It’s Always the Husband – Review

It’s Always the Husband was a page flippin’ contradiction for me. There were parts I loved and thought were clever and parts I hated. My feelings were similar to the traits and relationships of the characters themselves.
Aubrey, Kate, and Jenny come from different worlds, placed together as roommates in their first year of college. Looking forward to new starts and the best years of their lives, the trio forms an unlikely friendship despite the odds being against them. One girl is poor as dirt from the other side of the country, one is a middle class “townie” with high ambitions, and the other has friends in high places with the world bowing at her feet. The story switches perspectives from past perspective to present day, 20 years after the girls’ freshman year. It follows up with their married lives and their mysterious strained relationship from events happening in their early college days. As we delve into each character’s psyche at different times, we unearth new tidbits about their less than stellar friendship, despite the women still classifying themselves as best friends.  Continue reading “It’s Always the Husband – Review”

The Language of Dying – Review

I would say this book is short and sweet, but there is nothing sweet about the bitter end of a life, sitting in a bed counting down the minutes.  Instead, I can say this short book was an honest look at what happens to families when the glue that holds them together is crumbling away.  In this case, the patriarch of the family is dying as his sons and daughters come together for his last moments on Earth. The family dynamic is challenged, the roles each sibling plays in the care of their father are not clearly defined, and the characters struggle through a situation no one knows how to properly handle.

“Even when by rights it has no place left to be, love is hard to kill.”

This was my first Sarah Pinborough book, though I want to read Behind Her Eyes, and it was right up my alley.  I love books that break apart the human psyche as it is challenged with different trials. Death is the ultimate trial, and most authors tend to shy away from discussing the topic at depth.  I love that Sarah tackled the subject, making such a bleak topic the center of her entire book without creating an incredibly depressing story.  She instead focused on the ties that bind us. Continue reading “The Language of Dying – Review”

Confess – Review

IMG_9678editedColleen Hoover is without a doubt one of my favorite authors. I found out about her and her books through a book recommendation column on my favorite German radio station in 2014 while still living in the US. Ha! I didn’t know that that particular recommendation would affect me and my love for reading so much. Sure, I was an avid reader back then (at least that’s how I saw myself as, since I read about 7 or 8 books a year), but finding out about Colleen and that genre tenfolded my book reading number. Maybe I should write a thank you note to that radio station? 🙂
Everytime Colleen announces a new book, it goes to my TBR straightaway. I don’t need a blurb or a cover; it’s Colleen Hoover, so of course I will read her new release. What CoHort wouldn’t? Confess, which was released in March 2015, was one of those books. Almost two years later, the novel was picked up for a scripted TV show by Awestruck and – guess what?! – it releases today! Yay!
In honor of today’s release, I decided to re-read Confess and publish this review for you. I made it as spoiler-free as I could. Continue reading “Confess – Review”

Infinity + One – Review

Amy Harmon…I could go on and on about this amazing lady’s talents. Since discovering her books last year, after reading The Bird and the Sword, I’ve been slowly making my way through her entire catalog. Her writing appeals to my personality so perfectly, and some of her books are among my all- time favorite reads. Her books are beautiful mix of feeling, romance, and faith. She weaves together elements within the story-line so flawlessly, I always find myself wondering how she does it. The glimpse her writing gives into her brain never fails to make me want more! Continue reading “Infinity + One – Review”

Mists of the Serengeti – Review

mistsMists of the Serengeti is not the typical book I would ditch my TBR pile for. However, after a friend gifted me this book and I saw the overwhelming number of positive reviews, I decided to jump in.  This book had everything I look for in a story– beautiful writing, plenty of emotions, educational moments, and love!  What more could a girl ask for?

“…we’re all connected in strange, mysterious ways.  Pull a thread here and a life unravels there.”

Normally, I find stories set in Africa outside of my realm of interest.  I’ve never been very inspired by African culture, environment, or history.  I’m happy to say, Mists of the Serengeti broadened my horizons in ways I wasn’t prepared for.  First, this novel completely caught me off guard by featuring albinism.  The strangest coincidence happened the day I started reading this book.  I was watching television with my husband and he pointed out an Albino basketball player in one of the games he was watching.  Later in the afternoon, he switched it to an episode of Cops (yes, interesting TV choices that day) where one of the police officers was an Albino man.  While I have personally seen a couple of people with albinism in my life, I had never given the condition much thought.  I started wondering what struggles people of African decent may face if their skin is white, and decided to start my own research. At this point, I had yet to reach the description of Scholastica walking out of the shadows in the story    my jaw was on the floor when I read it.  What are the chances of randomly seeing two people with albinism on TV, being curious about it and researching the subject, and then reading about it in a book all in the same day?  It’s not as if this is an everyday topic many of us come face-to-face with.  This odd bit of Kismet had me drawn to the story in an unforgettable way. Continue reading “Mists of the Serengeti – Review”

God-Shaped Hole – Review

When Tarryn Fisher recommends a book, I read it, like a good little sheeple should. I’ve had God-Shaped Hole on my TBR for a while, but when I saw Tarryn and Tiffanie’s live Facebook video a couple of weeks ago I bought it, finally.
Now let me start by saying, I cannot give this book a star-rating. It doesn’t feel right for this book because of Jacob:

“He believed that any work an artist puts forth which contains the truth as he or she sees it is worthy of consideration, and any commentary of the work beyond that is nothing more than pure individual opinion and should not be considered relevant to the work itself.”

With that said, let me give my irrelevant opinion. Going in, I didn’t know what to expect since I rarely read blurbs or reviews prior to reading a book. The prelude gives us an idea of what may be to come, but even with this knowledge the story still has the ability to rip readers’ hearts and guts out and stomp all over them. I will not be recovering from this book for ages, and I mean that in the best way possible.  God-Shaped Hole is funny, smart, and heartbreakingly real. I’ve never read a love story that felt as realistic as this one. Beatrice and Jacob’s relationship wasn’t the perfection that is often depicted in most contemporary books. Their arguments were how they play out for real couples    full of pride and pettiness.  Their character traits made them seem like people I know. I loved how at times, Beatrice wanted to give in to end a stand-off, but her pride wouldn’t let her.  How many times do we as humans want to say, “I love you, you idiot. Let’s be happy again,” but our egos get in the way?  Beatrice was a girl after my own heart, with her genuine personality and hate of materialistic people and the culture of Los Angeles.  I remember going on vacation to California and being most excited to visit LA, then feeling ridiculously let down afterwards. What is with all of the hype? San Francisco, on the other hand, is where it’s at. Continue reading “God-Shaped Hole – Review”

Tell Me Where it Hurts – Review

Let me tell you where it hurts, it hurts within the pages of this short book of poetry.  I’ve never rushed to write a review as quickly as I needed to with this book.  It begged to be written while the emotions were still fresh.  JR Rogue should be proud of Tell Me Where it Hurts. From the moment of reading her dedication, I knew I was going to love this book: “For the Caged Birds.  If I can sing, so can you.”  It evokes emotions I had buried and most times would rather forget. I, too, was once a caged bird. I’ve never had tears in my eyes reading poetry before, perhaps because some of these words hit me on such a personal level.  There is often so much unnecessary pain in childhood, even more if the child’s innocence is not nurtured. My heart hurt reading these poems.  It hurt for the struggles I’ve been through, but mostly, it hurt for the author.  Poems with this much raw sadness and heartbreak can only be written from personal experience.  You have to know pain to write pain. For that, I am saddened. Continue reading “Tell Me Where it Hurts – Review”