“What were the chances you’d ever meet someone like that? he wondered. Someone you could love forever, someone who would forever love you back? And what did you do when that person was born half a world away?
The math seemed impossible.”—Eleanor & Park (via bookshelfmusings)
“Eleanor was right. She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.”—Eleanor & Park, Rainbow Rowell (via beautifullyricsandquotes)
Novel Nerds has been neglected for a long time now. I’ve been working like crazy this past year but I’m hoping to bring it back. Unfortunately Farhana and Radiya will no longer be part of Novel Nerds so bare with me. It’s definitely going to be a work in progress.
Book Review: The Wedding Gift by Marlen Suyapa Bodden
My rating: 4.5* (don’t think I could read this again - TRAUMATISED [in a good way if that’s possible])
What if, on your sister’s wedding day, you were given to her - as her slave?
When wealthy plantation owner Cornelius Allen marries off his daughter Clarissa, he presents her with a wedding gift: a young slave woman called Sarah.
The two girls have grown up together but their lives could not have been more different. Clarissa is white and is used to a life of privilege and ease. Sarah is black and is used to a life of slavery and hard work.
Forbidden by law to leave the plantation, Sarah longs to be free - in mind and in body.
But when she decides her future lies away from Clarissa, she sets in motion a series of events that will have devastating consequences for them both.
I was lucky enough to receive this book at Novel Nerds from Najma Finlay so thank you Najma!
I haven’t read a book like The Wedding Gift in a very long time. It brought back memories of my History classes in year nine or ten when we studied slavery in the United Kingdom. Needless to say, this was an emotional read.
I have to commend Bodden for writing this novel. It isn’t easy to write about suffering in such a way. And though slavery was abolished here in 1833, I think it is important we remember so we don’t let anything similar happen again. Unfortunately, it is all over the world but raising awareness is still important! See, this is why I love literature: it keeps memories alive.
The novel is told through Sarah Campbell- a slave- and Theodora Allen’s- wife of a rich plantation owner- point of view. This was a great choice in emphasising the equality between each and every human being as everybody suffers, endures, smiles and cries etc. I loved Sarah’s courage throughout this novel; one, truthfully, to lead by example. You have to fight for what you want for, regardless of the barriers and the consequences.
There were a few horrific scenes in here that I genuinely couldn’t bear to read. Whats’s worst is that these atrocities actually happened in real life hundreds of years ago and are still happening. It’s beyond me how human beings can cause pain and suffering on one another when you wouldn’t wish it on yourself.
Every human is capable of acting inhumanely but its novels like these that bring home suffering and emphasise the importance of compassion, respect and humanity. We may all look different, talk different and think different but at the end of the day, we’re all flesh and bones. The Wedding Gift will step on your heart a and show you just how fragile the lines of difference between nations and people are.
Highly recommend this book for women and men wishing to read a novel about courage, hope and a look at life under slavery in the USA.
In the words of Albus Dumbledore : ‘It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.’
This is also my last book review on Novel Nerds so yeah *sniff* Farewell brethren. I will be doing a goodbye post later to explain for that 1 person who cares (my mother).
Book Review: “I Think I Love You” By Stephanie Bond
So there’s some bad blood and bruised egos among the Metcalf sisters. At least they’re reuniting. A cause to celebrate? Not for Justine, Regina, and Mica. Their parents are splitting up and the family business is going on the auction block–just a little reminder of how much they really have in common…
Take the local bad boy who proposed to Justine, seduced Regina, and ran off with Mica. Add the unsolved murder they witnessed when they were young girls, and their vow to keep it a secret. Toss in their knack for being drawn to shady men, and there’s only one thing left for them to do–put the bonds of family loyalty to the test.
But it takes courage to outsmart a murderer, know-how to avenge the cad who betrayed them, and patience to bring their parent back together. Three talents. Three sisters. And who knows? Maybe even three new chances to fall in love when Justine, Regina, and Mica discover how much they’re willing to risk–and forgive–in the name of sisterhood…
How much I enjoyed the book: 7/10 How well I think it was written: 8/10
I Think I Love Youhas a completely deceiving title. I had initially downloaded the eBook thinking I’d be reading chick lit (okay, so I was hoping for something simple and predictable) but of course I was proven wrong! I hadn’t read the synopsis at the time of download so when I finally came to read the eBook and checked the synopsis I was more than intrigued at the idea of mystery, romance and above all sisterhood!
I found myself constantly surprised whilst reading which is a notable feat for a “quick read”. My curiosity was constantly poked and prodded and at various points I found myself unable to put my kindle down.
Book Review: “The Forever Girl: Sophia’s Journey” By Rebecca Hamilton
Sophia’s family has skeletons, but they aren’t in their graves.
At twenty-two, practicing Wiccan Sophia Parsons is scratching out a living waiting tables in her Rocky Mountain hometown, a pariah after a string of unsolved murders with only one thing in common: her.
Sophia can imagine lots of ways to improve her life, but she’d settle for just getting rid of the buzzing noise in her head. When the spell she casts goes wrong, the static turns into voices. Her personal demons get company, and the newcomers are dangerous.
One of them is a man named Charles, who Sophia falls for despite her better judgment. He has connections that might help her unveil the mystery surrounding her ancestor’s hanging, but she gets more than she bargains for when she finally decides to trust him.
Survival in his world, she learns, means not asking questions and staying out of the immortal council’s way. It’s a line she crossed long ago. If Sophia wants to survive the council and save the people she loves, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.
How much I enjoyed the book: 10/10 How well I think it was written: 9/10
The fantasy genre has become a host to an increasingly large number of novels with tired clichés, predictable characters and recycled plots. Yet, Rebecca Hamilton separates The Forever Girl from the rest: she thrusts the characters, their emotions and the world they live in firmly into an everlasting fragment of your heart.
Book Review: “Please Look After Mother” By Shin Kyung-Sook
PLEASE LOOK AFTER MOTHER is the story of So-nyo, a wife and mother, who has lived a life of sacrifice and compromise. In the past she suffered a stroke, leaving her vulnerable and often confused. Now, travelling from the Korean countryside to the Seoul of her grown-up children, So-nyo is separated from her husband when the doors close on a packed train.
As her children and husband search the streets, they recall So-nyo’s life, and all they have left unsaid. Through their piercing voices, we begin to discover the desires, heartaches, and secrets she harboured within. And as the mystery of her disappearance unravels, we uncover a larger mystery, that of all mothers and children: how affection, exasperation, hope and guilt add up to love.
Compassionate, redemptive and beautifully written, PLEASE LOOK AFTER MOTHER will reconnect you to the story of your own family, and to the forgotten sacrifices that lie at its heart.
How much I enjoyed the book: 9/10 How well I think it was written: 10/10
It takes a powerful book to leave me speechless and this is one of them. The book itself isn’t very long – 261 pages – or very difficult to understand; however the actual story and writing are so profound that I can’t even begin to comment on it without going into essay mode. On the other hand, Please Look After Mother was originally written in Korean and later translated into English which unfortunately makes for awkward reading at times. I also think this is very much a book that is more easily understood with prior knowledge of Korean society and culture. Luckily, I happen to be a sucker for asian dramas and have a pretty good awareness (I would never say I fully understand or know first hand though!) of South Korean culture. If you can look past both of those factors, I assure you Please Look After Mother is a must-read.
Book Review: Learn Love in a Week by Andrew Clover
Polly has been married to Arthur for ten years when she meets James Hammond. He’s her Road Not Taken. The One That Got Away. He’s also rich, and in one week he’s inviting her to his hotel in the country to give her the job she’s always wanted. He also wants her.
Polly is so tempted. Arthur is gorgeous, but he’s grumpy. He insists he can change, but can he? After ten years, can you learn to love? And if you could, would you still choose your partner?
I was sent Learn Love in a Week to review by Random House. I am so glad I got a chance to read this book, it’s a perfect summer read, very light, easy and hilarious.
Learn Love in a Week is a contemporary fiction novel, based in London about a married couple their marital problems, their fantasy man/woman, their best friends and children.
The main characters Polly and Arthur are extremely loveable characters. Of course they have their flaws and faults but doesn’t everybody? Truthfully that just makes you like them all the more. They have real problems with child care, money and fighting over who has to take the garbage out. Even the secondary characters such as Emma who is a self centred modern journalist and Malcolm a friendly builder were lovely.
The writing style was brilliant, Andrew really has a way of bringing the characters to life. I felt as if I was actually listening to these characters speak to me rather than reading. The pace was easy going, I didn’t find myself getting bored half way through like I do with other books.
The main reason I liked this book was because of the contemporary setting; the characters felt like real people with real problems that you come across in life. Heck, if I were the same age as these characters I’d love to be friends with them.
I particularly enjoyed the ending of the book as all the action is at the end. Fights, proclamations of love, near death experiences. It’s all there.
I was actually reading this on my break at work and my colleague asked me about it. After I gave her a brief overview she asked to borrow it. I was almost finished so I gave it to her the same day. I can’t recommend this book enough if you enjoy light hearted contemporary books.
All in all, I give Learn Love in a Week 4/5 and I would definitely read another book by Andrew Clover.
Disclaimer: This book is definitely for adults as there are quite a few sexual references.
World Book Night is all about spreading the love of books to people who don’t usually read. Thousands all over the UK are taking to the streets today to hand out books to strangers that normally do not read. So here at NovelNerds, we just had to do a giveaway.
Simply reblog this post and follow our blog here *for a chance* to win!
Note: UK residents only. We will be paying for P&P. The winner will be contacted at midnight! :)
May your eyes be strained by words, Your mind filled with a kaleidoscope of images, Your sanity challenged and your heart melted and broken By all the glorious books we are blessed to hold!
World Book Night/April 23rd in the UK is all about encouraging people who don’t normally read to…well…read! People all over the world go and give books [usually their favourites or those listed on the link below] to try and widen the brethren-ship amongst us bookworms. People who give away books for free? THE BEST KIND OF PEOPLE.
Click on this World Book Night link to find out more about what April 23rd 2013 means and for events happening near you!
HAPPY READING :D
Oh, and stay tuned for our World Book Night giveaway!