Behold the Dreamers A Novel by Imbolo Mbue

This is the moving and poinant story of Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem.  He dreams of a better life for his family that what they left behind and his luck seems to be improving when he lands a job working as a driver for an executive at :Lehman Brothers.  Jende’s wife dreams of being a pharmacist and she works very hard in her classes to have her dream, but when Jende hits a road block with immigration he must decide how much he is willing to risk for his American dream.  A touching story of a family with hopes and dreams and drive.netgalley

 

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Results May Vary by Bethany Chase

When Caroline’s marriage falls apart unexpectedly from a cause she never even saw on her radar she must decide how to pick up the pieces and rebuild, but the most pressing question is does that rebuilding involve her husband Adam?  Can their marriage be rebuilt or does their shared road end at this point?  Caroline must answer all these pressing questions while trying to figure out how she feels and decide what she wants for her future and who will be a part of it.  Since she has been with Adam since high school in many ways this is Caroline’s first chance to stand on her own as an adult and navigate the world which is sometimes friendly to her and often not.  A warm and witty look at marriage divorce and love.

 

As an extra bonus I also have a comment from Bethany about her writing process.  As a reader I am always curious about how an author works and I thought you might be as well.

Bethany Chase Writing Process

 

True story: I find it easier to write on the subway—which I often do to milk some productivity out of my long commute—than at home. Partly it’s the pressure to see how much I can get done (500 words is a really great subway day!), but more likely, it’s my inability to download cat videos.

Thank you to book sparks for providing a copy of the book and allowing me to be a part of the blog tour.

 

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Chasing Water: Elegy of an Olympian,by Anthony Ervin and Constantine Markides

As you can imagine this is a memoir of an Olympic athlete, and one that is competing in Rio.  I found Anthony’s story touching and heartfelt and I thought it was so great to be able to see into the day to day life of such a driven athlete.  I admired his goals to stay a student and finish his degree rather than become a professional athlete.  Swimming is definitely his muse and like most of us there dynamic has been rocky at times to say the least, Ervin even gave up swimming at one point only to be drawn back in and again become an Olympian.  Over the course of his journey he has learned many important truths about himself, and I enjoyed sharing that journey with him.  Can’t wait to see what happens in Rio, I hope he goes for the gold.  Thank you to the publisher AKASHIC BOOKS for my free copy so that I could provide this review.

Beneath Wandering Stars by Ashlee Cowles August 1

This is the deeply moving story of  Gabriela who honors a promise she made to her brother that she would  walk the Camino de Santiago through Spain, making a pilgrimage in his name.  As he lays in a coma in a military hospital she sets off on her quest, but her traveling companion is her brothers best friend who she despises on her best days and with her family and her mood off kilter the pairing could end before it  and the pilgrimage even start, yet as they travel from place to place and meet a variety of other people Gabi learns many things about herself and her world and realizes that may-be her brother’s taste in friends is not so bad after all.  A moving and emotional story about family and love and the changes and loss that life throws at all of us.