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Jennifer's books

Goodbye, Vitamin
American Fire: Love, Arson, and Life in a Vanishing Land
Mrs. Hemingway
Poetry Will Save Your Life: A Memoir
The Princess Diarist
Watch Me Disappear
Hello, Sunshine
Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success
A Man Called Ove
The Heirs
Our Souls at Night
White Fur
Confessions of a Domestic Failure
The Map That Leads to You
The Little French Bistro
Love the Wine You're With
Always and Forever, Lara Jean
Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore
The Party
New Boy


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Monday, October 1, 2018

Book Review: What Luck, This Life

What Luck, This Life by Kathryn Schwille



My readers know I am often a fan of depressing books. However, I do like my depressing books to come with a bit of hopefulness. Unfortunately, What Luck, This Life is just bleak and hopeless.

The novel is a collection of vignettes about the lives of those in the small, economically ravished town of Kiser, Texas in the days surrounding when the pieces of the Columbia Space Shuttle made their way from outer space to the grounds of Kiser.

Generally, I like novels that are composed of a wide cast of characters tied together by one commonality. In What Luck, This Life, the author does an excellent job of developing the characters within just a few pages before moving on to describe a new character in the next chapter. There were characters that disgusted me and characters I felt drawn to. Overall, character development was the highlight of the novel for me.

There is not a linear plot in this novel. Instead, each chapter tells the story of the space shuttle's break-up and how it affected the life of the character whose life is the focus in that particular chapter. In this case, the reader gets to meet several different people in this town and experience the tragedy from various viewpoints.

Ultimately, this novel is depressing. There is little hope - or any at all - for the town and its inhabitants. While the writing was strong, it was not a book that was easy to read.

Thanks to the author and Hub City Press for providing me with this review copy. 

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