Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Summer Reading Book Reviews

I always make a summer reading list and do a much better job finishing books during the summer. So far, I am ready to review three books. The first is "The World in Half" by Cristina Henriquez. It's the story of a young woman whose mother has Alzheimer's Disease, which sets her off on a quest to find her biological father and discover her paternal heritage in Panama. It was beautifully written, and I enjoyed the insight into a country about which I knew very little.  I would definitely recommend it and would give it 4 out of 5 stars. I also read "Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail" by Cheryl Strayed.  It's a memoir about a woman who sets off the hike a trail that runs the length of California and Oregon. It's an interesting read, and I enjoyed the tales she had to tell. But, I don't think the author accomplished her purpose of showing a life changing experience. She told us it changed her life, but didn't really show us how it worked all that well. I'll give it 3 out of 5 starts.  The final book to review is "Let's Pretend this Never Happened" by Jenny Lawson. It's also a memoir and tells the story of her life, growing up in a very poor, very eccentric family and into adulthood.  Some of her stories have literally made me laugh out loud. The author has a fairly famous blog, "The Blogess," and many of her chapters read like funny blog posts.  I'm a little of a third of the way through it. While I enjoy reading it, there's not really a driving narrative, and I'll probably just dip into it now and again during the rest of the summer. So far, I'd give it 4 out of 5 stars.  The other books on my summer reading list that are already on my ipad are: "The Art of Fielding" by Chad Harbach and "When God Was a Rabbit" by Sarah Winman. I have "Middlesex" by Jeffrey Eugenides in actual book form to finish, and my book group book for August is The Night Circus" by Erin Morgenstern.  That's probably plenty, but some other books in which I am interested are The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff, Freedom by Jonathan Franzen, Home by Toni Morrison, Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea, Night Road by Kristin Hannah, and We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver.
So, have you done any reading this summer? Any books to pick or pan? Any opinions on the ones I've reviewed or that are on my list?

11 comments:

Amy said...

I read a lot more in the holidays as well - I seem to be able to justify lazing away days on end reading and sitting by the pool or another source of water!

Cheri said...

I've finished the first two of the Fifty Shades trilogy and will read the third at the beach. Just had to see for myself what the fuss was all about. I'm also struggling my way through Pride and Prejudice. While I usually enjoy the older English novels, I just haven't yet gotten into the story line of this one. So far it's a bunch of gossip and no action.

Sian said...

That's an interesting, wide ranging list. Plenty of new recommendatiuons for me among your choices, though I have read and enjoyed Middlesex.

Becky said...

I've read When God was a Rabbit and really enjoyed it. On the flight to the States I read One Day which I enjoyed but it had a twist I wasn't expecting!

laurie said...

i have read several books this summer! three of my favorites are "brazzaville beach" by william boyd, "a cup of tea" by amy ephron, and "house of sand and fog" by andre dubus III.

Karen said...

I've read a lot more this summer as well. I've finished five books, three I can recommend: Canada by Richard Ford, The World Without You by Joshua Henkin, and Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake by Anna Quindlen. I've just started The Cost of Hope which I'm also enjoying. Our book group read The Sister Brothers, which I liked, but it's probably not for everyone.

Nathalie said...

I always enjoy checking people reading suggestions and I will be checking some of these out. You are the second blogger I read today who talked about The Art of Fielding so I might have to go with that one first. I am laboring to finish "Wolf Hall" but also just finished "The end of the alphabet" which was a short book with an interesting concept (especially for memory keepers...) - Enjoy your summer reading!

Melissa said...

The World in Half sounds interesting - I think I'll add it to my list.

I read Night Road with my book club last year & enjoyed it. I often enjoy young adult fiction & am finishing the Inheritance Cycle books right now.

Gloria said...

Hi Rinda. In fact I have read a lot of books this year and the year isn't even over. After seeing what you wrote about The World In Half, I just had to see what it was about. I d/l on my Kindle and just got done with it. I couldn't put it down, I truly was in Panama and in Chicago and felt close to all parties involved. Thanks for mentioning the book. I too soon will make a list of the books I've read this year and do a post on it. I don't do review but I can either recommend or not. Take care.

ComfyMom~Stacey said...

I'm still plowing my way through the contemporary mysteries. Just tossed aside one featuring a fisherman. Just could not get into it.

I loved Let's Pretend This Never Happened!

Connie said...

Maria,

Its good to hear from you. I would say that I'm keeping my head above water but I am still upright and that counts for alot these days.
I am very sorry to hear about your husband. " Let not your heart be troubled" My brother-in-law had this same cancer about 5 years ago or more and he is doing well and cancer free. You are in my prayers. Why don't you come to altered books night August 15th. We would love to see you. Beautiful pictures of Spain by the way.
Connie