What I've Been Reading - May 2017

Tuesday, May 30, 2017
Welcome to What I've Been Reading, where I share my (quick and personal) thoughts on what I've been reading this past month. For specifics (plot summary, etc.) about each book, click on the provided links.

A Gentleman in Moscow: A Novelby Amor Towles (5 stars)

This was one of those books that, immediately after finishing, I wanted to start over and read it again. In fact, immediately after finishing the copy I borrowed from the library, I bought my own copy, so I could do just that. I loved this book. The story and the writing equally deserve five stars. One of my favorites this year.

The Chilbury Ladies' Choir: A Novelby Jennifer Ryan (3.5 stars)

This book was a little slow for me in the beginning, but once I got into it, I really enjoyed it. It has two of my favorite things...Historical fiction and WWII.

Alexander Hamiltonby Ron Chernow (4 stars)
My husband has been listening to Broadway's Hamilton soundtrack on repeat for quite a while now. He loves it. I know if the opportunity arises, we will definitely be seeing the show. Before doing so, in typical fashion, I had to read the book that inspired the play, so I did. Clocking in at over 700 pages, it was not a quick read, yet it was! I flew through it. Hamilton's life was fascinating.

Brown Girl Dreamingby Jacqueline Woodson (4.5 stars)
This is one of those books I will be recommending to everyone. I loved it! I'm trying to come up with the perfect words to describe my love for it, but I can't. I just loved it! These words aren't perfect, but let's try beautiful, poignant, heart-breaking, heart-warming, timely and moving. Please read it. (I listened to this one as well as read it. I recommend doing the same.)

A Bridge Across the Oceanby Susan Meissner (3 stars)
I had no idea what I was getting into when starting this book. (I almost never read a book's synopsis if it has been recommended to me by a trusted source.) Well, a few pages in, I almost abandoned it. I won't tell why, (spoiler!) but I'm glad I didn't. Though I didn't give it four or five stars, it was an enjoyable read and definitely worth my time.

Piecing Me Togetherby Renee Watson (3.5 stars)
I have gone back and forth a dozen times with my rating on this one. Covers shouldn't factor into ratings, but I love this cover! It is beautiful. The story is beautiful as well. I am not a huge fan of YA, so perhaps that is why my rating isn't as high. I'm not sure, but I highly recommend this YA book to everyone! A timely read.

Station Elevenby Emily St. John Mandel (2.5 stars)
For such a loved book, my 2.5 stars seems wrong, but this was simply a case of great book/wrong audience. The writing was great. The storytelling was great. The story just wasn't for me. If you love dystopian books, I think you will love this. It is one of the best I've read.

The Noble Servantby Melanie Dickerson (3 stars)
Sweet and simple read. Perhaps a little too sweet and simple, but it was the perfect palate cleanser for me after reading Station Eleven.

My Name Is Lucy Barton: A Novelby Elizabeth Strout (2.5 stars)
This was another case of great book/wrong audience. I loved the writing, but hated the story. As an HSP, (Highly Sensitive Person) it was too much for me. If you can handle its difficult subject matter, I recommend it. 

Make sure to check out what MMD has been reading lately!


  1. I can't wait to read A Gentleman in Moscow, I'm still on hold I should get it in a couple of weeks. I loved My Name is Lucy Barton, and Brown Girl Dreaming was amazing.

    1. I can't wait to hear what you think about A Gentleman in Moscow. Definitely one of my favorite reads this year.

  2. I listened to the audiobook of A Gentleman in Moscow and really enjoyed it, though at times it seemed to drag a bit (it is a long book!). I had not read any historical fiction set in Russia so it was great to read about the affects of the Bolshevik's reign. I am glad you mentioned that there are some tough subject matters in My Name is Lucy Barton. As a fellow HSP, I might have to rethink whether to keep it on my TBR . And Brown Girl Dreaming was awesome, especially as an audiobook (read by the author!)

    1. I don't think I've ever read any historical fiction set in Russia before either. A Gentleman in Moscow definitely left me wanting more. Thanks for comment!