January 2017 Quick Lit

Each month I link with Modern Mrs. Darcy's Quick Lit as a way to talk about the books I liked, but didn't review.

Hello readers! Happy New Year!

I read so many wonderful books at the end of last year, that it's no surprise that I'm in a bit of a reading slump now. I'm hoping now that new year work craziness has eased it'll pick back up again.

Here are the winners from late December and early January.

The Boy at the Top of the Mountain by John Boyne - This is a World War II book told from a perspective you don't often hear. It's an interesting look at how power corrupts, and an example of just how Nazi Germany came to be.

Uprooted by Naomi Novik - So, so good. Perfect for curling up with on a cold day. It's a fantasy book that is not a trilogy! Imagine that!

Forty Autumns by Nina Willner - I've been meaning to read more about the Cold War, and starting with this book really enhanced my interest. It's a non-fiction account of a family on both sides of the wall. Don't let the length or the subject matter worry you. This is a super engaging quick read. (Review copy from Library Thing)

Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson - I read this, oh , probably about 15 years ago. I wanted to read it again to see if it held up. I'm happy to say it did. It's a World War II book with touches of To Kill A Mockingbird. If you missed it when it first came out, it's not too late.

Note: links to amazon.com are affiliate links.

REVIEW: A Place We Knew Well by Susan Carol McCarthy

A Place We Knew Well is a fascinating novel that takes place in the days of the Cuban Missile Crisis. It hits all of my sweet spots: a historical novel with likable characters, and a good story line. Besides the likability though, what fascinated me the most was the exploration of the ways people act in times of extreme stress.

In the novel we learn about the crisis, mostly through the character's reactions to newspaper articles and television reports. At the same time, we get caught up in small town drama heightened by the fact that the residents are kind of worried that World War III is going to start at any minute. You really get a personal and nuanced look into the Cuban Missile Crisis from the point of view of a variety of people. Reading this book encouraged me to read more about the Cold War.

If you liked A Place We Knew Well try:

When I was reading this, I kept thinking about one of my favorite brain science books Willpower.  The reasons people use (or don't) when making decisions is fascinating to me, and very applicable to the story line in A Place We Knew Well.

People see the name Stephen King, and immediately decide they won't like it. What's great about 11/22/63 though isn't any kind of mystical horror woo woo stuff. What's great is the historical detail, and obvious research that went into this most excellent time travel novel.

Books I'm Adding To My TBR:

Note: Links to amazon.com are affiliate links. I was given a copy of A Place We Knew Well as part of the Library Thing Early Reviewers program, but all opinions are mine.