Latest NetGalley Reads

I received these books from NetGalley for review purposes.

Bennington Girls Are Easy: A Novel by Charlotte Silver This book follows best friends Cassandra and Sylvie from their time at Bennington College through their 30s, where they have to deal with how hard it is to make a life for yourself in New York City. Both characters are completely unlikable and the plot goes nowhere fast. That may be the only thing that redeemed this book for me though. Life wasn't easy breezy for these girls or for their friends who never really had to worry about money. I just wish they were a little bit nicer and more relatable. 

Before We Were Strangers by Renee Carlino Matt and Grace were in love in college, but their careers took them separate ways and they don't reunite until fifteen years later when Matt places a missed connection on Craigslist. I was excited about it in the beginning, but it became too cliche and predictable. I just don't love plots surrounding misunderstandings. Talk to each other! And the supporting characters, one in particular, were super weird. People seem to love this book though, so it's probably just me. 

The Life and Death of Sophie Stark by Anna North This story is told by the people closest to Sophie (a talented, but strange, filmmaker) during different stages of her life. She was hard for me to relate to, but the book redeemed itself with interesting narrators. It's well-written, but very drawn out. 

The Life Intended by Kristin Harmel Kate's husband died in a car accident twelve years ago and is now planning her wedding to Dan, but she starts seeing her first husband in her dreams and can't seem to move forward. I'm not really into the whole parallel universe thing, especially when it comes to sappy rom-coms, and I figured out the ending within the first few chapters. I also felt like there was too much mindless dialog. 

Bream Gives Me Hiccups by Jesse Eisenberg This collection of short fictional stories was pretty great. Some are in the form of text messages, emails, and restaurant reviews, which I thought was fresh and fun. He's an excellent writer and I laughed out loud a few times, though not every single story did something for me. The book was unexpected, in a good way, and I'd read more from him in a heartbeat. 


SMD @ lifeaccordingtosteph said...

The last one sounds interesting even though I am typically not a fan of short stories.

Karen Peterson said...

Jesse Eisenberg wrote a book? And it's funny? He has the personality of a wet sponge. I'm shocked.

Jana @ Jana Says said...

Jesse Eisenberg amuses me and I generally love his movies and even though I'm not a fan of short story collections, I'll probably put this one on my radar since you're not the first one I've heard say good things about it.

Before We Were Strangers is on my list but I think a couple of others reviewed it for Show Us Your Books and it got a similar lukewarm reception to what you though. So maybe I'll push it down the list.

Kristen @ See You In A Porridge said...

it's not just you! the misunderstandings drove me insane for before we were strangers. i wanted to smack them all.
hmm. i really am not sure if i will like the life intended. i am a bit of a sappy rom com kind of girl so maybe i will like it.