For better or for worse, the UK book cover of Defy the Stars isn’t befitting of the story. Romance isn’t central to the plot. The overarching theme was what constitutes humanity, which I thought was explored exceedingly well in this book. It was also about sacrifice to save others and the chase to live forever.
Windfall is a book that’s bound to appeal to fans of slow burn romance. There’s no love at first sight, but feelings that Alice harboured for years on end. Friendships came first, which I enjoyed, and all that followed unfolded at good pace. I have to say, of the four books I’ve read by Jennifer E. Smith, Windfall is my favourite so far. The character development was solid, even if the characters themselves weren’t the most likeable.
After reading and enjoying Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe last year, I couldn’t wait for The Inexplicable Logic of My Life to be released. On several counts, Sáenz’s book lived up to my expectations. The prose, though simple, once again was stellar! I love introspective characters, and after reading two books from Sáenz, I’m convinced that he’s a master at writing them. And while single parents are ubiquitous in YA fiction, Sal had an adoptive father who was gay, thereby expanding representation for non-traditional families.
The House of New Beginnings to me, was a comforting book to read. Following the lives of three women at crossroads, this is a book that speaks about hope amidst uncertainty. Naturally, what first caught my eye in the synopsis was Rosa, the sous chef. Now, I found out she’s more of a line cook but ultimately, that deviating detail doesn’t matter all too much. She lives and breathes food and that’s where she finds solace.
Margot & Me, while set in contemporary times also grapples with the past set during World War II through a diary. What I loved about this book was how the stories of three generations knitted together. Fliss and her grandmother, Margot, were so at odds that Fliss’s mother was the only reason they put up with one another. Watching that relationship develop throughout the pages was immensely touching. Although, how Fliss came to read Margot’s diary didn’t entirely sit well with me. But you know, curiosity and what not…