What I’ve been reading lately: the new and the notable.

What I’ve been reading lately: the new and the notable.

Welcome to Quick Lit, where I share short and sweet reviews of what I’ve been reading lately, and invite you to do the same.

Lately I’ve been focusing on spring’s new releases, though I also checked off a book I’ve been meaning to read for a while.

Happiness for Beginners

Happiness for Beginners

Center’s latest novel about a woman who sets out to pull herself together on a wilderness adventure is unrealistic, predictable, and compulsively readable. A fun and light read that still manages to tackle some serious topics. This would be a great airplane or beach read. Release date: March 24. More info →
The Precious One

The Precious One

This was my first de los Santos novel. I read it in two days, then dove into her back catalog, so now I can say it’s not my favorite by her. Readers who love it will appreciate its attempt at hard themes, its nods to Middlemarch, and the author’s beautiful prose. Readers who don’t like it will find the relational plots too unbelievable too swallow—and that’s saying a lot for an author whose works are typically comfortably predictable. I’m glad I read it. Release date: March 24. More info →
Savor: Living Abundantly Where You Are, as You Are

Savor: Living Abundantly Where You Are, as You Are

Author:
Niequist calls this collection her attempt at paying attention to the things that really matter, and to encourage you to do the same, with 365 daily devotions. Also included are 21 recipes (poppy seed cake, green chile strata, Thai beef salad) as a fun and tangible reminder to savor your life, where you are, as you are. Release date: March 10. More info →
The Bookseller

The Bookseller

Author:
It's Denver, 1962, and Kitty Miller is happily living the single life, co-running a struggling bookstore. But then she begins having dreams that show her an alternate reality: the life she would have had if one single moment had unfolded differently. (Think Sliding Doors.) If you thought The Life Intended's plot was farfetched, you aren't going to like this one. This felt a little gimmicky to me (and the autism thread felt especially heavy-handed), but I did appreciate the numerous literary references. Release date: March 3. More info →
The Circle

The Circle

Author:
A chilling cautionary tale about the internet, social media, and connectedness with echoes of Animal Farm. At 503 pages, the book felt a bit long-winded to me, but it nevertheless raises important and timely questions about connectedness, transparency, and the dark side of the internet. Published in October 2013, and I wonder what I would have thought if I had read it then. More info →
The Nightingale

The Nightingale

Author:
This book disappointed me, not because it was bad, but because it had the potential to be outstanding. While Hannah does a wonderful job portraying the state of occupied France in World War II, the characters felt like types. Many reviewers praise the sheer originality of the book for its portrayal of French women in WWII, but I kept thinking of Jojo Moyes's stronger novel The Girl You Left Behind. Release date: February 3. More info →

What have you been reading lately?

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