November Reviews

This month I read three books, bringing my yearly total to 65 so far, 7 shy of my goal of 72. I would feign trepidation if I had more energy right now (I just ran 3.5 miles after a looooooong day, so the reserves are spent), but, honestly, I'll make it happen. It's who I am. If I was 37 shy I'd balk at the notion a bit more, but 7? I got this. Would it have been a tad more helpful if I would have knocked down five in November as planned? Of course. But, here we are 

The first book I finished was Daryl Gregory's Spoonbenders, which I was a little unsure about, since it is sci-fi book. Verdict? I really enjoyed it and hope there's a movie some day (Wes Anderson? Hello?). The story spans through three generations, starting off with a married couple who may or may not have psychic-ish powers, which may or may not be passed down through their lineage. It's fun, it's creative, and it's a unique look at family bonds.

Also in the sci-fi vein, but very, very different, was Her Body and Other Stories by Carmen Maria Machado. Man, I loved these stories. Most of them started off fairly typical, but then there'd be these sci-fi-esque kind of twists, some of them more obvious than others. The first in the collection is a take on the woman who wore the ribbon around her neck, anther a collection of episode synopses for Law & Order SVU, in which things take a bit of a turn. I can't wait to read Machado's memoir in 2020.

The final book I was read was The Affairs of the Falcons by Melissa Rivero, the story of an undocumented family in the US who is struggling big time in New York City. It's an interesting look at the layers of struggles they faced; being scared of immigration officials, poverty, wanting what's best for one's kids, navigating the social construct of one's community, drama with extended family members, a lack of control over one's body, and struggles within a marriage (and all of this is happening to one woman, dear god). Frankly, it was pretty heartbreaking, which makes me feel almost guilty when I have to say that I've seen better novels within this genre. It wasn't bad, but some of the pacing was off.

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