I kicked off April with a bang when I read The Housemaid for my book club – it sucked me in from the very beginning and made me want to read every single book I could get my hands on! Last April I didn’t read a single book, so this year was a fun switch, and I’m happy to say that the momentum has continued into May! I have read so many wonderful books lately, so I hope you find a few new titles to add to your TBR from what I read in April.
The Housemaid by Freida McFadden – 5 Stars
This is one of the best thrillers I’ve read in a long time! We picked it for our April book club choice, and I’m so glad we did, because it got me back into reading on my Kindle! I grabbed this one on Kindle Unlimited and tore through it in a day. It’s about Millie, a woman with a secret who gets a job as a live-in maid for a wealthy family. I don’t want to give anything away, but I loved this book!
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig – 5 Stars
I knew nothing about this book when I picked it up, and at first, I wondered if I’d made a mistake. It felt like it was going to be pretty depressing, but I pushed on, and I’m so glad I did! It was such a wonderful story about what it would be like to be able to check out alternate lives for ourselves like you’re perusing a library, and about how the choices you make today can change everything. It was delightful and thought-provoking.
The Housemaid’s Secret by Freida McFadden – 5 Stars
This is one of the only instances where I will say that book two was just as good as book one! The Housemaid’s Secret is the sequel to The Housemaid and picks up a few years after the first book ends, though you don’t really have to have that back story to read this one. It was another twisty thriller following Millie on her journey as a maid in the city. I loved it!
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath – 3 Stars
I’ve had this copy of The Bell Jar for quite a while, but I ended up listening to this one on audio – voiced by Maggie Gyllenhal! I read The Dollhouse by Fiona Davis last year – a fictional book about the Barbizon Hotel for women where Sylvia Plath lived in college. I’m really glad that I had finished that book first or I don’t know that I would’ve understood as well what was going on while she was in New York City at the hotel. I thought it was an interesting read, and loved the voice on audio!
Beyond the Wand by Tom Felton – 5 Stars
Another magical and delightful read – Beyond the Wand is Tom Felton’s new memoir about his coming-of-age in movies, particularly the Harry Potter films. I loved the behind the scenes look at the making of the movies and how he got involved. I loved his little stories about different castmates – imagine seeing Harry Potter, Draco Malfoy, and Professor Dumbledore outside taking a smoke break! It was a fun read that made me realize it was time to have an HP reread!
Burnout by Emily Nagoski – 2 Stars
This was a reread for me – I read Burnout for the first time a couple of years ago and remember loving it and thinking I needed to read it again to absorb everything I’d learned. I don’t know if I’m crazy or if I’m just in a different phase of life, but this time around, I really did not like this book. It felt like the author was trying to claim that women are stressed and burned out because of the patriarchy exclusively, and it felt more like a manifesto of sorts than a practical look at how to deal with burnout.
Paris: The Memoir by Paris Hilton – 5 Stars
EVERYONE NEEDS TO READ THIS MEMOIR. It is so heartbreaking but so important – possibly one of the best memoirs I’ve ever read. I was so shocked to read about Paris Hilton’s story because while I was never a huge fan of hers, I thought I knew relatively what her story was, but I was so wrong. This book was so impactful, and I will keep recommending it to everyone!
Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid – 5 Stars
Another reread for me, but this one I loved just as much the second time around! I wanted to reread the book before I watched the show as a refresher, so I’m excited to jump in and start watching now! This was one of the first books I read in my first ever book club after college, and it has a special place in my heart.
A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult – 2 Stars
I went into this book completely blind, and I probably should’ve put it down once I realized what it was about, but I didn’t. With everything going on in the world, it was honestly just too much. It’s the story of a shooting in an abortion clinic in Mississippi, and while it had the makings of a good book, I really did not enjoy it. The content was so heavy, and the timeline was written completely out of order, starting at the end and then jumping back and forth the entire time so that I could never figure out where we were in the story. I just didn’t enjoy it.
The Perfect Marriage by Jeneva Rose – 4 Stars
Another Kindle Unlimited thriller to keep me awake at night! I love reading my Kindle before bed, so I was excited to pick this one up. It’s yet another domestic thriller with lots of twists and turns. A woman is faced with the choice of having to defend her husband in a murder trial after his mistress is found dead in their lakehouse. I didn’t totally love the ending, but the rest had me hooked.
Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt – 5 Stars
This book was delightful in every way, and I think everyone needs to read it. I haven’t heard nearly enough hype about it! It’s the story of an elderly woman who works as a night janitor in an aquarium, a younger man looking to find the answers to the long-asked questions of his past, and an octopus living out his final days. It was just so wonderful.
The Maid by Nita Prose – 3 Stars
This gave major Eleanor Oliphant vibes! It’s the story of a maid in a fancy hotel that finds a dead body in one of her suites and all that comes after. It was sweet and funny but it took me forever to get interested in the story.
Harry Potter & The Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling – 5 Stars
I will never not give these books 5 stars!!! It’s time for the reread – let’s go!
The Summer Place by Jennifer Weiner – 2 Stars
I debated on whether to give this book 2 or 3 stars and for now I’ve landed on 2. I could justify giving it three because I did read it quickly to know how it ended, but I was thoroughly unimpressed with the entire book. It’s about a dysfunctional family during COVID, and the marriage of their daughter to her pandemic boyfriend at the family’s summer house. Every single character was completely unlikeable and lacking a moral compass, and I just couldn’t get past it. The timeline is interesting, as well, as it’s told almost exclusively in flashbacks rather than real-time action. It’s also not about summer at all, and there’s the strange part where the house is personified and talks for a minute, too? Just bad.