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american wife & sister land & prep

Since one of my favourite things to read in blogs are book reviews, I thought that this year I would start talking about the ones I get through this year. I am a huge bookworm and always have been – there is nothing quite like escaping to a world that is not your own, and yet find pieces of yourself inside other people’s stories.

My current obsession is Oxfam Books. A charity shop, selling tons of books for a mere couple of pounds? Yes please. I recently discovered one right in my neighbourhood, which is both wonderful and dangerous.

Anyway, American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld is one that I had been meaning to pick up but never quite got round to. And one day, there it was, waiting for me on an Oxfam bookshelf. This is possibly my favourite thing about charity shops and their books – you never know what you will find.

I adored this book. The writing spoke to me, it was easy to read yet substantial, the story kept me interested and I felt a strange connection with the main character, Alice. Although the blurb reveals that the story is about her reflecting on her life and how she became first lady, it’s not really at all about her being the president’s wife. More than anything, it was an expanded coming-of-age story, about Alice and her life, in a much broader sense. I highly recommend it.

Now, another thing I tend to do – if I like a book by an author I’ve never read before, I go on a little binge-read of their other books. This time was no exception, and I found Sisterland on offer in WH Smith, and Prep in another charity shop.

Sisterland is, at the core, a story about the relationship between twin sisters, and also about the relationship between them and their close family and loved ones. Prep is about a girl who grows up in a prestigious boarding school, and learns the ins and outs of being a teenager and, basically, how to survive high school.

Quite frankly, I was underwhelmed by both. Sisterland was my least favourite – I felt like the plot was too weak, even if the central interest was not supposed to be the plot, and Prep was interesting enough but nothing mind-blowing. I did finish them both though, which I do try to do with every book I pick up, but some have been so terrible I haven’t been able to. So, that’s something!

If you’re interested in seeing what this author is about, I urge you to pick up American Wife. That was definitely worth a read, and I will probably try out whatever else she comes out with next, because I haven’t written her off yet. I do like her style.

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  • Reply Ellie

    Oh curious books! I've never heard of the author before 🙂

    January 28, 2014 at 10:05 am
  • Reply Ice Pandora

    Thanks for the book reviews + intro! I love reading books but sadly I sometimesjust don't have the time for it :c Xx

    January 28, 2014 at 5:43 pm
  • Reply Jane

    i just had a fun outing at a used bookshop this past weekend and began reading gone girl. i finished it last night and oh my goodness!! and i read american wife and i enjoyed it very much as well!

    January 28, 2014 at 5:45 pm
  • Reply jennie

    I love second hand books, I love how they've had a bit of a journey before you get to read them. I'll have to look into American Wife! Jennie xo | sailorjennie.com

    January 29, 2014 at 12:08 am
  • Reply Bridget

    I have read Prep and I too was distinctly underwhelmed. This resulted in me not bothering with any other books by Curtis Sittenfeld, but maybe I'll investigate American Wife now.B xx

    January 29, 2014 at 9:12 pm
  • Reply Marla Rogers

    YAYAYAYAY you have no idea how happy I am that you're going to do book posts too! I love reading book reviews too :] I'm so excited! Especially since you're a fiction girl and I need to get more into that genre :] I'll def add American Wife to my list!

    January 30, 2014 at 1:55 am
  • Reply Georgina Carr

    I nearly picked up prep the other day, I shall reach for American Wife instead. Great reviews xxwww.thelibrarian.co.uk

    January 30, 2014 at 10:46 am
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