Lost Roses (by Martha Hall Kelly) … an amazing story of amazing women

The prequel to Lilac Girls was an interesting read. It was a little slow start for me, but I finally was sucked into the story and could not put it down. I love Martha Hall Kelly’s historical fiction and am looking forward to her next book. I’m already anxiously waiting for the opportunity to devour the next Woolsey tale.

What a captivating story of life during the Bolshevik revolution. You will travel from the US to Russia to Paris…entrenched in the horrors of the Great War and the lives affected by war, atrocities, and many dangers. There are moments of holding your breath as you wait to discover what will happen next. There are many threads woven throughout the pages…love, loss, loyalty, faith, hope, altruism, danger, selfishness.

I am not as familiar with the First World War but the author does a great job of making you experience the emotions from the various corners of the world. The chapters of this book are presented from the viewpoint of three main characters. And the stories flow smoothly as you discover the richly drawn aspects of their lives and how they end up colliding in an astonishing way. You will be cheering on some of the characters while wishing others would meet with an unfortunate ending. Either way, you will be deeply invested in the story.

Thank you to NetGalley, Martha Hall Kelly, and Random House for an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

Where the Crawdads Sing (by Delia Owens) … resiliency and strength amid nature and loneliness

I really enjoyed this book. What an amazing story of a coming-of-age young girl. Kya is abandoned by her entire family over a period of several years. But her resiliency and strength were impressive. Between the pages of this awesome book is a tale of survival, hope, racism, loneliness, love, and anger.

This book is a wonderful story woven with poetry, emotions, nature, and breathtaking beauty. At one point I truly gasped because I thought something had happened that I was not ready to accept. But luckily, it was just a twist to keep you flipping through the pages as fast as possible.

I promise that you will want to read through to the last page, the last word, the last expression of enlightenment. You will not be disappointed!

Killing the Rising Sun (by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard) … the real details of the Pacific conflict and the horrors

This was another wonderful book in the “killing” series by Bill O’Reilly. I enjoyed this book. It was a learning experience for me. I knew of the atomic bombings in Japan, but I didn’t know all of the background and behind the scenes information of WWII and the Pacific conflict.

The authors do a great job of providing details but also bringing a sympathetic and human side to the story. They encourage the reader to visit the memorials and museums…something I would love to do if given the opportunity. I feel it is important to learn the truth about the horrific events of the past in order that they not be repeated.

I have enjoyed all of the books I’ve read in this series. This one did not disappoint. I am glad Bill O’Reilly has taken on the task of bringing various aspects of history to light and presents it so that we can learn and grow with the knowledge.

Knit Two (by Kate Jacobs) … knitting together the story of the lives and experiences of a wonderful group of women

I started reading this book and initially had trouble getting into it. But when I picked it back up in a couple of weeks, I was sucked into the story and couldn’t put the book down. The relationships of the Friday Night Knitting Club have changed since Georgia’s death. And her daughter, Dakota, has grown up and is maturing into a strong, decisive young woman.

As you continue to learn about the individuals that are part of the knitting club, you are drawn into more aspects of their lives…both present day and past. You are cheering them on, caring about their lives and how they are developing into the person they were meant to be, and crying as they endure various challenges. The story of the Friday Night Knitting Club will take you to Europe and you’ll fall in love with Marco and Roberto.

I can’t wait to start the third and final book in the series, Knit the Season.

61 Hours (by Lee Child) … it felt more like 61 days!

I have to say this was not one of my favorite Jack Reacher books. The story line was not one that was well-written and the fact that you know who the assassin is from the beginning, kind of ruined it for me. I agree with another reviewer that at least Lee Child tries a new aspect with each book and at least keeps things fresh and interesting.

Essentially, the story drags on and it really seemed to take 61 days instead of 61 hours. But, I’ve enjoyed the other books in the series, so I’ll definitely continue reading them.

Gone Tomorrow (by Lee Child) … a nail-biting read

Another Jack Reacher book has you waiting for a resolution.

I enjoyed this book. The end of each chapter has you ready to turn the page and start the next one. The story is exciting and compelling and an absolute page turner. You just never know which character is one you can trust or which one you should avoid at all costs. Reacher’s sense of justice is uncompromisable and something you respect in him. While he may be physically strong, he is also one smart cookie! His brain just works in a unique way.

Thank you, Lee Child, for continuing to keep me guessing and wondering what will happen by the end of the book!

The Escape (by David Baldacci) … edge of your seat intrigue

I enjoyed this third book in the John Puller series by David Baldacci. And this one deals with John Puller’s brother, Robert. You will be sitting on the edge of your seat, chewing your nails, and waiting for what will happen the next second.

From the very first chapter, you are hooked into the story. I am a huge David Baldacci fan and he continues to hit it out of the park with this series. There is suspense, intrigue, danger, excitement, fear…and the reader is hanging onto every word.

I can’t wait for the next book in the series! David Baldacci, please keep up the wonderful weaving of stories!