Welcome to Books and Polka Dots. I document my life through books and then share it with you.


Rapid Reviews

Rapid Reviews

How Rapid Reviews will work. I will give you my thoughts on the book in a few sentences along with a star rating. This should give you a pretty good idea of what I thought. If you would like to hear more of what I thought, just send me an email and I would love to chat with you about it!



Lily and the Octopus

4.5 Stars – If you have ever had a pet, you will be able to relate to Lily and the Octopus. It tells the story of Ted and his beloved dog Lily. Throughout the entire book, Lily has a voice and the story is told as though she is talking like a human. It is that dream most people have of knowing exactly what their pet is thinking. The premise of the story is that Lily has a tumor on her head (which Ted calls an octopus because he can’t bear the thought of it being a tumor) and does not have much time to live. The story is whimsical; funny at times, filled with so much heart but also saddens you as you feel what Ted is going through. I would highly recommend this but get ready for some tears.

You Will Know Me

3 Stars – I wanted to like this book so much but it fell flat for me. The story follows Devon, who is about to become an elite gymnast and her family. It asks the question of “How far will you go to achieve a dream?”. Without giving too much of the plot away, one of the gymnastics coaches is found dead in an apparent hit and run – and at first the main suspect is another coach, his girlfriend. However, as the story goes on you start to find out that Devon may have had something to do with it. For me, the story felt completely unrealistic and not in a good way – plus I didn’t connect with any of the characters. I was more engrossed by her gymnastics training than the mysterious death everyone was trying to figure out. It wasn’t for me.

The Hopefuls

4.25 Stars– I lived in Washington DC for a brief period of time when I was trying to figure out if a life in politics was for me (it wasn’t…) so I couldn’t wait to dive into this novel. It revolves mainly around one couple – husband Matt who dreams of a career in politics and his wife Beth who leaves her job at a magazine to follow him to DC. The entire story takes place over a series of years and covers topics such as life in DC, the world of politics, what ambition can cause etc. That is the part that spoke to the most to me – the ambition. Throughout the story you see what ambition and drive can do to a person, a marriage, a family and friendships. Some of it is good and some of it is bad. It all felt so real to me and I could relate to some of the circumstances. Plus, I loved reading about DC nuances! Loved this one.

Dear Mr. You

3 Stars– Sometimes I read a book that has received rather high praise and wonder if I missed something. That is how I felt about this book. It is a memoir written in a really interesting style (that is what drew me in). It is written in letters to various men throughout the author’s life. All of the stories are from a moment in her life she wanted to share. I found that the stories did not follow any logical path and none of them correlated to each other. Due to this, I had a hard time following the arc of her life. Also, many of the stories were rather boring and I didn’t find a reason as to why she included them. I was looking for the moral at the end of each letter – something she has learned or realized now looking back… but I got very little of that. I appreciated the concept of the book but felt the delivery lacked for me.

The Singles Game

4.5 Stars– I know nothing about tennis and could probably do without sports but I loved reading this novel. It centers around Charlie who is a tennis pro and suffers a major injury. After she recovers, she decides to completely change her image – no more sweet girl… she is now a warrior princess. The change in attitude and appearance works for her and she becomes a force to be reckoned with on the court. As with most stories like this, there are ups and downs, family elements, love interests etc. which really adds to the reality of the story. The main draw for me was reading about the life a professional athlete. I loved reading about the traveling and the training schedule and the toll that takes on a person’s life. One of my favorite summer reads!

Have you read any of these? I'd love to know what you think!

The One That Got Away - Book Review

The One That Got Away - Book Review