Sunday, January 31, 2010

New book

I really enjoyed Gentlemen.  As an educator, it reminded me that we really can't know what's going on in teenagers' minds when we only see them one hour per day, and then only within a group setting.  We also need to realize that they don't always have a realistic impression of their teachers -- their thoughts about teachers are influenced by all of their prior educational experiences.  Scary things can happen when these misconceptions contribute to an already stressful situation.

I'm now reading The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, by David Wroblewksi.  It was recommended to me by a friend that knows I'm a dog lover.  I already know I'm going to have to recommend it to my husband.  So far, I know it's about a boy who was born mute and the special relationship he has with his dog.  It's an "Oprah Book" which doesn't usually do anything for me, but just thought I'd mention it.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

A New Book

I finished Epic, and I've spent a while thinking about why I really didn't like it.  It's an adventure story, but I didn't get the buildup of tension as I was reading it.  It seemed more like they had three different adventures that they completed.  For example, in The Knife of Never Letting Go, the kids just kept getting deeper and deeper into more and more problems and the tension built up to the end (where we are left HANGING for the second book, which I wasn't happy about, but that's another story.)  In this book, I just kept waiting to see what happened, so that I could get on to my next book.  Which I have done . . .

Gentlemen, by Michael Northrop.  I love this cover--that's what drew my attention.  It's interesting because when I was searching for an image of this book, I came upon a blog by the author of how this cover was chosen.  He's lucky the folks at Scholastic are so smart, because the final product is MUCH better than the original one.  Anyway, the premise of the book is that a high school boy from "the wrong side of the tracks" disappears and his friends begin to suspect their weird remedial English teacher.  They are reading Crime and Punishment (yea, I know that would never happen in a remedial English class) and that definitely influences their conclusions about their missing friend.  It's a unique premise, a quick read, and a good book for boys. 

Monday, January 18, 2010

New Book Time

I really liked Jenna Fox, but I'm not sure why.  It was certainly far-fetched, but I guess it was believable enough that it kept me engaged.  I really didn't figure out what was going on until it was revealed, which I guess was also part of the entertainment.  It is a quick read, and even though a bit sci-fi, it does begin to explore some moral issues.

Now I am going to read The China Study:  The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted, by T. Colin Campbell, and Thomas M. Campbell II.  We have been trying to eat healthier -- given our high cholesterol and my husband's recent diagnosis if diabetes, so I thought maybe this book, recommended by a friend, would help motivate me.

Friday, January 15, 2010

The next book . . .

I loved Splendor, of course.  I just love historical fiction, then you add romance to that and I'm there!  I wasn't totally happy with the ending, but still was a very entertaining read.

Now I'm reading The Adoration of Jenna Fox.  17-year-old girl wakes from a coma after a year and has to re-learn everything about herself.  She doesn't remember her family and can't feel emotion.  But something else is going on . . . .

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Thank God I'm starting a new book .. .

Before I Die was heartwrenching.  It was a very well-written book that dealt with a teenager's fight through a terminal illness in a very realistic way.  I could feel her emotions, and the romance made it all the more tender.  Be warned, though.  You will cry -- for quite a while at the end of the book.

And now for something lighter -- Spendor, by Anna Godbersen, the fourth book in The Luxe series.  I love historical romance, and I loved the first three books in this series, so I'm looking forward to this one!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Another book started ...

What to say about Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society?  It was wonderful.  A very feel-good, uplifting book, but also sad.  It tells of a period of time and a place during and just after WWII that few people know about.  Definitely recommended reading.

I've started  Before I Die, by Jenny Downham, and I suspect it won't be quite as uplifting.  It's about a dying 16-year-old girl who has a list of things to do before she dies -- the first is to have sex, of course.  The flap says its "uplifting, life-affirming, joyous" so maybe I'll be surprised.


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