J-Dub’s Review of “Beautiful Bad: A Novel” by Annie Ward

The story was alright until the awful ending. Real life doesn’t work that way. Or maybe it does? While I know this is fiction, but the ending seemed far fetched with no closure. In the tradition of “Gone Girl”

I did enjoy the work backwards chronological telling until the day of … the after the day of read like a post script. Nice going. For that I rated 3 stars ✨ This book has 3.7 stars ✨ on Goodreads. There’s worse ways to spend your time.

As always more to come.


J-Dub’s Review of “Little Fires Everywhere” by Celeste Ng

From the jacket – Little Fires Everywhere explores the weight of long-held secrets and the ferocious pull of motherhood-and the danger of believing that planning and following the rules can avert disaster, or heartbreak.

No spoilers.  Plots and sub-plots.  Haves and have nots. Putting on facade for others.  Lost dreams.  Choices.  It’s all in there.  Despite the ending being a little too unrealistic (can’t explain more or I’d spoil it), I enjoyed this book and rated it 4 of 5 stars.  Goodreads over rating is 4.12 as of 6/2/19.  Okay, now I am really done. 🙂

As always, more to come.

J-Dub’s Review of “She Wanted It All: A True Story of Sex, Murder, and a Texas Millionaire” by Kathryn Casey

I read this book because I was in between and the story happened to take place in and around Austin Texas. I always enjoy reading something when I know the landmarks. However my enjoyment stops there since true crime is no longer a favorite genre of mine. I used you read books by Ann Rule in the same way someone might pop through a cartridge of Pez candy. Not any longer. Through therapy I learned not to read anything that makes me anxious. I’ve reduced medical journals as well. One day I’ll just keel over. It’s better that way. But I jest. Kind of, sort of, maybe.

I can summarize this true life event in a six word story …

Greedy bitch did it for money!

Her poor girls. Actually poor everyone who crossed her path. Something was missing inside. No soul. And that’s if you believe the prosecution… and I do.

I rate 3 stars. Goodreads overall is at 4.09 stars.

As always more to come.

J-Dub’s Review of “After Anna” by Lisa Scottoline

– No Spoilers –

postpartum, divorce, custody, childhood apraxia, trust funds, high school, relationships, infidelity, murder, womens’ friendships, trial/court system, prison corruption, sex trafficking, emergency rescues, and the list goes on …

I read this book cover to cover in one day. You might think that would make it “unputdownable” but nope. It was an easy read with short chapters titled before and after with the name of the character who’s voice in which the story was told. There were twists and turns which I expect for a psychological thriller but by the end, there was simply way too much going on. Any of the topics could have been made into a book of its’ own. The ending was way too hokey. Tied up in a pretty pink bow. Recommended read though.  I have read worse. I rated 3 of 5 stars, Goodread’s rating is 3.93 of 5 stars.

As always, more to come.

J-Dub’s Review of “The Handmaid’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood

The story is well known by now.  In fact, there is a TV series based on the book which has won some awards and got people talking.  I don’t have anything to add that would spoil the story for someone who has yet to read it.

High level, the setting is after the 2nd civil war in what was formerly the US. Exactly where is unknown (at least I could not figure out, I think maybe northeast by not even sure why).  The story is about class – stations in life and what once was … are things better after the war?  Depends on who you ask.  Women are treated despicably which is why I will never watch the show.

One thing to read about horrors and visualize in my minds eye but watching someone else’s cinematic version is quite another thing.  Still I read as I have always been drawn to dystopian fiction.  To me, there is no better escape than a departure from “real” life.  I’m boring and mundane.  Stories like these take me away and let my imagination go.  Makes me feel better about my own reality because for whatever it is worth, it is not like that.

If this genre is your cuppa tea, you’ll likely enjoy.  I rated 4 of 5 stars on Goodreads.  The overall rating by the masses is 4.09.

As always, more to come.

J-Dubs Review of “This is Me: Loving the Person You Are Today” by Chrissy Metz

Such a feel good book despite sharing the gritty real childhood she endured. What an example of gratitude. No wallowing in self pity just acceptance. Wow!

Novel idea that many have trouble sustaining. Accepting that your experiences good or bad make you who you are today has to be freeing. I felt the metaphorical weight lifting up and away <3.

I loved each y’all and southernism. I enjoyed the conversational tone. Written like one would talk bringing a genuine authenticity. Well done my friend. Well done. My commonplace book overflows.

Recommended read. 5 stars.

As always more to come.

JDubs Review of “The Outsider” by Stephen King

I’m not gonna take a picture of the cover of the book because it was a Kindle. Boo! I’m not downloading a picture either because I’m quickly using up too much space in my WP media.

I can hear you… that’s not why you’re here… you want the review. No spoilers.

This is the same formula that has worked before and will probably continue to work again. The story is a different version of the same if that makes any sense. The formula goes back multiple decades. You would think eventually we’d catch on. But no … many like me are constant readers.

In short, this is about good versus evil. Kind of cops and robbers. Holly of “Finders Keepers” makes re-appearance. I am very empathetic to her character. The supernatural sci-fi-ish ending is on a lesser scale than most of his novels. Everyday flaws of human life juxtaposed against some force that we can only imagine. Do boogeymen exist? Yes! And in real life science explains most. In Mr. King’s work, there is no explanation.

Overall I would say four out of five stars ✨. A recommended read. If you happen to do so, let me know what you think. I’d love to have a virtual book club on this one.

As always more to come.

For the Love of Reading

Yep, I had a break for a bit but now I have two books going and more in the TBR queue.  I would not have started the second book had it not been for opportunity to obtain the book early through a new online venue known as overdrive.  I committed to back to basics with honest to god “real” books from the library but the allure of not having to wait drew me in to reconsider my online book ban. Damn you Kindle app on iPad much more user friendly than the Kindle itself.

Here are two short and sweet snippets and then full on reviews to follow.

The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner -the opposite of a whodunit.  We know from the beginning as the central character is starting the rest of her life behind bars.   Too early to predict where this leads.  So far keeping my interest.

The Outsider by Stephen King – So far this is a gritty real life whodunit.  Pillar of the community or evil among us?  How can someone be in two places at the same time?  Does everyone have a doppelganger?  This book better not end with some sci-fi crap.  You hear me SK?  Do not disappoint your constant reader.

As always, more to come.