10 Books of February

My TBR for February had  six books. I had planned on reading 2 memoirs, 2 African Literature novels and at least 2 thrillers. However, I ended up reading 4 memoirs, 2 African Lit and 4 other great books so a total of ten books.


My favorite book  was The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I also really loved The Color Purple by Alice Walker. I hope you find a book that interests you from my February reading list.


1) Abducted: The Fourteen Year Fight to Find My Children by Jacqueline Pascarl


Abducted featured image

About the Book: At seventeen, Jacqueline Pascarl married a royal prince and embarked on what she believed would be a fairy-tale existence. But it soon became a nightmare. After years of abuse at the hands of her husband, Jacqueline escaped with her children, hoping to leave her past behind. But what followed would haunt her for the next fourteen years.In this heart-rending story, Jacqueline describes how her husband kidnapped their two young children and forced them to cut off all contact with her. She tells of the pain and helplessness she felt at their loss but also of how she channeled her grief, forging an existence as an aid worker and humanitarian ambassador, all the while desperately hoping to hear news of them

Why I picked the book: I found the book at an Inama Bookshop(street vendors who sell books) and loved the blurb. Although it was secondhand, it  looked pretty new.

Thoughts: I loved parts of the books, In particular the first and the last section. The middle section was a bit too slow for me.


2) Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt



About the Book This is the memoir of Frank McCourt, born in Depression-era Brooklyn to recent Irish immigrants and raised in the slums of Limerick, Ireland. Frank’s mother, Angela, has no money to feed the children since Frank’s father, Malachy, rarely works, and when he does he drinks his wages. Yet Malachy — exasperating, irresponsible, and beguiling — does nurture in Frank an appetite for the one thing he can provide: a story. Frank lives for his father’s tales of Cuchulain, who saved Ireland, and of the Angel on the Seventh Step, who brings his mother babies.


Why I picked the book: I had been planning on reading this book for a while following a series of recommendations. I finally found a copy at our library and absolutely had to read it.

Thoughts: I really loved this book. The story is quite heartbreaking, the McCourt’s family went through unimaginable hardships. I enjoyed the narrative. I also liked that it was narrated by Frank McCourt through the years hence taking readers through the journey of his growth.
3) Dreams from my father: A story of race and inheritance by Barrack Obama



About the Book: Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance is a memoir by Barack Obama. It was first published in 1995 as Obama was preparing to launch his political career in a campaign for Illinois Senate,[1] five years after being elected as the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review in 1990.[2] The book chronicles the events of Obama’s life up until his entry into law school in 1988.

Why I picked the book: I heard about the book a while ago and was simply curious about Obama’s life. I borrowed the book from a library

Thoughts: I enjoyed the narrative and in particular, the last section about his visit to Kenya. It’s a wonderful and inspiring memoir.


4) I am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced by Nujood Ali

Nujood 1

“I’m a simple village girl who has always obeyed the orders of my father and brothers. Since forever, I have learned to say yes to everything. Today I have decided to say no.”Nujood Ali

About the Book: Nujood Ali’s childhood came to an abrupt end in 2008 when her father arranged for her to be married to a man three times her age. With harrowing directness, Nujood tells of abuse at her husband’s hands and of her daring escape. With the help of local advocates and the press, Nujood obtained her freedom—an extraordinary achievement in Yemen, where almost half of all girls are married under the legal age. Nujood’s courageous defiance of both Yemeni customs and her own family has inspired other young girls in the Middle East to challenge their marriages. Hers is an unforgettable story of tragedy, triumph, and courage.

Why I picked the book: The title, absolutely, I got the book because I was intrigued by the title. And then I found out that it was a true story, absolutely had to read it.
Thoughts: A heartbreaking story. It’s the kind of thing that you read wishing that it was fiction but then it’s not. Nujood is a brave little girl who went through something that no little girl should ever experience.
5) The Color Purple by Alice Walker


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About the Book:Taking place mostly in rural Georgia, the story focuses on the life of women of color in the southern United States in the 1930s, addressing numerous issues including their exceedingly low position in American social culture. The novel has been the frequent target of censors and appears on the American Library Association list of the 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 2000-2009 at number seventeen because of the sometimes explicit content, particularly in terms of violence.

Why I picked the book: I have had this book in my personal library since last year. I don’t know why I took so long to read it. It is such a beautiful book.
Thoughts: I loved the book. I absolutely loved Celia and even Shug Avery. Loved how unique the narration was whereby the story was told in letters. I am truly glad that I read this book.












6) Behind Closed Doors by BA Paris



About the Book: The 2016 debut bloggers can’t stop raving about. Perfect for fans of The Girl on the Train and The Ice Twins. Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace.

He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do. Though, you’d like to get to know Grace better.

But it’s difficult, because you realise Jack and Grace are never apart.

Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows.

Sometimes, the perfect marriage is the perfect lie.

Why I picked the book: This book is widely acclaimed especially in the blogosphere. I picked it mainly because someone told me that it’s like The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins.
Thoughts: I enjoyed the story. It’s quite fast paced. I haven’t read such as suspenseful thriller in quite a while. I was on the edge of my seat with each new twist. The book will keep you guessing up to the end.


7) The Other Side of Truth by Beverly Naidoo




About the Book: After the murder of their mother, twelve-year-old Sade and her younger brother are smuggled out of Nigeria by their journalist father to escape the corrupt military government and growing violence. They are sent to their uncle in London, but when they arrive, he is missing and they are abandoned, passed between foster homes. Their father escapes to England to find them — but he will be sent back to Nigeria unless Sade can find a way to tell the world what happened to her family.

A Silver Medal winner of England’s Smarties Book Prize, Beverly Naidoo’s new novel explores the issues of family, exile, and freedom wtih eloquence and stunning realism.

Why I picked the book: I wanted to balance my books for this month by including some good African Literature. I picked this book from the library because I loved the synopsis.
Thoughts: It’s an interesting story but I think it’s more suited for the YA readers


8) Crackdown by Njuguna Mutonya


About the Book: Njuguna Mutonya was born in Thika in 1960. At Nyeri High School he got his first taste of political activism campaigning for Waruru Kanja, a deeply nationalistic post independence Kenyan politician. Njuguna then joined the University of Nairobi during its most turbulent period (1980-1984) under Daniel Arap Moi’s regime. He graduated in Political Science and trained in journalism before being deployed as District Information Officer at Mombasa, a Kenyan Coast. Njuguna was arrested for sedition in 1986 and released in 1989.

Why I picked it: The book is based on true events about what a journalist went through in the Nyayo Torture Chambers in 1989. I was curious to read about the stories that make up part of Kenya’s dark history.
Thoughts: We cannot run away from our pasts no matter how ugly they are. This is a book about resilience and bravery that everyone should read.
9) The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

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About the Book : It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.

Why I picked the book: Quite a number of people had recommended this book to me.

Thoughts: I really can’t explain just how much I loved this book. It’s the kind of book that you want to hug and keep close to you. I want to reread the book even if it broke my heart.I highly recommend it. Seriously, everyone should read this one.index


10) P.S: I Love you by Cecilia Ahern

About the Book: Holly couldn’t live without her husband Gerry, until the day she had to. They were the kind of young couple who could finish each other’s sentences. When Gerry succumbs to a terminal illness and dies, 30-year-old Holly is set adrift, unable to pick up the pieces. But with the help of a series of letters her husband left her before he died and a little nudging from an eccentric assortment of family and friends, she learns to laugh, overcome her fears, and discover a world she never knew existed.

Why I picked the book: I bought it from an Inama Bookshop. I loved the blurb and the cover and the title too.
Thoughts: I liked the book; it was an easy and fun read. There are sections that I thought were a bit over the top but that didn’t mess up the plot.



I joined the goodreads reading challenge this year for the first time and my plan was to read 50 books this year.  I am now reading, The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon which is my 22nd book for 2016. You can join the challenge too, click here for more details.

Attribution: All synopsis(about the book) were obtained from here.

John Grisham

Author of the month, February 2016

The Client was my first John Grisham novel. This was back in the 90s and although, I can’t  recall how I got the book but I do remember just how much I was captivated by the narrative. It made such an indelible impression on me and that is how I became John Grisham’s fan. In my opinion, Grisham is one of the world’s best fiction writers.

“In life, finding a voice is speaking and living the truth. Each of you is an original. Each of you has a distinctive voice. When you find it, your story will be told. You will be heard.”
― John Grisham

If you like John Grisham like I do, well here are some interesting facts about him:
i. He is a trained lawyer and practiced law in Mississippi for a decade. His specialty was criminal defense and personal injury litigation. Writing was his hobby and this he did this on the side during court recess
ii. Growing up, Grisham wanted to be a professional baseball player
iii. His novel, A Time to Kill was inspired by a case about a 12 year old girl rape victim. After hearing the girl testifying in front of a jury, John Grisham started thinking about what would have happened if her father had killed the assailants.
iv. It took 3 years to write his first novel. A Time to Kill was rejected by 28 publishers before Wynwood Press decided to publish.
v. Grisham did not give up. Instead, he began writing his second novel, The Firm, which later became a motion picture. This book did so well and ended up on the New York’s Best Seller List for 47 weeks.
vi. His next books, The Pelican Brief and The Client were also best sellers and by this time, John Grisham had established himself as a master in legal thriller. His first book, A Time To Kill was republished and this time, it became a bestseller
vii. From 1988 when he wrote, A Time to Kill, John Grisham has written a novel each year. His novels have been translated into 42 languages and sold worldwide

Personal life: John Grisham has been married for 34 years and has two children


“I don’t start a novel until I have lived with the story for awhile to the point of actually writing an outline and after a number of books I’ve learned that the more time I spend on the outline the easier the book is to write. And if I cheat on the outline I get in trouble with the book.”
― John Grisham

His Books include:
• A Time To Kill (1989)
• The Firm (1991)
• The Pelican Brief (1992)
• The Client (1993)
• The Chamber (1994
• The Rainmaker (1995
• The Runaway Jury (1996)
• The Partner (1997)
• The Street Lawyer (1998
• The Testament (1999)
• The Brethren (2000)
• A Painted House† (2001)
• Skipping Christmas† (2001)
• The Summons (2002)
• The King of Torts (2003)
• Bleachers† (2003)
• The Last Juror (2004)
• The Broker (2005)
• The Innocent Man (2006)
• Playing for Pizza† (2007)
• The Appeal (2008)
• The Associate (2009)
• Ford County (2009)
• The Confession (2010)
• The Litigators (2011
• Calico Joe† (2012)
• The Racketeer (2012)
• Sycamore Row (2013)
• Gray Mountain (2014)
• Rogue Lawyer (2015)


Well, that’s John Grisham. One of my favorite authors and I think his story is quite inspiring too. I don’t know if I would have continued writing if my first book had been rejected by 28 publishers. Nevertheless, thanks to his fortitude, millions of people all over the world get to enjoy reading stories.
Below are reviews of some of the Grisham Books that I have read:



Eleven Books of January

My Reading Challenge

woman reading

I plan to read 50 books this year and that is my reading challenge for 2016. I don’t have a reason as to why I settled on 50 and not 100. Not even sure if it’s really a challenge for me  given that I have already read 11 books so far this year. Nevertheless; it’s a starting point.

So this is what I read in January;
11. The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives by Lola Shoneyin


About the book:
A plump, vain, and prosperous middle-aged man of robust appetites, Baba Segi is the patriarch of a large household that includes a quartet of wives and seven children. But his desire to possess more just might be his undoing.

And his wives . . .

Iya Segi—the bride of Baba Segi’s youth, a powerful, vindictive woman who will stop at nothing to protect her favored position as ruler of her husband’s home. Iya Tope—Baba Segi’s second wife, a shy, timid woman whose decency and lust for life are overshadowed by fear. Iya Femi—the third wife, a scheming woman with crimson lips and expensive tastes who is determined to attain all that she desires, no matter what the cost. Bolanle—Babi Segi’s fourth and youngest wife, an educated woman wise to life’s misfortunes who inspires jealousy in her fellow wives . . . and who harbors a secret that will expose shocking truths about them all

Why I picked it: I was on the road on a three hour journey. I had started reading a hard copy of: Abducted: The Fourteen Year Fight to Find My Children by Jacqueline Parscal. However, when night fell, I had to find something to read on my tablet. That is when I remembered that I had this book.

Thoughts: witty, enjoyable and quite thrilling

“Men are so simple. They will believe anything.”
Lola Shoneyin, The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives

10. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold


About the Book
The Lovely Bones is a 2002 novel by Alice Sebold. It is the story of a teenage girl who, after being raped and murdered, watches from her personal Heaven as her family and friends struggle to move on with their lives while she comes to terms with her own death

Why I picked it: I heard about the book from a forum that was discussing Room by Emma Donoghue. I decided to read it based on the uniqueness of the narrator. Luckily, this is another book that I found on the bookshelves of our lovely library at my workplace

Thoughts: It was a good story, loved the uniqueness of a posthumous narrator. The book made me think about life after death

“My name is Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered.”
Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones

9. Dear John by Nicholas Sparks

About the Book
John Tyree is a 23 year old in the army who goes home on leave, where he lives in Wilmington, North Carolina with his father. There on the beach he meets Savannah Lynn Curtis, a college student working for Habitat for Humanity. John and Savannah fall in love in the week that he is on leave from the army. John has to go back to war and leaves Savannah with the vow to come back and marry her. They communicate by writing letters and phone calls trying to sustain the relationship they had in the short time they were together.

Why I picked it: I was looking for a book to buy (not to read). I have a number of books that I haven’t yet read but like any other books shopaholic, I never feel like I have enough books. I found this book somewhere on the streets of Nairobi (Inama Bookshop) and bought it at a dollar (100 bob) and decided to read it because the cover looked interesting and plus I had already watched the movie

Thoughts: I loved it. It’s a good romantic story, not too mushy or tragic like most Sparks books. I enjoyed the easy flow of the narrative.

“I finally understood what true love meant…love meant that you care for another person’s happiness more than your own, no matter how painful the choices you face might be.”
Nicholas Sparks, Dear John

8. The Return Journey by Maeve Binchy

About the Book:
In this extraordinary collection of stories, the New York Times-bestselling author of Evening Class and This Year it Will Be Different once again reveals her incomparable understanding of matters of the heart. In The Return Journey, Maeve Binchy brings us sons and lovers, daughters and strangers, husbands and wives in their infinite variety–powerfully compelling stories of love, loss, revelation, and reconciliation.

A secretary’s silent passion for her boss meets the acid test on a business trip….A man and a woman’s mutual disdain at first sight shows how deceptive appearances can be….An insecure wife clings to the illusion of order, only to discover chaos at the hands of a house sitter who opens the wrong doors….A pair of star-crossed travelers take each other’s bags, and then learn that when you unlock a stranger’s suitcase, you enter a stranger’s life. In their company are many more, whose poignant, ironic, often humorous stories–unforgettable slices of life–make up The Return Journey, a spellbinding trip into the human heart.

Why I picked it: I once heard someone claim that Maeve Binchy is one of the world’s best writers. When I came across this book at the library, I had to pick it just to find out whether the claim about Binchy was true

Thoughts: I haven’t read a collection of short stories in a long time. This book made me miss traveling. It’s an easy, fun read.

“I don’t have ugly ducklings turning into swans in my stories. I have ugly ducklings turning into confident ducks.”
Maeve Binchy

7. The Help by Kathyrn Stockett

The Help 1

About the Book:
Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone. Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken. Minny, Aibileen’s best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody’s business, but she can’t mind her tongue, so she’s lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.
Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women—mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends—view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t.

Why I picked the book: I have had this book in my reading list for quite sometime and finally decided to read it this year. Once I got started, I was hooked to the end.

Thoughts: I should have read it ages ago. It is a good story that I also found it to be very thought provoking.

“Ever morning, until you dead in the ground, you gone have to make this decision. You gone have to ask yourself, “Am I gone believe what them fools say about me today?”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

6. Hiding in Plain Sight by Nuruddin Farah


About the Book
When Bella learns of the murder of her beloved half brother by political extremists in Mogadiscio, she’s in Rome. The two had different fathers but shared a Somali mother, from whom Bella’s inherited her freewheeling ways. An internationally known fashion photographer, dazzling but aloof, she comes and goes as she pleases, juggling three lovers. But with her teenage niece and nephew effectively orphaned – their mother abandoned them years ago—she feels an unfamiliar surge of protective feeling. Putting her life on hold, she journeys to Nairobi, where the two are in boarding school, uncertain whether she can—or must—come to their rescue. When their mother resurfaces, reasserting her maternal rights and bringing with her a gale of chaos and confusion that mirror the deepening political instability in the region, Bella has to decide how far she will go to obey the call of sisterly responsibility.

Why I picked the book: This was a gift from a Secret Santa from my Book Club

Thoughts: The story-line was good but the bias against Kenya(and Kenyans) left a bitter taste in my mouth

“Death in Somalia seldom bothers to announce its arrival. In fact, death calls with the arrogance of a guest confident on receiving a warm welcome at any time, no question asked.”
Nuruddin Farah, Hiding in Plain Sight

5. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

The Secret Life 2
About the Book
Set in South Carolina during 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of a fourteen year old white girl, Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed. When Lily’s fierce-hearted “stand-in mother,” Rosaleen, insults three racists in town, they escape to Tiburon, South Carolina—a town that holds the secret to her mother’s past. Taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters, Lily finds refuge in their mesmerizing world of bees, honey, and the Black Madonna.
Lily starts a journey as much about her understanding of the world, as about the mystery surrounding her mother. The Secret Life of Bees is a major literary triumph about the search for love and belonging, a novel that possesses a rare wisdom about life and the power and divinity of the female spirit.

Why I picked the book: I found this book while perusing the bookshelves of our library. Honestly, I picked it because the title sounded familiar. It just sounded like one of those books that everyone else has read.

Thoughts: It really is one of those books that everyone should read. This is brilliant yet moving narration that all women especially should read.

“Someone who thinks death is the scariest thing doesn’t know a thing about life.”
Sue Monk Kidd, The Secret Life of Bees

4. Room by Emma Donoghue

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About the Book
To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it’s where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it’s not enough…not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son’s bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, Room is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another.

Why I picked this book: It was recommended by a book lover on Hooked on Books on facebook. In addition, I heard that the story was inspired by the Josef/Elisabeth Fritz story.

Thoughts: Another great book. I loved the fact that the narrator was a five year old. It was an interesting and fresh perspective. The story was sad (heartbreaking, really) but quite intriguing at the same time. A very moving story.

“Scared is what you’re feeling. Brave is what you’re doing.”
Emma Donoghue, Room

3. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

The Girl on the Train

About the book

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

Why I picked the book: This is the book that my Book Club is currently reading

Thoughts: I absolutely loved this book. It’s a fast paced thriller that keeps readers guessing up to the end. I can see why it has been compared to Gone Girl by Gillian Fynn. It’s really that good.

“let’s be honest: women are still only really valued for two things—their looks and their role as mothers.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

2. ‘Abduction’ by John Grisham

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About the Book

Theodore Boone is back in a new adventure, and the stakes are higher than ever. When his best friend, April, disappears from her bedroom in the middle of the night, no one, not even Theo Boone-who knows April better than anyone-has answers. As fear ripples through his small hometown and the police hit dead ends, it’s up to Theo to use his legal knowledge and investigative skills to chase down the truth and save April.

Why I picked the book: It’s the second book in the Theodore Boone series. The first book had such a good ending that got me curious enough to read the second one. In addition, after meeting all the characters in the first book, I wanted to know how Theo would handle the abduction of his best friend.

Thoughts: It’s an easy read like the first one but again, better suited for young adults or the young at heart.

“And I’m sure Theo can always find her.”

― John Grisham, The Abduction


1. The Kid Lawyer (from the Theodore Boone Series) by John Grisham.

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About the Book (synopsis)
Meet Theodore Boone In the small city of Strattenburg, there are many lawyers, and though he’s only thirteen years old, Theo Boone thinks he’s one of them. Theo knows every judge, policeman, court clerk—and a lot about the law. He dreams of being a great trial lawyer, of a life in the courtroom.

But Theo finds himself in court much sooner than expected. Because he knows so much—maybe too much—he is suddenly dragged into the middle of a sensational murder trial. A cold-blooded killer is about to go free, and only Theo knows the truth. The stakes are high, but Theo won’t stop until justice is served.

Why I picked this book: I was looking for something to read and was intrigued when I found out that Grisham had published a Young- Adult series. I loved John Grisham books and so had to check it out

Thoughts: I enjoyed reading the book. It’s clearly meant for younger readers but I still liked it and so I think even older readers may enjoy it.


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Plans February, 2016: So those were my eleven books of January 2016. I have already written the full reviews which will be posted on a weekly basis on this blog all the way to April. I expect February to be quite busy for me because of school and work so my plan is to read four books. I think I will read, an autobiography, thriller, African fiction and a classic. Let’s see how the month goes.

On my reading list:

1. Abducted: The Fourteen Year Fight to Find My Children by Jacqueline Parscal
2. Shantarama by Gregory David Robert
3. Angela’s Ashes by Arthur Golden
4. Dreams of my father: A story of race and inheritance by Barrack Obama
5. Dust by Yvonne Odhiambo Owuor
6. P.S: I Love you by Cecilia Ahern

Okay maybe I will read 6 books instead of 4 

Theodore Boone: The Kid Lawyer and Abduction by John Grisham- Book Review

When I was younger, I used to love young adult fiction. My favorite series were Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys and Sweet Valley High. There were also a Moses series by Barbara Kimenye that I religiously read. Recently, I found out that John Grisham published a book series for young adults and although I’m no longer in that age bracket, I read everything by Grisham. He writes, I read. It’s that simple.


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The Kid Lawyer
The Kid Lawyer by John Grisham is the first of five books under the Theodore Boone series published for young adults. It’s about Theodore Boone who is a thirteen year old interested in becoming a lawyer or a great judge. Theo’s parents are also lawyers.His mum, Marcela is a divorce lawyer and his dad, Woods is an insurance lawyer. Theo makes it very clear that he would never venture in anything other than criminal law because he loves the courtroom drama. Although Theo is only thirteen years old, he knows everything about law and spends a lot of time in the courthouse. He knows every lawyer, judge and courtroom clerk. He also gives legal advice to his classmates and sometimes to the staff at his school too.
Once a murder trial begins at the courthouse, Theo organizes for his class to watch the first day of trial and keeps going back to the courthouse to catch the drama However, things take a drastic turn when Theo gets involved in the trial. He comes across a key witness who has critical information about the murder. Theo is then forced to get involved and try to convince the witness to come forward.

“Ms Finney shared an office on the third floor with several other court reporters. Their software system was called Veritas. Theo had hacked into it before when he had been curious about something that happened in court. It was not a secure system because the information was available in open court. Anyone could walk into the courtroom and watch the trial. Anyone, of course, who was not confined by the rigors of middle school.”
John Grisham, Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer

On the other hand, Theo’s best friend, April is caught up in a custody battle between her parents. Theo tries to help April with her legal issues by explaining things to her and offering her some much needed comfort.
Young readers (and adults that are young at heart) will absolutely love this book. The Kid Lawyer is written in simple language and has a good, easy flow. It is also action packed and readers will be intrigued by Theo’s antiques and also the twists and turns of the trial. The books ends in such a way that readers will be compelled to get the next book in the series to find out how the trial goes.

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The Abduction
The Abduction is the second book by John Grisham under the Theodore Boone series. The protagonist once again is Theo who is back again to solve another mystery. This time, Theo’s friend, April is abducted in the middle of the night. Everyone is worried about April and some fear that she might be dead. The police also do not seem to be making much progress in their investigation. Theo decided to get involved and find April by conducting his own search with the help of some of his friends.
Like the first book, The Abduction is well paced and has enough suspense to keep readers turning the pages.

“My friend, our classmate, has been snatched by an escaped criminal who was sent to prison because he’s a kidnapper. It’s not like this happens every day around here. We should’ve been out there on the streets helping with the manhunt, but no, we were stuck in school where all we did was talk about searching for April.” “Nonsense. Leave the manhunt to the professionals, Theo. We have a fine police force in this city.” “Well, they haven’t found her yet. Maybe they need some help.” “Help from whom?” Theo cleared his throat and clenched his jaw. He stared straight at his father, and got ready to tell the truth. He’d been taught to confront the truth head-on, hold nothing back,”
John Grisham, Theodore Boone: The Abduction

I recommend this book to the younger readers (there is no age limit to this). The Abduction is a simple yet thrilling book which is quite a page turner. I look forward to reading the remaining three books (The Accused, The Activist and The Fugitive). I can’t wait to follow Theodore Boone in his next adventure.

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Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham

I did my first semester exams sometime in mid December last year. It was a crazy time of late night studying, long but helpful group discussions and three hours spent mulling over each paper trying to convince the lecturers to at least give me a pass. It was a stressful time and so I decided to take breaks from studying by doing some light reading. The first book that I read was Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham. The second one was Never Seduce a Sheikh by Jackie Ashenden. Both books kept me from losing my sanity.

I love all books by John Grisham and have read all but the Gray Mountain. Grisham’s latest book, Rogue Lawyer, is about Sebastian Rudd, a street lawyer. Rudd is the kind of lawyer that law enforcement officers hate and all criminals definitely want to hire. He takes all kinds of cases especially the most controversial ones and uses courtroom tactics that make each case quite exhilarating.
Sebastian Rudd is not your usual lawyer; for starters, his office is in a mobile bulletproof van. In the course of his career, Rudd has made all kinds of enemies from the police, gang members and even other lawyers. He is forced to take extra security measures like carrying a gun and having his bodyguard with him at all times. Rudd likes his liquor and also has an interest in underground cage fights.

Rogue Lawyer
Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham has a good, easy flow. It’s quite thrilling right from the start when Rudd takes a controversial case that seems pretty much open and shut. Everyone appears to have made up their mind about his client long before the trial begun. It’s not a case that any other lawyer wants to take but that is what makes it enthralling to Rudd.
Unlike other books by John Grisham, Rogue Lawyer focuses on different cases although Rudd plays a part in each. For instance, there is a case about a home invasion gone wrong, an inmate on death row and a serial killer. All the different cases are entwined. In one instance; Rudd invests in a cage fighter, later the fighter kills a referee and ends up becoming Rudd’s client.

Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham will keep you at the edge of your seat. It is suspenseful and entertaining. I remember getting to the last pages and slowing down, trying to savor each moment and make the story last longer. It is amazing that even after so many years; John Grisham still remains one of the best fiction writers of all time.


Other books by Grisham worth checking out:


You can find my reviews of ‘The Confession’ and ‘Sycamore Row’ here:https://ahavenforbooklovers.wordpress.com/2015/02/10/the-confession-by-john-grisham/





The Confession by John Grisham

A Book Review


The Confession’ by John Grisham is one of the best books that I have read by this author. Unlike ‘Sycamore Row’ reviewed here https://ahavenforbooklovers.wordpress.com/2015/01/19/the-sycamore-row/, I did not struggle getting through this one. The story was quite fast paced and very moving that it was hard to put the book down.

In this story, there is an innocent man in jail who is about to face execution. Unfortunately, his lawyers have run out of all possible appeals to get him out of jail as the hour of his execution draws nearer. This man is Donte Drumm, accused of the kidnap, rape and murder of Nicole Yarber. On the other hand, there is Travis Boyette who gets to watch in disbelief as the state convicts and sentences to death an innocent man for a crime that he is the one who committed. At first, he is content with letting Donte pay for his crimes.

The plot is brilliant and the story moves quite fast. There is excitement, suspense and tension as a reader is pulled into the story joining in the race against time to see the fate of Donte Drumm. As evidence piles up proving that he is innocent, there are new twists with every move that his lawyers tries to get him freed. It gets to a point when things are set into motion and you hold your breath waiting for Donte to get out of jail but then, a new twist comes in. With every new twist, the clock ticks louder.

There is a lot that is going on behind the scenes. For instance, one of the main themes that come up is race. Drumm is a black kid convicted of killing a while girl in a small town racially divided. There is also a minor theme of religion and faith that adds to the plot of the story.One of the main characters is Rev. Keith Schoeder who gets thrust into the middle of the unfolding drama and joins the race towards saving Drummm. The reaction of the church to Rev. Keith’s involvement throws his life into havoc and he finds himself in another different type of struggle.The Issue of death penalty is another aspect that draws mixed emotions from readers. All these aspects make ‘The Confession’ by John Grisham a very interesting read.

I have read so many books by John Grisham. I remember reading ‘The Client’ while still in my teens and falling in love with Grisham’s work. I must admit though, ‘The Confession’ is my favorite book by Grisham. It made gave me different feelings, For instance, the adrenaline and tension throughout the story waiting to find out whether the execution will be stopped. There were moments of joy every time a new lead or ‘breakthrough’ for Drumm came giving me hope that justice will be served and there were tears when dead ends were hit. This made the book every engaging and I truly enjoyed it. I also love the fact that the story starts immediately with drama that grips you and gets you wanting to know what happens next.

I have heard that there readers who rate the book poorly due to the ending but this is definitely not a fairy tale so do not expect a ‘happy ever after’ for everyone. I know there people who loathe anything to do with the death penalty but this is one book that you should read with an open mind. It is a wonderful story, the characters are well developed in a manner that will draw you into their lives and you will share in their pain and joy, there are twists that will keep you getting and suspense is well developed to keep you glued to the book up to the last page. In addition, Grisham will have you questioning your own beliefs. For instance, on the death penalty. I kept wondering if it is wrong due to the fact that an innocent man was facing death. Would i have felt differently if it was Travis facing death penalty? After all, he did brutally rape and murder an innocent girl. So really, is the death penalty sometimes justified? Grisham really will get you thinking about different issues.

If you enjoy legal drama and are interested in a great fast paced story, then this is definitely the book for you. I highly recommended ‘ The Confession’ by John Grisham and i do hope that you will enjoy the book as much as i did.

Other Books by John Grisham touching on deathrow and death penalty are ‘The Chamber’ which also has a theme of race and ‘ The Innocent Man’ which is based on true events.