Filling the Shelf is basically Mailbox Monday or the more recent Stacking the Shelves, but with a title that suits my blog! If you’re interested in joining the fun or seeing what other bloggers added to their shelves, I invite you to visit the two hosts!
Happy Monday readers!
Hope you had a good week! Time goes by so fast; only a little less than 3 weeks before our move. 3 weeks! It’s going way too fast for my taste, if you ask me. I’ve been all anxious and worried, and feeling a mix of sadness (I do love our actual apartment, and wish we hadn’t been forced in an unplanned move) and excitement (our new place is at least as nice, and it’s quite a thrill to finally become owners rather than renters!)
I’ve also been accumulating books. I guess I stress-book-shop? I’m sure at least a few of you can relate! So my next book updates should be a little heavier. For this week though, here is part of what was added to
the shelves the moving boxes; catching up with Sarah Dessen, finally reading the conclusion to Anna Godbersen’s series, and… The Elite. Yes, even though I didn’t really like the first book. I was struck with the need for a light dystopian read this week, and I just knew this would fit the bill perfectly!
What did you add to your shelves recently?
What it’s about :
Then an invitation lands on Libby’s doorsteps, an offer she surprises herself to accept : to move in with an eccentric aunt she has barely met, and help her with the work on her farm. It’s a complete change of scenery for Libby, but it might be just the thing she needed to finally move on.
My Thoughts :
You know you’re reading a great book when you don’t want it to end – and it is exactly what happened with The Lost Husband, which has been one of my favorite books to read this year! It’s true that I came in with some high expectations : I had read numerous positive reviews about the author’s previous work, and friends had recommended her to me many times. I am so glad I finally cave; in a style slightly reminiscent to Sophie Kinsella and Jennifer Weiner, Katherine Center offered here a cute, moving and at times funny story about grief, family and love.
I can’t say I’ve ever been a widow with children, yet I found myself relating to Libby from the start. Her voice is honest and straightforward, and she is certainly complex. Though she is long past the initial grief her husband’s death left her in, Libby still lives with the weight of it all, which only accentuates her flaws and her strengths.
But Libby’s story, while offering some serious thoughts on grief and moving on, isn’t heavy with sadness and regrets. Instead, we get to know her and her kids, as well as the new people in her life on the farm. It’s colorful and charming, with a bit of mystery (her aunt hides some secrets of her own, as do her new friends). While I did think she adjusted quite easily to the life on the farm, I’ll admit it seemed to suit her.
I loved her kids and her relationship with them. I loved that she sometimes questioned her decisions or her mothering, even though she didn’t know how else to do things. I loved that the kids were kids : they talked and acted like them and I completely believed they were their age. Her relationship with her aunt was also perfect; a few quirks and a lot of love is how I would describe it.
And I can’t not mention the romance. In some ways, O’Connor is the typical guy you would imagine in a romance novel; a bit secretive yet manly, they have a push-and-pull relationship for most of the novel. Yet it worked beautifully without making me feel like I was reading the biggest cliché ever. Katherine Center can definitely make magic happen!
I don’t think I need to insist any more about how much I loved this book! It was such a quick read, too; perfect for the beach, or a nice day under the sun. I was enchanted, and I know, with absolute certainty, that there will be more Katherine Center in my future reading.
I would gladly take suggestions as to which title this should be, if some of you have read the author before!
The Lost Husband is available for sale right now! Thanks to Ballantine Books for generously providing a digital copy of the book for this review.
From Goodreads :
My Thoughts :
I’ll admit; I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Reached, after being so bored with Crossed. I’m still glad the series is ending here though, but it was a fun ride for that short while.
Last books in a trilogy are difficult to comment on without revealing too much about the book itself, but also about the previous ones. In this case particularly, I feel that I am mostly repeating myself from my reviews of Matched and Crossed: I’m still not a fan of Ky, Cassia still does nothing special for me (good or bad), I still sort of like Xander. So there is really nothing new for me to say about the characters or the author’s writing.
The narration in this book was split between the three main characters and, surprisingly, I actually liked that. While I felt the the voices in Crossed were indistinguishable, here I loved hearing their three different stories (well, not so much Ky, but whatever). It’s not that they had three very distinctive voices, but they had different lives, which helped keeping my interest up a little.
What surprised me most though, was how passive this book felt. Maybe I was spoiled by all the wonderful, constant action of Insurgent and Prodigy, but I kept turning the pages waiting for something big to happen, and it didn’t, really. Well, their lives certainly changed, but their was no “OMG” moment for me as a reader.
I loved the new characters though, and loved to have Cassia back in the city. I truly enjoy the worldbuilding in the series, which is a bit more complex and developed than in some other YA dystopian series I got to read. And I liked how it ended for Xander, mostly.
In the end, for me the series concluded the same way it began; entertaining, light, interesting worldbuilding.
In other words : it was okay.
And now I’m on to something (hopefully) better!
Series Reading Order :