It is one of my most favorite days of the month…Book Club Day. I have loved reading for my entire life, and I love talking about books and choosing new books to read. I was the nerd in high school that joined a subscription book box before subscription boxes were all the rage. Ha ha! I would get 3-4 books delivered to me once a month, and I loved it. I just love to read. I am not super picky about genres because I have favorites in multiple genres. I tend to lean toward fiction more than nonfiction, but there are some nonfiction books I do love as well. Anyway, this month I actually read 2 books. Before I started with my book club pick, I read The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins. If you are a Hunger Games fan, this book is great. It is a prequel to The Hunger Games series and follows the early life of Coriolanus Snow well before he became the infamous President Snow. It was a great addition to the series, and I highly recommend it.
For the book club for July, I chose The Last Flight by Julie Clark. It is a psychological thriller of sorts that quickly captivated my attention. A chance meeting at the airport altered the course of two women’s lives forever. Both were trying to escape their troubled lives and saw an opportunity to create a whole new life and identity. Claire, the wife of a well-known philanthropist and son of a powerful senator, was trying to escape a life of verbal and physical abuse. Eva, a bright chemist who had been expelled from college, had been living her life in the drug ring making and selling drugs for a powerful drug lord. In a split second the two women decided to swap plane tickets and lives in the stall of an airport bathroom. Not giving each other many details of their current lives, Claire got on a plane headed to California while Eva got on a plane headed to Puerto Rico. Little did they know all that would lie ahead for them following the crash of the flight to Puerto Rico where no survivors were found. Nothing for either woman would ever be the same.
I really liked this story and it kept me on my toes guessing what was coming around each corner. The characters were very well developed, and I felt the anguish that led both women to the decision to begin a new life completely from scratch, as well as, the struggle for survival. It is a story of redemption that will tug at your heartstrings while also leaving you on the edge of your seat. Many people have compared it to Gone Girl. While I can see the similarities, I don’t feel like this one was as dark and sinister nor was it quite as shocking. However, I do think that if you were a fan of Gone Girl, you would be a fan of this novel as well. I wouldn’t say that I liked it as much as I liked Gone Girl, but I thought it was good. I give The Last Flight 4 out of 5 stars.
My pick for August is the highly anticipated, instant New York Times Best Seller, My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell. This is a story that echoes the current #MeToo movement and involves a young student who becomes involved in a relationship with her English teacher and the effect it has on her later in life. Here is what Apple Books has to say about this novel.
“We couldn’t stop thinking about Kate Elizabeth Russell’s powerful and deeply disturbing debut. Told from the point of view of its titular heroine, the novel maps two distinct areas of Vanessa’s life. We’re pulled into the thrill and turmoil of 15-year-old Vanessa’s experience as she embarks on a “romance” with her much older English teacher, Jacob, and grows to feel like he’s the only one who truly understands her. But adult Vanessa is starting to see the story differently, struggling to reconcile the relationship that altered the course of her life with the accusations of other former students who were targeted by Jacob. A palpable feeling of unease pervades Russell’s novel—she does an amazing job of trapping us inside Vanessa’s claustrophobic, traumatized mind. A vitally important read for the #MeToo age, My Dark Vanessacombines visceral detail with thoughtful nuance. Your book club will spend hours discussing this one.”
Will you come along and read with me?
Anchored in a Good Book,
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