The Blind Man’s Garden (Nadeem Aslam)

I’m always interested to figure out how a book’s title will manifest itself in the story. Is it simply based on one of the characters or a phrase someone utters? (Like Harry Potter or The Color Purple) Or is the meaning more hidden, something the readers have to tease out for themselves? Without giving away spoilers, this book is sort of a combination of the two.

Title – The Blind Man’s Garden

Author – Nadeem Aslam

Page count – 367

Goodreads rating – 3/5 (liked it)

On its surface, this book is about the immediate aftermath of the September 11th attacks and the effects they had in Pakistan and Afghanistan. It’s a fictional story (as far as specific characters and events go), but the struggles, turmoil, and loss are very real. Continue reading “The Blind Man’s Garden (Nadeem Aslam)”

I’ll Give You The Sun (Jandy Nelson)

This is a bit different than my other reviews because I actually listened to this book on CD instead of reading a hard copy. I’m not usually a fan of listening to books on CD; most people I know listen to them in their car, but I get distracted too easily, miss sentences, and feel like I lose too much of the story. I’ve been having trouble getting my hands on a physical copy of this book so I decided to give the CD form a go and…holy cow. This kept my rapt attention; there were even times I sat in my car for upwards of an hour after I got home because I could not. stop. listening. I would have to read it again to know for sure, but I think this is one of my favorite books I’ve read ever.

Title – I’ll Give You The Sun

Author – Jandy Nelson

Page count – 371 (13 hours, 3 min)

Goodreads rating – 5/5 (it was amazing!)

**NO spoilers – this beautiful story needs to unfold all on its own** Continue reading “I’ll Give You The Sun (Jandy Nelson)”

Americanah (Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie)

The one complaint I have about this book is that the paper isn’t cut straight across. It’s that sort of roughly ruffled edge that makes it hard to quickly flip the pages.

That’s it. That’s the only fault I can find with this book.

Title – Americanah

Author – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Page count – 477 (A relatively hefty read, but the pace never drags)

Goodreads rating – 5/5 (it was amazing)

There’s a reason this book has been recommended to me by so many people. As I said in my review of Adichie’s The Thing Around Your Neck, she has a way of using words to engage all your senses and transport the reader into the moment of the story. And Americanah is no exception. Continue reading “Americanah (Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie)”

Beauty Queens (Libba Bray)

This was a fun read. I’ve heard it described as Lord of the Flies but with teenage beauty queens. But instead of tearing each other to pieces, they work together to overcome the obstacles set before them. Girl power at its finest!

Title – Beauty Queens

Author – Libba Bray

Page count – 390

Goodreads rating – 3/5 (liked it)

**I will NOT give away any major spoilers. Some things may not make sense if you haven’t read it, but I won’t reveal anything important.**

This story begins with a plane crash on what appears to be a deserted island. The plane was full of teenage beauty queens headed Continue reading “Beauty Queens (Libba Bray)”

Another Brooklyn (Jacqueline Woodson)

This was a beautiful story to explore. I almost feel like my experience is incomplete having only read it once. This is a book that needs to be savored again.

Title – Another Brooklyn

Author – Jacqueline Woodson

Page count – 170

Goodreads rating – 4/5 (really liked it)

I’ll give as much description as I can, but it needs to stay vague to avoid giving anything important away. It’s really better if you discover the secrets and answers for yourself.

This book is fictional prose, but the author’s background in poetry is clearly evident. Our narrator’s name is August, and in this story we learn about her life through current events and flashbacks…but it’s not always immediately clear where we are in time. Continue reading “Another Brooklyn (Jacqueline Woodson)”

Code Talker (#44/50)

This is officially my final book of the year! I have quite a few friends who’ve said they are doing various reading challenges for their New Year’s resolutions. What are you all doing? It is definitely a challenge to try to read 50 books in a year! But there’s also no shame in aiming for a smaller number or reading a certain number of minutes per day…Anything that encourages people to read more gets my approval. 🙂

Title – Code Talker: A Novel About the Navajo Marines of World War Two

Author – Joseph Bruchac

Page count – 224

Goodreads rating – 4/5 (really liked it)

Our main character is a Navajo boy named Ned, and he is recounting to his grandchildren his experience serving in the South Pacific during WWII. The story follows his journey from early childhood to joining the Marines at 16-years-old to become a “Code Talker.” For those who don’t know, the Code Talkers were Native American soldiers who used their bilingual abilities to communicate unbreakable coded messages. Continue reading “Code Talker (#44/50)”

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (#43/50)

If you have read my reviews of the original series, you know I’m a big Harry Potter fan. Unfortunately, I just didn’t feel the same magic in this book.

Title – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Author – J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne

Page count – 308

Goodreads rating – 3/5 (liked it)

**SPOILERS – I won’t include specific details, but stop now if you don’t want to know even general events/concepts that come up** Continue reading “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (#43/50)”