London From My Windows by Mary Carter
Description: Ava Wilder's home in small-town Iowa is her sanctuary. A talented sketch artist with severe agoraphobia, Ava spends her days drawing a far more adventurous life than her invisible disability allows. Until she receives a package from London, explaining that she has inherited her Aunt Beverly's entire estate - on condtion that she lives in Bev's West End flat for a year. (from Goodreads)
My Impression: I don't DNF a book very often and the reasons I had for DNFing weren't the normal variety. I didn't absolutely hate it, I didn't intensely dislike a character, and the writing and pacing were actually quite good. My problem, I think, was what I wanted from this particular book and what I actually got. I wanted to love this one. And I tried - I really tried. The story starts off with a bang with Ava as a happy little girl who suddenly suffers a dramatic loss and we see her spiral into agoraphobia start. After that I kind of lost connection with the story. To be honest, Ava is hard to like and with this kind of character driven fiction I have to have some connection for the main character. I think her reactions and thoughts were probably realistic for someone who has kept themselves isolated from the outside world since they were 10 and has struggled with severe anxiety but unfortunately for me that didn't make this any more enjoyable. While the move to London seemed like a positive development and I was intrigued by some of the conditions of the apartment the collection of characters borders on the absurd. I would love to see a review from someone who has or knows someone who has struggled with agoraphobia to see how accurately portrayed it is here. As for me I made it to about the 35% mark before I was just done. While I thought the story itself had potential my lack of connection to any of the characters ended up making me put the book down. Rating: DNF (Did Not Finish)
Would I Read More From This Series/Author: Definitely. Even though this book didn't work for me I'm enjoyed the author's writing style and am looking forward to trying another of her books.
Mandy's Father (Lockwood Legacy #4) by Juliette Harper
Oh how I love the Lockwood sisters! It was so nice to have visit them again though I did miss some of their mother's contemporaries who had been such a part of the previous book. This book focuses on the sisters and the ranch again as the treasure hunting heats up, discoveries are made, and it appears the sisters are not quite done with all the drama and danger yet. I felt like in this book we mostly see through Kate's eyes which was a little unexpected since a major subplot involves younger sister Mandy's biological father. This worked for me as Kate is my favorite of the three sisters. There was one even that happened about 75% in that seemed so unnecessarily but by the conclusion it really worked and while it was heartbreaking it made sense that it happened. Overall, I really enjoyed this and I have the rest of the series. This is not a book that will work as a stand alone and since each book is around 150 pages and a quick read at that there's no need too. So far I've really loved this story and these characters and can't wait for September for when the 5th book gets released! Rating: 5 Stars
Would I Read More From This Series/Author: Yes to both! I'm looking forward to continuing this series and trying out some other books from this author as well.