Sunday, November 30, 2014

2014 book 291

Laura Lippman's Hush Hush
The latest in Lippman's long-running Tess Monaghan series is all about MOTHERHOOD, and there is a LOT going on. Tess and her PI partner Sandy are hired by their lawyer friend/uncle to work on security/do some investigating for an old friend of his, Melisandre, who ten years ago was acquitted of murdering her baby daughter on grounds of insanity. Now she is back in Baltimore, filming a documentary and trying to reunite with her other two daughters, who she hasn't seen in a decade. Meanwhile, Tess is dealing with parenting a three-year-old, and is receiving increasingly upsetting notes. I'll say that the story is entertaining and moves along at a good pace, but Melisandre is amazingly unbelievable as a character. Her ridiculous name is the MOST plausible thing about her, which makes this book unsatisfying in a lot of ways. Also, the past secrets that were revealed were not nearly as earth-shattering as I expected, and, again, everything with Melisandre feels a little . . . off. I kind of need to dissect the ending of this with someone else, because I can't decide what I'm supposed to take away from it. B.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in February.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

2014 book 290

Rachel Joyce's The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy
Joyce's latest is a sequel/companion to The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, and it's just as excellent. And made me cry on an airplane. As Harold walks 500 miles to see Queenie again for the first time in twenty years, she writes a letter recounting her own life story--including her secret love for him, her odd relationship with his troubled son, and her friends in hospice. I think this would work just as well as a standalone, but it's just GREAT to see these two books make up two halves of a lovely (and sad) whole. A/A-.

Friday, November 28, 2014

2014 book 289

Tessa Dare's A Lady By Midnight
I liked this one so much that I stayed up to finish reading it, b/c I couldn't wait till tomorrow to see how things worked out! So the attraction between Colonel Thorne and orphaned music teacher Kate Taylor has been building for a couple of books, and when a bunch of aristocrats show up claiming to have information about her past, he immediately claims to be her fiance--just to protect her, of course. Butttttt he also knows some stuff about her past that he's been keeping hidden! The mystery element definitely adds a lot to the plot here, and I really liked how Dare plotted this one. A-.

2014 book 288

Paula Hawkins' The Girl on the Train
I like books in the Rear Window/Girl in the Green Raincoat mystery/thriller subgenre, and this was a pretty solid example. The titular girl on the train is Rachel, who observes a couple every morning while on her train commute--a couple who lives just a few doors down from where she lived, before her husband kicked her out to be with another woman--when she one day sees the woman with a man who is not her husband, and then finds out the woman disappeared the next day. Rachel is an alcoholic, and definitely one of the overzealous types of amateur investigators (seriously, she does soooooo maaaaaany dumb things), which is not a great combination. The novel is also narrated in turns by the missing woman and by Rachel's ex's new wife. Things build pretty well, and the end was really strong and suitably creepy. B/B+.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in January.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

2014 book 287

Tessa Dare's A Week to be Wicked
The second book in the Spindle Cove series was much more up my alley--it picks up with two characters from the first book, a rakish viscount and a bespectacled geologist (she was one of my favorite parts of the first one). She's determined to present her latest findings (a dinosaur footprint!) to the Royal Geologic Society symposium in Scotland--and persuades him to come alone, pretending they've eloped. He's eager to get out of town (not to mention super into her lush lips), so agrees with this mildly ridiculous plans, to the usual effect. There are some really nice moments here--I particularly liked how into her intelligence he is--and this book continues setting up a couple of other romances in the town. Very enjoyable. A-.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

2014 book 286

Jenny Erpenbeck's The End of Days
Erpenbeck's latest has a Life-After-Life sort of conceit--there are five sections, and in each one a young woman dies/manages not to die the way she did last time/dies in a different way. This manages to cover a lot of 20th century Eastern European history--she's born in the early part of the century in Galicia, only to die as an infant (this section actually worked best for me, as Erpenbeck describes how her Jewish mother/grandmother and her Christian father deal with the death). The second section, set in Vienna, didn't quite work for me, and the third and fourth deal heavily with Communism, which lost me a little. The last section was kind of bittersweet and I thought was a nice coda to the story.  Pretty solid in general, and a nice companion to Atkinson's work, but not quite as moving. B/B+.

2014 book 285

Marissa Meyer's Cress
The third Lunar Chronicles book brings Rapunzel--the titular Cress, a computer hacker trapped on a satellite--into the mix, as the political situation heats up. My favorite character is still an android, but I have high hopes for the next book, which looks like it'll center on a legitimately crazy Snow White. B/B+.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

2014 book 284

Marissa Meyer's Scarlet
The second book in Meyer's Lunar Chronicles brings Little Red Riding Hood into the mix, trying to track down her kidnapped grandmother with the help of a fighter named Wolf, as her path brings her closer to Cinder. I guess I should note here, since I didn't when I reviewed the first one, that there's a lot of political stuff going on, as the queen of the moon people (they have weird psychic powers) REALLY wants to be empress of whatever China-related land mass exists in this future world (and presumably then take over Earth). Anyway, this one was fun, if a bit too romance-heavy for my personal taste. B/B+.

Monday, November 24, 2014

2014 book 283

Lydia Millet's Mermaids in Paradise
And here's a late contender for the Alicia's-favorite-books-of-the-year list! This book was AWESOME. It starts off just fine, as a matter-of-fact sort of woman narrates the events leading up to her wedding/honeymoon, all perfectly normal and practical--at least until her husband befriends a marine biologist, and the two of them discover a bunch of MERMAIDS. Say whaaaaat. And then . . . the marine biologist is found DROWNED IN HER BATHTUB! And their video footage disappears! But the thing is, it's all kind of . . . hilarious? Like farcical, almost? But also, wonderful. I was kind of like "huhhhh" about the very end but in general loved this. A.

2014 book 282

Marissa Meyer's Cinder
I have seriously checked this out of the library four times and only just now got around to reading it. It was pretty good! The writing is a bit awkward at times, and the plot is SUPER OBVIOUS, but the conceit--Cinderella as a mechanic/cyborg in far-future China--is interesting, and things move along at a good pace, and I was definitely emotionally invested in some androids. This is the first in a series that seems like it's bringing in a bunch of fairy tales (I'm pretty sure there were references to Snow White and Rapunzel) and the library has them all as e-books, so I'll probably read them eventually. :) B/B+.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

2014 book 281

Alina Bronsky's Just Call Me Superhero
Bronsky is one of those authors I have always meant to read, and her latest seemed interesting enough--it's about a teenage boy in Berlin whose face was savaged by a rottweiler, and now his mother is forcing him to go to a support group for "cripples" (I'm not sure if this a European thing or a narrated-by-a-teenage-boy thing, but there's a lot of ableist/homophobic language here). Naturally the group is all boys and one amazingly pretty girl that they all sort of fight over (except for the gay guy, who I wish we'd seen more of). Then a family tragedy calls him away from the group. Then there's a VERY weird reveal at the end that I really needed a lot more information about. I feel very puzzled about this book. B?

2014 book 280

Juliet Marillier's Dreamer's Pool
YAY it's the first book in a new adult fantasy series from Marillier! And right away you can tell it's gonna be a bit dark, as it starts in a horrible prison where a woman is finally about to have her say in court--only then the guard tells her she's actually going to be straight up killed in the morning. But then one of the Fey comes and promises to set her free, if she'll wait seven years for justice and go up north to be the healer of a small town and help anyone who asks. Which she does, accompanied by one of her her fellow prisoners. (These two are Blackthorn and Grim, which is the name of the series, and they're both broken and flawed and wonderful.) Meanwhile, the prince of said small town is finally about to meet his betrothed, and he is super excited, because they've been writing letters all about poetry and walks in the woods and her adorable dog--but when she arrives, she's . . . not what he expected. And her dog HATES her. Gee, could something be up? Can Blackthorn and Grim figure it out in time? Yes, it's a fairy tale mystery, and it's GREAT. Plus, there's no romance between the main characters, just a really nice friendship. It's all I've ever wanted from a fantasy book. A.

Friday, November 21, 2014

2014 book 279

Tessa Dare's A Night to Surrender
I didn't love that other Tessa Dare book I read, but she was so highly recommended that I decided to try one of her Spindle Cove books, about a community of mostly women (nascent feminism, yay!). In this first one, the community of women (which I really wish we'd seen more of) is invaded by some military men, leading to INSTANT romance/lust for the leaders of both parties. I think this is why I have generally not liked romance novels when I like novels with romance in them--there's not enough of a build. It's like, I met you and now all I can think is lustful thoughts about you, let's immediately make out and eventually get married. The two characters are actually really interesting--he's building a militia and dealing with a bad leg, she's, I dunno, helping ladies and leading the town. I did like how, while occasionally giving into their lust, they grow to like/respect each other, plus there are some really nice friendships and some very hilarious moments. I could have done with less of the "romantic brute" stuff, but in general, this was super frothy and super satisfying. B+.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

2014 book 278

Jacqueline Winspear's The Care and Management of Lies
Winspear--author of the Maisie Dobbs mystery series--has written a standalone novel, published to coincide with the centennial of WWI. I admit to not realizing this was a /novel/ for a large chunk of it, and kept waiting for one of the three main characters to get murdered. Haha! Anyway, the three main characters are a young bride, formerly a schoolteacher; her husband, a farmer; and her best friend (also her husband's sister), a strident political activist/suffragette.There's also a neighbor who becomes somewhat obsessed w/ the bride after talking to her for less than five minutes and then reading all her letters to her husband (I think we are supposed to feel for his loneliness, but I found this off-putting). I don't say this often, but I actually think this could have been a little longer--things felt a little abrupt. The end was also mildly perplexing. Still, it was fine, no major complaints. B/B+.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

2014 book 277

Tessa Dare's Romancing the Duke
Since I enjoyed those Courtney Milan books so much, a few people have suggested I might like Tessa Dare's stuff as well. This one was lighter on the social issues, but higher in hilarity/cuteness. It involves a 26-year-old "spinster" (sigh), famous from her recently deceased father's series of fairy tales, but sorely lacking in funds, who inherits a castle from her godfather. But . . . the castle is inhabited by a surly-but-handsome duke who certainly never sold the place. Adorable feuding and romance takes place. There's not much to the plot here, but the characters are likable, everything about the father's stories is great, and there's plenty of enthusiastically consensual sex (if you're into that sort of thing). I think I like my romances to have /slightly/ more to the story, but the writing here is strong and I'd definitely read more by the author. B+.

2014 book 276

Kimberley McCreight's Reconstructing Amelia
I've been meaning to read this one for a while--I think Arianne recommended it to me--so was pleased when the public library got it as an e-book. It's about a woman whose teenage daughter apparently killed herself by jumping off of the roof of her fancy school--only a month later, the woman receives a text saying her daughter /didn't/ jump, and starts investigating. Now, a fair bit of the plot involves technology only discovering things at the CRAZIEST times--there would be no story at all if the cops could, say, immediately trace an anonymous text message. But on the whole, this was well done--tons of insane private school drama--and private life drama as well. I admit to thinking things would go deeper than they did (is it a spoiler to say that the cop was just a cop, when I was sure he'd turn out to have a vendetta of his own and maybe not even really be a cop), but it was satisfying enough on its own. I mean, it was CRAZY. But satisfying. B/B+.

Monday, November 17, 2014

2014 book 275

Candace Fleming's The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia
It's this year's pick for Thanksgiving Sister Book Club! (We're doing a theme: after we talk about it, we're going to watch the cartoon Anastasia). I'm a big history nerd, but figured a YA history book wouldn't be too onerous for the less nerdy, and this has gotten great reviews. I will say that this  almost reads like a textbook, with sidebars and everything. (That's not an insult! It would be a very engaging and informative textbook.) That is, aside from the overuse of exclamation points (and I say that as a heavy user of exclamation points), which I felt were kind of out of place: They were invited to a ball! Workers earned 70 cents a month! The entire family had been placed under house arrest! etc.  Fleming does a great job showing the VERY great contract between the ridiculous lives of the royalty and the terrible lives of the working class, and everything else that led up to the Revolution. I mean, no matter how many books I read about it, I am constantly amazed at what a clueless ruler Nicholas was. I also appreciated the look at anti-Semitism and the pogroms that resulted--encouraged by Nicholas! Fleming doesn't romanticize him a bit in this book, which is a nice change. I did wish for more on the Grand Duchesses, but there's always The Romanov Sisters for a follow-up. And there's not really enough on how Lenin became a leader (there are a few short Lenin interludes, but I felt like the gaps were too large). She does do a great job of contextualizing the murder of the family, including the children (well, young adults/teenagers) and the family servants. Solid bibliography/endnotes too. But I do kind of feel like I accidentally read a textbook. A-/B+.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

2014 book 274

Kate Riordan's Fiercombe Manor
The message I often take away from historical fiction is: man, it sucked to be a woman in the past. This book does nothing to belie that: it centers on two women--one, in 1933, pregnant out of wedlock, sent to secretly have her baby with an old friend of her mother's, a housekeeper at a pretty empty manor house; and the other, the lady of the manor in the 1890s, also pregnant. Both stories are fairly compelling, and I think they balance each other out nicely. The hint of a mystery--waiting to find out what happened to the woman in the 1890s both through her POV sections and the other woman's investigations--works too. Solid writing and a really engaging story. A-.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in February.

2014 book 273

Kate Milford's Greenglass House
Milford's latest is a HUGE step forward over her perfectly serviceable The Boneshaker. Seriously, I straight up cried more than once. It centers on Milo, whose parents run an inn in a home formerly owned by a super famous smuggler--and smugglers still stay there to this day. They're expecting their usual quiet Christmas break (I guess Christmas is the slow season for smugglers), when all of a sudden a bunch of unusual guests turn up. The cook's daughter convinces Milo they should investigate all these strangers and what they're up to (not to mention a mysterious map) under the guise of/while playing a role-playing game. Secrets are revealed at a good pace, and I loved all the visitors (the three women were particular faves and honestly made me want to watch a movie version). Milford plants enough clues for the ending to land but still make you feel like "OMGGGG." And I thought the discussions of transracial adoption were pretty thoughtful (and timely for me, having just read this Toast essay just this week). Just all around a great story (and great stories-within-stories!) and super satisfying. A.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

2014 book 272

Sydney Taylor's Ella of All-of-a-Kind Family
Thanks to the intro of the Lizzie Skurnick edition, I now know that the final book in the series wasn't supposed to be the final book--Taylor had planned books focused on each of the girls, but died after completing this one. Sadface. Anyway, this one finds oldest sister Ella trying to decide between a singing career (on vaudeville--not quite her dream) or giving it up for the guy she's been dating since book two. This is actually handled with a lot of sensitivity--presumably because it's more than a little autobiographical (though Taylor left her dancing career to have a baby, she went back to music/writing when her daughter was a little older). There's also some sweet suffragette action here. Love this series and am sad to think of the ones that could have been.

Friday, November 14, 2014

2014 book 271

Courtney Milan's The Countess Conspiracy
The third book in the Brothers Sinister series brings to the forefront a couple of things that were brewing in books 1 and 2--namely, that rakish scientist Sebastian, an expert in the scandalous field of plant reproduction, is actually presenting the work of his good friend/love interest Violet. Yes, this book is all about SECRET LADY SCIENTISTS because obviously ladies weren't allowed to go to college and learn things and be scientists back in 1867. There's also a whole thing about Violet's horrible first marriage (she's a widow) getting in the way of their love, and Sebastian's problems with his older brother (not very interesting), but whatever, who cares about emotional issues when SECRET LADY SCIENTISTS are getting stuff done. There's even a really great mother-daughter moment (both previous heroines had deceased mothers). But mainly it's SECRET LADY SCIENTISTS. A-.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

2014 book 270

Courtney Milan's The Heiress Effect
So it turns out I like romance novels! Or at least, well-written historical romance novels that touch on the class system and political inequality, which this one is and does. In this second book in the Brothers Sinister series (after The Duchess War), our protagonists are the half-brother of the dude from the first book, trying to start up a career in Parliament, and a VERY wealthy young woman determined to fend off suitors until her sister comes of age (and they can then escape their well-meaning but horrible uncle together) by being purposefully (and hilariously) socially inept. Meanwhile her sister is secretly meeting and flirting with an Indian guy, and his is an outspoken suffragette. I really appreciate Milan throwing all these social issues into her novels--they really add a nice layer of depth/reality to the proceedings (not to slight the actual romance, which was very enjoyable). A-.

2014 book 269

Rae Carson's The Bitter Kingdom
One of the reasons I like the final chapter of this trilogy so much is that it leans so much more on diplomacy than on the boring and cliched battle scenes in basically every other high fantasy series (though there's also plenty of great action scenes). It's great to see a heroine who trusts herself and relies on her intelligence and skills as well as on her friends. And I do find the religion in this world so fascinating. Just a really well-done series, and I hope Carson has a new book come out soon.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

2014 book 268

Rae Carson's The Crown of Embers
The second book in Carson's Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy is a solid middle chapter--lots of action/romance/religion etc, and also lots of moving things forward and setting them up for the finale. On rereading, there are a couple of things I wish the protagonist had figured out sooner (The Power Was in Her All Along! and so on, both politically and literally, not to mention the big romantic realization at the end, like, get your crap together girl, you've been raised studying political alliances and whatnot, how do you only figure this out as a cliffhanger when you were handed the relevant information halfway through?). Still a fun read though.

Monday, November 10, 2014

2014 book 267

Rae Carson's The Girl of Fire and Thorns
I've been a little under the weather the past couple of days, which means it's time for comfort reading! Why a book about a girl with massive political and religious responsibility dealing with a major war = comfort reading, I don't really know, but I do enjoy this book a lot (despite all the emphasis on the protagonist's weight loss). And I am still grateful that the protagonist has a realistic lovelife, as opposed to YA books where teenage characters are instant 4-eva soulmates. I think I'm going to reread this whole trilogy and see how it hangs together.

Saturday, November 08, 2014

2014 book 266

Jo Walton's The Just City
I was super excited to see a Jo Walton novel come out so soon after her last one, and this one had a concept that really appealed to me. It's about Athena deciding to create Plato's Just City (from his Republic) as an experiment, and after trying to understand why Daphne has turned herself into a tree, Apollo decides he can do with some time as a mortal and enlists as one of the children (the others are slaves purchased for this purpose). The POV characters are Apollo (as a mortal boy), a brilliant girl (one of the slave children), and one of the "masters"--a woman from the early 1800s who longed for a place where she could be an equal/intellectual. And it's all fascinating, and really well done, and Socrates comes into it (I always picture him as the guy from Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure)-, and I LOVED it-and then right at the end there is a LENGTHY philosophical debate (I was not enough of a philosophy nerd to really enjoy this) and it just ENDS. Apollo is all, "well, a bunch of other stuff happened too, see ya, but let me end on a philosophical note." So, like, as a WORK of philosophy, or as a thought experiment, it's interesting, but as a novel, that ending was less than satisfying. And I prefer to read a novel. (I take back all complaints if a sequel is forthcoming.)*

*Thanks to author Jo Walton for letting me know a sequel IS forthcoming. :) All my complaints are rescinded and my grade is now A-/B+.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in January.

2014 book 265

Alethea Kontis' Dearest
The third book in Kontis' Woodcutters series (after Enchanted and Hero) focuses on empath Friday, the gifted seamstress sister--which comes in handy when she encounters the swan princes and their sister (Odette the Swan Princess and the Darling children from Peter Pan also feature in the story). The romance here was a little bit over-the-top for my personal taste, but the family stuff and the action/adventure stuff was well-done. Solidly entertaining read. B/B+.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in February.

Friday, November 07, 2014

2014 book 264

Courtney Milan's The Duchess War
Look at me, expanding my horizons and reading something that can only be classified as a romance thanks to no-spend November and public library e-books. I actually quite liked this--it's historical (it reads like a Regency but there's mention of Queen Victoria, so let's just say it's set in the PAST), about a woman with a secret past who acts all shy and mousy to get a husband and settle into a safe, boring, normal life--when she meets a hot Duke who finds her intriguing (he also has a fair amount of interesting stuff in his past). I mean, it's obvious (more or less) how things will turn out, but there are some good twists--and radical politics!--along the way. Plus some nice female friendship (and what seems to be a pair of elderly lesbians). And the writing is actually pretty strong, aside from a little bit of (I thought) unnecessary overemphasis on feelings and whatnot. I mean, I get what they feel, you don't need to keep explaining it to me. Still, I really enjoyed this. I especially liked the little nod to Austen. Apparently there are four books in this series and I already have the next one on hold at the library. :) A-.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

2014 book 263

Elizabeth Haynes' Under a Silent Moon
Haynes latest (after Into the Darkest Corner and others) is the first book in a new series, about DCI Louisa Smith, investigating the murder of a pretty and highly sexual young woman, as well as an apparent suicide that might be related. It's not toooo hard to figure out what's behind it all, but I appreciate Haynes' attention to detail on the police work aspect of things (she apparently used to work as a police analyst, which maybe explains why the love interest here is a highly capable police analyst). I will say that I was mildly frustrated at how unbelievably stupid and horrible one of the other detectives (and former love interest of Louisa's) was, but there were some other interesting side characters that I look forward to seeing in the next volume. Things end weirdly abruptly, but otherwise this was a satisfying mystery. B+.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

2014 book 262

Sydney Taylor's All-of-a-Kind Family Uptown
In the 4th All-of-a-Kind Family book, the family befriends some Irish neighbors (a handy reason to explain various Jewish holidays and customs to the readers), Sarah (the author's alter ego) tries for the history prize, and Ella's boyfriend goes off to fight in WWI. Because this is a kid's book, the war is moooostly glossed over, aside from war efforts at home, but that's still fairly fascinating. Every time I reread one of these, I'm just so grateful to Lizie Skurnick for also loving them and for having the power and ability to reissue them.

2014 book 261

Mallory Ortberg's Texts from Jane Eyre
Look, I'm a huge Mallory Ortberg/The Toast fangirl, and I loved Ortberg's pieces from this series on the Hairpin, so I was all over this book. (I like when she "clowns on the Western canon," ok?). And it's not just classics, there's a whole section of stuff like the American Girl books and Fight Club and other modern stuff (the Harry Potter one basically killed me). Obviously the ones inspired by books you've actually read work better (the Moby Dick and Cormac McCarthy sections pretty much lost me), but this is just really well-done and hilarious. So hilarious.

2014 book 260

Lionel Shriver's We Need to Talk about Kevin
This is one of those books I've been meaning to read for years (it came out like ten years ago), but wasn't entirely sure I could handle the subject matter (it's narrated by a woman in letters to her husband, about their son, a school shooter). And I was spoiled about the ending a long time ago. But hey, when you're doing no-spend November, you read whatever library e-books look interesting.  And it was very well done, if entirely chilling. I should have read this on Halloween, it's thematically similar to movies like The Omen (I mean, in a really loose sense). I really kind of want to discuss this with someone--the reliability of the narrator would be a hot topic for sure. And the terrifying-ness of Kevin. And the role of the Other in American society. I would, however, advise my parent friends maybe not to read it. Now I wonder if I'm brave enough to see the movie. A-.

Monday, November 03, 2014

2014 book 259

Brooke Davis' Lost and Found
As soon as I finished this book, I actually said out loud: "This book is CRAZY." And it is kind of crazy. It's about a little girl who was obsessed with death even before her father died of cancer, and now her mother has abandoned her in a department store. Soon she befriends a mannequin ("Manny") and a lonely old man, as well as the reclusive old woman across the street, and they go on a journey together. There are some great scenes here (I especially liked Captain Funeral and Captain Everything), and the writing is especially strong, but Agatha didn't quite work for me as a character. And, like I said, this book was a little bit crazy. But I liked it. B/B+.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in January.

Saturday, November 01, 2014

2014 book 258

Graeme Simsion's The Rosie Effect
The sequel to the very charming Rosie Project was problematic for me, because I HATE books where the entire plot would be cleared up by one honest conversation. On the other hand, I enjoyed seeing Don and his group of male friends help fix each others' lives. So this is kind of a comedown for Don and Rosie, but strong for everyone else? And the end is fine, of course, even if it does involve like twelve deus ex machinas (or whatever the plural of that is). I'd classify this as women's fiction if it wasn't written by a man. What is the category for feel good books written by dudes? B.

A review copy was provided by the publisher. This book will be released in December.