GARDENS IN THE DUNES – Leslie Marmon Silko

It is only fitting that I picked up Leslie Marmon Silko’s Gardens in the Dunes (1999) just days after learning of Larry McMurtry’s passing.  The two authors were friends, and the book opens with a special thanks to him for “all the books and encouragement.”  I heard echoes of Gus in Grandma Fleet, particularly inContinue reading “GARDENS IN THE DUNES – Leslie Marmon Silko”

THE MAP OF SALT AND STARS – Zeyn Joukhadar

“A person can be two things at the same time,” Itto says. “The land where your parents were born will always be in you.  Words survive. Borders are nothing to words and blood.” The power of storytelling is something that will forever unite us.  Regardless of where on the map you call home, regardless ofContinue reading “THE MAP OF SALT AND STARS – Zeyn Joukhadar”

EVERYWHERE, ALWAYS – Jennifer Ann Shore

Everywhere, Always (2021) is the first non-vampire novel by Jennifer Ann Shore that I’ve read.  Admittedly, romance isn’t my genre of choice as I prefer it to be more of a subplot.  When I do read a novel where the love story is the central plot, I want it to be quick and sweet withContinue reading “EVERYWHERE, ALWAYS – Jennifer Ann Shore”

MY GRANDMOTHER ASKED ME TO TELL YOU SHE’S SORRY – Fredrik Backman

“But they do what they can.  They construct words of forgiveness from the ruins of fighting words.” I’ve read countless books over the years.  Countless. There have been books I loved, books I hated, books I enjoyed, and books that were entirely forgettable.  I am a reader, and every reader knows that once in aContinue reading “MY GRANDMOTHER ASKED ME TO TELL YOU SHE’S SORRY – Fredrik Backman”

AMERICAN ROYALS – Katharine McGee

What if America was a monarchy? What would our royal family look like? Katharine McGee’s American Royals (Random House 2019) is a lukewarm, soapy YA novel that reads like a PG-13 Bridgerton without the sizzle.  One blurb referred to it as Crazy Rich Asians meets The Crown, but I didn’t get either.  The short-lived TheContinue reading “AMERICAN ROYALS – Katharine McGee”

CREATURES OF PASSAGE – Morowa Yejidé

“Nepthys listened to the frightened calls of creatures of passage, their fearsome tales of happenings in the darkest of dark, unaware that she held the light of the path in her hand…” (261) Creatures of Passage (Akashic Books, available 3/16/2021) by Morowa Yejidé is unlike any book I’ve encountered before.  There are echoes of otherContinue reading “CREATURES OF PASSAGE – Morowa Yejidé”

THE FOUR WINDS – Kristin Hannah

“Hope is a coin I carry, given to me by a woman I will always love, and I hold it now as I journey west, part of a new generation of seekers.”  (The Four Winds 448). Kristin Hannah’s The Four Winds (St. Martin’s Press, 2021) was one of the year’s most anticipated releases.  Hype forContinue reading “THE FOUR WINDS – Kristin Hannah”

THE SCENT KEEPER – Erica Bauermeister

“We are the unwitting carriers of our parents’ secrets, the ripples made by the stones we never saw.”  And so begins Erica Bauermeister’s The Scent Keeper (St. Martin’s Press, 2019), one of the most tender and magical bildungsroman tales I’ve ever read.  Elements of this coming-of-age story reminded me of Daniel Wallace’s Big Fish, orContinue reading “THE SCENT KEEPER – Erica Bauermeister”

AMERICANAH – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

“Love was a kind of grief. This was what the novelists meant by suffering.” (Americanah, 583) Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah (Originally published in the US by Alfred A. Knopf, 2013) has been around a bit but only recently made its way to the top of my TBR.  The novel puts forth some Zadie Smith WhiteContinue reading “AMERICANAH – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie”

THE MASK FALLING – Samantha Shannon

Samantha Shannon’s The Mask Falling (2021 Bloomsbury Publishing), the highly anticipated fourth book of the Bone Season series, is without question my favorite of the series.  The series is now more than half-way complete (there will be seven books), and we’re getting the thump! thump! of its heart in this novel.  I have said sinceContinue reading “THE MASK FALLING – Samantha Shannon”