Breaking Up With a Book…Again

Ugghh…I really don’t like giving up on a book, but man, June was really chalk full of break ups! A few were due to bad audiobook narrators, some were just plain bad timing, and one in particular was just not my kind of book.

The Good:


Jackaby by William Ritter

Set in the late 1800s, young Abigail Rook has just arrived in New England. While asking around for a job, she runs into a mysteriously callous young gentleman. Lucky for her, she made quite the impression, so when she seeks him out (unbeknownst to her) for a position as an assistant, he surprisingly gives her a shot. But, little does she know, Jackaby is a daring detective on the hunt for a serial killer.

The premise of this series is completely intriguing and I hope to read it someday, but for now, it’s on the back-burner. Why? I just couldn’t stand the audiobook narrator, Nicola Barber. Her intonation was too mellow and her voice a little too high pitched for my tastes. There was no way I could listen to her for even an hour.


 We, the Drowned by Carsten Jensen

We, the Drowned is an epic adventure, full of harrowing courage and passion for one’s country as a group of Danish soldiers set sail to defend their nation against the Germans. Along the journey, a few of the men decide to remain at high seas, seeking a life of adventure and anonymity – one of the men, Laurids Madsen, leaves behind a young family, spurring a global search for a missing father once his eldest son is of age. Spanning nations and years, the novel is an epic historical adventure filled with mystery and intrigue.

What a beautiful cover! Even now, I’m still super excited to read this book! Unfortunately, there are way too many characters to keep track of and the narrator’s voice (Simon Vance) is very soothing = I kind of zoned out. At 688 pages, it’ll be some time before I’m able to get back to it, but it’s definitely on the list to finish!

The Bad:


Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler

A debut novel by Stephanie Danler, Tess has just graduated from college, looking for something bigger and better she makes the big move to New York City to chase a dream she hopes will appear. With a little luck, and her good looks, she lands a highly coveted job at one of the City’s premier restaurants as a back-waiter, and in no time at all she falls for the bad-boy bartender.

Or so that’s what I presumed. What I found was something else entirely. Read around the same time as Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins, I was foolishly expecting a new adult novel about a young woman’s journey to the big city and the mistakes she’ll make on the road to success, but instead I met with a whiney, over-privileged girl who hopes everyone is there to make the big decisions for her. While the descriptions of life and food are beautiful, chalk full of quotes like:

“You’re only beginning to learn what you don’t know. First you must learn senses, your senses are never inaccurate – it’s your ideas that can be false.”

Endless comparisons between the art of wine and the mysteries of life, lyrical descriptions of foods, the dramatic ease with which waiters must learn to function – I loved these portions of the novel, but the lack of plot and an annoying lead character. She doesn’t even have a real relationship with the bartender, spending almost the entirety of the novel obsessing over him and each of the other waiters and how she’s perceived by them. I made it half-way and skimmed the rest of the novel, and you know what? I don’t think I even missed that much.

What books have you broken ties with recently? Did you like Sweetbitter?


2 thoughts on “Breaking Up With a Book…Again

  1. AJ says:

    I read Sweetbitter; I got through Sweetbitter and gave it 3.5. But I didn’t like it. The writing was trying way, way to hard.


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