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Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Interesting, Beautiful
Suspenseful!

I discovered this author about a year ago when I read her ‘Scent of Rain and Lightning’. It was one of my best reads of 2010, so I wanted to try her again.

This is a murder-mystery with a touch of romance, similar to the author’s ‘The Scent of Rain and Lightning’. The book was also set in Kansas, as was the previous book. The author did a wonderful job of describing the scenery of Kansas; quite a feat, since I’ve been through Kansas and was unimpressed with the scenery!

 
Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Dramatic, Informative
WW II Historical Fiction

There are really two stories here; one from the war years in Germany, and the other from current day El Paso. The story begins when Reba, a reporter, interviews Elsie, the owner of a German bakery in El Paso. Elsie grew up in Germany during the war years, and as a young woman, was engaged to an SS officer. Reba is engaged to Riki, a border crossing guard and US citizen born of Mexican parents, who came to America legally.
The story raises some interesting questions about how far one goes in supporting laws and government without compromising one’s ethics.

Eyes of Justice (A Triple Threat Novel) by Lis Wiehl, April Henry
 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Fun, Dramatic
Better to read the first book first...

Most of our group felt that this book would have been better if they'd have gotten to know Cassie by reading the earlier books before this one. But we did find the book interesting, though bit slow at the beginning. This was one of our better book club 'discussions'.

 
Fun, Slow, Unconvincing
Slow moving story

I never really got into the book. It moved very slowly and it took a long time to get the background story. The book bounced back and forth between present day and the background story, switching off chapters. While I usually find this technique interesting, this time it didn\\\'t work for me. I would have preferred to have a short \\\'current-day\\\' introduction, and then to tell the story from the start and lead back to today.

The Choice by Suzanne Woods Fisher
 
Cute Story

Cute story. At the beginning it seemed somewhat predictable, but as the story went on, it became more complicated, and left a lot of guessing as to who would end up with who. I liked the characters, and would read more in this series if it involved the same characters and I could learn more about them.

The Healer of Fox Hollow by Joann Rose Leonard
 
Book Club Recommended
Slow, Dramatic, Interesting
Slow But Good!

This book was a little slow to get started, but once it did, it was interesting. Layla\\\'s mother died in childbirth, and Layla was left with her father, who loved her very much, but struggled with being a single parent. Her aunt, her mother\\\'s sister, was very supportive, especially when Layla lost her tongue and became mute at age 5. How she lost her tongue was a bit of a mystery. She attended church with her neighbors who attended a church of \\\'snake handlers\\\', and Layla was convinced a snake visited and stole her tongue. As she grew, she was recognized as a healer, able to heal people with her touch. The town doctor is a skeptic, both about how Layla lost her tongue and about her abilities to heal. Though the story is slow moving, it is a good story with much to think about. It is a book that is improved by discussion, and our book club was lucky enough to be able to discuss it with the author. If you are looking for a good \'discussion\' book be sure to take a look at this one!

 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Optimistic, Inspiring
Improves with Discussion

This is a book that definitely improves with discussion. As a stand-alone book, I found it slow-moving and it didn\\\'t hold my interest. But as it was a book club selection, I did finish. Like a lot of books, this one led to some interesting discussions. The discussions were more interesting than the book itself.

Love Anthony by Lisa Genova
 
Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Inspiring, Dramatic
Couldn't Put This Down!

Five Days of Fear by David Kovach
 
Interesting, Unconvincing, Poorly Written
Interesting Storyline but the Writing Needs Work

This is one of the few books our book club agreed on. All thought it was a good storyline, but that the writing was not good. The characters were one dimensional, and much of storyline unrealistic. This would make a good Lifetime movie with some editing and a good screenwriter. We all liked the book, but.....

The Rest of Her Life CD by Laura Moriarty
 
Book Club Recommended
Somewhat Unfinished

This was an interesting book, but the ending was unsatisfactory. Kara is a high school student who has, thought an accident, taken the life of another student. She struggles with guilt. But the story is told from the viewpoint of her mother. There is no real resolution to the story; we don't know if Kara gets past her feelings of guilt. However, I do think this would be a good book club pick with lots of 'discussion points'.

The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Interesting, Insightful
Great book club pick!

This is one of the few books the entire book club rated highly. It deals with difficult subjects but gives so much to discuss. Is assisting a suicide ever ok? What is forgiveness and who has the right to forgive? Should there ever be a statute of limitations on murder? What is accomplished by deporting a 95 year old criminal? These are just a few of the topics your book club will want to discuss after reading this book!

 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Informative, Dramatic
A WOW Read

This book was an emotional roller coaster. A major theme in the book is honor, and how our understanding of honor shapes who we are. This will be a great book club selection with discussion ranging from the definition of honor to family obligation and beyond!

 
Insightful, Dramatic, Interesting
Better Choices Out There

A couple of our members really enjoyed this one; these were 'older set' who actually lived the 70s and enjoyed some of the flashbacks. Most of our members thought the book was average at best, and one couldn't even bring herself to read farther than a few chapters. The subject matter, the death of a child and suicide' were too depressing for her. With the right group this could be an interesting discussion, but for our group, there are better choices out there.

In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume
 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Informative, Insightful
Interesting but nothing special.

We need a 'mayby' button...thumbs to the side??? Our book club picked this one because some had grown up reading Judy Blume or had read her to their children. Most were a little disappointed by the book. It was interesting, but nothing special.
That said, the book DID lead to interesting discussions. None of us had heard of these events, so we discussed history and how air service has evolved since then. The book DOES give a glimpse into life in the early 50s, so if that is your interest, read the book! But don't expect everyone in your book club to enjoy it as much as you did.

 
Scary, Unconvincing, Difficult
Hit and Miss for our group

This one was a mixed bag for our group with ratings ranging from 2½ to 4 stars. Most questioned Yasmin's actions and motivations in risking her daughter's life. Some found the book hard to get into and didn't really feel it was interesting until the final chapter. And all felt the ending was ambiguous, with none of being sure what really happened.

Orphan #8: A Novel by Kim van Alkemade
 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Graphic, Informative
Sad peek into history of orphan care.

The story is told in alternating time periods, which really worked well for me! We follow Rachel and Sam as they experience many of the historical events of the first half of the twentieth century; the orphanage, the depression, WWII, and now the post-war period. Grown-up Rachel is a nurse working in a home for the elderly on floor 5, where it is understood patients come to spend their final days. When Dr. Mildred Solomon appears as one of her patients, Rachel recognizes her as the doctor who ‘treated’ her at the orphanage. Meeting the doctor again triggers painful memories for Rachel and leads to ethical decisions she must make as she faces her past.

This book will make a fantastic book club selection! There are so many discussion points a group can touch on; medical experimentation, gay marriage, foster care, the Holocaust and Nazis, and Israel and Palestine, to mention just a few. The book touches on many of the same issues that were touched on in All I Know and Love, but in my opinion, this one did it so much better! .

 
Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Interesting, Informative
Strong Women Out of Africa

This was a fascinating read about a strong, pioneering woman. They characters were well written and interesting and the glimpse into colonial Africa was informative! It was all the more interesting because even though the story is fiction, the characters were real people! The book gave our book club much to discuss!

 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Optimistic, Interesting
Perfect Summer Read

This is a perfect summer read for an afternoon by the pool. It has everything you want from a good summer romance; conflict, steam, and a happy ending. However, if you choose to take it to another level, that is also possible. This could be a great selection for a summer book club. Not only will it keep the reader entertained, but the book should lead to some great discussions.

See my complete review on my blog, Time 2 Read.

I received an advanced review copy of this book through the Penguin First To Read program.

 
Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Romantic, Dramatic

Our book club enjoyed this one and we had a great discussion. Sometimes the book was a little predictable and sometimes the heroine made questionable decisions that frustrated the reader, but the fast-paced action at the end made up for the imperfections in the story.

The Other Widow: A Novel by Susan Crawford
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Interesting, Confusing
Book groups will want to discuss the ending!

Engrossing — fast-paced — with a twist at the end!

This book kept me reading and I grew to like most of the characters. Every time I thought I'd figured out 'who done it', I hoped I was wrong! This will be a great selection for book clubs. It's one of the few books our group has read and ALL enjoyed!

The Winter Sister by Megan Collins
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Confusing, Interesting
Good But I Wanted More

This was a Feb 2019 Book ot the Month selection. It was billed as thriller, but to be honest, it wasn’t all that suspenseful.There was not a lot of suspense because we already know there was a murder 16 years ago, but there is a mystery, because the murderer has never been identified. Nevertheless, I did find it very interesting; almost ‘unputdownable’. I would call if more of a family drama with a touch of mystery.

The story reminds me a little of All the Missing Girls and The Long and Faraway Gone, where young woman solve confront cold case murders from the past. In this story, Sylvie is the younger sister who was 14 at the time of the murder of her older sister, Persephone, and Sylvie feels responsible. Her mother, who she was formerly close to, abandoned Sylive emotionally after Persephone’s death, submerging herself in drugs and alcohol.

There was a twist to the story that I guessed early on, maybe 50 pages in. But while I guessed the twist to the family drama, it could have gone 2 or 3 slightly different ways and I wasn’t sure which way it would go. The murderer was a little harder for me to figure out. The author did a pretty good job of playing ‘it was him….wait, no…it was him….wait, maybe it WAS him…’.

While I enjoyed the story, it left a few questions unanswered. These were not directly related to the murder, so it’s fair to say the story ended, but an epilogue telling a bit about the characters 5-10 years down the road would have left me feeling more satisfied with the book.

This is a great pick for readers who enjoy occasional mysteries and family dramas. This book will give book clubs plenty to discuss. There are discussion questions on the publisher’s website.

 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Interesting, Inspiring
Nonfiction that reads like a Novel

Wow! This book is amazing,. The story is a nonfiction account of the young women who lost their lives due to industrial radium poisoning. Though it is nonfiction, it reads like a novel; a horrifying, heartbreaking novel!

I flew through the book and was hardly able to put it down. The story is a mix of medical drama, courtroom drama, and family drama. You really should read it for yourself. And then encourage your book club to read it, because you are going to want to talk about it!

I read an ARC from Bookreporter.com

 
Book Club Recommended
Beautiful, Interesting, Inspiring
Everything but the end

This book was slow to start, but after about 50 pages I couldn't put it down. If was fantastic—until the last page and a half. What a shocker, and a disappointment! Book clubs will love this one!

 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Informative, Inspiring
Better Than I Expected

I didn't go into this book expecting much. I don't usually enjoy memoirs, as the writers usually come off as self-centered and their stories are often no different than the typical reader. This author was no exception, but her story was actually interesting and she related experiences that are different from what most of us have. I found the first half more interesting than the second half, but all was readable and our group had a good discussion.

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