Tweet Cute [Book Review] #ThrowBackThursday

April 21, 2022

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord
#throwbackthursday

Tween Cute by Emma Lord (cover) Image: two apartment buildings with a teen in each using social media on their phones

 

Genre/Categories/Setting: Contemporary Young Adult Fiction, Family Life, YA RomCom, Coming of Age, New York City

Welcome to Throwback Thursday where I highlight an older review or post a current review of an old read. Today, I’m re-sharing a sweet YA romcom, Tweet Cute by Emma Lord. (It’s my fav of her three books.)

I’m linking up today with Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog for #throwbackthursday.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

grilled cheese sandwichThe setting is New York City. Pepper (Patricia) is the swim team captain at her private school, achievement-focused, and a perfectionist. Her family owns a large fast-food burger chain, and Pepper runs the twitter account. Jack is a classmate and fellow swim team member. He secretly develops apps, enjoys being a class clown, and experiences episodes of sibling rivalry with his twin brother. Jack’s family owns a small downtown deli. A few things happen to put the story in motion: the big burger chain copies (steals) Jack’s family’s grilled cheese sandwich, a twitter war ensues that Jack and Pepper instigate and fuel, and Jack and Pepper find themselves becoming close friends on the school’s app where identities remain anonymous.

You’ve Got Mail meets Tell Me Three Things meets With the Fire on High….

Continue here for my full review of Tweet Cute..



QOTD:

Have you read Tweet Cute or is it on your TBR?

 

Sisters of Night and Fog [Book Review] #WomensHistoryMonth

March 1, 2022

Sisters of Night and Fog by Erika Robuck

The Sisters of Night and Fog by Erika Robuck (cover) Image: white text over a picture of two women walking away from the camera through a foggy night

Genre/Categories: Historical Fiction, WW11, Europe, Biographical, Espionage, Resistance

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

Thanks #NetGalley @BerkleyPub for a complimentary eARC of #TheSistersOfNightAndFog upon my request. All opinions are my own.

An American socialite in France meets a British secret agent…..

Sisters of Night and Fog is the story of two real life, brave young women who join the Resistance Movement during WW11. Virginia d’Albert-Lake is married and lives in France, and adventure-seeking, nineteen-year-old Violette Szabo is a French citizen but lives in England. Because Violette is an expert with firearms and has dual citizenship, she is recruited by Britain’s secretive Special Operations organization. The two women eventually meet at Ravensbruck concentration camp.

Virginia and Violette

My Thoughts:

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The Woman They Could Not Silence [Book Review] #NarrativeNonfiction #WhatsOnYourBookshelfChallenge

February 18, 2022

Do you have Narrative Nonfiction on your bookshelf?

The Woman They Could Not Silence by Kate Moore (cover) Image: white text on a black muted background....the small graphic image of a quill and ink below the title

Today for the #WhatsOnYourBookshelfChallenge I’m focusing on “Narrative Nonfiction” (creative nonfiction or literary nonfiction) as I bring you a review of The Woman They Could Not Silence by Kate Moore.

Every year, I commit to reading more nonfiction. In nonfiction, I love Memoir, Biography, and Narrative Nonfiction. However, I think narrative nonfiction might be my favorite. After today’s review, I’ve included a few of my favorite “narrative nonfiction” titles.

Do you have a favorite Narrative Nonfiction title or recomendation?

***This post contains Amazon affiliate links.


The Woman They Could Not Silence: One Woman, Her Incredible Fight for Freedom, and the Men Who Tried to Make Her Disappear by Kate Moore

Genre/Categories/Setting: Nonfiction, Narrative Nonfiction, Biographical, Mental Health, Women’s/Patient’s Rights, Insane Asylum (1860)

My Summary:

In 1860, wives and daughters could be committed to insane asylums by their husbands or fathers without their consent or proper mental health evaluations. Women were property owned by the husband or father. Women could be committed for being too emotional, opinionated, independent, zealous, or intellectual….basically, any woman who can’t be kept “in line.” When Elizabeth Packard is committed to an insane asylum by her husband, she discovers that she is not the only sane woman there. Because she is labeled “crazy,” no one will listen to her appeals or intervene on her behalf and she has no voice to fight for herself because it makes her appear even crazier. Her friends who may know the truth won’t speak up for fear of the same punishment from their husbands. However, after losing her home and her children, Elizabeth has nothing more to lose and is determined to fight for her life and for the lives of innocent women.

Elizabeth Packard

Elizabeth Packard

My Thoughts:

How far we’ve come! What a nightmare scenario for women! I became intrigued with this subject after I read Woman 99 by Greer Macallister. In that story, a daughter is commited to an insane asylum for being too emotional and her sister attempts a rescue. I knew I wanted to read more about women being unfairly committed.

First, What is Narrative Nonfiction?

“Narrative nonfiction, also known as creative nonfiction or literary nonfiction, is a true story written in the style of a fiction novel. The narrative nonfiction genre contains factual prose that is written in a compelling way—facts told as a story. While the emphasis is on the storytelling itself, narrative nonfiction must remain as accurate to the truth as possible” ~Source

Elizabeth:

Drawing heavily on court reports, newspaper articles, corresponsence, and journals, the author weaves a compelling story around the facts and Elizabeth’s own words. Through Elizabeth’s determination and fearless fighting spirit, she affects change for women. The resulting law reforms brought widespread, long-lasting change in the operation of insane asylums and granted married women the right of jury trial before commitment. Her fight and contributions should be remembered and honored.

Elizabeth is an incessent talker with strong opinions and a strong will. These were textbook examples of female insanity at the time. During her confinement, Elizabeth feels like an asylum is a “storage unit for unsatisfactory wives.” Women are deemed “cured” when they become “quiet, decorous in manners and language.” Using her brilliant mind and her ability to write, Elizabeth is determined “to write her way out of her hellhole if it is the last thing she does.” She demonstrates that “a spirit cannot be killed. With spirit comes hope. With spirit comes strength. With spirit comes the energy to start the fight for justice.”

“Wronged women were not supposed to stand up for themselves. Wronged women were not supposed to come out fighting, or be angry, or battle for injustice to be overturned. Elizabeth’s course was unnatural in [McFarland’s] eyes…and therefore insane.”

Elizabeth’s life is not without controversy. In her attempts to gain her freedom, she has a complicated relationship with McFarland, the director of the asylum, and uses many methods to manipulate, outsmart, and befriend him to achieve her freedom. He becomes her lifelong adversary.

Recommended: I definitely recommend The Woman They Could Not Silence for readers who appreciate stories about the fight for women’s rights and mental health reform and for fans of stories about strong and determined women making a difference. She fought for us all. Thanks to Shellyrae @ Book’d Out for the rec!

Content Considerations: domestic abuse, difficult passages about the mistreatment of patients and the lack of care for the mentally ill

My Rating: 4 Stars

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The Woman They Could Not Silence by Kate Moore

The Woman They Could Not Silence Information Here

Meet the Author, Kate Moore

Author Kate MooreAmong other books, Kate is the author of The Radium Girls, which won the 2017 Goodreads Choice Award for Best History, was voted U.S. librarians’ favourite nonfiction book of 2017 and became a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestseller.

A British writer based in England, Kate writes across multiple genres including history, biography, true  crime and grift, and has had many titles on the Sunday Times bestseller list. Her work has been featured across international media and translated into more than fifteen languages. A born public speaker, Kate regularly tours her books and is equally at home spinning stories onstage as she is writing them on her laptop in London.



A Few of My Favorite Narrative Nonfiction Titles:

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann
The Day the World Came to Town by Jim Defede
The Only Plane in the Sky by Garrett M. Graff
Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson (part narrative nonfiction, part historical essay)



 I’m linking up with Deb @ Deb’s World and SueDonna, and Jo for the February installment of #WhatsOnYourBookShelfChallenge.

Whats On Your Bookshelf Challenge



QOTD:

Do you enjoy narrative nonfiction?
What is your favorite form of nonfiction?
Is The Woman They Could Not Silence on your TBR or have you read it?



Happy Reading Book Buddies!

“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke

“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes

“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

“I read because books are a form of transportation, of teaching, and of connection! Books take us to places we’ve never been, they teach us about our world, and they help us to understand human experience.”
~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text



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Unless explicitly stated that they are free, all books that I review have been purchased by me or borrowed from the library.

Book Cover and author photos are credited to Amazon or an author’s (or publisher’s) website.

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Black Cake [Book Review]

February 1, 2022

Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson

Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson (cover) white text over a background of various multicolored graphic shapes

Genre/Categories: Contemporary/Historical Fiction, Complicated Family Drama, Adoption, California/Caribbean/London

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

Thanks #NetGalley @RandomHouse for a complimentary eARC of #BlackCake upon my request. all opinions are my own.

On the occassion of their mother’s passing, Byron and Benny are left with their mother’s voice recording and specific instructions: they are to listen to it together in its entirety and in the presence of the family lawyer. In addition, they are to share the “black cake” (Caribbean rum soaked fruit cake) in the freezer when the time is right, and they’ll know when it is the right time. Byron and Benny were close as children and grew up in a loving home, but they have grown apart as adults. In fact, Benny hasn’t seen the family in twenty years. Can they overcome their bitterness and deal with the secrets their Mom shares about her history? Will a secret sibling add further complications to an already strained relationship?

a slice of black cake

My Thoughts:

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Lovely War [Book Review] #ThrowBackThursday

January 6,  2022

Lovely War by Julie Berry
#throwbackthursday

Lovely War cover

Genre/Categories: YA or NA Historical Fiction, WW1, Romance/Love Story, Mythology

In 2020, I decided to systematically revisit my older review posts and update them. On Thursdays, I’ll be re-sharing a few of these great reads. Today, I’m re-sharing a creatively structured WW1 Historical Fiction story, Lovely War by Julie Berry.

I’m linking up today with Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog for #throwbackthursday.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

Is love more powerful than war?

“During the years of WW1, Hazel, a shy and talented pianist meets James, a handsome soldier, at a dance. He’s shipping out to the front in a week. Is this enough time to fall in love? Two more characters round out the cast: Colette, a gifted singer from Belgium, and Aubrey, a member of the all African-American regiment and a gifted musician. The Greek gods narrate this story of love, music, and war.”

A story of love, music, and war….

Continue here for my full review of Lovely War…



QOTD:

Have you read Lovely War or is it on your TBR?

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone [Book Review] #ThrowBackThursday

December 16,  2021

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb
#throwbackthursday

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb (cover) Image: black text over a large yellow box of tissue against a blue background

Genre/Categories: Nonfiction, Memoir, Psychology, Therapy, Mental Health

In 2020, I decided to systematically revisit my older review posts and update them. On Thursdays, I’ll be re-sharing a few of these great reads. Today, I’m re-sharing a compelling memoir that explores therapy, Maybe You Should Talk To Someone by Lori Gottlieb.

I’m linking up today with Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog for #throwbackthursday.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

Humorous, thought-provoking, and candid…

Lori Gottlieb, a psychotherapist and national advice columnist, shares a behind-the-scenes look into her work as a therapist. She also shares what it was like when she sought out therapy for herself.

“Most of what we say to ourselves we’d never say to people we love or care about, like our friends or children. In therapy, we learn to pay close attention to those voices in our heads so that we can learn a better way to communicate with ourselves.”

Exploring mental health, finding meaning in life, and repairing broken relationships…

Continue here for my full review of Maybe You Should Talk to Someone…



QOTD:

Have you read Maybe You Should Talk to Someone or is it on your TBR?

 

The Girl With Seven Names [Book Review] #ThrowBackThursday

December 9,  2021

The Girl With Seven Names: Escape From North Korea by Hyeonseo Lee
#throwbackthursday

The Girl With Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee (cover) red and black text and a headshot of a young Asian woman

Genre/Categories/Setting: Nonfiction, Memoir, Defection, Political Freedom, North Korea

In 2020, I decided to systematically revisit my older review posts and update them. On Thursdays, I’ll be re-sharing a few of these great reads. Today, I’m re-sharing a compelling memoir, The Girl With Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee.

I’m linking up today with Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog for #throwbackthursday.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

“In The Girl With Seven Names, Hyeonseo Lee shares her experience as a child growing up in a high-class family in North Korea. Her home bordered China and as she became a teenager, she grew more curious about life outside of North Korea. On an impulsive lark, she decides to cross the river and sneak into China to take a peek and to visit some distant relatives. Her plan to come right back to North Korea is derailed when she receives word that it is not safe to return. For the next few years, she lives as an illegal immigrant in China, working and quickly learning the language to survive. After twelve years, she risks everything to seek asylum in South Korea and to rescue her mother and brother from North Korea. To complete her dangerous mission, she receives help from a kind and generous stranger.”

A compelling story of escape…determination…survival…family…kindness…

Continue here for my full review of The Girl With Seven Names…



QOTD:

Have you read The Girl With Seven Names or is it on your TBR?

 

The Beekeeper of Aleppo [Book Review] #ThrowBackThursday

December 2, 2021

The Beekeeper of Aleppo
#throwbackthursday

The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri (cover) Image: black text over a background of gold sketches of leaves, blossoms, and bees

Genre/Categories/Setting: Historical Fiction, Family Life, Refugee Crisis, Syria

In 2020, I decided to systematically revisit my older review posts and update them. On Thursdays, I’ll be re-sharing a few of these great reads. Today, I’m re-sharing a poignant refugee story, The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri.

I’m linking up today with Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog for #throwbackthursday.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

“Nuri, a beekeeper, and his wife Afra, an artist, live happily with their son in beautiful Aleppo. They enjoy a quiet and peaceful life and value the friendship of close friends and extended family. Suddenly, their lives are turned upside down by war and, out of desperation, they make a decision to flee Syria. What Afra has experienced and seen causes her to go blind, complicating their journey through Turkey and Greece to get to Britain. On this risky and uncertain journey, they must learn to survive in unpredictable situations, to deal with their loss, to trust each other, to depend on the kindness and compassion of strangers, and to keep their hope alive.”

A compelling story of love, loss, hope, and compassion…

Continue here for my full review of The Beekeeper of Aleppo…



QOTD:

Have you read The Beekeeper of Aleppo or is it on your TBR?

 

The Stationery Shop [Book Review] #ThrowBackThursday

November 18, 2021

The Stationery Shop by Marjan Kamali 
#throwbackthursday

The Stationery Shop by Marjan Kamali (cover) Image: white text over a background of colorful pink and orange flowers)

Genre/Categories/Setting: Historical Romantic Fiction, Romance, Family Life, Iran

In 2020, I decided to systematically revisit my older review posts and update them. On Thursdays, I’ll be re-sharing a few of these great reads. Today, I’m re-sharing a bittersweet love story, The Stationery Shop by Marjan Kamali.

I’m linking up today with Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog for #throwbackthursday.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

“In 1953, two teenagers meet in Mr. Fakhri’s Stationery Shop in Tehran. Roya loves the fountain pens, shiny ink bottles, and the thick, lovely writing paper while Bahman loves Rumi’s poetry and is an activist. They share a love of poetry and continue to meet in the Stationery Shop while their romance grows. Their happy life together is complicated by family tension and political unrest.”

Complicated families…..soul mates…..resilience…..

Continue here for my full review of The Stationery Shop…



QOTD:

Have you read The Stationery Shop or is it on your TBR?

 

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics [Book Review] #NonfictionNovember #NovFicNov

November 12, 2021

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics by Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton, Songteller by Dolly Parton (cover) Image: a portrait of Parton in a round frame against a light blue background

Genre/Categories: Nonfiction, Memoir, Country Music

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Working 9-5 …. Jolene …. I’ll Will Always Love You …. Islands In the Stream duet with Kenny Rogers…. Coat of Many Colors …. what’s your favorite Dolly Parton song?
Enjoy this sampler from Youtube while you read my review!

My Summary:

Dolly Parton, Songteller is a celebration of a career in country music and a peek into the story behind the lyrics of a couintry music legend. Parton highlights 175 of her songs (singing some lyrics of each and narrated by Dolly herself if you have the audio version), and she shares some behind-the-scenes of each one, a few personal stories, and provides never-before-seen pictures (if you have the print version). A perfect read/listen for a country music fan or music lover.

My Thoughts:

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