A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse

April: Book Case Browse

A random pick from my book case is showcased here every month, with as much information as possible given to you minus any spoilers. By the end, hopefully I will have given you a book that will be your new favorite, or one you know you will steer clear of.

 

Feature of the month: Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

“You know what that reflects? Unsatisfied lives. Unfulfilled lives. Lives that haven’t found meaning. Because if you have found your meaning in your life, you don’t want to go back. You want to go forward. You want to see more, do more […].”

 

If I remember correctly, this might have been my very first non-fiction book. To say that this book moved me would be an understatement. It had me almost in tears and smiling like crazy as I read it on a train. This book is real. And by real I mean that Morrie hasn’t sugarcoated life, he talks about all the crap that life is going to throw at you in terms of relationships, regrets, losses, love, marriage, parenthood, trauma and more. He knows its ugly and he tells that to you plain, and straight. But, when he says it, it is delivered as a very gentle reminder. And with several ways you can live a life that is satisfies and fulfills you. He tells you how your life can have more meaning.

And if it so happens, that after reading the life lessons, you feel that you have not gained much in terms of bringing a change in your life — the least you will have read is a really good story of a man who enjoyed his life to the fullest and did not let his past cloud or taint his present and future.

At 192 pages, this book is a short read and also very light as far as the language it concerned. But it is powerful and moving, and will brighten up your day a little despite its inevitable ending.

 

Even though I loved this book, I still remain a little bit wary of non-fiction and thus I am unable to rate this book higher.

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍🍍 / 5

love,

m.v

 

[ Find the Book Case Browse from March here ]

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse, Series

March: Book Case Browse

Here I’ll be recommending a book that I stumbled upon. This book could be a red capret VIP or a very grudging member of my Book Case. The honest review I give out and the latest ‘pineapple’ rating addition give you your space to make the decision of the big question: To Read or Not To Read.

Don’t worry, I will never be giving out the plot line so the former option will always be open.

Feature of the month: Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

“You know, people come to Italy for all sorts of reasons, but when they stay, it’s for the same two things.”
“What?”
“Love and gelato.”

Love and Gelato. Doesn’t the title already scream Italy? Lina’s life is turned upside down when her mother sends her to live in a cemetery (yes, you did read that right. in a cemetery) with Howard in Italy. While there, Lina stumbles on piece after piece of her mother’s past that turns her life even more upside down (yes, you will be surprised to realize as you read the book that it was still possible!). She has a special certain someone (who is already taken by basically a model) by her side as she unravels hushed up secrets. On this whirlwind of a trip, Lina discovers Florence, her mother’s past and herself side by side. Not to mention, a new family member is discovered as well.

Exceptionally written, this young-adult fiction strums every chord of your heart. You will be left in awe not only by the scenes of Italy and its bursting flavors that are so vividly painted, but also with the resilience that a teenage Lina shows in a very tumultuous phase of her life. Of course, this book also gives you its share of young adult drama, but Welch delivers it as smoothly as a scoop of straciatella gelato.

I would really recommend this beautiful piece of work as your next read.

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍🍍.5 / 5

love,

m.v

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse

February: Book Case Browse

Here I’ll be recommending a book that I stumbled upon. This book could be a grudging member of my Book Case, or a red carpet VIP. The honest review I give out and the latest ‘pineapple’ rating addition give you your space to make the decision of the big question: To Read or Not To Read. Don’t worry, I will never be giving out the plot line so the former option will always be open.

Feature of the month: Always and Forever Lara Jean by Jenny Han

I’ve read the whole series and maybe I’ll review the others too one day. But this is the one I have read recently.

This book is just as YA as its prequels, and I love it for that. To portray the though and decision processes of a teenager is pretty hard, but Han does it wonderfully. She really takes us on the highs and lows of Lara Jean’s life and her character is also very real and very relatable. The book is full of quirks, oddities, irrational decisions, love, making memories, loss, college applications and all the cocktail parts that make up a teenager’s life. I hate to admit this, but I promised myself that whatever I write on this blog will be honest so I must say this – I actually cried (in my defence though, it was just a little) when I finished the book because it brought back memories of my high school and I really replayed all the highlights and the not so great moments. Though I never appreciated it while I was in high school, looking back at it, I do really miss it a lot and would trade it in a heartbeat for the mess that university is right now.

It’s a light read which is heavily based on the previous books, so its pretty important for you to read them and know the context before you try and understand this. Youll lose a lot of information if you don’t know the kind of background that Lara Jean and the other characters come from. But if you’ve read the previous books, this is such a nice, rounded and actually finished ending to the series. Of course if Han wanted she could pick up the ending threads this minute and weave another one of these stories on Lara Jean’s college life, but for now it seems that this is where she is taking her break.

Anyhow, the story is a light read, and will 10/10 remind you of the time you were in high school. Its nostalgic and heart warming and completely lovable for suckers for romance like me!

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍.5 / 5

love,

m.v.

 

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse

August: Book Case Browse

Here I’ll be recommending a book that I stumbled upon. This book could be a grudging member of my Book Case, or a red carpet VIP. The honest review I give out and the latest ‘pineapple’ rating addition give you your space to make the decision of the big question: To Read or Not To Read. Don’t worry, I will never be giving out the plot line so the former option will always be open.

Feature of the month: Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

Let me get this out: Darcy was a completely selfish bitch. I’m positive that there won’t be too many disagreements on that one. As far as the story goes, it is once again about lost loves and consequential events and stories. This one is a light read for about 7/8ths of the book and then you’re hit with a twist that you can totally buy but probably didn’t expect.

I have always felt that the need to cheat in marriages is never there unless it really is a very unhappy bond or if there was a compromise from the start.

This book deals with most things practically, except a couple, but hey, creative freedom right? As I already said before, it is a nice, light read for an afternoon where you don’t have a lot on your hands and want to dive into a book that doesn’t require a lot of effort from your side.

P.S: I think you probably already know what the ‘something borrowed’ is.

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍.5 / 5

love,

m.v

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse

July: Book Case Browse

Here I’ll be recommending a book that I stumbled upon. This book could be a grudging member of my Book Case, or a red carpet VIP. The honest review I give out and the latest ‘pineapple’ rating addition give you your space to make the decision of the big question: To Read or Not To Read. Don’t worry, I will never be giving out the plot line so the former option will always be open.

Feature of the month: When Dimple met Rishi by Sandhya Menon.

This YA book captured my heart in so many ways. Except one: the premise it was constructed upon. I am familiar with Indian customs, but families living in the USA aren’t all that backward that they will arrange marriages for their children at the young age of 18 years. And the children will even be open to this idea. I certainly wasn’t and supported Dimple completely for focusing on her career and getting that sort of fulfillment from life rather than hunting for the I.I.H (you gotta read the book to get this) at that age.

However, overlooking that concept (it was hard, but not impossible), the book is actually quite fantastic. And very well structured and organized. It focuses on a lot of issues that YAs deal with, without being pushy and over the top. There is absolutely nothing in this book that feels unreal or fake. Sandhya Menon has done a great job of capturing what it’s like to be in that situation and dealing with the drama that is part of the package. All characters that should be developed are very well developed and you really feel like you know their dispositions by the end of the book. And sometimes there’s nothing better than that feeling of closure.

I’ve been in a dilemma of whether to say this or not. After a lot of debating I’ll give out just one “spoiler”, only because I think I would’ve wanted to know this before I started reading the book. The book has a happy ending! There, I said it.

I haven’t watched the movie When Harry met Sally, so I can’t confirm if this plot line is similar to the movie’s (even though the title is). But it is a really great, heart-warming and mood-lifting read for all YAs and even As that have mushy hearts which reach out to absolutely lovable romances. As one critic explained it by saying that this is a book you didn’t know you needed in your life.

 

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍🍍 ( / 5)

 

love,

m.v

 

 

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse

May: Book Case Browse

If you’re new here, or still unfamiliar with the series then: This is a series in which I recommend and/or review a book that has impacted me without giving away the actual story (so you can still go and read it!).

Feature of the month: Everything, Everything 

The movie is coming out on May 28th in the US so I figured now would be a good time to review the book. Firstly, just from the trailer I can tell you that the casting is not true to the book. I’ll probably still end up watching the movie because that’s who I am, but I’m not holding my breath because I know that once again the book hasn’t been done justice to.

Back to the story, it is kinda…cute, but I have read cuter books. I feel that the mother’s anguish could have been shown differently so that the readers could sympathize with her more. Maddy’s character could’ve been developed a bit more than it was. I mean, she was always at home but she had access to the internet, she wasn’t exactly limited as far as resources are concerned. The book made it sound like Maddy was living in the stone age or something. The concept itself is not to my personal taste, but I feel that nonetheless a much better book could’ve been written with the chosen story line. Yoon could have spent more time on certain topics to make the reader actually feel involved in the story as compared to a by-stander watching a movie on fast forward at times.

The characters weren’t as rounded as they should’ve been and there was very little focus on certain aspects that could’ve been brought to light much earlier. Overall, its a read for when you’ve run out of options and don’t want to use much brain.

love,

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse, Musings, Series

April: Book Case Browse

If you’re new here, or still unfamiliar with the series then: This is a series in which I recommend and/or review a book that has impacted me without giving away the actual story (so you can still go and read it!).

Feature of the month: The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper

I read this one a little while ago and while the cover of the book made me fall in love with it, the book wasn’t exactly as promising. Arthur Pepper while cleaning out some sentimental items, stumbles upon a mysterious object that takes him on these crazy adventures. While the majority of the book was entertaining, there were certain parts that were too far fetched to be part of the adventure of a 70-something man. Patrick did a great job of building up to the climax of the book, but then it was a bit of an anti-climax for me. Okay, it was a sensible ending, but personally I would’ve preferred a bit more of an enlightenment, or a bit more of closure than what Patrick gave the readers.

To sum the book up in one sentence: It was a great read, but the ending was a bit of a bummer.

love,

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse

March: Book Case Browse

If you’re new here, or still unfamiliar with the series then: This is a series in which I recommend and/or review a book that has impacted me.

Feature of the month: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

I am probably one of the few that have just gotten their hands on Flynn’s 2012 thriller: Gone Girl. This book of approx. 580 pages is true to its genre and thus very much a thriller. I know it has been said before but this one really has you hooked from the start. Flynn, drops twists after twists in this tale of an offtrack romance. And by offtrack, I do actually, really and wholeheartedly mean offtrack. To be able to imagine, conceive and bring to life a character like Amy Elliott Dunne is a job that only select can execute, and Flynn has done this exceptionally well.

Personally, the ending was a bit of a bummer, and after the roller-coaster ride that Flynn took me through, I was hoping for yet another plot twist at the end. Although in some respects, she did give that, I was however left slightly unsatisfied and hanging.

Unfortunately, revealing anything more about the story line will ruin, if not dampen the suspense and nail-biting excitement that Gone Girl gives the reader. If you’re a lover of crime and psychological thrillers, why haven’t you read this already?

love,

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse, Lifestyle, Series

February: Book Case Browse

If you’re new here, or still unfamiliar with the series then: This is a series in which I recommend and/or review a book that has impacted me.

Feature of the month: Ordeal by Innocence by Agatha Christie

Ever since I have started reading, I have been fed with mystery/murder books. It started with A-Z Mysteries, followed by Nancy Drew, The Three Investigators and what not and then Agatha Christie, and other novelists. Somehow though, I have always been addicted to Christie novels and nothing else has mattered more. So here, in the third edition of Book Case Browse I will talk about one of the recent ones I’ve read.

Ordeal by Innocence is all about how a man is convicted of a crime, dies in prison and two years later gains a “free pardon” thanks to a Dr. Arthur Calgary. It is a cleverly crafted book and though I personally guessed the killer, I am not sure I would’ve been able to if I hadn’t been reading her books for the longest of time. The way the book is structured is absolutely marvelous and I thoroughly enjoyed this read.

If you have the chance to pick up this, or for that matter any Agatha Christie book (in case you don’t really know her work), then I urge you to do it. 

love,

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse, Lifestyle, Series

January: Book Case Browse

If you’re new here, or still unfamiliar with the series then: This is a series in which I recommend and/or review a book that has impacted me.

Feature of the month: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

This well known book has already been read by many, and if you are one of those, then high-five! But if you haven’t read it yet, then you seriously need to leave right now and go get yourself a copy. This timeless classic probes into a lot of what our society still looks like today and, of course, creates a love where there was no hope in the beginning. Elizabeth Bennet, a lady way ahead of her time, finds true love in the “last person” she could think of marrying and the undying love of Mr. Darcy makes most girls swoon and wish for their own. Though written in old English, the sentiments delivered are so beautiful that it is unbelievable. I have read it more than 4 times and still can’t get enough. 😛

love,

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A Bright Canvas, Book Case Browse, Lifestyle, Series

Monthly: Book Case Browse

First post of a series in which I will review/recommend book(s) that have piqued my interest and that I loved reading/look forward to read. If you have any suggestions for this series, your input is more than welcome!

Feature of the month: The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul by Deborah Rodriguez

I just borrowed this book from the local library and I literally picked it up within 5-ish minutes. I had a bus to catch and missing it would mean a solid 30 minutes of wait, so no thank you. What attracted me to this book was the interwoven tale of 5 women who come together “in one of the most dangerous places on earth”. I thoroughly (and I can’t emphasize that enough) enjoyed this book. I don’t know how I can write a lot without giving away a lot of the plot and story, but I can say this much: people change and those changes are beautiful. Rodriguez makes you fall in love with the characters and sometimes the hopelessness of the situation. Although there are bombs going off just two blocks away from this Coffee Shop, so much of importance happens here that it is unbelievable. This book is a tale of sisterhood and love that finds a way and passion and hearts that melt and change. “Five extraordinary women” come together to create this beautiful novel where (almost) everything thrives in the midst of terrorism.

If you can get your hands on this one, please grab it and give it a read.

love,

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