Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee
Target Audience: Upper High School/ Adult
This was probably my favorite read of the summer. Author Harper Lee has long been known for her book To Kill A Mockingbird. After her recent death, they published this rough draft sequel that had previously been unknown. The storyline follows Jean Lousie or "Scout" as she grows up and grapples with her image of her father and the social issues of her times.
What I loved about it was the "snappy dialogue" (as one friend put it) and how the struggles that are felt could easily be about the controversies we are facing in our churches, society, and with each other today.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain
Target Audience: Upper High School/ Adult
Confession time: I was expecting to love this book. I've heard so much about it, and being an introvert myself, I thought this would be an epic read. There was plenty of great stuff here, but the focus was so business world orientated that it was a little less applicable to me than I had hopes of. I came away with thoughts to digest and ruminate over so I still recommend it, but just not as emphatically as I wish I could... especially to those not in the business setting.
Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
Target Audience: Middle Grades and up
Jacqueline Woodson writes with such grace and power. She has authored many books for middle grades that gently handle the "tough" issues of our society. This is her autobiography written in free verse that tells of her childhood lived in both the North and the South as well as her journey of finding her voice through writing. Lovely.
Additional Note: Award Winning!
Elena Vanishing by Elena Dunkle
Hope: and Other Luxuries by Clare Dunkle
Target Audience: High School and up
This is a two-in-one review about memoirs by a mother and daughter. These books tell the story of a daughter's journey with anorexia nervosa and a mother's desperate fight to help her recover. Each book is written from a different perspective of the same events. I couldn't stop thinking about this family as well as anorexia's part in our society... and how little about it we understand. I did miss having a faith based approach in these memoirs when it came to coping with mental illnesses and looking for
hope in hard situations.
Rating: Good to Epic
The Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Target Audience: High School
The Red Queen jumps on the dystopian and super hero bandwagons that are all the rage right now in YA literature. This society is divided by blood.. red and silver. If your veins bleed silver, you are likely blessed with supernatural abilities as well as the right to power, privilege, and riches. However, if you are unfortunate to be of the red blooded masses, your existence is to serve at the whims of the silvers. Mare Barrow is red blooded and desperate to help her family and friends survive. A twist reveals that she has a power of her own that may upset the uneasy balance between the two groups.
Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales: The Underground Abductor by Nathan Hale
Target Audience: Upper Elementary, Middle Grades
Nathan Hale has a collection of historical graphic novels that tell compelling tales of events from the past... The Donner Dinner Party, World War I stories, the Ironclad battle, and more. This tells the story of Araminta Ross or Harriet Tubman who was the narcoleptic hero of the underground railroad.
I thoroughly enjoyed the mashup of pictures and text along with history. Although I highly recommend for middle school boys, it is enjoyable for
The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly (5 Book Series)
Target Audience: Upper High School and Adult
Each summer my husband and I always choose audiobooks for our travels. Our selection has to be something we will both enjoy as well as highly entertaining in order to compel us to get back in the car for more driving. This summer we found the perfect fit in this series about a criminal defense attorney who conducts most of his business from the backseat of a Lincoln Town Car.
Mickey Hollar is rough around the edges but you can't help but to breathlessly cheer for this gritty, street smart, and cheeky lawyer who ends up in impossible situations.
Definitely for fans of John Grisham
Rating: Good to Epic (My husband said that I have to add the epic rating for him)
Bonus: This selection is what I am interested in reading soon. Several readers I follow gave this a high recommendation even to people who aren't really into science fiction. (And I do like science fiction!)