Monday, 6 April 2020

March Reads: 8 Mini Book Reviews! (Mindscape Reviews)




Hi Guys! Hope you all are doing okay. Being at home has been good for me. So good that I got to read EIGHT BOOKS in the past month. I haven’t been this proud of myself in the recent past. What’s even better is that I LOVED THREE BOOKS, HATED TWO BOOKS & the rest THREE were AVERAGE. I don’t think I have read so many books in a month and loved at least three of those! Check out the mini reviews!


THE BEST!
~~ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE~~
This is hands-down one of the best books I have read this year. I had bought it long back, but never took to reading it. But, when I finally started, 5 pages in, I knew it would be amazing. It was. This novel written by Anthony Doerr won the Pulitzer Award for Fiction in 2015. It is a beautiful story in the historical fiction genre, set in France during WWII. There are two story lines – Marie-Laure & Werner Pfenning. Reading this novel gave me a lot of hope. It’s the kind of book that you just need to read! I have rated it at 5/5 on Goodreads. I checked the ‘Pulitzer Prize winning Book’ category by reading this book.


~~AND THE MOUNTAINS ECHOED~~
Unlike Khaled Hosseini’s earlier 2 novels, this one is a little bit different. It does revolve around the people of Afghanistan, but instead of 2 main characters, it is made up of little stories of a lot of people of Afghanistan that nicely tie up together. What is common in all three is that they will have you surging with all the emotions & leave you all cried out. The story writing, as always, is wonderful. The author knows how to play with words & readers’ feelings. If you haven’t read it already, you definitely should! I have obviously rated it at 5/5 on Goodreads.

~~SEA PRAYER~~
I read Khaled Hosseini’s Sea Prayer immediately after I finished ‘And the Mountains Echoed’. I just did not want to live in a world where I had not read EVERYTHING written by KHALED HOSSEINI. Sea Prayer is a piece of art with amalgamation of words with painting. It is an illustrated book which is written about the refugee crises. It’s a letter from a father to his son. The wonderful illustration are by Dan Williams. I rated this book at 4/5 on Goodreads. By reading this, I have checked the ‘A Book based on a True Story’ category.

~~INTERPRETER OF MALADIES~~
This was my first book by Jhumpa Lahiri. It had been on my TBR for a LONG TIME. I just started reading the e-book out of nowhere & I was hooked! It is a small book with a collection of 9 short stories revolving around Indian based abroad. All the stories are heart-warming & touch base with Indian culture. I absolutely loved some, but I wasn’t a fan of 2-3 stories. Be that as it may, the writing is so beautiful. I have never quite read something so wondrous that could touch me even when I cannot relate to it. I rated it at 4/5 on Goodreads. This book checked the category of ‘A Book of Short Stories’ from my Reading Challenge. I’m keen on reading her book named ‘Unaccustomed Earth soon enough!


THE AVERAGE!
~~THE BELL JAR~~
I had started this book & given up on it many many times. But, this time I finally completed it. I thought it was quite average & overhyped. Goodreads describes it as ‘Sylvia Plath's shocking, realistic, and intensely emotional novel about a woman falling into the grip of insanity. The Bell Jar is an extraordinary accomplishment and a haunting American classic.” As with most classics, I didn’t think it to be as great as most people think. I rated it at 3/5 on Goodreads. From my 2020 Reading Challenge, I checked the category of ‘A book mentioned in a TV Series (Little Fires Everywhere)’ by reading this one.

~~THE SILENT PATIENT~~
The Silent Patient is a psychological thriller & actually a debut novel by Alex Michaelides. It won the Goodreads Choice Awards Best Mystery & Thriller. It’s the dark & twisted story of a woman named Alicia Berenson. It was a good debut novel. Even though there were some obvious misses, I have rated it at 3.5/5 on Goodreads. The thing I liked was how it is an UNPUTDOWNABLE book. By reading this novel I have now ticked the ‘A Debut Novel’ category form my 2020 Reading Challenge!


THE WORST!
~~HOUSE OF THE SLEEPING BEAUTIES AND OTHER STORIES~~
I read this book on a colleague’s recommendation. It is written by a Japanese author & is translated to English. After having read 3 of Murakami’s books, I thought I will explore more Japanese authors, but it didn’t go so well. I usually love WEIRD stories, like in Kafka on the Shore. But, this one was way too weird & not for me. It is comprised of three short stories, each one more bizarre than the last. I rated it at 1/5 on Goodreads. I checked the ‘Recommended by a Friend’ category from my 2020 Reading Challenge by reading this book.

~~THE ATLAS OF REDS AND BLUES~~
The thing that most bothered me most about this book was the writing style. What Goodreads mentions as ‘lyrical prose’ is nothing but ‘lazy writing’. It is a different style for me to read, yes. But, I am very open to new styles especially when it comes to books. This one just didn’t do it for me. The story is butchered into a million parts. It is really difficult to understand the link of one thing to other. The Atlas of Reds and Blues is not written well enough, in all terms: novel style or prose style or metaphorical style or social matters style. I cannot stress how difficult it was to read the book. It was pointless & fails to set a tone with the American or Indian or any reader. I rated it at 1/5 on Goodreads. This book was in none of my Reading Challenge categories, so I put it under ‘A book with Blue cover.’


I will write a book review for 'Where the Crawdads Sing' soon enough. I am currently reading 'A Little Life' by Hanya Yanaghara & also re-readin Harry Potter, because why not!

Until next time,

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