Monday, October 2, 2023

September Books

I read three books this month.

Sparks Like Stars by Nadia Hashimi

This book was very good but also kind of "meh".  The story starts during the coup in Afghanistan in the late 1970s. One of the survivors of that night later grows up in the United States.  We experience the trauma of that night long ago and how it echoes throughout their life.  I thought the story was interesting and I liked the main characters, but I also felt like I had heard previous stories about Afghanistan before so it didn't feel novel to me.  That said, I do always appreciate hearing about different parts of the world.

Next was When We Lost Our Heads by Heather O'Neill.

Dear Lord, what a weird book.  I'm not sure how this ended up on my reading list, but it's Canadian so it was probably on one of those end of year lists from the Globe and Mail or something. I did not enjoy this book and although I powered through and finished it (unlike The Beguiling last month), I could not wait for it to be over.  
The book is about the 1800s in Montreal, one rich blonde girl, and her best friend, a brunette with less prestige.  They have a magnetic chemistry but when something tragic happens, the brunette is sent away and they are separated.  They end up back together in Montreal at some point with a variety of other characters.  I'm not sure if their love affair was supposed to be shocking or what, but I just couldn't care about them. They were both psychopaths in my opinion. 

And then Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

Finally, a winner! I have liked this author's other books so when I saw this on the library shelf I knew it was a safe bet.  This book is about four siblings in the early 1980s.  They live in Malibu and they all surf.  The novel is set during the day of their annual party and we go back and forth between the party prep and happenings and the story of their parents and upbringing. It's a pretty simple story but it was entertaining and worth the read. 


  1. Sparks Like stars is one I have waiting to read.

  2. Too funny. I really loved When We Lost our Heads, I just was so tickled by the general mayhem of the atmosphere and the Marie Antoinette parallels, but I had to abandon Malibu Rising a few chapters in. Just did not do it for me.

  3. Hooray for finding a good read out of the three books. I had a laugh reading your review of When We Lost Our Heads!