First, Middle, and Last Impressions – March 23, 2022

I love taking a look at a book cover and description and then coming up with my own idea of what the book will be about. Sometimes I’m right, sometimes I’m so wrong it’s almost funny. So I’ve decided to launch myself off of WWW Wednesday, a bookish meme run by Sam@Taking on a World of Words, and write about my first, middle, and last impressions of each book I read.

The first impression is based solely on the cover and description. What do I think it will be about?

The middle impression is kind of a check-in on how the story is going about halfway through.

The last impression is my final thoughts on the book, what I’m left thinking.

I hope you have as much fun with this as I will!


Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li – Fiction, Multicultural

portrait of a thief grace d li

First Impression: I think this will be a fun heist story. I like that the main characters are all Chinese American, just like I am, but I don’t have high hopes as most of the reviews I’ve seen so far seem to indicate this book is just okay.

Middle Impression: So, it’s a little thin in the heist plot, as in it doesn’t seem to be the main focus of the story despite being the primary plot, but I am loving the exploration of the Chinese American experience detailed on the page as each experience is different. The writing is interesting and doesn’t really jive well with a heist story, like it’s painting the story in broad brushstrokes to create a dream-like quality that actually makes me question whether the events really happened, but I like that it leaves a lot to be inferred instead of knocking the reader over the head with every little thing that’s happening. Reading this is actually making me feel like I have a brain, which I really like.

Last Impression: As a heist story, this book left me wanting, but I did enjoy the twist at the end. Overall, this felt more like a story of identity and of being Chinese American, and I really loved that it spoke to me as I was once in their shoes, and sometimes still feel there.


In a Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power – Fantasy

in a garden burning gold rory power

First Impression: Mostly based on the cover, I’m expecting this to be a beautifully rich world and, based on the book description, a complex story of family.

Middle Impression: So far this is interesting, but the story lines feel a little on the simple side and the characters seem to do a ton of thinking and talking instead of doing anything. The world is fascinating, but I feel like I’m grasping at straws to really figure it out. The more I read, the clearer it becomes, so I’m hoping I’ll have pieced everything together by the end.


What about you?

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2 thoughts on “First, Middle, and Last Impressions – March 23, 2022

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