Welcome to Novel Ideas April 2017 edition. Novel Ideas is a round up of mini reviews for other books we read this month, as well as snippets of future posts and other bookish news.
From the Stacks: Kirsten
Happily Ever After by Kiera Cass: I picked up this compilation of novellas to read when Push got to heavy. It was fun to see the world of The Selection expanded upon. It wasn’t as good as the main set of novels but I enjoyed the drawings and the map of Illea. Maxon’s chapters were my favorite (obviously!) 3.5 stars.
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders: Strange, but probably one of the most imaginative novels I have ever experienced. It’s about the night that Abraham Lincoln buried this son and takes place entirely in the cemetery. I listened via Audible which was great because they used 166 voices including David Sedaris, Lena Dunham, Ben Stiller, Julianne Moore, Susan Sarandon, Kat Dennings and Don Cheadle among others. Not my speed but I can see this story being a big award winner this year. 3 stars
Push by Sapphire: An amazing, amazing novel. Yes, I am late to the game but this is a must read. It is incredibly difficult, but such a worth while read. Have your tissues ready because the tears will come through out this novel of a 16 year old from Harlem in the 80s. 5 stars
The Lake House by Kate Morton: I’ve been reading this novel on and off for months. I kept putting it down to read library books that were on hold, so it was hard for me to get into the story. However, the last 150 or so pages of the novel, I couldn’t put down. I love this author and I’m looking forward to reading The Secret Keeper and The House at Riverton – hopefully over the summer. 4 stars.
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard: I have been on some weird dystopian kick recently – which is funny because I had to be forced to read the Hunger Games (see post.) Now I can’t seem to stop! I’m sure I’ll switch gears this summer but right now I’m loving this story. In the war against Silvers and Reds, Mare Barrow is special and so is this book. The ending was a total shock! I couldn’t put it down. (4 stars.)
Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard: I could not believe I found a copy of this at Cathy’s Half Price Books just as I was finishing Red Queen. Of course I picked it up and dove right in. This novel wasn’t as good as the previous one, it could have been shorter frankly. I have high hoped for the third in the series though. I purchased WAY too many books this month but King’s Cage is on my May reading list. 3 stars.
Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon: I read this after Jackie recommended it. A friend of ours recommended it to her and is hosting a book club about it this month. We hope to blog more about this book in May. 3.5 stars.
The Vacationers by Emma Straub: A great beach read about a family vacation. Filled with skeletons and secrets, this is total escapism reading. 3 stars.
In addition to King’s Cage, I’m hoping to read the Night Circus and a few Austen related books. I read The Circle this month and will discuss it next week’s Book to Screen after Jackie and I see the movie. Stay tuned for our Mother’s day posts too!
From the Stacks: Jackie
The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick: If you liked “A Man Called Ove”, you will love this book. A recent widower finds a bracelet that belonged to his wife that he does not recognize. As he follows the clues of the charms, he learns about his wife and himself. This is a sweet and charming book that was a pleasure to read. 4.5 stars
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult: This recent book by Jodi Picoult deals with racism in the United States. I have mixed feelings about this book. This is a difficult topic to breech and an important one to talk about. I liked the story and the ending but somehow, it didn’t reach the depths that I felt it should have. 3.5 stars.
One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood: What should be a book too sad to read it a fantastic book about love, growth and discovery. This is the story of a 104 year old woman who befriends a strange and wonderful boy. Their story is told after the boys sudden death. I loved every minute of this book. Five stars
Stranger than Fan Fiction by Chris Colfer: I love how Chris Colfer is able to talk about the LGBTQ community in such a way that the characters are completely relatable, not sensationalized. This story is deeper than it appears. I really enjoyed it. 4 stars
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie – This is a classic that is being made into a movie this year. I really wanted to read it before the movie came out. So smart and fun. This was a quick book but a great one. 3.5 stars
The Rackateer by John Grisham– This was a good book to listen to on a long car ride. Definitely not one of Grisham’s best but enjoyable. 3 stars
I will be doing a review of Cinder by Melissa Meyer and giving some recommendations based on the series. I also plan on reading Everything, Everything. Look for our review on Books to Screen. I’m hoping I will be able to finally read Americanah.
Beyond the Bookends:
If you follow us on instagram, you know we tried the new Starbuck’s Unicorn Frappuccino. Have you tried it yet? Did you see this post by the barista begging people not to try it? Now I feel kinda bad that I tried it 😐
Want to see the best bedtime story upgrade ever? Watch Ludacris rap Llama Llama Red Pajama.