Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Story: You should probably know the story by now.
The Review: Of course this was a reread for me, but a new listen. For me, Pride and Prejudice is comfort food. I started the audiobook and I can just feel my whole body relax. It's great.
Calico Joe by John Grisham
The Story: Calico Joe is the rookie of the year. In his first at bat in the major leagues, he hits homers. Every single time. And then a dramatic accident changes his life forever. Our narrator, Paul Tracy, knows something not everyone does and now, 20 years later, he wants to put things right.
The Review: I really enjoyed this story. The telling of the opening games of Joe's career are so exciting and as I listened, I was on the edge of my seat (metaphorically). And then I had to remind myself that this is actually a fictional story.
It was interesting to get the perspective of the narrator. Paul was 10 years old when Joe started in the major leagues and now as an adult he looks back at that exciting summer and the guilt that he has carried since then. It's got a family drama, a coming-of-age, and a sports story.
I recommend it.
If I Stay by Gail Forman
Where She Went by Gail Forman
The Story: This is a young adult book and sequel. In the first a girl, Mia, and her family are in a terrible car accident. Her entire family dies, and she is taken to the hospital with serious injuries. As doctors work on her body and her friends/extended family wait, she has to decide if she will live or die. The sequel follows her boyfriend, Adam, in the aftermath.
The Review: These are very short novels and I listened to them while I cooked all afternoon. I got really caught up in the stories and really wanted to know how it would work out for these two.
That said, these are young adult writing, and they are a little dramatic and overwrought. But going into them with that understanding, I found them pretty enjoyable. For me there was also the connection of the medical stuff and Forman describes the ongoing surgeries and recovery that Mia will have to do and knowing something about some of that means I really understood why she would pick not waking up from her coma. In the books, so much of the focus of the characters around Mia is the emotional grief of waking up and not having her family, but I was also really concerned about the physical side.
If you are good with dramatic, dark, young adult novels, you can read these.