Anyway, here's what I read and what I thought about it, in two parts. I'll post about the first four books today and the last four on Thursday. None of these books are really new, but that just means each will be a little cheaper if you want to pick one up yourself.
(P.S. Nate read Game of Thrones over the course of the week, for which I teased him mercilessly.)
This one is a heavy memoir about a parent's relationship to his son's addiction to crystal meth. I think both author father and addict son were on Oprah once, so maybe you've heard of it.
Sometimes people ask me about why I haven't had kids yet. The answer is in this book, to some extent. Because having a child is TERRIFYING. You never know what might happen. You can do everything right (or as right as possible). You can try your best. Your kid may still become a meth addict. Anyway, like I said, this book is heavy. A little dense, and not for everyone, but I thought it was very smart, and very worth reading.
This was the best thing I read all week, by far. It's historical fiction about a small town in 17th Century England (1665-1666) that is beset by plague.
Over the course of one year, more than half the population dies. The novel is narrated by a housemaid who survives.
It's incredible. Really. Totally engaging. Totally disturbing. In some ways, hard to read (because bad thing after bad thing happens, with almost no relief), but I couldn't put it down.
By the author of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, this book is about a "new sisterhood" of three eighth-grade girls.
It's not an adult book, and it's not great literature, but I enjoyed it. The struggles each girl faces are fairly predictable, but then again, I'm in my 30s. The girls in the story are familiar, and that's a good thing in YA literature.
If you have a younger teen daughter, I'd recommend this to her. (It also contains lots of interesting facts about willow trees. Bonus.)
Not terrible, but the weakest thing I read all week. It's about the relationship between two (predictably different) sisters. One sleeps with the others husband. Drama ensues. But you know how it is... relationships are complicated. There's family history to consider. Sisterhood. Blah blah blah.
The thing that bothered me most was the book's obsessive weight chatter. Body type was regularly noted as if it was important to the plot. At one point, the narrator describes a woman (who weighs 160lbs, FYI - Gabriele actually tells you that) giving her a "fleshy" hug. Eesh. Such things ruined an otherwise average book.
Okay, so there's the first four books down. Like I said, I'll tell you about the last four shortly. Happy reading.