Thursday, October 25, 2007

Mini Reviews for a Bunch of Books!

Book: Evening Class by Maeve Binchy

Rating: A-

I just love Maeve Binchy's books! Even though I got majorly stuck right in the middle of this one, with many other book distractions, once I picked it up again, I finished in just a day or so. This story is about a bunch of different people whose lives come together with the creation of an Italien evening class. Not my most favorite book of hers, but still... great story and great characters.

Book: Things Not Seen by Andrew Clements

Rating: A

An interesting YA novel that grabbed from the beginning when our main character wakes up to find himself invisible. He goes on to figure out what happened and how to resolve it... meanwhile, he falls in love with a blind girl! There's more to the story in Things Hoped For... which I need to now go find quickly! I loved it!

Book: Shadowland.... and The Ninth Key both by Meg Cabot

Rating: A- first book, B for the second one

These are the first two books in Meg Cabot's Mediator series. I really enjoyed the first one, getting the characters established and so on.... but the second one was a little too slow or something, the story not as engaging. Nevertheless, I'm hooked and will keep reading the rest. I've got to find out more about Jesse, the hottest ghost ever!

Book: Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

Rating: B+

I can't remember if I talked about this one already, but if I did... here I go again! Here's an amazing simply story... the diary of a kid trying to survive 7th grade, and it's getting amazing attention! My 7th grade son LOVED it and wants to read it over and over again. This was our hottest selling book at the recent book fair and Scholastic can't keep them in stock. I think there's going to be a sequel... of course!

Booking Through Thursday: Read with Abandon

Booking Through Thursday

Today’s suggestion is from Cereal Box Reader

I would enjoy reading a meme about people’s abandoned books. The books that you start but don’t finish say as much about you as the ones you actually read, sometimes because of the books themselves or because of the circumstances that prevent you from finishing. So . . . what books have you abandoned and why?

Rarely do I abandon books, but several do come to mind:

The Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver: I didn't like the story
American Gods by Neil Gaiman: made me too squeamish, I may try again another day
Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All by Allan Gurganus: I liked the story, but thought it would never end and I wanted to read other things
Flush by Carl Hiaasen: boring
The Idiot by Fyodor Dostoevsky: got distracted and just never finished!
The Wings of a Dove by Henry James: too hard!
Peter Pan by James Barrie: another one I mean to finish some day!
Scarlett by Alexandria Ripley: didn't like it at all!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Live and In-Person..... Typography

I wasn't around last week, so I'm doing both this week's and this week's question.

Booking Through Thursday


Have you ever met one of your favorite authors? Gotten their autograph?
How about an author you felt only so-so about, but got their autograph anyway? Like, say, at a book-signing a friend dragged you to?
How about stumbling across a book signing or reading and being so captivated, you bought the book?

YES! I have met a couple. My daughter and I stood in line for over 2 hours to met Stephenie Meyer and she signed copies of both Twilight and New Moon. That was cool. Also, we met Shannon Hale and she signed our Goose Girl book. She is so great!

We've met a couple other local not-so-famous authors at the library, but didn't have books for them to sign. Oh, and I have a couple of friends that have written books, so of course they've signed my copies!

Having a friend drag me to a book signing, not THAT would be interesting!

I think that no matter the book, if I hear an author talk about their book, I'm always instantly captivated and want to find that book somehow. No wonder authors spend so much time promoting and cruising the country when they get a new book. They know it works!


What’s the worst typographical error you’ve ever found in (or on) a book?

I just read one just the other day but I can't remember what it was! I think the worst errors in a book are ones that the goof almost makes sense, so you go, "WHAT?" while you're reading, then stop, think, look again, and then realize that it's a goof. Or you sit there and wonder if it's a goof.

Anyway, they sure are annoying and sometimes you do wonder where the proofreading was and how certain mistakes can get by.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Review: Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell

Book: Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
Genre: Classic
Rating: A+

I think I'm officially adding this one to my all time favorites list! I really liked it the first time I read it, but this 2nd go around, I really REALLY liked it!

What do I like so much about it? First off, the characters. They are wonderfully drawn people that you totally come to love/hate/get annoyed with, etc. There's our heroine, Molly, who is just so likable and normal amongst so many crazy people, who you want to "win" in the end so bad! Then there's her step-sister, Cynthia, who you can't completely decide if you like her or not. She's overshadows Molly, which makes you crazy, yet she knows and says, "so sorry" all the time. Then there's the brothers with completely different personalities, one of whom you come to really really like before it's over, even though he gets a little mixed up there in the middle! Then there's the annoying stepmom, the doting dad, the fun squire, the meddling spinster sisters..... ah... it goes on and on!

Secondly, I just love the soap opera-ish plot and story line. Lots of stuff going on, granted, lots of it is quite predictable, but you know, that's okay with me!

Anyway, we'll be discussing this one at book club tomorrow night, and watching a couple of clips from the movie, so I'm excited and anxious to find out if any body else enjoys it like I do!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Where've I Been?

It was Fall Break this past weekend, and we took off for an adventure. Take a peek here.

Now, this week is book fair and only a gazillion or so other things, so I'll be scarce until next week, then it will be major blog reading catch up for me!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Random Book ChitChat on a Friday

So, I've totally immersed myself in "Wives and Daughters," loving it as much this second go-round as I did the first many years ago. Meanwhile, "Evening Class" is getting totally neglected. I can't seem to get emotionally involved in that one, and I know so many of you LOVE that book! It's the only one I'm reading for a challenge (Something About Me) right now, so I need to finish it! I need to get going on another Award Challenge book too. I'm not doing so well on all the challenges lately. And there's so many more that are tempting me: The Cardathon one, the Decades one, the 888 one, just to name a few.

But as you may know, I'm doing my own challenge which is basically, The read-as-many-YA-novels-in-a-month's-time-as-you-can Challenge! The book fair starts in a week, and I like to have read some of the new books that Scholastic is promoting, so that's taken up a lot of reading time. I've really enjoyed the books this time though... sometimes they are promoting fluff ones, but this time, they've been really good.

Anyway, as soon as that 's all over, maybe I can get back to some of my regular reading lists. I am nearly done with the TBR Challenge though, I only have two left. However, one of them I can't find! It's making me wonder if I ever had it in the first place... #8 of the Unfortunate Events series. I just assumed we had them all, but maybe we never ended up with that one. Anyway, I need to finish that series one of these days.

Books on hold that I'm really anxious to get my hands on are: Extras by Scott Westerfeld, Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale, and Dragonhaven by Robin McKinley. Oh, and the 2nd book in Meg Cabot's Mediator series. Hopefully they'll start showing up soon... well... maybe after book fair would be good!

I guess that's it for the book chitchat of the week! Have a great reading weekend everyone! We're told it's going to snow here, so my plan is to curl up and read, read, read!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Decorum

Booking Through Thursday

Do you have “issues” with too much profanity or overly explicit (ahem) “romantic” scenes in books? Or do you take them in stride? Have issues like these ever caused you to close a book? Or do you go looking for more exactly like them? (grin)

I would say... Yes, Yes, Yes, and..... um... No... !

Yes, I do have issues with too much profanity and overly explicit scenes. BUT... I can take them in stride... up to a point. Now, defining that point is where I get flustered. I hate... HATE... that F Bomb word with a passion, but I've stuck with many a book where it's used quite a bit, however, I've also closed the book and put it down if it shows up so much that I start feeling icky.

As far as the romantic scenes... I'm thinking most of the books I read steer clear of this... some come close.... but not quite.... you know. So I haven't really had to face the "should I stop reading" decision regarding this one. So obviously the answer is no to that last question, I don't look for these kinds of books. I DO look for nice romantic love story books though! But that's a different category, right?

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

September Recap

My Cabots: trying to catch up and read them all

How to Be Popular by Meg Cabot
Shadowland by Meg Cabot (the first in the Mediator series)

My favorite: Shadowland... very excited to start this series... waiting now for the 2nd one to become available at the library.

My YA’s/Teens: for Book Fair preparation

Incantation by Alice Hoffman
The Old Willis Place by Mary Downing Hahn
Code Orange by Caroline B. Cooney
Song of the Sparrow by Lisa Ann Sandell
Igraine the Brave by Cornelia Funke

My favorite: Song of the Sparrow... another take on the King Arthur story

My Challenges: really falling behind with these!!!

Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner
Sea Glass by Anita Shreve

My favorite: I really liked them both, but I’d say Angle of Repose edged out Sea Glass just a bit!

One left over: read for no reason but just because someone somewhere mentioned it and I thought... "sounds good!"

Castle Dor by Arthur Quiller-Couch and Daphne du Maurier: another take on the Tristan/Isolde story, a story I can’t resist in any form!


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