Review: The Baker’s Man, Jennifer Moorman

I’m knee-deep in a feel-good reading kick. Give me all the warm fuzzies and happy endings.

So, The Baker’s Man was the PERFECT book to read on vacation last week. It hit all the sweet spots – small town, baking, but of magic, and a strong female lead finding her strength and voice.

As soon as I finished it, I immediately added all of Jennifer’s books to my TBR.

Review: Memphis by Tara Stringfellow

Is there anything better than a female multi-generational story? Nope.

I also loved how Memphis was a character crucial to the story. I’ve only seen Memphis through the eyes of a frequent visitor, but seeing it through the eyes of the North women gave me a whole new perspective for the city. There’s also just something extra special when you read a book set somewhere you know.

I loved diving deeper into each woman’s story – Hazel, Miriam, August, and Joan – but I’d love to get more of May’s story. There was so much complexity and beauty in her character that left me wanting to get to know her better.

My favorite part was seeing the community of support these women and their neighbors built for their daughters.

(TW: rape, racism, domestic violence)

Review: Love & Other Disasters, Anita Kelly

Friends … this book should’ve just been titled “Love” because it was just that good.

I loved the food and cooking show competition element. I loved London and their confidence and unfiltered belief in and love for themselves. I loved Dahlia and all of her disasters and clumsiness and vulnerability. I loved how fiercely they stood up for and protected each other.

The only thing I didn’t love? There simply wasn’t enough of Barbara. I adored her character and need more of her grandmothering. Please and thank you.

Just … yeah. I loved it.

Review: Razorblade Tears, S.A. Crosby

This book is the perfect example of why I love going into books completely blind. I knew NOTHING of the plot.

S.A. Crosby hooked me from page one. I was immediately intrigued. I found both Ike and Buddy Lee compelling and deeply flawed … and you know how much I adore flawed characters.

Then they brought in the MC, and it gave me Sons of Anarchy vibes (another favorite).

While the story had dark and violent elements, it was so much more than that. It was about growth, forgiveness, family, found family, and the deep-rooted injustices and inequities in America.

So, yeah, I loved it.

Review: This is What America Looks Like, Ilhan Omar

Like many progressive Americans, I’ve followed Representative Ilhan Omar’s political journey over the last few years, but I didn’t know much about her otherwise.

Her memoir should be required reading for everyone. She tells her story of growing up in Somalia, becoming a refuge, and immigrating to America. She’s a spitfire who has dedicated her life to fighting for human rights, democracy, and doing what’s right.

She narrates the audiobook, which I loved.

I can’t recommend this book enough.

Review: The London House, Katherine Reay

I truly have a soft spot for family secrets and complicated family dynamics. The London House did all of these and did them well. I was hooked from page one.

I usually LOVE dual timeline historical fiction. There’s just something magical about time-hopping.

But this one took a different approach that I just kinda liked. The past was told through letters and diary entries. Intriguing? Yes. But it was missing some of the magic.

All in, I thought this was a good book. If you enjoy WWII historical fiction centered on family secrets, I think you’ll enjoy this one.

Review: The Heart Principle, Helen Hoang

Wow. Just wow. I enjoyed Helen’s previous two books but this one was something else. I’m not quite finished processing it, but I felt every emotion reading The Heart Principle.

I truly related to Anna and her struggle to be understood and find her voice. It was so refreshing to read her voice.

Thank you, Helen, for writing this book.

Review: Serpent & Dove Trilogy, Shelby Mahurin

I started the Serpent & Dove Trilogy last Thursday and devoured it. I kind of wish I’d read it a bit slower so I could have made it last longer, but I just couldn’t stop.

I loved Lou and Reid and Ansel and Coco and lit everything about these books.

Fantasy isn’t usually a genre I gravitate towards but sometimes, it’s just what I need.

Review: The Giver of Stars, Jojo Moyes

I did not expect to love this book as much as I did … but it was amazing.

I was instantly captivated by the story and the characters, especially the way the women were portrayed. Alice and Margery were strong women, and even when they were literally knocked down, the still fought back.

It was refreshing and just the book to pull me out of a reading slump.

Review: Betty, Tiffany McDaniel

I can’t believe I let Betty sit on my shelf I read for so long. The prose was beautiful, and I instantly fell in love with Betty’s voice.

Her story, however, was gut-wrenching and heartbreaking. I wanted to hug every one of her siblings and her mom. I wanted to thank her dad for being a caring, loving father and keeping his family alive with his stories.

This book does contain several tough situations that could be triggering to some readers.