Below, you’ll find full reviews of the books I’ve included in past Jennifer Reads posts.
If there’s a book you’d like to see reviewed here, leave a comment down below or send a message via my Contact Me page.
18 June 2022
Elsa Sosa explains what she knows of her father’s life and legacy, pulling together tales of family and childhood in the Dominican Republic.
If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery
7 June 2022
It’s hard to avoid phrases like, “powerhouse short stories,” and “dazzling debut.” Each story enlightens the rest, making the collection a perfect balance of tenderness and grit, hope, and despair.
Untamed Passions of an Enigmatic Jamaican Man by Donovan Moore
Reviewed, 20 May 2022
Moore isn’t shy with the juicy details. Not so with matters of the heart. He withholds recollections of childhood and close friendships. On an endless quest for a love that satisfies the soul, he admits himself a philandering husband doomed to the sadness of repeated losses.
Send Her Back and Other Stories by Munashe Kaseke
Reviewed, 13 May 2022
New immigrants and first-generation Americans bring life into focus. Through their eyes, we see ourselves again for the first time.
In the Marble Maze by Olafur Gudnason
Reviewed, 7 May 2022
In the Marble Maze is one of many memorials Gudnason creates for Engilbjort. As he sorts through relics, photos, and clothing, he takes time to remember.
Figurines by Jamie Boud
Reviewed 29 April 2022
Figurines is the tumultuous story of a mother and daughter lost in a cycle of abuse, neglect, and mental illness.
Vigil Harbor by Julia Glass
Reviewed 22 April 2022
On a Massachusetts peninsula, the town of Vigil Harbor is steeped in history while besieged by a tumultuous world.
By the Iowa Sea by Joe Blair
7 April 2022
Joe Blair’s excellent memoir roils and surges like the flooded Iowa rivers which were his inspiration.
Fred: And Unbecoming Woman by Annie Krabbenschmidt
Reviewed, 24 March 2022
Part memoir, part treatise, part confessional, Krabbenschmidt’s book opens its heart to embrace the world as a fully human being.
Remembrances of Things to Come: Daily Life in France from 1003 to 1975 by Douglas Bullis
Reviewed, 17 March 2022
A history book with a difference, Remembrances of Things to Come, takes readers on a tour of times past.
A More Perfect Union by Alexander Moss
Reviewed, 24 February 2022
Ever get chills reading the morning headlines? Ever worry about how bad it could get? A More Perfect Union has an unexpected solution.
Stories for the Apocalypse #1: Notes on the New Normal by Ben Tallon
Reviewed, 10 February 2022
Grab a beverage. Forget what they’re saying about you on social media. Stories for the Apocalypse #1 is altered reality with a vicious grin.
Milkman by Anna Burns
Reviewed, 28 January 2022
Winner of the Man Booker Prize 2018, Milkman is a novel of importance not for the history it records but for the human story folded in its pages.
My Secret Radio by Michael Hallock
Reviewed, 12 January 2022
The story of a Southern Gothic everyman drawn by Fate through a late-20th century coming-of-age, My Secret Radio reflects on humanity and the cycles of history.
DeadStar: Who the Hell Was Garth Tyson
Reviewed, 29 December 2021
by Nick Griffiths
A cast of outspoken characters framed by a compelling mystery, DeadStar offers obscure rock history with the requisite effing and blinding.
The Last Days of Dogtown by Anita Diamant
Reviewed, 13 December 2021
I first reviewed this novel on Good Reads in June 2011. Ten years later, I still receive regular comments from fellow readers about this haunting gem.
The Mighty Franks by Michael Frank
Reviewed, 27 November 2021
Michael Frank gives us his coming of age story in the form of this emotional memoir of a remarkable family.
Giving Up the Ghost by Hilary Mantel
Reviewed, 8 November 2021
Written before her highly acclaimed Booker Prize-winning novels Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, Mantel comes to terms with a childhood of illness and poverty, nosey neighbors and social sleights. The keen girl who observes it all is a born writer.
The 38 Most Common Fiction Writing Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them) by Jack M. Bickham
Reviewed, 29 October 2021
This comprehensive style guide leads the way through a minefield of writing pitfalls. With chapter titles like, Don’t Make Excuses and Don’t Worry What Mother Will Think, Bickham leads aspiring writers over the narrow path to great stories.
Writing In General and the Short Story In Particular by Rust Hill
Reviewed, 16 October 2021
Rust Hill breaks down modern fiction with the insights of a veteran reader, editor and lecturer, assuring us in his introduction that originality makes the difference between “slick fiction” and a fine story. “If you’ve actually got that, you’re the kind of person who could possibly really use this book, without probably really needing it….”