What I Read This Week: March 27, 2022

Thanks to March Madness, I haven’t been reading as much but I did manage to get four books finished this week.

The Lifeguards by Amanda Eyre Ward

Thriller/Contemporary fiction

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Advanced copy from NetGalley, expected publication April 5, 2022. This book was not what I was expecting, based on the blurb. I thought it was going to be dramatic “chick lit” but it was practically a thriller, and I enjoyed every minute of it. At the very start, we know something bad has happened in this idyllic rich neighborhood. Then the narrative backs up and gives us glimpses into what lead up to the crime, alternating with what’s going on at the current time. We get the perspective of three different moms whose teen boys are somehow involved. We also get narrative from some of the side characters as well as text transcripts, online posts, and other formats that help us put the pieces together. While the main focus of the book is about the crime, it also explores the opiate addiction and class dynamics. While all the characters weren’t likable, they were well developed. The writing is sharp and I could clearly imagine this neighborhood and nearby greenway. I highly recommend it for readers of contemporary fictions as well as thrillers. 

Kissing Galileo by Penny Reid

New adult romance

Rating: 2 out of 5.

This was a meh read. While it had some funny parts and meaningful moments, I found it too similar to the previous book in the series. A professor dating his student just doesn’t sit well with me, so perhaps I’m just not the target audience for this book! I did like the way the author handled body positivity and body image issues with both characters. But this was a miss for me and I can’t recommend it.

The Unsinkable Greta James by Jennifer E. Smith

Contemporary fiction

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This was a lovely read all the way around. I’ve seen it labeled as a romance novel and it definitely isn’t one, though there is a romantic element. This is a story about grief, and the different ways that shows up for people. Greta and her dad are both struggling to figure out how to move on without her mom. The setting of an Alaskan cruise was thoroughly enjoyable. I loved all the nature descriptions, and the setting provided humorous moments as well. I highly recommend this one for readers of contemporary fiction.

The Verifiers by Jane Pek

Mystery/Audiobook

Rating: 3 out of 5.

I had high expectations for this one and they weren’t met. Overall it was a fine read, very interesting and thought provoking. However I found it a bit too long and rambling in the middle. I thought things had been resolved and then there turned out to be three hours of book left! I do really like the premise of a detective agency that investigates peoples’ online personas. There was a lot to think about there in terms of honesty and safety. I found the audiobook narrator a bit bland and have heard better reviews from friends who read the physical copy so I recommend that format (physical) for readers of mysteries and technology based stories.

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