Here we are again, a new month and new books for you to explore. I hope you're excited about this month's book reviews and recommendations! This month I decided to switch to sharing books to read in the coming month.
These book recommendations all range in topic, focus, period, but what they do not lack, is a great story. Since we’re now in June and approaching summer here in the USA, I added a beach read, because who doesn’t need that?
I see books as a keepsake from a place I’ve traveled. A story that allows me to travel to this world the author has created or an actual location I can visit. Books allow me to learn a story I wouldn’t have heard otherwise. Books are powerful things!
Maybe reading can be a challenge for you, have you tried Audible? If listening is a challenge, have you tried doing a book club? Book Clubs are a great excuse to meet new people or get together with friends for the summer!
Let’s jump into the books!
Invisible Jews: Surviving the Holocaust in Poland by Eddie Bielawski
Be ready to not only transport time, but be made to feel like you’re living in Poland pre, during, and post World War II. Eddie really captures the area of Poland he is from and the places he lives during his life.
Hearing people's stories is something I’ve always been passionate about. It is difficult to understand someone's personal experience with a topic, or event. I am thankful for those who were and are Holocaust survivors, that were able to share their stories. WIthout Eddie sharing his story I would not have known his struggle of be a child in Poland in fear of his neighbors who were so readily willing to turn in his family.
The creativity his father had to go through to hide and protect his family is amazing. How a family protects, loves, and provides for each other during an unbearable time is powerful. Read this book and hear Eddie’s story of his life.
Not only does he share the conditions that he was forced to live in, but you feel the hate his neighbors and people after the way felt for them. For myself, I thought post-war people would see the error in their ways and actions and wish to change that. That was not the case.
I cannot imagine the magnitude of having to put pen to paper, go through the process of editing it, someone else editing it, and having to fight for your story to be told.
With that said, if you want to hear someone’s story and how they were able to survive the Holocaust in Poland, read this book. Eddie’s story, being a small child and having to understand you need to be quiet or you could die. Or to understand you cannot eat for every meal. This book will give you pause.
Combining historical thriller, but not a legit thriller, and a beach read, that is how I would describe the Lake House. I had read The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl, I enjoyed both of them. Adding that as a disclaimer because if you did not like either of those books, I'm not sure if you'll enjoy this book.
After finishing those two books, Goodreads kept directing me to check out this book. I kept brushing it off since I needed a little break from this genre, also might be an unpopular opinion but I didn’t love Girl on a Train. I enjoyed it, but I think it had a lot of potential to be better.
Now, The Lake House is not at all connected to the Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves movie from 2006. I made that assumption since I really enjoy the movie I figured why not check out the book.
This book will transport you to Cornwall, England. While Sadie is escaping her life as a young detective in London she is staying with her grandfather in his lakeside home. Sadie has a bit of drama and life things she needed to work out so going to the English countryside was exactly what her boss ordered.
One day, while out for a walk, she stumbles upon the old Edevane estate. Having questions about this old abandoned home, she asked her grandfather about it. This small spark of curiosity sets off events that make this book a major page-turner!
The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickelby by Charles Dickens
For this, I did watch the movie first which Charlie Hunnam did an amazing job in! If you’re a fan of his, this is pre Sons of Anarchy days, be amazed by the young mans acting skills here! If you are familiar with Charles Dickens's novels, this storytelling and focus on the treatment of the poor is a consistent theme.
Nicholas is a young man who is now head of the household due to his father's passing. He now has to care for his mother and sister in the midst of being left with nothing. He comes from an honorable family and strives to be an honorable man. The family has a rich Uncle with no family that they can seek aid from.
Now, this Uncle is not honorable, not is he someone to be trusted. Nicholas is forced to protect his sister from the Uncle and his unhonorable friends. While doing this he needs to find another way to provide for his struggling family.
It is interesting to read a book focused on a man battling these responsibilities forced on him. For me, I mainly read books that the main character is a woman. I can relate to that struggle. I can easily forget that the internal struggles I go through, a man can as well. I hope you enjoy hearing Nicholas's story that Dickens wrote in early England.
Is Everything Hanging Out Without Me? By Mindy Kaling
During this current season, I think we can relate to Mindy’s story differently. Questioning how people are spending time snd also figuring ourselves out. I will say I listen to the Audible of this, this is a great road trip listen!
It is only 4 hours and 37 minutes long. I will say I did read her second book, I wouldn’t read it if you already read this one. In case you were planning to by-pass this review and think her second book would be a good read, nah.
This is a story oh who Mindy Kailing is. She details how she survived being an Indian girl in Boston to go to a challenging school and end up on The Office. So, if you’re an Office show watcher, you’ll enjoy the tidbits she shares about the show, how she got connected, and relationships with her cast members.
Did I go walking away with a new perspective? No really. Did it make me do some self-reflection? Eh. I would classify this under a summer read. Easy to get through and well written. Since Mindy moves around throughout her journey you get to experience multiple different cities within the US!
Okay, for the ladies out there, who HASN'T read a Nicholas Sparks novel? We all know we get to travel to North Carolina and be by a beach or a quaint town where everyone knows each other and their whole life story. Charming.
The Rescue does not disappoint. I will say, it is slightly different from his other books. Mainly from the length of the book, this is probably his longest book. However, in typical Sparks fashion, tragedy strikes!
A fire-man who cannot seem to find love. Then a single mom running from a destructive relationship (sounds familiar) to ultimately break free from her tremulous relationship. these two are thrown together by him saving her life.
Oh isn't that just what everyone wants?! He is there by her side to help her recover, comfort her and be her friend.... Will they end up together?
If you're looking for other recommendations check out last month's book recommendations.
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