August 25th, 2015
Review by Mirah Welday (mwelday)
I used to be an avid reader of John Grisham. I read his first books and really enjoyed them but then I felt Grisham started to get repetitive and I stopped reading his new novels. In reading recent reviews from other readers, I decided to order the audiobook of The Summons. I’m glad I decided to give this one a chance.
The Summons is about brothers Ray and Forrest Atlee and their reactions to the death of their father Judge Atlee. Ray is a successful law professor and Forrest is an addict in and out of rehab. Each son was pushed away by their father for different parental disappointments. Each one forges a life on his own without a relationship with their father and converge on their family home in Clanton, Mississippi after they each receive a summons to appear before their dying father.
What develops after the summons is a tale of questions regarding what their father did in his years after leaving the bench as a judge. Ray and Forrest deal with the death of their father in different ways and neither knows whether he can trust the other.
I enjoyed listening to this audiobook. In addition to being curious about where the story would end, the narrator, Michael Beck, does a convincing job with the Southern accents and gives each character a unique sound. He portrays feelings of confusion, anger, doubt and frustration for each character. I’m glad I decided to give Grisham another chance with this novel; it made some long, dull rides more interesting.
August 21st, 2015
Review by Mirah Welday (mwelday)
The lives and relationships of women are front and center in The Senator’s Wife by Sue Miller.
Meri and Delia are new neighbors. Meri is young and newly married. Delia is older and, while married, has lived a life separate from her husband for many years because of his chronic infidelity. Miller brings these two women together in a way that creates an almost reverential relationship that follows them through a year in their lives.
Miller seems to acknowledge that what society has determined women should or shouldn’t do doesn’t always fit easily into real lives. If a woman has a cheating husband, everyone looking at their relationship knows what her response should be. She should stay, she should leave, she should get her revenge, or she should take him for everything he is worth….everyone has the answer.
I admit I had a hard time relating to the main characters Meri and Delia. They made decisions I don’t think I would have made in their situations but I don’t know that for sure. I think Meri wanted to learn how to be a good wife from Delia. Delia wanted to live her own life and never asked to be Meri’s role model. I was caught up in their lives and relationships but I was found myself asking ‘what?’ and ‘why?’ too often throughout the book. The ending made me feel disappointment in both of them; yet, it was an appropriate, almost inevitable ending.
Even with my inability to really connect with either character, I still think the book was worth reading. Miller uses her novel’s structure and character development to tell a complete story and one that the reader could believe would truly happen.
August 18th, 2015
We have something fun to announce…the debut of our Book Review Contest on our Facebook page!
Share your book reviews with others, win Wish List books – what could be better? Here’s how it works:
1) Write a book review on PaperBackSwap.
2) Share it on your Facebook timeline and tag the PaperBackSwap Facebook page
3) You are automatically entered into the contest!
Each week, we will pick finalists from the entries. Then our members will vote on the best review and the winner will get a new book from his/her Wish List (see rules for details).
Check the FAQs for all the details, and then take a look at your BIR List or Transaction Archive or Bookshelf for inspiration, and get reviewing! We hope you decide to contribute – book reviews really make a positive difference in the club!
Happy reading (and reviewing),
The PaperBackSwap Team