What I Read This Week: September 12,2021
Due to a technology glitch, my scheduled post didn’t publish yesterday. Instead of skipping this update, I figured I’d give it to you a day late!
I finished four books this week and they were all pretty enjoyable. Here’s a rundown:
Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Isihuro
This is my book club’s September pick so I don’t want to give much of my opinions yet. It’s the story of Klara, and Artificial Friend, who ends up with a teenager named Josie. Klara learns and adapts, to be the best friend she can to Josie and prevent her from being lonely. This is a story about family and loyalty that explores the roles Artificial Intelligence could have in human lives. I recommend this one for readers of literary fiction, particularly those with an interest in AI.
Know My Name by Chanel Miller
This is a powerful memoir written by a sexual assault victim. During the very public trial, she was known as Emily Doe and in this book, Chanel forces the reader to know not only her name but her identity beyond that of a victim. I avoided this book for a long time because I thought it would be too heavy and emotional. Now I’m regretting not reading it sooner because it’s incredibly well written and ultimately has a positive tone. Chanel takes us into what the daily life is like for a victim of sexual assault, from the moment she wakes up after the assault all the way through the trial and sentencing of her abuser. I thought I knew what victims went through but I truly had no idea. This book should serve as a wake up call to the justice system and victims advocates. It also begs us as a society to place blame where it deserves, on the rapists and their behavior, and no where else. I highly recommend this book for all humans!
Steal My Magnolia by Karla Sorensen
Book three in the Love At First Sight series, which is a spin-off from the Winston Brothers series by Penny Reid. I enjoyed this a lot more than the last book in the series but it’s still not nearly as good as the first one was. Grady is finally struck by his “family curse” and falls in love with Magnolia when he first sets eyes on her. The only problem is she the ex of his sister’s beau, so that makes things a little awkward! What I enjoyed most about this story was the character development. Both Grady and Magnolia grow a lot individually as people throughout the book, but Magnolia is a particularly great heroine. She is determined to create a life for herself on her own terms so she isn’t thrilled about Grady’s “curse” playing a role in their relationship. This novel has some great humor and even better sexual tension! I recommend it for readers of romance, but start with the first book in the series.
Feral Creatures by Kira Jane Buxton
This is the sequel to Hollow Kingdom, which I read back in 2019 and absolutely loved. This new installment didn’t land the same way with me, mainly because it’s about a virus that wipes out humans and…well…you know… This one might be as good as the first but I can’t tell because I simply don’t like the premise that much anymore. Here we reunite with S.T. (short for Shit Turd) a smart mouthed crow who is our narrator through this world that is now void of humans. The animal characters are well constructed, and the world they live in is brought to life with vivid imagery. And with all that being said, I don’t think I would have enjoyed it nearly as much if I hadn’t listened to the audio book. Narrator Robert Petkoff brings the characters alive with personality and snark. This is another story of survival and belonging but also about love and learning to let go. I recommend it for readers of literary fiction, especially dystopian stories, but you absolutely must read Hollow Kingdom first.