More of What You’re Reading this Summer

We are half way through the Adult Summer Reading Challenge and the great reviews keep coming in. Here is a small selection of the latest thoughtful critiques by participants. Take a look at what your fellow readers are enjoying. Thanks to all of those who have submitted reviews so far and stay tuned for more reviews to come.

An Untamed Land by Lauraine Snelling (Reviewed by Karen S.)

This book is the first in a series about a family of Norwegian immigrants to the Dakota Territory in the 1880’s. You get a real feel for what it was like for these settlers. The author did a great job of detailing their trials and triumphs in the new land. It is hard to put down these books. I really enjoyed reading about the day-to-day challenges that faced these characters. As I read this and the following stories in the series, I look forward to seeing how these families survive.

Boy Meets Girl by Meg Cabot (Reviewed by Anastasia B.)

Kate Mackenzie has had a lot of bad luck lately: she broke up with her boyfriend who refuses to commit, she has nowhere to live (except her friends couch) and her horrible boss is forcing her to fire one of the most well liked people in the company. Now the fired employee is suing and Kate is right in the middle and is getting closer and closer to her defense attorney. When Kate is fired for telling the truth, which paints her boss in the wrong, her friends rally around her. This book is written as a series of emails, instant messages, journal entries, and phone messages. I didn’t think I would like this style of writing, but it was surprisingly good. This book has made me want to read more from Meg Cabot.

The Myth of Choice by Kent Greenfield (Reviewed by Cynthia W.)

This is a really great non-fiction choice for book discussion groups. The author, a law professor, elaborates on the ideas of free choice, consent, voluntary action and the many legal political and social issues that turn upon these concepts. The history of the development of these ideas in America is explored; the various sides of each debate are explained. Later chapters are devoted to developing personal strategies and considerations for better decision making, ideas for utilizing natural tendencies in public policy and suggestions for helping young people become more aware decision makers. The book is well written for a lay audience and is relatively free of legal jargon. The nuances of closely related terms and concepts are clearly delineated but the language does not come across as overly scholarly or stuffy. 

Shine by Lauren Myracle (Reviewed by Darcia R.)

Shine is the story of a hate crime in a small town. It is told from the perspective of the victim’s best friend as she tries to figure out who hurt her friend. The author does a good job with the character descriptions. By the end you even feel a connection with the bad guys. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a compelling story of friendship.

The White Mary: A Novel by Kira Salak (Reviewed by Ellen S.)

The White Mary by Kira Salak is at once an intense adventure, a romantic travelogue and a study of the characters of the four main players in this epic novel. Set in Papua New Guinea, “White Mary” is pidgin for a white woman, in this case journalist Marika Veccara, who is searching for the Pulitzer prize winning foreign correspondent Robert Lewis. Getting to know and appreciate Merika, her lover Sebastian, her obsession Robert Lewis and her native guide is a large part of the enjoyment I got from this excellent book. I highly recommend it!

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