Speed Reviewing

As evidenced by the lack of reviews on my blog lately, I have had neither the time nor the inspiration lately to write reviews. My main issue is inspiration: I just haven’t felt like I have had opinions to produce full-on reviews. So instead I tried to do something I have dubbed speed reviewing! It’s like speed dating, only I’m reviewing books (you get it, right?). I am going to choose a book to review, set myself a 3 minute timer, and write out a quick review. Full disclosure: I will probably edit a little bit for coherency. But other than that, it’s just a speedy 3 minute review. So let’s go!

Persuasion by Jane Austen: Admittedly this took me a little bit to finish, but it is a classic and those always take me a while. Honestly, I really enjoyed Persuasion! Perhaps even more than Sense and Sensibility. I thought Anne’s character was interesting, Mary was both incredibly obnoxious and hilarious, and that letter at the end was one of the most romantic things I have ever read. If not the most romantic. It was beautiful; romance peaked with Anne Eliot and Frederick Wentworth.

Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto: I cannot believe that I’m saying this but…this would have been better as a movie. I don’t know, I was a little let down by this one. It wasn’t very mystery-y which was kind of disappointing, it wasn’t laugh-out-loud funny the way I was hoping, and the romance was a small portion of the book, and thus not fully developed enough. I feel like there is a lot to be done with physical comedy in this story, which really works better in a visual format. But also to be fair, the humor in this book just isn’t my type of humor, so this is not to say that you won’t find it funny! And to give it credit, I definitely did not see some of those plot points coming. I think the whole thing was just more soapy than I expected it to be, and I think if I had known that going in I would have enjoyed it a bit more.

Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi: Wow. I mean, how do I even start with this book? It was so good. Now that I’ve started writing this, I don’t even know what to write. I really liked the subjects it dealt with, I liked the messages, I thought it was really well done. I joked in one of my Goodreads updates that I knew the writing was good because I didn’t cry about the death, but I did start crying at a lemon pound cake. (It’s about the kindness of human beings and how we should take care of each other!!!) Basically just it was fantastic, you should read it, I should read it again.

Shit, Actually by Lindy West: My 100% subjective review of this book: this book is like popcorn. It is just light and fluffy, and so easy to keep munching on! I will acknowledge that this book isn’t for everyone. For example, if you are a wet blanket who doesn’t know how to poke fun at the things you like. Each chapter recaps a different movie, with West’s commentary thrown in. A big part of the reason I liked this book is because I loved West’s snark and sarcasm. She has a unique voice and is not afraid to use it. I also find the recap format of the book very useful because while I have seen some of these movies, most of the ones I have seen I don’t actually remember that well. So basically West just saved me the hours it would take to actually watch all of these, and instead get the plot summed up and a pretty good temperature as to whether or not I would ever be interested in watching them. (The answer, for the most part, is no, I think I can live with just her sarcastic synopsis and be done with it).

Teach Me by Olivia Dade: This contemporary romance between two teachers was really sweet! I thought our main characters were fleshed out well, I enjoyed reading their relationship develop, and it got me out of a book slump. I have to give it credit for being fairly accurate in portraying high school and things like AP courses, because so many books just throw things around are not even remotely accurate. It also got me out of a reading slump, which was nice. However, I found the lack of a clandestine classroom make out scene to be disappointing. I realize it’s not super ethical on the part of our characters, but how could you write a romance between teachers without it?

Perfect on Paper by Sophie Gonzales: I was so thrilled to read this book and finally see what all the hype was about, and I have to say: I think the hype was warranted! I really really loved Perfect on Paper. I loved Darcy, I loved the romance, I loved the discussions of sexuality, especially bisexuality. All the stuff about bisexuality made me so happy. And it was just a good story! I have to say though, I didn’t like the ending. Everything was just tied up too nicely. Without giving anything away, there are 3 good things that happen to Darcy at the end of the book, and the way it’s moving up to that point, it appears that she is only going to be able to get 2 of those things at most (as in, she has to make decisions about these things), but then she ends up getting all 3, yay! Except it just felt like too much to me. It was too sweet and too tidy. One of the things that I liked was how messy the characters were, and I would have liked to still have a little unresolved messiness at the ending too.

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