Hey! Lookie here! It's my favorite link-up day! The day we talk about books, other book lovers talk about books, and my goodreads "to read" list grows exponentially. Thanks again to Jana and Steph for making this day happen for us bookworms.
1. Paperboy by Vince Vawter - Set in the '50's, a young boy with a speech impediment takes over a paper route for a month and encounters local neighbourhood characters while learning lessons about himself and his life. It won a Newberry Medal Honor in 2014. Do kids these days read these books? Or do adults "think" kids should read them, but they don't? 2.5/5
3. Fourth of July Creek by Smith Henderson - If you are looking for a feel-good, cheerful read, this isn't it. This was a heavy one. Heart-breaking, infuriating, sometimes maddening with topics covering abuse, neglect, arson, alcoholism, child prostitution, or more not-so-pretty things...but a well-written story to evoke such emotion. If you are prepared to be emotionally spent, I recommend it. 4/5
4. The Book of Unknown Americans by Cristina Henríquez - Fantastic concept, not so fantastic delivery. Simplistic. Lacks depth. Only a couple of characters (out of so many that it was difficult to keep track of them all) were well-developed. I wanted to like this more, I wanted to care more, but I didn't. I was really disappointed that I didn't. 2/5
5. The Rise and Fall of the Gallivanters by M.J. Beaufrand - I feel a little scattered about this book. Maybe because the book is scattered. Parts I loved, parts were silly. Parts were endearing, parts were annoying. Parts were flimsy, parts weren't. I read it in a day and stayed up past my bedtime to finish it, so I was interested in it enough to discover how it all unfolded. Plus, there's a music competition and a music store ... and you know, I like music. 3/5
6. Sex, Drugs, Ratt & Roll by Stephen Pearcy with Sam Benjamin - If he'd quit calling the female groupies "trim" (or "drunken cupcakes" or "sluts"), I might have enjoyed this more. I've read my fair share of rock bios, and debauchery & sex are often very much included in them...totally fine...but for some reason, Stephen Pearcy's storytelling (or maybe it's the writer's fault) of these encounters totally turned me off. I really like RATT music still to this day. I've seen them in concert numerous times in Texas, California, and even Sheffield, England. I will still like the music, but I don't have to like Stephen Pearcy as a person. 3/5
7. Jackaby by William Ritter - From page 131: "Science and magic, beauty and bedlam, things that ought to be at odds-they just don't follow the same rules when Jackaby's involved." I talked about what I thought of this book here. 2.5/5
8. Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy - The main characters in this book are either fickle & cruel, endearing & loveable, and sometimes pathetic & lost Pretty standard for high school kids, right? I kept getting especially angry, even disgusted, at a particular character, yet I was invested in the story that I couldn't put this book down. I've said it before, I'll say it again, I like characters who are severely flawed individuals. Reading reviews on goodreads, it seems others don't like this book because they don't like the lead character. I don't have to like the character to like the journey and the story that unfolds for her. If YA is a genre you enjoy reading, I recommend this book. 4.5/5
9. The Dinner by Herman Koch - About a third of the way into the book, I was shouting in my head "get to the point!" I liked the moral dilemma faced by these characters. What annoyed me most was how overly descriptive the author was about inconsequential details, yet how vague and/or lacking of detail he was in others. I'm fine with leaving some things open to interpretation, but I wish he'd dive much deeper into that moral dilemma. 3/5
Currently reading: The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
Next up: Black-Eyed Susans, Night, My Heart and Other Black Holes, Tweak, Crank
So, whatcha been readin'?