The Books I Read But Never Talked About Before My Hiatus: PART 2

book recommendations and books to read

 

As with Part 1,  I’m going to continue to BRIEFLY mention some of the books I read last Fall/end of 2016, before I was held hostage by my terrible first trimester of pregnancy, because they deserve to be mentioned and then hopefully I can get myself more caught up on what else I’ve been reading lately!

So let’s get started:

[Keep Reading]

Book Talk: A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

Book Talk: A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnisA Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis
Published by Katherine Tegan on October 6, 2015
Genres: YA Historical Fiction, YA Mystery
Also by this author: Not A Drop To Drink, The Female of the Species
Format: Hardcover
Source: For Review
Amazon/Twitter
Goodreads

I received this book for review consideration from the publisher. This in no way swayed my opinion of the book. Pinky swear!

 

 

 

Want an “at a glance” look at what I thought? Check out my Review On A Post-It or my “Final Thought”

 

A1

With a pregnant belly and family secrets buried in the depths of her mind, Grace Mae finds herself in an insane asylum in the late 1800’s. She keeps silent but her sharp mind is always alert. When she has a violent outburst she finds herself locked away in the darkest depths of the asylum next to a man who becomes her ally, as he can tell she’s a great mind, and helps her escape with a doctor who is dabbling in criminal psychology. They flee to an asylum in Ohio where they embark on their work and Grace finds friendship and strength in this new home of hers.

a2PERFECT FIRST HALLOWEEN-ESQE READ! Also, yesssss to loving another Mindy McGinnis book!!

a4I loved Mindy McGinnis’s Not A Drop To Drink so I was SO here for this book about something so completely different than that one…and I have to say I’m just so ready to read ANYTHING Mindy writes after experiencing both of these stories.

I thoroughly enjoyed it and could not put it down. It was a PERFECT October/Halloween read for those who don’t want scary but like a little mystery and an atmospheric setting that is equal parts dark/brutal (the mystery, Grace’s family secret, the conditions at the insane asylum) as it is heart-warming (Grace’s friends).

Specifically what I enjoyed:

  • Blend of historical fiction and mystery: I love historical fiction so I was definitely excited for this setting in the late 1800’s in Boston and small town Ohio. I hadn’t really read the blurb because I knew Mindy McGinnis + insane asylums + historical fiction was all I needed to know so I was pleasantly surprised by the thread of mystery in this one. Thornhollow reminds me of a quirky Sherlock-esque kind of character and I was so interested in their search for the killer and their delving into how the murderous mind works. I don’t want to say much but OH MAN for how the mystery ended up…not only who did it but how it all works out. GAH.
  • Insane asylum setting: Wow did Mindy McGinnis do a phenomenal job with the setting. I could picture these asylums — the cold, dark cells and the sounds of the patients. It was chilling. I just am so thankful to not have been alive in a time where it was so easy to throw women in these places for any reason that a man could say and it is their word vs the woman’s. We see two different asylums, the one from before she escapes and the one she and Thornhollow head to,  and they were pretty different from each other and I’m so glad that the bulk was spent in the more ethical asylum because the Boston asylum and their practices were just awful and I couldn’t handle Grace being there any longer.

[Keep Reading]

Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnis | Book Review

Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnisBook Title/Author: Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnis
Publisher/Year
: Katherine Tegen Books – September 24th 2013
Genre: YA Post-Apocalyptic
Series: As of right now, no, but I’ve heard possibly?

Goodreads | Twitter |Amazon

I received this from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way swayed my opinion. Pinky swear!

 

 

 

In Lynn’s world water has been scarce for many years. Her whole life revolves around surviving and defending the pond in her backyard — her source for survival — at any cost. The pond seems to be getting lower and lower thanks to droughts and winters that bring barely any snow and the threat of other people to the pond seems to be incoming when Lynn and her mom see smoke on the horizon and these strangers start to show their intentions.

I LOVED this book — like head over heels, can-I-buy-you-a-drink-you-sexy-thang type love. I’ve been yearning for a really amazing survival-esque story that wasn’t driven by anything paranormal or science fiction but by something that could really, actually happen. And friends, DING DING DING…we have a winner!

Mindy McGinnis did an amazing job setting the scene in this terrifying, dangerous world You can feel all the threats looming around Lynn and her mom as they protect their pond and try to survive — coyotes, strangers who want to overtake them for their pond, purifying water, keeping warm in the winter, etc. The day to day activities that Lynn and her mom had to do EXHAUSTED me. I can’t even imagine having to do all that work all the time and always be alert and on your game to make sure nobody is coming your way. It’s just Lynn and her mom and Lynn’s been taught to kill anybody who comes near the pond. The survival aspect of this novel felt totally raw and I just loved all the detail that went into it. It was all about survival.

I really adore Lynn as a character — she’s got smarts and skills — and she’s one of the truly strongest characters I’ve encountered in a while. There’s another character, Stebbs, that emerges in the novel that I REALLY loved and, as much as I loved Lynn, I loved this character to pieces. There are few characters in this novel but they all make quite an impact.

As much as I loved the characters and the survival aspect what I loved most about Not A Drop To Drink is this exploration of the mentality and the morality between what it takes to survive in this world. We see two very different mentalities in this novel — one person is all about the survival of the fittest and taking care of yourself and your family and then we see another character emerge (my favorite!) who believes that maintaining our humanity and helping one another is how you are going to survive. It was so well done and felt so authentic to what would really happen in this type of situation and made you wonder how you would act in a world like this where not everything is black and white.

Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnis is a frightening and raw story of one girl’s survival in a dangerous world where water is scarce and it is her job to protect the pond that keeps her alive from those who want to take it away from her — at whatever cost. I’ve been itching for a real, bare bones survival story and Mindy McGinnis all but served it up to me on a silver platter. I loved the exploration what it takes to survive in a situation like this — the mentality behind survival and that morality that makes us remember our humanity. It reminded me a lot of The Walking Dead and how it so aptly explores that very issue with morality, survival and how we keep our humanity.

 

Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnis book review

 

Let’s Talk: Have you read Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnis? Heard of it? Did you love Stebbs as much as I did?? I’m curious if you have any other recs that are really great survival type tales?

five-stars
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