Books I Read in June 2013

Life After Life

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

I loved the concept of this book - it reminded me of my obsession with Choose Your Own Adventure books when I was in grade school.  Sometimes I'd just read them straight through to see all the different ways the story could play out and that's sort of how Ursula's story/stories unfold with each new life she's given. I immediately empathized with her and her family full of colorful characters. I so wanted to see each of them have his or her happy ending, and that pulled me through. However, when her beloved brother Teddy posed the question of reincarnation "What if we had a chance to do it again and again, until we finally did get it right? Wouldn't that be wonderful?" And Ursula replies, "I think it would be exhausting." Therein lies the rub: after awhile, the endless re-boot of the story became a bit tedious - especially during the dark and horrible times of WWII. Overall, though, I enjoyed the book a great deal.

Me Before You

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

I'm pretty much at a loss for words... Suffice it to say that I'll never forget this book. It's just beautiful and wonderful in every way.  Although, if you don't like books that are almost engineered to make you sob your eyes out, it might not be the book for you.  I don't seek out 'Beaches' type of books (damn I loved that one, too), but it came highly recommended from so many sources, and I do love British humor, which this book is chock full of - "Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion." Name that movie!  Also a tearjerker!

Pure (Pure, #1)

Pure by Julianna Baggott

I haven't given up on a book in awhile, but I just couldn't keep reading this YA dystopian story; I must be burnt out on the genre. I gave it a fighting chance - I was already halfway through, but I have so many other books I'd rather read.  I liked some of the ideas, and I'm curious as to what will happen to the characters, but I can wait for the movie. Yes, I believe it's been optioned already. Just as with Ender's Game, I think it goes on too many political rants and dull tangents.  Speaking of Ender, I can't WAIT to see that movie - looks way more promising than the book.

Keeping the Moon

Keeping the Moon by Sarah Dessen

So, I saw a lot of hype about this Sarah Dessen novel that just came out: The Moon and More.  I was intrigued because I'd never heard of her before and polled my favorite book bloggers (Elizabeth, Janssen, and Shalini) on which of her many books I should read first.  I put Keeping the Moon, This Lullaby and The Truth About Forever on hold and this one came in first.  It was a great introduction to her books; I love coming of age novels and this was one I could totally empathize with, as a former fat kid/girl that was picked on. Really, anyone who was ever a teenage girl could relate; Dessen's writing is beautifully evocative of those teen years. It was a bit predictable and cheesy, but that was part of why I loved it.  They're like devouring Judy Blume books: quick reads, good stories, graceful writing, and wonderful characters.  I'm almost done reading This Lullaby right now - also wonderful.


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