Books

Book 581: The Jane Austen Book Club – Karen Joy Fowler

The last time I read this a good friend loaned it to me and we were still living in the dorms in undergrad! (So a really long time ago.) I don’t even know where this copy came from that I picked up, but it was a pleasure to revisit. I can’t believe it’s been FOUR YEARS basically since my friends and I did our own JABC.

Re-reading this was like visiting an old friend. They made a pretty true-to-the-book film adaptation in 2007 (IMDb link) that makes it feel like it hasn’t been almost a decade-and-a-half since I last read this.

Continue reading “Book 581: The Jane Austen Book Club – Karen Joy Fowler”

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Books

Book 578: Bad Idea – Damon Suede

As I’m slogging my way through the absolute TOME that is Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crisis Changed the World (which is fascinating), I needed something a little lighter to break up the finance/business talk.

I wasn’t sure what to expect with this. Suede is a great romance writer, but sometimes it’s a little crass for me. This one definitely rode that line and sometimes went over, but not enough so for me to abandon the book (as if I’d ever do that). Ultimately, Suede pulled me in though I mean a neurotic comic book illustrator (Trip) and a southern comic/pop culture nerd (Silas) getting together in the big city (NYC), hello custom-made dream for me 😀

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Books

Book 577: Crazy Rich Asians (Crazy Rich Asians #1) – Kevin Kwan

After really enjoying the film adaptation of this, I knew I was going to have to read this trilogy! I picked up a copy of this first book pretty quick from the library, but I’ll be on hold for the next two until mid-2019 at the rate it’s going. That’s okay though I have so many other books to read.

If anything the book and the movie made me want to visit Singapore. One of the previous college’s I worked for had a satellite campus in Singapore, so I was vaguely aware of the culture and the people going in, but after reading about the food and seeing some of the awesome architecture in the movie and just from image searching, it’s definitely moved up my list of places to visit.

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Books

Book 567: Mary B – Katherine Chen

I wasn’t sure what to expect going into this one. I’m always open for a bit of Austen fan-fiction so when someone from the publisher reached out to me about this one I figured why not?*

I’m not one of those who is obsessed with any particular character of Jane Austen’s like the author. I love the broad strokes of her stories and the general caricatures and stereotypes she works in across all her work. So when the fan-fiction gets super specific, like this one, I’m never quite sure what will come out of it. Will I enjoy this authors take on the character? Will they stay true to not only Austen’s works but the generally accepted views of the character? Will it be enjoyable and readable?

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Books

Book 560: Camp Austen – Ted Scheinman

I reached out to the publisher for a copy of this book when I saw the author, Ted Scheinman, was going to be in Boston giving a talk at the BPL.* Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make it as it was the same day we moved houses (in a snow storm no less), but if you’re on the west coast, he’ll be talking about this at Skylight Books in LA this Saturday, July 21! (Skylight Books LA website)

I’m torn about my review. I’m wondering if I had the opportunity to hear him speak about the book and his experience, if my response would be different. I read his interview with the Jane Austen Summer program, but there are things you can only tell when you listen and watch someone interact with others.

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Books

Book 557: The Brontë Plot – Katherine Reay

The Brontë Plot cover artThe downside with reading so many romance novels by the same author back-to-back is you quickly discover their strengths and weaknesses. As I read each of Reay’s works, they became less and less memorable even as I was reading them.

If I have to tie it down to the most basic its character development closely followed by pacing. I’m not one to need a “two months later” directional at every instance, but in Reay’s case it would’ve helped a lot. Toward the beginning of the novel the meet cute and the timing was so off I found myself having to re-read multiple sections to see if I’d missed the introduction or some major indicator of time having passed. (I hadn’t.)

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Books

Book 555: Lizzy & Jane – Katherine Reay

Lizzy & Jane cover artAs if reading a book about grief and death wasn’t enough, I unknowingly placed a book right behind it from my Reay reading binge that focuses on two sisters, one of whom is battling cancer, and one of whom is battling issues from their mother’s death from cancer.

After reading the first two novels by Reay (The Austen Escape and Dear Mr. Knightley) I wasn’t really sure where this one would fall. Would it be super religious/preachy or wouldn’t it? Would it be squeaky clean or would Reay let a little more spice into the work? Continue reading “Book 555: Lizzy & Jane – Katherine Reay”