June 26, 2017

What I've Been Reading... June, 2017

You guys, reading has been a struggle for me this month. I had a really hard time getting through Hidden Figures, and it threw me off totally. I would choose to play on my phone instead of reading a few pages before bed, which is never good for me. Something about the light. 

But I stuck with it and finally finished the book. After two months of dry reading (that really should have been more narrative than it was), I'm ready for a quick, fun read.

For June/July, my book club is reading Before the Fall by Noah Hawley. Check out our group if you'd like to join in! 

*All book descriptions are directly from Goodreads.

Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly ★★★
Starting in World War II and moving through to the Cold War, the civil rights movement, and the space race, Hidden Figures follows the interwoven accounts of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Christine Darden, four African American women who participated in some of NASA's greatest successes. It chronicles their careers over nearly three decades as they faced challenges, forged alliances, and used their intellects to change their own lives - and their country's future. 

If you have already seen this movie, don't read the book. It is centered around the facts and has very little narrative in it. When I started reading this, I had already seen the movie, so I struggled. This is an amazing story and one that should be kept in the public. I just think the movie does a better job of telling it.

Everything We Keep by Kerry Lonsdale ★★★★ 1/2
Sous Chef Aimee Tierney has the perfect recipe for the perfect life: marry her childhood sweetheart, raise a family, and buy out her parents’ restaurant. But when her fiancĂ©, James Donato, vanishes in a boating accident, her well-baked future is swept out to sea. As Aimee struggles to reconstruct her life, she delves deeper into James’s disappearance. What she uncovers is an ocean of secrets that make her question everything about the life they built together.

I listened to this on my drive to and from Rochester a couple weeks ago, and I LOVED it. It is one of those stories that you think about when you aren't reading. I loved the intrigue, the characters of Aimee and Ian, and how the author told the story. She jumped around in time a little bit, and it was still very easy to follow.

The White Princess by Philippa Gregory ★★★ 1/2
When Henry Tudor picks up the crown of England from the mud of Bosworth field, he knows he must marry the princess of the enemy house—Elizabeth of York—to unify a country divided by war for nearly two decades. But his bride is still in love with his slain enemy, Richard III—and her mother and half of England dream of a missing heir, sent into the unknown by the White Queen. While the new monarchy can win power, it cannot win hearts in an England that plots for the triumphant return of the House of York.

Since I read the prequel to this last month, I thought I'd takle this one in June. This book could easily be half the length it is. I understand why the author wanted to go so far in the future (to coincide with Elizabeth's life), but I think it would have been just as meaningful if some of the plot was cut out. What an interesting era though, and I loved all the allusions to Henry VIII and Elizabeth I.

The BFG by Roald Dahl ★★★★
The BFG is no ordinary bone-crunching giant. He is far too nice and jumbly. It's lucky for Sophie that he is. Had she been carried off in the middle of the night by the Bloodbottler, the Fleshlumpeater, the Bonecruncher, or any of the other giants she would have soon become breakfast. When Sophie hears that they are flush-bunking off in England to swollomp a few nice little chiddlers, she decides she must stop them once and for all. 

This is a classic, cute, easy read. I finished it in one evening. I love Roald Dahl's writing, and Matilda was one of my favorite stories growing up. There are definitely lessons to be learned from this story, and I highly recommend it for children.

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