Wednesday, November 3, 2010

For the Record: October 2010

  • 12 books finished in October, and with some mini-vacations lined up in November, I have hopes that another good reading month is in store for me.  
  • Favorite book this month? So hard to pick!  Loved High Fidelity.  LOVED 84 Charing Cross Road.  LOVED Star of the Sea.
  • Least favorite book this month? 13 Reasons Why. I know others have loved it, but I really didn't.  I'll explain below.
  • Other stats: 2 library books, 4 books read to my kiddos, 1 ARC, 1 Book Club pick.

87. Thirteen Reasons Why, Jay Asher (2) This is Teen Fiction about suicide, which is one of the major reasons, I'm guessing, it has made such an impression on so many people. I didn't end up writing a review of it for my blog because I was so disappointed...I could've written a post called "13 Reasons Why I Didn't Like the Book" but I just couldn't bring myself to do it: it isn't horrible, I just feel it wasn't well done. Especially because I read it after reading Speak, which was amazing. 13 Reasons was rather 2-Dimensional to me.  None of the characters seemed real; I didn't identify with anything or anyone.  The whole thing seemed very contrived and dramatic.

88. Strawberry Girl, Lois Lenski (4) We really enjoyed this book. It's not a very happy book as far as plot line goes, but the well-written dialect was so much fun.  (see my full review here)

89. Wolf Hall, Hilary Mantel (4) In retrospect, this book would have made a better impression on me if I'd simply been able to find some larger chunks of quiet time to spend with it.  Not a book to be read in snatches while kids are playing and pestering, that's for sure.  (see my full review here)

90. 84 Charing Cross Road, Helene Hanff (5) Have you read this??? It's fabulous! And short, which is also good. It is nonfiction: a collection of letters written post WWII between Helene in NY and a small used book shop in London. A remarkable amount of story and humor for such a small book. Highly recommended. (see my full review here)

91. The Goose Girl, Shannon Hale (3.5) This is a retelling of a classic tale, and doesn't fail to disappoint. If you enjoy fairy tale retellings, this is a good one. (see my full review here)

92. High Fidelity, Nick Hornby (4) This is the first Nick Hornby I've read, although I've enjoyed the movies based on his books (Fever Pitch & About a Boy in addition to High Fidelity). This was so well written and funny that I was just enthralled. (see my full review here)

93. The Light at Tern Rock, Julia L. Sauer (3) This is a short Newbery Honor book that I read aloud to my 6 year old.  This is a case where it would have served me well to do a little research on the book before diving in.  (Sometimes jumping into a book or film with no previous knowledge is a fun discovery process, sometimes it just makes it disappointing and unenjoyable.)  This is a Christmas story written in 1952 that seems to exist solely to impart a moralistic tale to ungrateful children.  I'm being a little dramatic, and the truth is that many people love this story.  In the right setting with the right expectations, it would be a nice little story I suppose.  But we found it boring and trite.

94. The Long Winter, Laura Ingalls Wilder (3) I love the Ingalls family and the Little House series, but this book is just storm after freezing storm for way too many pages.  I had a hard time making it through when I read it as a child, and my daughter had a hard time making it through with me reading it to her.  I understand that the winter was a significant one, and that it is difficult to put into words what they experienced, but feel that this was more repetitive than anything.  Much easier to appreciate as an adult.

95. Prisoners in the Palace, Michaela MacColl (3.5) Taking place in the year before Victoria became queen, this is a fun historical novel. Geared towards teens, but really enjoyable. (see my full review here)

96. Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Laura Amy Schlitz (4) Much better than I thought it would be (little monologues written for a school performance--sounded boring). The perfect way to get an overview of the Middle Ages. (see my full review here)

97. April Twilights, Willa Cather (3) The first book Willa Cather had published, and her only published poetry. Most of the poems were mediocre, but there were a few good ones. It was fun to see some of her forming inspirations. (see my full review here)

98. Star of the Sea, Joseph O'Connor (4.5) Read for my book club, this is a story of the Irish during the famine in 1847. It was told in such a unique way, and was interesting and well written. The story takes place on a ship on its way to America from Ireland, though much of it was back-story.  Full review coming soon!

1 comment:

  1. Impressive list...i'm jealous of all the reading you get done...I think got three or four in.


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