My Own Little Book Corner

Thursday, October 5, 2017

2017 Books Read - September

The Life We Bury by Allen Eskens

I enjoyed this book.   It was a little far fetched at times - I mean how many times can you survive surprise attacks and a kidnapping?! The main character, Joe Talbert, is in college given an assignment to interview a stranger and write about their life.   He ends up in a nursing home interviewing a Viet Nam vet who had been convicted of murder.   Joe becomes drawn in by the vet and decides to figure out what is truth and what isn't.  A well told story that had more than one character that re-enforces the idea of how easy it is to judge when you don't know a person and what life has brought their way.  

Nowhere is a Place by Bernice McFadden

This is a good story, but I didn't like the way it was told.   It switches some between modern day and back through the years to tell the story of a family.   Their life through the generations was anything but flowers and rainbows.  It's hard to read about some of the situations and to realize how bad things were in slavery days and how all that affected people.   It was also interesting to read how some people could have used their wisdom to live a better life than what would appear available to them.   I just never got into a rhythm with the author's style.   I really wanted to love this book, but ended with a feeling of just ok.

American Fire: Love, Arson, and Life in a Vanishing Land by Monica Hesse

A nonfiction book based on arson that was committed on the Virginia peninsula.   This is an interesting read as there is a lot of background about the area and the people who live there.   The arson occurs in a small isolated town, with plenty of abandoned buildings yet it took them quite a while to solve the crime.  It is interesting as to how the arson started and why.   While not excusing the actions, it lay's out how the arsonists reached the point they did.   Another story, this time true, that makes you realize there is often more to a story than what the surface appears.

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley

I thought this book was going to be a survivor's story - which it is - but it is also the victim's stories.  While telling about the plane crash and how things were pieced together to solve the reason for the crash, the author also introduces us to each character before the fall from the sky.   I liked a lot about this book, but found a couple of things that made me roll my eyes a bit.  Overall it is a good read though and I recommend it.

My Husband's Wife by Jane Corry

There weren't many people in this story that I like.  It's a story of self centered, depressing people.  Throughout the book I never got a true feel for the relationship between Ed and Lilly - was love ever there?   If so, were they ever aware of it?  I was well into the book when some background information shed a little light, which helped explain some things.   It did take some different twists and turns, but not one of my favorite this month.

Child of God by Lolita Files

Several times I thought I'd stop reading this book, but then I found myself so deep into it that I decided to finish.  I am ok with stories about the rougher side of life.   They can enlighten and make one think about how people are the way they are.  This book was so over the top though that I just could not wrap my mind around it.  Very few of the characters had any redeeming qualities and while reasons were given for their behavior to a certain extent, I just had a hard time feeling anything for them.   I don't know if it was the writing style or just what felt like a pile on of so many things.  Add to it that were people that would have helped them find their way out as best they could and it just left me frustrated in  a way,.

There's incest,  violence, drugs, witchcraft, prostitution, multiple deaths and  murder all by unsympathetic people.   I really wanted to feel sympathy for them and understand but for most of them, I just couldn't.   Such evil.   At least it was a quick read, but in case you couldn't tell, no way would I recommend this one.

The Stars Are Fire by Anita Shreve

I feel mixed about this one.  It's another one that I went into thinking I was going to love the story, but felt a little disappointed.   The characters just seemed off a little as far as being interesting.   For the most part I felt as if they were never developed fully,   It almost felt like a summer read that was suppose to be more.   All in all an average book to me.