Official Review: Model Marine by Sondra Sykes Meek

Please use this sub-forum to discuss any fiction books or series that do not fit into one of the other categories. If the fiction book fits into one the other categories, please use that category instead.
Forum rules
While in the forum's younger and less active days this used to be the one and only forum for "reviews and discussions about specific books", this is now just the subforum "other fiction" in a more well-organized "reviews and discussions about specific books" section with subforums for each genre. Check it out! :) Remember, the forums in the reviews section (including this forum) are for posting about a single book or series in topic, and the topic title should include the book's title. If you are creating a new topic, please try to post it in one of the other genres rather than posting it here in the "other fiction" section. This is only for books that do not fit in any of the other genre categories we have listed.
Post Reply
User avatar
kandscreeley
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 6404
Joined: 31 Dec 2016, 20:31
2018 Reading Goal: 115
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 93
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 94
Currently Reading: End of the Last Great Kingdom
Bookshelf Size: 235
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kandscreeley.html
Latest Review: The Third Thaw by Karl J. Hanson

Official Review: Model Marine by Sondra Sykes Meek

Post by kandscreeley » 22 Feb 2018, 15:41

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Model Marine" by Sondra Sykes Meek.]
Book Cover
4 out of 4 stars
Share This Review


Emotional. Compelling. Intense. Brilliant. All words I would use to describe Model Marine by Sondra Sykes Meek. Classified as other fiction, I highly recommend this novel for anyone who enjoys a spellbinding read.

Molly Monroe enjoys acting on stage; her mother has had her in beauty pageants since she was a toddler. She and her best friend Beth are planning on attending the North Carolina School of the Arts together. Molly surprises everyone the summer after graduation, though, when she enters the Marine Corps.

Her mother is furious and refuses to talk to her. But life in the military is good for Molly. Stationed in Afghanistan as a Combat Camera Marine, she takes photographs and writes articles for publication. She only wishes that she would be allowed outside the wire once in a while.

Molly's story is told in flashes much as the pictures she takes with her camera. The author skillfully weaves the plot together going backward and forward in time at will. Rather than be confusing, this adds a hint of mystery as the reader pieces together what has happened. I was so enthralled with the glimpses of information I was getting that I couldn't stop reading until I assembled the whole picture. Ms. Meek does so well at letting the reader know who is speaking and giving clues about the time frame that at no point did I get lost.

I also appreciated the author's handling of military terms; as a civilian I often get bogged down by abbreviations, acronyms and slang. I didn't feel that way in Model Marine. The occasional unfamiliar term is mentioned, but the author leaves enough clues to understand what's happening without googling every other word. Thus, my focus was entirely on the story instead of on simply trying to figure out what was being said.

If you are at all familiar with my past reviews, you may know that I'm a stickler when it comes to editing. Nothing is worse than a great story that's riddled with errors as this takes away from the flow of the book. I'm thrilled to say that this book was very well edited. More than that, though, the story is so captivating that I found myself not even looking for errors. For me, that is entirely out of character, but that's how well-written this is.

There is no hesitation or uncertainty in my rating of this book. I rate Model Marine a solid 4 out of 4 stars. I honestly can't think of anyone who wouldn't enjoy this book other than perhaps those who suffer from PTSD (as it might bring back unpleasant memories.) To end my review, I'd like to leave you with one of my favorite quotes from the book. It takes place when four female Marines (including Molly) are discussing their friendship.
We're like gumbo, ya know? A unique dish, enriched by our diverse cultural influences, served together, to produce a most satisfying result.
******
Model Marine
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon

Like kandscreeley's review? Post a comment saying so!
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

User avatar
Vickie Noel
Posts: 1306
Joined: 30 Jun 2017, 04:46
2018 Reading Goal: 30
2017 Reading Goal: 20
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 53
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 295
Favorite Book: <a href="http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/shelve ... 86063">Are you afraid of the dark</a>
Currently Reading: The Cartel Crusher
Bookshelf Size: 397
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-vickie-noel.html
Latest Review: The Dark River Secret by Gayle Siebert
Reading Device: B01C9JZEBO

Post by Vickie Noel » 23 Feb 2018, 07:38

Quick, sign me up! The sudden switch from the 'dolls kingdom' to the 'fast and furious' world of the military would be something of a head-spinner; they're so far apart. I'm very curious to know what was going on in Molly's head when she made that decision. So, I'm definitely in! Bonus points for being error-spotless too. Thanks for this engaging review, kandscreeley, with just enough juice to whet my appetite into reading the book.
Stop waiting for what you WANT, start working with what you HAVE. --- Seth Cain
Never be bullied into questioning your own credibility. --- Vickie Noel

User avatar
kandscreeley
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 6404
Joined: 31 Dec 2016, 20:31
2018 Reading Goal: 115
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 93
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 94
Currently Reading: End of the Last Great Kingdom
Bookshelf Size: 235
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kandscreeley.html
Latest Review: The Third Thaw by Karl J. Hanson

Post by kandscreeley » 23 Feb 2018, 08:48

Vickie Noel wrote:
23 Feb 2018, 07:38
Quick, sign me up! The sudden switch from the 'dolls kingdom' to the 'fast and furious' world of the military would be something of a head-spinner; they're so far apart. I'm very curious to know what was going on in Molly's head when she made that decision. So, I'm definitely in! Bonus points for being error-spotless too. Thanks for this engaging review, kandscreeley, with just enough juice to whet my appetite into reading the book.
Thanks for your comments! It really is worth a read. I felt unworthy just to write the review of such a wonderful book!
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

Rosemary Okoko
Posts: 578
Joined: 31 May 2017, 05:12
2018 Reading Goal: 12
2017 Reading Goal: 6
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 91
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 233
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 65
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-rosemary-okoko.html
Latest Review: The Scouts of St. Michael by Dan Morales

Post by Rosemary Okoko » 23 Feb 2018, 11:18

Good to know that you enjoyed reading this book. I'm not into military but the quote makes me think otherwise. Sounds interesting.

User avatar
kandscreeley
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 6404
Joined: 31 Dec 2016, 20:31
2018 Reading Goal: 115
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 93
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 94
Currently Reading: End of the Last Great Kingdom
Bookshelf Size: 235
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kandscreeley.html
Latest Review: The Third Thaw by Karl J. Hanson

Post by kandscreeley » 23 Feb 2018, 12:07

Rosemary Okoko wrote:
23 Feb 2018, 11:18
Good to know that you enjoyed reading this book. I'm not into military but the quote makes me think otherwise. Sounds interesting.
It's more human interest than military. I'd recommend it even if you aren't normally a military fan.
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

User avatar
polar_palm_tree
Posts: 15
Joined: 22 Feb 2018, 00:20
2018 Reading Goal: 10
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 360
Favorite Book: The Reel Sisters
Currently Reading: Percy Jackson's Greek Gods
Bookshelf Size: 49
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-polar-palm-tree.html
Latest Review: Diary of a Snoopy Cat by R.F. Kristi

Post by polar_palm_tree » 23 Feb 2018, 14:28

I really enjoyed reading your review. I have not read Model Marine, but after reading your review, I am heading over to Amazon to pick up a copy. Thanks!

User avatar
Arrigo_Lupori
Posts: 200
Joined: 19 Jan 2018, 07:14
2018 Reading Goal: 24
Favorite Author: Haruki Murakami
Currently Reading: A Short History of Nearly Everything
Bookshelf Size: 15
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-arrigo-lupori.html
Latest Review: Island Games by Caleb J. Boyer
Reading Device: B00I15SB16
fav_author_id: 2566

Post by Arrigo_Lupori » 23 Feb 2018, 15:06

Seems to be worth a read. I love stories related to photography.
"The abstract sensation of living a lifestyle that hasn't been fully understood."
- The epitome of taste in living disgrace.

User avatar
kandscreeley
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 6404
Joined: 31 Dec 2016, 20:31
2018 Reading Goal: 115
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 93
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 94
Currently Reading: End of the Last Great Kingdom
Bookshelf Size: 235
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kandscreeley.html
Latest Review: The Third Thaw by Karl J. Hanson

Post by kandscreeley » 23 Feb 2018, 15:30

It's a good one for sure! Thanks for commenting.
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

User avatar
Izesicle
Posts: 748
Joined: 25 Jun 2017, 00:16
2018 Reading Goal: 48
2017 Reading Goal: 20
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 20
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 45
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 140
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-izesicle.html
Latest Review: With Malice Aforethought by Thonie Hevron
Reading Device: B00JG8GOWU

Post by Izesicle » 23 Feb 2018, 16:25

Great cover and your review makes the book even more intriguing. I want to piece together the pieces too!

Thanks for stopping by my review.

User avatar
Rusty_Nails
Posts: 2
Joined: 12 Oct 2017, 05:08
Currently Reading: The Nobel Prize
Bookshelf Size: 0

Post by Rusty_Nails » 23 Feb 2018, 17:25

It's about passion rather than just wanting to be a military..good book to read for sure..

User avatar
CatInTheHat
Bookshelves Moderator
Posts: 2138
Joined: 31 May 2016, 11:53
2018 Reading Goal: 52
2017 Reading Goal: 52
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 92
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 98
Favorite Book: Cry the Beloved Country
Currently Reading: Rogue Captain
Bookshelf Size: 469
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-catinthehat.html
Latest Review: Lunch Money by Roger M. Cullen
Reading Device: B00JG8GOWU
Publishing Contest Votes: 0

Post by CatInTheHat » 23 Feb 2018, 18:04

This sounds like it might be an inspirational choice for high school girls, who are getting ready to make big choices. There are many ways this could be a benefit to them, from inspiration to seeing how it's okay to make decisions based on our desires, rather than our family's desires.
Life without a good book is something the CatInTheHat cannot imagine.


Grateful to get the opportunity to explore new books with those in the OBC.

User avatar
kandscreeley
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 6404
Joined: 31 Dec 2016, 20:31
2018 Reading Goal: 115
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 93
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 94
Currently Reading: End of the Last Great Kingdom
Bookshelf Size: 235
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kandscreeley.html
Latest Review: The Third Thaw by Karl J. Hanson

Post by kandscreeley » 23 Feb 2018, 18:46

CatInTheHat wrote:
23 Feb 2018, 18:04
This sounds like it might be an inspirational choice for high school girls, who are getting ready to make big choices. There are many ways this could be a benefit to them, from inspiration to seeing how it's okay to make decisions based on our desires, rather than our family's desires.
Absolutely. There's a wide audience here. Thanks.
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

User avatar
CommMayo
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 1229
Joined: 22 Oct 2017, 14:19
2018 Reading Goal: 30
2017 Reading Goal: 6
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 110
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 183
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 48
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-commmayo.html
Latest Review: Sex, Murder, Betrayal by Frederick Bruce
Reading Device: B00G2Y4WNY

Post by CommMayo » 24 Feb 2018, 14:52

I'm really glad that this book was so enjoyable. I almost selected it to review, but it was snatched up before I got my last review done! I love the idea of seeing the Marines from a woman's point of view and I'm so very happy that she seemed to have done this book justice.

User avatar
Jkhorner
Posts: 236
Joined: 09 Feb 2018, 08:32
2018 Reading Goal: 30
2017 Reading Goal: 0
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 90
Currently Reading: The Sword Swallower and a Chico Kid
Bookshelf Size: 422
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-jkhorner.html
Latest Review: The Stipulations of the New Covenant by Ralph E. Bass, Jr.

Post by Jkhorner » 24 Feb 2018, 17:06

You've hit on the three things I always want to know before starting a book: will the settings confuse me? will I have to google a bunch of unfamiliar terms? and did the editor do a good job? I'd love to dive into this book and learn Molly's story!

User avatar
kandscreeley
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 6404
Joined: 31 Dec 2016, 20:31
2018 Reading Goal: 115
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 93
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 94
Currently Reading: End of the Last Great Kingdom
Bookshelf Size: 235
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kandscreeley.html
Latest Review: The Third Thaw by Karl J. Hanson

Post by kandscreeley » 24 Feb 2018, 17:24

CommMayo wrote:
24 Feb 2018, 14:52
I'm really glad that this book was so enjoyable. I almost selected it to review, but it was snatched up before I got my last review done! I love the idea of seeing the Marines from a woman's point of view and I'm so very happy that she seemed to have done this book justice.
Me too. The author is a retired marine so I think that helped make the book realistic! Thanks for the comment.
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

Post Reply

Return to “Other Fiction Forum”