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24 January 2009 @ 12:43 am
Book #1
Title: Austenland
Author: Shannon Hale
# of Pages: 208
Rating (out of five): 3
Summary of the book: Thirty-three-year-old Jane Hayes, who has a fairly serious addiction to the Colin Firth version of Pride and Prejudice, inherits a trip to Pembrook Park, Kent, England, the location of a resort where guests dress, talk, think, and act in ways that Jane Austen would approve. Refusing to lie about her age, even on vacation in a place right out of Austen's England, Jane finds herself quickly overcoming the obsession with Mr. Darcy that may very well have jeopardized her 13 "relationships" over the years. Left to walk in last to dinner, mildly obsessed with one of the hotel's gardeners, and annoyed by another guest's overeager attempts to bag a man, Jane is eager to return to Manhattan. Then she decides to give it all one more chance, since Great-Aunt Carolyn did see fit to pay for the entire vacation.

Review: Nice quick read to start the year. Something light and easy and something I can say that I can say I am obsessed with, especially since I have watched the BBC version of the P&P several times and have read the book and loved it.

Book #2
Title: Edge of Recall
Author: Kirsten Heitzmann
# of Pages: 416
Rating (out of five): 4
Summary of the book: Tessa is a landscape architect obsessed with labyrinths. She is drawn to the ruins of an intriguing labyrinth; however, to follow her passion, she must work with a man she once loved but who ultimately betrayed her.
Review: Very well done. Even though it was a cheeky, Christian romance book at the end of the book, it was very much a page turner and at times I was spooked out. I was pleasantly surprised at how little the author mentioned Christianity in the book.
 
 
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28 July 2008 @ 05:27 pm
Title: Lock and Key
Author: Sarah Dessen
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult
# of pages: 422
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A-

Description of the book: When she is abandoned by her alcoholic mother, high school senior Ruby winds up living with Cora, the sister she has not seen for ten years, and learns about Cora's new life, what makes a family, how to allow people to help her when she needs it, and that she too has something to offer others.

Review: A nice, quick read. After reading a couple of her books in which I wasn't really impressed with the story, I was somewhat hesitant in reading this book and I wasn't sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the writing and was just as please with the book as I was when I read Just Listen last spring.

Up next: The Waterboy (has to be returned to the library)


17 / 50 books. 34% done!


5805 / 15000 pages. 39% done!
 
 
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21 July 2008 @ 02:13 pm
Title: All she ever wanted
Author: Lynn Austin
Genre: Fiction, Christian
# of pages: 400
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: B+

Description of the book (from the back of the book): Thirty-five years ago, Kathleen fled her home, desperate to cast off weights of poverty and shame. But an unexpected invitation from her sister unwittingly draws her back to the sleepy New York town, her own daughter in tow.

A trip meant to salvage her relationship with her daughter changes course as Kathleen reexamines her own childhood. But even more enlightening are the stories of Eleanor, her once-vibrant mother, and Fiona, the grandmother she barely knew.

The more Kathleen learns, the more answers she seeks concerning her family's mysterious past. Yet with the past exposed, Kathleen is torn between her need to forgive and the urge to forget.

Review: A nice quick read, especially since its a familiar formula that I have encountered from Austin. While most of the book is well-written, the end of the book is a bit of downer, especially in the last few pages, where it becomes rather formulaic. Overall, it was good.

Up next: The Waterboy by Bobby Ackles


16 / 50 books. 32% done!


5383 / 15000 pages. 36% done!
 
 
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04 July 2008 @ 10:52 pm
Title: Secrets
Author: Kristen Heitzmann
Genre: Fiction, Christian
# of Pages: 410
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A

Description of the book: Lance Michelli is on a quest to discover the secrets his grandmother cannot tell. What happened all those years ago, and what is it she so desperately needs him to find? The old villa in Sonoma holds the answers, but it is now owned by a young woman who neither knows nor cares about his mission. But Rese Barret is a force to contend with, and her own impending storm could sweep him up as their sparring creates a fierce and uncomfortable attraction.

Review: This was my third time reading the book and just like the previous two times that I read the book, I really enjoyed it. While it is a Christian novel, I found it to be well written and quite enjoyable. Hopefully the next two books in the series will be equally as so.

Up Next: Not quite sure yet.


15 / 50 books. 30% done!


4983 / 15000 pages. 33% done!
 
 
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22 June 2008 @ 10:24 pm
Title: 21: Bringing Down the House
Author: Ben Mezrick
Genre: Non-fiction
# of pages: 340
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: B+

Description of the book: The long-running New York Times bestseller that has become a cultural phenomenon, Bringing Down the House is an action-filled caper carried out by the unlikeliest of cons -- supersmart geeks. Gambling pervaded the M.I.T. campus, and genius kids with money and glittering futures were just as likely to be found in a Paradise Island casino as in the school library. A highly elite group of mathletes was recruited to join The Club, a small, secret blackjack organization dedicated to counting cards and beating the major casinos across the nation at their own game. As a successful ring of card savants, backed by a mysterious ringleader and shadowy investors, they infiltrated Vegas and won millions.

Review: If you are thinking that the book is going to be anything like the movie, you have got that wrong. While there are parts that are slightly sluggish, the book does move at a quick pace and you are seduced into what seems to be a glizty type of life. Recommened.

Up next: I have not a clue


14 / 50 books. 28% done!


4573 / 15000 pages. 30% done!
 
 
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26 May 2008 @ 10:36 am
Title: Remember Me?
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Genre: Chick-lit
# of pages: 400 Pages
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A-

Description of the book: When twenty-eight-year-old Lexi Smart wakes up in a London hospital, she’s in for a big surprise. Her teeth are perfect. Her body is toned. Her handbag is Vuitton. Having survived a car accident—in a Mercedes no less—Lexi has lost a big chunk of her memory, three years to be exact, and she’s about to find out just how much things have changed.

Somehow Lexi went from a twenty-five-year-old working girl to a corporate big shot with a sleek new loft, a personal assistant, a carb-free diet, and a set of glamorous new friends. And who is this gorgeous husband—who also happens to be a multimillionaire? With her mind still stuck three years in reverse, Lexi greets this brave new world determined to be the person she…well, seems to be. That is, until an adorably disheveled architect drops the biggest bombshell of all.

Suddenly Lexi is scrambling to catch her balance. Her new life, it turns out, comes complete with secrets, schemes, and intrigue. How on earth did all this happen? Will she ever remember? And what will happen when she does?

Review: I really liked the book. Unlike the Shopholic series, there was also a bit of maturity to the character, which was nice. Sometimes I have been pulling my teeth when reading any of the Shopoholic books, but I found this a nice pleasant read and an easy one after reading "Mistress of the Sun". Like Sophie's other books, its a great read for the beach.

Next up: 21: Bringing Down the House


13 / 50 books. 26% done!


4233 / 15000 pages. 28% done!
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22 May 2008 @ 08:44 pm
Title: Mistress of the Sun
Author: Sandra Gulland
Genre: Historical fiction
# of pages: 352
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A-

Description of the book: A novel of Louise de la Vallière, mistress of the Sun King. As a girl, she won the trust of the wildest of horses; as a woman, she would win the love of the most charismatic of kings.

Review: Thought that the book was really good. The reason that I say this is that not only where the descriptions wonderful, but the author had a way of keeping the reader interested in the material to the point where I had a couple of nights where I could have lost track of time, had it not been for ESPN Radio blaring next to me as I read the book. If you are looking for something that will keep you entertained for a few days, highly recommend it. Also if you happen to like historical fiction and anything surrounding the court of the Sun King.

Next up: Remember Me? by Sophie Kinsella


12 / 50 books. 24% done!


3833 / 15000 pages. 26% done!
 
 
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05 May 2008 @ 12:59 am
Title: Look at me in the eye: my life with asperger's
Author: John Elder Robison
Genre: non-fiction, memoir
# of Pages: 288
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: B+

Description of the book (from Chapters.ca): Look Me in the Eye is the moving, darkly funny story of growing up with Asperger’s at a time when the diagnosis simply didn’t exist. A born storyteller, Robison takes you inside the head of a boy whom teachers and other adults regarded as “defective,” who could not avail himself of KISS’s endless supply of groupies, and who still has a peculiar aversion to using people’s given names (he calls his wife “Unit Two”). He also provides a fascinating reverse angle on the younger brother he left at the mercy of their nutty parents—the boy who would later change his name to Augusten Burroughs and write the bestselling memoir Running with Scissors.

Review: As somebody who has Asperger's, I could understand John's feelings of not feeling as though one quite fits in and needs to find something that they like. While at times the language was a little simplistic, it was good. Found it enjoyable and was quite amused by the names he gave his parents and younger brother.

Next up: Mistress of the Sun by Sandra Gulland.


11 / 50 books. 22% done!


3481 / 15000 pages. 23% done!
 
 
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27 April 2008 @ 10:12 pm
Title: If I Gained the World
Author: Linda Nichols
Genre: Fiction, Christian
# of Pages: 416
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: B+


Description: When the pain of loss shatters two people--one from the inside out and the other from the outside in--how do they find their way to faithfulness, grace, and love? Only over time and distance will they eventually discover that it is through turning to the One who is faithful, whose love never fails. Lenore and Daniel have a cozy home and a wonderful son, a mirror image of his father. Lenore loves her life and wants nothing to change--except for one thing. As innocent as it seems, her request is the beginning of the end, and their life together unravels. Lenore takes little Scottie and begins her quest for meaning, purpose, and a new start--as far away from those bittersweet memories as she can get.

Review: Overall, it was pretty good, for a Christian novel. And when I was able to get into it, I was pleasantly surprised at how good it was. While the book didn't have a typical storyline that Christian fiction tends to have for the most part, it did have a fairly typical ending to the book. Overall, it was quite enjoyable. I don't know if I will read it again, but it is one that I would consider reading again.

Up next: Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger's by John Elder Robison


10 / 50 books. 20% done!


3193 / 15000 pages. 21% done!
 
 
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30 March 2008 @ 08:39 pm
Title: The Outsiders
Author: S.E. Hinton
Genre: Young Adult
# of Pages: 192
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: B+

Description of the book: According to Ponyboy, there are two kinds of people in the world: greasers and socs. A soc (short for "social") has money, can get away with just about anything, and has an attitude longer than a limousine. A greaser, on the other hand, always lives on the outside and needs to watch his back. Ponyboy is a greaser, and he's always been proud of it, even willing to rumble against a gang of socs for the sake of his fellow greasers--until one terrible night when his friend Johnny kills a soc. The murder gets under Ponyboy's skin, causing his bifurcated world to crumble and teaching him that pain feels the same whether a soc or a greaser.

Review: I really liked the book and compared with The Catcher in the Rye, this one was much better. I found that this one was much more realistic than the world of Holden Caufield, who seemed to be forever whining and griping and complaining and wanting to bring others down as a result. I can definitely see why this book is a recommended read and would recommend it myself. While the book was fairly easy to read, the book was fairly complex and really good, especially if you consider it was written by a high school junior.

Up next: If I gained the world


9 / 50 books. 18% done!


2777 / 15000 pages. 19% done!

X-posted to a bunch of places, including my reading journal, bookjournaling.
 
 
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