Here are reviews of some of the books I've read recently and loved:
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
This book has been out for over two years, but I thought it was time for me to read it. I absolutely loved it. It's two overlapping stories; one is of Leo, an old man from Poland, and one is of Alma, a young girl who lost her father when she was 7. Their lives are very different, but at the heart of each is a book called The History of Love. As Leo and Alma try to make sense of the mysteries in their lives, another one rises up around the book and they search for the clues to solve it. This book is so well-written, and the characters are quirky and real.
The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent
This is a book about the Salem Witch Trials, and one of the first women to be hanged for witchcraft. It's told from the perspective of the woman's daughter, who is as much involved in the trials as her mother is. Aside from the intriguing story and the great writing, I liked this book because it was not just about the drama of the trial. Equal weight is given to the witch hunt, the smallpox epidemic, the smallness of life in 17th-century America, and the burden of being the kind of girl who doesn't say and do the same things as other girls. Watch for this one in early September.
The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson
Young Adult Science Fiction
I had heard so many great things about this one that I had to read it. I didn't realize, though, that it was science fiction until about 25 pages in when there is mention of a pandemic and a huge earthquake in California. It's about Jenna Fox, who wakes from a coma to find that she has lost a year of her life and all memory from the time before it. As her memory slowly returns and she tries to recover her relationships with her family, she finds that she is not quite like other people in a few unpredictable ways. She has memories she shouldn't, and can't access the ones she should. As her recovery progresses, questions of bioethics, identity, and humanity arise.
What I'm reading now (and really liking):
Ghostwalk by Rebecca Stott
3 days ago