This month I did REALLY well. 9 books at 2,932 pages. Yes, that’s averaging nearly 100 pages a day. Which is way more than my New Years resolution. So yay me! Here we go...
Mary Poppins collection (Mary Poppins, Mary Poppins Comes Back, Mary Poppins Opens the Door, and Mary Poppins in the Park) by PL Travers (1024 pages). Yes, I bought almost all of the Mary Poppins books in one book! They were delightful! Different than the movie, but just as enjoyable. Did you know that Jane and Michael had twin younger siblings, John and Barbara, and a baby sister, Annabel? Or that some of their adventures with Mary Poppins actually were just Mary Poppins and Bert? Or without Bert? Or adventures that were only in the book? Or only the movie? The movie does a great job of condensing some things (Bert just has one job in the book and there are other characters with his other jobs) and adding depth to others (their mom isn’t a suffragette in the book). But all in all, a good time. Mary Poppins is a little sharper than in the movie and far more vain. But still the most delicious nanny ever. And the other books were great too. I always wanted to know what happened to the Banks after Mary Poppins left the Banks, and what happened when she came back. Now I know! I’m also super excited for the new Mary Poppins movie!!! I finished in 7 days.
China Rich Girlfiend by Kevin Kwan (479 pages). When I found out that the book Crazy Rich Asians was the first in a trilogy, I knew I had to read the rest of them. Sadly, BAM only had the second of the trilogy when I went to my Happy Place the other day. I mean, sure, it’s because the third one hasn’t been released in paperback yet. But that’s beside the point. The third one must be ordered! In this book, Nick and Rachel are still together and engaged. Then Rachel gets the best wedding gift ever- the identity of her birth father! She and Nick go to Shanghai for the summer to spend time with her new family. And Rachel learns, again, that there’s rich. And there’s China rich. Where dropping several hundred million on antique art is commonplace. So much excitement, so much drama amongst the elite of the elite. Nick’s family still isn’t thrilled about his marriage, but some of them have their own issues going on. We got to revisit old friends and meet some new ones. I really enjoyed it (as evidenced by the speed with which I read it). I can’t wait for May and the third one to arrive! I finished in 5 days.
Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty (356 pages). Atypical Moriarty. No mystery, no starting at the end and going back to the beginning (well, sort of, but not the normal way she does it). Cat, Lyn and Gemma Kettle are triplets. Their thirty-third year of life is nuts. Cat is married and happily employed doing PR for a chocolate company. Lyn is married, with a daughter and stepdaughter, and happily running her own business. Gemma is a free spirit. They are quite an interesting threesome. It’s hard to say much about the plot without giving most of it away. But suffice it to say, there’s marriage troubles, children troubles, job troubles, family troubles and triplet troubles. This would have been a great pool read. Instead, it was a court read. I finished in 2 days.
The Passenger by Lisa Lutz (302 pages). “Tanya Dubois” knows that her current life is over when she finds her husband dead at the bottom of the stairs. She has to go on the run. And not for the first time in her life. She roams around the country, changing names and backstories frequently. Along the way, she befriends Blue, another woman with a hidden past, and Dominic, a local sheriff. As her past begins to close in on her, she decides to return home, the place where it all began. And the secrets that are uncovered are shocking! There were so many little twists in each section of her life. So many little stories. Honestly, I didn’t like the first 50 pages/day 1 of reading. But after that, I could barely put it down. Hence the finishing it quickly. I just wanted to know what had happened to force her to be on the run! I finished in 3 days.
Out of Oz by Gregory Maguire (563 pages). I didn’t know there was a fourth and final volume in the Wicked novels. So of course I had to buy it! Conveniently forgetting that sometimes, I don’t like Maguire’s writing. He can be a little convoluted. This was the story of Rain, granddaughter of Elphaba (the Wicked Witch of the West for those of you not in the know). She interacts with Glinda, Brrr (the Cowardly Lion), Dorothy, and a host of other characters. It was nice to revisit some of Maguire’s characters. But on the whole, I didn’t enjoy it. Especially the ending. The ending PISSED. ME. OFF. And that’s all I’m going to say about that. I finished in 11 days.
Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn (208 pages). The (fictional) island nation of Nollop lies off the coast of South Carolina (what what!). The island is named for native son Nevis Nollop, creator of the famous sentence “the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.” As the letters of this sentence slowly fall from Nollop’s statute, the Council decides that Nollop is speaking to them from the grave and no longer wants them to use those letters. But as more letters disappear, the people wonder how they will manage and when is enough enough. It’s told through letters between Ella and her family and friends. And looks at the ridiculousness of rules and what people can do when they decide to stand up to the powers that be. It was so creative, such a fun way to look at words. And wondering if I could be creative with words if my use of certain letters was limited. I mean, the author stops using the letters when the characters have to! Hilarity with words ensued, at least for me. Or should I say “phor me.” I finished in 3 days.
This month’s favorite was ......Ella Minnow Pea, simply for the creativeness of the story. It was also a very easy read (at least until the letters really started disappearing and I found myself having to sound words out because of how they were being spelled!