Book Snap #32:

Title: Tradition

Author: Brendan Kiely

Date read: November 5, 2018.

Two Snaps.

Finished late at night in the dark with a flashlight. Used to do that to read past curfew. Did it last night because I had no power. Another powerful YA novel tackling important issues. The traditions of this prep school allow a toxic masculinity that ask both main characters to push up against what’s expected of them at school that demands that they conform.


“…Even in a room full of girls it was all about the guys.”
― Brendan Kiely, Tradition

Read Kiely’ article in The Atlantic: “The Girls Who Live in an All-Boys World.”

Book Snap #31:

Title: Women Talking

Author: Miriam Toews

Date read: October 14, 2018.

Two Snaps.

Only the intro to this book can explain it and my engagement with it:

“Between 2005 and 2009 in a remote Mennonite colony in Bolivia named the Manitoba colony, after the province in Canada, many girls and women would wake in the morning feeling drowsy and in pain, their bodies bruised and bleeding, having been attacked in the night. The attacks were attributed to ghosts and demons. Some members of the community felt the women er being made to suffer by God or Satan as punishment of their sins; many accused the women of lying for attention or to cover up adultery; still other believed everything was the result of wild female imagination.

Eventually, it was revealed that eight men from the colony had been using an anaesthetic to knock their victims unconscious and rape them. In 2011, these men were convicted in a Bolivian court and received lengthy prison sentences. In 2013, while the convicted men were still in jail, it was reported that similar assaults and other sexual abuses were still taking place in the colony. Read about the true story and aftermath here.

Women Talking is both a reaction through fiction to these true-life events, and an act of female imagination.”

Yes, yes, yes. Well done, Miriam Toews!

Book Snap #28:

Title: The Italian Teacher

Author: Tom Rachman

Date read: October 6, 2018.

One Snap.

I liked it. I felt sorry for Pinch, one of the main characters, throughout. There are lively and well drawn characters, but I wasn’t always connected to them or rooting for them or caring about them, I mostly felt indifferent.

Book Snap #30:

Title: The Power Author: Naomi Alderman

Date Read: January 29, 2018.
One Snap.
I think I may have liked it. New genre for me. Tried sorting out how I felt but I was still confused and couldn’t decide.

Book Snap #29:

Title: Vox

Author: Christina Dalcher

Date read: October 9, 2018.

Two Snaps.

Loved it. Was riled by it. My haunches were rankled, my dendrites were alight.

If 1984 and The Handmaid’s Tale got together and made a baby… the result would be Vox, the most riveting, frightening and compelling book. Told now, in Trump’s America, makes it horrifyingly realistic. Could not put it down. Two thumbs way up!

Book Snap #27:

Title: The 57 Bus

Author: Dashka Slater

Date read: September 21, 2018.

Two Snaps.

Wow! What a book. Such an amazing true story, thoughtfully and insightfully told.

This riveting nonfiction book for teens about race, class, gender, crime, and punishment tells the true story of an agender teen who was set on fire by another teen while riding a bus in Oakland, California.

Book Snap #26:

Title: Before I Let you Go

Author: Kelly Rimmer

Date read: September 11, 2018.

One Snap.

The love of two sisters is stretched to its ultimate breaking point. I have a brother, perhaps I didn’t connect, or the author didn’t quite take me there. I liked, but didn’t love.

Book Snap #25:

Title: This Is Not A Love Letter

Author: Kim Purcell

Date read: September 5, 2018.

Two Snaps.

A long, beautiful, heart-breaking love letter… an amazing YA novel. One I book-talked with my young readers.

Book Snap #24:

Title: The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly

Author: Stephanie Oakes

Date read: August 29, 2018.

Two Snaps.

Amazing YA novel! Two very loud snaps! I was riveted to this story. My students also loved it. A painful and harrowing story about the dangers of blind faith—and the power of having faith in yourself.

Book Snap #23:

Title: Bloodletting and Miraculous Cures

Author: Vincent Lam

Date read: August 19, 2018.

Two Snaps.

Another compelling story. Written by a physician– an interesting slant on the medical profession.