Quick review for a rather compelling read. I probably think of this book on the same level as Megan Hart’s “Tear You Apart” – and considering how much I respect Megan Hart as a writer, that’s high praise, even if that wasn’t one of my favorite narratives in her bibliography. Jessica Hawkins’s writing pulled me into the novel from point one all the way to the very ending. I’m surprised how invested I was in this novel despite how frustrated I was with the very flawed cast of characters and their respective situations. Granted, I didn’t like the subject matter of this book (it deals with romantic relationships involving cheating), but I went into the book for the experience of the story. This narrative laid bare many of the complex emotions and flaws for each of the characters. I honestly understood and learned why each character acted and reacted the way they did. There are some clashes that feel formulaic for narratives of this genre, but I think Hawkins did a good job of adding layers of dimension, moral conflict and intimacy (physical, mental, emotional) throughout the narrative on more than one level.
Quick review for a somewhat quick read. I actually liked “The Sun Is Also A Star” more than I liked “Everything, Everything”. It’s a very ambitious novel that covers a lot of ground, probably more than I think one book could really cover, but what it manages to do still resonated with me on more than one level, and the cross-cultural elements of the novel really stayed with me after I finished the novel, even when I found the events not as satisfying as I would’ve liked.
Quick review for quick read. So a few confessions on my read of “Perfect Escape” – I read this book in a matter of a 2 hour marathon reading session and it was a random read I picked up from my library. I loved the other books I’d read from Jennifer Brown, so “Perfect Escape” was a definite pick up for me for the author as well as the promise of a roadtrip family story with coming of age leanings and a character with a disability (OCD).
Quick review for a quick read. Another emotional and engaging read from Sara Zarr. “Gem and Dixie” is a story of sisters as well as knowing when to let go and grow. I enjoyed the journey, though the story had more compelling points in certain turns than others. It got a little muddled in the middle trying to march itself towards the ending, but still pulled at my heartstrings for showcasing the relationship between the characters.
Quick review for a somewhat quick read for me, though it felt like I had to push myself through this novel several times. “The Whole Thing Together” has many issues, but I would echo concerns that much of this novel suffers from rampant cliches, insensitive references in the measure of racial attribution (considering it uses a racial slur casually and struggles constantly to accurately and sensitively portray the multiracial character who struggles with her identity) and sexism (slut shaming and odd fixations on physical details of the characters). In addition to those issues, I think the biggest downfall of this novel really came in that I just couldn’t find a space to connect with the characters. Not as much as I wanted to, because there were parts of the narrative that had the potential to go interesting places, but never quite reached that point and abruptly halted in places where the development could’ve provided more intimacy than the narration allowed.