I don’t use a star rating system. For a long time, I was reluctant to use any rating system. But I’ve come to think it’s helpful to readers, so I’ve decided to copy the system used on Edelweiss (an interactive publisher catalog system used in the book industry). Edelweiss reviewers are asked,   “Would you recommend this title?” and are given four choices:

♥  Yes – Much Love!
√  Yes
–   Maybe
X   No

Of course, the question really should be, “To whom would you recommend this title?” There are a few very special books I’d recommend to almost anyone (All the Light We Cannot See, The Boys in the Boat  . . .) but those are few and far between.

You’ll see very few reviews of books I wouldn’t recommend to anyone, because I’m choosy about what I read, and I usually don’t finish books I’m not enjoying.

Some of the reviews are full-length posts, and some are mini-reviews embedded in other posts. I don’t review every book I read, but I do try to mention them all in posts and include them in my yearly lists.

Click on the title to read the review!

All the Light You Cannot See (Anthony Doerr) ♥

And So We Read On: How The Great Gatsby Came to Be and Why It Endures (Maureen Corrigan) √

And the Dark Sacred Night (Julia Glass) ♥

Astonish Me (Maggie Shipstead) √

Books for Living (Will Schwalbe) ♥

The Cherry Harvest (Lucy Sanna) –

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena (Anthony Marra) ♥

A Deadly Wandering (Matt Richtel) ♥

The Death of Santini (Pat Conroy) √

The Dismantling (Brian Leeuw) √

Dollface (Renee Rosen) √ (review/author interview)

The Dream Lover (Elizabeth Berg) √ (review/author interview)

Early Decision (Lacy Crawford) √

The Enchanted (Rene Denfeld) ♥

Endangered (Jean Cush) –

Essentialism (Greg McKeown) ♥

Fallout (Sadie Jones) X

Frances and Bernard (Carlene Bauer) 

Further Out Than You Thought  (Michaela Carter) 

Girl Runner (Carrie Snyder) ♥

The Golden Son (Shilpi Somaya Gowda)

The Grown Ups (Robin Antalek) –

Gutenberg’s Apprentice (Alix Christie) –

The Half Brother (Holly LeCraw) ♥

The Headmaster’s Wife (Thomas Christopher Greene) ♥

The Hummingbird (Stephen P. Kiernan) ♥

I Shall Be Near to You (Erin Lindsay McCabe) ♥

The Indifferent Stars Above (Daniel James Brown) √

Island Fog (John Vanderslice) √ (review/author interview)

The Last Good Paradise (Tatjana Soli) –

Liar Temptress Soldier Spy (Karen Abbott) ♥

Life from Scratch: A Memoir of Food, Family, and Forgiveness (Sasha Martin) √

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing  (Marie Kondo) –

The Listener (Rachel Basch) ♥

Lydia’s Party (Margaret Hawkins) √ (review/author interview)

Marrow: A Love Story (Elizabeth Lesser) √

Mendocino Fire (Elizabeth Tallent) ♥

The New Men (Jon Enfield) X

News of the World (Paulette Jiles) ♥

No Longer and Not Yet (Joanna Clapps Herman) √

Orphan #8 (Kim Van Alkemade) √ (review/author interview)

Perfect (Rachel Joyce) ♥

The Qualities of Wood (Mary Vessel White) –

A Replacement Life (Boris Fishman) ♥

Secrets From the Eating Lab (Traci Mann, Ph.D.) √

The Sense of Touch (Ron Parsons) √

Sister Mother Husband Dog (Delia Ephron) ♥

The Story Hour (Thrity Umrigar) ♥

A Sudden Light (Garth Stein) –

The Sun and Other Stars (Brigid Pasulka) √

The Supreme Macaroni Company (Adriana Trigiani) √

Terrible Virtue (Ellen Feldman)

The Tilted World  (Tom Franklin and Beth Ann Fennelly) √

The Tusk That Did the Damage (Tania James) √

An Uncomplicated Life (Paul Daugherty) √

Village of Secrets (Caroline Moorehead) √

We Were Liars (E. Lockhart) ♥

West of Sunset (Stewart O’Nan) √

Where They Found Her (Kimberly McCreight) √

Where’d You Go, Bernadette? (Maria Semple) ♥

The Wind Is Not a River (Brian Payton) ♥

A Window Opens (Elisabeth Egan)  ♥

The World’s Strongest Man (Harrison Scott Key) ♥

You Should Have Known (Jean Hanff Korelitz) √


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