Okay, this week’s topic is a bit of a shameful one for us as we’ve been skimping on reviews lately—books we loved but never reviewed. Hopefully this will encourage us to get back into things.
The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
This was an impulse buy that paid off. Told from the perspectives of two teens, Natasha and Daniel, its part love story, part coming of age story with social/political commentary thrown in.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
Eleanor’s voice really carried this heartfelt novel. While it was filled with funny scenes of the protagonist clearly missing social cues or just reacting to them in unlikely ways, there was an unexpected depth to it.
The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah
Another impulse buy that paid off. This packed novel takes readers to the wilds of Alaska, following a family struggling with violence, PTSD and alcoholism. It was an intense storyline and definitely worth a second read.
Pan’s Labyrinth by Guillermo del Toro and Cornelia Funke
This YA novelization of the film was an enthralling and horrifying tale, mixed with magic and depravity. It was more convincing to me than the movie.
Know My Name by Chanel Miller
This memoir follows Chanel Miller’s experience before and after the Brock Turner case. It gives a nuanced and layered look at the trauma and the hard-won triumph that she experienced after the initial incident.
The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang
I’d heard so much about this one before I got around to reading it, and it absolutely exceeded expectations. A powerful start to a great fantasy series.
A Guide for the Perplexed by Dara Horn
Okay, I will review this one eventually. One of the best books I’ve read in years, it is filled with incredible twists and turns and two multifaceted characters. I recommend going into this one knowing as little as possible.
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles
We read this one together a few years ago and enjoyed every moment. Set entirely within a Russian hotel in the early 19th century, it’s the sort of book you read for the atmosphere and the period.
A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine
This sci-fi political drama is filled with countless fresh ideas and incredibly rich world-building (galaxy-building?). To be honest, its complexity made reviewing it a bit intimidating, especially as time went on…
Before She Sleeps by Bina Shah
A brilliantly paced dystopia that examines a society that emerged after most of the world’s women were killed by a mysterious disease. While its subject matter is often heavy and somber, this is a post-apocalyptic novel that doesn’t barrage the reader with death and doom.