Friday, July 15, 2011

Books I read this week!

I always have friends asking me for book recommendations, so I thought I would share with you the books that I read this week.

I finished this while traveling this weekend: These Things Hidden by Heather Gudenkauf

I had never read anything by this author before, but I liked the cover and premise when it came up on my Nook homepage. I had just finished reading After by Amy Efaw, which is topically very similar. Both books are about teenage mothers who abandon their babies. This book was incredibly creepy, but very, very good. It was told from the points of view of four different women, which was unique and unexpected. Having just read a book similar to this, I got a little weak-stomached at times, but all-in-all it was an outstanding, quick read!

Then, I read this: Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah

I have read a million Kristin Hannah books, but for some reason hadn't read her most popular one! It was very typical women's lit: two childhood best friends from opposite sides of the tracks, aspiring to make it big in journalism, told with tons of references to '70s-'90s pop culture and music. I loved the storyline and connected with both of the main characters. I wouldn't call this book thrilling or exciting by any means, but Kristin Hannah always delivers a good story that tugs at your heart. My favorite Kristin Hannah book is still True Colors, so if you haven't read anything by her, that's a great one to start with.

I just finished this this morning: The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon

Wow. I have never read a book like this before. It centers on the love story between a mentally handicapped woman and a deaf-mute man in a 1960s mental institution. This author explains tons of the research that she did on such institutions, and it is harrowing to believe that the awful things done to these residents happened in real life, too. This book was so good: it followed this couple, who eventually get separated, and the woman's daughter over the course of 50 years. I love how Rachel Simon wove the characters, both main and secondary, together through their stories, letters, and anecdotes. I haven't read Riding the Bus with my Sister, which is a memoir that this author penned about life with her mentally disabled sister, but I will definitely be reading it soon!

All good books! It was a good week for reading. Beautiful Girl was definitely the best and most unique book out of the bunch, and something different for summer.

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