Saturday, June 28, 2014

Now I See You by Nicole C. Kear





Now I See You by Nicole C. Kear
St. Martins Press
Publication Date:  June 24, 2014
Date Read:  June 20, 2014

I received an advance reader edition of this book from St. Martin's Press and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

4 Stars

 I do not read this type of book very often.  I am really more of a fiction reader because my reading goal is simply to be entertained.  Every once in a while a book outside of my usual fiction reading catches my attention as this book did.  A book that tells the story not of someone who suddenly goes blind and must adapt but of someone who is told at a very young age that she has only a few years of sight left.  

This is Nicole's story.  Nicole is diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa at age 19.  She is told that she will be blind in a decade or so.  Nicole shares her diagnosis with her family but otherwise keeps her declining vision to herself.  As a result of her lack of sight, she does have a few close calls but few know about her problem.  

Nicole eventually marries and becomes a mother which bring on more challenges.  The author is a remarkable story teller and I found myself pulled into her story.  I will admit that I did not understand why keeping her diagnosis secret was so important to her.  

I would recommend this book.  It was a quick read and told an interesting story.  I found myself wondering what I would have done had I found myself in Nicole's place.  I could not even imagine what I would attempt to do if I learned that I only had a limited time to see the world.  This was the first work by Nicole C. Kear that I have had the chance to read.  I would be interested in reading future works by this author.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Half a King by Joe Abercrombie






Half a King by Joe Abercrombie
Random House Publishing Group
Publication Date:  July 15, 2014
Date Read:  June 6, 2014

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Random House Publishing Group and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

Solid 5 Stars!

When I first saw this book on Net Galley, I will admit that I passed right by it.  I have never read anything by Joe Abercrombie and I must admit I am way behind on my reading.  It was not long until I started seeing everyone talking about how great this book is on Goodreads  so I decided to take a second look.  I am so glad that I took that second look because my Goodreads friends were right - this is a fantastic book.

The writing in this book was superb.  As I was reading this book, I was amazed at how the pages just seemed to fly by.  The characters were simply amazing.  I loved Yarvi.  He was smart and resourceful and a simply wonderful character.  The secondary characters were written with equal care.  From Yarvi's mother, his uncle, to his oar mates and Nothing, all of these characters brought depth to the story and helped to bring the story to life.  

This book really had everything I could have asked for: lots of action, a little romance (just a little), friendship, mystery, and a whole lot of excitement.   I am not going to share the plot in this review.  This is such a fast paced book that I feel that the best way to discover the plot is to simply read this book.   This is a book that I feel comfortable recommending to all readers.  I still cannot believe that I have missed out on Joe Abercrombie before this book.  I will definitely be looking for other works by this author and future works in this series.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Never Say Goodbye by Susan Lewis



Never Say Goodbye by Susan Lewis
Random House Publishing Group
Publication Date:  April 8, 2014
Date Read:  June 1, 2014

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Random House Publishing Group and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

4 Stars

This was a good book that took me forever to read.  I spent almost two months reading this book.  When I requested this book from Net Galley, I had absolutely no idea that it was about somebody battling breast cancer.  I am not sure that I would have made that request at this point in my life if I known that little piece of information.

My mother is currently battling breast cancer for the third time.  Her first battle was over 17 years ago when she had her first mastectomy.  We thought she had beat it but 9 years later it showed up again, so she went through more chemo.  Once again, the family thought that she had beat it.  Unfortunately, we were not so lucky and she was diagnosed with a different form of breast cancer in the fall of 2013.  My life since her diagnosis has consisted of going to every surgery, every doctor appointment, and every chemo treatment.  I had my first week in 2014 that I did not need to take her to a doctor appointment just a couple of weeks ago.

I am sharing this short glimpse into my life because I think it has a big impact on how I look at a book like this one.  Since I have spent a lot of time reading in the oncologist's office this year, I often found myself setting this book aside to read something else.   I read to escape.  At this point in my life, I want to read about things other than cancer.  I think I chose the wrong time to read this book.

This book was well written and I grew to like all of the characters.  I must admit that I wanted to reach into the book and shake some sense into Josie quite a few times during the book.  I understand that she was in serious denial but some of her actions drove me crazy.  I really liked Bel's character and found her friendship with Josie to be authentic. 

This is not an uplifting book.  It deals with cancer and how it impacts the lives of everyone close to the patient.  While Bel is not a cancer patient, she has quite a few difficult issues that she is dealing with during this story.  Josie helps Bel out just as much as Bel helps Josie which is how friendship should work.  All of the characters grow over the course of the story and discover what is really important.

I would recommend this book to others with the warning that it deals with cancer.  This was the first book by Susan Lewis that I have had the opportunity to read.  I look forward to reading other works by this author in the future.
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