Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

July 2014 Book Log

Mother, Mother – Koren Zailckas

The Vactioners – Emma Straub

The Rosie Project – Graeme Simsion

The Dark Road to Mercy – Wiley Cash

The Hour I First Believed – Wally Lamb

Mother, Mother was okay.  It was an easy, quick read, but predictable.  At times I wanted to slap some of the characters for their stupidity.  Not a memorable book.

The Vacationers…I thought it would be entertaining since I had seen it mentioned in a couple of different places as a book to read this summer, but alas, I was not impressed.  I guess it was a book to read this summer because the content was light, but it didn’t appeal to me.

The Rosie Project!!! Yeah!  Finally a book that I wanted to finish!  I really enjoyed reading the book.  The book was written well and made me think about how people relate to the world and how we judge other people.  I love books that can make you look outside of yourself and this book did that.

I read The Dark Road to Mercy since my husband read it and thought I would like it, but then after the fact we both agreed that out of 5 stars that it was just a 3.  I think there could have been more depth to the characters and if that was the case it would have bumped the book up to a 4.

I always enjoy reading Wally Lamb’s books; The Hour I First Believed is no exception.  I was amazed at how Lamb tied the whole book together.  I would start reading a chapter and wonder how it pertained to the book and then a few chapters later there would be a reference from that chapter and then I would get it.  He tied in so many different historical events into one book and somehow made it work.


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The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot

Beautiful Day – Elin Hilderbrand

Whistling Past the Graveyard – Susan Crandall

The Descendants – Kaui Hart Hemmings

The Invention of Wings – Sue Monk Kidd

Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery – Robert Koiker

How to Bake a Perfect Life – Barbara O’Neal

The Possibilities – Kaui Hart Hemmings

A little behind on my book postings.  I will try to remember what I can from reading these books, but none of them were the greatest.  The only one that I might recommend would be Whistling Past the Graveyard.

I guess I am just not so much into non-fiction books since The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and Lost Girls didn’t hold my attention.  I probably should have not read Lost Girls the moment I read the title and saw that it was unsolved.

I was disappointed with the Invention of Wings because I really liked her other book The Secret Life of Bees so my expectations were high.  Beautiful Day was also not my cup of tea.

How to Bake a Perfect life was a Target Book Club selection from who know when.  I usually really like the Target Club books, but this one was kind of blah.  It was a quick, easy read.  I read it in a matter of three days, two of them being at the beach with distractions.  So, with having so many distractions this was a good book to read since it didn’t require a lot of brain work.

The Possibilities has been mentioned in a few different places as must read book of the summer.  I liked this book better than The Descendants, but found the beginning predictable.  I did like the humor in her writing and loved the grandfather in the story.  Wasn’t the absolute best book, but was entertaining.

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March 2014 Book Log

The Age of Miracles – Karen Thompson Walker

Into the Darkest Corner – Elizabeth Haynes

The Secret Life of Bees – Sue Monk Kid

Wonder – R.J. Palacio

The Glass Castle – Jeannette Walls

The Age of Miracles has been sitting on our bookshelf for over a year.  I had no other books to read so I figured I would pick it up and give it a try.  The storyline was interesting with the slowing of the earth’s rotation, but I think the author could have done a better job with the details and how the characters felt and the pandemonium that occurred.

I have no idea where I saw the book Into the Darkest Corner to add to my list, but I am glad I did.  It was a nice departure from what I have been reading.  A thriller that kept me entertained.

I am way behind in my reading of The Secret Life of Bees, but I did love it.  I love the idea of lots of woman working together and

providing love for a little girl.

Wonder was a quick, easy read that I read in two days.  I loved the message of the book and passed the book on to my 9-year old daughter to read.  I hope she grasps the message and treats all people with kindness.

I usually do not like biographies, but I really enjoyed reading The Glass Castle.  The author’s experiences are character building and she did a great job of keeping her story interesting.

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February 2014 Book Log

Gathering Blue – Lois Lowry

Messenger – Lois Lowry

The Late, Lamented Molly Marx – Sally Koslow

Insurgent – Veronica Roth

The Silver Linings Playbook – Matthew Quick

Gathering Blue is apparently the second to the quartet of The Giver series.  I didn’t think the two books really went together, but it was interesting none the less.  I already have the third book so maybe that will tie the books together.

Messenger did tie the Giver series together with the characters from both books meeting in this book.  Messenger made me understand the characters more, but I hated the ending.  Not sure if I will end up reading the last book of the quartet because I am not sure if it would be worth reading.  I am glad that I read Messenger though.

I did enjoy The Late, Lamented Molly Marx.  I wouldn’t say I would rate it as a book that someone should read, but I thought that Kolslow’s writing was whitty and fun.

Oh Insurgent, how I wish I would have read you right after Divergent.  I think I would have enjoyed this book better if I had not waited inbetween the two books.  I was at the mercy of the library with their insanely long wait list though.  I had a hard time getting into the book at first because I was overwhelmed by the number of characters.  I am not sure if I caught up with all the characters until about the last chapter.

I didn’t necessarily intend on reading The Silver Linings Playbook, but it was on my husband’s list and needed something to read and we ended up reading it at the same time.  It was kind of a slow book and predictable.  I know the movie got great reviews, but I imagine it would be much of the same.

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January 2014 Book Log

Divergent – Veronica Roth

Eleanor and Park – Rainbow Rowell

Calling Me Home – Julie Kilber

The Playdate – Louise Millar

The Giver – Lois Lowry

Necessary Lies – Diane Chamberlain

Thought I would start the New Year with a fresh new series and try to rekindle my youth.  Divergent really kept my attention.  The differences between the “factions” are interesting.  The book makes you think outside of your comfort zone, which I appreciate.  Looking forward to the next one in the series, but have a couple other books lined up.  Hopefully the wait in between the two will be worth it.

Apparently I am feeling very young…Eleanor and Park is another young adult book.  It was cute.  I think I probably would have liked it more if I was 16.  It could have taught me some empathy for other people.  It is nice to think that one person can mean and help another person so much.

Calling Me Home was an appropriate book to read in January with MLK day.  It was a sweet, forbidden love story.  I would just say it is okay though since I feel like I have read similar stories before.

The Playdate has been on my “to read” list for a while.  It was a kindle deal book so I splurged and actually bought a book.  It was just okay.  Some of the story line was far-fetched.

The Giver was interesting.  I think most interesting was that it was written in the 90’s, but had a feeling of Pretties or Divergent.  I wasn’t crazy about the ending because I wanted to know more, but maybe it is a good thing to be left wanting more.

Necessary Lies is another book by Diane Chamberlain.  I haven’t read one in a while and this was her latest.  It didn’t have quite the same feel as her other books, but I really loved reading it.  I welcomed the departure from her usual writing and loved the characters.

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2013 Books Worth Reading

I read 48 books last year, down from my previous year (at the rate I am going in 10 years I will be reading zero books in a year).  Anyway, the books I would recommend of the 48 I read are (in no particular order):

Gap Creek – Robert Morgan

Gap Creek - April

Dark Places – Gillian Flynn

Dark Places - April

The Escape Artist – Diane Chamberlain

June - The Escape Artist

Secret Lives – Diane Chamberlain

Secret Lives

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close – Jonathan Safran Foer

July - Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Eating Animals – Jonathan Safran Foer

July - Eating Animals

Orphan Train – Christina Baker Kline

August - Orphan Train

Where’d You Go, Bernadette – Maria Semple

August - Where'd You Go Bernadette

Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend – Matthew Dicks

September - Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend

Me Before You – Jojo Moyes

September - Me Before You

The Kitchen House – Kathleen Grissom

September - The Kitchen House

Reconstructing Amelia – Kimberly McCreight

Reconstrucing Amelia

Girl in Translation – Jean Kwok

Girl in Translation

We Are Water – Wally Lamb

We are Water

I think the books cover a pretty good range, well except for the fact that there are zero non-fiction books, romance, sci-fi…nevermind…they are strictly fiction books.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!


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December 2013 Book Log

Just What Kind of Mother are You? – Paula Daly

Reconstructing Amelia – Kimberly McCreight

Girl in Translation – Jean Kwok

The Perfect Husband – Lisa Gardner

We Are Water – Wally Lamb

Just What Kind of Mother Are You?  was just okay.  There were parts in the book that were completely unnecessary and didn’t apply to the story line at all (breast reduction, the Aunt that could have had some significance the story, but didn’t).

Reconstructing Ameila got me out of my reading slump!  It kept me interested and wanting to read more.  The plot had twists and turns and was not predictable.

Girl in Translation was another good read.  It was something different and you really rooted for the main character Kimberly.

The Perfect husband was a good suspense book.  It reminded me of an Iris Johansen or Tami Hoag book, which I haven’t read in a while.  Apparently this book is in high demand at the library and could not be renewed so I ended up speed reading the book in just a couple of days.  I would have enjoyed the book more if I could have taken my time.

I tried reading Orange is the New Black, got to page 180 and gave up…life is too short for books you don’t enjoy.  I started reading We Are Water and so glad I made the switch.  It was a fairly long book, but it kept me engaged the entire time.  I liked how Lamb went back and forth between characters for chapters.

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