Posts Tagged ‘Books’

Book: The Reader by Bernhard Schlink
Pages: 218
Entertainment Rating: 4/5
Snooty Rating: 4/5
Total Rating: 8/10
Books Read Total: 32/50
Pages Read Total: 7066/15,000

A solid story of love, loss, secrets, discovery, horror, and some sort of forgiveness. I found this book very readable and I read it straight through (it even prompted me to spend an extra 20 minutes on the treadmill this morning) but I never quite felt like I got what I was looking for. The plot is great, but I got lost in the execution. I didn’t feel particularly sympathetic or angry or really any sort of emotion, despite the emotionally driven plot, and it seems to me that that’s a fairly significant shortcoming. I wouldn’t say don’t read it, because it is an interesting book, but I can’t quite agree with the LA times when they say that it “ensnares both heart and mind”. Unless maybe my heart is made of stone (which we know is not the case from the emotional gushing that sometimes appears on this blog).


Read Full Post »

Book Sale Booty!

The Warren Fall Fest was a blast as expected, and the best (read: most dangerous) part was that my booth was directly facing the library book sale tent!

I got:
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
Soul Mountain by Gao Xingjian
Blink by Malcolm Gladwell
Thirteen Moons by Charles Frazier
Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
Wicked by Gregory Maguire
I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
the curious incident of the dog in the night-time by Mark Haddon
Malinche and
Swift as Desire both by Laura Esquivel
The Virgin Blue by Tracy Chevalier
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie
Day of the Bees by Thomas Sanchez

And the one I’ve just started reading, The Reader by Bernhard Schlink. I’m really enjoying it, and will let you know what it’s about when I get a bit further into it!

Read Full Post »

Book: Matters of Choice by Noah Gordon
Pages: 448
Entertainment Rating: 3.5/5
Snooty Rating: 2/5
Total Rating: 5.5/10
Books Read Total: 29/50
Pages Read Total: 5671/15,000

–Insert summary here–(sorry)

Before anyone starts judging me, I read this book at the beach. I’ve been on vacation for the past few days (still am, as a matter of fact!) and at my mom’s suggestion I’m reading some more entertaining, beachy reads this week. I’ve got Western lit, art history, anthropology, Spanish and contemporary Buddhism courses starting in almost a week, so it’s safe to say this is some of the last breezy reading I’ll be doing.

All that said, this wasn’t laborious to read. I didn’t realize that it was the third part of a trilogy until just now when I went searching for a cover shot. Apparently the first two novels are of a much higher caliber, so don’t tell any Gordon fans that I picked it up thinking it would be some cheesy romance (which it is, a bit, in parts.) Anyhow, I wouldn’t go out of my way to recommend it, but I wouldn’t scream “Don’t do it!” if someone took it out of the Library or found it left behind at their grandmother’s house.

Now, I’m going to admit that the book I’m reading now is one of Hamilton’s Anita Blake vampire books. You have every right to ridicule me but I’m telling you her books are hard to ignore. I can never decide if I’m weirded out enough to put the book down. On a similar note, I was in the bookstore the other day and since when is V.C. Andrews considered kid lit! I wouldn’t touch another one of her books with a ten foot pole, let alone give it to a kid!!

Read Full Post »

Book: The Winter of Our Discontent by John Steinbeck
Pages: 281
Entertainment Rating: 4.5/5
Snooty Rating: 4/5
Total Rating: 8.5/10
Books Read Total: 28/50
Pages Read Total: 5223/15,000

I feel that since it has been such a long time since my last book I owe it to myself to really dig deep into this one. Somehow I can’t do that, despite my adoration of Steinbeck and Ethan, his lovable protagonist. Perhaps the reason I find myself refusing to delve into this story more is because I understand that what Ethan ends up doing is bad, and yet I love him nonetheless. His quick wit and charming banter held my attention far longer than the underlying commentary, though that is what originally drew me to the book (besides my obvious love of Steinbeck, of course.)
Regardless of how much I examine this book I feel there is no denying that this is Steinbeck through and through. Rich descriptions and straightforward storytelling.

Read Full Post »

Book: Knitting with Balls by Michael del Vecchio
Pages: 150
Entertainment Rating: 3/5
Snooty Rating: 4/5
Total Rating: 7/10
Books Read Total: 27/50
Pages Read Total: 4942/15,000

I got this book from the library in hopes of finding something to knit for my brother for Christmas (how forward thinking of me, right?) This book is wonderfully thorough! Much like the Stitch ‘n Bitch books this one has all the information you need from start to finish, but written in “man” language. Occasionally the wording is a little bit cheesy and over-the-top but it’s mostly endearing. I especially enjoyed the breakdown of different yarn weights, the tips and tricks (I never thought to use a card or post-it to mark my place in a chart!), the how to knit continental or english, and the bit in the back about altering patterns. The actual projects didn’t do much for me, but I did check them out, and they offer a great range from basic onward and cover a variety of techniques. This book would make a great gift to anyone (male or female) who’s looking to start knitting more. It’s also a good source for quick guy-gifts (unless that guy is my brother!)

Read Full Post »

Book: Melting Stones by Tamora Pierce
Pages: Audiobook
Entertainment Rating: 4.5/5
Snooty Rating: 3/5
Total Rating: 7.5/10
Books Read Total: 26/50
Pages Read Total: 4792/15,000

I actually finished this book a couple weeks ago, but somehow never got around to writing about it. A part of a series called The Circle Opens, I found this book as enjoyable as I found the preceding books so many years ago. Interestingly, this book was released in audio before it was printed. The actors did a lovely job, and the story is quite entertaining, if a bit over the top at times. I enjoyed this book, but I think much of my enjoyment was nostalgic. These are great YA books, but do not quite take that step beyond. Fun and quirky!

Read Full Post »

Book: The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman
Pages: Audiobook
Entertainment Rating: 5/5
Snooty Rating: 5/5
Total Rating: 10/10
Books Read Total: 24/50
Pages Read Total: 4220/15,000

Book: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown
Pages: 572
Entertainment Rating: 5/5
Snooty Rating: 2.5/5
Total Rating: 7.5/10
Books Read Total: 25/50
Pages Read Total: 4792/15,000

Pullman is fabulous. Each time I experience his storytelling I think about it for days afterwards. While listening to this audiobook (narrated by Pullman himself) I was also reading Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons and couldn’t help but draw parallels between the two. While I recognize that Brown and Pullman play in two different arenas I think that in terms of depth of character and thought-provoking plots Pullman definitely has the upper hand. While he does have the advantage of a trilogy’s worth of pages to build his story I feel he has been true to those pages and made use of each of them. He’s neat. He cleans up after himself, if you know what I mean. While Brown (miserably, albeit with some witty bits) shoves a weak love subplot in to attempt to add some depth to his action packed adventure, Pullman captures the anguish and complexity of what love really is, but without disrupting the story in any way. As I said, he’s neat.

I am by no means “hating on” Brown’s book. I read all 572 pages in a matter of days (a feat for someone as busy as me) and I hated putting it down each time I forced myself to sleep. Brown can tell a suspenseful story, to be certain. There are no good places to stop, and when it comes to plot twists he has a field day. Still I find that when I’m on the hunt for content the most surefire place to find it is in a Young Adult or even a children’s book. Somehow these authors have taken responsibility for the power they have to captivate young and old alike, and they have put it to good, thought-provoking use.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »