I fell super duper far behind last year with my reviews, which is a shame. There are a few books I read that I absolutely adored, but I’m so far removed from when I read them that I don’t think I’d be able to write a detailed critique. Instead, I’m just going to provide a few thoughts here and tell you that I HIGHLY recommend the books listed below.
Garden Spells: I LOVED this book. I read it in the middle of a south Georgia July, cooled by the shade of a porch and slow moving fans. Garden Spells is at once a love story to the south, a supernatural mystery, and a family drama. I admired the strength of the Waverly women, and adored the quaintness of Bascom, NC. I could almost smell the lavendar and rose petals from Claire’s kitchen, and I fell a little bit in love with the idea of gardening. If you grew up in the 90s loving Practical Magic like I did, you have to read this book. 5 Stars
The Veins of the Ocean: Reina’s early life is tragic. My heart ached for her unconditional love of her brother, and the first several chapters are painfully sad. But once she seeks a fresh start, the novel comes alive. The narrative eventually unfolds into a very sweet love story between two people looking for a future while holding on to the past. With gorgeous prose set in the heat of the Florida keys and Cuba, this book reveals the distinct hardships and struggles that immigrants face coming to America, while also underscoring the universal desire for love and intimacy. 4.5 Stars
Ready Player One: Y’all know I love a good audiobook, and this did not disappoint. Narrated perfectly by Wil Wheaton, the book follows the adventures of Wade Watts, aka Parzival, as he competes in the virtual world of the OASIS to find a hidden Easter egg left by James Halliday. Part science fiction, part fantasy, part 80s nostalgia, part YA, when this novel isn’t dropping pop culture trivia it’s thrusting the action forward at breakneck speed. I found myself taking the long way home so I could listen to Wheaton’s narration as long as possible. Such a fun adventure with a truly satisfying ending. 5 Stars.