Well, you know what they Say, “April showers– leads to great reads even if it takes half of May to finally get around to writing the reviews.”
Well… okay then. April consisted of two chick flicks and two memoirs. I’d say I was pretty consistent. So, if either of those genres interest you, or even if they don’t, read on.
Every Thing, Every Thing: Nicola Yoon
Great storyline, but not exactly a believable delivery. 18-year old Maddy has grown up in the protectant and sanitized bubble of her own home. She is allergic to, quite frankly, everything. She spent 18 years content with this life of board games with her mom, online classes, and every book she could dream of, but then she meets Olly, the new boy next door, and falls in love. This changes her entire view on her own life as she comes to feel that living inside of a bubble is not living at all, and tries to balance the decision of living in her house for years or taking a risk in order to truly live.
As mentioned before, the storyline itself is good– very cute and easy to read. The story is told well from Maddy’s mind complete with doodles and illustrations. Maddy is an interesting character, but to me, neither her nor Olly were very natural or compelling. It felt almost like a forced version of The Fault in Our Stars, with two kids that talk in wit beyond their years, but the relationship moved even faster and at a pace that makes it seem pretty unnatural.
The Sound of Gravel: Ruth Wariner
Simply a raw, broken, and beautifully told story. This is the story of the author herself and her life as a child of polygamy. This life leads to much pain and poverty as love is limited and finances are tight. The story is littered with uncomfortable scenes, but the truth of this life is one that needs to be known and understood a little better.
Before reading this story I knew very little about polygamy, and I especially did not consider how it would affect everyone involved. Not only did this story open my eyes to a hard type of life I never invested much thought into, but it allowed me to sympathize with a story I would have never before imagined connecting to. No matter our family, religion, or background, we all relate through the common ground of pain, no matter the form this comes in. This book offered a beautiful pain told from the depths of a beautiful heart, and the stories told will stick with you long after the last page.
Me Talk Pretty One Day: David Sedaris
I once heard that if you want to hear the rawest truths in life, listen to a comedian. I have since come to believe this. I believe comedians have an interesting and unique view of most aspects of life and David Sedaris is no exception. This book was a comedic tale about different stories and chapters in his life from his time in France to his family pets, and though you will be laughing the whole time, you will also be impacted by some raw truths of reality, both good and bad. Sedaris is relatable and entertaining in his writing and extremely vulnerable in the stories he chooses to share with anyone willing to take the time to read his book.
I listened to the book as an audiobook, and I would recommend this to anyone interested in it. With live performances from his actual shows and his own twists and tones in the dialogue, I don’t think this book should be read any other way than to you by Sedaris himself.
After You: Jojo Moyes
(Warning: spoilers for those who have not yet read Me Before You)
For anyone who refused to read this book because of bitterness still held from the prequel, I feel your pain. It took me a whole year to get around to reuniting with my dear friend Lou to find out how she’s been handling the loss of Will. While I longed for the impossible return of Will throughout the whole story, and that never really goes away, Lou is such a strong and entertaining character that she alone can keep a story going, even without the love interest that most readers came to adore in the first book.
In this story, Lou is living in London and trying to live the exciting life that Will had dreamed for her. However, she is struggling to find her purpose in this new life without him, when suddenly the most unexpected of people enters the story. Even if you are still angry and Jojo Moyes, this book is worth a read to any fan of Me Before You.
Picture credit: Chelsea Sweet