Mini Reviews 11

The Devil and Miss Prym – Paulo Coelho

The Devil and Miss Prym

I’ve only read one of Paulo Coelho’s books before, The Alchemist. I really disliked that novel because I’m not a huge fan of philosophy or spiritual books. However, there were a couple more books that sounded interesting by Paulo Coelho, so I decided to add them to my TBR. I did enjoy The Devil and Miss Prym more than I did The Alchemist, but I still wouldn’t classify it as a book that I liked. There were some beautiful passages, and a few things the characters said really spoke to me, but overall, it was a strange novel. I did enjoy the setting however. There was something really beautiful in the descriptions of the small town where this book takes place. I think if you enjoyed The Alchemist, you’ll enjoy this novel too.

The Shining Girls – Lauren Beukes

The Shining Girls

I made a huge mistake listening to this book on audio. I’ve been hearing amazing things about this novel as well as Lauren Beukes’ latest book, Broken Monsters. The problem with the audio was that I absolutely despised the male narrators, and if you dislike the narrator, it sort of ruins the book for you. The story itself is unique and I haven’t read any novels about a time travelling serial killer before. Some of the scenes are very graphic, and sometimes the story is hard to follow (though that could have been a side product of the audio book again). The book is very dark, and the language and choice of words is suitably graphic and violent. I actually liked all the characters, except Harper of course. I felt like I had to know what was going to happen next, and the climax of the novel was great. I recommend the novel for those that like dark, graphic books about murder, but I don’t recommend the audiobook at all.

Beware That Girl – Teresa Toten

Beware That Girl

I’m still not sure how I feel about this book, but the longer I think about it, the more I realize I didn’t enjoy it. I liked the character of Kate, but I despised Olivia. Kate always seemed so tough and sure of herself. Olivia drove me nuts almost immediately. The plot is also a let down. This book was marketed as a thriller, and I would not classify it like that. I don’t know what this book is, but it’s not a thriller. There were some characters that I thought were caricatures and I found myself having to suspend disbelief over and over again. It’s a ridiculous story with ridiculous characters. There are parts that are unsettling and deeply disturbed me, but there’s really nothing likeable or redeeming about this novel. I don’t recommend it at all.

Columbine – Dave Cullen

Columbine

This is an incredibly well-researched novel. I learned so much about the Columbine shooting after reading it. I was quite young when it happened and I never understood the magnitude of the effect of Columbine. I felt so heartsick while reading this book because I can’t imagine the fear and the panic this community went through. I also learned a lot about Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris and their families. I never felt any sympathy for the shooters, but I did for their families and friends. I can’t imagine the hate they must have received after all this happened. Unfortunately, Eric and Dylan have left a terrible legacy, but this book discussed everything related to them and how they came to do such an atrocious thing. This novel is powerful and moving. I teared up multiple times while reading it. Highly recommended.

Dark Places – Gillian Flynn

Dark Places Unfortunately, this book was not as enjoyable as Gone Girl. Gillian Flynn’s sharp and acerbic writing is still on point, but even though the characters were as richly complex as the characters in Gone Girl, I hated them all. I couldn’t stand Libby or any of the members of her family. Lyle amused me at times, but there was nothing redeeming about any of them. They were all such liars and terrible human beings. However, the plot was riveting  and I didn’t see the end coming at all. Gillian Flynn created another incredible book, but I don’t think she’ll ever be able to top the genius that is Gone Girl.

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