To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee – Review

The world can be a scary place when the mob takes over. When people band together, put their hands over their ears and refuse to listen, it can be dangerous to step out of line or go against the grain in any way. It is in times like this, when injustice is being perpetrated, that the people who aren’t being victimized need to stand up against those forces. Atticus Finch, one of the most beloved characters in literature, goes against his neighbours and the people in his small town to make sure that justice is served.

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Fall on Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald – Review

I don’t know what it is between me and books about strange families. Whenever I hear that a novel that I’m going to be reading has an unusual family structure, I’m chomping at the bit to read it. It may be simply that the world is a messy place and a family that has an unusual shape seems more real to me than the nuclear family that I had shoved down my throat when I was a kid. Or it might just be that there’s a mystery to unusual families that isn’t there with conventional ones. There’s a need to figure out how the different pieces of the family fit together to form a family unit which adds a depth to the proceedings that comes naturally.

Enter stage right: Fall on Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald.

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Shelter by Jung Yun – Review

Family can be tricky. Whenever there is as much emotion as there can be around families, sparks are going to fly. When you’re a child, the world can be confusing and it can be hard to process the actions of the adults around you. As you grow up, you gain the context to understand your parent’s actions and then get the mixed pleasure of struggling to redefine your parents in shades of grey rather than a binary black or white.

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The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley by Hannah Tinti – Review

I remember hearing a saying all the time that girls were closer to their fathers and boys were closer to their mothers. I’m not sure where the saying came from, but whether it was an old wive’s tale or it could be attributed to something Freudian, I’ve always been one of those daughters who is closer to their father, a niche which has been stifled in my reading history.

Many of the books I’ve read that feature families in them either have a father who is absent, a father who is placid, or one who is abusive. Thankfully, The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley by Hannah Tinti sidesteps any misgivings I may have had previously. While I went into this book gingerly, half expecting a Faulkner-esque father figure who stepped out of the pages of As I Lay Dying, I was pleasantly surprised to see that Hawley and his daughter, Loo, were able to be interesting without being simultaneously unpleasant.

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