Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Reluctant Bachelorette

The Reluctant BacheloretteThe Reluctant Bachelorette by Rachael Renee Anderson

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Taycee Emerson lives in small farming town that's struggling to stay afloat. She's lived there all her life and, despite the fact that the rest of her family has moved away, she loves living there and owns her own flower shop.

Taycee's relatively uncomplicated life gets much more interesting when her former crush moves back into town. It gets even crazier when her best friend signs her up to be on an internet dating show without her knowledge, and the said former crush gets cast as one of her "bachelors."

This book is just good, clean fun. It's cute and predictable, but I felt invested in the story and read it really quickly. It's nice to read a romance without worrying about any kind of graphic content. I needed a change in reading pace and this really did it for me. It's a non-stressful, relaxing read that I finished with a smile on my face.

(If I could change one thing though, it would definitely be the main character's name.)

Also reviewed by: I Am a Reader, Not a Writer - Blog Tour
Source: Kindle Purchase

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Magician's Assistant

The Magician's Assistant by Ann Patchett

On the library stacks: Adult fiction
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Sabine has been a magician's assistant for over twenty years. She fell hard for Parsifal the magician, even when it was clear he was gay. But she stood by him and loved him through everything, including the death of Parsifal's lover. Eventually Parsifal marries Sabine so that she will inherit everything upon his death. When he dies unexpectedly Sabine finds out that Parsifal has lied to her about his whole past and upbringing.

Sabine is shocked to find out Parsifal's real name is Guy Fetters. His mother is alive and well and lives in Nebraska along with his two sisters and two nephews. When Parsifal's mother comes to Los Angeles to visit, Sabine is confused but desperate to find out who the real Parsifal is and why he has hidden his past. To complete her emotional journey, she visits the family in Nebraska.

I'm starting to thing that Ann Patchett's endings and I do not get along. Still, I thought this was a really beautifully written novel. I was emotionally invested in the story, right up until the last 30 pages or so when it really fell apart for me. The direction Patchett took the story did not ring true to the Sabine I felt I had come to know, which really made me question everything. I have continued to mull this story over though, so it definitely had an impact on me, even if it's not as positive as I would have liked.

Also reviewed by: Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin'? ~ Your link here?
Source: Purchased

Saturday, November 17, 2012

A Discovery of Witches

A Discovery of Witches (All Souls Trilogy, #1)A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

On the library stacks: Adult Fiction
AR Reading Level: 5.7
Series: Book 1 of 3 (All Souls Trilogy)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Diana Bishop is a modern-day witch, doing work in the Bodleian Library at Oxford. She usually tries to suppress her powers because she doesn't want them to influence her work as a historian of science. But one day she uses a little magic to reach a book and a vampire spots her.

Matthew Clairmont is a 1,500 year old vampire who thinks Diana may hold the key to a secret all witches, daemons, and vampires are trying to discover. Together they try to figure it all out while trying to stay safe from dark forces that wish them harm. And, of course, they fall in love along the way.

This book is a mix of Harry Potter and Twilight for grownups. It's a large book, but a quick read. I thought Diana was a pretty bland character and I didn't really like Matthew much better. But I really loved all the sides characters--the family and friends of the duo. While I really did enjoy my time reading, it was pretty easy for me to pick apart the book when I finished it, and my book club felt the same. As such, I won't be finishing the series.

Also reviewed by: Peeking Between the Pages ~ Axe for the frozen sea ~ Book Addiction ~ Beth Fish Reads ~ Book Nut ~ Booking Mama ~ Bermudaonion's Weblog ~ Linus's Blanket ~ Capricious Reader
Source: Library

Monday, November 5, 2012

Crow Lake

Crow Lake by Mary Lawson

On the library stacks: Adult fiction
AR Reading Level: 5.5
Award: Alex Award for Adult Books for Young Adults

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This gorgeous novel is set in a small farming community in northern Canada. Kate is just 7 when her parents are killed in a car accident. Her two older brothers make it possible for the family to stay together, including raising baby Bo. Her oldest brother sacrifices his teaching career so that Kate's favorite brother Matt can go to college. But a twist of fate leaves Matt in their small town for good.

Kate tells the story of the family, alternating between past and present. She is now a successful zoologist, struggling in her romantic relationship with a fellow professor. A trip homes brings all of her feelings to the surface, especially those regarding her disappointments in Matt.

I really enjoyed this novel. It's rich and atmospheric and so well written. I loved getting into the guts of the characters--their motivations, choices, and psychology. While it's mainly a character-driven novel, the plot certainly moved along enough for me that I didn't want to put the book down. Although I didn't read it for mine, I think it would make a fantastic book club choice.

Also reviewed by: In the Pages... ~ Your link here?
Source: BookMooch