Welcome to Quick Lit where I share books that I chose for my own reading enjoyment in a mini-review format. These are not books I received for review, but books that I’ve been wanting to read or that have caught my attention. Most of them have been talked about ad nauseam or have been on my to-read list for a long time so they don’t really need a full review. But, I’d still like to give them some space here on the blog, so instead, I’m offering mini-reviews of the books that won’t get full-page space here.
I’ll be linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy and her monthly Quick Lit link-up. Be sure to head over to see others share their Quick Lit posts. This post contains affiliate links. Click here to read more about that.
My current reads are MAD HONEY (I’m going to have a LOT to say about this one), THE WOMAN WITH THE BLUE STAR (This is my 3rd try with this one due to the setting of a sewer for most of the story. I have issues with dark, closed in spaces.), and THE TOBACCO WIVES (My book club read for the month).
Some of my recent reviews include ALL THE LIVING AND THE DEAD, ROOM AND BOARD, a couple of middle-grade novels HAVEN JACOBS SAVES THE PLANET and PIPPA PARK CRUSH AT FIRST SIGHT, and a cookbook, THE ULTIMATE SEASONAL LUNCHBOX.
I’ve also been sharing a lot of excellent children’s books lately, See them all, HERE.
I’ve had a bit of TV time lately as well so I’ve started the new Netflix series, The Empress. I’m also loving the new season of The Great British Baking Show. I’ve made it halfway through Season 4 of Gilmore Girls. I’m also loving this season of Dancing with the Stars.
As I have mentioned in the past, I am trying to read more books off of my shelves, but it’s hard to do that when review books come in the mail and new books are constantly being released. So, I added some of the books from my shelves to my Libby audio holds. Then I can read faster by dual reading…reading the physical copy and listening to it on audio. I’ve now read twenty books from my shelves and moved them out of the house. Here are 5 books I read and listened to in the last month.
By: Emily Henry
Narrated by: Julia Whelan
Published: May 19, 2020
Format: Audiobook through the library and Kindle
I read this simultaneously on my kindle and listened to the audio. I chose her book because I needed a palate cleanser after some heavier books. This was just the right book at the right time.
The main characters are two authors who have a history together. After a rough patch in both of their lives, they end up living next to each other while both are trying to overcome writer’s block.
I think my favorite chapter was the one that included the letters from January’s dad. As angry as I was with him for causing January’s pain, I became emotional reading through them. I liked Henry’s use of these letters from her childhood to offer redemption and a path for forgiveness.
BEACH READ was funny, romantic, a bit predictable, and angsty, but enjoyable.
By: Colleen Hoover
Published: October 26, 2021
Publisher: Grand Central
This is my first Colleen Hoover and probably my last. Did this book hold my attention? Yes. Did I want to know what happened to the characters? Yes. Was I reading quickly til the end? Yes. But, did I LIKE the story? No. It wasn’t just the sinister plot, but the way I felt manipulated and icky while reading it. I didn’t care for the characters and wasn’t rooting for anyone in the story. But, I DID finish and I DID want to know how it all turned out. Did I like the ending? No. That isn’t a deal breaker, but again, I felt manipulated.
I can see why her books are popular and what keeps people reading them, but they just aren’t the kind of books I would choose for my enjoyment. This was our book club read last month and I think most of us felt the same way.
THE BUDDHA IN THE ATTIC
By: Julie Otsuka
Published: August 23, 2011
This was my Literati Subscription book club choice for September. I plan to read more of Otsuka’s books and I really enjoyed this one. I have her other books on my Libby hold list. She has a beautiful and unique way of writing that is quite emotional and compelling. I did not want to stop reading. She packs a huge story into a short novel.
Japanese women come to America before the war with promises of an amazing life only to find out they were filled with lies instead of dreams. Otsuka shares the story of all the women simultaneously so it reads like a chorus of thoughts. These women just wanted a better life and for most of them, their dreams were a crushing reality of hard work, racism, and hatred, especially after the invasion when many were forced into internment camps and separated from their families.
CARRIE SOTO IS BACK
By: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Narrated by: Stacy Gonzalez, Mary Carillo, Julia Whelan, et al.
Published: August 30, 2022
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Format: Audiobook purchase
Seriously, Taylor Jenkins Reid can write anything and I’ll read it. I know nothing about tennis and really didn’t expect to read this one. I didn’t like Carrie Soto’s character in MALIBU RISING, but after reading reviews from friends I trust, I decided to give the audio a try.
Carrie Soto decides to come back out of retirement after her record of holding the most Grand Slam tennis titles is broken. Her journey back on the court and to competitions, her relationship with her father, and a blooming romantic relationship held my attention all the way through.
It was a thrill to listen to it! I loved it on audio with a full-cast narration! Highly recommend!
THE BOOK WOMAN’S DAUGHTER
The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek #2
By: Kim Michele Richardson
Narrated by: Katie Schorr
Published: May 3, 2022
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Format: Audiobook through the library
I absolutely loved THE BOOK WOMAN OF TROUBLESOME CREEK and was anxious to read the follow-up. The story continues the story several years later as Honey is now 17, raised by the blue-skinned packhorse librarian who has now been arrested along with her husband for marrying outside of “their race”. Honey is left behind to fend for herself and fight for the right to continue her mother’s job of delivering books to the people of the Appalachian Mountains.
Her story is sad, much like her mother’s story. There is little plot, but the story is mostly carried by the daily lives of the characters that Honey interacts with. Honey and the women she interacts with have a strong resolve to be seen and heard during a time when women had no rights or voice is inspiring.