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Liane Moriarty: Big Little Lies (Paperback, 2017, Berkley) 4 stars

Good, and Better

4 stars

I try to start reviews from the bottom up, by that I mean giving it stars as I go through my own personal criteria. This is probably the reason I almost never give a book under 3 stars, I don't finish books I hate reading (I might want to rethink my personal rating system because of this as I'm not a book critic so it doesn't really matter).

The plot and pacing of this book are adequate. It's a well written tale, with a few cliches and character tropes that sort of nagged at me throughout. Yesterday, though, I realized it was a four star because I kept on bitching to my wife about different characters.

It didn't matter that the story wasn't the most engaging, all of these characters had become so real to me throughout that I was wishing I could sit them down and talk to some …

Stephen King: Mr. Mercedes (2014) 4 stars

In a mega-stakes, high-suspense race against time, three of the most unlikely and winning heroes …

What a ride.

4 stars

I hate myself a little for that title.

Every time I read a King novel, I'm somehow freshly reminded at how good he is at writing characters. Each one is incredibly unique, and frankly I don't know how he continues to do it despite his astoundingly prolific career that's now several decades long.

Mr. Mercedes is a departure from my normal King read. I usually pick out a classic horror every October to read, but my step-mother-in-law (I know, it's the best I can come up with), said I absolutely had to read this series. Without any spoilers I can confidently say that she has a severely, and wonderfully, twisted mind. This is roughly the equivalent of a an incredibly well down Netflix adaptation of a true crime story.

There are no bumps or jumps in the night, no creepy crawlies, or murderous clowns. The accuracy and...probability of this story …

Jo Nesbø: The bat (2012, Random House Canada) 4 stars

Before Harry took on the neo-Nazi gangs of Oslo, before he met Rakel, before The …

Flawed Translation

2 stars

I’d love to say the main reason I didn’t like this book was the translation, which was absolutely horrendous, but the story itself was extremely dated in ways that were quite uncomfortable to read through.

Primarily though the translation was what kept me out of sync. There were moments where it genuinely felt like I was reading through a thesaurus. Not necessarily a bad thing, but it did not fit the tone or voice of the story at all.

Alice Oseman: Loveless (Paperback, German language, 2022, Loewe Verlag GmbH) 4 stars

Das Buch ist bei deiner Buchhandlung vor Ort und bei vielen Online-Buchshops erhältlich! Warten auf …

An Important Book

4 stars

Content warning Some minor story spoilers here, fair warning.

Victoria Schwab: Gallant (Hardcover, 2022, Greenwillow Books) 4 stars

The ending is abrupt, but..

4 stars

I agree with other reviews I've seen on here that the ending for this book leaves a bit to be desired, and is incredibly abrupt. I just don't think that takes enough away from the characters and world building that led up to those final moments. I thoroughly enjoyed my brief time in the world Schwab builds around Gallant. If anything I want more of it, but I'll take this glimpse.

Jonathan Bazzi, Alice Whitmore: Fever (2022, Scribe Publications) 5 stars

Oh so human

5 stars

I loved everything about this book. The tale Jonathan had to tell, the way he told it, the sheer humanity of it. The pace of each chapter, and the narrative technique of a life's tale catching up to a moment. Absolutely magical.

I'm also a first generation American, my father having emmigrated from the Veneto region during WWII to Boston. Even just in the cadence and tempo you can feel the 'italianess' dripping from every sentence. There's just an attitude that jumps out from the pages that reminds me so much of my household when my grandparents lived with us when I was younger. Mine were nono and noni, not nonno and nonna, but the conversations, the casual sexism, the family structure requirements, they were all the same.

This book made me cry in pain, and feel all warm and fuzzy with its familiarity, all wrapped in the most beautiful …