Category Archives: fiction

The Widows of Malabar Hill

I really liked this book. I’m not typically a big mystery fan, but I am on an India kick. I can’t stop eating Indian food and reading Indian books. Also, this particular mystery book also went back in forth in time to talk about Perveen’s personal life as well and I liked that. She had an arranged marriage, sort of. It was a marriage she arranged herself with a man she met through a classmate. More on that if you read the book.

Perveen is a female solicitor in India, not to be confused with a lawyer. She cannot pass the bar or practice law in court because she is a woman. However, in one particular case where there are 3 widows who cannot religiously speak to or be seen by men, she finds her niche. So begins the book. There’s death and intrigue and lots of girl power. I wanted to write female power but that sounded wrong. Why girl power? Woman power! Lots of woman power. Read it!

I hope the little icon in the upper right hand corner of the cover is to imply that there will be more books in this series; Mysteries of 1920s Bombay : I am here for you. I would definitely read more about Perveen.

BookRiot 2018 Read Harder Challenge : a book set in or about India (I used the for a Place for Us but this one is actually set in India so I’m using it again)

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book about feminism


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Filed under 2018 Reading Challenge, adult, book review, ebooks, fiction, Reading Challenge

The Collector’s Apprentice

I received this book from Netgalley. I love B.A. Shapiro’s books. Particularly The Art Forger. I haven’t read The Muralist, but I have it and I have no doubt I will enjoy it. Whenever I read Shapiro’s books I want to put the book down and google all the paintings she mentions. I wish there were an appendix of photographs of them so I could visually see them. She writes them so well.

This book follows Paulien, later Vivienne, who has been shunned by her family due to a horrible engagement where her fiance stole all her family’s money and some of their friends’ as well. She makes a new life as Vivienne and becomes an art collector’s apprentice, a knowledge and skill she had through her father’s art collection in their home. She ends up moving with the collector from Europe to America, totally platonic. At some point there is a mystery, and a murder trial. She’s also followed by her horrible fiance in America and they pick up a relationship. I love the multiple storylines and different twists and turns. The ending was quick and satisfying. I also enjoyed how there were real historical figures mentioned and weaved in. I recommend it if you like historical fiction, art mysteries or Shapiro’s other books.

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book involving a heist

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Filed under 2018 Reading Challenge, adult, book review, fiction, netgalley, Reading Challenge, summer reading

A Place for Us

This book is the first in Sarah Jessica Parker’s new publishing imprint with Hogarth. My recently went to an Indian wedding with some friends and so I had some initial interest just from that. One of the friends I went to the wedding with told me it was a great book so that was my official queue to pick it up. I listened to most of it, and almost missed the fact that the last part, the father’s part, is narrated by a different person. Which I found interesting.

I want to warn you. I cried. A lot. Not through the whole book, but with the last 50 or so pages. SO MANY TEARS.. So if that’s not your jam then do not read this book. Like I said, I recently went to a three day Indian wedding and was attracted to this book initially to hear about the back story, themes and culture of the families who participate in these wonderful cultural celebrations. And I got that, but also so much more. It was such a moving story of parenting, being a child and trying to live up to your parents’ expectations, and just life in general. I loved the perspective from all of the family members. Highly recommended. Can’t wait to see what else SJP picks for her imprint. Also, Fatima went to the Iowa Writer’s Workshop. Go Iowa! 🙂

Great NPR review

BookRiot 2018 Read Harder Challenge : a book set in or about India (it’s more about Indian family and culture but I thought it counted)

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book from a celebrity book club (SJP new publishing imprint)

Modern Mrs. Darcy 2018 Reading Challenge : a book recommended by someone with great taste

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Filed under 2018 Reading Challenge, adult, Audible, audiobooks, book review, fiction, Reading Challenge, summer reading

The Incendiaries

Okay. I was thoroughly excited for this book. I was. But it turned out to be so-so. It was slow as molasses and I did not like any of the characters. Luckily it was super short. So I felt like I should finish just to finish. I don’t really have anything to say about it other than, if you have lots of books you need to read do not choose this one.

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Strange the Dreamer

This book came out last March and I checked it out but didn’t read it. A librarian had explained it as a magical world with blue people. I was initially put off because I thought it sounded like a ripoff of Avatar. I love Avatar. But I do not need to read a YA book about it. Then a friend got an advance copy of book two (I think it’s only a duology – not a trilogy) at the ALA conference this summer and said she loved book one so I decided to give it another try.

It is a magical world with blue people but it’s not just that. In fact, you don’t even meet the blue people for 70+ pages. It starts out with the story of Lazlo Strange, or Strange the Dreamer. He is an orphan who became a librarian, but was almost a monk. He became obsessed with books about fairy tales and faraway lands like Weep. The God Slayer of Weep comes to Lazlo’s town and says he’s going to take people to Weep for a special mission. Lazlo convinces the God Slayer to take him with even though he has no other skill than telling stories. That’s where the blue people come in. The blue people are the children of Gods who ruled over Weep in a tyrant like manner. Due to this, they were slayed, by the God Slayer. Obviously. Except 5 of the children survived, but no one knows. They live above the city of Weep in secret. And then comes the plot.

It’s a great story and I’m very excited for book two. However, if I read it and then find out it’s actually a trilogy I’ll be very upset.

BookRiot 2018 Read Harder Challenge  : a sci fi novel with a female protagonist by a female author (it’s more fantasy than sci fi but I accept it..)

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Gone Girl phenomenon

I think I’m over it. The thriller phenomenon. Or as I like to call it, the Gone Girl phenom. Gone Girl was so many years ago. How is this still a thing?? Two books I recently picked up had the same exact formula i.e. you tell me someone has died and then you spend the entire book telling me how it led up to that. I already know they died! You have to have made a really great 10 page story in order to get me to spend a whole book caring about how they died. And because I didn‘t care enough to read them but cared enough to know, I did what I was told to do when I couldn’t finish a book for college. I read the first 50(ish) pages and the last 50(ish) pages and now I know. If you are still on the Gone Girl train, or even better The Girl on the Train train, then you might like these books.

Bring Me Back by B.A. Paris. Started out good! But then it lost me and my interest.

Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman. I didn’t even care about this one from the beginning. But Reese’s Book Club is a serious cult y’all and I had to know what the buzz was about.

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Dear Mrs. Bird

Dear Mrs. Bird was a great book. I loved the writing and I love the time period. Emmy is such a cute character. She gets a job working at a women’s magazine sorting through the Dear Mrs. Bird letters. However, Mrs. Bird refuses to answer any letters containing material she deems inappropriate such as dating, marriage, affairs, romance or anything of the like. Emmy feels for these women. Some of their problems are similar to things she herself would write in about. So she decides to answer some of their letters, signing them Mrs. Bird. After reading the acknowledgements it made me want to read actual Dear Abby letters from that time period.

The depiction of what it was like to live during bombings in London was also fascinating. Such a cute fluffy summer read. I did like that Emmy’s romance with Charles wasn’t a main plot of the book. She was a real career go-getter and I think sometimes fluffy women’s fiction relies to heavily on the romance factor. Could have a sequel in order to pick up where Emmy and Charles’ relationship left off.

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