Book Reviews

Klara and the Sun

Klara and the SunKlara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

“Until recently, I didn’t think that humans could choose loneliness. That there were sometimes forces more powerful than the wish to avoid loneliness.”
― Kazuo Ishiguro

This was a sweet story. Too sweet. Also underwhelming, childish, and lacking in originality. Such a great premise, and it totally misses the mark. Many themes are introduced and superficially explored. There is no deep-dive or fleshing out of human nature. It’s actually quite insulting. Seriously, was this book for adults? There are no great insights, ideas, or revelations. I waited for brilliance. I read reviews that said this novel meandered dangerously to the dark side. Ha. I tried to see the beauty in its simplicity. All I got was annoyed. But all was not lost, two stars for Klara’s kindness, sweet nature, and humanity (see the joke here). Just too twee for my tastes.

Beach Read

Beach ReadBeach Read by Emily Henry
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“And that was the moment I realized: when the world felt dark and scary, love could whisk you off to go dancing; laughter could take some of the pain away; beauty could punch holes in your fear. I decided then that my life would be full of all three.” – Emily Henry

Perfect book for this time of year. Light, steamy, fun, and all of that other good stuff, yet extremely heartfelt as well. I was particularly moved by January’s search to accept, understand, and forgive her father after his death. This is a MUST READ if you’re looking for a break from the heavy stuff. Five stars.

Mexican Gothic

Mexican GothicMexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Old would have been an inaccurate word to describe him. He was ancient, his face gouged with wrinkles, a few sparse hairs stubbornly attached to his skull. He was very pale too, like an underground creature. A slug, perhaps. His veins contrasted with his pallor, thin, spidery lines of purple and blue.”

WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT? Supernatural gothic horror I guess. The book starts as a classic creepy haunted house tale with all the eerie ominous vibes that I love. The evil decaying house is filled with a creepy evil family with an awesomely horrific back story. Halfway through, the story takes a supernatural turn which takes you on an action-packed thrill ride with lots of super grotesque imagery. You will also love to hate Noemi, the immature spoiled brat at the center of the story. And Howard, the patriarch of High Place will make your skin crawl. This book is lots of fun. I can’t even… Recommended for lovers of the hideous, grotesque, and macabre. 4.5 stars.

The Death of Vivek Oji

The Death of Vivek OjiThe Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeke Emezi
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“They were keeping me alive in the sweetest way they knew how, you see.”

Exceptional. This book took my breath away. Exquisitely written and overwhelming heartfelt. This is the story of a young persons search for sexuality, identity and acceptance. It’s about complicated relationships between friends and family. I was especially touched by struggle of Vivek’s mother and her quest to find out what really happened to her son and her final act to give his life meaning. Five stars.