I really loved the first one but this second one was a doubie for me. Not a fan of the mystery and I felt there was too much discussion of property diI really loved the first one but this second one was a doubie for me. Not a fan of the mystery and I felt there was too much discussion of property disputes and development discussion that I got a little bored. The book centered on those things but I felt the author described it just a little too much. ...more
This was a wonderful book and will stick with me for a very long time. It gave me a great deal to think about regarding race, the immigrant experienceThis was a wonderful book and will stick with me for a very long time. It gave me a great deal to think about regarding race, the immigrant experience and our society as a whole. Chimanda Ngozi Adichie is a very perceptive observer and the reader can really see that in her writing. She writes of social conventions very much like Jane Austen but on a much more global scale.
I would recommend this book to anyone.
Why four stars then? (I'd do 4.5 if I could)
Some/many of her supporting characters abruptly left the book without a resolution and I found that a little bothersome. The main character is a Nigerian immigrant, Ifemelu, who, at one point was a nanny to two kids while in college. All of a sudden, she's dating a member of the family and this family with whom she's been working just vanishes. The book starts with Ifemelu getting her hair braided at an African salon in NJ and the person braiding her hair speaks of her issues finding a husband. The braider confides in Ifemelu that she's having some immigration issues and Ifemelu states that she will be able to assist her as she returns to Nigeria. A family emergency occurs for Ifemelu do I get why she can't deal with the issues her braider presented her but, as a reader, I couldn't help but wonder why even bring it up? Why add this complexity to this character?
This happened enough times for me to raise an eyebrow.
Regardless I'm anxiously awaiting more casting news for the movie. In the mean time, I recommend this to all. Learn of new experiences. ...more
Review to come this upcoming week but this was my favorite Maggie Hope book. Might be biased seeing as how it was set in DC.
I really enjoyed the latesReview to come this upcoming week but this was my favorite Maggie Hope book. Might be biased seeing as how it was set in DC.
I really enjoyed the latest installment of the Maggie Hope series and this is my favorite so far, perhaps because I'm biased and work in DC but it was nice to read of a story set in my city during my favorite season of Christmas. I am a long time lover in historical fiction and am starting to read more mysteries as well. One complaint of some books would be that yes, the author is centering the plot on a war but does not address other equally not so pretty societal issues. I very thankfully did not have that issue with Mrs. Roosevelt's Confidante. You read of Maggie's adventures in the White House but she also explores horrible racial issues of the US at the time. It felt more accurate and real than other historical fiction books I've read. I read of some situations Maggie herself was addressing her personal and inaccurate associations with race as well. So while I will always look forward to the next Maggie Hope book and will look up to her, the reader is also let in to her weaknesses. That kind of realness is what I appreciated most about this book. ...more
I am someone who hates sugar coating things. For example, if I make my husband a dessert he doesn't likI'll divide this into positives and negatives.
I am someone who hates sugar coating things. For example, if I make my husband a dessert he doesn't like, I always appreciate it when he goes "yeah, that was a good experiment but I didn't care for it." Sure he could lie and say it was wonderful but I appreciate it when he doesn't. Keep things real. Don't be a jerk about it but don't lie either.
I say this because of the changes we see in Atticus. To Kill a Mockingbird was written from the point of view of a young girl so of course she'll think the world of him:
"...now you, Miss, born with your own conscience, somewhere along the line fastened it like a barnacle onto your father's. As you grew up, when you were grown, totally unknown to yourself, you confused your father with God. You never saw him as a man with a man's heart, and a man's failings--I'll grant you it may have been hard to see, he makes so few mistakes, but he makes 'em like all of us. You were an emotional cripple, leaning on him, getting the answers from him, assuming that your answers would always be his answers."
So while I might not like that Atticus has racist tendencies, I'm also not surprised.
This was an interesting story of characters we know and love growing and that's what might freak out other people.
As far as negatives are concerned, I had some issues with the pace of the book. Some flashback stories went on a little too long for me. Additionally, there were some times, while reading it, where I thought, "holy run-on sentence, batman!" ...more
I'd want to give it 3.5 stars. They mystery has a lot of side stories most of it irrelevant to the story which got tiresome. But I still very much lovI'd want to give it 3.5 stars. They mystery has a lot of side stories most of it irrelevant to the story which got tiresome. But I still very much love Penny's writing. The characters and the complexity of their relationships is what keeps me coming back. ...more