Most of you know that I’m a bookaholic. And if you are new around these parts (hi!) well let me just say that I am a huge bookaholic. Like seriously. I have an entire bookcase full of books waiting for me to pick them up and read. No lie. I even have a stack of books with me on the road and my Kindle which has books stored on it waiting for me to read. With that said…I also read extremely fast. And I have a gajillion books on my “need to write these posts” list. So without further adieu, here are some book reviews…
Diamond in the Rough by Shawn Colvin
Goodreads.com Synopsis: After learning to play guitar at the age of ten, Shawn Colvin was determined to make a life in music—a decision that would send a small-town girl out on the open road for good. In 1997, two decades after she started, she got her big break. Like the troubled would-be arsonist and survivor of her smash hit “Sunny Came Home,” Colvin knows a thing or two about heartache—and setting fires. Diamond in the Rough recounts this passionate musician’s coming-of-age, from the prairies of South Dakota to the dark smoky bars in Austin, Texas, to the world stage at the Grammys.
Humorous and deeply honest, Colvin relates the experiences behind her best-loved songs in vivid color in this memoir. Diamond in the Rough captures her years of touring cross-country in bands and vans full of guys; falling in and out of love; meeting heroes like Joni Mitchell; searching for her musical identity; and making friendships that would last a lifetime. It is also an unflinching account of Colvin’s struggles—weathering addiction and depression, learning to care for not only herself but also a child—and, always, channeling those experiences into song.
With the wit, lyricism, and empathy that have characterized Colvin’s performances and inspired audiences worldwide, Diamond in the Rough looks back over a rich lifetime of highs and lows with stunning insight and candor. In its pages, we witness the inspiring story of a woman honing her artistry, finding her voice, and making herself whole.
My Review: 3 out of 5 stars. Going into this read (a Literary Junkies Book Club pick), the only thing I knew about Shawn Colvin was her song, “Sunny Came Home.” So I was a little bit curious to read her Memoir. I’m not a huge autobiography/memoir reader and I definitely wouldn’t have chosen this book on my own. It was insightful to read her accounts on her struggles with addiction and depression. Reading someone’s first had experience is always eye opening. Overall I enjoyed the book, but towards the end I was like enough already.
Ex and the Single Girl by Lani Diane Rich
Goodreads.com Synopsis: Portia Fallon calls it PTE or the Penis Teflon Effect. Its the way all the women in her family deflect men like ping pong balls. No man has ever stuck with a Fallon woman for more than two years, and Portia has nearly surpassed that record. Until her live-in boyfriend dumps her. Now, everyone from her mother Mags to Auntie Vera and Grandma Bev is convinced that Portia must have sex with a temporary man. Enter Colin Beckett, a sexy, smart, and unsuspecting British novelist, who’s visiting her small town of Truly, Georgia, for the summer. Then enter once again Portia’s ex-beau, who’s decided to fight to win her back. Now Portia faces a slippery decision: Which of these men has the right stuff to make a commitment stick?
My Review: 5 out of 5 stars. This was my very first read by Lani Diane Rich. I came across this title after seeing one of my favorite author’s blog post about it (Jennifer Crusie). So, I knew that if she was telling people to read it, then I definitely must check it out! And I was not disappointed. I loved the storyline. I loved the characters. I loved this book!
The Fortune Quilt by Lani Diane Rich
Goodreads.com Synopsis: “Accept the book with the amber spine. Return the frog. Take the cab.
What the hell kind of advice is that?”
When Tucson Today segment producer Carly McKay visits the quirky artist’s community of Bilby, Arizona, to do a story on a psychic quiltmaker, she receives an odd reading… and her life falls apart in eerie harmony with what the quilt foretold. Her best friend professes his undying love; her show gets canceled; and the mother who disappeared seventeen years ago appears on their doorstep, getting instant forgiveness from the entire family… except Carly.
Carly rushes off to Bilby to return the cursed quilt, and then surprises herself; she stays. She rents a cabin, gets a job, and meets an artist who shows her new ways to look at life, and love. Can she run away and start a new life, or should she go back and stitch her old one back together?
And why is it so hard to get a straight answer from a psychic, anyway?
My Review: 5 out of 5 stars. I seriously loved Ex and the Single Girl, so I thought I’d see what else Lani had up her sleeves and boy howdy this one was good! The story was such a fun one! And I was engaged the entire time with the characters. Definitely add this one to your list!
The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
Goodreads.com Synopsis: When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.
Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.
Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils … Pagford is not what it first seems.
And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?
My Review: 2 out of 5 stars. This book was horrid. Plain and simple. I think I was one of the few Literary Junkies members who read the entire book. I was so incredibly disappointed in Rowling for putting something like this out on the market. I felt like she was talking over my head the entire time. And the entire book was depressing and dark. I would not waste your money on this one.
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Goodreads.com Synopsis: Marriage can be a real killer.
On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?
As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?
With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.
My Review: 4 out of 5 stars. The beginning of the book seemed challenging for me. I say that because of the first few chapters. I don’t do well with situations that seem to strike a little too close to home (for whatever reason) and I don’t do “scary” books or movies. I felt like I could hear the soundtrack playing in my head…the thriller type music (not Michael Jackson’s Thriller) that sets the mood. I had to put the book down cause it got to be too much. But after talking to some fellow Literary Junkies (it was another book club read), they convinced me to pick it back up and truck on with it. I liked the book. I hated Amy. Is that possible for a book character?? lol This would make a great movie if they could do the book any justice. I will not be partaking in it however…unless the theater would be willing to mute the sound during the entire movie. 😉
The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
Goodreads.com Synopsis: Meet Pat. Pat has a theory: his life is a movie produced by God. And his God-given mission is to become physically fit and emotionally literate, whereupon God will ensure a happy ending for him — the return of his estranged wife Nikki. (It might not come as a surprise to learn that Pat has spent time in a mental health facility.) The problem is, Pat’s now home, and everything feels off. No one will talk to him about Nikki; his beloved Philadelphia Eagles keep losing; he’s being pursued by the deeply odd Tiffany; his new therapist seems to recommend adultery as a form of therapy. Plus, he’s being hunted by Kenny G!
In this enchanting novel, Matthew Quick takes us inside Pat’s mind, showing us the world from his distorted yet endearing perspective. As the award-winning novelist Justin Cronin put it: “Tender, soulful, hilarious, and true, The Silver Linings Playbook is a wonderful debut.”
My Review: 5 out of 5 stars. Loved this book. (Did not like the movie which I watched after I read it…but only because of Bradley Cooper). Like seriously loved this book. Matthew Quick is an amazing man to be able to get inside the character of Pat and bring his world to life. His quirks. His beliefs. Everything about this book was good. Definitely recommend!!!
So what books are you reading right now? Any recommendations??