Category Archives: book reviews

Meant to Be

Meant to Be

Meant to Be by Emily Giffin is a romance novel centered around a fictional Kennedy-esque family.

While enjoyable, I often found the story to be bland, the characters shallow, and overall less than what I expect from Emily Giffin.

Touching on a plethora of issues—domestic abuse, dead parents, the pressures of being from a famous family and dealing with the paparazzi—Meant to Be fails to connect on an emotional level. Throughout the novel, our narrators Cate and Joe are telling instead of showing us the story. This distance makes it fairly emotionless.

Standard rom-com plot format. Some backstory, a meet-cute, the dating period, “the event” that separates our couple, the subsequent reconnecting, and finishing off with a happy ending.

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Thanks to Netgalley.com and Ballantine Books for an advance copy. All opinions are my own.

Fevered Star

Fevered Star by Rebecca Roanhorse is the second book in the series Between Earth and Sky. The sequel to Black Sun, this novel will not disappoint fans of the first.

A wild fantasy series, complete with mysticism, magic, intrigue, romance, and family feuds. Fevered Star returns to The Merdian in the aftermath of events of the first novel. On the surface, it seems a classic case of good versus evil, light versus dark. But who is the good and who is the evil? With horrendous deeds on both sides, and a history of blood, war, and persecution, no one is blameless.

Will the sun rise over Tova again? Or will the darkness take hold and eclipse the sun eternally? Similar to the first book, this one does not give us a final ending. We see the resolution of some matters, but there is so much more of the story to be told.

I am dying to know if this is going to be a trilogy or a longer series. There’s certainly enough world-building and characters that I could see this extending for some time.

If you enjoy high fantasy and are looking for something new, and unique, I highly recommend starting with Black Sun, and then reading Fevered Star when it comes out later this year.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Thanks to Netgalley.com and Simon and Schuster for an advance copy. All opinions are my own.

Daisy Jones Book Cover

Daisy Jones and the Six

People like this book. People LOVE this book. O.M.G. I do not understand why.

Daisy Jones and the Six, by Taylor Jenkins Reid, uses a rock documentary narrative device. Everything is told as though from transcripts of the documentary interviews. I listened to the audiobook, and while I didn’t enjoy the format, it’s a neat idea.

I don’t like books with too many points of view unless there’s a really clear need. Game of Thrones, for example, needs this to tell us the events happening simultaneously across Westeros and Essos. And there is a LOT happening in GoT, unlike in Daisy Jones, where for the most part, there’s not much happening.

Additionally, I found it hard to follow, despite different voice actors for each character. Most characters seemed shallow and poorly developed. I didn’t care what happened to them or how they were feeling. There were too many minor characters, with little influence on the overall story.

It’s a typical rock ‘n roll story of sex, drugs, and alcohol. Most people can see the crash and burn coming from miles away.

It’s rare for me to feel this strongly—and this negative—about a book. This is the most hyped, overrated book since The Midnight Library. I do not recommend this book or understand the appeal at all.

Rating: 2 out of 5.

The Night Shift

The Night Shift by Alex Finlay is a fast-paced, adventurous murder mystery. There are a lot of characters in this novel. So many that I almost felt I like I needed to take notes to keep track of everyone!

With many interesting characters, and several plot twists to keep readers guessing, The Night Shift is highly entertaining. The novel follows multiple people, each on their own journey to discover the killer.

Who will be the one to solve the crime? Is there only one killer or does this new murder mean a new killer is in town? As our characters try to answer this question, we learn about who they are, and how they came to be involved. Each of our main characters is invested in finding the murderer, each for their own, very different, reasons.

At first, I wasn’t sure I would enjoy this novel. In the first chapter, something about the writing style bothered me. I also generally don’t like books with so many characters, it’s so much work to keep them all straight in my head. However, I was soon hooked and needed to solve the murder myself. Any issues with the writing style and numerous characters were quickly forgotten, and I finished the book within a few days and as many sittings.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press/Minotaur Books for an advance copy. All opinions in this review are my own.