Wow! Certainly an interesting stack of books. A quick review starting from top to bottom.
Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman
Catherine Steadman is a British actress and may be best known in the U.S. for her role in Downton Abbey. Something in the Water is a thriller from the first page with a woman digging a grave for her husband of one year and ends the first chapter with, "I'm not a bad person. Or maybe I am. Maybe you should decide?" Well, I am still undecided, she is definitely a woman with a mind of her own and made a lot of bad decisions. It's a fast-paced beach book.
Yes, Chef: A Memoir by Marcus Samuelsson with Veronica Chambers
This book is for all you aspiring chefs and anyone who like to read about food. Most have heard of Marcus Samuelsson, he won Top Chef Masters and can be seen on the food networks. His story is about hard work, desire and dedication to being the best chef. He was born in Ethiopia, adopted by Swedish parents and moves to New York City to fulfill his destiny. I loved this book.
The Book of Lost Saints by Daniel Jose Older
The story is about Marisol, a young woman who vanished during the Cuban Revolution. She is a supernatural spirit who wants to remember her life story. She wants her story known to her family. Her spirit visits and inhabits her nephew Ramon, who is currently living in New Jersey.. She disrupts his dreams and pushes him to travel back to Cuban to discover her story. This novel was really interesting. It is told in English and Spanish. It took me some time to understand what was happening and that maybe spirits do come back to visit us humans.
Swamplandia! by Karen Russell
Old Florida is glorified in this novel. I was all in from the start of this book up to my knees in the alligator pit. Thirteen year old Ava is part of the Bigtree alligator-wrestling dynasty who own Swamplandia!, an alligator - wrestling theme park. The star of the show is Ava's mother who swims with the alligators. She dies of cancer and the family falls apart. Ava is determined to put things back together. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend.
Bowlaway by Elizabeth McCracken
Another quirky book, Bowlaway begins with a woman who seems to fall from the sky and lands in a cemetery with a small suitcase filled with bowling ball, a candlepin, and fifteen pounds of gold. Her goal is to open a candlepin bowling alley. Needless to say, the story's absurdities continue throughout the book. It is funny! A breath of fresh air.
The Age of Light by Whitney Scharer
A story about Vogue model, photographer Lee Miller and her relationship with artist Man Ray. We read this novel for March book club. Excellent book, I'd highly recommend. You can read more here.
I'm an expert amateur or maybe an amateur expert.