Saturday, October 2, 2010

book butterfly reviews

I read another 9 this past month, which sounds like a lot, but I'm actually surprised I got that many in, considering those on this month's list took me a week to get through.  Reading has kind of taken the place of any other leisure activity in my life right now.  I haven't scrapbooked in months, I hardly ever play piano, I don't exercise, etc etc.  I have free time and I think "yay, I can make a dent in that book."

Which isn't all bad-reading is good for the soul and the imagination-although I should probably be a bit more well-rounded.

Or something.

Onto September's list.  Some good ones, some bad, some more continuations of series and start of new ones.

 

411628 How Many Roads?:   (Hearts of the Children Vol. 3) by Dean Hughes liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

I liked this about as much as the others in this series. I like the turn in Kathy's story, and the developments with Diane. Two more to go. :)

 

 

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Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella  liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

I go back and forth regarding if I like Sophie Kinsella as an author or not. She definitely has a distinctive style--all her narrators sound exactly the same. In fact, the main boy/girl plot in this one is so very similar to Shopaholic, it's embarassing. Anyway, the rest of the plot was cute, and I liked the light love story, but the F-word is thrown around so very casually (as I've said before, is that a British thing?) that I'd have a hard time recommending it to anyone, though I want to, because I loved the last chapter especially.

 

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Mockingjay (Hunger Games #3) by Suzanne Collins

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** spoiler alert ** This book was much different from the others, much darker, lots more violence, and quite a bit sadder. The plot was a bit more convoluted, and in this third and final end to the saga, we basically see Katniss grow up and almost literally give up and want to die. Just about everyone she loves is taken from her and she starts to question who is on who's side, including those closest to her.
I read this out loud with my husband, making the last 10 pages really difficult since I was crying. I think had I been reading it to myself I would have been sobbing like a baby; it touched me that deeply.
In the end, I liked it a lot, and am so impressed by Collins' fictional story of Panem. The resolution was very sad, but satisfying. I can't wait to see the movies as they come out and highly recommend this series.

 

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The Heretic Queen by Michelle Moran liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

This book about princes, princesses, and pharaohs of Egypt was just interesting enough for me to keep reading, but I don't think I'd recommend it to anyone. It was a fictional story based on factual people and events, and the author painted a very clear picture of what court was like at this time in history, but it was nothing to get too excited about.

 

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The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

** spoiler alert ** This book wasn't quite what I expected it to be; I'd heard from several that it was sad, but good, and I heard the same about the movie. My problem is, unfortunately, all the interesting things happen within the first few chapters--the 14 year old is raped and murdered, which we know from the book jacket and all the movie previews--but then afterwards, there's really no plot to speak of. The remainder of the book has to do with everyone's reactions over the following 10 years.
In that sense, it was very much like My Sister's Keeper, The Hours, and The Memory Keeper's Daughter--just dealing with emotions and reactions of a horrible crime and tragedy. It's beautifully written, but I kept hoping for more, for a murder-mystery story I guess, for more of the solving-side of the story.
The murderer never does get caught, although the family is sure they know who he is, and he does die a poetic death, but I found it very unfulfilling. If you liked the three other books I mentioned, then I recommend this book to you. Otherwise, I rather wish I'd skipped it myself.

 

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Where Are You Now?  by Mary Higgins Clark liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

This was just OK for me, mostly for the reason that there were so dang many characters it was hard to keep track of them all. 18 chapters in and the author was still introducing new characters each chapter. Annoyed me right off the bat. Plus, the perspective kept changing from 1st person narrative for the main character and then 3rd person omniscient for everyone else. I found that distracting and I still don't quite understand the reasoning behind it.
Murder/mystery type story with plenty of action and plot (and characters, as I mentioned) though in the end, I still wasn't even really sure who did what and why. I mean I DO, but there was never an "Ohhh!" moment when you find out whodunnit and all of a sudden it all makes sense. *shrug* When I got to that point, I was more like "Ehh..."

 

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Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

This is one of my favorite movies, so I was very pleased that I liked the book so much. It was just as witty and charming...I so love the characters. I think I want to be Idgy when I grow up. :

 

 

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Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

I'm sad to admit I was disappointed in this book. I've liked the others I read by Shannon Hale and had high hopes for this one. Too bad...This one is about a case of on-purpose-mistaken-identity, and the beginning was good as was the ending, but the middle was tedious. I'm not one for zillions of made up city names and songs that make no sense. Proof that I'm not a fantasy girl at heart.

 

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A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray liked it (my current rating)liked it (my current rating)

This book wasn't really for me...the first half was all right, and interesting, but the rest of it was a bit too out there for me. I liked learning about Gemma's power and secrets, and even the first visit into 'the beyond' was ok, but then it starts to get really weird, semi-adult, and in the end, I didn't care for it.

 

In the end, "Fried Green Tomatoes" and "Mockingjay" were the only ones I'd really recommend to fellow readers.  I kind of forgot that I was in the middle of the Hearts of the Children series which probably means I'm not all that into it.  Sometimes I dislike reading books that others have recommended so highly, because then I expect a lot going into it (ex: Book of a Thousand Days) but it is what it is.  We all have our preferences and certain styles that we get into.

What have you been reading?

3 comments:

leaner said...

I just read Dracula by Bram Stoker. Interesting read and a classic of course. If you haven't read it, you should, if only to say you have. (Its long 444 pages I think. The writing is just so different, it took me a while to get into it.)

Next up the Hunger Games #1, I think. But then again, after Dracula I might just reread Twilight. tee hee.

laurie b said...

i love reading your reviews. you inspire me to keep better track of what i read. and to read more. :-)

jinxi~ aka angi said...

Im reading a book by Erma Bombeck. I love her!!! :)
Other than that.. reading lots of books to Hunter!

ps: Idgy was awesome!