Book Reviews: July 2018

I’ve been rearranging my bookshelf and rediscovering some classics, so this month I only managed 3 new (to me) books, and here they are:

Death at Wentwater Court by Carola Dunn:

After the brain-buster that is The Name of the Rose last month, I wanted some light, easy read, and this cozy mystery just fits the bill. It features the Honorable Daisy Darymple, an aspiring journalist who visits a country estate to write an article about it and ends up entangled in a murder case that occurs during her stay. It’s very standard stuff, and at another time I may find it boring, but it’s a super quick read and the main character is refreshingly relatable, unlike the leads in some detective novels I’ve read (Flavia de Luce and Mary Russell come to mind). I might check out other books in this series. 3/5

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows:

This epistolary novel revolves around a writer in 1946 England who starts a correspondence with some people in Guernsey and learns about their experience of the German occupation in World War II. It’s mostly about books and book lovers, so of course I enjoy it. Don’t let the twee title deter you, the story is sweet but not cloyingly so, because the World War II stuff always adds a somber note. My only complaint is the romantic storyline, which I finds a bit predictable. 4/5

Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly:

I adore the movie, so naturally, I was excited to read this book, which is a non-fictional account of the black female mathematicians’ work at NASA from World War II up to the 1960’s. Unfortunately, the book is nowhere as good. It’s well researched, to be sure, but it seems the author was so in love with her research that she didn’t want to leave out any details. What’s worse is that she is not much of a storyteller, so the book is just a dense collection of dry facts and the women featured in it are just a series of names, instead of being actual characters whose lives you want to follow. It’s a shame, really. These women’s stories are extraordinary and they could have been told in a much more entertaining manner. 2/5

What did you guys read?

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3 Comments on “Book Reviews: July 2018”

  1. Mike says:

    I’m so happy that you enjoyed the movie “Hidden Figures”! I did also. I went to go see it when it was playing in theaters.

    And I agree with you concerning the book. I tried listening to it on audio CD and I felt the same way. It was very hard to keep my interest, even though I really wanted to be interested in learning about these extraordinary women that I never knew about until the movie came out.
    I thought about maybe reading the “children’s version” of the book (we have it in our library), which may be a little easier to digest than the adult version. I will have to see!

    I’ll be doing my book reviews next week, so you’ll see then. I have some pretty good ones to share!

  2. Kezzie says:

    I am currently reading about my 20th Daisy Dalrymple book, The case of a murdered muckraker! They are very easy reads- comfort readings but I love them! I also loved the Guernsey book- Any book told in letter form is usually one I love!

  3. […] in 2018: Either the Takeshi Kovacs series (Altered Carbon) or the Daisy Dalrymple series (Death at Wentwater Court) by Carola Dunn. Both are crime series, though they cannot be more different – one is set in […]


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