Monday, January 31, 2011

Little Children by Tom Perroitta

The characters in this intelligent, absorbing tale of suburban angst are constrained and defined by their relationship to children. There's Sarah, an erstwhile bisexual feminist who finds herself an unhappy mother and wife to a branding consultant addicted to Internet porn. There's Todd, a handsome ex-jock and stay-at-home dad known to neighborhood housewives as the Prom King, who finds in house-husbandry and reveries about his teenage glory days a comforting alternative to his wife's demands that he pass the bar and get on with a law career. There's Mary Ann, an uptight supermom who schedules sex with her husband every Tuesday at nine and already has her well-drilled four-year-old on the inside track to Harvard. And there's Ronnie, a pedophile whose return from prison throws the school district into an uproar, and his mother, May, who still harbors hopes that her son will turn out well after all. In the midst of this universe of mild to fulminating family dysfunction, Sarah and Todd drift into an affair that recaptures the passion of adolescence, that fleeting minimal period of freedom and possibility between the dutiful rigidities of childhood and parenthood. ~ Publishers Weekly

I recommend this book, it was not your typical fairytale story.  Maybe not quite like real suburbia, but not that far off either.  You'll like it!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

double post

If you've read Skippy Dies here is the post to tell us all about it!
I didn't get around to reading it this month. I am in a weird reading place where I'm not sure what sort of book I'm in the mood for. Ya know? I will get around to reading it one day. Just not today!
I'm doubling up this post and revealing the book for February: Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen. I thought it was time for a classic and next month (March) we have our first non-fiction title! Might see a bit of  a trend....I actually have the next six months planned out attentively for our monthly reads. I'm a nerd I know. (check out our book of the month tab for past and future reads!) But please feel free to suggest anything you might want to read and/or discuss!! I'm always looking for new books!!!

Northanger Abbey:

During an eventful season at Bath, young, naïve Catherine Morland experiences the joys of fashionable society for the first time. She is delighted with her new acquaintances: flirtatious Isabella, who shares Catherine's love of Gothic romance and horror, and sophisticated Henry and Eleanor Tilney, who invite her to their father's mysterious house, Northanger Abbey. There, her imagination influenced by novels of sensation and intrigue, Catherine imagines terrible crimes committed by General Tilney. With its broad comedy and irrepressible heroine, this is the most youthful and and optimistic of Jane Austen's works.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

How to Train Your Dragon book one by Cressida Cowell

Chronicles the adventures and misadventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III as he tries to pass the important initiation test of his Viking clan, the Tribe of the Hairy Hooligans, by catching and training a dragon.

A recommendation! This book is totally cute!! love it!!  I'll be getting the other books in the series and saving them for my daughters! If you have a kid or kids in the age group 9-12 you must get this for them!! ;0)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Beauty by Robin McKinley

When the family business collapses, Beauty and her two sisters are forced to leave the city and begin a new life in the countryside. However, when their father accepts hospitality from the elusive and magical Beast, he is forced to make a terrible promise - to send one daughter to the Beast's castle, with no guarantee that she will be seen again. Beauty accepts the challenge, and there begins an extraordinary story of magic and love that overcomes all boundaries.

A classic love story. Where you learn once again that love is more then lust and magic and that it usually takes time for love to grow and in some cases fester. I hate shallow love stories and this is sort of shallow. Although it can be taken in a couple of ways. It's the same reason I hate Shrek. A princess can't be in love with an ugly Ogre. The only way they can be together is if she's just as ugly and horrid as he is.
Well, here McKinley has made Beauty plain in appearance. Which in any other story would be okay, but I sort of felt the point is that she is beautiful (hence Beauty and the Beast) and isn't expected to fall in love with a beast. Which is suppose to be a double lesson of the story good looking prince gets bewitched for being an ass and good looking girl figuring out that sometimes there is more then meets the eye (transformers!) So, both characters figure out they aren't as shallow after all.
In this version, after months of spending time in an enchanted castle, she becomes beautiful. Now here is where I'm not sure about stuff, because was she always beautiful just in denial? or Was she was beautiful in the eyes of the Beast therefore beautiful to the reader? or Was she physically transformed like the ugly duckling? The latter would really annoy me. So, if anyone has read or now wants to read this please let me know what you thought!
Okay now that I have that out of my system over all I really did enjoy this book. Because really deep down this story is about falling in love with a person's soul? personality? core? whatever you call it it's about falling in love with your best friend and that's where it gets a spot on my shelf as a keeper!
So, I recommend it to anyone who likes a good classic fantastical love story!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Lovely Bones by Alice Seabold

My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973. My murderer was a man from our neighborhood. My mother liked his border flowers, and my father talked to him once about fertilizer. This is Susie Salmon. Watching from heaven, Susie sees her happy, suburban family devastated by her death, isolated even from one another as they each try to cope with their terrible loss alone. Over the years, her friends and siblings grow up, fall in love, do all the things she never had the chance to do herself. But life is not quite finished with Susie yet ...

This story is told from the point of view of a murdered girl and it focus's on how her family deals with the unknown and the loss of a daughter and sister. It's can be a little awkward to read as it's one of those things that unless you've experienced it you can never really know what it's like. I also hope it is something I never ever have to experience. Even Susie, the girl who is dead, doesn't know what it's like to deal with it as she's just observing. Susie's loss is something else: of experiences, growing up, and family. Which is why when young people die it seems so much more a tragedy.
I do like the way the book is sort of choppy going over a long period of time. Time is a man made thing so we all like to assume that 'heaven' is timeless. And I think if you're to write a book told by a girl who is in heaven the way it's written fits the story. The only part I didn't like was when she posses her friends body. It was weird. A bonus of this book is it's short and could be read in a day!

Last Note: They made a movie of this about a year ago, I could look up exactly when, but to be honest I'm not bothered by this one. The book is something out of parents worst nightmares and I don't need to torture myself really. The only thing that would make me watch it is to find out how they put it to film because of how it's written.

Friday, January 7, 2011

January's Book of the Month!

Hey! Book for the month is Skippy Dies by Paul Murray
Ruprecht Van Doren is an overweight genius whose hobbies include very difficult maths and the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence. Daniel ‘Skippy’ Juster is his roommate. In the grand old Dublin institution that is Seabrook College for Boys, nobody pays either of them much attention. But when Skippy falls for Lori, the frisbee-playing Siren from the girls’ school next door, suddenly all kinds of people take an interest – including Carl, part-time drug-dealer and official school psychopath . . . A tragic comedy of epic sweep and dimension, Skippy Dies scours the corners of the human heart and wrings every drop of pathos, humour and hopelessness out of life, love, Robert Graves, mermaids, M-theory, and everything in between.

Hope everyone had a great holiday season and looking forward to reading with everyone this year!
Any books you want to read leave a comment!
Also look ahead in the tab Book of the Month!

Cupcakes at Carrington’s by Alexandra Brown {book review}

Every month a blog I follow hosts a book club, but the books chosen all have to do with food. Particularly baking. It’s very similar to ...