March Reads and Reviews

Back again today as promised to share all of the books that I read in March. There have been some really good ones, and some that I didn't even make it through. It's also interesting to me that I read a few different genres- mystery/thriller, memoir, romance, and screenplay. Got to switch things up!  I would love to hear what you're reading as well- please give me suggestions! 

Now- on to the books.

The Turn of the Key
When she stumbles across the ad, she’s looking for something else completely. But it seems like too good an opportunity to miss—a live-in nannying post, with a staggeringly generous salary. And when Rowan Caine arrives at Heatherbrae House, she is smitten—by the luxurious “smart” home fitted out with all modern conveniences, by the beautiful Scottish Highlands, and by this picture-perfect family. What she doesn’t know is that she’s stepping into a nightmare—one that will end with a child dead and herself in prison awaiting trial for murder.

This was chosen as my first book club selection, and I devoured it immediately. One of my favorite genres is mystery, and I loved trying to figure out what was happening during this book. I also enjoyed the writing style and could picture myself hanging out in the house where the story took place. I think this would make for an interesting movie! I know one complaint that I've heard from my book club is that the ending didn't really make sense with the rest of the book and left things unanswered, but I kind of liked how it tied everything up with a simple answer (and also made me feel less spoiler but hopefully that makes sense if you read the book!)

Rating - 4/5

The Friend Zone

Kristen Petersen doesn't do drama, will fight to the death for her friends, and has no room in her life for guys who just don't get her. She's also keeping a big secret: facing a medically necessary procedure that will make it impossible for her to have children. Planning her best friend's wedding is bittersweet for Kristen—especially when she meets the best man, Josh Copeland. He's funny, sexy, never offended by her mile-wide streak of sarcasm, and always one chicken enchilada ahead of her hangry. Even her dog, Stuntman Mike, adores him. The only catch: Josh wants a big family someday. Kristen knows he'd be better off with someone else, but as their attraction grows, it's harder and harder to keep him at arm's length.

Jessie recommended this book to me when I said I wanted a few rom-com books to read and this was my favorite out of them. I absolutely loved the writing style and everything felt realistic. The characters were great, the dialogue was clever, and the story line kept flipping and switching. I was left guessing what would happen the entire time! It was also a different subject matter than what is usually discussed in romance novels which made it more emotional (especially for me who's dealt with similar issues!). Highly recommend if you're looking for an easy read that's not all fluff (or too vulgar!)

Rating - 5/5

Dare Me
Addy Hanlon has always been Beth Cassidy's best friend and trusted lieutenant. Beth calls the shots and Addy carries them out, a long-established order of things that has brought them to the pinnacle of their high-school careers. Now they're seniors who rule the intensely competitive cheer squad, feared and followed by the other girls—until the young new coach arrives.

Unfortunately this was a book that I had to abandon halfway through. I was interested in the plot since it's a TV show now (on USA Network so I'm not able to watch) and I like a good mystery/drama book. But I couldn't get into the writing style and all of the characters were awful people. It took high school drama to a new level and I couldn't finish it.

Rating - 1/5

Full Circle
She grew up in front of the world on the beloved sitcom Full House, but then actress Andrea Barber abruptly left Hollywood. Why did she leave and what did she do for twenty years out of the spotlight before returning to television? This is her funny and inspiring memoir of fame, heartache, resilience--and the reboot of a lifetime . . .

I feel so conflicted about this book- as an avid fan of Full House growing up and an excited watcher of Fuller House as an adult, I was really excited to read a memoir written by one of the actresses. After listening to Andrea speak on one of my favorite podcasts (Ali on the Run!), I was even more excited to read this book. For the most part, it did live up to those expectations and offered an interesting glimpse into life in Hollywood, then out of Hollywood, then back in Hollywood.

The part I'm conflicted about is that the middle section just felt like it dragged on. I appreciate what Andrea is doing with making anxiety be less stigmatized and explaining what it feels like for her and how it affected her life, but for me it felt like explaining the same thing over and over. I wish that some of those parts were shortened a bit or brought in new aspects, which is my only complaint about the book.

Rating - 3/5

State of the Union
Tom and Louise meet in a pub before their couple's therapy appointment. Married for years, they thought they had a stable home life--until a recent incident pushed them to the brink. Going to therapy seemed like the perfect solution. But over drinks before their appointment, they begin to wonder: what if marriage is like a computer? What if you take it apart to see what's in there, but then you're left with a million pieces? Unfolding in the minutes before their weekly therapy sessions, the ten-chapter conversation that ensues is witty and moving, forcing them to look at their marriage--and, for the first time in a long time, at each other.

An interesting and quick read, which was in a format suited for TV (which is what eventually happened!) Although the dialogue was pleasant and clever, it seemed like there were so many holes in the story and I was left guessing what the past and present held.

Most of the chapter was just trying to figure out where the marriage stood and who was talking, and by the time I was caught up they were knocking on the therapist's door to start their session and end the chapter! I also wanted to know what happened to the other two couples who were mentioned in the book! Overall, a nice and quick read, but too thin on plot.

Rating - 3/5

What are you reading lately?


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