Hello lovelies and happy Thursday!!
Do you love to read? I used to. I used to read a lot. Then I became a mom (twice... working on number 3) and the amount of time I had to sit, quietly and do anything basically disappeared.
I think it's safe to say that since my first was born, the only books I have read have brightly colored cartoons and movable parts or are focused on developmental milestones or claim to give all the 'secrets' to make your child a good sleeper (spoiler alert: some babies sleep well, others do not... the end).
Anywho, when my friends at The Blended Blog started their monthly book club, this little momma started feeling a little left out. Having said that, I couldn't wrap my mind around how on earth I could possibly entertain reading up to 4 books a month (you don't have to read them all) when I haven't even read one in the past 4 years. Impossible!
Then Leslie suggested "Audible", an app that allows you to listen to audiobooks - note: I'm planning a review post of Audible so I'll try not to spoil that too much here ;) The rest is HISTORY!! Since I started listening to books I've been able to not only keep up with the 4 books a month for the book club, but also add a few others in the mix. Go ME!!!
Here are the books that were chosen for April and my thoughts on them (I'll do my best to keep it brief and not give any spoilers).
The Silent Girls - a psychological thriller that focuses on a detective and his search for a missing girl. I'll be honest in saying I was unsure how much I'd like this one. I'm the woman that can't watch scary movies because I spook myself out even weeks after watching. Also, my timing for listening to this one was questionable (while away in a hotel for a conference - ALONE). Admittedly, it made a little weary on my solo trip to the gym in the wee hours on the morning, lucky for me, there were no deranged kidnappers. This book held my interest from start to finish, was a very easy listen and kept me wanting to find more time to listen. Plus, it had some great and unexpected twists and there's going to be a followup book :)
The Widower's Wife - another thriller (yikes) about a missing woman (wife and mother) and the investigation that takes place prior to the large insurance payout. I liked this book but I would rate it last out of the 4 for the month. Having said that, I still really enjoyed listening to it. The story line had a few twists but there were a couple parts I found a little predictable. It left me with a bunch of unanswered questions but I suppose that's the point in a decent book.
The Nightingale - can I just say "wow"? The truth is I was sort of questioning whether or not I'd enjoy this book given that it's based in WW2 and usually the novels I read aren't based in war-times. I was gripped, almost from the start, by this story. As far as audiobooks go, it was a long one at almost 17 hours but I found myself making time to listen because I was so attached to the characters. It was a difficult listen though and by 'difficult' I mean very emotional. The characters were well developed so I felt their emotions and triumphs deeply. It's a gut-wrenching novel that explores the terrors of war and hate but also how the everyday bravery of ordinary people can truly transform others and the world. This book made me think a lot and I'd highly recommend it. Heads up: heed caution while reading/listening in public... I may or may not have shed a few tears on the treadmill.
Small Great Things - I adored this book. This was actually the first book I listened to so not only was it the first book I endeavored to read/listen to in years, it was also my first experience with an audiobook. I could NOT get enough. This book, like the Nightingale, had me from the start. My emotions were pulled in so many directions and I found myself angry, ashamed, confused and often questioning the state of the world while reading this. You will both love and hate parts of the characters and you will not be able to put it down. There might be points where you're not sure if you can possibly take another word because there's so much unwarranted hate, but keep on. This book is worth it. I truly think it should be recommended reading for all as it really makes you think about racism and oppression and the ways in which we, sometimes unknowingly, contribute. LOVED.
Wanna join in on the book club fun? You're not too late to start reading one (or more) of our May picks!! Just go to The Blended Blog book club signup and you're all set