Some things I've read lately
There is a shortage of fiction for characters between the ages of 20-25. The post-college, early-adult years are vastly underrepresented, which is sad, because it can be such a pivotal point in life. Stein explores this genre in The Fallback Plan, and I wish more authors would follow suit.
Esther has returned home to her parents house after college, and she is trying to figure out what to do with the rest of her life. Like so many of us at that age, she makes some less-than-stellar decisions. It is pretty clear that Esther has some depression issues and her listless attitude was frustrating at times.
The plot thickens when Esther begins babysitting for a local family. It quickly becomes obvious that Amy, Nate, and little May are dealing with issues far heavier than Esther's. Some scenes were heartbreaking; at other times I wanted to shake all the main characters and tell them to grow the heck up already. Life is not always the way we expect, but we deal with it. I think by the end of the book, Esther may finally be ready to face her life, wherever it may lead.
The Fallback Plan is a quick read, not completely enthralling, but a welcome addition to a very lacking representation in fiction.
**Copy received from the publisher via NetGalley. The Fallback Plan is available now.
I read How to Eat a Cupcake way back during our beach trip last September. I really, really liked this book and read it in just a day or two. It is the story of two old friends, Annie and Julia, who grew up in the same house but came from two very different worlds. The two fell out of touch after a major fight as teenagers and moved in opposite directions in their young adult lives. Circumstances bring the two back together some ten years later, when businesswoman Julia convinces Annie to partner up to open a cupcake shop, where they will sell Annie's culinary creations.
From the description, this sounds like good old-fashioned chick-lit, and that is not far from the truth. Personally, I love a light and fun chick-lit story every once in awhile, and How to Eat a Cupcake has enough mystery and plot to keep it interesting and entertaining. I especially came to love Annie, and I loved seeing her develop a bit of confidence throughout the book. She's definitely the type of character I would like to be friends with...plus, her cupcake creations leave me drooling!
How to Eat a Cupcake will be available in March, and I definitely recommend grabbing it up for your next beach vacation.
**Copy received from the publisher via NetGalley.
I love a good mystery and I love the political world, so this book should have been right up my alley. Unfortunately, it fell a bit flat for me. The plot was a good one in theory, and I didn't really figure out the mystery until the end (I hate when I can identify the killer from the first few chapters), so it did have some good points. There were too many characters introduced too quickly, and I never felt a connection to any of them.
Still, the book has pretty good reviews on Goodreads and Amazon, so maybe it's just me?
**Copy received from the publisher via NetGalley. A Crack in Everything is available now.
I was excited to start on this book when I received it, and not just because it is set in that college time period I was just complaining we don't see often enough. The description pulled me in: Leigh is a cancer survivor, trying desperately to get on with her life, when she "discovers what it actually means to stand on her own and learns that love can be found in unexpected but delightful places". Sounds fun, right?
Once I started reading, I was surprised to find that the characters are devout Mormons and their religion plays a substantial role in the story. This doesn't bother me--I like when characters actually acknowledge religion, instead of leaving it out entirely as so many books do, to be more generally appealing, I guess. I am not Mormon (obviously?), so I missed some of the references and had to stop and piece the meaning together in some instances, but I didn't feel like it subtracted from the plot at all.
The first time I started this book, I lost interest and put it down. I picked it up again a couple of weeks later and ended up really liking most of it. Despite the fact that it wasn't what I originally expected, The Next Door Boys is an enjoyable story with moral characters and storylines that can sometimes be hard to find in modern young-adult fiction.
**Copy received from the publisher via NetGalley. The Next Door Boys is available now.
Have you read anything good lately??