Friday, September 30, 2016

Fall Books 2016



Time to find some good books to curl up with while I sip Pumpkin Spiced Lattes and eat pumpkin scones or donuts, or anything pumpkin really this time of year.  Here are a couple of books that I am definitely going to be reading this fall and a few that I have added to my TBR that I hope I will get a chance to read in the very near future.  

The first book I'm looking forward to is Serpents in the City by H.N. Wake.  This is the third in the Mac Ambrose series.  I have previously read A Spy Came Home the second book in the series and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I'm eager to find out what this former CIA Agent has in store for her this time around.

The next book I'll definitely be reading this fall is call Hunted by  this is the second book in her series with San Diego Homicide Detective Scarlett Fry.
Dominique L. Watson

Both of these ladies have graciously gifted me with these titles in exchange for my honest review.

Here is another book I am looking forward to reading this fall,  The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware.  I've been waiting to read this since it's release this summer.  I was supposed to read it this month with a friend, but I'm still waiting on my copy from the library.  

Another book I can't wait to get my hands on is Gayle Forman's latest called Leave Me.  Known for her YA novels this will be her first novel for adults. 

Next on my list is Swing Time by Zadie Smith.  I have had quite a few of her books on my reading list for a while and this one looks like it's going to be my first. 

And finally, my most anticipated read of the fall for me is Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly.  Normally, I'm not a big fan of non-fiction titles, but I think this will read more like a novel.  Just the description and subject matter makes me think of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.  I heard about the release for the movie before I knew it was a book.  Already have plans to read the book and see the movie when it is released.  

A few other titles on my list that I may or may not get to this fall are:

  • The Mothers by Britt Bennett
  • Faithful by Alice Hoffman
  • A Boy Made of Blocks by Keith Stuart
  • Here I Am by Jonathan Safran Foer
  • The Wonder by Emma Donoghue
I hope you will share what you are planning to read this fall in the comments below. 

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Saturday, September 17, 2016

Review: Every Fifteen Minutes by Lisa Scottoline

Every Fifteen Minutes Every Fifteen Minutes by Lisa Scottoline
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dr. Eric Parrish is the chief of psychiatry at HGH. When he receives a patient consult from his friend Dr. Fortunado in the Emergency Department, he is eager to help. Dr. Parrish meets Max who he takes on as his private patient. He is determined to help Max with his OCD. When Max's grandmother dies, Dr. Parrish is worried for his safety. When a girl that Max is fond of ends up murdered, Dr. Parrish gets even more worried. Will Dr. Parrish be able to find out if Max is behind the murder or find the real killer before it is too late?

Lisa Scottoline had me on the edge of my seat again, literally, since I listened to this book on my way back and forth from work. Just when I thought I had it all figured out, a twist is thrown right at me. Twists and turns all over the place. I loved it. Lisa Scottoline is becoming one of my favorites, with her thrillers. I first read one of her books last year and quickly I have tried to read them all. This being my fourth of hers. I highly recommend her books to all who are looking for thrillers with great twists!

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Sunday, September 11, 2016

Review: Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Here lately we hear a different story every week where a person of color has been wrong by the police or another authoritative figure in their community. Jodi Picoult tackles this issue head on. Telling the story of Ruth Jefferson, the only black nurse in the Labor and Delivery Unit at Mercy-West Haven Hospital in New Haven, Connecticut. When she is removed from the Bauer case because of the color of her skin, she's upset but continues to to do her job. When something horrible happens to the baby, Ruth has to choose between doing the job she was trained to do and fulfilling the wish of the white supremacist parents. When tragedy strikes, Ruth finds herself in the middle of a murder trial.

This book was amazing. I have been a fan of Jodi Picoult for a long time. Her books have a way of grabbing at your heart strings and make you look at the world from a different perspective. This book was no exception. I literally read this book from cover to cover. Rarely do I read the Author's Notes, but this time I did. I had to know where the inspiration for this book came from and what would make a white woman write a book about such an explosive topic in our society today. As a woman of color I felt a lot of emotions while reading this book.

Ruth Jefferson is a highly educated nurse at Mercy-West Haven Hospital. Despite being the only black woman in her department and one of the few in her neighborhood, she gets along well with her colleagues and neighbors and considers some of them friends, or so she thinks. As Ruth tells her story, I can relate to some of the struggles she faces. I was always taught not to judge people by the color of their skin. With part of my family descending from slaves and another part who owned slaves, my family is quite a mix of cultures. But when Ruth is put on trial or murder, these colleagues and neighbors were no longer her friends, they were now people who saw her as the black woman who killed a white baby.

This is an important book for everyone to read. Told from three points of view; Ruth's the nurse on trial for killing a baby; Turk, the white supremacist father of that baby; and Kennedy, the white, female public defender who is Ruth's attorney. Each character learns about themselves and the people around them over the course of this book.

I commend Jodi Picoult for tackling this difficult subject, especially during this time in our country when the subject is so relevant. As she mentions in her Author's Notes, most white authors write historical fiction about the black community, but this book fits right with today's headlines and some are even mentioned. This book helps to confirm why Jodi Picoult is one of my favorite authors.

Thank you to NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group-Ballantine for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Friday, September 2, 2016

Review: If I Was Your Girl

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Amanda Hardy is the new girl in school. The strange thing is she is really newly a girl as well. Having just left her old life behind and moving in with her father to finish her senior year, Amanda is hoping the school year will go off without any incidents. At her new school, she quickly makes friends and even meets a boy she is really interested in. Will she be able to go through keeping her secret or will her truth be revealed and she will have to relive all the horrible things she had just left behind.

When I first heard about this book, I was very intrigued by the description. When I finally got the book in my hand and read further about the author, I was a little shocked. LGBT books are not usually a genre I choose to read. I enjoyed the book and it helped to increase my awareness about these issues. I commend the author for tackling such a personal issue.

This book was hard to put down.  I felt bad for Amanda and I wanted to see her get all that she wanted in life.  I have no idea how it feels to born in the wrong body. I know when that time of the month comes around I wish I wasn't a girl, but that is a whole different story.  I empathize with those in this world that are just trying to be themselves, but find it so difficult.  Struggling with self image is something a lot of people go through, but it must be so much more difficult when the image you see is not the image you feel gender-wise.  Again thank  you to the author for telling a story that will resonate with me for a long while.

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