Tag: Britain

GI Brides

September 18, 2014 Biography, History, Narrative Non-Fiction, non-fiction, Review 21 ★★★★

GI BridesTitle: GI Brides
Author: Duncan Barrett, Nuala Calvi
Source: TLC Book Tours
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

Summary: I loved learning about this fascinating bit of history and the incredible journeys of the GI brides, although I found the third person narration a bit stiff.

During the “friendly invasion” of Britain by American GIs during WWII, many women were bewitched by the handsome soldiers with their foreign accents. Thousands of these liaisons ended in marriage and the US army paid to transport the newly married GI brides to the US. For many, this was an exciting, but terrifying prospect. Many of the couples were just getting to know one another and the women rarely knew what they were getting themselves into. From cultural differences to overbearing families, from drinking husbands to gambling husbands, these women faced incredible, impossible to anticipate challenges when they reached their new homes. The four women in this story didn’t all find fairy tale endings, but through sheer force of will, they each shaped lives that would make them happy. Read more »

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How To Build a Girl Read-Along – Part 4

August 4, 2014 Blogger Events, Contemporary, Fiction 8

caitlin moranWe’re up to chapter 20 and things are really picking up! Be warned, spoilers below. So far, the experience of reading this book for me has been very different from anything else I’ve ever read. I feel emotionally invested in Johanna. I care when she’s sad and get excited when she’s happy and do all the worrying she should be doing about STDs and unwanted pregnancies and pervs she might encounter going home with random guys. However, I also feel like an outside observer who’s just really, really curious where this is all going. Johanna’s life is so crazy and different from mine and I can’t wait to see what happens. Read more »

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How To Build a Girl Read-Along – Part 3

July 28, 2014 Blogger Events 6

caitlin moranWe’re up to chapter 15 in our read-along this week, so be warned – spoilers below! What surprised me most about this section was how beautifully sentimental some of the quotes were. Especially at the beginning of the section, I really enjoyed how happy Johanna was and how much fun she had traveling. I was a briefly heartbroken for her when she stopped hearing from the magazine, but finished the section feeling reasonably hopeful. I mean, I’m sure she’s going to get herself into a bad situation the way she’s going. I also think her coworkers probably think she’s completely ridiculous. But she’s having fun again and exploring who she is and I’m excited to go along for the ride. Read more »

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How To Build a Girl Read-Along – Part 2

July 21, 2014 Blogger Events 7

caitlin moran

I am now 10 chapters into How To Build a Girl and it’s time to check in again. Beware spoilers through chapter 10 below. So far, things are still going well! I definitely have a girl crush on Caitlin Moran who is both the reason I consider myself a feminist and the reason I’m happy to tell you I consider myself a feminist. In How To Be a Woman, she had me in stitches almost the whole book – an impressive feat given that she also made me think about many important issues. How To Build a Girl is living up to the hype that created for me much better than I expected. Caitlin’s same sense of humor is there, perhaps slightly less often given the need for narrative, but there are definitely parts that have me laughing out loud. Even though this is fiction, I feel like Caitlin’s character’s story has the same refreshing feel of raw honesty found in her memoir. I know it’s not real, but it’s such an intimate look at a character’s life, I still feel like she’s a real person telling me her story. Read more »

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How To Build a Girl Read-Along – Part 1

July 14, 2014 Blogger Events, Fiction 14

caitlin moranSince this is a read-along, be warned that there will be spoilers. Today we’re discussing chapters 1-4. My main observation about this part of the book is that Caitlin Moran’s hilarious, ernest, frank style in How To Be a Woman translated just fine to fiction. In fact, so far the book reads a lot like the parts of How To Be a Woman which describe Moran’s childhood. There are obvious differences – as Moran is quick to point out, she had much better parents – but there are obvious similarities too. Both Moran and her character are particularly fond of dogs, books, and wanking. Both live in houses crowded with children, have few friends, and enjoy escaping into books. Most importantly, her character in this book narrates her story in Moran’s style, which means I’m loving it. The differences are large enough that I don’t feel like I’m just reading How To Be a Woman over again. It’s more like I’m getting awesome bonus material and I can’t wait to read more!

This read-along is being hosted by Emily at As the Crow Flies (And Reads) so you can check out what the other participants are thinking so far at her link-up.

Amazon|Goodreads|Indiebound

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The King’s Speech

July 30, 2013 Biography, non-fiction 7

9755737Title: The King’s Speech
Editor: Mark Logue and Peter Conradi
Source: library
Rating: ★★★★☆
Fun Fact: Stammering was referenced three times in the book of Isaiah and the Egyptians had a hieroglyph for it.
Review Summary: The amazing use of primary sources made this a moving story and a fascinating historical account.

As the Duke of York a stammer was difficult to live with so a speech therapist was essential. However, many were consulted without results until Lionel Logue, who attributed his progress to the Duke’s hard work and the rapport they established. In fact, the two became not only patient and therapist, but friends. This friendship lasted when the Duke’s older brother unexpectedly abdicated and he became King George VI. Logue’s help was invaluable in allowing the King to perform his duties and both men treasured their friendship throughout their lives. Read more »

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Bookends About Pardonable Lies

July 29, 2012 Uncategorized 2

Title: Pardonable Lies
Author: Jacqueline Winspear
Source: library
Rating: ★★☆☆☆
Review Summary: A little more paranormal than I expected this series to get, which threw me, but also much more exciting and action-packed than previous books in the series.

Hello all! I’m currently recovering at my parents’ house in Ohio after the first leg of my move, before heading on to Ithaca on Tuesday, so it’s a great time to get this post up for the summer book club being hosted by Jessica of Quirky Bookworm. This is actually the third book in the Maisie Dobbs series (my review of the first is here) and like all of the books I’ve read so far (through the fourth in the series) it includes a case related to the aftermath of WWI as well as a case that makes Maisie think about her personal experiences in the war. Her first case is an odd one, as she is asked to prove that a man’s son did not survive the war. This leads to a more personal investigation, helping a friend learn about a brother lost in the war under mysterious circumstances. Read more »

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