• Book Review: Hyperion

    Author: Dan Simmons

    Rating: 2/5 stars

    This was a re-read.

    I remember being amazed the first time I read this. The way the stories all wove together, the fear of the Shrike. I thought it was genius! All of which, for the most part, remains true.

    However, I had overlooked the gore and the religious ‘discussions’ – if that’s what we want to call them. I must have, cuz here they are – front and center. As a religious person, a Christian, I got a creepy, uneasy feeling anticipating the overall arc of the story so I went on line, checked and yep- I will not be continuing with the series.

    This book and this series is not for me.

    Onto the next book on my TBR…

  • Book Review: The Summer of Broken Rules

    Author: K.L. Walther

    Rating: 3/5 stars

    Book Blurb:

    Meredith’s family’s annual game of assassin at Martha’s Vineyard during a summer wedding is the perfect chance to honor her sister’s legacy, and finally join the world again. But when she forms an alliance with a cute groomsman, she’s at risk of losing both the game … and her heart.

    When Meredith Fox lost her sister, Claire, eighteen months ago, she shut everyone out. But this summer she’s determined to join the world again.

    The annual family vacation to Martha’s Vineyard seems like the perfect place to reconnect. Her entire extended family is gathering for a big summer wedding, and although Meredith is dateless after being unexpectedly dumped, she’s excited to participate in the traditional Fox family game of assassin that will take place during the week of wedding festivities. Claire always loved the game, and Meredith is determined to honor her legacy.

    But when Meredith forms an assassin alliance with a cute groomsman, she finds herself getting distracted. Meredith tries to focus on the game and win it for her sister, but she can’t help falling for him. And as the week progresses, she realizes she’s not only at risk of losing the game, but also her heart.

    This was an ok read for me.

    This book dealt with the subject of grief as Meredith’s sister passed away a year or so before this summer trip/wedding. The subject is handled well, though Meredith’s actions at times were frustrating in how she dealt with those that reached out to her. But that is grief isn’t it? Everyone handles it differently.

    The romance was meh for me. It felt stilted and not a lot of chemistry.

    Where this book nailed the landing was in how the author made Martha’s Vineyard come alive on the page. It was its own character and I looked forward to reading the book MORE for the scenery than the plot, which is rare for me. Definitely a great summer book in that sense, it made me want to visit.

    So a half hearted Recommend! from me.

  • Book Review: Recursion

    Author: Blake Crouch

    Rating: 4/5 stars

    Book Blurb: Reality is broken.
     
    At first, it looks like a disease. An epidemic that spreads through no known means, driving its victims mad with memories of a life they never lived. But the force that’s sweeping the world is no pathogen. It’s just the first shock wave, unleashed by a stunning discovery—and what’s in jeopardy is not our minds but the very fabric of time itself.
     
    In New York City, Detective Barry Sutton is closing in on the truth—and in a remote laboratory, neuroscientist Helena Smith is unaware that she alone holds the key to this mystery . . . and the tools for fighting back.
     

    Together, Barry and Helena will have to confront their enemy—before they, and the world, are trapped in a loop of ever-growing chaos.

    This was good!

    This book led to some great conversations about time travel with my husband. I told him I wanted to discuss some of the book’s science behind time travel and he said, “Are we using Back to the Future rules or no?”

    So no, we are not neuroscientists.

    You also could have done a drinking game for the times “We tried… and we failed,” was said by the main characters in the book. Goodness gracious.

    So my review? Oh yeah… this was a solid thriller. I did not know how this story would resolve and I liked that. I read it quickly, once you start the last 100 pages or so just cancel what you have planned until you are done. I also liked how Crouch made the science accessible for us Back to the Future fans in the vein of Michael Crichton and Anthony Weir. Though I still question if things would play out the way Crouch says it would…

    But again, I’m not a neuroscientist. I don’t even know how a flux capacitor works.

    Recommend!

    Definitely recommend!

  • August 2022 TBR!

    Here is my TBR for August!

    I was having a discussion with my husband and he asked me how many unread books I have. As I was carefully avoiding giving the answer, I thought about a way to work down my TBR. As a result, I am committed to reading the oldest books on my TBR in order, one after the other. When one finishes, just start the next. There is enough variety so as not to get bored. We will see how it goes.

    The only re-read is Hyperion – this was a five star read for me a few years ago. I want to finish the Hyperion Cantos this year and I have committed to doing so. I find I start series and love them – but I never finish them cuz I’m off to the new and shiny. So I have a whole bunch of unfinished series, which is frustrating. I am going to fix that.

    Happy reading!

  • Friday Reads!!! 7/29/22

    Happy Friday!

    This is what I am currently reading. I am over half way through them and will review them when I am done.

    As you can see I switched up my TBR a little. Library holds came in!

    Biggest surprise so far? Recursion ! Oh my goodness – so good! I have enjoyed Blake Crouch’s books in the past and will definitely pick up his latest.

    Enjoy Your Weekend and Happy Reading!

  • Book Review: Survive the Night

    Author: Riley Sager

    Rating: 2/5 stars

    Book Blurb: It’s November 1991. Nirvana’s in the tape deck, George H. W. Bush is in the White House, and movie-obsessed college student Charlie Jordan is in a car with a man who might be a serial killer.

    Josh Baxter, the man behind the wheel, is a virtual stranger to Charlie. They met at the campus ride board, each looking to share the long drive home to Ohio. Both have good reasons for wanting to get away. For Charlie, it’s guilt and grief over the shocking murder of her best friend, who became the third victim of the man known as the Campus Killer. For Josh, it’s to help care for his sick father—or so he says.
     
    The longer she sits in the passenger seat, the more Charlie notices there’s something suspicious about Josh, from the holes in his story about his father to how he doesn’t want her to see inside the trunk. As they travel an empty, twisty highway in the dead of night, an increasingly anxious Charlie begins to think she’s sharing a car with the Campus Killer. Is Josh truly dangerous? Or is Charlie’s jittery mistrust merely a figment of her movie-fueled imagination?
     
    One thing is certain—Charlie has nowhere to run and no way to call for help. Trapped in a terrifying game of cat and mouse played out on pitch-black roads and in neon-lit parking lots, Charlie knows the only way to win is to survive the night.

    This was not a win for me.

    I wanted an edge of your seat thriller with twists I couldn’t see coming. I had read about Sager’s reputation and was hoping this would be a good fit. It was not. So much of this was predictable. Some of the twists made no sense – to explain, this book had multiple POVs. Sometimes the POV did not fit what you later learn the character knew all along.

    I should have known when Charlie got into the car of a strange man when there is an active serial killer on the loose, that I would just be screaming at the book, or taking deep sighs of frustration throughout the whole thing.

    I’m sure there’s better thrillers out there.

    I am not completely turned off by Sager though, there was enough here to make me want to pick up another book. This just may have been the one that didn’t gel with me.

  • BOOK REVIEW- BEHIND CLOSED DOORS

    Author: B.A. Paris

    Rating: 3/5 stars

    Book Blurb:

    Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth; she has charm and elegance. He’s a dedicated attorney who has never lost a case; she is a flawless homemaker, a masterful gardener and cook, and dotes on her disabled younger sister. Though they are still newlyweds, they seem to have it all. You might not want to like them, but you do. You’re hopelessly charmed by the ease and comfort of their home, by the graciousness of the dinner parties they throw. You’d like to get to know Grace better.

    But it’s difficult, because you realize Jack and Grace are inseparable.

    Some might call this true love. Others might wonder why Grace never answers the phone. Or why she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. Or why she never seems to take anything with her when she leaves the house, not even a pen. Or why there are such high-security metal shutters on all the downstairs windows.

    Some might wonder what’s really going on once the dinner party is over, and the front door has closed.

    This book had me suspending my belief in all kinds of ways. I thought, that just doesn’t make any sense, why would they… more than once. With no forthcoming explanation. That being said, the author did an amazing job of creating a feeling of claustrophobic unease that compelled me to keep turning the pages. This book does its job as a thriller.

    That ending. Wow. Not that it wasn’t predictable, just those last pages were… wow.

    I will read more from this author.

    Recommend!

  • Book Review- How to Say I Love You Out Loud

    Author: Karole Cozzo

    Rating: 3/5 stars

    Book Blurb: When Jordyn Michaelson’s autistic brother joins her at her elite school, she’s determined not to let anyone know they’re related. Even if that means closing herself off to all her closest friends, including charming football stud Alex Colby. But despite her best intentions, she just can’t shake the memory of kissing Alex last summer, and the desire to do it again.
    Can Jordyn find the courage to tell Alex how she really feels—and the truth about her family—before he slips away forever?

    First, I LOVE this cover. I enjoyed carrying this book around. It has summer vibes.

    This was a good read. The author doesn’t shy away from the emotions Jordyn goes through as she is dealing with her autistic brother. Some of this book makes you uncomfortable battling the tendency to judge how you “should” feel vs. the reality. There is a beautiful part at the end that attempted to put you in the shoes of her brother Phillip, it made me cry.

    This book does have the normal angsty teen romance. Those will-they-or-won’t-they moments. But it is the handling of the relationship between Jordyn and her autistic brother, and the rest of the family for that matter, that elevates this book.

    Recommend!

    Note: The author has another book where the love interest is in a wheelchair, How to Keep Rolling After a Fall. I definitely recommend that book as well!

  • DNF – The Singles Game

    I could not even with this book…

    I made it 60 percent of the way through and the main character just did something so vapid… and I was already trying so hard to like her. The selfishness, the narcissism, ugh.

    There are too many books waiting to be read for me to waste another paragraph.

    Next!!!!

  • JULY TBR 2022

    Since I started this blog late -July there are only a few books I have left to read. These are the books left on my TBR for the month:

    I am about 100 pages into The Singles Game.

    I have already read 100 pages into Red Mars and really liked it, but that was so long ago I am just going to re-start it again. I have no doubt this book will probably take me into August, and I am ok with that. As I am trying to get back into my sci-fi roots, I paired it with The City of Ember which is a middle grade sci-fi, dystopian book I have been wanting to read.

    On the lighter side, for YA contemporary I am reading How to Say I Love You Out Loud and The Summer of Broken Rules.