May 2022–Part Two

Thank you for joining me here!   I hope you enjoy this series and I’d love to hear from you about what you are reading these days.

Book #1:

Matrix by Lauren Groff (Length: 268 pages).  This interesting novel is set in 1153 in an abbey of all places, and it’s a fantastic read! A gem of a novel based on the true life of Marie, a half-sister of Eleanor of Aquitaine who is banished to an abbey, and who transforms and later leads that abbey from a group of starving nuns at the mercy of nature the surrounding community to the wealthiest abbey in all of England. The writing is lyrical and is hard to put down. It reminds me of Ken Follett’s The Pillars of the Earth but with a cast of solely female characters. It’s a delight to read what a group of only women can achieve. I love this book and will always remember the plot and characters.

Book #2:

The Golden Couple by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen (Length: 329 pages).  Psychological thrillers are one of my favorite genres but they’re often a disappointment lately. This is a good one! The premise is that Avery, a discredited therapist with unorthodox methods meets with a couple, Matthew and Marissa Bishop who come to her because the wife has cheated with an unknown man. The character development is good (and surprising as I ended up liking a character I initially disliked), there a few red herrings (which are realistic) so I didn’t see the twist coming, which I prefer. Good beach/travel read because you don’t have to think too hard but you won’t get too annoyed with how the characters behave here.

Book #3:

Dear Bob and Sue Season 2 by Matt and Karen Smith (Length: 374 pages).  Yay! Another installment of this wonderful travelogue series. I listened to this one and it’s a perfect audiobook for a commute as you can easily pick up the thread of the narration each time you pick up the book. This book covers more visits to national and state parks and monuments. I especially enjoyed hearing about the visits to Zion, Alaska and to Glacier National Park. Matt’s crankiness is a bit annoying in the audio-version, I think because you are hearing a narrator “perform” the crankiness but the substance is great as usual. Again, if you enjoy the nitty-gritty details of where they stayed, ate, and what they packed, you’ll enjoy this too. On to book #4, and the last one they’ve written thus far . . . I’m holding off because I know I’ll want to savor it.

Book #4:

The Innocents by Michael Crummey (Length: 293 pages).  Well, this is an interesting novel. It is written by a Canadian author and was given to me by my Canadian bestie so I have some questions for her as to why she gave it to me. 😉 It’s best explained (in my opinion) as Into the Wild crossed with Flowers in the Attic if that gives you a clue. Set in Newfoundland in the 19th century, a pair of brother and sister orphans are left to survive brutal weather, constant work of fishing, hunting and subsistence farming to stay barely alive. The writing is gorgeous, the characters are memorable and the plot is absolutely propulsive but boy, is the whole thing a bit strange. Check it out if you dare.


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