Book Review: Small Hours

Book Review: Small HoursSmall Hours
by Jennifer Kitses
on June 13th 2017
Pages: 288
Published by Grand Central Publishing
Genres: Fiction
Goodreads

In a story that unfolds over the course of a single day, a husband and wife try to outrun the secrets that threaten their marriage, sending their lives spiraling out of control.

On the edge of the economic downturn, Helen and Tom fled New York for what they’d hoped would be a fresh start: a small home in a former mill town, where they could raise their twin daughters away from the pressures of the city. But two years later, their fragile equilibrium has hit a breaking point. One September morning, Helen begins to lose control. Exhausted from juggling ambitions, frustrations, and unrealistic expectations, she snaps — and finds herself drawn into a violent conflict with two local teenagers. Unaware of her danger, in a Manhattan office seventy miles away, Tom is facing a crisis of his own at his high-pressure newsroom job — and struggling to hide a second, secret life.

My Takeaway  Relationships cannot flourish without communication and it’s clear Tom and Helen missed the memo. The couple does not communicate and withholds important information from one another (they don’t appear to be compatible). Helen has serious anger issues and Tom has a secret life. It…

Book Review: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

Book Review: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn HugoThe Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
on June 13th 2017
Pages: 400
Published by Atria Books
Genres: Fiction, Multicultural, Women's Fiction
Goodreads

Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one in the journalism community is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?

Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband, David, has left her, and her career has stagnated. Regardless of why Evelyn has chosen her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.

Summoned to Evelyn’s Upper East Side apartment, Monique listens as Evelyn unfurls her story: from making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the late 80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way. As Evelyn’s life unfolds through the decades—revealing a ruthless ambition, an unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love—Monique begins to feel a very a real connection to the actress. But as Evelyn’s story catches up with the present, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.

Filled with emotional insight and written with Reid’s signature talent, this is a fascinating journey through the splendor of Old Hollywood into the harsh realities of the present day as two women struggle with what it means—and what it takes—to face the truth.

My Takeaway  “When you’re given an opportunity to change your life, be ready to do whatever it takes to make it happen. The world doesn’t give things, you take things.” Taylor Jenkins Reid, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo W♥w. W♥w. W…

Book Review: Marriage of a Thousand Lies

Book Review: Marriage of a Thousand LiesMarriage of a Thousand Lies
by S.J. Sindu
on June 13th 2017
Pages: 288
Published by Soho Press
Genres: Fiction, LGBTQ, Multicultural
Goodreads

Lucky and her husband, Krishna, are gay. They present an illusion of marital bliss to their conservative Sri Lankan–American families, while each dates on the side. It’s not ideal, but for Lucky, it seems to be working. She goes out dancing, she drinks a bit, she makes ends meet by doing digital art on commission. But when Lucky’s grandmother has a nasty fall, Lucky returns to her childhood home and unexpectedly reconnects with her former best friend and first lover, Nisha, who is preparing for her own arranged wedding with a man she’s never met.

As the connection between the two women is rekindled, Lucky tries to save Nisha from entering a marriage based on a lie. But does Nisha really want to be saved? And after a decade’s worth of lying, can Lucky break free of her own circumstances and build a new life? Is she willing to walk away from all that she values about her parents and community to live in a new truth? As Lucky—an outsider no matter what choices she makes—is pushed to the breaking point, Marriage of a Thousand Lies offers a vivid exploration of a life lived at a complex intersection of race, sexuality, and nationality. The result is a profoundly American debut novel shot through with humor and loss, a story of love, family, and the truths that define us all.

My Takeaway  “Let me tell you something about being brown like me: your story is already written for you. Your free will, your love, your failure, all of it scratched into the cosmos before you’re ever born. My mother calls it fate, the story written on your…

Book Review: The Art of Racing in the Rain

Book Review: The Art of Racing in the RainThe Art of Racing in the Rain
by Garth Stein
on May 13th 2008
Pages: 321
Published by Harper Collins
Genres: Fiction
Goodreads

Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively, and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver.

Through Denny, Enzo has gained tremendous insight into the human condition, and he sees that life, like racing, isn't simply about going fast. On the eve of his death, Enzo takes stock of his life, recalling all that he and his family have been through.

A heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family, love, loyalty, and hope, The Art of Racing in the Rain is a beautifully crafted and captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life...as only a dog could tell it.

My Takeaway  “The true hero is flawed. The true test of a champion is not whether he can triumph, but whether he can overcome obstacles – preferably of his own making – in order to triumph.” Garth Stein, The Art of Racing in the Rain First of all, I&#8217…

Book Review: He Said/She Said

Book Review: He Said/She SaidHe Said/She Said
by Erin Kelly
on June 6th 2017
Pages: 400
Published by Minotaur Books
Genres: Fiction, Suspense/Thriller
Goodreads

In the hushed aftermath of a total eclipse, Laura witnesses a brutal attack. She and her boyfriend Kit call the police, and in that moment, it is not only the victim's life that is changed forever. Fifteen years on, Laura and Kit live in fear, and while Laura knows she was right to speak out, the events that follow have taught her that you can never see the whole picture: something, and someone, is always in the dark.

My Takeaway  “Waiting for something horrible to happen is almost more draining than it actually happening.” Erin Kelly, He Said/She Said I had high expectations for He Said/She Said, but I felt the pace was too slow (especially at the beginning). From the reviews I’ve read…