Historical – Gritty – Interesting
Last Dance at the Starlight Pier is set in during the depression, so be prepared for a more somber tone. Evie is effectively an orphan who is trying to make it on her own. After getting kicked out of nursing school, she enters the world of dance marathons. I had never heard of the dance marathon wave that hit during the depression. It was a way for desperate couples to try and win money when they had nothing left. They would literally dance for days and weeks only taking a 10 minutes break every hour. This is what I enjoy about historical fiction, learning something in a way that is fun. Other than that the story was kind of heavy, and a little long, but a strong female lead carried you at least to the end. Thanks to NetGalley for the free ARC.
Mature Main Character – France – Wild Ride
A Grand Old Time reminds us that we are never too old for adventure. The 75 year old, Evie (yes, another Evie!), is tired of being confined to her nursing home and longs for adventure. So she just walks out the door! What happens next takes her to a bookmaker, a vineyard and a camper! While her son tries to chase her down, Evie finds love and friendship and a freedom she thought had passed her by.
Ensemble – Heartwarming – Friendship
The Authenticity Project physically sat on my shelf for a long time. I had loved the cover and the premise, but for some reason never picked it up. I am so glad I finally did. The fantastic group of characters- Julian, Hazard, Alice and more – are brought together by a green notebook that would change each of their lives. By finally being real with each other and themselves, friendships are formed and secrets come out. This was a fun, easy read that also contains a life lesson for us all.
Heavy – Social Commentary – Revenge
That Summer seems to be a love it or hate it book. And I will admit, I hated it. I am sure that Jennifer Weiner was trying to weigh in on a topic she felt was important, but it came a little late in the game and the topic is already heavily covered. The characters are shallow and hugely stereotyped, none of them likable. I kept reading because I felt that surely there was a twist coming, but nope, it is exactly what you think it is from the first few chapters. And as most other reviewers have noted: despite the cover and the title, this is a heavy, dark social commentary about victimism and sexual assault, not a beach read!