The Girl with the Louding Voice

The Girl with the Louding VoiceThe Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Daré
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“I want more than just a voice, I want a louding voice. I want to enter a room and people will hear me even before I open my mouth to be speaking.”

The coming of age story of Adunni, a young Nigerian girl sold into servitude. All she wants is an education. And she will stop at nothing to get it. She wants to be not just any girl, but The Girl With The Louding Voice. A girl who will be heard and respected. Narrated in broken English, we see Adunni evolve with strength and admiration. I absolutely loved her. This book is a great choice for readers looking to try authors with different cultural and ethnic backgrounds. Five stars.

The Sun Down Motel

The Sun Down MotelThe Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Winner winner chicken dinner! What a great ride. “Never judge a book by its cover.” Well, I’m so glad I did for this one. This book was a spectacular mix of ghost story and crime thriller. Very atmospheric, and very spooky. This wasn’t horror but it did send chills down my spine. And so much more than a ghost story. Told in parallel stories, 1982 and 2017, a young woman returns to the town where her aunt mysteriously disappears 35 years earlier and falls eerily into her old life. The novel then beautifully slides into a well-written murder mystery. The ending was wrapped up in a pretty little bow a little more than it had to be but still worked great. I devoured this book in a day. Five stars.

The Only Woman in the Room

The Only Woman in the RoomThe Only Woman in the Room by Marie Benedict
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“But I had stared the leaders of our enemies in the eyes and turned my ear to their voices, and I knew the terror they meant to wreak upon our world.”

The unbelievable story of Hedy Lamarr, Austrian starlet, and brilliant inventor. Who knew? I’d vaguely heard of Hedy as one of the 40s glam stars but really didn’t know anything about her life. After escaping her controlling husband in Austria, she ends up on the silver screen in America. She is admired for her beauty but is not taken seriously as an innovative inventor.

This well written historical fiction follows the younger part of her life and her contributions to the war effort. You will be rooting for her the entire way. Four stars.

To take a deeper peek into Hedy’s life, I recommend watching Bombshell: the Hedy Lamarr Story on Netflix.

Mercy House

Mercy HouseMercy House by Alena Dillon
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Catholic Church is at it again. This one was a mixed bag for me. Compelled to read this novel based on solid reviews in all of the lit journals, as well as being penned by a local author, I was destined to love it. Only I didn’t. Yes, the characters were great. The nuns were tough and spunky. The residents all had unique, interesting stories. The villainous priest was sinister. It should have all worked perfectly. But something was off. I guess it was just too ominous, too grim and threatening. It felt like falling into a well and knowing you can’t get out. Three stars.