Book Reviews, Latest

August 2017 Book Review


Hello bookworms!! Grab a cup of coffee, load up your GoodReads app and cozy up as you read….

….my first book review!

I usually pick up book recommendations from friends, other blogs, magazines, and Good Reads. Let me tell you, I love a good beach read about Nantucket life. Enter Elin Hilderbrand and Nancy Thayer. While I am currently on a mission to read all their books, I did not read ANY this month. Don’t worry there will be plenty to come.

The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane
Lisa See

 “Lisa See explores the lives of a Chinese mother and her daughter who has been adopted by an American couple. Liy-yan and her family align their lives around the seasons and farming of tea. Despite Haley’s happy home life, she wonders about her origins; and Li-yan longs for her lost daughter. They both search for and find answers in the tea that has shaped their family’s destiny for generations. A powerful story about a family separated by circumstances, culture and distance, Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane paints an unforgettable portrait of a little known region and its people and celebrates the bond that connects mothers and daughters.”

A much different read than I am normally drawn to. I think it was mentioned as a top pick in a recent Real Simple magazine I read. I enjoyed this as a cultural piece, as a glimpse into a tiny corner of the world and the lives of the Akha people. A few slower points and perhaps a bit too deep into the tea industry to keep my interest throughout. A lot of great overarching themes: love, coming of age, and female empowerment; themes that transcend all cultures. While this will likely not make my top five for the year, I am glad I read it and it made me eager to explore more novels in this same vein.

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Every Fifteen Minutes
Lisa Scottoline

“Dr. Eric Parrish is the Chief of the Psychiatric Unit at Havemeyer General Hospital outside of Philadelphia. Recently separated from his wife, Caitlin, he is doing his best as a single dad to his seven-year-old daughter Hannah. But when he takes on a new patient, Eric’s entire world begins to crumble. Every Fifteen Minutes brings you into the grip of a true sociopath and shows you how, in the quest to survive such ruthlessness, every minute counts.”

The ratings on this book were all over the board, but a friend recommended it to me and I decided to give it a shot. I REALLY enjoyed this book! It was the winner this month for me. My husband thought it was just ok. It honestly kept me guessing until the last page and I felt very invested in the characters and outcome of the story. I really did not enjoy Caitlin’s character AT ALL, even at the end. Also, as a Physician Assistant it drove me crazy how the author referred to our profession as physician’s assistants. A great mystery and will definitely try another Lisa Scottoline book. Suggestions?

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When Breath Becomes Air
Paul Kalanithi

A memoir about a physician turned patient when he is diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. Although I knew the author had passed, the last third of this book was heart wrenching. What did I expect?! The author actually never had a chance to finish or edit this book so it truly reflects a work in progress. I finished the book and I am glad I did but it certainly was not my favorite read by any means. I feel really bad saying that. I have a lot of respect for him and his quest to understand life as he approached death, but it was just not my favorite book.

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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone: Illustrated
J.K Rowling

I have no idea how many times I have read this book growing up. If you know me personally, you know I have always been a total Harry Potter fanatic. I feel so connected to these stories. Obviously, this was a great read. I loved the illustrations and cannot wait to read it to Violet when she is a little older. I was also surprised to see how the novel’s dialogue was identical to the movie. They really transformed this first novel accurately to the movie. I am going to read (reread) the Chamber of Secrets: Illustrated version next. Always quick reads for me and the illustrations made it even more fun!


Taking book suggestions for October….

8 thoughts on “August 2017 Book Review

  1. I LOVE book recommendations! The first one on your list intrigues me (my name is Lisa and I’m Korean, adopted by an American family)!! The similarities end there, but I’m sure I’d still like the book!

    And 1000x yes to all things HP. My daughter is on Order of the Phoenix right now and I’m just itching for her to get through 6 & 7! I think my 3rd grade son would enjoy the illustrated version. Great picks!!

  2. Always love finding fellow readers and reading their reviews! I absolutely loved When Breath Becomes Air. I just thought he was a gifted writer, but it also resonated because I’m an oncology nurse, so I enjoyed the medicine aspect. I’m reading Jen Hatmaker’s newest book right now and am really enjoying it!

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