‘Inconvenient Daughter’ by Lauren J. Sharkey/Book Review

Inconvenient Daughter by Lauren J. Sharkey
Publisher: Akashic Books/Kaylie Jones Books
Length: 232 pages
Genre: Fiction
Acquired through NetGalley
Release Date: June 23, 2020
(CW: domestic violence, sexual assault)

Synopsis

A vibrant and provocative debut novel that dispels myths surrounding transracial adoption.

Rowan Kelly knows she’s lucky. After all, if she hadn’t been adopted, she could have spent her days in a rice paddy, or a windowless warehouse assembling iPhones—they make iPhones in Korea, right? Either way, slowly dying of boredom on Long Island is surely better than the alternative. But as she matures, she realizes that she’ll never know if she has her mother’s eyes, or if she’d be in America at all had her adoptive parents been able to conceive.

Rowan sets out to prove that she can be someone’s first choice. After running away from home—and her parents’ rules—and ending up beaten, barefoot, and topless on a Pennsylvania street courtesy of Bad Boy Number One, Rowan attaches herself to Never-Going-to-Commit. When that doesn’t work out, she fully abandons self-respect and begins browsing Craigslist personals. But as Rowan dives deeper into the world of casual encounters with strangers, she discovers what she’s really looking for.

With a fresh voice and a quick wit, Lauren J. Sharkey dispels the myths surrounding transracial adoption, the ties that bind, and what it means to belong.

A debut novel on our Kaylie Jones Books imprint.

My Thoughts

Thank you to NetGalley and Kaylie Jones Books for providing me a copy of Inconvenient Daughter, for exchange of an honest review!

Inconvenient Daughter tells the story of Rowan Kelly, a girl struggling with her identity as a transracial adoptee (Rowan is Korean, adopted by an American family) living in Long Island. The story takes you through Rowan’s life, while simultaneously following her account at a hospital after a traumatic encounter.

The story describes Rowan’s struggle trying in vain to establish a maternal bond with her adoptive mother, yet the demons of feeling like an outsider follows her every moment of her life. Rowan’s foray into relationships is a string of harrowing life lessons, causing her to believe that her life will forever be one of abandonment. The need to reach out to a loving, maternal figure is a constant theme in Inconvenient Daughter. The absence of a biological mother paints a picture of detachment in every encounter she has. The friction between Rowan and her adoptive mother is also constant.

Lauren J. Sharkey does not hold back in documenting Rowan’s emotional experiences in her young adult years. There are some parts that are uncomfortable to read, as Rowan experiences severe hardships once she’s in the outside world. Through all of the challenges she receives in life, Rowan manages to move forward and rebuild her purpose in life. Rowan’s journey in discovering and valuing herself is an immense, uphill battle.

I really enjoyed Inconvenient Daughter, as it’s a powerful account of a young woman’s search for identity and family bonds!

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Do you think you will add Inconvienent Daughter to your TBR? Let me know in the comments!

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Top 5 Tuesday: Summer Reads

Top 5 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Shanah, the Bionic Book Worm. You can find the topics for May here.

This Week’s Topic: Top 5 Summer Reads

Beach Read by Emily Henry

Two competing authors work together to trade tips (and other secrets!) in this fun romance!

The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon

Not only does this book have romance, there’s also strong female friendship. A win-win!

Something to Talk About by Meryl Wilsner

A scandalous snapshot sparks the beginning of an unbreakable bond between two women in Wilsner’s debut novel!

Party of Two by Jasmine Guillory

An unexpected encounter turns into an adorable, secret romance!

Take a Hint, Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert

It’s Dani’s turn for a surprising romance in Hibbert’s next installment in the ‘Brown Sisters’ stories!

What are your top 5 summer reads? Feel free to share in the comments!

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Goodreads Monday: May 25

I’m taking part in Goodreads Monday. This was started by Lauren’s Page Turners, in which you choose a book listed on your Goodreads TBR and talk about it.

This Week’s Post:

When Reason Breaks by Cindy L. Rodriguez

I received this on my Kindle a while ago, but since I let too many things occupy my mind, I never got around to reading it! I hope to get to reading this moving story soon!

Synopsis

13 Reasons Why meets the poetry of Emily Dickinson in this gripping debut novel perfect for fans of Sara Zarr or Jennifer Brown.

A Goth girl with an attitude problem, Elizabeth Davis must learn to control her anger before it destroys her. Emily Delgado appears to be a smart, sweet girl, with a normal life, but as depression clutches at her, she struggles to feel normal. Both girls are in Ms. Diaz’s English class, where they connect to the words of Emily Dickinson. Both are hovering on the edge of an emotional precipice. One of them will attempt suicide. And with Dickinson’s poetry as their guide, both girls must conquer their personal demons to ever be happy.

In an emotionally taut novel with a richly diverse cast of characters, readers will relish in the poetry of Emily Dickinson and be completely swept up in the turmoil of two girls grappling with demons beyond their control.

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Book Blogger Hop: May 25

The Book Blogger Hop is a book meme hosted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer where you answer a weekly prompt featuring a book related question. This way you have a chance to check out other people’s blogs and gain new followers yourself.

This week’s question

If you own an eBook, would you also purchase a print copy as well? (submitted by Tabatha @ Broken Soul Reviews)

If I have an eARC that I really enjoyed, I would definitely buy a print copy! I would do whatever I can to support the author.

How about you? Would you purchase a print copy if you enjoyed your ebook version? Feel free to share!


Sunday Sentence: May 24

I’m participating in David Abrams’s ‘Sunday Sentence‘ project, sharing the best sentence I’ve read during the past week, ‘out of context and without commentary’.

‘I love supporting authors. I love supporting bookstores. I love supporting publishing.’

Source: Ariel Bissett, The TBR Tag (or, how many unread books do I own?!)

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Maddy McGuire CEO: Bring Back the Bees by Emma Bland Smith/A Review

Maddy McGuire, CEO: Bring Back the Bees
Author: Emma Bland Smith
Length: 112 pages
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Publisher: Calico/Magic Wagon
Release Date: August 1, 2018

As part of a summer assignment, I began reading children’s books to remotely distribute to families in my school district. Being a lover of books, I found this to be an ideal opportunity to expose myself to more children’s fiction, and share my thoughts on them!

Maddy McGuire is a young girl who has natural business skills. While visiting a museum with her family, Maddy becomes aware of the decline in bee colonies. Right away, Maddy and her friends take on the task in bringing a bee hive to her school. During their journey, Maddy discovers that fostering a neighborhood bee colony takes a lot of footwork. Through some tricky situations and teamwork, Maddy learns that bringing an huge idea into fruition requires a community effort!

Bring Back the Bees has diverse representation. Maddy’s close friend Amina is from Syria, and the book provides a brief back story from a previous installment about Maddy’s efforts in making Amina’s family welcome in the neighborhood. Although the story is fiction, it provides some factual information in becoming a young entrepreneur to benefit your community.

This book is definitely beneficial for grade school children who are interested in learning about helping community members through teamwork. It’s great reading material for educators to offer students!

**This book is part of a series, but you don’t need to read them back to back to learn about Maddy and her friends!**

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Synopsis

On a trip to the science museum, Maddy learns that bees are fast becoming endangered. As someone with a strong concern for the environment (and a keen love of honey!), she wants to bring a hive to her school. Unfortunately, the beekeeper at the community garden is struggling with her business. Maddy comes up with her sweetest plan yet: a honey-focused booth at the farmers market. The profits will save the beekeeper’s business and the beekeeper will give Maddy’s school its own hive. Maddy’s learned a lot about business, but things get sticky when she translates her skills to the conservation world. Aligned to Common Core standards and correlated to state standards.

Do you enjoy reading Children’s stories? Feel free to share!

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Friday Reads: May 22

I began reading the book Inconvenient Daughter by Lauren K. Sharkey. I received this story through NetGalley and Kaylie Jones Books. From what I learned about this book so far, it centers around a young woman struggling to find peace with her identity as an adopted person.

What books are you planning on reading this weekend? Feel free to share!

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Bookish Friday: May 22

Bookish Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Laurie Reads and Niffler Reads. The prompts for February to May can be found here.

This Week’s Topic: Disappointing Books

It’s difficult for me to feel let down by a book, but here are a few that weren’t for me:

Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty

While I was drawn in with the ‘health retreat with a twist’ plot point, the lives of most of the participants didn’t completely hold my interest.

Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero

I loved the idea of the group taking on an adventure as adults, but once I got past the ‘Scooby Gang’ nostalgia, I just couldn’t get into it!

What reads did you find disappointing? Feel free to share in the comments!

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The Groundhog Day Book Tag

I came across this tag through Emer A Little Haze Book Blog! This tag was originally created by Nina Testa on YouTube.

Many people gather for groundhog day but you don’t understand why……What is a book everyone gathers around hyping, but you don’t understand why?
Serpent and Dove‘. Just not interested!

The famous groundhog predicts the weather….. A book you find predictable?
Home for Christmas‘ by Catherine Lanigan. It was a cute story, but very predictable!

Phil the Groundhog is said to never die and have the power to predict weather….. A book dealing with a mythological creature
The Hobbit‘ by J.R.R. Tolkien. I love that story!

In the movie Groundhog Day Bill Murray relives the same day several times…….A book dealing with living a day over and over or time travel?
‘Time After Time’ by Lisa Grunwald. Great historical fiction, with a supernatural twist!

Punxsutawney Phil is from a tiny town in Pennsylvania….A book based in a small town?
‘Beach Read‘, set in a small town in Michigan!

If you would also like to do this, consider yourself tagged!

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Starfish Pier by Irene Hannon/Book Review

Starfish Pier by Irene Hannon
Length: 352 pages
Publisher: Revell
Book acquired through Revell Reads Blogger Program
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 31, 2020

My Thoughts

**I received a complimentary copy of Starfish Pier through Revell Reads Blogger Program, in exchange for an honest review**

Starfish Pier is a romantic story with a slow build. It gives the backstory of Steven and Holly, two people with opposing viewpoints on life. The tension in their love story only deepens after Steven’s details from his difficult past are revealed.

This story is layered with religious undertones; Holly is a strong pro-life advocate, and her resolve to find value in every life is felt from everyone around her. Despite being a new resident of this seaside Oregon community, Holly’s calm demeanor is welcomed by her students and other members in the area. While Steven is a bit intimidated by the cause Holly strongly holds to her heart, he is equally drawn to her heart.

Starfish Pier also focuses on Patrick (Steven’s brother), as he fights alcohol addition. This story plays the role of Patrick fighting the battle of the bottle, as his habit threatens to repeat the dangerous cycle his father lived through. Patrick grapples with his addiction, but there is nurturing guidance on his side from his wife and other townspeople.

While I felt that Starfish Pier kept drifting to many storylines within Steven’s family (and the sudden tale about the cannon), I did appreciate that this story that teaches about the power of forgiveness. Love and understanding can only come through patience.

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Synopsis

A year ago, ex-Delta Force operator Steven Roark left the rigors of combat behind to run fishing charters in Hope Harbor, decompress, and talk some sense into his kid brother. Business is good–but making peace with his past is more challenging than he expected.

First-grade teacher Holly Miller leads a quiet, low-profile existence–until she’s recruited to advocate for a cause that’s dear to her heart. When she solicits Steven’s assistance, sparks fly–especially after they find themselves on opposite sides of an issue that disrupts their placid seaside community.

As these two seemingly incompatible souls search for common ground, might they discover a deeper connection–and find that love can banish darkness and light the way to a future filled with promise?

Bestselling and award-winning author Irene Hannon invites you back to Hope Harbor–where hearts heal . . . and love blooms.

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