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ashw21

ashw21

Joined November 2022

A coffee addict, a bibliophile, and a TBR that never ends!
review
ashw21
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Mehso-so

This was a fun chick lit novel about starting over, friendships and hardships. It is about walking in someone else‘s shoes literally and experiencing the other side of life that we have never experienced! I liked the women friendships in this story but overall didn‘t enjoy it as much as her other books especially the second half which dragged out a little for me!

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ashw21
The Soulmate: A Novel | Sally Hepworth
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Pickpick

I have a love/ hate relationship with this author. I haven‘t been a fan of her last few books but I really enjoyed this one. It was well-crafted, carefully plotted , a slow-burn mystery with great characters. This is about a family that seems so perfect when the book starts but as we delve in further, there are secrets and never as idealistic as the facade presents..

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ashw21
A Likely Story: A Novel | Leigh McMullan Abramson
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Pickpick

I really liked this family drama/ wealthy people behaving badly story set in NYC but there were more deeper themes of how it is like to be a child of a very successful parent, in this case an author.. also it gave great insight into the publishing world.

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ashw21
Independence | Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
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Independence, the latest novel from , is a historical fiction book done well set during the time of India's partition. This is a story of three sisters, all different from each other, and how their lives were touched and scarred by events around them. I really enjoyed this story on how the sisters balanced their love of family with their own aspirations. This story is so complex and was unputdownable!

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ashw21
Go as a River: A novel | Shelley Read
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Pickpick

Go As a River is an exquisite debut novel that is in my top reads of the year so far. Set in Colorado in the 1940s -1970s, the book provides a sense of place, of what it is like to be a woman, what it is to be a coloured person, a political backdrop, and a wonderful sense of nature. This book was such an immersive reading experience for me, the scenery was stunning and the writing was beautiful. It was poignant, charming and heartbreaking!!

11 likes1 stack add
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ashw21
Wandering Souls | Cecile Pin
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Pickpick

This book is a visceral read about three siblings who left Vietnam on a boat not long after the American troops left. The book looks at grief, loss and the effects on generations as a result of migration. The story is told from multiple perspectives and it is complex but in just under 250 pages, we experience the journey of a refugee leaving their homeland to a place they may never belong or feel wanted.

Bklover I think a lot of us can‘t begin to imagine what losing everything and starting over in a place where you aren‘t welcome could be like. I think if we did we‘d all be a lot kinder 1w
ashw21 @Bklover exactly! Books like these will help us understand when people make this difficult journey from their homes .. such a great book! 1w
12 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ashw21
Weyward: A Novel | Emilia Hart
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A story of three women, set apart by centuries who are somehow connected by their bond to the natural world and their magical gift to use nature to heal, sustain and create. All incredibly powerful but they constantly faced abuse and were taken advantage of by men. Their stories are connected and this is part of the mystery of this book. I was invested in all three women equally and in their stories. A book on the power of women and nature!

jlhammar Pretty photo! Looking forward to this one. 3w
BkClubCare Interesting cover 3w
ashw21 @jlhammar it was a very engaging read..hope you like it!
3w
ashw21 @BkClubCare I agree!
3w
19 likes1 stack add4 comments
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ashw21
Riambel | Priya Hein
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Set against the beautiful backdrop of Mauritius, the book exposes the country‘s history of white privilege. A young girl, raised in the slums quits school to help her mother who works as a servant for a wealthy, white family. She feels trapped in the same lives as her ancestors. This book explores racism, colonialism and heartbreak.. so atmospheric and compelling, I read this novella in just one evening!

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ashw21
Maame | Jessica George
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What an incredible debut!! A coming-of-age story of a young girl who is the main caretaker for her father who has Parkinson‘s. I was so incredibly moved by this book and I just inhaled it.. Maddie, the youngest in her family feels like the most responsible..This book is about grief, loss, guilt, family, work aggression , romance and friendship.. one of my 2023 favourites already!

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ashw21
Devotion | HANNAH. KENT
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I loved Burial rights and this has been on my list for so long. Beautiful and immersive writing of a community travelling across the world on an arduous journey. This story chronicles the hardships the community experienced and a love story of two young women. Heartbreaking and atmospheric. I really enjoyed this and I will read anything Hannah Kent writes !

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ashw21
Olive Kitteridge | Elizabeth Strout
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Pickpick

A bit late to the party I know, but so glad I read it.. I loved the flawed protagonist.. it really shows that we do not always have things figured out as we get older.. we can still have insecurities and baggage from the past. Loved the characters and small town vibes.. I have read her other series, my name is Lucy Barton including Lucy by the Sea and I will read anything Strout writes as I love her writing!

sarahbarnes I just read this one this past fall. She‘s an incredible writer. 1mo
16 likes1 comment
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ashw21
Seven Steeples | Sara Baume
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Mehso-so

An introspective story of a young couple who chose to leave Dublin to quieter surroundings to find a home away from the busy world, family and friends.. content in their solace, it is a thought provoking read on what we truly need in life.. loved the writing but just felt distant to the characters .. maybe that was the point.. but a worthwhile read!

BarbaraBB Sounds like a book I‘d enjoy. Stacking. 1mo
ashw21 @BarbaraBB Beautiful writing and imagery .. 1mo
11 likes2 comments
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ashw21
Brotherless Night: A Novel | V. V. Ganeshananthan
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Pickpick

This incredible story is told through a young girl, who is 16 years old and she lives with her four brothers and her parents in Jaffna, Sr Lanka. She yearns to be a doctor but this is not easy as the war erupts and there are multiple displacements. The family suffers grief, loss and extreme adversity. I recommend this book to anyone that is interested in the politics of Sri Lanka, the plight of the Tamils and wants an authentic voice.

Itchyfeetreader This sounds like my kind of book. Stacking! Thanks 1mo
ashw21 @Itchyfeetreader this book really resonated with me.. one of my best reads so far this year! I hope you like it too! 1mo
12 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ashw21
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Pickpick

A stunning and introspective story of a girl travelling through Japan with her elderly mother. A trip to find connection with each other lead to reminiscing about the past and their stories. Can the bond of a parent and child transcend generational and cultural differences? Our desires might be different, our vision on contentment might be different.. such a contemplative and meditative book! Beautiful imagery of Japan too! #2023reads #japan

Ruthiella This one is high on my list. Great review! 👍 1mo
BarbaraBB Wonderful review. I just read the book too and you describe it so well! 1mo
ashw21 @BarbaraBB Thank you so much and I loved your review too! What a gorgeous book and I am so happy it is getting so much attention! 1mo
See All 6 Comments
ashw21 @Ruthiella I hope you enjoy it, not really plot-driven but very contemplative! 1mo
sarahbarnes I‘m excited to read this one! 1mo
ashw21 @sarahbarnes I hope you enjoy it as I did! 1mo
15 likes1 stack add6 comments
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ashw21
Better the Blood | Michael Bennett
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Pickpick

Excellent crime fiction set in Auckland, NZ, the author examines the injustice of colonisation and the long-term effects on future generations of the Maori people. An impressive protagonist, a villain with a cause who you can sympathise with, a family story and a tensely plotted story made it all such a compelling read that I finished it in less than a day. #bibliophile#litsylove#alwaysreading#crimefiction#newzealand

Cathythoughts Great review! I love crime , I‘m off to look up this one now. 👍🏻😁 1mo
ashw21 @Cathythoughts I thought it was great! I hope you enjoy it!!! 1mo
12 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ashw21
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Mehso-so

This has been on my TBR for so long and I really wanted to like it.. if not for the murder mystery, I would have probably bailed on it.. the writing was great and I liked parts of it.. I did want to read it to get to the bottom of the mystery but not my favourite read

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ashw21
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Pickpick

This is a book that exceeded my expectations.. a book about family and a coming-of-age story in one. Ballet plays a central part in the story and the bond in the family. There is a betrayal and it made a compelling read to find out the cause/ what happened as the story switches back and forward in time. It is set during the AIDs crisis but very much a backdrop in the story. A beautiful character- driven novel with wonderful writing. #readinglife

CarolynM I loved this one too. Read it at the end of last year and it crashed its way into my top 10 of 2022. 1mo
ashw21 That is fantastic.. it really exceeded my expectations and I couldn‘t put it down!! 1mo
11 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ashw21
Fire in the Blood | Irne Nmirovsky
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rene Nemirovsky is becoming one of my favourite authors. This is the third novel that I have read written by her and it did not disappoint. The writing is lyrical once again and it develops slowly into what becomes a compelling read. It is evocative and thought-provoking. What we may think of idyllic, might not be what it seems behind closed doors. A great, quick read! #fireintheood#irenenemirovsky#bookrecommendation#biblioplhile

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ashw21
The Bread the Devil Knead | Lisa Allen-Agostini
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Pickpick

A harrowing read but powerful and ultimately hopeful in the end. This is a story of a feisty 40-year-old, Alethea, who has faced abuse in many forms all her life and is trapped in traumatic relationships. She is very much a loner and an avid reader. As she starts to make some meaningful bonds with some of her past connections and learns to make meaningful friendships, she slowly starts to make decisions to turn her life around.

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ashw21
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Pickpick

January #readingrecap #bookhaul .. Lanny, Travelling in a strange land, Love in the time of cholera, Shuggie Bain and Purple Hibiscus were my favourites in a month of great books!

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ashw21
Lanny: A Novel | Max Porter
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Pickpick


I loved Lanny who is such an endearing little boy and also loved the portrayal of motherhood, the small-town vibes and its colourful characters. This little gem of a novel is just above 200 pages and I am in awe of books like this and a few recent reads that really pack a punch. This story is heartbreaking, endearing, and compelling and has that unique mix of contemporary fiction with folklore and mythology.

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ashw21
Someday, Maybe: A Novel | Onyi Nwabineli
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Pickpick

A powerful debut about a woman who has just lost her husband to suicide: the grief is very intense but the writing is so beautiful and nuanced, it felt like I was with her through her grieving process. She is surrounded by family and friends, characters were well-developed and enriched the novel.. Her Nigerian heritage added a unique touch to the story, in how she handled her grief and her family's support to help her continue living her life.

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ashw21
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Pickpick

A gorgeous coming-of-age and romantic story of two teenagers , both misfits, lonely but very talented.. Out of boredom and their passion, they collaborate to produce art that is innocent in their eyes but becomes quite explosive in the town they live in. I really loved this exploration into the pre-internet era of young kids bonding over creativity and art.. an enjoyable read with unique writing style with well drawn characters!

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ashw21
Lucy by the Sea: A Novel | Elizabeth Strout
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Pickpick

Something so resonant and relatable about Elizabeth Strout‘s writing! I have loved all her books and this is no exception! This is a book where she explores the isolation and fears we felt during the recent pandemic and she writes so beautifully about her relationships and her emotions.. #elizabethstrout
#bookishlifestyle#reading#books

AvidReader25 I love this cover so much more! 4mo
ashw21 I like this too.. I just ordered a copy for my shelves .. 4mo
13 likes2 comments
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ashw21
Trespasses | Louise Kennedy
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A quiet but a compelling read set in Northern Ireland during the political turmoil of the 1970s. It captures a sense of place and history so well. Cushla, a Catholic Primary teacher crosses boundaries to protect one of her students. She also works at the pub where she meets a Protestant barrister and there is instant chemistry. This always was doomed and the events that played out made this a very gripping read!

12 likes1 stack add
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ashw21
Demon Copperhead: A Novel | Barbara Kingsolver
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Pickpick

Absolutely loved this modern retelling ! This story is about an orphan born to a teenage mother addicted to drugs. Demon Copperhead faces extreme poverty, an abusive stepfather, and terrible foster homes where he is forced into farm labour and becomes a victim of opioids. However, we see how resilient he is and the support of the strong women around him. The story shines a light on children born in these unfortunate circumstances with no help.

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ashw21
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Pickpick

This is a compelling story on the last duchess Lucrezia de Medici and her untimely death rumoured to have been killed by her husband. The story really spotlights women in history and adds depth to them, showing they were capable of so much more if they were given more opportunities and had less restrictive lives. A compelling book with gorgeous writing about a woman that was shown off in a marriage portrait but was ultimately a pawn in a game.

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ashw21
The Candy House | Jennifer Egan
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This book, hard to describe is a series of inter-connected stories set in the present and the future about the impact of technology. It starts off with a character called Bix who comes up with a social media platform where you can upload your thoughts to be shared with friends. The book has an unusual structure and a plethora of characters, some I couldn't keep track of but I enjoyed her writing which is very clever, creative, and fun.

3 likes1 stack add
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ashw21
Hotel Du Lac | Anita Brookner
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Intriguing, calming and elegant is how I would describe my first Anita Brookner novel.. Short novel but there is a lot of nuance and insight. I love the characters, the intrigue and a perfect escapist read set in a hotel which I love! I definitely recommend!

6 likes1 stack add
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ashw21
The Mad Women's Ball | Victoria Mas
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Set in the 1880s in Paris, this story highlights mental health and asylums. The story takes place in the Salpetriere asylum in 1885 Paris where the patients are mainly women. Most of these women do not need to be at an asylum but it had become very convenient to have a place to keep women who do not fit into the expectations of society. I really found this story very interesting and a part of historical fiction I didn't know much about.

2 likes1 stack add
review
ashw21
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Pickpick

This book will make you want to stop using social media or at least reduce your usage. The depths these platforms go to get you hooked is mind boggling. Focus and attention are on the decline in society and this is not surprising how easily distracted we are with our devices. One of my favorite chapters was the one on sustained reading which I think will resonate with all of us being readers. A great book which I haven‘t stopped thinking about!