SUYB - December

January 14, 2020

Welcome to 2020! I'm so happy to say that i not only met my 2019 reading goal of 50 books, but I doubled it! I closed out the year having read 101 books.

Then She Was GoneThen She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell
4 stars {Paperback}

I struggled with how to review this without giving things away. It hit close to home and there were parts that dropped my jaw and squeezed my heart, but most importantly, it was a great read and I couldn’t put it down.

Let It SnowLet It Snow by Nancy Thayer
4 stars {ARC}

Such a cute and heart warming Christmas story! It had the expected predictability of a romance novel, the chuckles of a lighthearted read, and a few twists for fun.

I think the characters were likable, even grump Oscar Bittlesman, and were easy to warm to. A great seasonal read I'd recommend to others.

The Institute: A NovelThe Institute: A Novel by Stephen King
4 stars {Audiobook}

I was apprehensive about this one because of its size (something I’m working on getting over), but I’m really glad I gave it a read.

Stephen King is “new” to me, as in within the last 10 years, but he quickly became one of my favorites, and has solidified that position here.

For one, there’s a phrase in the book that Luke recalls his grandfather saying. It made me smile because it was something my grandmother always said as well.

Second, when you mention my often unknown hometown, it makes me smile.

I couldn’t get through the book fast enough. Great read!

The House on Mango StreetThe House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
3 stars {Library}

This was a nice series of short tales about a young girl growing up in a less than ideal neighborhood. Some stories were comical, others were sad. Overall it was a nice, short read.

Evvie Drake Starts OverEvvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes
4 stars {Audiobook}

Without giving too much away, I really enjoyed this book. Evvie has had some curveballs thrown at her but continues to hold her head high and make the best of things... or is she too afraid to move forward? When a friend of a friend is avoiding his own problems and lives with her for the summer, things starts to change for Evvie.

WildflowerWildflower by Drew Barrymore
4 stars {Audiobook}

I’ve always liked Drew Barrymore. She’s always had that air of cool, hippie, wildflower older sister to me. And I’m happy that she still comes across this way in her book.

It was fun to listen to her accolades and life stories. It read quickly (by her) and had many moments where I chuckled along with the tale.

The Bad SeedThe Bad Seed by Jory John
3 stars {Kindle}

When I saw the title of this children's book I couldn't help but read it. It's a cute story about a bad seed and how he became that way.

Murder on Astor Place (Gaslight Mystery, #1)Murder on Astor Place by Victoria Thompson
3 stars {Audiobook}

This was a good high-society murder mystery set in 1800s New York City.

Sarah is a midwife, must to her estranged family's chagrin. One evening she's called to assist a labor in a boarding home and recognizes of of the women in the house. Soon after, the woman is found dead and Sarah finds herself in the midst of the investigation.

Loyalties, family lines, and friendships are tested as the sad truth of what happened is uncovered.

The Christmas Wish (Sunshine Valley #0.5)The Christmas Wish by Melinda Curtis
3 stars {Kindle}

This was a cute holiday read about a close-knit town in Colorado. Everett was hired to balance the town's budget. Rosalie is still reeling from her husband's unexpected death. With layoffs, and hearts, on the line, everyone needs their Christmas wish to come true.

We Should All Be FeministsWe Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
3 stars {Own}

This is just one of those books that you should read. At 48 pages, there's no excuse. Some lines from the book that stood out to me:

"Gender as it functions today is a grave injustice."

"We spend too much time teaching girls to worry about what boys think of them. But the reverse is not the case."

"... because a man who would be intimidated by me is exactly the kind of man I would have no interest in."

"if you are a man and you walk into a restaurant and the waiter greets just you, does it occur to you to ask the waiter, 'why have you not greeted her?'"

"Culture does not make people. People make culture."

Kiss the Girls and Make Them Cry: A NovelKiss the Girls and Make Them Cry: A Novel by Mary Higgins Clark
3 stars {Audiobook}

I listened to this relatively quickly given the holiday weekend. However, it was a bit of a let down as far as what I typically enjoy from MHC. Unfortunately, I'm starting to feel that her older stuff is MUCH better than the newer books. I'd say read it if you like her, but otherwise, skip.
Currently reading: One of Us is Next

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