Book Review: Welcome Home, Caroline Kline by Courtney Preiss

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Welcome Home, Caroline Kline by Courtney Preiss opens with Caroline Kline couch surfing in New York City due to her no longer having a job and her fiance breaking up with her. The cherry on top is when Caroline finds out her father is not doing well and has to go home to New Jersey to help out. She finds one thing she didn't expect . . . true love. I received an Advanced Readers Copy of Welcome Home, Caroline Kline from NetGalley for free in exchange for my honest review.  The synopsis of this book was intriguing, and I absolutely love baseball, so I couldn't wait to dig in to this story. Unfortunately, the story started off a bit slow and continued to be slow at points throughout the book. The slowness of the plot made it difficult to stay interested in the characters and their fate.  At one point, I didn't really care if I finished the story or not. With that being said, I'm glad I stuck with the book because the last 15% of Welcome Home, Caroline Kline started to

Book Review: Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan

book review mad honey jodi picoult jennifer finney boylan

Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan is a story told from alternating perspectives of Oliva and Lily.  Olivia's son Asher is dating Lily.  When Lily dies, Asher is put on trial for her murder.  What motive could Asher possibly have?  And, did he really do it?

This novel was chosen by the book club I belong to for our April 2023 discussion.  I'd heard mainly good things about the book, but I also heard negative things as well.  Not really knowing much about either author, I wasn't sure if I'd like Mad Honey.  I am so glad that I bought and read the book, and I'll tell you why below.

I love that this was a mystery told from two different characters perspectives and the fact that the reader definitely doesn't know whether Asher murdered Lily or not until the very end.  I did have suspicions that it was someone else like Asher's friend Dirk from the hockey team.  You'll have to read Mad Honey to see if I was correct or not.  I did love that the authors gave us closure on what really happened though.

There were lots of different themes throughout the novel that may or may not trigger people.  Suicide, murder, spousal abuse, bullying, and abortion are present throughout the book.  There is one other major topic that is throughout Mad Honey, and that is hormone replacement for people who are transgender as well as sex changes.  I thought Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan did a great job of presenting these topics in a delicate way.  Hopefully, people can understand what other people might go through in any of these situations and be more empathetic and less judgemental.  My heart went out to the characters who went through these situations.  I never really thought about what a transgender person goes through to become who they really are and the bullying they endure.

Another topic throughout the story is what beekeepers go through to harvest honey.  I never really thought about how this is done, and the authors did a really nice job of integrating this into the story without the science behind it detracting from the story.

There was a huge twist about halfway through the book, and it my mouth dropped open because I wasn't expecting what happened to happen.  Mad Honey is well written, poignant, and thought provoking.  Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan did an amazing job with this book, so much so, I had trouble putting it down, and I had trouble starting another book because I was still thinking about Mad Honey.  I could just gush over how well done the story is, but I won't gush.

Five out of five stars is what I give Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan.  I will definitely give some of their other books a read, and I hope that there is a sequel to this particular book.

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