Very short reviews of books

The original, and surreal, Spaceman of Bohemia is highly recommended. The Mars Room and I am, I am, I am area also among my favorites from April.

Spaceman of Bohemia: Czech astronaut Jakub Procházka leaves his wife behind and heads on a mission to Venus where he befriends a possibly-real, alien spider. (5/5 stars.)

The Mars Room: A bad history with an obsessive strip club visitor leads a young mother to an unfortunate encounter and two life sentences in prison. This is a brutal, yet empathetic look at a life gone sideways. (5/5 stars.) Read my full review.

I am, I am, I am: A remarkable and captivating memoir that recounts author Maggie O’Farrell’s 17 near-death experiences.  (5/5 stars.)

The Immortalists: A family drama that follows the lives of four siblings who, as children, are told by a spiritualist the day they will die. (4/5 stars.)

Gateway to the MoonGateway to the Moon:  Mary Morris’ latest novel combines a coming of age story with historical fiction to explore ideas of identity and how history echoes across time. Set in a remote New Mexico town founded by crypto-Jews fleeing the Spanish inquisition. (4/5 stars.) Read my full review.

Final Girls: The “final girls” are a loose-knit trio of girls who were all lone survivors of mass murder. Now one of them is dead and the other two form a troubled bond in this psychological thriller. (4/5 stars.)

The Stars Are Fire: As Grace Holland reconciles the fact that she is in a loveless marriage, a fire breaks out in rural Maine and her husband disappears, and is assumed dead, while fighting it. Her chance at a new life is severely derailed after her husband returns disfigured. (3/5 stars.)