A Month in Books: September

I love September. It always feels more “New Years-y” to me than January. Maybe it’s because there’s more noticeable changes: weather changes, leaves turning color, college kids inundating the city of Boston again…

It’s a great time to rediscover hot tea, soft blankets and that spot on the couch that you love so much.

Links take you to my full reviews on Goodreads.com.
 Out Stealing Horses, Per Petterson (trans. Anne Born)

4 stars
Trond Sander moves back to the country and relives a pivotal summer from his youth. Set in contemporary times and the days following WWII, this beautifully atmospheric novel packs a wallop.

Matched (Matched #1), Ally Condie
1 star
Reads like a poorly written and uninspired mash-up of the Giver and Hunger Games. A few moment of true poeticism in the book save it from being an all-together waste of time. I won’t read the rest of the series.

Blood, Bones & Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef, Gabrielle Hamilton
4 stars
Loved reading Hamilton’s crazy story of how she became a chef and opened the wildly successful restaurant Prune in NYC. Well-written food memoirs are a fast-growing sub-genre and this is one of the best.

Where Shadows Dance (Sebastian St. Cyr #6), C.S. Harris
3 stars
Not my favorite in the series, but a solid book. The impending wedding between St. Cyr and Hero overshadows the mystery. Also getting annoyed by St. Cyr’s refusal to GET OVER IT in regards to family and father.

The Invisible Bridge, Julie Orringer
3 stars
Deeply fascinating retelling of the story of Hungarian Jews in WWII.  Could have been shorter and with less melodrama. The actual historical events are dramatic enough without the added pathos.

One Was A Soldier (Clare Fergusson & Russ Van Alstyne #7), Julia Spencer-Fleming
4 stars
I love Russ & Clare, so when this installment focused on Clare’s self-destructive behavior after coming back from Iraq, I could barely read it. So gut-wrenching. Still some of the best character dialog I’ve ever read.

The China Study, T. Colin Campbell and Thomas M. Campbell II
2 stars
The first 10 pages had me hooked and then the authors slowly lost me over the next 100. By page 150 I’d had enough of bad science, conspiracy theories, and self-aggrandizement to last a lifetime.  Could’ve been great, but let’s face it: rats are not humans. Until the studies can be replicated on people, any outcomes are correlations, not causation.


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