WWW Wednesday: March 4

WWW Wednesday was originally hosted by A Daily Rhythm, and now maintained by Taking on a World of Words.

There are three prompts for WWW Wednesday:
–What are you currently reading?
–What did you finish recently reading?
–What do you think you’ll read next?

The A.I. Who Loved Me by Alyssa Cole

I began listening to this story on Audible the other day, when I was searching for something light to read. So far it’s a good love story, with a slight twist!

We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry

I received an ARC of this book through Pantheon Books. I thoroughly enjoyed it! Anything with strong female empowerment with witchcraft is a plus!

The Other People by C.J. Tudor

This was truly a thrilling, twisty tale! The ending caught me be by surprise. I’m looking forward to Kayla’s (@booksandlala) show recapping the book!

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

I’m finally going to begin this book! I’ve heard lots of good things about it, so I’m hoping for the best!

WWW Wednesday: December 11

WWW Wednesday was originally hosted by A Daily Rhythm, and now maintained by Taking on a World of Words.

There are three prompts for WWW Wednesday:
–What are you currently reading?
–What did you finish recently reading?
–What do you think you’ll read next?

Christmas by Accident by Camron Wright
Diving in to my Christmas reads! So far it’s a quick piece. Hopefully I’ll be done by this evening.

Rewritten by Tara Gilboy
I received Rewritten through NetGalley. So far I’m liking this Middle Grade story!

Crier’s War by Nina Varela
This was such a great, dramatic story, filled with sudden turns!

The Silvered Serpents by Roshani Chokshi
Wow. This was such a wonderful sequel! And that cliffhanger…

The Dogs of Christmas by W. Bruce Cameron
I can’t wait to check off another cute, Christmas tale on my list!

Favorite Book of October /Blogtober Day 30

I’m taking part in The Library Looter & Anniek’s Library Blogtober challenge!

I would say that my favorite book read this month was A Dream So Dark by L.L. McKinney. It’s the follow up tale to A Blade So Black. I love fairy tale re-tellings, but Alice in Wonderland stories are my favorite! You can check out my review for the story HERE!

What was your favorite book read this month? Let me know in the comments!

WWW Wednesday: October 23

WWW Wednesday was originally hosted by A Daily Rhythm, and now maintained by Taking on a World of Words.

There are three prompts for WWW Wednesday:
–What are you currently reading?
–What did you finish recently reading?
–What do you think you’ll read next?

Keeping Her Close (a Pacific Cove Romance)
by Carol Ross

This book is the opposite of October’s ‘spooky’ themes, but I love reading books from different genres! I’m only on the first few pages. Romance novels can be very clean or very racy, so it will be interesting to see which direction this goes!

Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy #1)
by Emily A. Duncan

I liked reading this book! I enjoyed the combined ‘hate-to-love’ and ‘monster romance’ storylines, and the banter between characters kept the romantic tension quite healthy. The world building was also very well done!

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

I hope to get to this story before October comes to a close, but I’m looking forward to reading it no matter what! I love books set in a library!

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson

I’ve had Sorcery of Thorns for months! I’m hopeful that I can get to this book sooner rather than later. Keep bringing stories with libraries as the main setting!

What are you reading this week?

Favorite Vampire or Werewolf/Blogtober Day 9

My favorite Vampire is Louis from Anne Rice’s Interview With a Vampire series. Throughout the book, Louis is struggling with his new undead identity while fighting to keep his humanity intact.

I also love the vampire clan from The Lost Boys. Kiefer Sutherland’s portrayal of David is quite riveting!

Who is your favorite Vampire or Werewolf? Feel free to share in the comments!

October Reading Blog #1/Blogtober Day 2

I began the month reading L.L. McKinney’s ‘A Dream So Dark’. I’m about halfway through, and I’m really enjoying the book so far! I really appreciate how McKinney expands on the world of Wonderland, and the many eccentric people and creatures Alice encounters along her journey. There’s also lots of tension taking place, and it’s definitely keeping me on edge!

I also read some poetry and prose from Lucille Clifton and Judith Ortiz Cofer. Thanks to the Poets House library in New York City, I had access to unlimited works of poetry. Visiting Poets House brings me back to those regular meetings with my poetry therapy mentor and community. We shared and learned so much with each other!

I hope your reading and writing is off to a promising start this month!

‘The Lost Girls of Paris’ by Pam Jenoff/A Review

The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Genoff
Length: 384 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Park Row Books
Release Date: January 29, 2019

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

1946, Manhattan

Gace Healey is rebuilding her life after losing her husband during the war. One morning while passing through Grand Central Terminal on her way to work, she finds an abandoned suitcase tucked beneath a bench. Unable to resist her own curiosity, Grace opens the suitcase, where she discovers a dozen photographs—each of a different woman. In a moment of impulse, Grace takes the photographs and quickly leaves the station.

Grace soon learns that the suitcase belonged to a woman named Eleanor Trigg, leader of a ring of female secret agents who were deployed out of London during the war. Twelve of these women were sent to Occupied Europe as couriers and radio operators to aid the resistance, but they never returned home, their fates a mystery. Setting out to learn the truth behind the women in the photographs, Grace finds herself drawn to a young mother turned agent named Marie, whose daring mission overseas reveals a remarkable story of friendship, valor and betrayal.

Vividly rendered and inspired by true events, New York Times bestselling author Pam Jenoff shines a light on the incredible heroics of the brave women of the war, and weaves a mesmerizing tale of courage, sisterhood and the great strength of women to survive in the hardest of circumstances.

My Review:
I discovered The Lost Girls of Paris fairly recently, at a book club held at my local library. Within the first couple chapters, I was swept up instantly.

The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff was inspired by true events during World War II, describing the pro-active role women played in order to take down Nazi Germany. We begin the story following Grace in post-war New York, a young war widow starting her life over in Hells Kitchen. While commuting to work, Grace discovers a suitcase with the photos of 12 women, and she goes on a search to discover the truth behind their origin. We are then taken back to 1944, following Eleanor (a secretary in charge of the women’s secret agent unit in London), and Marie (a recruit placed into Occupied France to conduct radio transmissions for the British). Throughout the book, we venture back and forth in time as Grace slowly discovers the truth behind these mysterious women’s origins, and during the period of the war, when Eleanor and Marie are faced with difficult choices in the extreme hardships.

     I found myself emotionally invested in each woman’s struggle, as they all found themselves having to make choices that would effect the lives of those around them. Marie and Eleanor had extremely difficult upbringings, which molded them later in life to hold great strength in the face of difficult circumstances. While Grace’s experiences in the story were those of a curious investigator (her timeline occurs roughly two years after the war ended), she is also faced with a choice that could effect the outcome of her life.

     The Lost Girls of Paris also takes place in a time where a woman’s role in the war was unheard of. Women were expected to wait for their men to return from the war, working just to simply bide their time. The thought of women leading and working in military roles was considered ridiculous and threatening to many. The act of women living and working independently was also highly discouraged. Grace, Eleanor and Marie were all living their lives in the face of extreme opposition (and this book described many harrowing details of wartime Europe), and they all made it a point to persevere within the struggles.

     I was thoroughly moved by The Lost Girls of Paris, as it was an intense novel describing women being resilient during the hardships of war. If you are someone who enjoys historical fiction while learning about World War II, then this book is for you!

Rating: 4/5 Stars  

September 11, 2001: Eighteen Years Later

I remember exactly what I was doing that day.

I lived in Northern NJ. I just finished breakfast, and turned off the television to go online. Since it was 8:30am, the horrible news hadn’t broken yet.

I was just checking email, readying myself to take the train to South Orange that afternoon to hang out with friends.

About 20 minutes later, the Breaking News clips flashed on my screen: The World Trade Center was under attack.

No. It couldn’t be true.

I quickly flipped on the television, and for the next couple of hours, I was confronted with the sight of the Twin Towers on fire. Falling to the ground.

All I could feel was shock, and horror. Shock, because my uncle and roommate from college were working in Manhattan that morning. Horrified at the carnage unfolding before my eyes.

I decided not to travel to South Orange that evening. This gathering could wait. Being with family could not.

Thankfully, my uncle was safe. He chose to stay at a hotel in Manhattan that night due to impending travel restrictions.
I couldn’t get a hold of my friend until that evening, due to phone lines tied up throughout the day. She made it home to the Bronx that night, but it took the entire day.

While everyone in my family circle was safe, sadly there were many others who could not say the same thing.

A no-fly zone was strictly enforced throughout North America. I remember sitting outside my front porch that night. The silence that greeted me was deafening.

The days and weeks that followed were filled with sorrow. Flyers of the missing were draped throughout Lower Manhattan. Many people clinging to that thread of hope, waiting for a reassuring word that never came.

A week later, I returned to New York City for a class. I remembered the sight of Lower Manhattan still in smoke. The area would continue to smolder for weeks.

The years that followed the attacks were met with the construction of the 9/11 memorial (which opened on 2011), and the fight for 9/11 First Responders receiving the care they desperately needed (which finally received renewal this year).

The one thing that remains constant through time is the Sept. 11 rememberance on television. It’s a somber event, as people recite the names of the deceased. This year, some of the grandchildren/nieces/nephews are reading names. It’s doubly touching; while they weren’t present to see their relatives, their memories are kept alive.

Eighteen years later, crowd surrounding the World Trade Center site grows thinner, but the message of remembrance stays the same.

Life goes on, yet we must never forget.

February 6, 2018: Reading Update

I’m about 70% through with ‘The Oyster Thief’. I enjoy this underwater tale, and the world building within ocean territory is stunning. I am finding the story to be a bit traditional , the dialogue between the main character and her family a bit traditional in the modest sense. I’m eager to see how this story ends!