Everything I Never Told You: A Novel
Lydia is the favored child of the Lee family. Her mom desperately wants her to become a doctor, to pick up her medical career where her mom failed--due to gender constraints and impending motherhood. Her father wants her to be popular, to fit in, as he never could as a Chinese American. But Lydia doesn't want any of this, all of which no longer matters because Lydia dies before the book even begins. No one knows what happens, but it takes the youngest to begin to piece Lydia's final days together.
Told through the eyes of the Lee family and sometimes Lydia, this book really explored the dynamics of parental pressure and the mother-daughter relationship.
It is overall a sad book and not terribly mysterious, but I loved it. It really reached down to a point where I felt a connection with all the characters and truly felt their struggles.
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet)
Orson Scott Card has made some political and social statements that I don't agree with or find potentially hateful, but I figured if I checked out this book from the library, I wouldn't be putting any money toward him. EXCEPT I lost the book somehow, so I ended up having to buy it to replace the library copy. Thwarted by the universe, right? Anyway, I always try to separate the author from the book in cases like this, and I did enjoy the book.
In Ender's world, child geniuses are monitored and plucked from their homes to be trained by the government to fight the endless war of humanity vs. the buggers. The book is split between Ender's time in space, training to be a great solider, and his siblings on earth--who are changing the world in their own way. Although parts of the plot bogged a little bit, it was still, overall, a good read and great message.