We Were Dreamers by Simu Liu
May 17, 2022, by William Morrow
Review by Melinda
I’m a big fan of celebrity memoirs, particularly when listening to an audiobook with the celebrity narrating themselves. It always lends more of a personal tone to the book and makes it feel more like the celebrity is just sharing stories with you one-on-one. We Were Dreamers is narrated by Simu Liu and he tells his background as a child of immigrants, and how that shaped his childhood and adulthood.
Liu has an interesting and complex background, especially around his relationship with his parents. This was a huge portion of the book, as his parents had high expectations of him and his future. He talked a lot about not living up to those expectations and how the relationship dynamics changed drastically. I want readers to be aware that this book deals with emotional abuse quite a bit, as well as a bit of physical abuse around that relationship. Simu was extremely open about this, and it was really impressive – and heart-wrenching – to hear him talk about this, and I hope other people see themselves in the book and get some good out of it.
The parts I loved the most about the book was Simu talking about getting into acting. He was so clearly motivated and then passionate about it, that this just shined through. He was very transparent about the types of roles he took in the beginning of his career and then about the bigger roles as well.
The book was filled with humor and charm, but was also balanced with serious subjects and emotion. My only complaint is that I wish he’d closed the loop on his relationship with his parents within the book. He discussed it so openly, and I really wanted to know how things stood now. Beyond that, it was just what I love in a celebrity memoir.
CW: emotional and physical abuse
Ruthless Women by Melanie Blake
Feb 18, 2022
Review by Melinda
Ruthless Women by Melanie Blake was such a throwback that reminded me of Valley of the Dolls or a Jackie Collins novel, and not in a good way. I loved the premise of women trying to save a soap opera and get better ratings, by any means necessary. But everything was incredibly over the top and the characters seemed very one dimensional to me. Every single woman just wanted power and sex, showing off their plastic surgery at every turn, thrusting their breasts in every man’s face they come across. Which, really I wouldn’t have a problem with if it was one character with a reason for that, but *every* character?
I thought I was going to be reading a book with some suspense, but also have fun dramatic relationships being played out. This was listed in the genre ‘Mysteries & Thriller’ and this book just didn’t deliver on the promise at all. I finally DNF around 50% because I couldn’t handle the monotony of the characters bleeding together,
Grade: DNF but D up through 50%