"We read to know we are not alone." ~C.S. Lewis

Reading transports me to another time, another place.  I become immersed in another reality that fully returns the investment of wading through a book of words.  It is a layered process that brings me laughter and tears, makes me envision and recreate, speaks to me in whispers and shouts, and renders me in exaltation or despair.  It is my secret love affair.

The following are my latest reads in reverse order, with reviews on  

Sandra's bookshelf: read

Gone Girl
4 of 5 stars true
A suspenseful, fast read. I enjoyed the process of reading this book because it kept me wishing the day away so that I can get to it at night. Talk about a psycho woman! At first I was not thrilled with the ending, but then I agreed t...
5 of 5 stars true
Excellent read. It brought forth tears, laughs, goosebumps, and lots of warm-and-fuzzies. The story left me thinking about the characters long after I finished the book. It really is nice to read about a main character who is a good, ...
Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science
4 of 5 stars true
Written by a surgeon, this non-fiction book is an excellent read for medical professionals as well as the people they treat. Gawande discusses medicine, and specifically surgery, as a constantly changing body of knowledge used by doctor...
4 of 5 stars true
I have never in my life both loved and hated a book at the same time as I have this one. This was the book that took me forever to read, putting it down to finish several others before finishing it. If Verghese of Cutting for Stone is ...
Before I Go To Sleep
3 of 5 stars true
Named on several lists of "must-read summer thrillers," I was intrigued by its premise. Christine wakes up everyday not remembering anything: who she is, where she is, and how old she is. This type of amnesia erases all memory while th...
In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin
4 of 5 stars true
In this very well-researched non-fiction historical book, Larson tells the story of Hitler's Nazi Germany through the experiences of U.S. ambassador, William Dodd, and his promiscuous daughter, Martha. Dodd and his family move to German...
A Thousand Splendid Suns
5 of 5 stars true
The author of The Kite Runner, Hosseini delivers another beautifully written Afghan tale to us. This is the story of two unrelated women brought together by fate, war, and humanity. At first separately, the two women's lives are told an...
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
4 of 5 stars true
Having worked in a science laboratory for at least ten years of my life, I've come across the term "HeLa cells" many times, but I never knew the origin of them until I read this book. Science labs across the world use these cells that c...
Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother
3 of 5 stars true
My first reaction to the snippet that Wall Street Journal ran on this book was full of rage, disbelief, and dismissal. From my own upbringing, I am all too familiar with this type of parenting -- one that I am careful not to replicate. ...
Water for Elephants
5 of 5 stars true
A surprisingly excellent read, this is a story about life in a traveling circus. The book opens with old Jacob in a nursing home, and flashes back in time to tell about his life with the Benzini Circus during the early part of the Great...
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
3 of 5 stars true
A sweet novel about innocent love, first-time author Ford writes about a Chinese American man in his fifties who discovers a parasol that belonged to his Japanese American friend, Keiko, when they were in middle school in Seattle in the ...
The Help
5 of 5 stars true
An instant sensation from a debut author, with over five thousand reviews on (at the time of my reading), this book leaves most people uplifted by a sort of sisterly tenderness shared by the characters in it. A white college ...
Cutting for Stone
5 of 5 stars true
Some writers have a way with words, and some writers are great storytellers. Verghese, a physician and a writer, is a storyteller. I read this book on my Kindle, and finished the book without realizing the length of it. It is a fascin...

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