- The Nightingale
- Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood
- I Was Anastasia
- The Secret Orphan
I know, only 5 books chosen? I’m the type of person that will only read if the book catches my attention. For example, it could be something I can relate to or personally experienced it myself, I’m buying the book.
Here, I have listed my most favorite to least favorite book. I am also sharing the reasons for picking out these books and a quick connection review.
As I was roaming through Target I spotted books and thought I should start reading again. So I picked up The Nightingale because the front cover said the book was going to be turned into a movie. So I thought wouldn’t it be cool to finally read a book before seeing the movie? Yes, I have never done that before because it never came to my mind.
When I first saw the word Nightingale as the title, I thought it was another weak word to describe women who were in distress. However, the author did a beautiful job at describing how women were resilient. It’s about two sisters that did what they felt was right to protect themselves and their country.
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood
After watching Trevor Noah get interviewed about his book, it took me almost one year before I ordered the book. I just thought that it was going to be another sad story of someone growing up poor. What caught my attention was in one of the YouTube videos of Trevor Noah at a comedy show and he talked about growing up with different tribes and languages. In the Hmong culture there are two common dialects but different clans. My husbands family speaks in the Hmong Ntsuab (Green) dialect while my family and I speak the Hmong Dawb (White) dialect. I know the translation of the dialects are hard to comprehend because they’re colors.
The memories that he shared were similar to every kid that grew up not being White. The similarities were not knowing where we belong, having strict parents and parents who did everything to survive. What made me different from Trevor was that I became content with the idea that if I just stay quite, I would be safe.
I got this book at the same time I got The Nightingale. I felt like if I didn’t like one, I got the other as a back up. What caught my attention was the book cover. It was a woman in traditional Korean Hanbok. How did I know that before looking up the correct words? Watching Korean dramas paid off that’s all I got to say.
What made me continue to read this book, despite the 18+ details, was the connection I felt that I was also the generation of people living in another country and wanted the country to accept me. The book had nothing to do with Pachinko which is a gambling arcade game, but the name was used because it became part of their history. It is also about four generations trying to get through the struggle of the Korean War, moving to Japan and facing racism.
I Was Anastasia
I learned about Anastasia during my middle school years that Anastasia was a Russian princess that got assassinated along with her family in 1918. Then a woman came out claiming to be the Russian Princess Anastasia. I fell in love with the Princess because I too felt hope for Anastasia to come back and claim what was rightfully hers.
The author wrote the book with the time going from present to past and past to present. One flash back that stayed in my mind was when Anna Anderson (Anastasia’s cover up name) said she woke up feeling like she was drugged with anesthesia for a long time. When she asked how long was she out for they told her three days. The doctors had no medical reason to keep her drugged or at the hospital. I don’t know why that scene was so real in my mind. It made me think about all the hardship she had to go through just to prove herself.
The Secret Orphan Child
What stood out to me about this book was the title. Quickly I thought about my daughter on how sad it would be if she was an orphan.
I thought it would be from a child’s perspective and had hoped to see from her perspective. However, it’s from the adoptive mother’s point of view. I’m not saying it was a good read, but it would have been more exciting to know what secrets the little girl was keeping from the adoptive family. I also would have wanted to know a little bit more about the secret that was revealed. It felt like a movie that ended too fast that left you hanging with a whole bunch of questions.
Feel free to share some of your recent books.