First Book Review of 2019 ~ Roses and Rain Boots .

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

First Book Review of 2019

exact sweater, on sale here too // exact denim // exact Hunter Boots

On rainy/snowy days my favorite place to be (other than our home) is a book store. I love the whole vibe in a book store. This Monday it was cold and rainy, so my mom and I took a trip to browse the new arrivals. We both have a mission to read all the books we have in our house.  Do you ever find that the books your select is a direct reflection of your mood that day? And sometimes I don't feel like reading the ones I have. I have SO many nonfiction texts on my to-read list, and while they are all books I want to read, I don't find myself devouring them the same way I would if it was a thriller or romance story.

Without even intending to, I have another themed post. I have the same goal in 2019, that I did in 2018 to read a book a week this year and while I'm embarrassed to admit I am not maintaining that goal, I am proud to admit that I have really stepped outside my comfort zone and challenged myself to read books I wouldn't normally select.

Today's book reviews actually center around books that feature strong women! If you are looking for books that remind of the power and influence you have as a woman, I've got you covered.





Educated. 
I struggle to find words to describe this book. I wasn't sure if I would enjoy this read and I was pleasantly surprised by how gripped I was right from the beginning. The book is shocking and a harsh reminder that our world is not perfect. We have so much knowledge and opportunities, yet some aren't even offered the opportunity of receiving an education.

This memoir is gripping and heart-wrenching at the same time. I frequently had to put the book down because I was so upset. Some parts were so disturbing I couldn't read the book at night for it kept me awake. Throughout the book, I was frustrated about the life she was forced to live as a child. But I was discouraged that as an adult she couldn't (spoiler alert) save herself and kept going back home. I know some would disagree with me on this one because in some major ways she was able to save herself; however, if she had been more willing and open to receiving help along the way her life could have changed more dramatically and more quickly. For me, I didn't get the closure I desired for her and for myself as the reader. I desperately wanted her to feel accomplished and proud of the life she chose for herself. I guess the author wants to expose readers to questions such as what defines kin? What are you willing to sacrifice for family?

If you are interested in any of the following topics: nonfiction, teaching, or family, then I highly highly recommend this read.



The Radium Girls.
I am definitely against the norm on this book. With over 1,300 reviews and a 4.7 out of a 5-star rating, I have to be completely honest, I struggled. STRUGGLED big time to get through this book. Not only was it super long, but I felt so detached from the characters. Obviously, the author couldn't take the time to help us fall in love with each character because the book would be never-ending, I do wish she focused on a few characters to help us really grabble with the content and how horrifying it was.

This book was recommended to me by a friend who is also challenging herself to read books outside of her comfort zone, and for that I am grateful. It exposed to me to some content and a bit of history I wouldn't have otherwise known. However; personally, I just wish the book read more like a memoir and less like a history textbook.


The Nightingale. 
If there is one book you are going to read from this round-up, it has to be it! For all my history buffs out there this one is for you! (Rachel, I'm looking at you, although you probably have already read it.) This book is beautiful. It touches upon a horrific part of history that should never be forgotten from a different perspective. Most books that I've read about World War 2 are from the perspective of Jewish descent. This book, however, captures the view of the community left behind and the struggles they faced in their own way.

Set in a small town in France, the town is overtaken by German soldiers who are sent to control the town. They limit the citizen's rations, occupy their homes, and enforce strict laws. With many of their husbands sent off to war, the women are left alone and vulnerable. It broke my heart to watch as the horror grew as the days progressed and the war continued. There were many times I had to step away from the book because the emotions were so raw.

For fear of spoiling, I will leave it at this, this book reminds us of the power and influence women always have and will continue to play in being a fighter!



The Proposal.
I think it's safe to admit I am obsessed with Reese Witherspoon. I mean who isn't?  Seriously, she becomes more beautiful and confident every day, plus she's so relatable.  So it is no surprise that I am in love with her book club recommendations. I am always over the moon when I've read one of her picks. It is so validating to know I picked a good book. I mean Reese only picks books that are instantly best sellers, well-written with sophisticated plot lines, which is why I was so shocked to see her pick for February was "The Proposal." I mean this book just screams cheesy. I read the summary and wasn't really interested, but after just reading The Nightingale, I wanted a "lighter" read so I figured why not.

Y'all this book was SO good, I was able to finish it in one morning. Seriously, I mean it helped I was trying to kick my cold, but I spent a good portion of the morning lounging with a good book in hand, and I finished it by lunchtime and let me be the first to tell you I underestimated the book. The writing is so easy. The author makes it incredibly easy to fall in love with the characters. Not your typical romantic comedy. Jasmine Guillory breaks stereotypes for all women.

Nikole, the protagonist, is such a strong and independent woman. I love it! She dared to say "no" to a proposal in front of a stadium full of people and is saved by this stranger Carlos and his sister who helps her smoothly exist the stadium with her head held high. It comes as no surprise to the reader that these too quickly hit it off, the reader then follows them on their playful rollercoaster that everyone knows is the beginning magic of any new relationship, but when neither one wants serious commitment trouble is looming.

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