books54

 

Right this minute I am halfway through this  book- Year of No Sugar: A Memoir by Eve Schaub. Its really, really good. I am picky about my nonfiction because while I love to learn, I hate to be bored. Nonfiction must be gripping yet interesting and if it makes me laugh, all the better! Because I am into  nutrition and health, this book totally struck a chord.

For one year, the author and her family decide to give up sugar. Not only is it toxic to our systems  but its found in everything and almost impossible to avoid completely. But Eve goes for it, becoming a detective of sorts to find out WHY its everywhere and what we can do to avoid it. She tells us about how she went deep into science to learn how its bad for our bodies and what we can do about it. I love books like this. I’m not quite done but I know I’ll finish later. And although I am an avid label reader, I am now looking at everything for the high fructose corn syrup content (stay away from it).

*

I just can’t wait for you to read The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry. I mentioned this one before but want to let you know its due out in April! I just loved this novel, full of quirky characters.

A.J. is a grumpy bookseller on a small island who only stocks the books he deems worthy of reading. His wife has passed away and his most cherished possession, a rare collection of poems, has been stolen. He hates the way things are always changing and isn’t grateful for the people in his life including his well meaning sister in law, a kind policeman, and Amelia, a new sales rep from a publishing house.

Then one day, a package arrives on his doorstep that changes the course of his entire life. This book was so good! I loved it. Heartwarming, funny at times, and you cannot miss this one. Right up there with my favorite books!

*

Another book I couldn’t put down was A Single Breath by Lucy Clarke. I like books that move quickly and this moved fast! Eva has only been married eight months to Jackson when he drowns off the coast while fishing. Completely distraught, Eva decides to travel to Tasmania where Jackson’s estranged father and brother live. Her hope is to learn more about her husband and grieve with his family.

When she gets to Tasmania, Jackson’s alcoholic father is rude and tells her Jackson should have never married her. Eva goes in search of Saul, Jackson’s brother, hoping to understand the father’s behavior and Jackson’s life. She doesn’t exactly get a warm welcome from Saul but when she suffers a miscarriage, he’s the only one around to help. Slowly Eva and Saul become friends and Eva begins to learn the truth about her husband. I don’t want to give anymore away because you have to read this novel. Its  a mystery that kept me up until the wee hours of the night. And by wee hours, I mean I stayed up past ten p.m. to finish it!

*

I read this one a while back and didn’t post a review so I have to include it today! One Hundred Names by Cecelia Ahern. Here’s the Goodreads synopsis:  Journalist Kitty Logan’s career is being destroyed by scandal – and now she faces losing the woman who guided and taught her everything she knew. At her terminally ill friend’s bedside, Kitty asks – what is the one story she always wanted to write? The answer lies in a file buried in Constance’s office: a list of one hundred names. There is no synopsis, nothing to explain what the story is or who these people are. The list is simply a mystery. But before Kitty can talk to her friend, it is too late. With everything to prove, Kitty is assigned the most important task of her life: to write the story her mentor never had the opportunity to. Kitty not only has to track down and meet the people on the list, but find out what connects them. And, in the process of hearing ordinary people’s stories, she starts to understand her own.

*

In the mood for something deep? Try Long Man by Amy Greene. I liked this one a lot and can’t wait to see what the author comes out with next. Her books have a certain style to them and like her first novel, Bloodroot, this one takes place in the south. But its not quirky funny southern fiction, its serious and gripping!

Synopsis: A river called Long Man has coursed through East Tennessee from time immemorial, bringing sustenance to the people who farm along its banks and who trade between its small towns. But as Long Man opens, the Tennessee Valley Authority’s plans to dam the river and flood the town of Yuneetah for the sake of progress-to bring electricity and jobs to the hardscrabble region-are about to take effect. Just one day remains before the river will rise, and most of the town has been evacuated.

Among the holdouts is a young mother, Annie Clyde Dodson, whose ancestors have lived for generations on her mountaintop farm; she’ll do anything to ensure that her three-year-old daughter, Gracie, will inherit the family’s land. But her husband wants to make a fresh start in Michigan, where he has found work that will secure the family’s future. As the deadline looms, a storm as powerful as the emotions between them rages outside their door. Suddenly, they realize that Gracie has gone missing. Has she simply wandered off into the rain? Or has she been taken by Amos, the mysterious drifter who has come back to town, perhaps to save it in a last, desperate act of violence? Suspenseful, visceral, gorgeously told, Long Man is a searing portrait of a tight-knit community brought together by change and crisis, and of one family facing a terrifying ticking clock.

*

Catherine McKenzie is for sure one of my favorite authors. She writes really good books and I have loved every single one! Her latest is called Hidden.

While walking home from work one day, Jeff Manning is hit by a car and dies. Left behind are his wife Claire and his co-worker Tish. The story is told from the points of view of these three characters. There may or may not have been something going on between Tish and Jeff, but she feels the need to attend his funeral as the company’s representative. There, she meets Claire who soon wonders what Tish is doing at Jeff’s funeral, something doesn’t add up to her. We slowly learn about the relationship between Jeff and Tish, and the marriage of Jeff and Claire.

Life and love is messy sometimes, and complicated. The author does a great job of allowing us to understand each character and their motivations. Highly recommended!

*

Last but not least is Perfect by Rachel Joyce. You  might know the author from one of my favorite books last year, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. The author has a wonderful writing style, clear and descriptive and intriguing. I’m eagerly waiting for her next book!

Here’s the synopsis:  In 1972, two seconds were added to time. It was in order to balance clock time with the movement of the earth. Byron Hemming knew this because James Lowe had told him and James was the cleverest boy at school. But how could time change? The steady movement of hands around a clock was as certain as their golden futures.

Then Byron’s mother, late for the school run, makes a devastating mistake. Byron’s perfect world is shattered. Were those two extra seconds to blame? Can what follows ever be set right?