Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
Into the Water is a psychological suspense. It was a decent novel but with as much hype as it got I thought it would be a little better. I give it 2/5.
American Assassin by Vince Flynn
I saw the trailer for American Assassin with Michael Keaton and Dylan O’Brien (the guy from The Maze Runner) earlier this summer and as soon as I saw it I knew I wanted to read the book beforehand which was a little surprising even to myself since manly action thriller novels aren’t usually my thing, but I’m glad I read it. It was an enjoyable read and like most books, it was better than the movie. I give it 3/5.
White Fur by Jardine Libaire
I really enjoyed White Fur which is a “gritty reinterpretation of Romeo and Juliet.” Some of the scenes made me feel uncomfortable but I liked how raw and uncensored it felt, just like the main character Elise. I would recommend this novel to others; I give it a 4/5.
One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of this Will Matter by Scaachi Koul
One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter is a collection of essays based on the thoughts and experiences of Scaachi Koul, who is also a writer for Buzzfeed. She touched on a lot of different topics from being Indian, racism, family, dating, alcoholism, growing up. It was a good collection of essays to read on my Kindle during my commute. Some parts were funny and/or interesting but there were definitely some points when I felt she was preaching a bit yet she is still ignorant about some things as well.
Overall, it was entertaining enough so I give it 3/5.
The Idiot by Elif Batuman
This book is pretty slow going throughout the duration of the novel and I kept waiting for something big to happen which never did, but for whatever reason I still enjoyed it. True story–I literally read reviews afterward to see if I am in fact the idiot which is why I missed the point but then I read this article from NPR which confirmed that there really is no point because that’s Batuman’s style of fiction. I like how they described it as “a long wander, a vague rummage.” This is definitely not a novel for everyone, so I would only recommend it to my fellow book nerds. In my opinion it is a 3.5/5.
Final Girls by Riley Sager
This is another novel I read pretty quickly on my Kindle to and from work. I liked Final Girls better than Into the Water which were both compared to Gone Girl although I don’t think the guy who turned out to be the killer makes much sense. I give it a 2.5/5.
The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
I picked up The Sympathizer at The Strand bookstore in Union Square when I was in the spirit after having recently seen Miss Saigon on Broadway. I liked it for the most part. Some chapters I got really into but then it would be brought to a low, slow simmer. It was hard to get a sense of time too; one chapter the main character is going about his day-to-day life and the next he mentions in passing that X amount of months/years had passed.
The author was also very descriptive at some parts. For example, he described a vivid scene from his youth involving sexual things he performed with a squid which was very disturbing but imaginative nonetheless. Unfortunately it’s the perverted scenes like that that I’ll probably remember the longest. Overall I give it a 3/5.