November 3rd, 2010

  • maribou

Parisian Power Hotel Beaver Queen

The Hotel Under the Sand, by Kage Baker
Charming and playful and old-fashioned. But to be honest, I was disappointed - only because I'm used to falling in love with Kage Baker books (even the ones that I find flawed) and I never quite clicked with this one.... *wistful sigh*

The Town on Beaver Creek, by Michelle Slatalla
I thought this town-biography of Martin, Kentucky was fascinating, and I liked how the author was able to go into so much detail based on extensive interviewing - it was really like hearing old folks tell stories. But it was sometimes difficult to keep track of the many many people involved....

The Power Makers, by Maury Klein (complimentary copy)
The parts of this that were about HOW stuff worked, steam, electricity, infrastructure, trolleys, what have you - those parts were great. The endless detail about all the business dealings involved bored me, and made the book as a whole rather a slog.
(160/200, -27)

The Parisian Prodigal, by Alan Gordon
I read these books for the narrator's voices. I love me some Theo and some Claudia (and I think Helga has gotten pretty nifty and am kind of hoping she gets her own narrative strand eventually) and I don't really care about the clever plots or the historical accuracy or the cleverness of the overarching premise or anything but voice anymore.... that said, all those things are probably good too. And the books in this series are funny, did I mention? The first one is Thirteenth Night; I would start there.

The Next Queen of Heaven, by Gregory Maguire
I usually steer away from reviewing by comparison, but in this case it's what came to mind: I'm pretty sure only Gregory Maguire could write a Christmas story that reads as though Edward Abbey and Stephen MacAuley had gotten together to write a Mitford novel. Since I love Abbey and MacAuley and I quite like Jan Karon, it worked out really well for me. I guess the rest of you might like it if you like Christopher Lamb? Yeah.
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October Reads

78.  Hearts on a String by Kris Radish  This book has an interesting concept though not a realistic one. It is unrealistic to think that five women would spend four days together in a hotel room after only knowing each other for less than an hour. Each of the women have secrets of their own to tell which comes out during their time together. The ending of the book though is far fetched though the relationship aspect is realistic.
79.  Maggie by Charles Martin  This is an interesting book that I read for book club.  It describes one couple's life after the wife comes out of a coma that she was in after delivering their stillborn son.  The two of them are dealing with the possibility that they would not be able to have any children of their own which is hard in the town that they live in since their best friends are expecting another child.  The ending is unexpected and not what you would expect from Christian fiction.  The two of them are also dealing with the grief of losing their unborn son.
80.  Bulls Island by Dorothea Benton Frank  This book is about two young people who were engaged but due to circumstances in their lives separated.  J.D. Langley's family did not approve of his fiancee Betts McGee.  After she tragically loses her mother she moves to New York cutting off all contact from her family in Charleston, SC.  J.D. is stuck in a loveless marriage when circumstances bring the two together again with Betts keeping a huge secret from everyone.  This is a good beach read since it is set in a coastal town and the storyline is easy to follow.
81. Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver
82.  Heat Wave by Richard Castle 
83.  Cane River
by Lalita Tademy  This is a fictional account of the author's own family history.  She does a good job of showing how the conditions were for female African Americans during and after slavery in Louisiana.  It shows the different class systems that the African Americans had amongst themselves during this time period.  The freed blacks were at the top of the class system, the house slaves were in the middle and the field hands were at the bottom rung of the ladder.  The women in her family wanted their children to have lighter skin so that they could have a better life for their children and hopefully their children could pass for white.  The white women in their lives also were at the mercy of their husbands and male relatives.  She also demonstrates the prejudice that people had against people of different races being in a romantic relationship.  The book ends in the 1930s during the Jim Crow era where blacks were still seen as second class to whites.
84.  Have a Little Faith: The Story of a Last Request  by Mitch Albom  This is the story of an eighty two year old rabbi from Mitch's old synagogue making a last request of him, to deliver his eulogy at his funeral.  In order to prepare for his eulogy he gets to know the rabbi better and in the process meets an African American Christian pastor who preaches to the poor and homeless.  Both men teach him a lot about faith and God.  The two men are leaders in two different faiths and minister to those from different socioeconomic backgrounds but their spiritual needs are the same.  Mitch gets to know more about the homeless in his current hometown through Pastor Henry Covington's ministry.
yomiko readman

October 2010 Reading!

October Reading:

69. Torchwood: Pack Animals, by Peter Anghelides (251 pages)
I really liked this one, in that it was kind of a take on RPG card games gone real. Fun read.

70. Even Hand, by Jim Butcher (34 pages)
From Marcone's POV. Fun short story.

71. Shifting Star, by Vicki Pettersson (40 pages)
Nice Zodiac short story. Interesting POV.

72. The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekov (49 pages)
I found it absolutely hysterical, and I understand that's how Chekov meant it to be taken, but most people find it sad.

73. Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, by William Shakespeare (122 pages)
I really liked this, and David Tennant's role in the film is perfect.

October book pages: 496

Total book pages: 22,485

Progress: 73/100


49. Doctor Horrible, by Zack Whedon, Eric Canete, Joelle Jones, and Jim Rugg (80 pages)

October comic book/manga pages: 80

Total comic book/manga pages: 9,159

Progress: 49/50

January 2010 Reading
February 2010 Reading
March 2010 Reading
April 2010 Reading
May 2010 Reading
June 2010 Reading
July 2010 Reading
August 2010 Reading
September 2010 Reading

Book 53 - 57

Book 53: All Together Dead - Charlaine Harris
Genre: Paranormal
Plot: Sookie Stackhouse goes to the Vampire Summit.
My thoughts: Another excellent book. It was nice to see the Bellboy re-appear.
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

* ~ * ~ *

Book 54: From Dead to Worse - Charlaine Harris
Genre: Paranormal
Plot: Sookie discovers the truth about her heritage and the Vampire King of Nevada tries to take over Louisiana
My thoughts: The words of Eric are so true "I regret Sophie-Anne". Definitely an interesting twist on the whole Quinn situation.
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

* ~ * ~ *

Book 55: Dead and Gone - Charlaine Harris
Genre: Paranormal
Plot: The Shifters have their own Great Revelation and the Fairies are at war. Of course Sookie is right in the middle...
My thoughts: I never realised I was shipping a particular pairing until...well, yes, if you've read the book you know EXACTLY what I am talking about.
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

* ~ * ~ *

Book 56: Blood Rites - Jim Butcher
Genre: Paranormal?
Plot: Thomas asks Dresden to take on the case of a friend, Arturo Genosa, a maker of films who has just broken away from his studio to start his own. An entropy curse seems to be followign him about, though, which makes filming with Arturo rather deadly...
My thoughts: I was right! I was right! I was right! (about Thomas).
Rating: 4.5 stars (out of 5)

* ~ * ~ *

Book 57: Dead Beat - Jim Butcher
Genre: Paranormal
Plot: It's nearly Halloween and some Necromancers have a plan. Of course, there is only one man who has a chance of stopping them...or is there?
My thoughts: I love the whole Lasciel angle. Fallen angels have always fascinated me and Mab is, as always, properly terrifying. However, my favourite character has now become Mouse. Damn that dog kicks ass.
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

* ~ * ~ *

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  • blinger

Book 23 - 2010

Book 23: My Favorite Earthling by Susan Grant – 378 pages

Description from Amazon:
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So this is Your Planet or Mine?’s sequel. It’s set not long after its predecessor and picks up where the story left off. Excluding the things about its predecessor that I didn’t like (which had to be included seeing as the world had already been established), this book is almost as much a ball as the first one. Jared, the older brother of Your Planet or Mine?’s Jana, finds himself married to the Goddess Queen of the galaxy in order to bring peace, the problem being that the whole thing is based on a pretence, a few gung-ho remarks, and a misunderstanding. Jared and Keira’s chemistry makes up for their unwillingness, and as of any book of this nature, it’s that that changes everything. A conspiracy threatens to push the pair apart, and if successful, kill Jared. I really liked Jared, he was a decent bloke (when aren’t they in romance novels?), and he handled his situation with aplomb. Keira starts off annoying but she grows on you, and as her story comes to light, it’s hard not to sympathise with her. The story also felt as if it had a larger, deeper plot, and indeed the events within it go on to effect the second trilogy based around the same universe (Tales from the Borderlands) I have since discovered. Even so, something about this one lacked the pull of its predecessor. I’m not exactly sure what though, so I can’t really offer any valuable criticisms. Still, it didn’t fail to put me off Susan Grant, so needless to say, it definitely has its merits.

23 / 50 books. 46% done!

7724 / 15000 pages. 51% done!

My catch up list has lengthened to being 5 books behind...I'm really starting to think that I'm not going to catch up till my Christmas holidays start now...sigh!

Currently reading:
- Angels and Demons
by Dan Brown – 620 pages
- The Glass Castle
by Jeannette Walls – 341 pages
- Contact
by Susan Grant – 369 pages

And coming up:
- She’s Such a Geek: Women write about Science, Technology & other nerdy stuff
edited by Annalee Newitz and Charlie Anders – 223 pages
- Nobody’s Prize
by Esther Friesner – 306 pages
- A Series of Unfortunate Events: Book the Second: The Reptile Room
by Lemony Snicket – 190 pages