Book Reviews (Part I)

Ghosted, Rosie Walsh (July Book of the Month)

Rating: 4 stars

Mood: Light, Intrigue

Would Recommend?: Yes

Wine Pairing: Rose (Barefoot Pink Moscato)

Summary Sarah and Eddie meet while they are both out for a walk and start a beautiful relationship for one week, just one week, but they’ve fallen for each other hard. But then, suddenly, Eddie stops responding to Sarah’s messages. He unfriends her on Facebook. Someone makes a mysterious call to Sarah’s phone warning her to stay away from him. What went wrong? What did Sarah do to deserve this? In addition, we learn very early on that there was a terrible car accident in which Sarah lost her sister. We don’t know the details of the accident, and throughout the book little hints are dropped. {Potential spoiler sentence} The book is divided into three parts, the first two are narrated by Sarah and the last is narrated by Eddie.

What I didn’t like I am starting with what I didn’t like because I finished this book and I just needed to find somebody to discuss it with. Fortunately I had the ladies of the Bad on Paper Podcast to listen to and give me some closure. (Warning: That episode contains spoilers). So here’s the thing: I thought because I was power reading, I was missing little hints that you normally find in a mystery novel. However, it would appear that I am not the only one. So now I’m here wondering what the author did or didn’t tell us. I am also wondering if there was misleading information that sent me towards a path that I didn’t particularly enjoy.

What I did like I cannot put this book into any specific genre, and I love that. The fact that Walsh wrote a novel that cannot be easily characterized proves that she has a creative mind. I also enjoyed how the story unfolded. There was always more information on the horizon, and that kept me intrigued in the book. I liked that it was a romance novel that didn’t center around the couple falling in love or making love. It was more about how their lives moved alongside one another, and a lot about Sarah’s life specifically.

Other Notes When I sit down to rate a book that I really liked, I think about how realistic the book was and how consistent the book was before anything else. I try to decide if I think that it could have happened in real life, and the answer is an honest yes. I have seen several reviews that claim the book is very unrealistic, and I can understand those viewpoints but I also think that this book is feasible. Among the top complaint is (1a) you cannot fall in love with somebody in just 7 days (1b) you cannot feel hurt if you are ghosted after one week. I’ll be honest, I saw 1b mainly from people who never dated in the social media dating age, so I kind of disregarded it. As for 1a, I have definitely fallen for a friendship in that short amount of time, so why then because their relationship is romantic (read sexual) can this not also be true? If you spend every hour for 7 full days with somebody and still like them at the end of it, don’t you deserve to feel hurt if they decide you aren’t worth it anymore?

Recommended For This was a light read, with multiple layers. I thought it was a great book for summer and I am really glad that I picked it for my July Book of the Month box. I think you need to have some understanding of modern dating in order to understand this book fully. I also think you need some concept of “real life” in that Sarah’s life is far from perfect and the more you can relate to her, the easier it will be to enjoy your read.

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Love and Ruin, Paula McLain (Audible Audio)

Rating: 2.5 stars

Mood: Love?

Would Recommend?: Maybe

Wine Pairing: Sweet White (Riesling or Chardonnay)

Summary Martha Gellhorn, the third wife of Ernest Hemingway recounts their love as it buds, grows, and ultimately falls apart. Gellhorn is a headstrong woman, and an incredible journalist. Her love to Hemingway is secondary to her individual success, but don’t read this book if that’s what you want. This book delves heavily into the romance of Gellhorn and Hemingway. From her resistance to be with a married man, to her insistence that they belong together, and even on to her understanding that it wasn’t meant to last. Throughout it all, Gellhorn holds strong to her career, including using her maiden name rather than use her husband to reach success. It’s almost a story about how a behind every strong woman… there’s willpower keeping her going.

What I didn’t like I have read The Paris Wife, and I just felt like this novel was a few beats short of that one. There is still the classic woman falling for a man and getting hurt. Something about this strong woman protagonist just bothered me. It isn’t that I have a problem with a strong woman protagonist, not at all. But it felt unnatural. Maybe it’s the time period (1937) that makes it feel weird. Or maybe it’s just the way it’s written. I am completely unsure right now.

What I did like January LaVoy is a wonderful narrator, so much so, that I searched to see what books my library has narrated by her.

Other Notes It’s a lighter read. I wouldn’t call it light, and I definitely enjoyed the audiobook version.

Recommended For I honestly have no idea. But, by all means, read it if it sounds interesting.

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