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May 2008 Book Challenge

post #1 of 135
Thread Starter 
Happy Beltane!
Merry May Day!
Feliz May 1st!

Here's our new month's thread, up and running. The rules are simple. Post the books you read throughout the month with a quick whether or not you liked it and/or you'd recommend it.

Some of us are number our books because we've set goals for the year, but that's by no means a requirement for jumping into the thread. Its mostly about sharing the good books we've read and steering away from the bad ones.

So, with that, avante and a happy reading May to everyone!



January's thread is HERE
February's thread is HERE
March's thread is HERE
April's thread is HERE
post #2 of 135
#31 Writing Motherhood: Tapping Into Your Creativity as a Mother and a Writer by Lisa Garrigues

This book has a lot of great ideas for writing prompts. I was expecting more practical information about balancing motherhood and a writing life--there was some, just not a lot. But this book would be worth owning for all the great prompts. You would never be able to say "I don't know what to write about!"

If you're looking for a book with more practical advice for moms about launching a writing career, check out Writer Mama: How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids.
post #3 of 135
Subbing.

I'm sloughing through a not too great book right now so it might be a few days for me to get though it.

Snozz - have you read Pen on Fire - that's a good one for writing moms too.
post #4 of 135
#54 Remembering the Bones by Frances Itani

Interesting. Canadian woman (Georgie), born on same date as Queen Elizabeth, is invited to her (their) 80th birthday party at Buckingham Palace. Georgie crashes her car into a ravine on the way to the airport to go to the party. Entire story (after first 8 pages) are Georgie's thoughts as she lies, severely injured, in the ravine.
post #5 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by snozzberry View Post
#31 Writing Motherhood: Tapping Into Your Creativity as a Mother and a Writer by Lisa Garrigues

This book has a lot of great ideas for writing prompts. I was expecting more practical information about balancing motherhood and a writing life--there was some, just not a lot. But this book would be worth owning for all the great prompts. You would never be able to say "I don't know what to write about!"
I was just thinking that I could use some writing prompts... hmm -- there's really no way to say that without sounding sarcastic, but I'm serious.
post #6 of 135
Subbing...just got home from the library.
post #7 of 135
I always start over with numbers for each month.

1.) Dervishes by Beth Helms

I found myself want to get to the end of this book -- not because I enjoyed it but simply to finish it. I could not connect with the characters. I also found the end to be lacking - I felt like it left the plot hanging. Or maybe I missed something? Someone enlighten me.

Listening to Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin
post #8 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by cathe View Post
Snozz - have you read Pen on Fire - that's a good one for writing moms too.
It's on my bookshelf but I haven't read it yet. : I'll have to check it out soon!

#32 Writer Mama: How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids by Christina Katz

I'll definitely be purchasing a copy of this book to keep. The advice for starting a freelance writing career is straightforward and practical, especially how to start off small and work your way up to bigger publications. And by doing just the first few exercises in the book, I got a ton of ideas for articles I could write.

If you're interested in writing fiction, some of the advice will be helpful to you, but in general the focus was on nonfiction freelance writing for magazines, newspapers, and so on.
post #9 of 135
"Maynard and Jennica" by Rudolph Delson

About an eccentric filmmaker/musician who meets a lonely Californian woman in NYC. Clever writing style with the story being told by a variety of narrators from the main characters themselves, family members, and other random people. The only thing was I found it hard to get into because it was kind of confusing and just seemed to be more of the same - the writing was very good though so it wasn't bad enough to give up on. I finally got more into it about the last quarter.
post #10 of 135
#14. The Amber Spyglass (Pullman)
Loved the series, might even read it again sometime since I bought the books. Now I'm going to start Outlander and see how I like it. . .along with (still trudging through) Prayer for Owen Meanie

2008 Book Challenge: #1. Tuesdays with Morrie (Albom); #2. Searching for the Sound My life with the Grateful Dead (Lesh); #3. Fastfood Nation (Schlosser); #4. Along Came a Spider (Patterson) #5. Divine Secrets of the YaYa Sisterhood (Wells); #6. The Thirteenth Tale (Setterfield) #7. The Poisonwood Bible (Kingsolver); #8. Twilight (Meyer); #9. New Moon (Meyer); #10. Eclipse (Meyer); #11. Eat, Pray, Love (Gilbert); #12. The Golden Compass (Pullman); #13: The Subtle Knife (Pullman)
post #11 of 135
#16 The Big Nap, Ayelet Waldman

Quote:
Juliet Applebaum, L.A. public defender turned stay-at-home mom, returns for a second amusing but poignant adventure mixing child-rearing and sleuthing. Four-month-old Isaac isn't sleeping much, and neither is his mother, while dad is busy getting the pilot for a new TV series ready. A chance encounter with a Hasidic storekeeper, Nettie Tannenbaum, brings Juliet temporary relief, when Nettie recommends her niece, Fraydle Finkelstein, as a babysitter. Fraydle works wonders with Isaac and three-year-old Ruby, but next day goes missing.
This is a light series of mysteries, but I love them. The heroine, Juliet, somehow manages to pull off mommy-ing with solving mysteries. I really enjoyed the contrast between a Hasidic sect and secular Judaism that was present in this mystery.

#1-Garden of Beasts, #2-Passporter Guide to WDW, #3-Skylight Confessions, #4 - The Secret, #5 - The Kite Runner, #6 - Gone, #7 - Hidden Mickeys, #8 - Into Thin Air, #9 - Wolf Point, #10 - Ocean Breezes, #11 - Harmony Guide to Cables and Aran, #12 - East, #13 - Getting Started Knitting Socks, #14 - Keeping Faith, #15 - The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight, #16 The Big Nap
post #12 of 135
#33 The Off Season by Catherine Murdock

I liked this sequel better than The Dairy Queen because the action picked up a lot faster. It's easy to root for this honest, hard-working girl who just so happens to be a linebacker. And even though the plot was a little more heavy than the first book, I think it was handled in a much more balanced way that left me feeling hopeful at the end. I also liked that certain things weren't given a Hollywood ending.
post #13 of 135
treemom2: Just beware that if you get sucked into the Outlander series, it's hard to get out again, LOL. I'm on the fourth book, so that's like 2,500 pages of Claire and Jamie already, and after 250 pages of it I had to take a little break. But I know I will have to finish it AND read the fifth and sixth books!
post #14 of 135
"Caspian Rain" by Gina B. Nahai

Sad book about a the daughter of Iranian Jews - the mother a lower class and father upper class who is in love with a Muslim women.
post #15 of 135
but getting sucked into the lives of Jamie and Claire are the best things that have ever happened to me, fictionally, lol!
post #16 of 135
#6 - A Box of Matches by Nicholson Baker

The musings of a guy named Emmett who has taken to getting up very early, lighting a fire, and typing random half-awake thoughts on his laptop. It was kind of boring, because it had no plot and nothing happened, but kind of interesting, because it was written by Nicholson Baker and he always has something interesting to say. I particularly liked Emmett's fantasy of driving a speedboat off the edge of the earth.
post #17 of 135
#55 Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
Interesting -- sort of a collection of short stories -- but the same person, Olive Kitteridge, appears in all of them, at various points in her own life, whether as the/a main character, or someone briefly glimpsed and discussed in the audience at a play.

#56 Mudbound by Hilary Jordan
Wow -- this was a pretty intense one. Set in the Jim Crow south after WWII. Main characters are two white brothers (the younger has just returned from the war, the older owns a farm and lives there with his wife), their father, the wife, a black couple who are their tenants on the farm and their son who has just returned from the war. Each chapter is told by one of these characters.
post #18 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daffodil View Post
#6 - A Box of Matches by Nicholson Baker

The musings of a guy named Emmett who has taken to getting up very early, lighting a fire, and typing random half-awake thoughts on his laptop. It was kind of boring, because it had no plot and nothing happened, but kind of interesting, because it was written by Nicholson Baker and he always has something interesting to say. I particularly liked Emmett's fantasy of driving a speedboat off the edge of the earth.
Have any of Nicholson Baker's books had a plot?
post #19 of 135
#2. Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Really enjoyed this book. I was not familiar with the legend it was based on but I still found it a fascinating story.
post #20 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by nancy926 View Post
Have any of Nicholson Baker's books had a plot?
Well, I guess the The Fermata did, sort of, but mostly no, so I suppose I shouldn't actually blame the boringness of this one on the lack of plot.
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