Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Book Reviews – the March Edition

It is the middle of April and I’m posting my book reviews. What in the world has gotten into me, being all efficient for a change.
 

Daughter of the Morning Star (Walt Longmire #17) ★★★★★, by Craig Johnson. Jaya Long, a star high school basketball player, has been receiving death threats, which started after her sister disappeared. Walt is enlisted to be her “bodyguard” in the hope that his notoriety will cause people to notice the plight of disappearing Indian women. Of course, he solves the mystery (the mystery of the death threats and the sister's disappearance, not the mystery of  the disappeared Indian women - that is ongoing) with the help of his friend Henry and some Indian mysticism. As usual, an excellent book – very different than what you might expect from a book about a western sheriff.
 

An American Marriage ★★★★, by Tayari Jones.  Roy and Celestial are practically newlyweds when their lives are turned upside down by a random encounter. The book tells their story, through letters, and through the eyes of each of the three main characters (yes, there’s a triangle). At one point I was pretty sure that I didn’t like any of them. But the story was very engaging, and the ending was unexpected (and satisfactory to me).
 

Abandoned in Death (In Death #54) ★★★★★, by J.D. Robb. As usual, this book starts with a murder. But pretty quickly it turns into a search for missing women. The clock is ticking (when is the clock ever not ticking?). This was another satisfactory edition of the Eve Dallas series. I find it hard to believe that I’ve read 54 of them (and a few years ago I reread them all – sheesh!).  
 

Shoutin' in the Fire: An American Epistle ★★★★★, by Danté Stewart. This is a story of how Dante’ Stewart learned to love blackness. He grew up steeped in the Pentecostal tradition, but when he went to play football at Clemson he turned away from that legacy and embraced white evangelicalism. He worked hard to fit into that world, but when there were more and more unfounded killings of black people he slowly began to realize that that world wouldn’t be there for him or his black brothers and sisters. I first came to know Dante’ through his amazing Instagram posts (here is a link to an example). I listened to the audio version of this book, which was read by him, and it was excellent.
 

The House in the Cerulean Sea ★★★★★, by T.J. Klune. “Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.” Linus is summoned by Extremely Upper Management and ordered to go to a remote island and check on the status of the EXTRA ordinary magical youth kept there. This book is just magical. I loved every little thing about it – how very very good Linus is, how each child has a distinct personality separate from whatever their magical “gift” is, the diversity of the personalities, and the lovely little twist at the end. READ IT! (Sorry to shout.) 
           
I’m pretty sure I’ll have far fewer books to review next month. I’ve only finished one so far. I got all of these books to read during Lent and then I totally rebelled and only read parts of them. Perhaps now that Easter is over I’ll go back to them. Maybe I didn’t like being bossed by the Lent Fairy (is there a Lent Fairy?). ANYWAY, what are you reading?

10 comments:

  1. I've looked at The House in the Cerulean Sea several times but haven't checked it out yet. Maybe now I will. I just finished The Bees by Laline Paull, a story of the hive and a low caste sanitation worker who saves the day. It was pretty good.

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    1. Ooo - I'll add that one to the list. I enjoyed Cerulean Sea so much that I'm thinking about buying the book to read (I listened to the audio & that was excellent).

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  2. The House in the Cerulean Sea was different - wasn't it? I dont think I liked it as much as everyone else - but I do want to read the follow up
    I remember really enjoying An American Marriage - its been awhile since I read that one

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    1. I don't think I knew there was a follow up! Excellent!

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  3. Most of the books really grab me.

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  4. I've read 'Under the Whispering Door' by TJ Klune. I will have to try that one also. And a new 'in Death' book. Going to the library next!

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    1. I'm going to have to check out other TJ Klune books - I thought this one was fabulous.

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  5. That last one sounds very promising for our library! Is it YA or even Middle School appropriate, do you think?

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    1. Yes! In fact, someone on Instagram was listening to the audio with her whole family. I think her kids are upper elementary/middle school ages. One thing that I loved about it is there are a couple of same sex relationships that are treated as if that is no big deal. Very refreshing.

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2022 Project 365 – Week Twenty

This has been an absolutely lovely weekend! My cousin’s daughter got married and the wedding was gorgeous – stay tuned for lots of pictures....