What I’m Reading: The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet


I just finished up the audio version of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford.

I had seen this book in stores and have almost bought it.  Then I say it on the lending library list and snapped it up.  WONDERFUL book!  Of course there’s a boy and girl and a lot of history in and around WWII…a little modern day thrown in too.   What’s not to love??

Here’s what Amazon had to say, “This simple act takes old Henry Lee back to the 1940s, at the height of the war, when young Henry’s world is a jumble of confusion and excitement, and to his father, who is obsessed with the war in China and having Henry grow up American. While “scholarshipping” at the exclusive Rainier Elementary, where the white kids ignore him, Henry meets Keiko Okabe, a young Japanese American student. Amid the chaos of blackouts, curfews, and FBI raids, Henry and Keiko forge a bond of friendship–and innocent love–that transcends the long-standing prejudices of their Old World ancestors. And after Keiko and her family are swept up in the evacuations to the internment camps, she and Henry are left only with the hope that the war will end, and that their promise to each other will be kept.

Forty years later, Henry Lee is certain that the parasol belonged to Keiko. In the hotel’s dark dusty basement he begins looking for signs of the Okabe family’s belongings and for a long-lost object whose value he cannot begin to measure. Now a widower, Henry is still trying to find his voice–words that might explain the actions of his nationalistic father; words that might bridge the gap between him and his modern, Chinese American son; words that might help him confront the choices he made many years ago. 

Set during one of the most conflicted and volatile times in American history, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet is an extraordinary story of commitment and enduring hope. In Henry and Keiko, Jamie Ford has created an unforgettable duo whose story teaches us of the power of forgiveness and the human heart.”

I immediately went to look to see what other books the author has written and realized I’ve read Songs of Willow Frost: A Novel and reviewed it on the blog here.  No other books by the author at present but I’ll be watching for more.

Amazon readers say 4.4 stars.  I’m going with 5 stars.  I LOVED it.

What I’m Reading: A Quilt for Christmas


I just finished up reading the book, A Quilt for Christmas, by Sandra Dallas.  I am a LONG time Sandra Dallas fan.  In fact, some of my top favorite books are by her.  I’ve especially loved Alice’s Tulips, The Diary of Mattie Spenser, The Persian Pickle Club and Tallgrass…all of them are highly loved by me.  When I saw this new book out I jumped at the chance to get it.

Typically I am an audio book girl but this one I read in hard copy.  I have to say I miss reading actual books.  I love my Kindle and all but an actually book has something audio books and Kindle books just don’t have.

The book was good…It was shorter than her other books and a little less in depth-but perfect for something to read this time of year.  It’s a simple story with an uncomplicated plot but not trivial.  I loved all the references to quilting.  I loved that characters can change their way of thinking.

Like all of her books, this is historical fiction.  This happens to take place during the and just following the Civil War.  It would be fun to have a companion quilting book to go with the actual book.

Here’s what Amazon had to say, “In Sandra Dallas’ novel A Quilt for Christmas, it is 1864 and Eliza Spooner’s husband Will has joined the Kansas volunteers to fight the Confederates, leaving her with their two children and in charge of their home and land.  Eliza is confident that he will return home, and she helps pass the months making a special quilt to keep Will warm during his winter in the army.  When the unthinkable happens, she takes in a woman and child who have been left alone and made vulnerable by the war, and she finds solace and camaraderie amongst the women of her quilting group.  And when she is asked to help hide an escaped slave, she must decide for herself what is right, and who can she can count on to help her.”

Amazon readers say 4.7 stars.  I think I would give it 4.5…only because I have liked the earlier books I listed by her just a little bit better.  I still recommend this one, I’d just say if you’re only going to read one of her books, pick one of the other ones first.  You can read a portion of the book on Amazon’s website.  Reading that will likely give you an idea if the book is for you.

I did pick up another of the author’s books that I haven’t read yet, Fallen Women.  It’s going on my night stand and will be the next book I read.  Has anyone read it?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...