Tag Archive: contemporary



The Light PirateThe Light Pirate by Lily Brooks-Dalton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Rosemary Benson’s narration gave this well-written story a deeper sense of credibility. I am so glad I got to listen to the Audible version of this book. Was it the author, Lily Brooks-Dalton, or the narrator that caused me to smell the world, feel the humidity, and stand strong in the wind blowing around me?

As tangible as the world seemed, the grief was palpable. Each stage of life has happy occurrences and endings. The book takes us through many lives and increases in ecological disasters, but we witness the good in the bad. The magic in the dull, difficult world.

The main character, Wanda, born during the hurricane in Florida that she was named after, grows up as severe weather changes take effect. She needs to survive. Her family and a good neighbor friend see her through as much as possible. Wanda grows anyway.

I feel I have made this sound very depressing. It is, in parts. But mostly shows us how we can survive if we pay attention. Not just to the warnings but to the world around us as it is adapting. I’m leaving this book behind with a promise I may read it again. It will haunt me. In a good way.

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The Messy Lives of Book PeopleThe Messy Lives of Book People by Phaedra Patrick
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a fun read. Katy Sobey (Narrator) kept the story interesting.

The thing that stands out in my memories of this read was how often, as an aspiring writer, the author captured the insecurities I have often felt.

Watching the main character, Liv Green, find her inner superhero was fun. Strength. Courage.

And another story about books. And writing. It was fun!

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The Bookshop of YesterdaysThe Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ann Marie Gideon (Narrator) kept this book real. It was an enjoyable read. No great romance to mess up the story, but there are a couple in there as the main character, Miranda, tries to figure out her life. In the tags, it is listed as a mystery, but it isn’t a murder mystery. It is more about Miranda’s questions about life.

I love this kind of book. It is lightweight enough to keep me sane, yet there is enough story to keep my interest.

And it is a book about books.

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UnshelteredUnsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve gotten behind on my reviews. But after thinking about this book, I remember a lot more than I thought I did. My first thought was how the teen daughter had so much to say about life here and elsewhere, Cuba, for example.

Then I remember the historical references and am so glad I read this book.

The author narrated it. She did an excellent job keeping the story and characters separated and believable.

I highly recommend reading this book. Since it’s been a while, I will leave you to read other reviews of the book. I still have good feelings about it and wouldn’t mind rereading it. I was able to read it through Libby, the library app.

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There ThereThere There by Tommy Orange
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

These narrators made Tommy Orange’s story come to life: Darrell Dennis, Shaun Taylor-Corbett, Alma Ceurvo, and Kyla Garcia. I can’t imagine actually reading this story. At first, and for a long time, I couldn’t figure out if it were an anthology or all one story. I did feel it gave me a glimpse of Native American life nowadays. To say the least, it isn’t pleasant what these characters, and I would assume most American Indians might grapple with. We all are a product of our forebears, and our experiences bring us physically and emotionally. The more negative past makes the present more difficult to live with. Hence this story of several characters as they get ready to meet at the Pow Wow in Oakland.

I lowered my rating because I found it confusing to know who I was listening to. I think stopping the story to say Chapter so-in-so, then a character name helps the listener know more about what is happening to whom.

Still, if going into the story if you know what I mentioned above, it might be a better more cohesive story than how I perceived it. So I still highly recommend this book, especially the audiobook.

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Remarkably Bright CreaturesRemarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

OH, I needed that! What a fun little book!

A seventy-year-old main character? Finally!

A chance to see life from the octopus’s point of view? Yes!

I was lucky to listen to this book on a Libby audiobook. The voices are fantastic!

Marin Ireland (Narrator),  Michael Urie (Narrator),

Especially octopus’s pompous voice.

I don’t want to give any of it away. Just dive in and enjoy!

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Dava Shastri's Last DayDava Shastri’s Last Day by Kirthana Ramisetti
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I spent the first half of this book wanting to throw it across the room or just quit reading. The main character was interesting, and I wanted to get more into her head. But her offspring were horrid. They were supposed to be attending to their mother’s deathbed, but all they could do was fight and be hateful.

I guess that is credit to the author to have written such strong characters. Soneela Nankani (Narrator) was fun to listen to, her acting chops showing regardless of which person she was playing.

In the end, I found I liked the book and was happy to read it. And redeeming of beings took place.

I learned about this book on Good Morning America one day. At first, I couldn’t see how it even got featured. But soon, I could see a lot of lessons to be learned with a deeper reading, like in a book club. It was nice to read about a strong woman who obtained everything in the end. But that was at the beginning of the book. It is very worth the read!

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Improbable Magic for Cynical WitchesImprobable Magic for Cynical Witches by Kate Scelsa
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I don’t know who recommended this, but it was an insightful read. Kate uses Tarot Major Arcana to tell a piece of a teen’s confusing life. I love how we learn the cards as a story unto themselves and how it applies to Elenor’s past.

Kate Sclesa is a young adult novel, and the romances cause angst. But I loved climbing into Elenor’s thoughts and seeing how she caused her worries to grow.

Stacey Glemboski (Narrator) brought this Audible version alive with her voice acting.

Quite an enjoyable and inspiring read.

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Ape HouseApe House by Sara Gruen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a fun book. I was able to pick it up on Libby as an audiobook. The story was great. Paul Boehmer (Narrator) was not the best. The only difference in characters was the Russian prostitute. The other women sounded foolish. All the men sounded the same. That caused me, the listener, to miss who was talking.

I enjoyed the bits about the monkeys and thinking about how much we could learn from other species if we could meet with some language. I thought the author showed the mentality of both humans and apes.

If you get the chance, I recommend this read. I think the psychology and philosophies brought up are interesting to ponder.

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On RotationOn Rotation by Shirlene Obuobi
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Who recommended this to me? Thank you, whoever you are. I am usually not into romance novels, but I loved this all the way through! However, recommended, I do remember looking it up and finding it on Libby.

Mela Lee (Narrator) told the story with believable passion.

I’m crazy about medical stories; a Grey’s Anatomy fan from the beginning, Dr. Kildare, started me out when I was a child. So this story pulled me right in. That it included a younger generation of adults and another culture made it even more engaging.

I may come back to reread this when I need a light distraction again.

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