Sunday, January 17, 2021

Monday Mini-Reviews:

I'm grateful that this weekend has been a little longer with Monday being a holiday we can spend at home. My girls are often at school on this day, which means I have an entire day to myself. But this year, they, too, have the day off.  What that means at this point in time is getting lunch from somewhere and maybe stopping at Target.  

I am also still doing some much needed cleaning out, so a trip or two to Goodwill might be in order as well.  

The extra time did give me a little bit of freedom to enjoy some new fiction titles. Check out the three below:


The Push by Ashley Audrain - this is a debut novel, and I've been hearing about it all over the blogosphere as well as on a variety of podcasts.  Sometimes I'm not interested in books that are getting a lot of hype, but I got this from Book of the Month and decided I'd give it a try.  Wow!  It's hard to put down and reads super fast. Despite Blythe's own childhood and less than affectionate mother, she vows she will be a good mom. But her daughter, Violet, is hard to deal with from the beginning.  Blythe's  husband thinks it's all in her head, and as the story unfolds and we hear Blythe's side of things, it's hard to know what is fact and what is perhaps fiction.

Shiner by Amy Jo Burns- this book's description was a turn-off to me: a father who preaches by bringing serpents and using them in his ministry, extreme poverty and a family that lives in a location so remote they don't even have an address, and men who make a career out of making moonshine.  And yet, by the time I'd read the first two pages, I knew I wanted to sit down and devour this entire book. This may be one of the hidden gems of 2020, underrated but fantastic.

Better Luck Next Time by Julia Claiborne Johnson- I'd read Johnson's Be Frank With Me and enjoyed it so this one is one I eagerly anticipated.  The premise of the book is strong: a "divorce ranch" where women go for six weeks in Reno, Nevada in 1938 to set up residency so they can obtain a divorce.  Told in the perspective of Ward, one of the ranch hands, I liked his story well enough but didn't love this book overall.  

That's my reading this past week. I'm not sure what I'm going to pick up next. I've got two non-fiction books I'm working on that I am enjoying, but I'm getting fairly close to finishing them both and wouldn't mind powering through at least one of them.   

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