Tag Archives: San Francisco

Book Review – The Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster

The Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster book coverThe Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster by Scott Wilbanks

Annabelle Aster is unconventional. She prefers to wear vintage Victorian clothes in 1995 San Francisco and seems to just accept her situation when an 1890s Kansas wheat field appears in her backyard. Elsbeth Grundy, on the other hand, is somewhat put out by the purple and gold Victorian house that suddenly appears on her land but after striking up a correspondence with Annie through letters sent to a mysterious brass mailbox, Elsbeth comes to enjoy Annie’s friendship. Together Elsbeth and Annie try to unravel the mystery of their unique situation and in the process discover a murder that they must try to stop. Scott Wilbanks’ time travel story shares a similar vibe as The Time Traveler’s Wife. However, it also has its own particular tone and plot elements. I enjoyed Annie & Elsbeth’s interesting story and how the time travel wove through the story. There was a side plot involving Annie’s best friend that was pretty good on its own but felt somewhat out of place within the larger narrative. But, overall, this novel was above average.

*Disclosure: I was provided a free copy of this novel with a request for an honest review.*

52 Books in 52 Weeks – Week #26

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour BookstoreMr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

Total Reading Time: 3.75 hours

Review: This story was a modern day mystery with a classic sensibility. It seamlessly combined Google and super-computing with code-breaking and an ancient secret society complete with underground lair & black robes. I found myself enjoying the intersection of technology and old world knowledge and the ending was surprisingly profound and heart-warming. Overall, an utterly creative jaunt and a new take on one of my favorite topics: the wonderful world of books.