Katie is a long time reader, book blogger, book clubber and was once even on the Reading Team in high school (don't know what a Reading Team is? Go ahead and ask her, because she loves to talk about it!). She currently helps run the Fountain Bookstore Book Club (which you can find on Meetup). She reads a mix of Young Adult and Adult, and especially loves thrillers and magical realism.
This one is already destined for my Best Books of 2018 list! Set in 1917 and 1921 India, this is the first book in the a fictionalized series centered around Perveen Mistry- the first female lawyer in India. The title refers to three widows who live in seclusion, meaning they have no contact with men. Perveen first interviews the recent widows because she is concerned that they do not understand a legal request they have made of Mistry Law, however a dead body soon embroils Perveen into a much darker mystery. Her past is explored as her life becomes fraught with peril in the present. Loved the setting, loved the characters, and the tense, twisty plot! We do have some signed copies left over from Sujata Massey's visit to the store (which sadly I missed!) if you'd like to order one. *****
My first new favorite Thriller of 2018! Anna Fox has agoraphobia, and is homebound. Obsessed with old movies, especially of the Hitchcockian variety, and mixing her powerful meds with enough wine to make Cersei Lannister look like a teetotaler, Anna also spies on her neighbors, watching their lives unfold as a way to cope with her own non-life. She plays online chess, chats with other agoraphobics- doling out great advice that she can’t apply to herself, and chugging wine.
Did I mention the wine drinking? Because Anna is thirsty, ya’ll.
Anna has gone full on Jimmy Stewart in Rear Window (with a camera not binoculars), and spying on her new neighbors, the Russells, she thinks she sees a crime go down. But did she?
I really enjoyed the twists and reveals. Anna was easy to relate to because we spend so much time in her head. The care she shows for her online community, the reasons for her agoraphobia, her concern for Ethan (the neighbor's son), all of this had me rooting for Anna to, well, first put down the wine glass and brush the snarls from her hair, and then prove that she wasn’t a raving lunatic (especially to that one cop who was all Judgey McJudgerson- we’re the only ones allowed to judge Anna’s excessive drinking!). And the fact that Anna references so many great movies is a definite plus in my book.
Loved this collection of items left over from past relationships and reading the stories behind the break ups. Some were sad, some angry, some funny, but all were interesting. What items would you add?
A YA mashup of Ready Player One and Blade Runner! Fun, fast paced, with an ending that will make you want to become a hacker and hack into Lu's computer (I am not actually suggesting or condoning this, and thankfully I am way too old and lazy to turn hacker) to read the draft of book 2! I really enjoyed this book and the narration on the audiobook (available through our Libro.fm account) was fantastic!
Welcome to a world where you can sell your blood and your time for money. Where the rich stay young and the poor die young. Desperate to save her father, Jules returns to the one place where's she is most at danger- Everless, home of the Gerlings. Holland has done some impressive world building full of complex characters and powerful women, and each mystery that unfolds only increases the danger. As Jules discovers the truth behind the lies her past is built on, she begins to see the world around her in a new light. A thrilling start to a new series!
For fans of Paula Hawkins and Ruth Ware, this thriller is full of excellent twists and sharp turns! I started off listening to this on audio, but had to switch to a physical copy so that I could devour it. Pour yourself a glass of wine and settle in for the night as you read the story of recently divorced Vanessa and the young teacher Nellie on the threshold of marriage to the handsome and rich David- the man both Vanessa and Nellie love. Nothing is at it seems in this book, and no one is to be trusted.
I love that this book exists, I just wish it could have been known 70 years ago. The work these brave, unsung women did to help the war effort is amazing. For fans of Hidden Figures and Radium Girls, Liza Mundy shines the light on women who were breaking codes and helping to revolutionize cryptology. After listening to the audiobook, I also had the pleasure of hearing Liza Mundy talk about her book here at Fountain (we have signed copies!). You might want to speak to your grandmothers and great grandmothers, because a lot of the Code Girls don't know that it's been declassified- prepare to be amazed!
This is a book for Readers with a capital R! Will Schwalbe delights and details the pleasure and necessity of reading. Every chapter features a different book and something that the author got from reading it- Slowing Down, Choosing Kindness, Recharging, Losing, Mastering the Art of Reading (of which I personally underline most of the chapter) and so many more. In fact the only times I put this book down was to write down my own feelings on what I had just read. A perfect book for any bookworm, and one that I'll be sharing with my book club friends!
Forget Gone Girl and Girl on the Train. Move over Big Little Lies and The Woman in Cabin 10. Because Fingersmith has one of the best jaw dropping, plot twisting, Oh-My-God-Did-That-Just-Happen moments that I've ever read.
You will never look at rain the same way, I guarantee it. These four novellas are absolutely brilliant! Joe Hill won me over a long time ago with his short stories and novels, but it turns out that he's equally as good as his dad (Stephen King) at churning out heart stopping, mind bending, soul shattering novellas as well. Thought provoking and chilling, Strange Weather is definitely going on my Best of 2017 list!
Lizzie Borden took an axe... or did she? Sarah Schmidt takes us inside the Borden household before and after the murders of Andrew and Abby Borden. Schmidt's writing is so good that you can feel the pressure building in the house, taste the sweetness of the pears and sharpness of tainted mutton on the tips of tongues, imagine the smell as the hot summer days weighs heavily, suffocatingly on the inhabitants of the Borden home. Did Lizzie simply snap, did Bridget the maid hack her way to new employment, did Lizzie's uncle intervene to protect his nieces, or was it a stranger? Prepare for sharp-edged read!
I don't know if swoon crying is a thing, but this book had me doing both. I really loved Dara, her strength and fearlessness pre-accident, and the grieving but determined Dara post accident, and watching her slowly piece herself back together was my second favorite thing. My most favorite thing was Ethan, that's where the swooning bit comes in. Totally worth the runny nose and leaking eyes I have after finishing the book!
For fans of The Nightingale! This is a fascinating and unique look at three very different women in post War Germany. Marianne- Nazi resistor and war widow, is determined to keep her promise to look after the widows and families of her fellow resistors who were executed when their plot against Hitler failed. She takes in first beautiful and lost Benita and her young son Martin, then quiet and strong Ania and her two little boys. The women forge a new life together, their pasts and secrets revealed in flashbacks. Takes an honest look at the Germans who got swept up in Hitler's rhetoric and those who fought to take him down.
Every reader has been asked that impossible question "What's your favorite book?". I used to dread that question, knowing I would have to pull out charts listing my favorite authors, and narrowing it down to their best books. Pie charts and math were involved. Until I read The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and it finally answered the question of what was my favorite book of all time. Full of magic and beauty, it makes my heart ache with longing, because it's a world I would love to visit. If you get the chance, I'd also recommend this one on audio because it's narrated by the talented Jim Dale.