Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Bean Trees

The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver is the second novel I have read by her. It is defintely a book that kept me interested in the storyline and wondering what would happen next. Taylor lives in Kentucky and decides she wants to get out of the small town she lives in. Once she saves up some money, she leaves for some destination in the west. In Oklahoma she ends up acquiring a toddler from a stranger. She continues on and ends up in Tuscon, Arizona because her car cannot go on. Taylor makes some new friends and learns a lot about life in another place. I would recommend this book because it is a quick read but also makes you think. A book club would have plenty to discuss after reading this as well.

Monday, October 6, 2008

The Shape of Mercy

Susan Meissner's newest book is The Shape of Mercy. This book is contemporary fiction, but also deals with the Salem Witch Trials that happened in the 1600's. Lauren Durough lives in California and is a rich girl attending a state school. She decides to get a job, but does not get any job, but a job transcribing a journal of Mercy Hayworth for the journal's owner, Abigail Boyles. Mercy lived in the Salem area during the time of the Salem Witch Trials.
I enjoyed reading the story because Meissner keeps you wondering what will happen and how what happens will change Lauren. She does a good job weaving a story from this century with the story of Mercy Hayworth. This also made me wonder more about the Salem Witch Trials as mostly I have just heard about them in passing and I don't remember if we talked about them in American history. This would be a good book for a book club to read, though it does jump back and forth from present to past, which I know my sister does not like. I will likely read it again sometime, and I think it is one of Meissner's better books. If I had to choose my favorites of Susan Meissner's, it might be a tie between this one and Blue Heart Blessed.