The July LibraryReads list was announced the end of last week. Only one of them is one that I have mentioned so far. I don't know if that is good or bad but you can decide that.
Number one on the list is Kitchens of the Great Midwest: A Novel by J. Ryan Stradal. This debut revolves around a great chef and how she became who she is. Chef Eva Thorvald is described by various characters in her life from her birth up to present day. Her mother ran away early in her life and her father raised her to enjoy food as much as he. Eva ends up so incredibly popular that people wait years for one of her dinners and pay $5000 per person. Reviewers overwhelming have loved this title. They said "it delighted and charmed me" and it was "hilarious without being cynical, touching without being overly sentimental, and wholly original." Give it a try and see what you think.
Paula McLain, the author of the popular The Paris Wife, has Circling the Sun which made the list. This one is a portrayal of Beryl Markham, an English woman who lived in Kenya and became an airline pilot and horse trainer. Markham is a real person who was the first to fly across the Atlanta west to east. If you liked the movie Out of Africa, then this book is for you. Said to be an outstanding book club pick and "a gorgeously written page-turning historical novel."
Next up is a romance, Kiss Me by Susan Mallery. This is the 17th in the series that takes place in Fool's Gold, CA. Phoebe Kitzke's is suspended from her job for doing a favor for a friend. She pledges she will never do that again when her best friend asks her to come help on the family ranch in Fool's Gold. Zane Nicholson has been talked into taking tourists on a cattle drive and when Phoebe shows up, he isn't thrilled. But then he is. Said to be great for romantics.
And now more romance with Jill Shalvis' Second Chance Summer. This is the first in a series that will be taking place in Cedar Ridge, CO. Lily Danville takes a job at the hottest resort in her hometown as much as she didn't want to be there. Aidan Kincaid is an old boy friend who allowed Lily to walk away 10 years ago. He wants a second chance. She doesn't want to give it to him. Hmmmm - I think we can guess who wins that one.
Kathy Reichs' Speaking in Bones was on last weeks list. As I said last week, this is the 18th Temperance Brennan novel. She investigates a theory on some unidentified bones. A must read for Bones fans.
Next is Chevy Stevens' Those Girls. A story about the bond between sisters. The Campbell sisters have a rough life on a range with a father who is always gone unless he is home, drunk and abusive. Their landlord threatens to call Family Services and after a particularly bad homecoming with their father, the girls take off with a gun and a truck. There, they get into more trouble and end up kidnapped. On their escape, they run and change their names. 18 years later, one of the sisters goes missing. It brings up memories of their past.
Then we have Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid. 29 year old Hannah Martin moves back home to LA to try to figure out what she wants out of life. Her best friend takes her out to a bar on her first night where she runs into an ex boyfriend, Ethan. When her best friend asks her if she is ready to go, Ethan offers to drive her home if she wants to stay. The rest of the story is told in alternating chapters about what happens when she makes that choice. Consequences, consequences, consequences.
Lissa Evans has Crooked Heart on the list. This is really a dark comedy that takes place in World War II Britain. Noel is 10 years old and has lived with his godmother (a opinionated ex-suffragette) since he was 4. On her death, he is evacuated from London and sent to live with Vet Sedge in St. Albans. Noel, a well read, intelligent child, and Vet, a well meaning, less than honest single mother, make a good team scheming to make some money. Said to be "hard to put down" and "completely captivating and utterly charming".
Love Lies Beneath by Ellen Hopkins is next on the list. I am not exactly sure how this one make it on the list. Reviewers seemed to really like it but be disappointed in the ending. Tara is a 40 year old divorcee (having been married 3 times). She breaks her leg in a skiing accident and meets Cavin, her handsome doctor. A steamy relationship starts to develop but then Tara notices a van following her; she experiences a break in and starts receiving threatening texts and emails. What is Cavin hiding?
Last on the list is Leanne Brown's Good and Cheap: Eat Well on $4/Day. This is an interesting book.
Brown was working on a master's at NYU and for her project, she figured out how well a person can eat on the $4 a day given by SNAP (the government's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). The result is this cookbook. Wonderful pictures and good recipes. Take a look.