March was a good reading month for me! I enjoyed so many of the books I read and I was able to finally knock of a couple that have been on my TBR list for a long time.
Queen of Hearts – Kimmery Martin
I think I first heard about this book from Modern Mrs. Darcy and fell in love with the beautiful cover and the way she described it being like Grey’s Anatomy. Unfortunately it took awhile for my local library to get it, but it ended up being a Kindle deal and I ended up buying it. It did not disappoint…I enjoyed traveling along with them as they relived medical school and enjoyed seeing how a friendship can go through hard times, but still survive on the other side. I think it’s neat that the author is a doctor and how she used medical terminology throughout the book, but didn’t overdo it. It really gave it that Grey’s Anatomy feel that I enjoyed. This was a fun Spring read and I will be recommending it to friends and family who enjoy medical dramas. 4/5 stars
The Saturday Evening Girls Club – Jane Healy
I enjoyed this book about friendship between four girls and how different their lives were, but how used their friendship to strengthen each other and encourage each one to live out their ambitions and follow their dreams. Even though this was set back in the early 1900’s and was about immigrant families it was neat to see the same ideas, thoughts, and desires that women in present day have as well. This was an nice, easy read and I enjoyed learning about the origin and history of the “Evening Girls’ Clubs” that were popular at that time. This book wasn’t overly exciting and moved a bit slow at times, but it was a feel-good type of book and I enjoyed the little sayings at the beginning of each chapter. A few that were my favorites were:
Don’t be sweet, lest you be eaten up; don’t be bitter, lest you be spewed out. —Jewish proverb
Everyone is kneaded out of the same dough but not baked in the same oven. —Jewish proverb
People make plans and God laughs. —Jewish proverb
I enjoyed it and thought it was the perfect book to read to wind down after a long busy day before falling asleep. 3/5 stars
The Lost for Words Bookshop – Stephanie Butland
To be honest this book took me awhile to read and get into and I almost didn’t finish it, but I am so GLAD I did. The story started off very slow for me, but as it progressed the main character, Loveday, became more endearing despite her lack of confidence. I knew there was something important about Loveday’s past that was going to be revealed because of how the author brought up little hints in the beginning of the book and then further on in the book switched to short chapters from the past. I became so emotionally vested (definitely shed a few tears) in the story during the last third of the book that I didn’t want to put it down and was rooting for Loveday to the very end.
There were three sentences I highlighted that I want to remember and to share with you:
“There’s the simple love of books, of course: the knowledge that here is an escape, a chance to learn, a place for your heart and mind to romp and play.” – This is exactly how I think about books.
“…I suppose it’s the fact that these small memories come from the kind of tiny reminders that you simply can’t predict, and so can’t protect yourself from, and they catch you, paper cuts across the heart.” – I thought this was worded beautifully and so true. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned yet that my family (my dad, mom, sister and I) are going through a rough/hard time right now and we all are hurting and this resonated so much with me. Just out of the blue a small memory pops up and catches you off guard and makes it hurt just a little more.
“…knowing that I’d destroyed all of the things I’d worked so hard to give you – the confidence, the security, the sense of being loved – is what broke me every single day that we’ve been apart.” – I just fell apart at this sentence. In regards to the family situation referenced above…I feel like I am the “you” in this sentence. I don’t know how (especially being a parent now) you work so hard to give someone so much, but yet in one moment make it all crash down. This sentence just hit home too closely at this time in my life and I can’t stop thinking about it.
Go read this book if it sounds even a little interesting to you…give it until about halfway through before you decide if you want to keep going or abandon it, but I’m just gonna say that there is a reason it’s rated at 4.07 on Goodreads. 4/5 stars
Kindle – Overdrive
The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper – Phaedra Patrick
This book was charming! I listened to it on audio and enjoyed it so much! I fell in love with Arthur Pepper and was rooting for him the whole book. One of my favorite things the author wrote about was when Arthur described his life before as living in gray and then going on this journey of self-discovery changed his life into seeing in color. That has just really stuck with me since I’ve finished it. It’s our own choice if we want to continue plodding along in life only seeing gray, but we can change and choose to see in color and start to live life the way it’s intended to be lived. I loved this book and can’t wait to read more from this author! 5/5 stars
Audiobook – Hoopla
The Landscapes of Anne of Green Gables – Catherine Reid
The Anne of Green Gables series has been a LONG time favorite of mine. If anybody asked me what my absolute favorite book/author was, it would be Anne of Green Gables/Lucy Maud Montgomery. So the way I discovered this book was a little different…I was picking up some holds from the Library and one of my holds was “Anne Arrives” by Kallie George (side note – this was adorable and the illustrations were gorgeous. I have put these books by Kallie George on my Amazon wishlist for the girls!). I thought this book would be a good introduction to Anne Shirley for Emmalyn and Claire and hopefully begin their love for all things “Anne” as they get older. Well, as I was checking out the librarian saw that book and we started talking “Anne” and she mentioned that there was a beautiful book about Prince Edward Island and Green Gables. She checked to see if it was available and it was, so I went back and checked it out and am so glad I did! The pictures in this book are breathtaking and so pretty! It made me tell Robert that I want us to go to Prince Edward Island someday (I’ve always wanted to go, but this just intensified it). I did not realize that the book contained little notes/pictures/snippets of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s life and I found it to be very interesting and learned things about her that I did not know. It’s made me want to read more about Lucy’s life and read all of her books again! 5/5 stars
Hardback – Library
Inheritance – A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love – Dani Shapiro
I heard this recommended on by Anne Bogel on the What Should I Read Next podcast and when I heard the description, I knew it was something I wanted to read. This is a compelling story of a woman whose entire identity is thrown into disarray with a simple at-home DNA test. She struggles with how this discovery will change her life going forward, how it will affect her son, her faith, and relationship with remaining members of her father’s family. She struggles with not knowing if her father knew the truth. This memoir was a genuine look into Dani Shapiro’s search for her biological father and her journey to make peace with her identity.
“It turns out that it is possible to live an entire life—even an examined life, to the degree that I had relentlessly examined mine—and still not know the truth of oneself.“
I found it neat that the author write this book as she was experiencing it in real-time. I think that gave it an interesting feel since she shared a lot of what was going on in her head while going on this journey of self-discovery. I had never read anything by Dani Shapiro, but after reading this I now can see why she is a best-selling author. Even though this was a memoir, it read like a fiction book, kept my attention, and made me stay up late into the night wanting to know what happened next.
If you enjoy memoirs/autobiographies, genealogy, and family secrets…this is a book I highly recommend! 4/5 stars
Kindle – Overdrive
I’ve started a couple of books that I think will be 4 or 5 star worthy for April, so check back next month to see my thoughts on them!
Until next time…keep it simple.