Foreign Circus' Folio Fete 2020

Converses75 Books Challenge for 2020

Afegeix-te a LibraryThing per participar.

Foreign Circus' Folio Fete 2020

Editat: gen. 2, 2020, 6:21 am

After a long hiatus, I'm going to try to reboot my literary life by rejoining the 75 challenge. I usually have no problems meeting the challenge, I just tend to fail at the documenting phase so here's hoping 2020 is my year :)

I'm back living overseas (Rabat, Morocco for the moment) and my actual books are mostly in storage which has taken getting used to - no more pulling a comfort read off the shelf when I'm not sure what to pick up next! I'm gradually adjusting to relying on my Kindle to read everything, but I sure do miss the tactile joy of turning the page. I'm also limited in my access to English language bookshops, so hoping to pick up some great recommendations browsing the group.

Editat: maig 2, 2020, 4:48 pm

First Quarter reads:

January 2020
1. In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen
2. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
3. Now That You Mention It by Kristan Higgins
4. Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty
5. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
6. Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
7. The Body in the Library by Agatha Christie
8. Echoes in Death by J.D. Robb
9. The Obsession by Nora Roberts
10. Misfit Match by Sydney Ann Clary
11. Becoming by Michelle Obama
12. The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
13. Whisper Network by Chandler Baker
14. The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare
15. The Governess Game by Tessa Dare
16. The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare

February 2020
17. Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield
18. Vendetta in Death by J.D. Robb
19. Golden in Death by J.D. Robb
20. A Night to Surrender by Tessa Dare
21. A Week to be Wicked by Tessa Dare
22. A Lady by Midnight by Tessa Dare
23. An Affair Before Christmas by Eloisa James
24. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

March 2020
25. The Girls in the Picture by Melanie Benjamin
26. Gabriel's Angel by Nora Roberts
27. Midnight Bayou by Nora Roberts
28. Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes
29. Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews
30. The Perfect Couple by Elin Hilderbrand
31. Home for Christmas by Nora Roberts
32. A Single Thread by Tracy Chevalier
33. Vendetta in Death by J.D. Robb
34. Golden in Death by J.D. Robb
35. Secrets in Death by J.D. Robb
36. Catch and Kill by Ronan Farrow

Editat: oct. 15, 2020, 3:05 pm

Second Quarter Reads:

April 2020

37. The Proposalby Mary Balogh
38. The Arrangement by Mary Balogh
39. The Escape by Mary Balogh
40. Only Enchanted by Mary Balogh
41. Only a Promise by Mary Balogh
42. Only a Kiss by Mary Balogh
43. Only Beloved by Mary Balogh
44. Someone to Love by Mary Balogh
45. Someone to Hold by Mary Balogh
46. Someone to Wed by Mary Balogh
47. Someone to Care by Mary Balogh
48. Someone to Trust by Mary Balogh
49. Someone to Honor by Mary Balogh
50. Someone to Remember by Mary Balogh
51. The Search by Nora Roberts

May 2020
52. Wilde in Love by Eloisa James
53. Too Wilde to Wed by Eloisa James
54. Born to be Wilde by Eloisa James
55. Say No to the Duke by Eloisa James
56. My One and Only Duke by Grace Burrows
57. When a Duchess Says I Do by Grace Burrows
58. Forever and a Duke by Grace Burrows
59. A Duke by Any Other Name by Grace Burrows
60. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
61. American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson
62. The Identicals by Elin Hilderbrand
63. The Traitor and the Spy by Ben Macintyre
64. The Oysterville Sewing Circle by Susan Wiggs

June 2020
65. Fleishman is in Trouble by Taffy Brodesser-Akner
66. A Spy Among Friends by Ben Macintyre
67. Unorthodox by Deborah Feldman
68. Say Yes to the Duke by Eloisa James
69. The Bride by Julie Garwood
70. Saving Grace by Julie Garwood
71. Hideaway by Nora Roberts
72. Rebellious Desire by Julie Garwood
73. What Ales the Earl by Sally MacKenzie
74. Gentle Warrior by Julie Garwood
75. The Lion's Lady by Julie Garwood
76. Honor's Splendour by Julie Garwood
77. In the Woods by Tana French
78. The Most Dangerous Duke in London by Madeline Hunter
79. What We Find by Robyn Carr
80. The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
81. Tremaine's True Love by Grace Burrowes
82. Daniel's True Desire by Grace Burrowes
83. Will's True Wish by Grace Burrowes
84. His Lordship's True Lady by Grace Burrowes

Editat: set. 27, 2020, 12:30 pm

Third Quarter Reads:

July 2020
85. The Liar by Nora Roberts
86. Alone by Lisa Gardner
87. The Killing Floor by Lee Child
88. Heartless by Mary Balogh
89. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
90. Normal People by Sally Rooney
91. Die Trying by Lee Child
92. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

August 2020
93. Prince of the Godborn by Geraldine Harris
94. The Children of the Wind by Geraldine Harris
95. The Dead Kingdom by Geraldine Harris
96. The Seventh Gate by Geraldine Harris
97. Tripwire by Lee Child
98. Pawn of Prophecy by David Eddings
99. Queen of Sorcery by David Eddings
100. Magician's Gambit by David Eddings
101. Castle of Wizardry by David Eddings
102. Enchanter's End Game by David Eddings
103. Her Final Words by Brianna Abuskers
104. Guardians of the West by David Eddings
105. King of the Murgos by David Eddings
106. Demon Lord of Karanda by David Eddings
107. Sorceress of Darshiva by David Eddings
108. The Seeress of Kell by David Eddings

September 2020
109. Running Blind by Lee Child
110. Echo Burning by Lee Child
111. When All the Girls Have Gone by Jayne Ann Krentz
112. Wired by Julie Garwood
113. Promise Not to Tell by Jayne Ann Krentz
114. Untouchable by Jayne Ann Krentz
115. Shadows in Death by J.D. Robb
116. What You Don't Know About Charlie Outlaw by Leah Stewart
117. The Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson
118. The Magic Misfits by Neil Patrick Harris
119. Deep Waters by Jayne Ann Krentz
120. The Vampire Knife by Jack Henseleit

Editat: gen. 2, 2021, 2:44 pm

Fourth Quarter Reads:

October 2020
121. Ernestine, Catastrophe Queen by Merrill Wyatt
122. The Magic Misfits: The Second Story by Neil Patrick Harris
123. Nantucket Wedding by Nancy Thayer
124. A Duchess in Name by Amanda Weaver
125. A Common Scandal by Amanda Weaver
126. A Reluctant Betrothal by Amanda Weaver
127. The Book of Essie by Meghan MacLean Weir
128. Someone to Romance by Mary Balogh
129. Three Weeks to Wed by Ella Quinn
130. The Beast of Beswick by Amalie Howard
131. My Rogue, My Ruin by Amalie Howard and Angie Morgan
132. The Queen's Fortune by Allison Pataki

November 2020
133. If You Tell by Gregg Olsen
134. The Cipher by Isabella Maldonado
135. The Rogue by Katharine Ashe
136. So Wild a Heart by Candace Camp
137. The Hidden Heart by Candace Camp
138. Secrets of the Heart by Candace Camp
139. The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer
140. The Truth About Dukes by Grace Burrowes
141. A Stolen Heart by Candace Camp
142. Promise Me Tomorrow by Candace Camp
143. No Other Love by Candace Camp
144. Her Scandalous Pursuit by Candace Camp
145. My Fake Rake by Eva Leigh
146. Affair Without End by Candace Camp
147. A Gentleman Always Remembers by Candace Camp
148. A Lady Never Tells by Candace Camp

December 2020
149. Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh
150. The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz
151. The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman
152. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
153. The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard
154. Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

gen. 2, 2020, 6:19 am

Best wishes for 2020!

gen. 2, 2020, 10:11 am

Another resolution is to keep up in 2020 with all my friends on LT. Happy New Year!

gen. 2, 2020, 12:57 pm

Welcome back! I'd love to visit Morocco someday!

gen. 2, 2020, 3:12 pm

Happy reading in 2020, Colleen!

gen. 3, 2020, 5:22 am

so I read In Farleigh Field a couple of years ago when it first came out, but apparently didn't review. I just reread it thinking it was the start of a series (I got a Kindle deal on The Tuscan Child and The Victory Garden but it turns out they aren't really a series). It's a little silly that my first book of the year isn't a new book, but c'est la vie!

I enjoyed In Farleigh Field though not as much as Bowen's Her Royal Spyness series. This book lacks the humor that makes the series so enjoyable, though it does feature some great characters. I enjoyed the view of WWII on the home front, and thought the key characters were well drawn. The problem for me is the rather abrupt end that doesn't explore at all the motivations of the people who were in fact working against the state as I think that would have been the most interesting conclusion. Everything just wrapped up too quickly which was disappointing as I felt invested in the affairs of the family. 3.5 stars for me.

gen. 4, 2020, 5:34 pm

The Thirteenth Tale was another re-read for me, one I'm shocked to discover I never reviewed. I read this book years ago and fell in love, not just with the story, but with the way the narrator fell into the story and pulled the reader with her. The language, the pictures it paints, the wreck of Angelfield and the family- they pulled me in all those years ago, and they pulled me in again today even though I knew the twist that was coming. This is a book written for readers, one that recognizes the magnetic pull of a good tale and the need to stay up all night to finish it. I've read Bellman and Black and though well-written, it didn't resonate for me the way The Thirteenth Tale did. I was a little afraid that reading this book again would ruin it- that I wouldn't find the same magic and so would ruin the memory of how good it was. Instead I am again bewitched, again finding it hard to shake off the tendrils of the story. 5 stars.

gen. 5, 2020, 9:11 pm

Welcome back! Hope you have a great year of reading!

gen. 7, 2020, 5:05 pm

My sister recommended Now That You Mention It and I too found it to be a solid good read though not really what I expected from Kristan Higgins. It took a bit of time to feel invested in the main character who at first I found a bit cold. As Nora's backstory unfolded, however, I found myself cheering for her and so her troubled family. I did find it a bit unrealistic that everyone in town maintained such hostility toward her for winning that scholarship - since she went on to be a doctor while the so-called "golden boy" Luke wrecked his car days later while drunk and high (also causing a permanent disability in his brother), it seems like people should have figured out she was always the better candidate! Overall the storyline was much darker than I expected, and I found the final resolution with Luke to be over the top. Nevertheless, a decent read - 4 stars.

Editat: gen. 14, 2020, 3:08 pm

Nine Perfect Strangers was an interesting read. Learning more about why each of these nine characters found themselves at this spa/resort engaging in a wellness program was a lovely microcosm of society. The way these stories slowly unfolded was masterfully handled, and each seemed perfectly realistic despite the somewhat overdrawn nature of the problems they faced. This isn't really a thriller, it's more a coming of age story despite the fact that the majority of the characters are already adults. Oddly intriguing, this at times trenchant look at the self-help industry nevertheless delivers a series of happy endings that satisfy the reader. 4 stars.

gen. 19, 2020, 11:00 am

I wasn't sure what to expect with Ready Player One but I'm so glad I gave this book a try. Though I myself don't play video games, I loved the treasure hunt element of this story, and couldn't help but embrace the 1980s memories that were so central to the plot. Though in some ones this is a terrifying vision of the future where people prefer to exist in the virtual world rather than the real world, still ultimately it celebrates the human connections as critical. It's also a rollickingly fun read. Highly recommended 4.5 stars.

gen. 24, 2020, 2:13 pm

After reading The Underground Railroad I can see why it won so many accolades. This rich and layered narrative is truly a must-read. The unremitting pain of Cora's life was presented in such a deadpan way it underlined the stark horror of slavery. Envisioning the Underground Railroad as a real railroad gave the whole concept an air of fantasy and power for the reader that I think must echo the way reality of it at the time- spoken about only carefully, treasured for the sliver of hope for escape that it provided. The story is often violent and disturbing and it does not make for a comfortable read, but no story about slavery should. Once I started reading, I could not put it down, and I'm still thinking about it weeks after finishing it. 5 stars.

Editat: gen. 30, 2020, 4:09 pm

The Body in the Library is one of my favorite Agatha Christie mysteries, one that truly reveals the genius of Miss Marple. The mystery itself is perfect- it has glamorous movie people and the village staples plus a healthy dose of suspicious characters. In addition, it has a deft psychological discussion of guilt and innocence and the power of gossip to ruin lives that would not be out of place in a modern conversation about crime. Highly recommended- 5 stars.

gen. 30, 2020, 4:03 pm

Echoes in Death is yet another re-read from a series I very much enjoy. Sometimes the mystery isn't as important to me as where Eve and Roarke are going, but this offering is one where the mystery itself was extremely engaging. Watching Eve track the the killer was very satisfying, as was the twist that anchored the emotional heart of the book. Vintage J.D. Robb- a great entry into a great series!

gen. 30, 2020, 4:16 pm

The Obsession is a wonderful romantic thriller- one of the most enjoyable of Nora Roberts offerings in my opinion. I loved that the story started so early in Naomi's life given how formative those experiences were. I felt great affection for Naomi, Mason, Seth and Harry (I would love to see Mason star in a later book) in ways that truly vested me in the story. Xander too is a great hero- strong, smart, and real in a way few romance heroes really are. Watching he and Naomi carve out a relationship while past and present crashed around them made for an extremely satisfying read. Add in the photography and home renovation elements, and this is basically my perfect romantic thriller. 5 stars!

Editat: feb. 1, 2020, 10:45 am

I picked up Misfit Match because I love another one of Clary's books (The Duchess and the Devil) and was hoping to find the same magic; sadly I did not. The book was a fine read with an interesting plot, but I just didn't find that same connection to the characters. I only finished it a couple of weeks ago, and already I have a hard time remembering much of anything about the specifics. Catherine's family was terrible but I thought Marcus could have done a much better job of rescuing her from them, and Catherine herself was too dithery for my taste. I also thought there was too much that went unsaid- this book would definitely have been longer to let us see Catherine and Marcus actually develop a relationship. An OK read but not one I'm likely to pick up again. 3 stars.

Editat: feb. 2, 2020, 11:43 am

I don't usually read memoirs or autobiographies, but I made an exception for Becoming because I wanted to learn more about what it was like to be Michelle Obama, a woman with no love for politics and with a life and career of her own, thrust into the role of the First Lady in a truly historical presidency. I love the book focused less on her time in the White House and more on the life that led up to those years. learning more about her family, about the circumstances that formed her, were eye-opening and helped explain her later focus on family and children and health. Her voice is powerful and unapologetic, and throughout she never loses sight of herself as a person and not just a symbol or a spouse. Highly recommended- 5 stars!

feb. 2, 2020, 1:29 pm

The Alice Network is a fictional account strongly rooted in history. This story of women and war is an eye-opening reminder of man's inhumanity to man, and the far-reaching impact of that violence. Both Charlie and Eve carry the scars of war, and finding out how those scars are connected is the central premise of the story. I enjoyed very much the interactions between these two generations of women, and found those the strongest part of the novel. I did feel that the knowledge of what exactly happened to Eve took so long to emerge that its impact was blunted by the rapidly approaching denouement. I found the final confrontation unsatisfying because I felt it wrapped things up rather abruptly. That said, I did appreciate the fast-forward at the end to see how Charlie and Eve were faring in the future. All in all, an enjoyable read. 4 stars.

feb. 4, 2020, 4:23 pm

Whisper Network was a timely and trenchant read. This story of women dealing with an abusive boss and with the aftermath of his death hits hard on themes that are relevant to so many women. The female characters are all flawed in their own ways which makes them highly realistic. The impact of their experiences with the abuser are so different and yet there are commonalities that they find bringing them together. An excellent read on a disturbingly common problem- highly recommended (4.5 stars).

feb. 8, 2020, 1:11 pm

I loved the beginning of The Duchess Deal when Emma shows up in a wedding dress made for Ash's former fiance, demanding to get paid. Emma is feisty and proud and compassionate- all a person could want in a romance novel heroine. Ash is a wounded warrior with a wickedly dry sense of humor which makes him an excellent hero. They share a great chemistry and a great dynamic, and watching them fall in love and come to terms with a future together is delightful. All in all a great read - 4 stars!

feb. 23, 2020, 8:56 pm

>21 ForeignCircus: I am still awaiting the book arriving in Malaysia in paperback format. She has always struck me as being a great example to ladies everywhere and a genuinely good person. In retrospect the days of Barack and Michelle in the White House are quickly being seen as halcyon days.

abr. 12, 2020, 1:02 am

I wanted my message this year to be fairly universal in a time we all should be pulling together, whatever our beliefs. Happy Celebration, Happy Sunday, Colleen.

What is the situation like in Morocco at the moment?

maig 2, 2020, 4:34 pm

Morocco closed its international airspace in mid-March and declared a state of emergency because of the pandemic. There is a curfew from 7pm to 5am and movement is very restricted even outside of those times. Grocery stores and pharmacies are the only businesses that are open. It makes for a hard Ramadan for those who are celebrating...

set. 27, 2020, 12:36 pm

The Vampire Knife is a great spooky tale for middle grade readers; heck, I’m an adult and I enjoyed it! Anna’s ability to tell a scary story combines well with Max’s desire to be frightened (but not too frightened). When they go on an adventure with their father, the Professor, they find themselves in a real life scary story featuring wolves, fairies, a bear, and a vampire. Thankfully they also make a new friend Isabella whose grandmother makes a mean garlic soup. Scary, funny, and engaging – I definitely recommend this one! 5 stars.

oct. 21, 2020, 9:35 am

I love books about books or bookstores or book lovers, but even that was not enough to carry The Bookshop of Yesterdays. The central “mystery” that Miranda spends her time unravelling was clear to me as a reader just a few pages in, so it was hard for me to imagine an intelligent character couldn’t have seen the big reveal coming long before she did. I thought Miranda was surprisingly shallow; she casually dropped both her live-in boyfriend and her job in Philly without offering anyone a true explanation of why; I admit Jay seemed like a drip, but Miranda honestly never gave him a chance to really understand what was happening in LA. The literary references were the best parts of the book- those and Sheila who came across as the only fully realized character. A sadly disappointing read. 2 stars.

oct. 21, 2020, 9:45 am

What You Don't Know About Charlie Outlaw was a surprisingly deep look at the tribulations of love and loss and stardom. Both Charlie and Josie are wonderful characters – you can’t help but cheer for them as the story progresses. The writing was vibrant and evocative, and the author skillfully portrayed the perils of both kidnapping and fame without judgement and without minimizing the impact of either. I was pulled into the story from the very first pages and stayed up late to finish because I just couldn’t bear to put it down. Highly recommended - 5 stars!

oct. 21, 2020, 9:53 am

I love Julie Garwood’s older historical novels and so was excited to try a more modern offering but Wired was a sad disappointment. Part of a sprawling series, it seemed dialed in to me. The main characters were never really developed, especially Liam, and they were just too unbelievable. Allison is 22/23 going on 16 in terms of emotional maturity, she is a beautiful in demand model, a computer genius, and her body is referred to as “perfect” more than once. Liam has “the body of a Greek god” and is a hotshot FBI agent whose actual job details are never really explained. The suspense element is never that suspenseful and I found myself completely uninterested in unravelling the mystery. All in all a disappointing read - 1 star.

oct. 21, 2020, 10:03 am

Promise Not to Tell is the second in a series but it worked well as standalone read (though I did enjoy it enough to order the other two in the series after I finished.) I thought Virginia’s struggles with anxiety were well drawn, and found the relationship between Virginia and Cabot was well drawn. The mystery element helped build tension that mirrored the relationship tension, and kept me guessing about the identity of the villain. All in all, a great beach read - 4 stars!

oct. 21, 2020, 11:09 am

I didn't know much about the history of early Hollywood before reading The Girls in the Picture, but it certainly came alive within these pages. It was wonderful to see that history from the perspective of the women involved and I thought Benjamin did a wonderful job giving voice to those long dead. I confess I didn't really like some of the main characters which made me feel less engaged than with previous works by this author, but the book was an enjoyable read nevertheless - 4 stars.

oct. 21, 2020, 11:17 am

The Magic Misfits: The Second Story, the second in the Magic Misfits series is another enjoyable read but definitely not a standalone – you’ll want to read these in order. I love the group of kids involved in this story though this book didn’t focus as much on character development as the first. The glimpses into Laila’s backstory helped round her out, even if there was a little too much Little Orphan Annie about the elements of it. It is clear the series is building to a bigger denouement across all the books; I for one can’t wait to learn more about how Theo does what he does with a bow! The magic tricks and codes provide some additional fun for any budding sleuths or performers. 4 stars.

oct. 21, 2020, 11:27 am

Ernestine is a very resourceful young woman, determined to ready her family and her town for the zombie apocalypse (even if she has to start it herself!) She lives in a building full of eccentric performers with her kind (if absentminded) artistic parents and her younger stepbrother. Though Ernestine is admittedly slow to realize the real live mystery involving her landlady trumps her concerns about the living dead, once she’s on the case, the would-be murderer doesn’t stand a chance. Ernestine has a complicated backstory that helps reveal the reasons behind some of her eccentric ideas, and she is clearly the glue holding her quirky family together. Ernestine, Catastrophe Queen is an enjoyable read even for an adult! 4 stars.

oct. 22, 2020, 10:51 am

I've read and enjoyed Balogh's Westcott series, and Someone to Romance was no exception. Though it was lovely to finally see Jessica find happiness, I had a hard time shaking my initial dislike of her based on previous books. I felt like she was never a fully fleshed out heroine- I never really understood what made her tick. Gabriel on the other hand was a delightful hero, and I did enjoy the way they came together as friends rather than found love in one mighty and unexpected flash. Balogh is a wonderful writer and I find myself hoping the next book focuses on Estelle who I have always enjoyed. 4 stars.

oct. 24, 2020, 11:10 am

Three Weeks to Wed lost me from almost the very beginning, after the hero and heroine shared one meal before falling into bed and being struck by eternal love. Never mind that the hero didn't even know the name of his beloved, or that she was the guardian for seven siblings - still it was love! The central conflict always seems contrived - Grace loved him enough to sleep with him after one meal, but didn't trust he would make a good guardian? The evil uncle doesn't enter the book until more than halfway through and is quickly dealt with - he would have made a much more convincing villain if he had entered the story early enough to actually threaten the outcome of this relationship. I slogged through to finish but won't be seeking out any more in this series. 2 stars.

oct. 24, 2020, 11:38 am

It's impossible not to love a book that starts with a collision in a bookshop, even if the hero does make off with the heroine's prized find! Add in a heroine who sets clocks for a living, a neverending succession of doll funerals, and a sexy hero who is unexpectedly kind to all and you have a lovely love story. Well-written dialogue, engaging characters, and a delightful cast of secondary characters combine to make The Governess Game a great read. 4 stars!

oct. 29, 2020, 11:07 am

Before picking up The Queen's Fortune, I had never heard of Desiree Clary or her relationship with Napoleon which seems a bit incredible given how prominent a role she played in the era. The novel is well-written and appears to mostly follow the facts. Once I started reading, the story pulled me in despite my ambivalent feelings about Napoleon as a leader. I did think there was a lot of focus on the Napoleonic phase of Desiree's life and not a lot on her lengthy time in Sweden - I find myself wanting to know more about what kind of queen she turned out to be. All in all, an engaging and enjoyable read.

nov. 14, 2020, 10:07 pm

Nice to see you chugging nicely towards 2X75 Colleen.

How is Morocco coping with the pandemic?

des. 20, 2020, 4:18 pm

>40 PaulCranswick: thanks Paul! Numbers here are steadily rising like everywhere else these days. International travel is significantly curtailed and hospitals are reaching ICU capacity in major cities. Lots of talk here about vaccines and the terrible impact of the pandemic on the tourist industry which underpins much of the economy here.

des. 20, 2020, 4:19 pm

I really enjoyed The Nothing Man - a creative thriller written as a book inside a book. Though Eve's motivation for writing becomes evident to the read long before it is officially revealed, that doesn't in any way take away from the mystery. The characters are engaging and realistic, and I couldn't put the book down once i started reading. It would have been a five star read but for an incongruity at the end that I won't spoil here - suffice to say a character indicates an awareness of something that they have no way to know given the denouement as presented. Still, that is a small niggle as it doesn't actually impact the resolution of the mystery, just of the aftermath. 4 stars.

des. 20, 2020, 6:20 pm

A creative look at the limbo between life and death, The Midnight Library was a wonderful read. After all, what bookworm hasn't imagined a library of possible lives just waiting to be read? I quite enjoyed Nora's story of self-discovery through the infinite possibilities every life encompasses. The writing is strong, the characters engaging, and the tradeoffs between perfect choices for one vs. many thought-provoking. Once I started, I couldn't put it down - highly recommend.

des. 25, 2020, 3:26 am

I hope you get some of those at least, Colleen, as we all look forward to a better 2021.

gen. 2, 2021, 2:46 pm

so my total for the year was 154 books which seems like a lot and yet at the same time not enough for a year of quarantine. I was good about tracking but not so good about reviewing - maybe I can do better in 2021. Happy New Year to all!

gen. 3, 2021, 9:42 am

I confess I found Ninth House a little hard to get into at first, and sometimes felt the bounce between present and past was a little contrived, but once I got immersed into the story, I found myself letting go of those irritations. Alex is a complicated character- fragile when dealing with personal things but strong and resilient when it comes to protecting others. The supernatural/magical elements were really interestingly handled, with most people unaware they exist and some of those in the know seemingly barely so. I found the solution to the mystery well drawn, though perhaps overly complicated as one of the most interesting elements was only fleshed out at the very end; I would have preferred that possibility was raised.explored earlier in the novel with only the identity of the person involved kept from the reader. Nevertheless, an enjoying read that left me hungering for the second installment - 4 stars.