Books I Read This Week 2019 – 08

An okay week of reading this week. Some great, some less great.  Here are my goodreads reviews. If you’re on goodreads, add me as a friend so I can see your books too! 

The Lost Man (4 stars):   Mystery doesn’t tend to be my favorite genre. Usually novels with a major mystery in their core tend to be very plot driven and don’t spend much time on character development, especially on side characters. I prefer stories with rich, deep character development. 

Over the years, I’ve found a handful of exceptions to this rule. Mystic River was one of the first books I read where the character development was deep and rich. I’ve read several other Dennis Lehane novels and he seems to be reasonably consistent with taking the time to develop his characters and such deepen his novels.

Jane Harper is the same way and then more. Her novels are full of rich, 3-dimensional characters, atmospheric plot that is almost another character itself, and beautiful dialogue. There is a mystery at the heart of each of her novels, too, but that’s just the icing on the cake instead of being the cake itself.

Harper’s novels are a joy to read. The audio is often hard for me to follow because the narrator is Australian but that makes it even more authentic, of course.

Looking forward to many more novels from this wonderful author.

The Silent Patient (3 stars):  This book was a super fast read. I know others got into it really quickly whereas I found myself being relatively apathetic the whole time until the twist came together. Having just finished Jane Harper’s new novel, I think I had even less patience for a novel like this than usual. 

If fast-paced, thrillers with a twist is your thing, you will enjoy this book. If you’re in a slump and can’t find a next novel to get you out of it, this might be a good one to go with. 

More than Words (3 stars):  If you’ve read The Light We Lost, you’re likely already familiar with Jill Santopolo’s novels. More than Words is in the same vein. 

It’s about people finding themselves, learning truths about the people they love, facing the truths about their own lives and triggered by events, choosing to finally step into the life they want to have. It’s not a badly written book, it’s just not a book I will remember for a long time. 

The characters are fine, just not deeply 3-dimensional. They won’t last with me. But I still enjoyed reading this little book.

The Fifteen Wonders of Daniel Green (4.5 stars):  What an absolute gem of a book. This story took me a while to get into, I kept reading a few pages at a time and not really connecting with it but I finally sat down today to give it a full hour and I was sucked right into the story.

This is one of my favorite kind of novels. There’s some plot but really what carries the novel is the rich, layered, 3-dimensional characters. The story is told in rotating chapters from three different characters’ points of view. And they all felt real, complicated, and wonderful to me.

There are so many sweet, quiet moments in this book. Moments of everyday life. Beautiful descriptions:

Nesssa was always like her father, all emotion and action bundled together by translucent skin. She’s a cluster of raw nerves shooting pain and joy alike straight to her heart, and it was my job to sheathe them all, to shield her.

It was long and wordy in places but by that time, I didn’t mind at all because I had grown to love these characters and wanted to spend as much time with them as possible. All the interesting crop circle plotline was icing on this beautiful cake.

Absolutely loved this one.

huge thanks to netgalley and the publisher for an advanced copy in return for an honest review.gratitudes to netgalley and the publisher for an early copy in exchange for an honest review.

The Plotters (3 stars):  This was an unusual novel. 

I have been exploring reading a wider variety of authors and I thought the plot of this Korean novel sounded really interesting so I was curious to read it.

While I didn’t really find myself getting into the story as much as I would have liked to, there were a handful of really interesting characters. One thing I’ve noticed is that this novel had a different rhythm. It was quieter, less explosive, especially for a novel about hired killers. It felt very matter of fact. Not too much dwelling on emotions/drama etc. 

I enjoyed reading it especially because it was different for me.

And there we go, not as many as usual but next week’s vacation so hopefully it will pick up. Here’s to a fantastic week.

Books I Read this Week 2019 is a year-long project for 2019. You can read more about my projects for 2019 here. I am also tracking my books in real time on Good Reads here. If you’re on Good Reads add me so I can follow you, too!

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