The Siberian American: Seven Books I Read This Summer

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Seven Books I Read This Summer

With the constant changes in Christopher’s work schedule, I have spent less time sleeping and more time reading this summer. The result is that from June 1-August 30, I read 32 books. That’s a little crazy to me since there have been times when I haven’t read that many books in a year. I won’t bore y’all with all 32 books (and I am skipping all the books I read for the Literary Ladies Summer Challenge since I posted reviews here), but I wanted to share some of my favorites.


The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler
c/o NetGalley 
Simon receives a mysterious book that is the key to unlocking a curse his family has suffered for generations. I have seen a lot of people compare this book to The Night Circus, but I don't think that's fair. The only thing alike about the two books is they're both well written and about a circus. That being said, I loved The Book of Speculation. The past/present format worked really well to explain the curse on Simon's family, and the beautiful writing kept me interested the whole time. I highly recommend it.



Tiny Little Thing by Beatriz Williams 
c/o NetGalley 
I have mentioned my love for The Secret Life of Violet Grant in the past, so I was really excited to find out Beatriz Williams was writing more books about the Schuyler sisters. I didn’t love Tiny Little Things quite as much as The Secret Life of Violet Grant because Tiny didn’t have Vivian’s spunk, but I was intrigued by Tiny's story, especially about the incriminating photograph. It was interesting to learn more about high society in the 1960s and the pressure Tiny felt to be perfect. The Secret Life of Violet Grant and Tiny Little Thing are loosely linked and work as stand alone novels. Now I can’t wait to read Along the Infinite Sea.


The Flying Circus by Susan Crandall 
c/o NetGalley
I wasn't sure if I was going to like this book, but it turned into one of my favorite reads of the year. I liked that it was focused on the 1920s and really liked Henry, Gil, and Cora, three strangers with secrets from their past that join together to host a flying circus. The book was very well written and kept me entertained. I liked Henry as the main character and enjoyed learning more about barnstorming and planes in the 1920s. I honestly didn't want this book to end.


Before We Were Strangers by Renee Carlino 
c/o NetGalley 
What a unique, sweet, and touching story. I loved the concept of a “missed connection” post on Craigslist and how the author wrote about Grace and Matt's time in college falling in love and what made it all fell apart. It was both heartbreaking and uplifting. A great summer read!


A Window Opens by Elisabeth Egan 
c/o NetGalley 
What this book isn't: a comedy. I really don't think it's fair to compare it to Where'd You Go, Bernadette.
What this book is: A beautiful, well-written story of a mom who has too much on her plate: trying to fit into a new job after working part-time, dealing with new financial problems after her husband leaves his job, and worrying about her sick father. Not to mention raising her three kids and helping her husband deal with his new career change. It was interesting to read about how Alice deals with the pressure and the decisions she ultimately has to make. I would definitely recommend this book-just don't expect it to be funny!


Golden Earrings by Belinda Alexander 
c/o NetGalley
I didn’t think I would like this book because I didn't know anything about the Spanish Civil War. I loved it, and I learned so much. I was constantly googling to find out more about the Spanish Civil War throughout the book. The past/present format is my favorite, and I loved both Evelina (past) and Paloma (present, though in this case present is 1975). The story was intriguing from the very beginning, and I loved that the book was centered around dancing (ballet and flamenco). The plot twists surprised me, and it didn't feel like I had read over 500 pages when I finished. In fact, I loved Paloma so much I could have kept reading! This book is definitely worth a read if you love historical fiction.


Saving Sophie by Ronald H. Balson
c/o NetGalley 
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I don't usually read books about the Middle East, but this one was suspenseful and interesting. The book starts out with a missing $88 million dollars in an embezzlement case and Jack Sommers as the main suspect. But why would someone who has never broken the law suddenly steal $88 million dollars? His daughter, Sophie, has been kidnapped by her grandparents and taken to Palestine. The story was intriguing from the very beginning, and I couldn't stop reading. I loved the characters, from Jack and Marcy to Catherine and Liam (I have been wanting to read Once We Were Brothers, and now it's moved higher on my to-read list!) I never expected to finish this book in one night, but that's exactly what happened.


Have you read anything good recently? I love book suggestions!

21 comments:

  1. Saving Sophie sounds so interesting! I'll definitely have to add it to my TBR list! Unlike you, I feel like I've been majorly slacking in the reading department lately! Hopefully, I'll get back on track soon.

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  2. I just added all of these to my goodreads, you have read some great books lately!

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  3. Definitely want to check out Golden Earrings! Thanks for sharing!

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  4. Saving Sophie sounds like a great book, adding it to my reading list. You did so much reading this summer! Great job. I only read two books, so bad I know.

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  5. Saving Sophie sounds SO good! Thanks for these recommendations!

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  6. I have seen A Window Opens everywhere this summer! I guess that means I need to read it?!

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  7. added all of these to my list (except for the 2 i have read). i hated the night circus, think i will like the book of speculation?

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  8. Oh WOW 32 books that's awesome! I haven't read any of these so I will have to check them out!

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  9. 32 books is amazing! I am so behind on my reading challenge it isn't funny. It looks like there are some really great books on this list I am going to have to add to my to-read list.

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  10. All of those books sound really good! I'm adding some to my reading list. I can't believe you read that many books this summer, I'm lucky to read one or two a month!

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  11. Beatriz Williams's books are now on my list! I'm also interested in Before We Were Strangers! Thanks for the recommendations. :)

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    1. Beatriz Williams is becoming one of my favorite authors! :)

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  12. You did awesome girl! I'm intrigued by The Flying Circus - that looks like a great read for my upcoming trips :)

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  13. I'm really interested in A window opens, glad to hear that you liked it!! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

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  14. I love your book reviews! I'm currently doing the "Around the World in 80 Books Challenge" and Saving Sophie sounds like a good one to add to my reading list. Cheers - Ellen | thecynicalsailor.blogspot.com

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  15. I absolutely love historical fiction.. I'll have to put Golden Earrings on my list =)

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    1. Historical fiction is my favorite genre too! :)

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  16. I haven't read any of these books but I definitely need to add these to my list! A Window Opens sounds good, definitely good to know it's not meant to be funny!
    <3, Pamela
    Sequins & Sea Breezes

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  17. Dang girl you are awesome!!! Tiny Little Thing sounds so good!! I love stuff based in the 1920's :) I need to get my book game going!!
    xo, Candace | Lovely Little Rants

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  18. Definitely adding a few of these to my to-read list :) I definitely want to branch out from WW2 historical fiction so Golden Earrings is definitely going on the list and Saving Sophie also looks really good :)

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