I’ve always been a reader. According to my mom, I learned to read before I went into kindergarten and before that I was memorizing books so I could read them to myself. In 7th grade, I was reading at a 12th grade level. But it wasn’t until I hit my junior and senior year of high school when I really started getting interested in books other than fantasy (like Harry Potter) or sweet and clean romance novels. When I was in high school, I took an AP Literature and Composition class, which introduced me to different genres and I found that I actually liked a lot of them. Since then, I’ve branched out and read YA fiction, historical fiction, fantasy, classic literature, sci-fi, distopic and others. My brain gets bored if I read too much of any one genre so I try to pick up a variety of books when I stop by the library. In the last three weeks, I’ve read three different books and all were about different topics.
The first book I read was Heartless by Marissa Meyer. I took this book with me on my trip to Orlando and got about halfway through it. If you’ve read the Lunar Chronicles (Cinder, Scarlet, Cress and Winter), and liked how the classic tales were retold, then Heartless will probably appeal to you.
Heartless is a prequel to Lewis Carrol’s Queen of Hearts in Alice in Wonderland. It is the story of seventeen year old Catherine, or Cath, who is the daughter of a marquee in Wonderland. Her greatest dream is to open a bakery with her friend, Maryann, where she can bake and sell her delicious pastries. But Cath has caught the eye–and stomach–of the king and he intends to propose to her at a ball. She is horrified, runs away and faints, only to find herself in the arms of the new, and very handsome, court jester, who she is instantly attracted to. Cath knows her parents will never agree to a courtship with Jest so they enter into a secret courtship. But in a land where magic thrives, can Cath escape her destiny?
I came upon this book when I was asking around for recommendations of what to take with me on my trip. I would put this book into the historical fiction category, although about 1/3 of it takes place in modern day. The reason I chose this book was because it talked about a part of US history that isn’t discussed often, coupled with foster care. From 1854 to 1929, orphan trains used to run from the east coast into the mid west carrying children who had been orphaned or abandoned to be adopted by families who were looking for children. (It was run by the Children’s Aid Society and was a precursor to today’s foster care program.) Unfortunately, many of the children who were adopted were treated more as servants rather than part of the family and the system in place was underfunded and not very well run.
Orphan Train is told from two different perspectives: Vivian, a 91-year-old woman reflecting on her early life as a past-rider of the orphan train, and Molly, a seventeen year-old girl who is about to age out of the foster system. As punishment for trying to steal a book, Molly is required to do community service hours to keep her out of juvie. Vivian Daly has an attic full of trunks from her past that she’s asked Molly to help her sort through and as she does so, Molly finds that she and Vivian aren’t all that different from each other.
*Note: If you are interested in another book dealing with foster care, I highly recommend The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh. So good! You can read my review HERE.
Another author that was suggested to me by a friend was Beth Kendrick. She writes chick lit and all her stories have dogs in them (but not as the main character). Originally, I wanted to read The Lucky Dog Matchmaking Service, but it wasn’t available at the library so I grabbed this one instead.
Emily McKellips grew up in a chaotic home environment. As an adult, she’s worked hard to have a stable and successful career and her dreams of marrying the perfect man and living in a house with a white picket fence are about to come true. But shortly after arriving in Valentine, Vermont at a little resort hotel, things start going wrong. Her mother and future mother-in-law begin fighting with each other, her fiance is distracted and her ex-husband, Ryan, shows up unexpectedly. Everything that Emily has fought for is about to collapse. But the irresponsible and headstrong boy Emily left behind ten years ago is now a successful film producer who still has feelings for her. She thought she had life all figured out, but the next seven days just might change her mind and her heart.
Next up on my list to read is Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls, and Everything in Between by Lauren Graham. I’ve heard from a lot of people that they really enjoyed this book so I’m excited to dive in and see if I agree.
Also, I’m linking up for the first time with the ladies who host What I’m Reading Wednesday. You can click on any of the links below to link up as well or just take a look at what everyone is reading. Maybe you’ll find a new book!
What are you reading? I’d love to hear!