Coming of age story with 11-year-old Brigid as the protagonist. She has a convincing voice and she is not a character full of insolence. A refreshing...moreComing of age story with 11-year-old Brigid as the protagonist. She has a convincing voice and she is not a character full of insolence. A refreshing change. Brigid's family life has been one struggle after another. On the cusp of womanhood, Brigid has already keenly observed personalities and motives. Living for generations as coal miners in Pennsylvania, this is a story of familial love, betrayal, and commitment.
This book grabbed me with the very first words. The themes in this book may be the same themes from other novels, but the story and the characters stand on their own and are quickly becoming unforgettable.(less)
A precocious child whose circumstances force her to grow up fast because she is saddled with an immature single mother. I read the first 50 pages and...moreA precocious child whose circumstances force her to grow up fast because she is saddled with an immature single mother. I read the first 50 pages and then flipped to Part 3 to see how it ended. Ends pretty much as I figured. I saw no need to give any of my time to reading the middle portion just to fill in the blanks as I knew this was a story line that would leave me as soon as I closed the book. Annie Weatherwax clearly writes in a voice that critics like or else she would not have won prizes for fiction. Her fellow authors likewise give her glowing reviews.
This will be a wonderful story for many readers looking for an afternoon of escape and for a mother-daughter love story. (less)
Spanning a timeframe between the 1930s and the 1970s, Rebecca Rasmussen does not disappoint in this exquisite novel, Evergreen.
Eveline joins her new husband in the wilderness of Minnesota in the 1930s. All that happens after that will touch the heart and soul of every reader on some level. The stories told of the characters in this story will encourage today's reader to appreciate the life we have today. You will find yourself wanting to love the people in your life on an entirely different level. You may even find that you want to hold on to them a little tighter and never let go.
The descriptions of the wilderness and the river were so real that they simply appeared in my mind's eye without any conjuring. Yet they were not tedious, never-ending stories of flora and fauna.
There are several heroes and heroines throughout, but Eveline and her offspring will haunt readers for days to come. This is a very moving story of mothers and sons - mothers and daughters. A story about the ties that can never really be broken. This book is one to be savored up to the very last page - the very last paragraph - even the very last two words on the page. (less)
Left me a little dry. Harper Lee turned out not to be the intriguing character I hoped she would be. However, I think there was a lot more to Nelle Ha...moreLeft me a little dry. Harper Lee turned out not to be the intriguing character I hoped she would be. However, I think there was a lot more to Nelle Harper Lee than what was allowed to be printed in this tome. My favorite parts in relation to Harper Lee were the explanations of how her parents selected her name and why she chose the name she did for her writing. Ms. Mills (author) had to share a portion of her personal story to explain to the reader how she became friends with the Lee sisters and how she came to live next door to them.
There were interesting, warm segments that stirred longings for a slower and more introspective lifestyle. And interesting information about Nelle's relationship with Truman Capote.
All in all, I am glad I read the book since I am a Mockingbird fan - of both the book and the movie. The writing was good enough to hold my interest to the end. But as I closed the book, I was left wishing I could learn more about Miss Alice and the maid who assisted her more so than I cared about Harper Lee.(less)
When I started this book, I thought it would be the typical rich girl/slave girl comparison. It did start off that way when Sarah Grimke, daughter of...moreWhen I started this book, I thought it would be the typical rich girl/slave girl comparison. It did start off that way when Sarah Grimke, daughter of a Charleston solicitor and plantation owner, is given Hetty as a birthday gift on her 11th birthday to become her handmaiden. Sarah does not want another human being as a gift but family and the culture of the day will not allow her to refuse Hetty. The two young girls become friends and begin to get into the typical scenarios as in other books of this genre. I am so glad that I did not let this cause me to return the book to the library unread. As I moved into part two, a full cast of characters along with their successes and foibles came into play.
It is was also nice to learn that there really was a Sarah Grimke who lived in Charleston and that she, along with one of her sisters, fought for emancipation. In their fight for emancipation, the sisters also began to fight for women's rights. Now I anticipate finishing the novel so that I can move on to find some biographies of the Grimke sisters.
For a pampered child of a plantation owner, Sarah lives a life of betrayal, unrequited love, and loneliness. In the author's notes, Author Kidd writes..."It seemed to me she had invented her wings not so much in spite of these things, but because of them."
This book held my interest until the very end. Definitely not a "follow the steps" novel, you will wonder what is going to happen to Sarah and Hetty right up to the very last paragraph. Extremely well written historical fiction.(less)
TEN STARS to Amy Belding Brown's Flight of the Sparrow. Couldn't put it down. For the past several years I have felt that every book tells the same ol...moreTEN STARS to Amy Belding Brown's Flight of the Sparrow. Couldn't put it down. For the past several years I have felt that every book tells the same old sad stories just cast with characters of different names/descriptions. You would think the "old south" has nothing but poor little rich debutantes rebelling against their planned marriages. If I see another "secrets revealed" book where the heroine finds her great grandmother's lost love letters in a trunk in the attic or hidden behind a floor board, I fear I may retreat from reading new authors completely.
At last, something different. The novel is based on a narrative written Mary Rowlandson, a real woman who actually was alive once upon a time. This is a story of a Puritan wife/mother living in the Massachusetts Bay Colony who was captured by Indians. Mary was already feeling constricted by the strict rules of her Puritan husband and the Puritan community. Her life with her Indian captors causes her to reconsider what she has always been taught and believed about the true meaning of freedom and independence. This is a story of survival, hope, and understanding love at its deepest levels. It was a mesmerizing story that leaves the reader considering your own meanings of freedom, independence, and love.
Now to go back and read Ms. Brown's first novel - Mr. Emerson's Wife. Then eagerly anticipate her next work.(less)
I'm was so excited to receive this book in a giveaway. But am beginning to figure out why it was being given away. Sure glad I did not spend my money...moreI'm was so excited to receive this book in a giveaway. But am beginning to figure out why it was being given away. Sure glad I did not spend my money on it. 100 pages in and there has been lots of repetition. Understanding that the book is supposed to be mysterious and intriguing, I'm finding it simply boring. She is taking much too long to reveal the mystery. And what little bit that has been revealed so far is presented in snippets that make it hard to follow. I find I am constantly going back too previous chapters to see if I can piece it together. If when I finally get to the big "secret room"'and find nothing but a dead body or a hidden-away homosexual lover, I will be very mad at myself for wasting time on this one m(less)
Mesmerizing describes it perfectly. Set in early 29th century, it chronicles the love between two people with extremely different backgrounds. But it...moreMesmerizing describes it perfectly. Set in early 29th century, it chronicles the love between two people with extremely different backgrounds. But it also about love at all it's different levels. The characters are so well developed that I felt as if I were in the room with them. Alice Hoffman is a literary genius This novel will keep you intrigued and guessing all the way to the last chapter. (less)
It was an OK book. The beginning had me intrigued as it is written from the perspective of someone who had lived in the castle when the spell was cast...moreIt was an OK book. The beginning had me intrigued as it is written from the perspective of someone who had lived in the castle when the spell was cast on Beauty and the village. The characters were well developed and reading about their relationships and how life may have been in a castle and within the village was interesting. But the story fell apart for me and just ended with you figuring everything out near the end. No surprises. No marvelous ah-ha moments. A good read but did not make me want to go see what else this author has written.(less)
Reading this to prepare myself for reading the sequel Death of Santini. It is a hard book to read because the Santini (Bull Meecham) expresses his lov...moreReading this to prepare myself for reading the sequel Death of Santini. It is a hard book to read because the Santini (Bull Meecham) expresses his love to his family is less than loving ways. Colonel Bull Meecham is a fighter pilot with impressive military successes. Lillian Meecham is a true Southern "Steel Magnolia" with a love of literature and family. After years of moving from military base to military base, the family finally settles in a small bay town in South Carolina. The oldest son, Ben, often takes the brunt of Bull's cruelty. Both emotionally and physically.
A story of family and personal struggles. Very often heart-wrenching, the books if also filled with poignant images of how family is a lifeblood that can't be escaped. It is not difficult to figure out which character is based on Conroy himself. Your heart will both break and soar for this character. In the end, you realize his strength is displayed by his characteristic qualities rather than his fists.(less)
Octogenarian Albert Honig, a bachelor, is a third-generation beekeeper. He lives next door to two sisters he has known since childhood. When the siste...moreOctogenarian Albert Honig, a bachelor, is a third-generation beekeeper. He lives next door to two sisters he has known since childhood. When the sisters are discovered murdered, the police look to Albert to help solve the mystery. As the book unfolds, Albert recalls memories of the sisters and their intertwined lives. Arthur also weaves in the life and habits of bees throughout the story.
So far very interesting. One of the kind of books where you want to read just one more chapter.
The novel turned out to be a satisfying read. You get a little bit of everything - murder & mystery, family secrets, unrequited love. And along the way you get little vignettes of life in the beehive and how it often mimics human life.(less)