Hey guys! Hope you’re all having a smashing week. I was gliding along, enjoying myself at a lunch time movie Wednesday when I got the dreaded call from school, only 10 minutes into the film (Lion). I headed over, picked up Emmy, who then vomited in my car and continued to be sick all afternoon into the night. She’s much better now, but that certainly through a wrench into my week. But hey, it’s Friday!!!! And that makes me smile. As we head into the weekend, I thought I’d give you some books to add to your to read list, because both I’m going to tell you about today earned good reviews from me. Let’s head into the book reports: Everything I Never Told You & The Rosie Project.
Let’s start with Everything I Never Told You since that’s what I read first. Celeste Ng spins the tale of the Lydia Lee, a teenager who we know from the get go has died and whose body has been found in a nearby lake. The story takes place in the 1970s and follows Lydia’s family before and after her death. James, her father, is a Chinese American whose parents emigrated to the US to give James a better life. All his life, James has struggled to fit in as he’s always felt like the only Chinese person. His dream for his children is that they have fulfilling social lives with lots of friends and busy schedules. Lydia’s mother, Marilyn, is a caucasian American woman, who was brought up by a single mother who earned a living as a home economics teacher and thrived on domestic life. Marilyn dreamed of becoming a doctor and worked her tail off, but met James and fell in love and became pregnant, putting her career on hold to raise her kids. Her dream is that her children become doctors and scientists, and work hard. The children are all half Chinese and feel very much like outcasts at school. Nath, Lydia’s older brother, feels overshadowed by Lydia who seems to be the apple of her parents’ eyes. Nath is closest to Lydia and knows more about her than they ever will, and knows that she’s been hanging out with Jack, a troublesome teenage boy. He’s headed to Harvard, where he’s just been accepted, to study space; and he can’t wait to get away. Hannah is the little sister, sweet and more perceptive than her parents know. As this story unfolds, we see how the family deals with grief as well as the mystery of Lydia’s death. We learn more about who Lydia truly was versus who she pretended to be. She was a beautiful blue eyed Asian girl who tried her best to be what everyone wanted her to be. My biggest takeaway from this book was to let my kids dream their own dreams, to not put pressure on them to be who I want them to be, but to let them be who they want to be and lead the life that will feed their souls. This book was definitely somewhat sad, but such a good read, and so relevant to today’s world.
The Rosie Project was recommended to me by my friend Tricia (who also happens to have killer style). To be honest, this book is not one that I’d have picked up myself. I tend to gravitate towards romantic comedies written by women (yes, I discriminate), and this one features a male author; but I am so glad I trusted Tricia because I just LOVED this one! The Rosie Project follows the story of Don Tillman, professor of genetic science at an Australian university. Don has barely any friends, is extremely socially awkward, super practical, follows a regimented schedule, and sees the world as black and white, with no room for gray. He begins what he calls “The Wife Project” and creates a questionnaire so that he may meet his perfect match- someone who will fit perfectly into his lifestyle. Shortly after he begins The Wife Project, he meets Rosie who asks him to help her find out who her biological father is. Her mother passed away when she was a child, her stepfather she declares a jerk, and she knows that her birth father comes from a certain pool of people and she wants to find him. Don agrees to help her and in the process finds himself confused with his feelings for her… she’s everything he is not looking for in a wife. She smokes, swears, drinks, does things spontaneously. This book was laugh out loud funny to me; I found Don’s social ineptitude absolutely charming and hilarious. It’s a must read! Thank you, Tricia!
Next on my list is Night Film which I just took out of the library, thanks to a reader (Hi, Blair!) who recommended it. It sounded dark and creepy and right up my alley. I’m looking forward to diving in this weekend! I am also looking forward to beer and trivia tomorrow night! I stink at trivia, but I am pretty good at drinking beer. Cheers to the weekend!