am excited to announce Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens for our July Book Club pick. Its sure to be a great read!  I will review it as soon as possible.

Get it here:

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Dumped, Actually by Nick Spalding

Image from NetGalley.com
This is the first book I have read by Nick Spalding but I am sure it won't be the last.  Dumped Actually  is the hysterical story of Ollie Sweet who is devastated after losing what he thought was "the one."  In an attempt to get over her, Sweet, a writer, decides to write about the whole experience.  His story quickly gains popularity and then he continues to write about trying out all of the various ways other people have suggested he get over this girl.

I was drawn to this novel because I found the title humorous.  I stayed with the novel because I found myself frequently laughing out loud as I read it. I found myself having to explain parts to my husband because he wanted to know what had me so tickled.  

Overall this was a fabulous, funny read!  Get it when it comes out in July!

I received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Little Fires Everywhere introduces the reader to the Richardson family and their seemingly perfect, well planned life.  They live in the community of Shaker Heights which is just as well planned as their family.  Once a mother and daughter moved to town, however, the Richardson's' lives will never be the same.

I found this novel interesting and relatable.  Even though each character is extremely different, Ng's writing style helps you feel a deep connection with each person and understand their actions even if from the outside those actions may seem odd.  Little Fires Everywhere  makes the reader realize that stories have more than one side and it is best to try and view other peoples perspective before casting judgement.  If you are looking for an easy read that will still make you think then this book is for you!




Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Twenty-One Truths About Love by Matthew Dicks



After seeing the format of this book I had my doubts but boy was I wrong. Twenty-one Truths About Love is a great novel. I found myself laughing out loud (literally) over several parts to this book. It is written in list form and even though that sounds odd it makes it a fun read. I found Dan funny and relatable. He writes down the things we all think but no one says. If you are looking for a fun read, grab this when it comes out in November, 2019!

I received an ARC of this novel from St. Martin's Press and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Recursion by Blake Crouch

WOW! Is all I can say about this book!  After reading Dark Matter which is also by Blake Crouch I was looking forward to Recursion . I was blown away!

This novel follows the story of a neuroscientist, Helena Smith, as she searches for a way to create technology to preserve memories.  She is driven even more so by watching her mother's battle with memory loss.  Helena believes that memory makes reality and preserving memories will give us the chance to help millions of people.

This novel also follows a NYC detective named Barry Sutton. He is looking in to a new phenomenon the media is calling False Memory Syndrome.  People with the condition wake up with a lifetime of detailed memories that never occurred.  If memory does make reality, then what does this new condition mean to reality?

If you are looking for a science fiction novel that will blow your mind then this is for you.  Be prepared to lose hours of sleep, however, as you read via flashlight to find out what happens next.  I didn't think Blake Crouch could top Dark Matter but boy was I wrong.  Check out Recursion. You will not be disappointed.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

The Philosopher's War by Tom Miller


Tom Miller's The Philosopher's War  is continuation of his first novel, The Philosopher's Flight.  Since I loved the first novel so much I had high expectations for this one and it did not disappoint!

This novel continues shortly after the first novel left off with the story of Robert Weeks, a male trying to make it in Rescue and Evacuation Corps, which is all women, during the Great War.  This fantasy/alternative history novel grips the reader right from the start.  It is action packed and a good balance of characters from the first novel to make it feel familiar and new characters to make it fresh.  

This was a great book and I cannot wait to see what Tom Miller comes out with next!


I received a free ARC of The Philosopher’s War from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Kill Code by Clive Fleury

Image from Netgalley.com

Kill Code by Clive Fleury is a great read!  If you are looking for a quick read that will keep you engaged throughout the story then this is the novel for you.

This dystopian novel is set in the year 2031.  Climate change and a corrupt upper class has drastically changed the world as it once was.  The protagonist, Hogan Duran,  is a former cop who ended up resigning after an unfortunate accident involving his partner.  He is now living among the lower class, digging through trash just to survive.  Now, however, he has the chance to change all of that by taking a series of test to see if he is able to join a group called the National Security Council. But is the NSC all Hogan thinks it is?

The plot of Kill Code was action packed and quickly paced.  Great for a summer read if you want a quick read without the romance.  I am hoping this book becomes part of a series!

I received a free ARC of this novel from NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Starting A Book Club

As an avid reader and slight introvert I have always wanted to join a book club but had no idea how.  I would see others talking about their book clubs and be overcome with envy.  I wanted that time to sit down with friends and talk about the books we were reading!  I just had no idea how to jump in to one so I sat and waited.

About 2 weeks ago, as we were finishing up our school year, I ended up chatting with another teacher about books.  She confessed that she, too, wanted to join a book club but had never been invited to do so. That's when it hit me! Why wait around for someone to ask us to join a book club when we could start our own.  We decided to take the plunge and start a book club even if it were just the two of us.

After a few days of thinking about this I wondered who else was out there wanting the same thing.  I decided to ask around on Facebook.  The response was overwhelming.  We had over a dozen other people to respond from all sorts of different backgrounds.  These people who may have never met otherwise will now come together and hopefully share some good times.  We are starting a book club!

For our first read we chose  Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng.  It has been in my to be read pile for a while so I am excited to finally dive in!  I will post a review as soon as I finish.

If you are looking around for a book club among your friend group I say take the leap and start your own. You never know who may want to join you!


Monday, June 3, 2019

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb

This memoir by Lori Gottlieb isn't normally the type of book I would pick up but I am glad I did.  Fiction is normally my go to for reading but I decided to branch out after seeing this book on Book of the Month Club.

Maybe You Should Talk To Someone  follows the story of a therapist, her patients, and her own struggles in therapy as a patient.  It is a beautiful combination of funny and heartfelt at the same time.  It makes you take a look at yourself but in an nonthreatening sort of way.  Without realizing it this book was exactly what I needed.

Overall this book is a great read for someone who is looking for a laugh but also wouldn't mind getting something deeper  and you don't have to like nonfiction to appreciate this book.

The Municipalists by Seth Fried


Are you looking for a quick fun read? Then this book is for you! It is one of those books that doesn't require a whole lot of thinking but will make you laugh. Great for an easy summer read.  The story is set in Metropolis where life seems pretty great until a domestic computer based terrorist attack strikes.  It is now up to Henry with the help of a supercomputer AI named Owen to solve the case.

Henry is an unlikely protagonist due to his antisocial behaviors.  He simply doesn't understand people.  Owen is the contrast to this idea.  He is funny, smart, and intuitive but can also make bad decisions in the name of having fun.

If the thought of an AI drinking alcohol, making corny jokes, and flirting with others while dealing with an antisocial human sounds funny to you then check this book out!  It is a great read!





Sunday, June 2, 2019

Serafina and the Seven Stars by Robert Beatty


Image from Goodreads



I got a chance to read a sample of the new Robert Beatty book Serafina and the Seven Stars.  This series has a way of capturing young readers in a unique way.  As an educator I have seen several reluctant 4th and 5th grade readers become hooked by this series!  After reading the first chapter of book 4 I see that this book captures the reader quickly and will be an awesome continuation to an already great series.  

This novel continues the story of Serifina and Brayden and their journeys while living, and protecting, Biltmore House.  Children love that this is a fantasy book but set in a real place that they can look up or even visit!

Overall I feel that this is a great read for summer to help keep reading and realize that reading is fun!)

Check it out on Goodreads. 

I received this e-book ARC of Serafina and the Seven Stars - Chapter Sampler by Robert Beatty through Net Galley from Disney-Hyperion in exchange for a truthful review.



Saturday, June 1, 2019

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles



If I had to use one word to describe A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles it would be beautiful. This is just such a eloquently written book that it will bring tears to your eyes. Its wonderful.

The book starts off in 1922, with Count Alexander Rostov having to adjust to life after he was sentenced to "house arrest" at the Metropol. This grand hotel is right across the street from the Kremlin. The Count has a front row seat and yet is cut off from the world during a time of great change in his country. The story follows his life in the decades following his arrest and how somethings change and others remain the same.

This is a slow read but worth it. There are numerous references to literature, art, and music of the time period (as well as periods prior) and I found myself researching all sorts of things while reading this book. This does slow the progression of the story but definitely worth it in my opinion. Great book!

Early Riser by Jasper Fforde




Jasper Fforde's Early Riser is a unique story. Set in alternate Wales, this story takes us to a time and place where the extreme cold forces humanity to hibernate to survive the winter. There are a few, however, who must remain awake to keep everything going. This story follows Charlie and his "first winter" and all of the strange things he encounters during this time.


When starting this novel I felt lost several times during the first 100 pages and had to go back and reread to figure out what I was missing. After this, I fell in love with this fantasy world and story that was unlike anything I had read before.


If you are willing to put in the work on the first 100 pages it will pay off in the end. Overall this is a great read!

Book of the Month Club Picks - June 2019



Here are my picks for June 2019 Book of the Month Club.  Of all of my picks this month I am most excited about Recursion by Blake Crouch. His first book, Dark Matter, was so good that I lost hours of sleep because I couldn't put it down!  I am hopeful that this one will do the same!

Not a member of Book of the Month Club?  Check it out here!

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

WOW! Is all I can say about this novel.  Jason Dessen is a guy who is pretty happy with how his life has turned out so far.  Unfortunately someone is about to enter his life and turn it upside down. This book will take the reader on a ride they won't soon forget!

 Crouch's combination science fiction/thriller had me staying up late at night to find out what happens next. The physics elements in the story anchored it in a way that made you believe that the story could actually happen.  This is the best book I have read in a long time!  It hits the my top favorites of all time list and I am excited to read Blake Crouch's next book Recursion  in June!

The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak



The Impossible Fortress  by Jason Rekulak is one of my favorite reads this year so far! It was released in February 2017 but I didn't discover it until May 2019. I was on my Book of the Month Club account and stumbled upon this beautiful "love letter to the 1980s."

Its a coming of age story about a teenage boy who is trying to balance changing friendships, girls, and his love of computer coding.  It is set in the 1980's and full of references that will delight any 80's lover (like myself).   This was a quick read and kept my attention throughout the entire novel.

One of the best parts of the novel isn't actually in the novel itself. In the story, the protagonist is working on coding  game for a gaming contest. The author has included a copy of the finished game on his website at http://jasonrekulak.com/.  With the notes in the back of the book not only are you invited to play the game but encouraged to beat his high score of 11,358. I have yet to do this but will continue to try!

Overall, if you are looking for a quick, fun read that will take you back to you 1980's childhood, this book is for you.

One by One

This is the second book I have read by Ruth Ware, and I am confident I have found one of my favorite authors!  One by One starts with a gro...