Tuesday, September 20, 2016

                                                   August Wrap-Up

1.  Chapter 29 Revisited - Jean Coleman.  August 5
     A Christian self-help book.  I enjoyed it, but not totally how I believe.  4 stars

2.  Room for Hope - Kim Vogel Sawyer.  August 17
     This is a Christian historical.  I really enjoyed this book and I gave it 5 stars.

3.  Meg - Steve Alten.  August 19
     Just what I expected.  A fun fast paced book about a prehistoric shark.  A great 
     summer read.  3 stars

4.  This Can't be Good - Jerry D. Young.  August 20
     These prepper/survival books are my weakness.  I really love them.  Most of
     Mr. Young's books are way too short, but I still love reading them.  4 stars

5.  An Old Man and His Tractor - Jerry D. Young.  August 20
     Another prepper story.  4 stars

6.  The Pursuit of God - A. W. Tozer  August 23
      Inspiring Christian non-fiction.  4 stars

7.  Man, It's Cold Outside - Jerry D. Young.  August 24
     What can I say LOL.  4 stars

8.  Barbara's Legacy - Jerry D. Young  August 24
      Ditto!  4 stars

9.  The Last Star (The 5th Wave, #3) - Rick Yancey  August 30
      It was a kind of anticlimatic ending to the trilogy.  3 stars

10. The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up - Marie Kondo  August 31
       I think this author has some serious mental health issues LOL.  3 stars

11. Conspicuous Consumption - Jerry D. Young  August 31
      I told you! LOL  4 stars

As you can see, I am in the mood for prepper fiction, and it looks like September is shaping up to 
more of the same.  I am getting a few other kinds of books in there as well.  

I have been thinking of a few other topics I want to write about, so I may start doing that, and I 
love watching tags on BookTube, so I may start doing some of those on this blog, and see how it 
goes in this format.  I just want to get back to posting more often.  


Monday, August 15, 2016

I am so far behind in my wrap-ups and reviews.  It's not that I haven't been reading, but I just never took the time to get back here to post about what I have been reading.  Since I am behind I am just going to list without thumbnails, what I read in June and July, with my rating.

June 2016

1. Used and Rare:  Travels in the Book World by Lawrence Goldstone.  June 5
       This is a book about books, which is something I love!  4 stars.

2.  Diary of a Fat Girl by Moira Mugweni  June 12
       This one was okay.  I probably would have loved it if I were a teen.  3 stars

3.  The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer  June 14
        I really loved this one, not only because it was about reading, but so much
         more about an occupied island during World War 2.     5 stars

4.  I Murdered My Library by Linda Grant.  June 15
       I loved this one and it made me think about owning books.  4 stars

5.  Split Second by Douglas E. Richards  June 15
       I really loved this book.  It was scientific but not above my understanding.  It was
       fast paced and not a boring moment in it.  5 stars

6.  The Pulse:  An EMP Prepper Survival Tale by Richard Hayden.  June 16
       This one was interesting but just okay.  3 stars

7.  Mail Order Bride Leah (Montana Mail Order Brides #1)  June 17
       This one was okay, but probably won't continue with the series.  3 stars

8.  The Lost Art of Reading:  Why Books Matter in a Distracted Time by David L. Ulin
     June 21
        I really had a hard time finishing this one.  I found it quite boring.  2 stars

9.  Me Before You by Jojo Moyes  June 28
       I really did not like this one at all.  The main character was a total idiot and I couldn't 
       wait to get it finished.  2 stars.

10.  The Vegetarian by Han Kang  June 30
         I'm not really sure how I feel about this book.  It really has nothing to do
         with being a vegetarian.   4 stars

July 2016

1.  When I'm Gone by Emily Bleeker  July 7
       I liked this one a lot and I really didn't see the twist coming.  4 stars

2.  Plague by Victor Methos  July 13
      I liked this one but I think I was too generous in the rating.  4 stars

3.  Innocence by Dean Koontz  June 17
       This was not one of the better Koontz I've read but it was ok.  3 stars

4.  Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan  July 23
      I really liked this one even though it was not what I expected.  4 stars

5.  The Museum of Literary Souls by John Connolly  July 26
       I really loved this one and wished it were longer.  5 stars

6.  Q's Legacy by Helene Hanff  July 27
       I like Ms. Hanff's writing and this was interesting.  4 stars

7.  Why Read by Mark Edmundson  July 30
       This one had boring parts, but overall it was pretty good 3 stars

8.  The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gillman  July 30
       I really loved this one.  The way the author slowly showed
       her characters descent into madness was inspired.   5 stars.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

"I had a dream."  That is what Yeong-hye told her husband when he found her in the kitchen throwing out all the meat.  Before the dreams, Yeong-hye filled her days being a good, complacent wife. 
She announces to her husband and then her parents and sister and brother that she doesn't eat meat.  This puts her family in an uproar, where they try to force their will on her.  The Vegetarian tells Yeong-hye's show of independence that eventually progressed into her mental illness, from the perspective of her husband, her brother-in-law, and her sister. 

This is a dark novel that delves into what people expect from us, and how our past can effect us.  When you do something out of the norm is it someone else that has the right to make decisions for us and how we want to live, even if what we are doing is not healthy for us.  I'm not really sure how I feel about this novel, but it definitely is thought provoking, and I believe it will stay with me for a long time.  I wasn't sure how to rate this but for now I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads.  I may go back and lower it at a later date.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

                                       May Wrap-Up

The month of May was a fair reading month for me.  I finished 8 books this month, with only one 
that I considered a real dud.  

The first book I finished was:

 The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey.  This is the second book of the 5th Wave trilogy.  I liked it pretty well, and really want to see how he ends this in the 
next book.  It did have some slow moments but overall it went pretty quickly.  I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads.

This is a short novella about a breakthrough treatment for cancer.  It was really interesting, and seems like it has a lot of promise.
I gave this one 4 stars on Goodreads.

 This is 3.5 of the Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer.  I enjoyed getting Lavana's back story, and helped me see that even though she had a hard childhood she is inherently evil.  It made me hate her even more.  I gave this one 3 stars on Goodreads.

 Perfect Peace by Daniel Black is a compelling story of a woman that wanted a daughter so badly that she almost destroyed her whole family and drove herself to madness to get one.  This was my favorite book of the month.  I gave it 5 stars on Goodreads.

This is a sweet second chance Amish story of a widow looking for meaning in her life after losing her husband.  She has always been fascinated by the Amish lifestyle and tries to find herself in their community.   I gave this one 4 stars on Goodreads.

This was a story of a girl held captive by a coven of vampires.  I thought the story line was weak, and the characters not fleshed out.  When she is captured she just seems to accept the whole idea of vampires, and then the leader of the vampires just falls for her instantly, which really irritated me.  This is the first of a long series of books that I will most definitely NOT be continuing.  I gave this one 2 stars on Goodreads.

I already posted my review of this book, so I won't say much here about it, except it was not my favorite.  I gave this one 3 stars on 

For a prepper novel, this was not bad, but I wasn't crazy for it.  I may just be burned out on this genre.  The writing was pretty good, and believe me that is a major problem with this genre.  I will probably try more of this authors work in the future.  I gave this one  3 stars on Goodreads.

       Well, that was my month.  Not a bad one, but only one real stand out book.  I am doing well with my Goodreads goal of 75 books for the year, and should make it by August if my reading continues and the pace I am going now.  So far for June I've read 8 books and there is still a week to go, so hopefully I can squeeze in a couple of more books!    

Monday, June 13, 2016

              It's been awhile...

 I can't believe it's been almost a month since I've posted anything.  It has been as hectic month, but
that isn't a good excuse!  I did go on vacation, and did a lot of driving!  We went to Arkansas to see
my son and his fiance, then to the beach.  It was a good but exhausting trip.  I did get to visit a great bookstore in Arkansas called the Dickson Street Bookstore, in Fayetteville, AK.  It was so cool.  I didn't buy any books there, but would love to go back when I have time to really look around.

The month of May was an okay reading month.  I ended up reading 8 books.  That's a decent amount of books, but it's a little less than I have been reading.  So far in June I'm not doing any better.  Hopefully the last half of the month will be better for me.

I'll be doing my wrap up in a day or two, and I will also tell you of the few books I've gotten.  So far I haven't fallen into the trap of buying bunches of books.  I have so many books now, it's hard to rationalize buying more.  

Thursday, May 19, 2016

I just finished Most Wanted by Lisa Scottoline.  I received a copy from St. Martin's Press for an honest review.

This is Ms. Scottoline's newest release, it is a story that could have been plucked from today's headlines.  Christine and Marcus want a baby, but because of a medical problem Marcus is unable to father his own child.  They decide to go with a sperm donor, and did all the right things.  They asked their doctor and went through a reputable sperm bank.  They poured over profiles until they felt they had found the right donor for them.  Christine got pregnant, and was so happy planning for the birth of their baby.  One day as she is watching the news she sees a man has been arrested as a serial killer that looks just like her donor.  She convinces Marcus and her best friend Lauren that he could very well be the biological father to her child.  They are in turmoil and are determined to find out the truth.  Marcus wants to sue the bank to tell them, but Christine decides to go to the prison and see him for herself and find out it he is donor 3319. 

This is the point where the story got unbelievable and frustrating for me.  She lies to her husband and alienates him to the point where she thinks her marriage could be over.  The things she does are implausible, and it really made me want to knock some sense into her.  When she meets the possible donor she feels a connection with him and wants to try to prove him innocent.  The things she does, and the ending are unbelievable.  Both Christine and Marcus are not likable characters, and it was hard for me to really care about them.  I enjoy Ms. Scottoline's writing and will try other books by her, but this one was disappointing for me.  I gave it 3 stars on Goodreads, but I think that was generous.  

Thursday, May 12, 2016

                                                               On Writing

I started this blog to write reviews of the books I read, and to write posts about books and reading in general, and as I look over my reviews they seem so stilted and amateurish.  I have loved to read since I was a young teenager, and always thought I would be able to write.  Because of things that happened during those younger years I really never got the education in English that I really needed and wanted.  I know I could study it on my own, but honestly I never really thought about it.  Until now.  Now I want to be able to write coherent and interesting reviews.  Unfortunately I can't seem to get down what I think and feel.  Maybe I am just out of practice, and worried about what people will think when they read what I have written.  I know it's not like I am trying to write the great American novel lol, but I do want my writing to be easy to read.  I will carry on and continue what I am doing, hoping that I will get better at it.   


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

I just finished reading Perfect Peace by Danial Black.  This is a historical fiction book published by St. Martin's Press in 2010.

This is the heart-breaking story of Emma Jean Peace, the mother of a fast growing family living in rural Arkansas in the 1920-1950's.
Emma Jean HAS to have a girl, after having 6 boys, she just knows her 7th child will be the girl she needs.  When she gives birth to another boy, she decided to "make" her own girl since God wouldn't give her one.  This starts the journey of Emma Jean and her daughter Perfect.  She wants to lavish on her daughter all the love and attention, and gifts she never received as a child.  Her own mother abused her and ridiculed her just because she was born too black.  She always dreamed of someday having her own daughter so she could love her and give her all the things her own mother had never given her.  Emma Jean was a strong willed woman and always got her way.  Unfortunately she didn't realize the ramifications of what she was doing, and how it would effect her family for the rest of their lives.

I loved this book and the style it was written going from the past to the future and the present to let the reader know just how much harm Emma Jean did to her family.  All she wanted was a little girl to love, and instead abused her own children, and possibly caused the most pain to her own self.  I gave this book 5 stars, and it will resonate with me for a long time to come.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

                                     April Wrap Up

Here is my first monthly wrap up.  I am really trying to learn how to get into words what I want to 
say about the books I've read.  I don't think I give very good reviews, but hopefully I will get better at it.

In the month of April I read 9 books.  I feel like that is a good reading month for me.  

This is the first book I finished this month.  This is a story about an overweight girl who seems to have self confidence, and to not care about
what people say about her.  Her mother was a beauty queen in the local beauty pageant, and now is in charge of it every year.  This year Dumplin decides to enter the pageant.  She is in love with a popular, handsome boy, that seems to return her feelings.  For some reason this seems to undermine her self esteem.  I liked this book a lot, and I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads.

This was a short book about a very special book store.  He carries something for everyone, but his books are not for sale.  He sells time to read.  He also carefully inspects each book to make sure they are safe to read.  See what happens when he forgets to inspect one.  I gave this 3 stars on Goodreads.

This book was suspenseful and I was able to read it really fast.  Even though I was able to get through it so fast, I still found myself wanting it to end.  I did enjoy the multiple POV's.  I think it would have gotten very boring it the whole book was told from Cassie's perspective.  I did enjoy this one and am
currently reading the sequel to this.  4 stars on Goodreads.

This book is so highly acclaimed that I really hesitate to put my 2 cents worth in, but here goes.  I really did not like this book at all.  First of all, if you "consider yourself white"  you have a wonderful idyllic life, with no problems, have all the money you need, live in mansions, and never have to worry about anything.   I know that I can't understand what people of color have to go through in their daily lives in relation to their race. The terrible things that sometimes happen to them just because they are black is horribly wrong, and as a nation this needs to be addressed, but this book is written in
a snobbish and prejudiced way.  The worst thing in reading this for me was when he said the word body over and over again, as in protect my black body,
or they want to destroy my black body.  It really started to grate on me.  I gave this one 2 stars on Goodreads.

This was a very interesting and different twist on the Gospel.  An atheist helps model a computer generated world like our own world.  The only thing is without a Law Giver the society quickly destroys themselves.  The only way to keep them from self destruction is to introduce laws given from the Law Giver that created them.  A virus is unleashed in the world and the only way to save them is to create a character like himself to go into the world and show them and teach them how they should live.  This book was so insightful, and gives you a deeper understanding of God and  His love for us.  I gave this one 5 stars on Goodreads.

I really liked this book and I have a review on an earlier post.  I gave this one
4 stars on Goodreads.

I really loved this book of a mother with terminal cancer and her son reading books together, and discussing them as she goes for her treatments.  They both love reading, and so they create their own 2 person book club.  This book was so lovely to read.  The writing was intellectual without sounding snobbish.  This is not only about the books, but also about the mother coming to terms with her impending death, and the son making memories with his mother.  They had a special bond, and I enjoyed reading about all the books, even if they were books I had no interest in reading.  I gave this one 5 stars on Goodreads.  I have a review of this one in an earlier post.

This is about Tom and his friends going to Northern Canada for a fishing trip.  They are stranded by an EPM thousands of miles from civilization and follows them as they try to get ready for the winter in the harsh environment, where one mistake could prove fatal for them all.  I really enjoy these type of books, and have read some pretty bad ones.  Mr. Craven's writing was immensely readable, and the story was really interesting.  I gave this one 4 stars on Goodreads.

This was a very interesting book.  I've never read anything like it before.  I have my review of this in an earlier post.  I gave this one 4 stars on Goodreads.

Well, that was in for the month.  All in all I had a good reading month.  On deck is

1.  The Infinite Sea by Rich Yancy  (I'm 75 percent done)
2.  Fairest by Marissa Meyer
3.  Perfect Peace by Daniel Black.

Friday, April 29, 2016

All I can say about this book is WOW, what a ride.  I have never read anything quite like this.  This is a book about mental illness from the perspective of the mentally ill character.  It was perplexing at times, but it  really showed the descent into his psychotic episode, where the real world was somehow mixed up with his delusions.  As time went by you start to see where the real world and the people around him were all a part of his delusion, as he starts to react more with the people around him in the facility his parents take him for help.  It is almost like his is coming up for air and starting to see clearly as the medication and therapy starts working.

This book helped me see what a person with schizophrenia goes through and how debilitating  it
is.  And even in the end when Caden leaves the facility he realizes he could fall back into the
same hole again.  The Captain is waiting for him.

I never have liked books about ships, which is Cadens delusion, but I found the writing was smooth, and pulled me into the story.   All in all I would recommend this book and gave it 4 stars on Goodreads.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

I just finished this book last night and wanted to post a short review.  I usually love novels and non fiction books that feature books and reading, and that's why I decided to pick up this book.  I am not really into reading about people with terminal illness, but this really piqued my interest.  I so enjoyed reading this.  This is a book about a mother that is dying from pancreatic cancer, and her son.  They both love reading, so they decide to have a 2 person book club to discuss the books they read while she is having treatments.  The books they decide to read, and how they felt about them, has a lot to do
with the mothers pending death.

This book really touched me.  The writing was wonderful.  It was literary without sounding pretentious.  It really made me want to read more literary fiction, and also to do more.  I'm not sure what 'more' is right now, but I felt a tug to make more of my life.  So this one is a winner for me and in Goodreads I gave it 5 stars.  I am sure this will be in my list of favorites for 2016, if not my number one favorite for the year.   

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

    My new book blog...

Hi, and welcome to my new book blog.  I intend to post my thoughts on the books I read here, along with book hauls, and perhaps book tags I have come 
across on BookTube or Goodreads.  I probably won't have too many book hauls of physical books at least, as I do most of my reading on my Kindle.  I will also do my monthly wrap ups and occasionally a full review.  
Right now I am just kind of playing it by ear, as I am new to this.

This week I have just finished Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel.  I really enjoyed this book.  The reading was fluid, and made me feel like I was floating easily through the book.  It is a story of a post apocalyptic world where a super flu has killed 99% of the worlds population.  It goes back and forth from the past before the virus and 20 years after the virus.  The story line centers around a certain group of people and what happens to them before and after the flu.  It wasn't what I expected, but it was still enjoyable.  My Goodreads rating was 4 stars.