January 26th, 2010

Book

♥ Book #3 :: All together Dead ♥

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Title: All Together Dead
Author: Charlaine Harris
Copyright date: 2007
Publisher: Berkley Publishing Group
How many pages: 323 pgs
How long it took me to read: 5 days
Category: Fiction
I learned about this book from: Reading the other books in the series

This book was purchased at: Coles
This book is: a page turner
Other books by this/these author(s): Sookie Stackhouse series
Favorite characters: Sookie Stackhouse, Eric Northman, Sophie Anne Leclerq
When and Where the story takes place: Bon Temps, Louisiana, Shreveport, Renard Parish, Hot Shot, Rhodes

Plot in a nutshell: Louisiana cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse has her hands full with the shapeshifter Quinn, a possible new man in her life, and the upcoming vampire summit. With her power base weakened by hurricane damage to New Orleans, Vampire Queen Sophie-Anne is vulnerable to those hungry for a takeover. Sookie's job at the summit is to support Sophie- Anne. But she'll soon discover just how dangerous that job can be, as she is drawn further and further into the vampire world.
Main characters: Sookie Stackhouse
What I liked best: The way Charlaine added Hurricane Katrina in the story after it happened. The story started out with some Eric. The way Sookie thinks about Bill. "The Whore" nice spur of the moment nickname. lol. Vampire wedding. Total page turner.
What I liked least: Elmer for a woman's name. Claudine and Amelia don't get along anymore. Quinn prolonging talking to Sookie about his past.

Overall rating: Firstly, I'd like to say, this is one of my favorite covers in the series. The yellow brings attention to it, also Eric is on the cover. Aside from my love for Eric, this book was one of the best. I loved the way she told the tale of the Vampire convention. It was like what the world would be like if Vampires took over. Interesting. This book was definitely a page turner...
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Books 2 & 3

The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs

This one caught my eye on the library shelf simply because I am a knitter myself. This is definately a chick book. lol It's about a group of women who meet on Friday nights at the yarn store run by the main character. The story goes through about a year of their lives and documents the struggles of each person and how they come to see this group as a family. I enjoyed it. It's a quick read, but the ending comes a little out of left field. I may pick up her other book. Definately not a great work of fiction, but enjoyable none-the-less.

Convergence: Book one of The Blending by Sharon Greene

A fantasy series that looked interesting. I found them at my local used bookstore and picked them up, since I'm looking for a new series. It's interesting. Basically, there are five magical elements: earth, air, water, fire, and spirit. Groups of five people, called a Blending, are formed every 25 years to compete for the five-fold throne. However, the challenges are rigged in favor of a group already chosen by the existing powers. This book introduces the heroes and the struggles they go through before they become a Blending. I found it repetitive; Greene tries to tell everything from everyone's point of view. While each person has a slightly different perspective, hearing the same events five times gets old after a while. I'm reading the second one to see if it gets any better and we'll see what happens from there.
El Corazon

52. UFOs, JFK, and Elvis; 53. World Made By Hand; 54. Chuck Klosterman IV

UFOs, JFK, and Elvis: Conspiracies You Don't Have to Be Crazy to Believe
by Richard Belzer

Started: January 25, 2010
Finished: January 26, 2010

This is the worst book I've read so far this year. I wasn't expecting to learn anything new about JFK or UFO conspiracy theories, but I think Richard Belzer is a funny, cynical guy so I was expecting a humorous take on these subjects. Instead this was just a boring recap of the usual conspiracy theories. He tries to be funny on a very few occasions, but the few jokes fall flat. I didn't laugh once. I've seen Geocities web pages with better writing than this book. 217 pages. Grade: F
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World Made By Hand
by James Howard Kunstler

Started: January 25, 2010
Finished: January 26, 2010

This is another small town tries to live life after a nuclear war book, a la Alas Babylon. The story was pretty good, the writing fit the subject matter but wasn't anything special. All in all, a fun read but not an essential one. 317 pages. Grade: B+
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Chuck Klosterman IV: A Decade of Curious People and Dangerous Ideas
by Chuck Klosterman

Started: January 25, 2010
Finished: January 26, 2010

This is a collection of pretty entertaining already-published pieces of Klosterman's, mainly from Spin and Esquire, and one horrifically boring fictional short story at the very end. 356 pages. Grade: B
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Total # of Books Read in 2010: 54
Total # of Pages Read in 2010: 10,985

Total # of Non-Comic Books Read in 2010: 22
Total # of Non-Comic Book Pages Read in 2010: 6,984

Currently Reading: The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler; The Great Psychedelic Armadillo Picnic by Kinky Friedman; The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
El Corazon

55. The Great Psychedelic Armadillo Picnic; 56. Batman: The Killing Joke; 57. The Big Sleep

The Great Psychedelic Armadillo Picnic: A "Walk" in Austin
by Kinky Friedman

Started/Finished: January 26, 2010

Part of the Crown Journeys series where Crown Publishers got local celebrities to write tour guides/essays about different cities across the world. I'm not a big fan of Texas-based humor, so while I think Kinky Friedman is probably an entertaining man in person, I didn't care for the style of writing in this book. I did learn a few interesting things about Austin history, but the book in large part seemed to be more about Kinky Friedman name dropping than about being a tour of Austin. 140 pages. Grade: C
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Batman: The Killing Joke
by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland

Started/Finished: January 26, 2010

I had somehow never read this before. Absolutely loved it. The story is strong and the artwork is just phenomenal. 64 pages. Grade: A+
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The Big Sleep
by Raymond Chandler

Started: January 25, 2010
Finished: January 26, 2010

This is the one Chandler piece that I'd read a number of times before and it still holds up amazingly well. I just love how great a job Chandler does of conveying a sense of place. 1930s Los Angeles comes alive in his work. 176 pages. Grade: A+
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Total # of Books Read in 2010: 57
Total # of Pages Read in 2010: 11,365

Total # of Non-Comic Books Read in 2010: 24
Total # of Non-Comic Book Pages Read in 2010: 7,300

Currently Reading: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne; The Rolling Stone Interviews by Jann S. Wenner and Joe Levy; The Thirsty Muse by Tom Dardis
flower

Books 2-4

Title: Troubling a Star
Author: Madeleine L'Engle
Themes/Topics: End of Innocence, Greed, Love

I was sad to read this novel, as it was the last in the Austin family series. I truly fell in love with the characters, wholesome people of days gone by and sadly this novel didn't focus on the family nearly enough. The story-telling device was neat: from the beginning we know Vicki is stranded and in trouble, but we don't know how she got there. The novel was compelling, and I thought the material impressive for a read classified as "young adult" but I simply desired more tales of the Austin's and their life together.

Title: Still Life
Author: Joy Fielding
Themes/Topics: Suspense, Betrayal

I thought this novel was only ok. It was on the New York Times Bestseller list which is certainly not a measure of solid quality. I found the plot interesting, woman in coma, but it was much too predictable. I was compelled to read on because I wanted to see how it would end, but I was disappointed with the results. Had the author taken a chance it would have been much more interesting.

Title: That Old Cape Magic
Author: Richard Russo
Themes/Topics: Love, Personal Growth, Overcoming

I found it difficult to get into this novel but I believe that was only because I did in on audio over an extended period of time. The only other Russo work I have read was Empire Falls and this novel was similar in that there was no clear plot direction: just the story of people living, loving, and learning about themselves. I found these characters to be compelling and authentic and the story was believable and simple without being predictable. This was definitely my favorite of the three.