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The Week in Review: 06.21.2019

June 21, 2019


Between the Covers

Finished last week:

I may just be the last person on Earth to read EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU by Celeste Ng but better late than never.  As I read it, I wondered why I waited so long.  It’s the story of the Lees, a Chinese American family, dealing with the death of Lydia, their beloved daughter.  Both parents attempted to mold Lydia into the girl they wanted her to be and, as they grieve, the family learns she was different than they all thought.

Ng pieces together Lydia’s life with enough tension to keep readers flipping the pages.  Her writing is fabulous and I found myself mourning for Lydia right along with the Lee family.  I thought the book was moving, thought-provoking, and sad.  I had a lot to say about it as I read it so I think it would generate a great discussion for book clubs.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)


I’m sure everyone is familiar with Margaret Wise Brown’s book, GOODNIGHT MOON, but did you know she wrote many other picture books?  COUNT TO 10 WITH A MOUSE is the story of a little mouse who decides he need to learn how to count.  He dashes through holes and discovers three fish, four monkeys . . . well, you get the picture.  Little ones will enjoy Kirsten Richards fabulous illustrations and the rhyming and repetitive nature of the narrative.  I thought the book was lovely, except nine was represented by 9:00 on a clock and ten is not represented by anything at all.  I know when Vance was young, we would have taken the time to count the fish, the monkeys, etc.  Still, this is a great book to introduce youngsters to counting. (Review copy provided by Media Masters Publicity.)


I’m usually not crazy about love stories but I was completely charmed by THE GIRL HE USED TO KNOW by Tracey Garvis Graves.  Simply put, Annika and Jonathan met at chess club in college and dated for a while.  They go their separate ways after college and are reunited several years later by a chance encounter in a grocery store but they don’t know if the spark is still there.  There’s obviously more to the story than that but I don’t want to reveal too much about it.

The story alternates between Annika and Jonathan’s points of view and from 2001 to 1991, filling readers in on their relationship.   I found the story compelling and fell in love with Annika and Jonathan and Annika’s roommate, Janice.  This book made me shed a few tears so have tissues handy as you read it.  Be sure to pick this book up!  (Review copy provided by St. Martin’s Press.)

Currently reading:

On the Screen

Not much of anything.

Off the blog

  • Carl and I went to visit my 91 year old aunt.  We’ve been so busy we haven’t been able to see her for a few months.  As always, it was a pleasure to spend time with her.

  • I finished my shell puzzle!
  • Carl and I met with a lawyer to start the process of redoing our wills.  It’s been over 27 years, so I think it was well past time to get this done.
  • We walked at least three miles every morning and I averaged almost 16,500 Fitbit steps a day.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

23 Comments leave one →
  1. Erin Cook permalink
    June 21, 2019 8:16 am

    I was pleasantly surprised by The Girl I Used to Know too!

  2. June 21, 2019 8:16 am

    I love Margaret Wise Brown’s books! I also enjoyed Everything I Never Told You.

    How great that you could visit your elderly aunt…

    Enjoy your weekend and your books.

  3. June 21, 2019 8:32 am

    I also loved The Girl He Used to Know. Charming characters. Great job on the puzzle! I look forward to your thoughts on your current reads. Have a nice weekend!

  4. June 21, 2019 8:51 am

    I read Everything I Never Told You and led a book group discussion of it. As I recall (it was a couple of years ago), we had a good discussion. I went on to read her next book and liked it as well. I’m curious to read The Girl He Used To Know and hope to get to it this summer. Have a good week!

  5. June 21, 2019 9:05 am

    I loved Everything Never Told You and my book club had an excellent discussion. The Girl He Used to Know was one of the cancelled library holds I mentioned in my post yesterday… guess I’d better get bacon the list! 😉

  6. Lloyd Russell permalink
    June 21, 2019 9:25 am

    I was a little disappointed with Everything. I think the buzz was so great that my expectations were too high. Having said that, though, I Liked Little Fires Everywhere a lot. So it was definitely worth reading the 1st one 1st.

    Lloyd (408) 348-4849

    On Fri, Jun 21, 2019 at 1:01 AM Bermudaonion’s Weblog wrote:

    > BermudaOnion posted: ” Between the Covers Finished last week: I may just > be the last person on Earth to read EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU by Celeste > Ng but better late than never. As I read it, I wondered why I waited so > long. It’s the story of the Lees, a Chinese Americ” >

  7. June 21, 2019 10:33 am

    Hmm! Everything I Never Told You does sound like it would make good reading for a book club … I know I’m already imaging what the various members of the book club I go to would make of it.

  8. June 21, 2019 3:16 pm

    I loved both of the books you loved and I don’t think I knew that about Margaret Wise Brown. I am so glad you got to see your aunt! There is nothing on tv to watch at all but I am still finding lots on Britbox. Have a great weekend!

  9. June 21, 2019 3:40 pm

    I love that puzzle! You are very Blessed to still have your aunt (and your mom) with you. Is your aunt your mom’s sister?

  10. June 21, 2019 8:19 pm

    Redoing a will always seem like such a huge endeavor, but it’s so important! Good luck.

  11. Beth F permalink
    June 22, 2019 5:29 am

    So glad your visit with your aunt fun. I have Ask Again, Yes on my list.

  12. June 22, 2019 6:43 am

    I loved Everything I Never Told You. Each of us tries so hard as a parent to be a good parent, and yet we always fall short. This book would be a great book for a book group, I think.

    We went so many years without a will. When we finally put it down on paper, it was easier than I thought. My brother-in-law passed away in January without a will, and what a mess he left for my sister-in-law.

    Margaret Wise Brown interested me so much that I read a little bio of her. Like many women who were writers in the past, she was ahead of her time.

    Have a great week.

  13. June 22, 2019 7:53 am

    I think I remember Margaret Wise Brown from my childhood, though not “Goodnight Moon” which I remember from my daughter’s childhood. I should check out more info about her. Like you, we’ve been getting our financial stuff in order — lots of professional advice needed. But I think we are there.

    best… mae at

  14. June 22, 2019 10:52 pm

    We are on another (short) roadtrip and I packed more books than I can possibly read while we’re gone, but one that I plan to start right away is The Girl He Used to Know. I should be finished with The Beautiful Mystery (Louise Penny) by tomorrow and I’m eager to dive into my stacks!

    That puzzle looks impossible! Good for you! And good for you to update your wills. We did ours a few years ago, but I’m thinking we should have them reviewed since we have moved to a different state.

  15. June 23, 2019 10:16 am

    Wow, wish I could walk as much as you. Sounds like you read a lot of books, if you enjoy Celeste Ng, you might like her newer novel as well.

  16. June 23, 2019 5:09 pm

    I totally agree withyour review of The Girl He Used to Know, it is charming. I can’t wait ot hear what you think of Ask Again, Yes, It’ sone of my favorite books of the year.

  17. June 23, 2019 5:46 pm

    I have The Girl He Used to Know. Everyone has said good things about it. I hope to get to it very soon.

    The puzzle looks great and I’m sure it was a lot harder to do than it looks. Puzzles always get me.

  18. June 24, 2019 12:06 am

    I strongly agree with your assessment of Everything I Never Told you. I also felt that it would generate some great book clubs discussion. I haven’t read her second book yet, but I’m looking forward to it.

  19. June 24, 2019 12:12 am

    Everything I Never Told You sounds excellent. The shell puzzle is fantastic. Have a nice week ahead!

  20. June 24, 2019 9:03 pm

    My nephew and his wife listened to the audio of Everything I Never Told you during their drive to our son’s graduation and told me I MUST read/listen to it. I have Count to 10 too and am anxious to check it out. I love that shell puzzle!

  21. June 27, 2019 8:19 pm

    Ask Again Yes is our book club read for August so I can’t wait to see what you think. I can’t go in to a story knowing I’ll cry, otherwise The Girl He Used to Know looks good 🙂

  22. July 8, 2019 2:32 pm

    Sounds like you had a full week. I hope you enjoyed the visit with your aunt.

  23. bookingmama permalink
    July 12, 2019 6:54 am

    Maybe I’ll pick up THE GIRL HE USED TO KNOW next! Sounds like a good one!

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