My History of Reading – Sabrina

I was maybe 8 or 9 and I still remember getting a book from my mom’s best friend. I hated the book and didn’t want to read it. There were so many words, so many pages and less pictures. In elementary school I always had an A in reading, so my not wanting to read was not about my ability to read but rather about my lack of enthusiam. Crazy, I know, especially because I love reading these days and can’t picture my life without it. I guess it was just a phase or the wrong book and/or the wrong genre for me.
However, during 5th/6th grade I discovered reading books for me. IIMG_9115edited was totally obsessed with the Freche Mädchen – Freche Bücher books (~”Sassy Girls – Sassy Books”). The books were aimed at girls in their tweens or early teens. The stories were about a bunch of girlfriends who had to deal with school, parents, clothes, boys, first love and the following first heartbreak. The great thing was that the books were not written from one author alone but from many. The “Freche Mädchen – Freche Bücher” theme was only the name of the series in general. Every author then wrote their own sub-series with their own characters and stories. My goal was to own every single one of the books, there was even a tick-list at the end of each book. And since I’ve always been someone who loved lists and tick things off a list, I did just that: I ticked off the books I already had and marked the ones I wanted next. Continue reading “My History of Reading – Sabrina”

Between Shades of Gray – Review

I have been drawn to books detailing the struggles of people during World War II since I have been a child.  For that reason, I wanted a chance to read this book for years. Finally I was able to check it out through Overdrive from my library and was anxious to be transported back in time.

The story begins in Lithuania with Lina, her mother, and younger brother being deported by Soviet officers in a filthy train car to a place they had never experienced before – Siberia. Lina and her family, along with others that become family to her, are forced to work in cruel conditions at labor camps for Stalin’s regime. Lina uses her love for art as a tool to tell the story of the horrors she faced, despite the danger of her drawings being discovered. She hopes her art will help her father make his way back to her family after she finds him in a separate train car going to a different location.

In the first few pages of this story, I was confused about what was taking place because I had not seen the mention of the characters being Jewish. I even stopped reading to ask my husband, who happens to be a History major, if he could clear up my confusion. We were both stumped. Eventually I came to realize through my reading that only one of the characters was in fact, Jewish. The deportations were actually a result of “Sovietization” and the result of Communism in Russia. Citizens from the Baltic states were removed, murdered, or forced into labor camps to further the agenda of Stalin. This was an unfamiliar aspect of history to both my husband and me. Continue reading “Between Shades of Gray – Review”

The Allure of Julian Lefray- Shared Review

IMG_9259editedCan I just say, I love R.S. Grey?! When life sucks with entirely too much adulting going on (hello, responsibility), Grey’s books are a welcome distraction and escape from reality. Her writing is always fun, easy to get lost in, and witty.

The Allure of Julian Lefray was no exception! I enjoyed being able to buddy read this story with Sabrina and laugh together at the comical one-liners. We both agreed Julian was one of the dreamiest book boyfriends we’ve read of. He has practically no flaws, always thinks of the right thing to do and say, not to mention he’s Josephine’s hunky boss – ding, ding, ding, Jo hit the jackpot! Continue reading “The Allure of Julian Lefray- Shared Review”