H is for hawk, and also for heavy. This book was not a walk in the park! I started reading it on the plane on the way to Austin to visit some friends, and the writing was definitely beautiful in places. However, I had trouble turning off my concern for the author. For some reason moreso than in other books with messed up protagonists, I just really couldn’t get over how much she absolutely needed some help. (I mean, also, she wasn’t really a protagonist; she is a real person.) I’m a bit amazed that this book got as much of the popular reception that it did given its obscure subject matter and good writing!

This was March’s book club read, and I lurved it. I have a love/hate relationship with Eat, Pray, Love (also by Gilbert), in that I loved it the first time I read it and hated it the second. I also read her book about marriage, Committed, in which I discovered that I pretty much disagreed with every opinion she had about marriage. However, she’s an engaging writer, and while this book had some odd hippy-dippy ideas, I really related to most of it. In fact, it’s helped me being trying to embrace creativity for creativity’s sake!

Spell check underlined “Anne” when I typed it into the Amazon search box, so clearly the bots have not read the novel! My college roommate loves the Anne books like I love Little House on the Prairie, so when I saw the entire collection for sale for $0.99 on Kindle recently I bought them. I figure they would be good comfort reading for in between other books. I enjoyed it okay, but for me Anne is no Laura Ingalls.

Wherein I once again go down the rabbit hole of a young adult dystopian fiction series. I’ve known of this series for quite some time but never read it. I’m not going to lie, I enjoyed this book as per usual. I can definitely see merit to all of the comparisons to The Giver. Many aspects of the Society seem yanked straight from Lois Lowry! But this is definitely a different book. I appreciate that there were moments when Condie tapped into the poetic. The plot was far from perfect–there were some holes–but it was a readable YA love story in the vein that I enjoy.

I enjoyed this book somewhat more than I expected to, given how I felt about Amy Poehler and Mindy Kaling’s books! I was glad that I had watched the show Master of None on Netflix before reading it, because it enhanced my experience to be able to hear it in Ansari’s voice. (Plus I had some context for his kooky sense of humor.) In fact, I’ve had the audiobook recommended to me because he reads it. I love that I love in a world where a random standup comic can have a sociological question and can find a researcher to embark upon a study of it with him and can then write a delightful, digestible book of their findings.

Laura Lindeman

Laura Lindeman