Thursday, January 19, 2012

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What an inspiring story! Like other accounts of the horror of the Holocaust, Dina Frydman Balbien shares her life while showing strength and courage that not many possess. Her story is told by her daughter, lending a closeness that would have been lost if Dina had recounted her story to a different writer. Although there are grammatical mistakes throughout the book, it is easy to pass over them because of the sheer readability of the text. The details in the story are incredibly vivid, allowing the reader to feel as though they are there with her as she survives tragedy after tragedy. The spirit of the book would evoke hope in even the hardest of souls. Dina has certainly lived up to the expectations of a survivor--someone who is brave enough to share the past but smart enough to know it is the terrifying details that make it the most real.

Monday, January 9, 2012

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was lovely and touching. I can always tell I'm reading a good book written by a talented author when I'm sad I've reached the last page--I could have read more and more pages about these characters. Umrigar writes about a friendship between 4 Indian women that has evolved over several decades. Each character was original and fully-fleshed so that it was easy for the reader to feel like they knew each woman (and their spouses.) The setting of India is another strength of the novel--it adds an additional character to the feel of the story. The dialogue was realistic and the usage of Indian words added to the authenticity. Can't wait to read more of this woman's work!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I usually don't read books in the fantasy/romance genre, but this story was interesting and it kept my attention (even if it felt a little long.) I probably won't continue to read the series, but I can see why people are drawn to this style of writing. The text is mostly dialogue, so it reads quickly, and there isn't so much digging into the characters that the story gets lost. Overall, it was a nice surprise to find it written so well.