Welcome to Quick Lit, where we share short and sweet book reviews of what we’ve been reading lately.
This month I’ve been reading so many advance review copies for the Summer Reading Guide (and the time to begin sharing those is not terribly far away!).
I’ve also been in the car a ton: I’m not overly fond of road trips, but I definitely enjoyed listening to two audiobooks in quick succession last week: one en route to my destination, and one on the way home.
I so enjoyed revisiting this old favorite for Book Club last month, because it was our flight selection to accompany the newer release Harry's Trees. Like all the women in her family, Claire Waverly possesses a unique magic: she uses edible flowers to prepare foods that affect the eater in “curious ways.” Years ago, Claire’s sister fled town—and her Waverly gift—but she discovers her own sort of magic when she returns. What to say about this book? The romance is cheesy, the magic is impossible, but put them together and it sings. A few love scenes are a little racy (ahem). If you’re not down with supernatural food or a magical apple tree, skip this one—but you should know how many readers call this “a wonderful surprise.” More info →
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this for the first time about ten years ago, and have been meaning to revisit it. When my friend Ariel told me the audio version was terrific—and read by the author—I decided to re-read in audio format. Once again, I found it to be an exceptional book for book lovers and a must-read for writers, and I'm saying that as someone who has read a grand total of two books by King. (The other is 11/22/63.) I thoroughly enjoyed the story of his path to publication and his personal writing process (although now I'm sure I never, ever want to read Carrie.) I especially enjoyed the anecdotes he shared about his marriage and struggle with substance abuse. More info →
I've been looking forward to this new release from the author of The Hate U Give, and when I saw that Bahni Turpin narrates, I knew I wanted to listen—she's one of my very favorites, and my audiobook queue is full of her titles. This audiobook made the miles fly by: I was engrossed in the story of 15-year-old Brianna, who is confident in her dreams—and has a chance of making them come true—but first has to navigate a whole slew of pitfalls, both the ones forced upon her and the ones of her own making. If you appreciated THUG, add this to your TBR immediately. More info →
You may know Santopolo from her big 2017 bestseller The Light We Lost. I enjoyed this one a lot more. It's about Nina Gregory, hotel heiress and campaign strategist, and how her life falls apart after her father dies—due to her grief, and secrets revealed in the wake of her loss. I found this to be predictable but pleasant; the romance plot took center stage, but I found the strong supporting female characters to be more interesting. The campaign elements reminded me of Parenthood (when Kristina and Amber work on a political campaign) and The West Wing, which was fun. Heads up for some racy scenes. And also: am I the only one who is reading a ton of contemporary fiction featuring a "Nina" as protagonist? More info →
I loved the original book The Confidence Code, aimed at grown-ups, and was delighted to stumble upon this new edition for the younger set at my local bookstore. The authors do an excellent job of adapting the content for tweens and young teens, addressing topics that matter to women no matter their age, like getting comfortable with risk-taking, learning how to squelch negative thought patterns, and growing confidence to take on challenges involving sports, school, ambitions, and personal relationships. More info →
What have you been reading lately? Tell us all about it in comments or share a link in the comments to your post on what you’ve been reading lately!
P.S. Because I know you want to know: that top photo is from Off Square Books in Oxford, Mississippi. I highly recommend a visit.