April 2018 Wrap Up

I finally joined a book club! It's not a book club that meets up but it will make me read at least one book a month. I am a book behind but I'm trying. It's Reese Witherspoon's book club and I'm excited to join it. She's specifically picking books with strong female leads and I love it.

1. Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows, Balli Kaur Jaswal, 3.8/5

Every woman has a secret life . . .

Nikki lives in cosmopolitan West London, where she tends bar at the local pub. The daughter of Indian immigrants, she’s spent most of her twenty-odd years distancing herself from the traditional Sikh community of her childhood, preferring a more independent (that is, Western) life. When her father’s death leaves the family financially strapped, Nikki, a law school dropout, impulsively takes a job teaching a "creative writing" course at the community center in the beating heart of London’s close-knit Punjabi community. Because of a miscommunication, the proper Sikh widows who show up are expecting to learn basic English literacy, not the art of short-story writing. When one of the widows finds a book of sexy stories in English and shares it with the class, Nikki realizes that beneath their white dupattas, her students have a wealth of fantasies and memories. Eager to liberate these modest women, she teaches them how to express their untold stories, unleashing creativity of the most unexpected—and exciting—kind. As more women are drawn to the class, Nikki warns her students to keep their work secret from the Brotherhood, a group of highly conservative young men who have appointed themselves the community’s "moral police." But when the widows’ gossip offers shocking insights into the death of a young wife—a modern woman like Nikki—and some of the class erotica is shared among friends, it sparks a scandal that threatens them all.

No, this was not a compilation of erotic stories for Punjabi widows. I just want to clear up some confusion. I didn't exactly know what to expect but I wasn't going to skip the first book of the book club I joined. That being said this book was pretty good. It's hard to explain because this book was different from anything I've ever read. There was almost to much happening in the book for me to keep up. In the beginning it was slow and the characters were building up and then it went a hundred miles an hour. This book is a romance, mystery, family drama and a progressive story. There were moments when it was hilarious and then it became serious. This book is from two perspectives and the book could have done without one of them. Having two perspectives made the writing seem choppy and sometimes confusing. If I wasn't busy with school and had time to read it in one sitting it might have been different. I really did enjoy it though. There were times when I was laughing so hard I couldn't breathe and then I was trying to figure out the mystery. I think what made me give it a lower rating was the ending. There was so much build up and the ending wasn't that great. There were so many loose ends that needed tied up. I guess it was the author's intention to leave you hanging but it does nothing for the story. I guess there could be a sequel but that would be a hit or miss. Overall, not bad for a first book club pick.

2. The Light We Lost, Jill Santopolo *Did Not Finish*

“There are people we come across during our lives who, after they drift out of our worlds, drift out for good. Even if we see them again, it’s a quick, meaningless hi and how are you? There are other people, though, with whom things pick up right where the relationship left off, whenever we run into them. The level of comfort—it feels like no time has passed.”

Lucy and Gabe meet as seniors at Columbia University on a day that changes both of their lives forever. Together, they decide they want their lives to mean something, to matter. When they meet again a year later, it seems fated—perhaps they’ll find life’s meaning in each other. But then Gabe becomes a photojournalist assigned to the Middle East and Lucy pursues a career in New York. What follows is a thirteen-year journey of dreams, desires, jealousies, betrayals, and, ultimately, of love. Was it fate that brought them together? Is it choice that has kept them away? Their journey takes Lucy and Gabe continents apart, but never out of each other’s hearts.

Me not being able to finish this book has nothing to do with the actual book. The characters are amazing and the writing is unique and special. I just don't think I should be reading a book like this right now. I will most likely pick it up again someday but I can't read it for now.



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