Kathy's Picks
9781250790798

The Oppenheimer triplets and their dysfunctional family are at the center of this excellent work of literary fiction. Each so fiercely independent that it's hard to reconcile that they're SIBLINGS, let alone triplets. Our story begins with four embryos, three implanted, one left cryogenically frozen. With her triplets leaving for college, and her marriage on the rocks, Johanna decides to hire a surrogate and bring the last child forward. Perhaps this Latecomer can salvage her damaged family.

9781250833662

I really enjoyed this meaty gothic fantasy. It's richly detailed, atmospheric, and interesting. It hearkens back to the penny dreadfuls of olde. I was both excited and disheartened to learn it is the first of a trilogy. Excited because it is GOOD. Disheartened because it's LLLONG. I'm afraid some readers might too-easily put it down and not return to it. The pace drags a bit, here and there, but ultimately it's a story I keep returning to in my mind.

9780593359235

What a well-crafted, slow-reveal, CREEEEEPFEST! Every 7 years, 14 people are 'released' into the AMAZEMENT park. None emerge. Contestants aren't told what to expect....just to HIDE. Two people will be eliminated each day. Wait, disqualified? Or, ELIMINATED?? You'll enjoy piecing things together. Mac suffers childhood trauma at the hands of her murderous father. Her lifelong ability to HIDE, may be the one thing that sees her through this nightmare. COME OUT, COME OUT WHEREVER YOU ARE....

9781982173401

I enjoyed this romantic adventure! How the entire story didn't come to a screeching halt with the first disaster, is something I'll grapple with ANOTHER time. For now, I'll unwind, and simply ENJOY this outdoorsy escape. It's a little The Old West, a little bit Escape Room, and a whole lot of City Slickers. (I just dated myself.) What we need now, is LOVE...sweet LOVE. This book delivers. Plus a bit of intrigue, horses, betrayal, and Butch Cassidy. I give it 4/5 chili peppers.

9781250819345

I listened to the audio version of this book, (via Libro.FM). It was highly engaging and entertaining. The print edition of the book has drawings to accompany the story. I was pleased to realize the author was so adept at conveying the drawings that I very much saw the same pictures in my head. OMG...when Teddy draws himself and Mallory at the table....and 'HER' underneath....between their feet..... *SHUDDER!!!!!*

9780593310526

Tae Keller comes along every few years and writes a book that speaks to my SOUL! This is a masterful book of childhood friendships, trust, betrayal, Queen Bees, and the devastating ways girls "subtly" bully...and yea, a bit about aliens too. This book could literally save a life, provide succor to someone currently dealing with complex middle school female relationships, or an adult nursing old wounds. I can't recommend it enough. Keller is a FABULOUS storyteller. I smell another Newbery award!

9780593321447

Fans of St. John Mandel will recognize a character or two from her latest novel. It's a wonderfully intertwining travel through time. Are we all existing in a simulation, or is time travel possible? A 'glitch in the matrix' holds all the answers as well as the questions. I enjoyed this departure from The Glass Hotel.....or is it?

9781982182700

Definitely a book for fans of Dan Simmon's The Terror, this book is eerie and atmospheric...a slow eerie burn. I appreciated the fortitude of the female protagonist who disguises her sex to sneak aboard a ship bound for the Antarctic. It was an expedition her brothers dreamt of before their lives were cut short in the Great War. WHAT is pursuing them? WHO is whispering in their ears calling them to walk into the unknown? What happened to the German encampment? Excellent historical fiction!

9781982153250

A smartly-written tale of rekindling a childhood relationship. Time creates distance between memory and the truth. With two wildly unreliable narrators, readers are kept on their toes. As each woman retells the origin and life of their friendship, they paint themselves as either the innocent or the victim. Circling this toxic connection is the death of a girl from their childhood...and another body discovered at the bottom of the cliffs. Atmospheric and realistic...I was thoroughly engaged!

9781538711514

If Steinbeck was the voice of the Great Depression and Kerouac the voice of the 60s…then Noah Hawley is WITHOUT A DOUBT the voice of this 'post truth' era! Incredible prose, mind-boggling reality checks, and whiplash pace will keep readers on edge and _unsettled_, from 1st page to last. Some names are changed, (not because they're innocent) but you'll know them by their acts. This is a book to GULP breathlessly, then reread at leisure, for meaningful absorption. I'm in awe. Step aside Ayn Rand!

9780063204157

I read a review of Remarkably Bright Creatures that sang it's praises, "even if it was a bit improbable." In a world where the worst improbabilities seem to occur with ever-increasing frequency, it was supremely refreshing to read this heartfelt, hope-filled, 'bit of improbability.' It left me walking a little lighter, my heart a little less burdened. I loved it beyond reason. It was the sweetest book I've read in ages. Kudos to Van Pelt for this sparkling debut!

9780593300237

I’m such a huge fan of Vuong’s writing. He’s so raw, honest, heartbreaking, and talented. This book of poetry (written after the death of his mother) eviscerates! From ‘Amazon History of a Former Nail Salon Worker’ …to the last page…I was a puddle. “I used to cry in a genre no one read.”

9781250803351

This was a fully immersive, young adult romance that takes readers on a cultural deep-dive....with DRAGONS where bulls (and bullfighting) would have been. You'll taste and smell Hispalia. You'll see the rich colors and hear music. With excellent character development, readers will finish the last page still itching for more Zarela and Alberto. Guaranteed.

9780399592553

Classic Brene Brown! I love her way of distilling emotions to their singular key components. Her tenacious research and undeniable gift of gab make her the ultimate 'book therapist'. Colorful illustrations and charts make this iteration a collector's item. YAY BRENE!

9780593185346

A coming of age story with an 11 year old black girl at the center, this book took me back to childhood!! Life, LIVES, and families are complicated messy things. KB has a limited understanding of the events surrounding her, but her optimism is infectious. She tackles some heavy heavy circumstances, but she's never far from the belief that a smile, an explanation, or a simple phone call won't fix everything. The writing is excellent; deserving of every accolade.

9780593419335

Such a sweet gentle tale of pen pals, born of a love of food and a great recipe. I was so enthralled and touched by the simplicity and beauty of the every-day-life displayed within the pages of this book. Keep a box of tissues handy. I was listening to the audio version while walking laps at the YMCA and CERTAINLY turned heads when I suddenly burst into tears!

9781250200617

I enjoyed this tale of an Irish coroner who can hear the dead. Time is of the essence. They can't stay for long, but when they know Jeanie is waiting to care for them, the dead hang around long enough to pass on their final words and wishes. Jeanie seems to put herself, her wishes, her desires, her dreams on hold, until her father upends the plans and forces her to consider what it is that SHE wants.

9781250268198

In the year 2030 for the first time in recorded history, there will be more grandparents than grandchildren. Global economies will shift. Can America retain her place at the top. What happens when China or Africa out-spends/out-produces/out-shines(?) the United States? With declining birthrates in America...a major shift may be in the wind. I'll be on tenterhooks waiting out the next 8 years.

9780593230572

This book is very thought-provoking. One cannot argue with many of the books assertions, but perhaps with a few of its suggested solutions. I agree SOMETHING must be done to right the wrongs of the past. Can you put a dollar amount on this particular injustice? Where does it end? HOWEVER, just because _I_ don't have the answers doesn't mean we shouldn't (ALL of us) be asking the questions. Ignore the detractors and read this book for yourself. It is a worth every minute of time.

9781250274250

I enjoyed the many components of this story. It was engaging and entertaining. It became a cautionary tale with a protagonist who thoroughly surprised me. Kudos to the books that keep us thinking about them, long after the last sentence is read.

9781951274979

The thyroid is a TRICKY little organ. If yours is on the fritz (as mine is, and the purpose for me reading further on the subject) have fun making the connection between some (perhaps) LIFELONG symptoms and your thyroid function. This is a very informative book. Well-worth reading for better understanding of the body and its myriad of interconnected functions.

9780593331439

What an excellent work of historical fiction about one of the most hated villains in history; John Wilkes Booth. While little Johnny doesn't feature too heavily in this book, the deep-dive into his family (parents and siblings) and the collateral damage resulting from his actions, are keenly explored. Literally the ONLY thing I found distracting was the TENSE used by the author when writing this book. It's somewhat jarring to read a piece of historical fiction in PRESENT TENSE.

9781982177270

A house with a dark history, a heavily pregnant woman, her wandering playwriter husband, a country town that's less than inviting. Each component an intriguing addition to this often-eery, fast-paced book. There are a lot of people keeping a lot of secrets, and a protagonist who isn't entirely reliable. Have fun piecing it all together!

9780778311799

A mother picks her son up from prison. His time has been served. Follow them as they transition back into everyday life. The mother of his victim will never recover. No one will. Not fully. Nor, should they be expected to. The story takes many twists and turns. Who is stalking Thea with ominous warnings to keep her son from remembering "too much" about the night he killed his girlfriend in a drug-filled delirium?

9781641293433

Such a strange, eerie tale! From beginning to end, I'm not 100% sure what I was reading. It both intrigued and frustrated me. The premise and cover ALONE, made me pick it up and read it. I'd do it again, too. Even if I was a bit disappointed with the execution.