Today's the day!
It's Book Review Day and here are five that I know you will love.
*Amazon affiliate links are used in this post.
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
Me Before You is the story of Louisa, called Lou by her family. Lou is unemployed as the book begins, but soon takes a job as a sitter for a quadriplegic young man. He is bitter and lonely and really just wants to die. Lou sets out to alter his state of mind and comes to understand him better and also to be an excellent caregiver for him. She attempts to get him to leave his home and do things and even plans outings. Some end disastrously, like visiting a race track, while others provide him with some ways to relax and do things. Since he was formerly a very active man it's hard to find something he has not already done and, of course, can no longer do in the same way. There are poignant moments and hilarious moments as Lou grows into herself through this experience. There is an under current of romance to this one, but nothing too startling or dramatic. It's a light, quick read. The ending may surprise you! It did me! (This book has also been made into a movie that is coming soon or already out!)
This is a young person's book, maybe high school age. In fact, the main characters are about 16. Miles is the main voice and he is a quirky, fun young man, a little obsessed with reading about and quoting the last words of famous people. His main quote he lives by is, "I go to seek a great perhaps." He leaves home to go to a boarding school in Alabama and meets an interesting new set of friends that just happens to include a girl named Alaska. The kids all do the sort of things teenagers do and you may find yourself wishing they would stop being so immature, but that is what makes this book click. Eventually, you will find a tragedy occurring, but this book is quite good, funny, and somewhat poignant. A great and quick read!
This is the beautiful story of Molly and an elderly woman named Vivian. They both share the fact they are orphans. The story of both of them is woven together as Vivian tells Molly about her girlhood. Vivian was born as Niamh in Ireland and immigrated with her parents to the USA. When her parents both die she is turned over to the Children's Aid Society in New York where she then is placed aboard a train to the west- the Orphan train. As the train stops at various stations the group of orphans is paraded out to meet their prospective new "families". The evening before the first stop of the train the children are told what is going to happen. They will stand before the crowd and wait to be picked.
One little boy asks, "What if no one wants me?"
Oh, just break my heart!
It turns out that strong boys are picked first because they will be workers on the farms. Some people want the babies. Others might pick the girls to work in their houses.
Heart-breaking and based on true stories. You will love this book and the way the characters are brought to life. It's a book you will not want to end! And one you will not forget!
Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight
This is a book that every parent should read. You will learn all about what kids really do to each other in today's world. This is the story of Kate, who gets a phone call at work telling her something has happened at her teenage daughter's boarding school. Later she is told that her daughter, Amelia, was upset over being caught cheating and jumped to her death. However, Kate soon receives an anonymous text message that says, "She didn't jump." Amelia's story is told with her text messages and emails as her mom fights to find out what really happened to her. Very intense little book!
The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma
Oh my, I loved this book so much. It's the story of Alice and her dad. Dad is a librarian and loves books and reading. When Alice is young he sets out to read to her for 100 days straight. This becomes an obsession with the two of them as they tackle book after book. Soon, their reading streak has grown to enormous numbers of days (in the thousands). A few times one of them cannot be at home at night (think teenager sleepovers) and dad will call her to read over the phone. This continues until she goes away to college. Profound book. Each chapter tells a story of their life and some about the reading and books they choose. The ending is bittersweet, but marvelous. Dad is forced out of his job as a librarian and he starts going to a local nursing home to read to the old folks. Near the end of the book you will find this passage and you will probably cry. I did.
The setting is at the nursing home as dad arrives.
"I came in to read to my last group of the day, and there was this huge crowd in one room, in rows and rows of chairs, maybe forty or fifty people. They were all facing the same way, and I assumed they were watching a movie. Well I was pretty disappointed, since this was my usual reading time and they knew I was coming, but I decided I would just have to read to whoever was free. I went up to the front desk to sign in, and the woman told me, "They're waiting for you." She pointed at that same room, and I realized that everyone was sitting quietly, looking at me."
That day the dad read to this very large audience.
The book ends with Alice writing about the Reading Promise because that is really what the reading was all about. Her dad promised to read to her everyday and he did.
Okay, friends, these are some books I can recommend and I hope you try them. Come back in a month for the June Book Review edition!
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