Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger

I’ve been wanting to read Ordinary Grace for a long time. I had no idea what it was about, I’d only heard that I should read it. Finally it became available on my library wish list.

It is the summer of 1961 in a small town in Minnesota. Frank and his younger brother, Jake, who stutters, fill the empty summer days with walks along the river or treks into town to find a pick up baseball or game or just some town gossip. Their father, Nathan is a preacher and their mother is not sure who God really is. Ariel, the older sister, is a talented musician headed to Julliard in the fall.

That is about all I want to tell you about the story. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone. What I can tell you is that I couldn’t put this book down. Last night at 2 a.m. when I couldn’t sleep, I turned on my Kindle and kept reading. I cried and cried which didn’t help my ability to fall asleep so I kept reading. Frank and Jake grabbed my heart at hello and their view of the world around them left me speechless.

So here’s my review. Read Ordinary Grace. You won’t be able to put it down and you won’t be disappointed.

A Woman is No Man by Etaf Rum

I have to say that A Woman is No Man is probably the most important book you can read this year. Coming from me that is huge.

Isra is a shy, quiet Palestinian teenager who’s marriage is arranged by her parents, to Adam, an Arab man living in New York City. In their culture a woman is only there to service the husband and raise the children. And if the wife tries to do anything outside of these rules, the husband is free to beat her.

Unfamiliar with the American way of life, Isra is isolated from the world around her. When she only gives birth to girls, her status in the family is reduced to practically nothing. Girls are worthless and a man with only daughters is an embarrassment to his family.

A Woman is No Man will gnaw at your heart. Living in a free society we must understand that not every woman we meet on the street is as free as we might think. As women we need to support each other, keep our eyes and ears open and speak up for what is right. Read this book. I will open your eyes to the world around us in a very profound way.