No Spoiler Book Review
This book was the Goodreads Choice Winner for 2019 Memoirs. While I have been reading more memoirs, I don’t typically watch reality TV, so I didn’t know who Jonathan Van Ness was. I didn’t even know that they had rebooted Queer Eye! I was looking for something light and funny and this seemed to fit the bill. Plus it was available on audio from my library, score!
What I love about this book is that Jonathan Van Ness (JVN) is so positive! This book is crammed full of inspirational and body positivity quotes. I love how JVN is unapologetically original and completely himself. If you are looking for a positivity boost, this is for you!
No Spoiler Book Review
I never really knew a lot about Greek Mythology. I like the stories, but I always feel bogged down by the details and those impossible Greek names. I love pondering the religious aspect of Greek mythology, how all the Gods had different jobs and were tangible forces in the world. Their religion was so colorful, so awe and fear inspiring. Just don’t ask me to tell you which God had which job…
What I like about Circe is that it takes a handful of Greek myths and connects them through one central character. You see everything from the point of view of one of the lesser goddesses. You learn about Prometheus, the River Styx, Helios, and the Trojan Horse from someone who was there at the time. It makes the stories more understandable and approachable. It’s not a collection of fairy tales, it is one story with a relatable main character.
Don’t get me wrong! I love World War II Historical Fiction! It’s just, there is so much more to history than WWII. History starts one second ago, and goes all the way back. Everywhere. Have you ever wondered what life was like in Japan, in the 1600s? How about Russia, in the 1920s? With historical fiction you can go just about anywhere at any time.
I compiled this list with the help of some librarians and book bloggers on Twitter. All of these titles are rated at least four stars on Goodreads and most of them have hundreds-of-thousands of reviews. About half of these books were published within the last few years and the other half are considered to be classics. All of them are readily available for check-out or purchase.
These books make varying attempts to be historically accurate. The Giver of Stars is loosely based on true events and will make you feel like you are living in depression era Kentucky. The Underground Railroad features a LITERAL underground railroad. The author may have taken some artistic liberties with that, but the result is amazing! All of these books will transport you to another time and place with their own unique style.
No Spoiler Book Review
Release date: June 23, 2020
The Girl from Widow Hills is a “Baby Jessica” story. The details are a little different, there is an underground drainage system instead of a well and there is sleepwalking involved, but you get the gist. Arden/Olivia is six years old when she sleepwalks into an open grate on a stormy night and is lost for days in the drainage system. She unwillingly becomes a media darling and symbol of hope for the nation when she is miraculously rescued. The Girl from Widow Hills begins twenty years later.
I was lucky enough to receive an advance reader’s copy of this book and I was excited to get approved. I love the concept, who doesn’t love a good rescue story? Plus, anything about sleepwalking is so interesting!
New Release Books
After wading through hundreds of upcoming titles, I have narrowed the list of May New Release Books to these seven exciting titles. I flipped through book review catalogs, book blogs and library chat forums to ensure that I found the most interesting and original new books. I try to include a variety of Fiction, Non-Fiction and even Young Adult books. I exclude sequels and anything that will not have broad appeal.
Please note, publication dates are shifting due to the Coronavirus epidemic. I verified the publication dates on multiple sources, however they may still change. Thank you for your understanding, if some of these become inaccurate.
Plus Block Scheduling Tips
Well, here we are! It’s April 2020 and most of the country has been working from home for a month. If you have small kids at home you are learning how difficult it is to juggle, work, zoom meetings, meals, showers, nap-time, homeschooling and every other work and household crisis. I really hope that you have an understanding boss and a helpful partner, because this is a lot.
I started working from home part-time when my oldest daughter was three. I wanted to be able to spend more time with my daughter while she was little. My significant other is a business owner with a demanding schedule, so running the household mostly falls to me. I was lucky enough to be able to step into a part-time, work from home schedule, which allowed me to focus on my family more. It was the right choice for me and my family.
A lot of people are discovering their library’s online collection for the first time and are still getting used to the process. Most libraries will have all of the newest and most popular books purchased, but there is going to be a wait list. So, while you are waiting for, Where the Crawdads Sing, and The Splendid and the Vile, consider reading something you may have missed a few years ago.
Follow this link if you have questions about accessing your library’s online collection, read the e-book and e-audiobook section.
The following books were published at least two years ago and are available for check-out in all of the library systems that I checked. I cannot promise what may be available to you, but you should have a pretty good chance at getting most of these books right away!
No Spoiler Book Review
This book feels impossible to review. I always feel like, the better the book, the harder it is to review, and this was a great book! I am going to attempt a review, but you should just skip this trashy blog post and read the book!
There are hundreds of books that revolve around doors to other worlds. Ten Thousand Doors of January is one of the best that I have read, it’s so creative and well written. Every door that is opened in this book leads someplace completely new, with unique lands, interesting people and terrifying, sometimes magical creatures. The writing is so immersive that you will feel like you can open a door to “The Written” and purchase a blessing. Or build a boat on a mountaintop and sail into an ocean. Ten Thousand Doors of January is a magical new take on an old concept.
The Coronavirus is creating a lot of stress and anxiety for kids and teens right now. As parents we like to think that our kids have nothing to worry about, but it’s simply not true. No matter how much we try to shelter our kids from the hard news of the world, they still know. My oldest is only six and she is absolutely worried and being affected by what is happening. A Twitter friend asked me to suggest some gentle reads for teens. After reaching out to other librarians and bloggers, I have narrowed the suggestions to the following funny, happy, or cozy books and series, to help young readers relax.