Welcome to another WWW Wednesday! This meme is hosted by Taking on a World of Words. To participate, just answer the following three questions:
What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?
I’m currently reading…
The Night Olivia Fell
by Christina McDonald
This is a NetGalley ARC for a January release. It follows the story of a teenage girl named Olivia and her mother Abi, alternating viewpoints between them. Abi’s sections take place after the night of Olivia’s apparent accident which has left her brain dead, and Olivia’s sections are through flashbacks leading up to the accident. So far, this feels eerily similar to Reconstructing Amelia, but I’m withholding judgement until I see where it’s all going.
Maybe in Another Life
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
This one is a quick read with an interesting premise. It follows the protagonist, Hannah, through two wildly different story lines, hinging on whether or not she leaves a party with her ex boyfriend one night. I think we’ve all thought about how seemingly small choices can set us on a path that changes everything. What if leaving for work at one time vs. two minutes later is the difference between being in the right place or the wrong place when a horrible accident takes place? What if you’re scheduling college classes and the best friend you haven’t met yet is in the 9:00 AM class while you’re considering taking it at 10:00? Maybe in Another Life is kind of a fun thought experiment that takes this premise and runs with it. Hannah’s life in either scenario bears little resemblance to the other. Both have challenges and joys that have nothing to do with the single decision that set her on that path; what was the “right” choice?
The Gilded Wolves
by Roshani Chokshi
This is a super fun book and I really feel like I should have finished it by now. Oops. It’s a young adult fantasy novel with super interesting magic and world building, as well as lots of attention put into representation. It takes place in Paris in 1889 and has a fun heist story at the center of it. Basically, just read it. It’s good.
I recently finished reading…
The Air You Breathe
by Frances de Pontes Peebles
(Full review to come)
This was a book of the month pick over the summer that I finally made time to read, and I’m so glad I did. It’s a historical fiction novel which follows the story of Dores, a servant on a sugar plantation in Brazil in the 1930’s. She has a close but fraught friendship with Graca, the daughter of the plantation owner. The story opens when they are both young girls and follows them through adulthood as they bond over their shared love of music and dream of running away and becoming radio stars. If you liked The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, you may want to consider picking this one up.
Jodi Picoult used to be a favorite author of mine, but I’ve enjoyed her work less and less as time goes on, in part because her books have started to feel excessively formulaic to me. A Spark of Light sounded intriguing based on the premise (a hostage situation at a women’s health clinic which provides abortions) but it felt like the story itself was overshadowed largely by rhetoric surrounding both sides of the abortion debate. I know Picoult often writes her novels as a means to explore a particular hot-button issue, but in this particular novel it left the story itself feeling overly thin.
The Only Woman in the Room
by Marie Benedict
(ARC – full review to come)
This is another historical fiction novel, but it’s based on an actual historical figure, Hedy Lamarr. It took me a little bit to get into this one, but once I did, I could not stop reading. Hedy Lamarr (born Hedy Kiesler) escaped Europe while Hitler was on the rise and traveled to Hollywood to become an actress. She meets with success there, but it haunted by a sense of survivor’s guilt over what’s happening with the war, and is driven to find a way to help with the war effort. I really enjoyed this novel, but I was a bit disheartened over where it ended. Hedy Lamarr died in 2000 at the age of 85, but The Only Woman in the Room ends during WWII. If you are interested to know more about her later life, I highly recommend checking out the documentary Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story. As of this writing, it’s available on Netflix.
Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women’s Anger
by Soraya Chemaly
(Full review to come)
This is a collection of essays and it’s extremely clear while reading just how much research went into it. Chemaly cites study after study to back up her arguments, and also makes great efforts to be intersectional in her feminism. Rage Becomes Her addresses not just the oppression of women, but how it intersects with other factors such as race and sexual orientation.
by Earik Beann
This book will be released in January and I recently received an ARC through NetGalley.
“The world runs on ARCs. Altered Reality Chips. Small implants behind the left ear that allow people to experience anything they could ever imagine. The network controls everything, from traffic, to food production, to law enforcement. Some proclaim it a Golden Age of humanity. Others have begun to see the cracks. Few realize that behind it all, living within every brain and able to control all aspects of society, there exists a being with an agenda all his own: the singularity called Adam, who believes he is God.
Jimmy Mahoney’s brain can’t accept an ARC. Not since his football injury from the days when the league was still offline. “ARC-incompatible” is what the doctors told him. Worse than being blind and deaf, he is a man struggling to cling to what’s left of a society that he is no longer a part of. His wife spends twenty-three hours a day online, only coming off when her chip forcibly disconnects her so she can eat. Others are worse. Many have died, unwilling or unable to log off to take care of even their most basic needs.
After being unwittingly recruited by a rogue singularity to play a role in a war that he doesn’t understand, Jimmy learns the truth about Adam and is thrown into a life-and-death struggle against the most powerful mathematical mind the world has ever known. But what can one man do against a being that exists everywhere and holds limitless power? How can one man, unable to even get online, find a way to save his wife, and the entire human race, from destruction?”