Without much direction, I decided to start my month with re-reading The Hunger Games. If there was ever a book that just did it for me, it was The Hunger Games. I was an avid reader as a child but abandoned leisure reading in those busy motherhood years. I didn't have time or interest in books. When I went back to school, I would read fluff books between semesters. Then came The Hunger Games series igniting my passion and interest for really good books. I haven't stopped since. If you haven't read the series, I highly recommend it. I remember back when The Hunger Games series was trending, parents were questioning the appropriateness for middle grade and young adult readers. Having read the books twice, I feel like there really isn't anything overtly graphic to shield your middle schooler from. Yes, I know the premise is kids killing each other. Suzanne Collins writes with a gentle touch around those matters...for the most part. Ultimately, it's your call and your call should be respected. However, if you are a parent of a voracious reader and can't manage to preview everything before they fly through it then let them read this one.
Catching Fire, from The Hunger Games series was my second book in March. Another re-read and The Hunger Games sequel. In my opinion, Catching Fire is best book of the series. There is so much action packed into this book plus the story builds up to an eventual uprising against the current government. As a reader, you are always wanting to read one more page.
#3 The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena had a really strong start. I was captivated, stayed up too late, and read nearly half the book the first night. Lately, I've really gotten into the thriller/mystery genre and will continue to sprinkle them in to my monthly reading. I question my intelligence because I can never figure things out until the last 10 pages. While other reviewers use words like predictable and lame. What a treat for me though to be surprised! I'm rarely disappointed in a thriller/mystery. The Couple Next Door is a twisty novel about a couple who's baby is kidnapped and the ensuing investigation. At time it drags, then picks up, then repeats the cycle. The story seems to cover all the characters stories and experiences which makes it interesting. Overall, I thought it was a decent book. I would recommend it to anyone who dabbles in thriller/mystery books. I think experienced genre readers will think it's lame :)
#4 The Orphans Tale by Pam Jenoff . My sister-in-law recommended this book after she flew through it. It is a historical fiction novel set in World War 2 in Europe, because, hey, that sells books apparently :) The story revolves around two main female characters both running from a shady past. One is Dutch and one Jewish, both join the circus to hide from something. This book is so meaty and flows very well. I was on page 100 before I knew it. Stayed up too late (again) and I may have taken a day off work just to read. It does move very slowly, which seems intentional, as the story builds. I also felt is was on the darker side, as most World War 2 fiction novels are. So, my advice would be to pace yourself with less intense books before or after this one.
I'm pretty much in love with everything I read this month. It was just an overall good reading month. Love when those happen.
If you would like more book recommendations check out this blog and this blog and this one too! So many good books out there to choose from.