Tag: classics

The Best Books I Read in May (2020)

In May, I read 33 books, bringing my total for the year up to 132 books. Some of those books were good, some were okay, some were just “meh.” But three of them were really exceptional!

Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen. Yes, this a re-read. I’m actually not sure how many times I’ve read it, but this time was was just as wonderful. I wish I could re-read this again for the first time! So many laughs at Lizzie’s wit, and so much sympathy for poor Mr. Darcy.

what unbreakable looks like
Image belongs to St. Martin’s Press.

What Unbreakable Looks Like, by Kate McLaughlin. (My review will be up on the 16th as part of the blog tour.) I don’t even know what to say about this book! It opens with the cops rescuing Lex from human trafficking, and tells the story of her life in the aftermath. This book doesn’t pull any punches with what she deals with and how she handles it, and it made me so sad that women and girls experience things like this—and also inspired me with her strength.

juniper jones
Image belongs to Wattpad Books.

The Invincible Summer of Juniper Jones, by Daven McQueen. (My review is up on the 11th.) Set in small-town Alabama in 1955, this is the story of Ethan Harper, a biracial kid raised mostly by his white father, who goes to stay with his aunt and uncle for the summer. There he meets prejudice, persecution, and Juniper Jones. Parts of this were awful to read because I know there is truth in this tale. But the friendship between Ethan and Juniper is wonderful and full of hope. (And I love this cover!)

Book Review: Of Literature and Lattes, by Katherine Reay

of literature and lattes
Image belongs to Thomas Nelson.

Title:   Of Literature and Lattes
Author:   Katherine Reay
Genre:   Fiction
Rating:   4 out of 5

Return to the cozy and delightful town of Winsome, where two people discover the grace of letting go and the joy found in unexpected change.

After fleeing her hometown three years earlier, Alyssa Harrison never planned to return. Then the Silicon Valley start-up she worked for collapsed and turned her world upside down. She is broke, under FBI investigation, and without a place to go. Having exhausted every option, she comes home to Winsome, Illinois, to regroup and move on as quickly as possible. Yet, as friends and family welcome her back, Alyssa begins to see a place for herself in this small Midwestern community.

Jeremy Mitchell moved from Seattle to Winsome to be near his daughter and to open the coffee shop he’s been dreaming of for years. Problem is, the business is bleeding money—and he’s not quite sure why. When he meets Alyssa, he senses an immediate connection, but what he needs most is someone to help him save his floundering business. After asking for her help, he wonders if something might grow between them—but forces beyond their control soon complicate their already complex lives, and the future they both hoped for is not at all what they anticipated.

With the help of Winsome’s small-town charm and quirky residents, Alyssa and Jeremy discover the beauty and romance of second chances.

I’ve read—and loved—several of Reay’s books in the past (The Brontë Plot, The Austen Escape, Dear Mr. Knightley) but I didn’t enjoy this one quite as much as those. I think it’s because this was about more than one couple and their issues. And because I wasn’t a huge fan of Alyssa. She was…really hateful to her mother and, despite wanting not be thought of as a child, she persisted in acting childish.

I learned more about the nuances of coffee than I ever imagined existed, and I did love the small-town setting here, but this didn’t feel like the Reay books I’ve read before, so I was a bit disappointed. Maybe it’s because the classic novel this is linked to is Of Mice and Men, which I’ve basically forgotten?

Katherine Reay is a bestselling author. Of Literature and Lattes is her newest novel.

(Galley courtesy of Thomas Nelson in exchange for an honest review.)

What I Read in July

Seems like I didn’t do a whole lot of reading in July.

Lady Midnight, by Cassandra Clare. (Loved it!)

chronicles

Chronicles of a Last Summer, by Yasmine El Rashidi. (Read to review.)

and I darken

And I Darken, by Kiersten White. (Read to review.)

The Dragon Round

The Dragon Round, by Stephen S. Power. (Read to review.)

an elegant facace

An Elegant Facade, by Kristi Ann Hunter. (Read to review.)

Far from the Madding Crowd, by Thomas Hardy. (My classic for the month. This one was so-so to me.)

Daring Greatly, by Brune Brown. (My spiritual book for the month.)

Trixie Belden and the Mystery Off Old Telegraph Road, by Kathryn Kenny. (This one was from my TBR pile. I loved this series when I was younger, and it’s interesting to re-read them now. So…innocent.)