Category Archives: netgalley

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

The Perfect Couple

I liked this book a lot. I received a copy from Netgalley. I love Hilderbrand and have read most of her books (here’s a review of one). She tends to release one every summer, great beach reading considering the locale she uses (Nantucket). I’ve also read her Winter Street series and loved it.

This book has a different tone for sure. It starts with a murder. That’s not a spoiler. It happens in the first chapter. She did a good job bringing it together, however I would say that there were a LOT of twists and indiscretions. Too many to be normal. At least I hope normal people don’t have that many affairs. Needless to say, some might find that a bit irritating, the lack of realistic plot twists. But I thought it was entertaining and I would recommend it. Perfect for summer! Goodreads summary below.. Well actually. I was going to post the summary but ironically the summary is wrong. It says the death is the bride-to-be and it’s not. So.. we’ll skip that. Get it together Goodreads.

Happy 4th!

 

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The Ensemble

   

I can’t stop looking at this cover. It is so beautiful. The best. I received this book from Netgalley and had to check out the real copy because I wanted to see the cover in person. I should find the artist and see if I can buy a print..

Well anyway. The book is just as good as the cover y’all. SO great! I loved it. I finished it in a day. I loved the characters and the slow burn of their lives in the quartet. (I like books with a slow burn and minimal climaxes). I can’t say that I understand a lot about chamber music but the writing felt very lyrical when she was talking about their music. If you know anything about violins or cellos, you might get more out of those parts and enjoy it even more. Such a great book. Multiple POVs. Fast read! I also LOVED this section about love.

“Love is inexact, Henry said. It is not a science. It is barely a noun. It means one thing to one person, and one thing to another. It means one thing to one person at one point and then something else at another point. It doesn’t make sense… I love you, it’s a mystery. Because it’s a mystery, we have to take care of it. Feed it. It can’t go missing, but we can’t tie it up. We can only tie it to someone else. Other people. The the world is like this : full of the geometry of my rope tied to you, and to you, and yours tied to him, and to her, and hers to someone else. I love you, it’s a mystery.”

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Clock Dance by Anne Tyler

I requested Clock Dance from Netgalley *bows thanks to Netgalley*

I confuse Anne Tyler and Ann Patchett sometimes. Is that weird? Not because their writing is similar, but because their names get mixed up in my head. And then half way through I’m like, this is not like her. And then I realize I’m thinking of the wrong author.

Anyway. The beginning of this book felt like Some Luck by Jane Smiley, which I love! You are following a character quickly through time and jumping decades. She’s just a slow burn, moving through the decades without dramatic plots or events.  So at first I was thinking, this is going to be great. But then, there was a semi-dramatic plot event. And that’s where the book focused. I didn’t even like the plot twist. It seemed so unusual. However, I like how Willa grew as a character and that she ended up finding herself and what she wanted without other’s influence. Along with Jane Smiley, I’d say it’s also similar to Stewart O’Nan or Kent Haruf.

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All We Ever Wanted

And I’m back in the game! (90s movies, anyone?)

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While I was on vacation (which was great) I finished this book. I like Emily Giffin. I never got in to her Something Borrowed books, but I did read her other books Where We Belong, Heart of the Matter, and The One & Only. So I like her. I received this book from Netgalley and didn’t remember what it was about when I first started reading. I was a little put off by the conflict the book centers around, because it’s such a hot button issue in culture today. However, I think Giffin did a good job talking about it. She let all the characters have a POV chapter so you could see it from different angles without feeling like she was hitting you over the head with her morals. Very good book. Quick read. Not fluff, but definitely a summer read. It’s even on Modern Mrs. Darcy’s Summer List, so she agrees. This book will be released June 26, 2018.

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book with song lyrics in the title (YouTube video here)

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book about a problem facing society today (from the advanced challenge)

 

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You Think It, I’ll Say It

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I received a copy You Think It, I’ll Say It, a book of stories, from Netgalley. And Lord, was I excited! I love Curtis Sittenfeld. Two years ago, I read Eligible which is a re-telling of Pride & Prejudice. It was hilarious. So I was very excited to read this new one of hers.

If you also liked Eligible, be aware that these stories are not funny. I was thinking it would be more like American Housewife, which was hilarious. But most of Sittenfeld’s stories are day in the life, fairly serious and thought provoking stories. I don’t care for the one that came from the book’s title but I really liked most of them. The title story is about a married woman with kids who plays a game called You Think It, I’ll Say It with a fellow dad at parties or sporting events where she rips on other people and he listens. For some reason she thinks this means they have a connection and she believes she’s in love with him. Meh. My favorite one was about this woman who’s obsessed with a celebrity and her social media accounts. This celeb is essentially described like The Pioneer Woman. The character is obsessed with her because in their early twenties they had an affair. And yet now, she’s married with 3 kids! What a hypocrite. It’s a great story.

I love how all of the stories feel well rounded and thought out and you really feel like you know the character and what they’re thinking and doing and even what they’ve been thinking and doing off the page before their story came to you. It’s such a great book. Highly recommended. The release date for this book is May 3, 2018.

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book with an ugly cover

 

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Alternate Side by Anna Quindlen

You guys, I have been deathly ill. No, I did not have the flu. I had a head cold that required the assistance of steroids. STEROIDS! How do those two things even relate?

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Somehow, I finished a book during this. I love Anna Quindlen (previous book review here) and when I saw her new book on Netgalley I scooped it up. Alternate Side is all about a dead end street in New York City and the families that live there. Specifically Nora and Charlie and their fraternal twins, Rachel and Oliver. I guess I was so excited to read this that I didn’t look at the summary when I requested it because I was shocked at the turning point on the block. Something bad happens and the ripples from that event change Nora, her home, her family, her job and her marriage. Basically everything. Through all of this though Nora and Quindlen are writing a love letter to New York City. After the event, and even before, Charlie wants to leave the city. Nora refuses. It is her city. She can’t fathom leaving and being herself somewhere else. This is what I loved most. I loved the characters and the story but because I love NYC so much I basically loved all the praise towards it. So beautifully written.

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge : a book with characters who are twins

Modern Mrs. Darcy 2018 Reading Challenge : a book by a favorite author

BookRiot 2018 Read Harder Challenge : a book with a cover you hate – I do hate this cover. The whole location of the book revolves around Nora living on a dead end street in New York City. A lot of the plot surrounds this. And yet the cover, what I assume to be a street diagram, does not display a dead end street anywhere. It could be a road map to anything. I do not like it. One bit.

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