Having stockpiled a To Be Read pile, April saw me making a decent dent in it.
Grown Ups by Marion Keyes: The story is set between the three Casey brothers and their families. The reader realises early on that what’s happening behind closed doors is in complete contrast to the lives presented to the outside world. It’s funny, heart warming and heart breaking, all rolled into one.
The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah: I saw this recommended on a bookish blog recently and was drawn to it because I’d loved The Great Alone. In all honesty, I nearly up after the first chapter because it was just … dull. Not that there is anything wrong with the beginning – I just found it hard going. However, in the end, I was glad I stuck with it because the story turned out to be absolutely unforgettable. Vianne and Isabelle are living in France during WWII, and they both fight to survive in different ways. I laughed, I cheered, I gasped, I cried … it was an emotional reading experience, to say the least! This was a riveting and heartbreaking read. A contender for my best of 2020 list.
The Switch by Beth O’Leary: O’Leary’s debut novel made it onto my Favourite Reads of 2019 list and I was concerned that The Switch find itself wanting in comparison. It didn’t. The characters were warm and witty, and the story itself was heartwarming, compassionate and uplifting. I enjoyed it so much, it didn’t matter that I guessed where the plot was going to end up.
The Two Lives of Lydia Bird by Josie Silver: Silver’s previous novel also made my Favourite Reads of 2019 list, so I was hopeful this would be of the same calibre. The concept of Lydia Bird was interesting, but I didn’t really feel any connection to our heroine. Her grief and dilemma seemed so unemotional to me. The time jumps in the story made it hard to be invested in the story and gave it an odd pacing. That said, I thought the premise was enjoyable and wanted to see how it would all work out in the end. But it was just missing that certain spark and I guessed the ending.