Follow:
Topics:
Browsing Tag:

book review

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Night by Elie Wiesel

    Elie Wiesel survived. Millions did not. I have known about this book most of my life, but for some reason it never made it into my hands, until I picked it up when I was in New York at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Here is my book review Night by Elie Wiesel.

    There are many World War II and Holocaust survivor books worth reading. I have read many. But this short and even simple story is so personal, so heartbreaking, so real. It took Elie ten years from the time he was liberated from the Nazi death camps to even talk about the experience. And in 1956 he finally did, in the book Night.

    When Elie was 15 years old, he was deported with his family (father, mother and sister) from Hungary to the Auschwitz – Birkenau camp in Poland. Elie’s mother and sister were likely killed shortly after their arrival, but he never knew. Elie’s father died a horrible slow death. Elie was the only one to survive.

    Over the years the book has had it’s critics questioning its factuality. Of course it has. There are those who think the holocaust is a hoax. But the pages of Night tell a nightmare of a young boy pulled from his studies in his home in Hungary and thrust into unimaginable horrors.

    Night was a watershed moment for the holocaust literature. It has been translated into thirty languages and is often on the syllabus at universities. It contains profanity, violence and horror, as told through the eyes of a young man living it. Wiesel would live the rest of his days (he died in 2016) with regrets. He would go on to write dozens of books and in 1986 he would be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Wikipedia writes –

    “The Norwegian Nobel Committee called him a “messenger to mankind”, stating that through his struggle to come to terms with “his own personal experience of total humiliation and of the utter contempt for humanity shown in Hitler‘s death camps”, as well as his “practical work in the cause of peace”, Wiesel delivered a message “of peace, atonement, and human dignity” to humanity. The Nobel Committee also stressed that Wiesel’s commitment originated in the sufferings of the Jewish people but that he expanded it to embrace all repressed peoples and races.”[6] 

    I am so glad I finally read this masterpiece. Thanks for reading my book review Night by Elie Wiesel.

    Read last week’s book review of The Maid by Nita Prose.

    We love it when you pin and share our book reviews. Thank you!

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Maid by Nita Prose

    This is a fun and easy read with an oddball character who reminded me a bit of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. Here is my book review The Maid by Nita Prose.

    Molly Gray struggles in social situations, and always has. She never knows the right thing to say or do and she realizes people find her strange. Until a few months ago, Molly’s gran was the center of her tiny universe, always helping her understand situations and simplifying the world. But now gran is gone.

    And so is most of the money, and Molly Gray is working hard as a maid at the prestigious Regency Grand Hotel trying to make ends meet. Molly’s obsessive compulsive tendencies actually make her an very good maid…she loves perfection. But when Molly discovers one of the hotel’s wealthy guests dead in his room, all hell will break loose.

    Not only does Molly’s orderly world start to crumble, but she finds herself the main suspect in the murder. Her strange personality is misread as suspect and before she knows it she has lost her beloved job and is in jail.

    But out of the shadows comes friends Molly never even knew she had, and slowly things start to become clear. Who is the real murderer? What other sinister things will be found out? And will sweet Molly find happiness and stability?

    Well they are making a movie so, yeah, you can guess some of that. But read the book before you see the movie. Always do that! Thanks for reading my book review The Maid by Nita Prose.

    *****Five stars for The Maid by Nita Prose.

    Read last week’s review of The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn

    We love it when you pin and share our book reviews. Thanks!

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn

    Well I’m a big fan of Kate Quinn. She has a wonderful way of taking real life heroines and creating fictional stories. I’ve listened to four of her books now over the last several years, and I also really love the voice of her books on audible whose name is Saaskia Maarleveld. Here is my book review the Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn.

    Like Quinn’s other books; The Rose Code (2021), The Huntress (2019), and The Alice Network (2017), The Diamond Eye is based on a real life World War II female heroine named Lyudmila Pavlichenko (Mila). When war breaks out Mila is a young mother, studying at university and trying to make a better life for her and her son in Kyiv.

    But war changes everything, including Mila’s life as she finds herself thrust into service in the war against Hitler. But unlike most women who end up in nursing or administrative positions, Mila becomes a sniper, an unlikely national heroine known as Lady Death.

    Although Mila is a real person, most of this story is fictional, as Quinn merges fact and fiction and a beautiful writing style that pulls the reader into Mila’s life, her loves and her fierce and determination to survive.

    Mila will find herself thrust into the spotlight, meeting President’s and First Ladies, all while grieving her own losses and unwittingly changing the course of history.

    I hope you enjoyed my book review The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn

    *****Five stars for The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn

    Read last week’s review of The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

    We love it when you pin and share our book reviews. Thank you.

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

    Sue Monk Kidd is one of my favorite authors. I’ve read several of her books, and last year her work The Book of Longings made my top ten list. Today’s book is about one of her older works, published in 2005. Here is my book review The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd.

    Jessie has avoided the island where she grew up and her eccentric mother for years, always finding an excuse to stay away. But when her mother’s odd behavior takes an even odder turn, Jessie is forced to leave her comfortable home and husband Hugh and venture back to Egret Island.

    Kidd’s story will unfold for both Jessie and her mother, as they learn things about each other’s past. Playing an important role through out the tale is the Mermaid Chair, an ornate and sacred relic in the Benedictine monastery on the island.

    Jessie will struggle with her own unhappiness, being drawn to an unlikely and handsome monk. Her relationship with Brother Thomas will make her question everything about her own life, her marriage her childhood and the tragedy that took the life of her father. All this while her mother’s mental health will eventually unlock long hidden family secrets that revolve around The Mermaid Chair.

    ****Four stars for The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

    I hope you enjoyed reading my book review The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd.

    Read last week’s review Playing with Myself by Randy Rainbow

    My current read The Maid by Nita Prose

    We love it when you pin and share our book reviews. Thanks!

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Playing with Myself by Randy Rainbow

    Yes it’s his real name. Randy Rainbow is a comedian and satirist and Playing with Myself is his first book. I listened to this book on audible and and it has so many funny moments, but also a serious side. Here is my book review Playing with Myself by Randy Rainbow.

    Rainbow, who grew up in New York and South Florida, tells how he went from being a hostess at Hooters (yes really) to a full-fledged comedian hobnobbing with the likes of Carol Burnett, Patti LaPone and Steven Sondheim. His story is truthful and not always funny, particularly the part about his narcissist father, childhood bullies and lack of self-confidence as a young gay man.

    Rainbow today looks back on the difficult times that brought him to his success, gives credit to all those people who helped him along the way, including those who did what they could to see him fail. He does it with a fun and inventive writing style and a whole lot a flare. And let’s not forget his signature pink glasses.

    Rainbow is a unique talent, and now he’s an author too. I loved this book, and I am a fan of his humor and the way he uses music as satire and all the characters he has developed as part of his act. A breath of fresh air. Thanks for reading my book review Playing with Myself by Randy Rainbow.

    *****Five Stars for Playing with Myself by Randy Rainbow

    Read last week’s review Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

    My current read The Art of Eating by M.F.K. Fisher

    We love it when you pin and share our Book Reviews. Thank you.

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

    Well I have loved this author in the past for her astonishing work of Station Eleven, one of my favorite books of 2018. It’s about a pandemic by the way…weird. I was excited to read her next novel The Glass Hotel, but it just fell flat for me. So I was cautiously hopeful about her latest book. And, I loved it. Here is my Book Review Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel.

    In this novel Mandel continues her imaginative work into “speculative fiction”, a genre that takes the reader through both natural and unnatural, magical and metaphysical and futuristic. But, it’s not SciFi. It’s much more. This book had some elements that reminded me of Cloud Cockoo Land, one of my favorite books of 2021. I love a writer who can imagine life in a completely different realm but make it is believable.

    In Sea of Tranquility we meet a wide range of characters, in a wide range of time frames, starting with Edwin in 1912 to Olive two hundred years later and finally Gaspery-Jacques another several centuries in the future. How these people are connected, and reconnected through time travel, is the crux of the story. Can the past be changed, should it be?

    You’ll find yourself questioning your own daily reality, as questions are explored that we are grappling with on earth today including climate, pandemic, and violence. Thank you for reading my Book Review Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel.

    *****Five stars for Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

    Read last week’s review of So Brave Young and Handsome by Leif Enger

    My current read The Omnivore’s Dilemma

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review So Brave, Young and Handsome by Leif Enger

    I’m a big Leif Enger fan. One of my all time favorite books is his first novel Peace Like a River, published in 2001. I also immensely enjoyed Virgil Wander, published in 2018. This book, falls between these two published in 2008, and I am happy to have finally read it. Here is my Book Review So Brave, Young and Handsome by Leif Enger.

    It would be my dream come true to be able to write in such a gifted way as Leif Enger. Because what makes a brilliant author is one who has a believable and compelling plot that is married with outstanding character development. Leif Enger does that.

    So Brave, Young and Handsome is a coming of age story, but more for middle-aged men…the characters we fall in love with. Even the “bad guy” is someone your heart will go out to. Such a sign of exceptional storyline and writing.

    It’s 1915 in Minnesota when we meet Monte Becket, a fledging author trying to find his sense of purpose. Along comes Glendon, a reserved but beguiling man of similar age who literally materializes through the fog on the river.

    And so begins an adventure of a lifetime for Becket, and just one more dangerous and volatile adventure for wanted outlaw Glendon. The two befriend a young boy, stay one step ahead of the relentless bounty hunter Charles Siringo and make their way across the country together and separately to Glendon’s former wife Blue. And along the way what a story is told.

    Like Enger’s other two books, I could not put this page turner down. I loved it – even the bad guy. Thanks for reading my book review So Young Brave and Handsome by Leif Enger.

    *****Five big stars for So Young, Brave and Handsome

    See last week’s review of All That She Carried – The Journey of Ashley’s Sack

    My current read The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn

    We love it when you pin and share our book reviews. Thank you.