Book Stuff / Reviews

Catching Up

I may not have been writing much since the readathon in April but I sure as heck have been reading! It’s been a busy few months but here’s what I’ve been up to:

Been there, done that:

Fifty Shades of Grey – 3/5

An attractive, young billionaire meets an even younger college graduate and proceeds to spank her – a lot.

I caved. I feel slightly stupid for having done it but, stupid as it may be, while the writing is atrocious (it’s called a vagina… not “her sex”), it wasn’t horrible. It’s a bit like the Twilight train wreck: I know it’s not good for me but I can’t stop reading.

Remarkable Creatures – 2.94/5

A spinster moves to Lyme Regis, meets Mary Anning, and discovers a love of fossil hunting.

This was for a book club and got pretty blah reviews from everyone. Mary Anning’s life is super interesting (I hit up Google a lot) but Chevalier’s story was boring and her writing was a bit too flowery. I’d check out one of the many other Anning books.

The Giver – 4.13/5

In a society where everything is highly controlled Jonas is given the chance to experience what no one else can.

I’m sad I waited so long to read this but I wondered if I’d have appreciated its brilliance when I was 10 or 12 so I gave it to a 10 year old I know who loved it. Lowry’s writing is spot on and there’s just enough foreshadowing to keep you interested without feeling heavy handed.

The Fault of Our Stars – 4.31/5

Two teens with cancer in a support group and fall in love.

I haven’t laughed and cried so much since The Book Thief. Green gave his characters insightful but believable outlooks, took a fresh approach to childhood illness (allowing for some smart ass-ish morbidity), and turned out an amazing novel.

Snowflower and the Secret Fan – 3.63/5

When Snowflower and Lily are 7 they promise to support each other for the rest of their lives but are torn apart by a lifelong secret.

I’m officially glad I was born into the time and place I was. Life in China was TOUGH for young women and See does a great job of illustrating the various obstacles to the girls’ happiness although it does get a bit Dickens-ish by the end.

The Graveyard Book – 3.94/5

When his family is murdered a two year old wanders into a cemetery where he is protected and raised by ghosts.

People like Gaiman make me feel like an unimaginative boob – my mind just doesn’t work the way his does and I’m SO jealous. His villian is exceedingly wicked, the ghosts are bumbling but good natured, and Nobody Owens is the brave, inquisitive boy I’m hoping to raise.

Macbeth – 4.19/5

After hearing an unlikely prophecy Macbeth kills King Duncan for his throne and the entire court begins to unravel.

This is one of my favourites of Shakespeare plays, it’s just so creepy and dark! Maybe I sound morbid but realistically who doesn’t love a play that includes regicide, witches and revenge?

Up next:

Look Homeward, Angel by Thomas Wolfe

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

What have you been reading?

5 thoughts on “Catching Up

  1. Just finished the new Stephen King Dark Tower book, Wind through the Keyhole, which was okay. Also read a brilliant graphic novel called Habibi. I’m in the rare mood for a bit of good sci-fi next, and I’ve heard M. John Harrison’s Light is pretty mind-blowing. I’ll give that a shot.

  2. Sometimes I feel like I am the only one who didn’t like Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. People at the bookstore RAVE about it and when a customer asks me “What did you think?”, I can’t really say “Don’t waste your money…”

    When I read the blurb, I wrote out the whole story in my head and was really excited to read it but then (of course) it wasn’t the same story I thought it was going to be.

  3. I still haven’t read 50 Shades of Grey – but almost feel like I should so that I know what everyone is talking about! Perhaps this winter with a wine by the fire….you know – one of those stormy days where driving is out of the question! Mind you, being so behind on reading, I am only finally just reading Eat, Pray, Love!

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