April 2017 Reads

Monday, May 8, 2017

I read some really good books in April, and all three books were so very different.  I sometimes go through reading slumps where I won't read anything for a week or two and then I sometimes find books where I cannot put them down.  I read one of those books in April, and it was one that I wasn't expecting to like!

To see my past book reviews, click here!

 "Amsterdam, 1943. Hanneke spends her days procuring and delivering sought-after black market goods to paying customers, her nights hiding the true nature of her work from her concerned parents, and every waking moment mourning her boyfriend, who was killed on the Dutch front lines when the Germans invaded. She likes to think of her illegal work as a small act of rebellion.

On a routine delivery, a client asks Hanneke for help. Expecting to hear that Mrs. Janssen wants meat or kerosene, Hanneke is shocked by the older woman's frantic plea to find a  person-a Jewish teenager Mrs. Janssen had been hiding, who has vanished without a trace from a secret room. Hanneke initially wants nothing to do with such dangerous work, but is ultimately drawn into a web of mysteries and stunning revelations that lead her into the heart of the resistance, open her eyes to the horrors of the Nazi war machine, and compel her to take desperate action."

This is the book that I could not put down!  It's different than any other Holocaust book I've read in that the narrator is not Jewish, so it's a very interesting point of view.  Her life is affected by what Hitler is doing in Poland, but the reader gets a peak into what life was like for the non-Jew during WWII.  This is a young adult novel, but everyone will love it no matter your age!

 "At the turn of the twentieth century, in a rural stretch of the Pacific Northwest, a reclusive orchardist, William Talmadge, tends to apples and apricots as if they were loved ones. A gentle man, he's found solace in the sweetness of the fruit he grows and the quiet, beating heart of the land he cultivates. One day, two teenage girls appear and steal his fruit at the market; they later return to the outskirts of his orchard to see the man who gave them no chase.
Feral, scared, and very pregnant, the girls take up on Talmadge's land and indulge in his deep reservoir of compassion. Just as the girls begin to trust him, men arrive in the orchard with guns, and the shattering tragedy that follows will set Talmadge on an irrevocable course not only to save and protect them but also to reconcile the ghosts of his own troubled past.
Transcribing America as it once was before railways and roads connected its corners, Amanda Coplin weaves a tapestry of solitary souls who come together in the wake of unspeakable cruelty and misfortune. She writes with breathtaking precision and empathy, and in The Orchardist she crafts an astonishing debut novel about a man who disrupts the lonely harmony of an ordered life when he opens his heart and lets the world in."

This novel was a little heavier and sad to me.  The main character, Talmadge, is lovable and so my heart hurt when I felt like he wasn't treated fairly.  This book is pretty thick, so keep that in mind.  Overall, I enjoyed it but it wasn't my favorite this month  (see above ha).

"Four lives knit together… 
There's a little yarn store in Seattle called A Good Yarn. It's owned by Lydia Hoffman, and it represents her dream of a new beginning, a life free from cancer. A life that offers a chance at love… 
Lydia teaches knitting to beginners, and the first class is How to Make a Baby Blanket. Three women join. Jacqueline Donovan disapproves of the woman married to her only son, but knitting a baby blanket would be a gesture of reconciliation. 
For Carol Girard, the baby blanket brings a message of hope as she and her husband make a final attempt to conceive. 
And tough-looking Alix Townsend (that's Alix with an i) is learning to knit her blanket for a court-ordered community service project. 
These four very different women, brought together by the age-old craft of knitting, make unexpected discoveries—about themselves and each other. Discoveries that lead to friendship and acceptance, to laughter and dreams. Discoveries only women can share…"

This was Emily's recommendation to me, and although it took me a while to get into the book, I found myself rooting for all of the characters in very different ways.  I found myself really drawn to each character in a different way.  Each chapter is told from a different character's point of view, and I really enjoy books that do that!  This book is part of a really large series.

Linking up with Biana


  1. I LOVE The Girl in the Blue Coat!! Speaking of which, I just was looking for it last week in my classroom library, and it is missing! Someone must have loved it so much they wanted to keep it!! OR it's stuck at the bottom of someone's locker!

  2. Thanks for these great reviews - going to pick a couple up and oh my gosh one more season of friends - I didnt hear that!! I did see will and grace is coming back for one more season. xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

  3. I am thinking I need to read girl in the coat!!

  4. I need to go get a book. Like you - I will read, read, read, and then stop and be like wait, I need a book! Currently, I have been on a Netflix binge that is warping my brain LOL! Have a great week and YESSSS FRIENDS!

  5. First of all, what, what and what? How did I not know that about friends. I've prayed they would at least have a reunion but an entire season? This made my Monday, ha ha and I always look so forward to your reviews. I read a lot of Debbie's books but have not read that one yet. Have a wonderful Monday sweetie!

  6. Great recommendations! I will add those to my reading list! Thank you for linking up with us!

  7. The Girl in the Blue Coat sounds really good! I can't wait to read it this summer! Cheers, Laura

  8. Debbie Downer for your Monday right here, hand raised. The Friends reunion was a hoax. I was flipping out and texting everyone when I first saw the "Fall 2018" announcement..then I started hearing and seeing all the "it's not real" posts. Such a bummer!!

  9. I will have to add Girl in the Blue Coat to my to-reads list. Jess at Just Jess

  10. Girl in the Blue Coat is going on my wish list now! That sounds great.

  11. The friends thing is a fake! It was made by a fake David Schwimmer account! :(

  12. I remember listening to the Shop on Blossom Street several years ago on an audiobook and really enjoying it-I may have to pull it back out now!

    xoxo, SS


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