Review: Pod by Laline Paull

If you loved Paull’s The Bees, you’ll probably love this one too. It’s not an easy read, for a couple of reasons.  One is that, like The Bees, you have to really get into the mindset of the ocean creatures in this book. There’s a fair amount of unfamiliar terminology, sometimes related to the biological functioning…

Review: What Happened to Ruthy Ramirez by Claire Jimenez

I don’t think this is a perfect book, but I loved this story about a Puerto Rican family in Staten Island, New York. I found it a fantastic and moving first novel. The story revolves around the disappearance of Ruthy Ramirez, age 13, who never comes home after track practice. Ruthy’s mother, her older sister…

My February Reading Wrap-Up

February began with a work trip to Washington and a weekend tasting wine outside of Seattle, but the rest of the month has been difficult due to family health issues.  Here’s what I read in February: My favorite reads:  I’ve already reviewed Signal to Noise and The Last Girl, which were both incredible reads. My…

Twelve Novels that Blend History and Fantasy

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, is a “genre freebie”. I decided to write about something that I’ve been reading lately, historical fantasy novels. By this I don’t mean fantasy novels set in the past, I mean books that are primarily historical fiction, focusing on actual history and real places,…

Review: Signal to Noise by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I’m so glad that Moreno-Garcia’s publisher is going back and reissuing her earliest books, because both this and Certain Dark Things were fantastic. I wasn’t sure I’d like this one – the backdrop of 80’s music didn’t appeal to me much. I wasn’t expecting this book to bring me right back to what it felt like…

Review: The Last Girl by Nadia Murad

This isn’t really a review because this is the kind of book that’s nearly impossible to review. It was impressive, inspiring, devastating, and informative. Nadia Murad grew up in the village of Kocho in Northern Iraq, in a small community of Yazidi, an ancient religion and ethnic minority. She describes the persecution of the Yazidi…

My January Reading Wrap-Up

January was a great month for reading! Of course that’s because it was a lousy month for other things, between the wintry weather and getting sick.  But at least my reading year is off to a great start.  Here’s what I read in January: My favorite reads:  My favorite has to be Our Missing Hearts, which…

Review: Exiles by Jane Harper

I’m a big Jane Harper fan, so I was thrilled to pick up her new book on NetGalley.  Harper writes mysteries set in remote parts of Australia. In this third book of the Aaron Falk series, investigator Falk is visiting friends in the fictional Marralee Valley, in Southern Australia’s wine country.  I’ve actually been to…

Reading Around the World: Reviews of The Wolf Den and This Rebel Heart

In this post are two shorter reviews of books that are set in other countries that I highly recommend. Both provided two things I love: rich historical detail and strong, interesting characters. Both are also set in places I’ve visited: Budapest and Pompeii. The Wolf Den by Elodie Harper Recommended by Lory at Entering the…

Review: The Galaxy, and the Ground Within by Becky Chambers

I’ve been recommending Chambers a lot lately, even to my husband who has pretty different science fiction tastes. This is surprising because I didn’t like Chambers’ first book, A Long Way to a Small, Dark Planet even though most people raved about it. I found it a bit contrived and self-conscious. But, in my eyes at…


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