I’m not working. I have zero responsibilities – besides looking for a job. I’ve been spending a lot of time at the pool. And have been spending so much time reading! If you’ve been around for a bit, you know that reading is my next escape, next to running. There are few things I love more than getting lost in a great book – and I’m known for knocking them out daily.
So, here are the books that I’ve picked up lately at the library and my brief thoughts on them – I don’t do reviews, they’re too lengthy and I’m really bad at reading for reviewing – I just read to read!
Liane Moriarty – Big Little Lies
Madeline is a force to be reckoned with. She’s funny and biting, passionate, she remembers everything and forgives no one. Her ex-husband and his yogi new wife have moved into her beloved beachside community, and their daughter is in the same kindergarten class as Madeline’s youngest (how is this possible?). And to top it all off, Madeline’s teenage daughter seems to be choosing Madeline’s ex-husband over her. (How. Is. This. Possible?).
Celeste is the kind of beautiful woman who makes the world stop and stare. While she may seem a bit flustered at times, who wouldn’t be, with those rambunctious twin boys? Now that the boys are starting school, Celeste and her husband look set to become the king and queen of the school parent body. But royalty often comes at a price, and Celeste is grappling with how much more she is willing to pay.
New to town, single mom Jane is so young that another mother mistakes her for the nanny. Jane is sad beyond her years and harbors secret doubts about her son. But why? While Madeline and Celeste soon take Jane under their wing, none of them realizes how the arrival of Jane and her inscrutable little boy will affect them all.
My thoughts: This was an easy read that had a twist at the end that I wasn’t expecting. I’m a fan of this author so I grabbed it when I saw it on the shelf and I’m happy I did. Overall, good story line and intriguing read that made me want to figure out what happened from the beginning.
Liane Moriarty – Three Wishes
From Goodreads: Australian triplets Lyn, Cat, and Gemma Kettle are about to turn thirty-three and one is pregnant, one has just had her life turned upside down, and one is only just keeping hers from skidding off the fast lane. Meanwhile, their divorced parents have been behaving very oddly indeed.
In this family comedy by Liane Moriarty, we follow the three Kettle sisters through their tumultuous thirty-third year — as they deal with sibling rivalry and secrets, revelations and relationships, unfaithful husbands and unthinkable decisions, and the fabulous, frustrating life of forever being part of a trio.
My thoughts: There were definitely some unexpected twists in here that kept me reading. Overall, similar to the previous one, an easy read that drew me in enough to keep me reading.
John Green – Paper Towns
From Goodreads: Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs into his life—dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows. After their all-nighter ends, and a new day breaks, Q arrives at school to discover that Margo, always an enigma, has now become a mystery. But Q soon learns that there are clues—and they’re for him. Urged down a disconnected path, the closer he gets, the less Q sees the girl he thought he knew…
My thoughts: I was definitely more inclined to pick this one up because it was recently released in theaters. (I like reading books before the movies come out, because let’s be honest, the book is always better). I thought this book was written well and I loved the mystery aspect of it, but Green portrayed it in a fun, making jokes way rather than in a “OMG we need to figure this out” type of way. I’ll probably check out the movie next, because, why not.
Jessica Knoll – Luckiest Girl Alive
From Goodreads: As a teenager at the prestigious Bradley School, Ani FaNelli endured a shocking, public humiliation that left her desperate to reinvent herself. Now, with a glamorous job, expensive wardrobe, and handsome blue blood fiancé, she’s this close to living the perfect life she’s worked so hard to achieve.
But Ani has a secret.
There’s something else buried in her past that still haunts her, something private and painful that threatens to bubble to the surface and destroy everything.
With a singular voice and twists you won’t see coming, Luckiest Girl Aliveexplores the unbearable pressure that so many women feel to “have it all” and introduces a heroine whose sharp edges and cutthroat ambition have been protecting a scandalous truth, and a heart that’s bigger than it first appears.
The question remains: will breaking her silence destroy all that she has worked for—or, will it at long last, set Ani free?
My thoughts: Okay, so the plot twist wasn’t what I was expecting, but when it’s compared to a “Gone Girl”, I was expecting way more. It wasn’t as intense and page turning as Gone Girl, so I wouldn’t put the two on the same level. Definitely was an interesting read; it touches on tough, sometimes disturbing topics – similar to other Gillian Flynn books (Dark Places, Sharp Objects) Overall, a decent summertime read.
Jane Green – Summer Secrets
From Goodreads: June, 1998: At twenty seven, Catherine Coombs, also known as Cat, is struggling. She lives in London, works as a journalist, and parties hard. Her lunchtimes consist of several glasses of wine at the bar downstairs in the office, her evenings much the same, swigging the free booze and eating the free food at a different launch or party every night. When she discovers the identity of the father she never knew she had, it sends her into a spiral. She makes mistakes that cost her the budding friendship of the only women who have ever welcomed her. And nothing is ever the same after that.
June, 2014: Cat has finally come to the end of herself. She no longer drinks. She wants to make amends to those she has hurt. Her quest takes her to Nantucket, to the gorgeous summer community where the women she once called family still live. Despite her sins, will they welcome her again? What Cat doesn’t realize is that these women, her real father’s daughters, have secrets of their own. As the past collides with the present, Cat must confront the darkest things in her own life and uncover the depths of someone’s need for revenge.
My thoughts: I really liked this book. It kept me reading and wanting to figure out how Cat’s life would turn out. It’s a tough subject matter to write about, but Green does a good job of really diving in to Cat’s character. Overall, two thumbs up.
S.J. Watson – Before I Go To Sleep
From Goodreads: As I sleep, my mind will erase everything I did today. I will wake up tomorrow as I did this morning. Thinking I’m still a child, thinking I have a whole lifetime of choice ahead of me…
Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love–all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story.
Welcome to Christine’s life.
My thoughts: I. Could. Not. Put. It. Down. I had to know what was going on and had to figure out how it ended. I finished this in less than 24 hours. Loved it. Now I’m scared to see the movie.
So there you have it! I’ve read all the ones listed above in the past week or two… And in my recent trip to the library (aka an hour ago), I snagged these four:
S.J. Watson – Second Life
Jane Green – Saving Grace
Harper Lee – Go Set A Watchman
Paula Hawkins – The Girl On The Train
Plan on them being finished in the next week – maybe week and a half since I have a wedding to be in this weekend 😉
And speaking of books – I recently saw 2 books that were turned in to movies:
- The Giver
- I was curious to see this because it was one of my all time favorite books that was part of our schooling curriculum – honestly, I don’t remember much of it, since we read it in 7th grade, but I do remember that I loved it.
- The movie: I thought was pretty good. Since I can’t remember much of the book, the movie was kind of a blank slate for me but I liked the futuristic aspect of it and could appreciate how it could stir up some discussion, had I read the book more recently.
- I was a fan. I’ve heard mixed reviews, and maybe it’s just my love for the character that plays Four, but I enjoyed the movie. Again, I haven’t read the book in awhile and I’m sort of one of those – read to read, not to remember every budding detail – so I thought it included everything that needed to be included for those non-readers to get the idea of what’s going on.
Do you generally like books turned in to movies? What’s your favorite?