Book of the Month Club · Chik Lit · Contemporary Fiction · Katherine Center · review · Women's Fiction

How to Walk Away


author: Katherine Center
publisher: St. Martins Press


A book with a story to tell that hasn’t settled on what type it wants to be is a little how I felt about How to Walk Away. If I had to pick, I would say it was a combination of Contemporary Fiction (aka Family Drama-lite-) meets Women’s Fiction meets Chick-Lit and it truly doesn’t know who it wants to be.

I toyed back and forth with giving this a 4 star review, a 3 star, or somewhere in the middle and landed on 3 stars. Here’s why..

The 4 stars of this book

There were a LOT of goosebumps going on. There were truly some good, deep moments where I genuinely appreciated the author’s writing. She didn’t always tie a neat bow at the end of everything (almost, but not always and certainly not on the most important part). She, many times, made me feel like this was true to life in some ways. SOME ways.

The 3 stars

I could technically claim 2.5 stars on some of this stuff but I’ll give it 3 because this IS chick-lit(ish) and so I need to be fair and judge off that. But there were too many times, in my opinion, where the author made it far too simple. A lot of glossing over of emotions, accepting things for what they are, and certain unemotional responses to where there should be something. She always made sure to throw it in there, it wasn’t just some emotional empty hole, but it was like “oh yeah and I was pissed. See me throw this. Okay we’re good now .I told you I was angry , let’s move on.” And She didn’t seem to stay consistent within that.

Overall, for the first time ever, I think I understand now when people say an author manipulated their emotions. I don’t feel like Katherine Center necessarily manipulated me but I do feel like instead of making this a great story just by excellent writing (which I know she is no doubt capable of), it was a good story based mostly off all the feels the book gave you. That was the heart of it. I don’t want that in a book. I want it to be real.

All this to say I will still pick up the next book Katherine Center writes. She is a good writer and I’m looking forward to seeing more of what she has to offer. Thank you for the work you do!



View all my reviews

ARC · Authors · Fiction · For Fun · Fredrik Backman

Things My Son Needs to Know about the World


author: Fredrick Backman
publisher: Atria Books


Fredrik Backman writes a short on all the hilarious, anxiety-ridden, fearful and confusing moments of being a parent. He starts off with the lightest of humors and morphs along the way, carrying with him a plethora of “been there” and “what were you thinking” stories, some of which that will have you surprising yourself in fits of laughter. True to the Backman way.

“Maybe you don’t even want to do a sport. You might want to play golf instead! And that’s all right too!”

(haha. Sorry to all you golfers reading this…)

He points out the less thought of but oh so true nature of humanity…

“Sometimes we have to get rid of stuff to make room for new stuff, and then we start to miss the old stuff so much that we have to build new stuff that pretends to be the old stuff.” 

…highlights the confusion of illogical ideas behind children toys…

“The worst crap is actually the crap we bought before you were even born. Like a toy sheep containing a speaker that was meant to simulate “whale song” and help you sleep better. Why wasn’t that crap shaped like a whale? Huh? That still bothers me.”

(Me, too.)

…has a few hilarious, laugh-out-loud moments that I absolutely will not spoil… you just have to read the book…

…and then manages to end with a twist of a story that might have you in tears, especially if you have ever experienced anything remotely like what he experienced. Again, I will not spoil this moment. You have to read it for yourself…

Thank you NetGalley and Atria Books and Fredrik Backman for this ARC. 


“Your mother loves nothing in this life as much as she loves dancing, and she chose to share her time on Earth with a man she can’t dance with without seriously fearing for her safety. She chose me. And then you came along. And you love music. And when you dance, you and she… If I could only choose one single moment to live inside for all eternity, it would be that. I can’t tell you anything about love. Nothing more than that.”



(my only reason for 4 stars instead of 5 was because the beginning of the book was very repetitive. It felt like fillers. But the book truly grew and he did a fantastic job showing us the Fredrik Backman we know and love in all his books. Thankful for such a talented writer and for his family, supporting him for all the world to get to enjoy.)

Book of the Month Club · Getting to Know Me · Memoir · TBR

Memoirs

I am a child (in a grown-up’s body.)
I love a good story.
Spin me a tale and take me far away.
This is the life of a reader of fiction.

I’ve never really been a big non-fiction reader.
Well, wait.
Let me clarify that.

Non-fiction is great, but it does require a lot more…thinking…on my part.
What I mean is, I love to study what I’m reading if it’s non-fiction.
If it’s real life.
Something to learn.
So in other words, I’m a slow non-fiction-reader.
lol.

Well, I pre-judged memoirs without giving them a chance.
I have no interest in reading about one person’s life. Right?
I thought so.
I was wrong.
Because what I thought I was hearing when I heard “memoir” was actually “autobiography”…
I just didn’t realize the difference.
Honestly, I just never gave it any thought.
This chart helped a lot…


Currently Reading…

I dove into the world of memoirs just this week and found a book called Prognosis. I stumbled across it by accident, to be honest. It was a free book I got for being a Prime Member with Amazon. You get them monthly, how nice is that?

Anyways, it was the best eBook out of the choices I had so I took a chance and immediately loved it. Maybe it’s the subject, I don’t know, but now I’m hooked. I want to read more.

Memoir isn’t the summary of a life; it’s a window into a life, very much like a photograph in its selective composition. It may look like a casual and even random calling up of bygone events. It’s not; it’s a deliberate construction.

William Zinsser, in On Writing Well (2006; 30th Anniversary Edition)

Do tell me, what memoirs have you read that stuck with you?
What memoir do you recommend I read next?


I’m a big BOTM club fan and here is a list of some of their current memoirs.
Have you read any? What should my next pick be?

ARC · Cult · Fiction · Suspense · Thriller

Your Life Is Mine


author: Nathan Ripley


Blanche Potter grew up as Blanche Varner, daughter and heiress if you will to the cult Your Life is Mine, lead by cult leader – and father – Chuck Varner. While Blanche escaped the brainwashing and sociopathic tendencies of both her mother and father, she was in no way protected from her past when she decided to hide her identity forever. No one knows she was there the day her father carried out his mass shooting. Nor do they know of all the random killings she was there for as well, and as far as she is concerned, no one ever will. Little does she know, her past, her family history, will hurt so many people, including the ones closest to her.  And are these mass shootings over? Or were they in the making all along? 

This book had a lot of potential and it was certainly a good read. A book I breezed through and didn’t want to put down. But I really wish we would’ve heard so much more in depth about Chuck Varner and his cult. There is such a huge group of readers that love a good cult-driven book so that would’ve greatly added to this story. I think too this book would have been so creepy and amazing having heard the narrative from Chuck and from Blanche’s mother. There was SO much potential in just those two characters alone. Could’ve possible made a good series, too. Looking forward to more by this author.

Thank you NetGalley and Atria Books for the ARC.  



Leave a note in the comments what thriller you think I should read and review next!

Thanks, Lovelies! ❤