Reviews for 'Adult Summer Reading 2015'


35 reviews available
Title
Truth or Die
Author
James Patterson/ Howard Roughan
Review
While the book started out very interesting, it became dull and lifeless in spite of the ongoing action. I was extremely disappointed in this novel.
Rating
Date Posted
6/29/2015
Title
EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU
Author
CELESTE NO
Review
This book is a page turner. It is the story of a troubled family and the tragedy that will either be their undoing or their salvation. It explores the division between cultures and the rifts within a family.
Rating
Date Posted
6/29/2015
Title
Trauma
Author
Daniel Palmer and Michael Palmer
Review
The late Michael Palmer wrote very enjoyable books. Here, his son completes a book based on the elder Palmer's outlines and notes. Result is mediocre, so technical and medical that I almost stopped reading! Disappointing.
Rating
Date Posted
6/27/2015
Title
Towering
Author
Alex Flinn
Review
Towering is an enchantingly dark re-telling of Rapunzel with a modern twist.

The story opens with a clash of modern and fairytale-esq scene setting. Trapped in a tower she's never left Rachel reads classics and wonders what the world outside her confinement is like. Alternately, Wyatt checks his cell phone for reception as he exits a train and steps into the small, isolated town of Slakkill.

My favourite aspect of this book was the mystery. Flinn creates a creepy, and desolate atmosphere that adds to the overall tone of the story and immediately sucks you in. After a devastating incident, Wyatt is sent to live with Mrs Greenwood, his mothers childhood best friends mum. Upon arrival he finds the journal of Mrs Greenwood's long lost daughter, Dani. Using this journal he tries to piece together the mystery behind Dani's disappearance - all the while questioning his sanity. Did he really just see Dani's ghost? Why can he hear singing that no one else can? What secrets lie in the town of Slakkill?

Flinn throws a bunch of questions at the reader, which makes for an interesting and unpredictable read. You wonder why Rachel's 'mama' keeps her trapped in a tower, and question how she fits into the puzzle Wyatt is trying to solve. Plus, you know as the reader that the two will unite at some point...

Towering is a quick read with a solid writing style and an interesting mystery.
Rating
Date Posted
6/27/2015
Title
Cloaked
Author
Alex Flinn
Review

This was an amazing mash-up of a multitude of fairy tales. Throughout the book we stumble upon retellings of many classic and lesser known tales - "The Elves and the Shoemaker," "The Frog Prince," "The Six Swans," "The Golden Bird," and "The Brave Little Tailor." I love how Ms. Flinn updates and changes the tales to blend together into one amazing journey.

The hero, Johnny, is teenage a shoemaker, working in his family's shop and trying to help his mother make ends meet. He is the epitome of a responsible and reliable teenager, until he meets Princess Victoriana. Johnny suddenly goes from living a boring life to a full on adventure of a lifetime, all to help a princess in distress. Johnny takes chances that he would never have imagined before, he learns more about who he really is and figures out that nothing is ever as it seems. Johnny sure gets the experience of a lifetime - talking animals, finding out that magic exists, and traveling in unconventional ways.

I think my favourite character in the book has to be Meg, Johnny's best friend. She is smart, sassy and practical.


The entire story is very lighthearted and very comedic in tone. It was such an enjoyable read.


I really like that the author added notes at the end to reference the different fairy tales that the story was based upon as I recognized a few and others I had no idea about. It's a great reference and I plan to look up quite a few to read for myself


Rating
Date Posted
6/27/2015
Title
Written in the Stars
Author
Aisha Saeed
Review


Written in the Stars - Aisha Saeed
Written in the Stars truly is a heart-wrenching novel.

“Life is full of sadness. It's part of being a woman. Our lives are lived for the sake of others. Our happiness is never factored in.''

Written in the Stars follows the ideologies within a Pakistani family unit. It talks about arranged marriage and forbidden love from a unique cultural perspective.
It's fair to warn you that you may be somewhat bothered by the graphic content. Our protagonist Naila goes through a lot of painful experiences and disgusting treatment. Seriously, I am freaking reeling from the suspense of it all. Naila's parents and other relatives are extremely conservative and I guess it's hard for us who live in progressive societies to understand. But note that there is a gigantic difference between an arranged marriage and a forced one. Naila was not even aware she getting married! I mean, who does that? At least in an arranged marriage you sort of have a say in whoever you're marrying. Whichever way you look at it, some of the treatment shown here is very abusive and I think nobody deserves that. No one. Whatever the race, the gender or religion, everyone deserves a shot choosing who to love.

“My mother always says when you fight destiny, destiny fights back. Some things, they're just written in the stars. You can try but you can never escape what's meant to be.”

Aisha Saeed is a very talented writer. She captures the feeling of the character and the moment that as a reader you get so caught up in everything. There is a tremendous amount of depth here, in the plotlines surrounding her family and her obligations as a Muslim Pakistani woman, in the comparison and bridging of the East and West cultures, in the efforts our characters are willing to put in just to be able to choose their own paths and find happiness.

There may not be a sci-fi or dystopian element in the romance, but reader can still empathize with Naila, because she's only a young 18-year old. I still consider this a YA book. A very compelling YA book that opens our eyes to the real issues that matter.
Rating
Date Posted
6/27/2015
Title
Normally This Would Be a Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Awkwardness
Author
Danielle Fishel
Review
read this book as I quite enjoy Boy Meets World and Girl Meets World. The thing I like about most autobiographies from Hollywood types is the ease at which you can read it, this one did not disappoint in that manner. This was not a treatise on all things Danielle Fishel, rather a fun read that went through her life and career.

The thing that surprised me a bit was the lack of interesting stories from the set of Boy Meets World-there were a few but not as many as I was expecting.

All in all, Danielle Fishel did a very fine job of crafting an interesting story, that at least seemed to capture the "real" person.





Rating
Date Posted
6/27/2015
Title
Starting Now
Author
Debbie Macomber
Review

Starting Now is a new addition to the Blossom Street Novels and if you enjoy that series, this one will also warm your heart. If you haven't experienced Macomber's books, she can really wrap you up in her characters. You should give her a try -- it's not necessary to read this series in order.

That's what these books are -- heartwarming. I couldn't read books like Starting Now every day, but they are wonderful change of pace for me.

Libby is a divorced, hard-working attorney that has sacrificed almost everything to make partner in her firm. She is very surprised when instead of being made partner, she is laid off. Her boss admonishes her to take some time and get a life. It takes Libby a while, but she does change her life tremendously.

Libby's path to happiness isn't straight, by any means. Every time she thinks things are going her way, something happens to throw her off the path, but eventually she gets there -- after all, that's what these books are all about -- you feel SO GOOD when they end.


Rating
Date Posted
6/27/2015
Title
Uncommon Passion
Author
Anne Calhoun
Review
Rachel Hill has recently escaped living a very strict life in a religious community. She is 24 and living on a working farm. She bids on a bad boy cop at a bachelor auction, with the intent of using him for experience then going her own way. Ben is exactly the opposite of Rachel, but things will get complicated. Well written
Rating
Date Posted
6/24/2015
Title
A Star for Mrs. Blake
Author
April Smith
Review
Unknown to me, the U.S. Congress in 1929 passed legislation to fund travel for mothers of the fallen soldiers of WWI to visit their sons' graves in France. Almost 7,000 Gold Star Mothers made the trip. In this emotional story, April Smith imagines the experience of 5 of these women.
Rating
Date Posted
6/24/2015
Title
Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932
Author
Francine Prose
Review
From seedy nightclubs, shady policemen, gangsters, artists, Nazis, female auto racing to dinner with Hitler himself and efforts of the Resistance, this unique story based on a famous photograph and real personalities tells a unique story from several points of view of pre-WWII and Occupied Paris. Engrossing and a page turner, shocking and satisfying.
Rating
Date Posted
6/23/2015
Title
ALL I LOVE AND KNOW
Author
JUDITH FRANK
Review
This is the story of a terrorist attack in Jerusalem and its impact on a family. The novel explores adoption, gay marriage and true love that is lost and found. How does a family become strong enough to stay together and endure when its very basis has been drastically changed?
Rating
Date Posted
6/22/2015
Title
The Blue Lagoon
Author
Henry De Vere Stacpoole
Review
I was surprised at how enjoyable it was. I read out of curiosity. It's a free public domain download. Follows the original movie quite closely. It's a quick read as well. I recommend - particularly to fans of the movie.
Rating
Date Posted
6/22/2015
Title
The List
Author
Anne Calhoun
Review
Tilda Davies is an unofficial matchmaker, and a full time Stationery shop owner. She meets FBI agent, Daniel Logan when she decides to step on a ledge to think. He steps onto the ledge, thinking she needs saving. They are an unlikely couple with a very unlikely relationship. There are explicit scenes. This is very well written.
Rating
Date Posted
6/18/2015
Title
In the Unlikely Event
Author
Judy Blume
Review
As a fan of the author, I eagerly awaited the publication of this book. Trust me, I was not disappointed! Blume's use of the three air crashes that occurred over Elizabeth, NJ in the 1950s serves as a frame for the story as it both begins and ends there 35 years later. The fact that the author lets the reader know what happened to almost all of the characters (and there are many) is a real treat.
I particularly enjoyed the depiction of Miri, the protagonist. Blume is known for writing of the thrill of first loves and does so beautifully here with the story of Miri and her boyfriend Mason. The book will make you laugh and cry! I highly recommend it!
Rating
Date Posted
6/17/2015
Title
Beastly: Lindy's Diary
Author
Alex Flinn
Review
I have been wanting to read this for a little while now. I adored Beastly (and several of Alex’s other works) and the idea of re-reading Beastly from Lindy’s perspective was hype enough to make me want to read it. And I wasn’t disappointed. This little novella is exactly what it’s advertised as, a retake of Beastly via Lindy. If you’re read Beastly, you already know the basic plot. Kyle is an asshat and Kendra curses him to live as a beast until he finds someone to love him. Lindy turns out to be that someone.

I loved seeing her side of things. She’s sweet and caring and really has a thing for Kyle, though she tries to hide it. She struggles to make ends meet, but you don’t really hear her complaining about her situation. School, work, tutor on the side, try to keep her dad out of trouble, and she manages it all gracefully. There aren’t many people who could in that situation. Seeing “Adrian” through her eyes was also interesting to read about. I loved that she knew that he loved her without having to hear him say it or be reassured continually that she was worthy of someone like him. Basically, she is a great change of pace over the sloppy, whiny, heroines that dominate YA.
Rating
Date Posted
6/16/2015
Title
Beastly
Author
Alex Flinn
Review
Beastly is a heartwarming, wonderfully retold version of Beauty and the Beast. It is a very delightful read, with the chat sessions, the modern-day setting, the wide range of emotions, lots of references to classics, and tons of roses. It is just perfect. I expected a fairy tale retold, I’m not disappointed.

The story deals with important issues, such as inner values over appearance, abandoned children, the parent-child relationship, true friendship, empathy, patience, and love.




BeastNYC: OK. It all started because of a witch.
Froggie: thts hw they all strt


The story is told from Kyle’s (a.k.a. Adrian’s) point of view. His character is creditably drawn. Kyle has to reevaluate everything he thought to be right and worth following before: his values and beliefs in life, friendship, love, his relationship with his father, and his attitude toward people as a whole.

Lindy appears in the middle of the book. She comes from terrible family circumstances. She is a strong and courageous character, she is smart and independent. Lindy’s character is not fully elaborated, so to understand her thoughts and feelings Lindy’s Diary is highly recommended.


It is a slow-paced read, because the setting spans two years. Although I usually don’t, I enjoyed every moment of that. There are no surprises in the plot, but the ‘hows’ are interesting.
Rating
Date Posted
6/16/2015
Title
The Girl on the Train
Author
Paula Hawkins
Review
This well written psychological thriller will hold your interest from one chapter to the next.
Rating
Date Posted
6/16/2015
Title
ORHAN'S INHERITANCE
Author
ALINE OHANESIAN
Review
The novel ORHAN'S INHERITANCE is a book worth reading. It is historical fiction and tells a gripping story of the Turkish- Armenian conflict which led to genocide.
Rating
Date Posted
6/16/2015
Title
Laura Lamont's Life in Pictures
Author
Emma Straub
Review
I love stories about the old Hollywood star making system. Fleeing her family home in Wisconsin in the wake of a tragedy that compels her to pursue her acting career in golden-age Hollywood, Elsa enjoys the heady extravagances of her fame while struggling to remain true to herself and balance the needs of her family.
Rating
Date Posted
6/15/2015
35 reviews available