Secret Daughter, by Shilpi Somaya Gowda: A poor Indian village woman gives birth to daughters, while her husband and his family only want a son. Her first daughter is taken from her and buried alive before she can even hold her. When she has a second daughter, Kavita and her sister make a long journey on foot to Mumbai, here they have an emotional parting at an orphanage. In the meantime, across the globe, a Californian physician named Somer suffers from a series of miscarriages and learns she will never be able to carry a baby. Read the full review here.
Eat My Globe, by Simon Majumdar: Majumdar, an Indian Brit, decides to spend one
year traveling everywhere, eating everything. If you like to travel, and you like food, you will enjoy this book. He eats a bit more red meat than comfortable for me, but his writing style was
refreshing and humorous. Read the full review here.
Mockingjay, by Suzanne Collins: Book #3 of the Hunger Games trilogy, a dystopian saga ostensibly written for young adults. Overall, I thought this was a fitting end to the series. I was relieved to be done with it, because it is highly disturbing, although thought-provoking, reading material. Read the full review here.
Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion, by Gregory Boyle: This gets my vote for the most inspiring book I read this month. The author is a Jesuit priest in LA, who started the largest gang intervention program in the country. The book is a collection of his stories about working with current and former gang members. Read the full review here.
Wedding Cake, by Lynne Hinton: If you want a light escape, this book will serve you well. It was the least memorable of all the books I read this month. Read the full review here.
Broken Glass Park, by Alina Bronsky: The direct opposite of Wedding Cake, in just about every way. The author is a Russian teen whose family emigrated to Germany. She has two dreams in life: to write a book about her mother and to kill the man who killed her mother and her boyfriend in a blood-drenched murder (in front of her children). It's an impressive first novel, but I did not like it as much as some other reviewers. Read the full review here.
Mennonite in a Little Black Dress, by Rhoda Janzen. After her life turns upside down, Janzen returns to the hearth of the Mennonite church and family in which she grew up. I enjoyed this book--Janzen has a light, humorous writing style--although I found it lacking in several ways. Read the full review here.