After Birth by Elisa Albert

Review Summary A year has passed since Ari gave birth to Walker, though it went so badly awry she has trouble calling it “birth” and still she can’t locate herself in her altered universe. Amid the strange, disjointed rhythms of her days and nights and another impending winter in upstate New York, Ari is a …

The Space Between Us by Thrity Umrigar

Review   Summary Set in modern-day India, it is the story of two compelling and achingly real women: Sera Dubash, an upper-middle-class Parsi housewife whose opulent surroundings hide the shame and disappointment of her abusive marriage, and Bhima, a stoic illiterate hardened by a life of despair and loss, who has worked in the Dubash …

ARC: Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

Review Disclaimer: A free copy of this book was sent to the library where I worked, and I took it home for review. This review was not requested by the publisher. Summary Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem, has come to the United States to provide a better life for himself, his wife, …

In the Language of Miracles by Rajia Hassib

Review   Summary Samir and Nagla Al-Menshawy appear to have attained the American dream. After immigrating to the United States from Egypt, Samir successfully works his way through a residency and launches his own medical practice as Nagla tends to their firstborn, Hosaam, in the cramped quarters of a small apartment. Soon the growing family …

Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult

Review   Summary For over a decade, Jenna Metcalf obsesses on her vanished mom Alice. Jenna searches online, rereads journals of the scientist who studied grief among elephants. Two unlikely allies are Serenity Jones, psychic for missing people who doubts her gift, and Virgil Stanhope, jaded PI who originally investigated cases of Alice and her …

The Bees by Laline Paul

Review   Summary Born into the lowest class of her society, Flora 717 is a sanitation bee, only fit to clean her orchard hive. Living to accept, obey and serve, she is prepared to sacrifice everything for her beloved holy mother, the Queen. Yet Flora has talents that are not typical of her kin. And …

A Trail of Broken Wings by Sejal Badani

Review   Summary When her father falls into a coma, Indian American photographer Sonya reluctantly returns to the family she’d fled years before. Since she left home, Sonya has lived on the run, free of any ties, while her soft-spoken sister, Trisha, has created a perfect suburban life, and her ambitious sister, Marin, has built …

The Vagrants by Yiyun Li

Review   Summary Brilliant and illuminating, The Vagrants, Yiyun Li’s debut novel, is set in China in the late 1970s. Beijing was rocked by the Democratic Wall Movement, an anti-Communist groundswell designed to move China beyond the dark shadow of the Cultural Revolution toward a more enlightened and open society. In this powerful and beautiful story, …

Breath, Eyes, Memory by Edwidge Danticat

First off, I should make clear that this is an audiobook review. I usually don’t review audiobooks, because so much of how they come off depends on the narrator. I usually prefer to let the prose speak for itself and/or through my imagination. But I needed something to listen to while I work out and …

ARC: If You Left by Ashley Prentice Norton

I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. If You Left is a story of a struggling (read “failing”) marriage, but more than that, it’s a story of courage and freedom. When Althea, a bipolar photographer, realizes that her swings to and from manic/depressive states may …