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July 2008 Book Challenge - Page 7

post #121 of 196
#29 Into the Wild by John Krakauer

I'm pretty sure everyone will know what this one is about. Young man Chris McCandless leaves his wealthy family in Virginia after graduating college to wander the US and ends up Alaska. He lives off the land there for a few months, but in the fall some moose hunters find him dead of starvation.

I saw the movie and wanted to know more about him, so decided to read the book. The book I felt didnt really shed any more light on the story than the movie did actually. Although, it was interesting to find out what the older man who wanted to adopt McCandless did with his life after meeting him. And some of the background on his Alaska travels was interesting too. I found the tangential stories of Kraukauer's life and other wanderers like McCandless a little beside the point. Quick read though. I'm ambivalent about it, I cant really recommend it but it didn't suck.....
post #122 of 196
"Island of Lost Girls" by Jennifer McMahon

This was good. A 7-year-old girl disappears witnessed by a young women who's childhood friend also disappeared many years ago. She tries to solve this one.
post #123 of 196
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kofduke View Post
#24 - Devil in the White City, Larson



This was a really, really interesting read -- it seems like it should be historical fiction, but it is a true account of the construction of the world's fair. The book is filled with local color and relates both biographies in an interesting and readable way.


#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, #17 - Grave of God's Daughter, #18 - Daddy's Girl, #19 - Behind the Scenes at the Museum, #20 - America, #21 - The Little Friend, #22 - Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid, #23 - Candyfreak, #24 - Devil in the White City
Oh, I loved that book ... now I'm going to have to see if I can reread it before my classes start next month ... hmmmmm ...
post #124 of 196
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by fremontmama View Post
#29 Into the Wild by John Krakauer

I'm pretty sure everyone will know what this one is about. Young man Chris McCandless leaves his wealthy family in Virginia after graduating college to wander the US and ends up Alaska. He lives off the land there for a few months, but in the fall some moose hunters find him dead of starvation.

I saw the movie and wanted to know more about him, so decided to read the book. The book I felt didnt really shed any more light on the story than the movie did actually. Although, it was interesting to find out what the older man who wanted to adopt McCandless did with his life after meeting him. And some of the background on his Alaska travels was interesting too. I found the tangential stories of Kraukauer's life and other wanderers like McCandless a little beside the point. Quick read though. I'm ambivalent about it, I cant really recommend it but it didn't suck.....
Yeah, I listened to the audiobook a couple of years ago and I'm still not quite sure what to make of McCandless. He's either a folk-hero ... or a dumbass, I'm not sure which though.

ETA: I'm also not sure what to do with Krakauer himself after the hatchet-job he did of my Church in Under the Banner of Heaven which is full of innacurracies, half-truths and things taken out of context. I'm not defending what the two brothers did, mind you, but what they did was an isolated event and not indicative of the Church I belong to.

Plus there are all the climbers (who were on Mount Everest at the time) that have refuted and disavowed and flat out rejected Krakauer's description of events in Into Thin Air ... so ... I'm not sure what to do with his books.
post #125 of 196
#36: Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer
#37: New Moon, by Stephenie Meyer


I believed the hype, and was disappointed. I thought these books read like bad soap operas, or maybe like poorly written fan fiction for a non-existent TV series. No characterization, forced plot, and none of the travails, misadventures, and heartache did anything for me. The author seems to have attended the "Tell Instead of Show" school of writing, and if I read about Edward's "angel face" one more time, I might have lost it.

But, you know, I don't feel strongly or anything....

(I read the second book after NOT liking the first book because 1) I bought them at the same time on Overstock and 2) Both I and my younger DD were feeling punky yesterday, so we spent most of the day in bed and I needed something to read that wouldn't require much brainpower.)
post #126 of 196
Wild about Books by Judy Sierra, illustrated by Marc Brown

dd and i just read this at the library. the bookmobile goes to the zoo and the animals get hooked on reading, become authors, start their own "zoobrary". the animals included are diverse (bandicoot! wombat!). a 2004 book but i had never seen it. clever rhymes and beautiful pictures. i highly recommend it.
post #127 of 196
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kangamitroo View Post
Wild about Books by Judy Sierra, illustrated by Marc Brown

dd and i just read this at the library. the bookmobile goes to the zoo and the animals get hooked on reading, become authors, start their own "zoobrary". the animals included are diverse (bandicoot! wombat!). a 2004 book but i had never seen it. clever rhymes and beautiful pictures. i highly recommend it.
DS loves books with animals and our local library has this one. When we go to the library tomorrow, I'll have to pick it up!
post #128 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewCrunchyDaddy View Post
Yeah, I listened to the audiobook a couple of years ago and I'm still not quite sure what to make of McCandless. He's either a folk-hero ... or a dumbass, I'm not sure which though.

ETA: I'm also not sure what to do with Krakauer himself after the hatchet-job he did of my Church in Under the Banner of Heaven which is full of innacurracies, half-truths and things taken out of context. I'm not defending what the two brothers did, mind you, but what they did was an isolated event and not indicative of the Church I belong to.

Plus there are all the climbers (who were on Mount Everest at the time) that have refuted and disavowed and flat out rejected Krakauer's description of events in Into Thin Air ... so ... I'm not sure what to do with his books.
Yeah, I haven't decided how I feel about McCandless either. And Krakauer, him either I remember there being controversy about the Into Thin Air book and I thought it was weird to interject so much of his own story into the McCandless story. FWIW though, I didnt take Under The Banner of Heaven as a treatise on your average Mormom church-goer, I put it in the same sort of sensationalist category as Into Thin Air, and I felt like he was speaking specifically to radical fundamentalist groups in that book. YKIM?

Funny, for a guy that I'm not sure how I feel about his books, he has managed to get me to read said books.
post #129 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by nancy926 View Post
#36: Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer
#37: New Moon, by Stephenie Meyer


I believed the hype, and was disappointed. I thought these books read like bad soap operas, or maybe like poorly written fan fiction for a non-existent TV series. No characterization, forced plot, and none of the travails, misadventures, and heartache did anything for me. The author seems to have attended the "Tell Instead of Show" school of writing, and if I read about Edward's "angel face" one more time, I might have lost it.

But, you know, I don't feel strongly or anything....

(I read the second book after NOT liking the first book because 1) I bought them at the same time on Overstock and 2) Both I and my younger DD were feeling punky yesterday, so we spent most of the day in bed and I needed something to read that wouldn't require much brainpower.)
I thought I was the only one that felt that way about her books (though I only read the first one and felt no compuction to read on - luckily I went the library route).
post #130 of 196
#24 Bread Alone by Judith R. Hendricks
Someone else read this book this month so I picked it up when I was waiting on other stuff on hold. Its about a housewife going through a divorce and using her love of baking bread to kinda get her life back. It was very cozy and didn't take too long to read. It also had recipes in it if you are into that sort of thing.
post #131 of 196
Black Swan Green by David Mitchell
I'd feel comfortable recommending this book to anyone. I enjoyed it very much. Sniped this summary from Amazon:
Quote:
Thirteen chapters provide a monthly snapshot of Jason Taylor's life in small-town England from January 1982 to January 1983. Whether the 13-year-old narrator is battling his stammer or trying to navigate the social hierarchy of his schoolmates or watching the slow disintegration of his parents' marriage, he relates his story in a voice that is achingly true to life. Each chapter becomes a skillfully drawn creation that can stand on its own, but is subtly interwoven with the others. While readers may not see the connectedness in the first two thirds of the book, the final three sections skillfully bring the threads together. The author does not pull any punches when it comes to the casual cruelty that adolescent boys can inflict on one another, but it is this very brutality that underscores the sweetness of which they are also capable. With its British slang and complex twists and turns, this title is not a selection for reluctant readers, but teens who enjoy multifaceted coming-of-age stories will be richly rewarded. The chapter entitled Rocks, which centers around the British conflict in the Falkland Islands in May 1982, is especially compelling as Jason and his peers deal with the death of one of their own. Mitchell has been hailed as one of the great new authors of the 21st century; with Black Swan Green, he shows again how the best books challenge readers' complacency.
post #132 of 196
"The PIg DId It" by Joseph Caldwell

Never really got into this. About a lovesick AMerican guy who goes to stay with his aunt in Ireland and gets caught up in a mystery. Some funny stuff but just didn't grab me.
post #133 of 196
67. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

I really liked it. I'm going to save the next 3 books in the series for my vacation, so I have some light reading to take with me. I don't really get why some of the reviews on Amazon and elsewhere call Bella a whiney brat - she does great in school, cleans the house without being asked, cooks dinner for her father every single night, likes to spend her free time reading/visiting bookstores, and did something pretty brave and selfless for her mother at the end of the story. She sounds like she would make a pretty good kid in real life.

Not as good as JK Rowling (there's no comparison) but it's nice to have something fun to read every once in awhile. There is ONE comparison I can make to Harry Potter - the guy who plays Cedric Diggory is playing Edward in the Twilight movie that's coming out.
post #134 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaliki_kila View Post
There is ONE comparison I can make to Harry Potter - the guy who plays Cedric Diggory is playing Edward in the Twilight movie that's coming out.
There making a movie? No mortal man can play the role of Edward!

#31 Fluke, or I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings – A quick read with some funny parts, but nothing really special. Okay for a light vacation book, especially if you are going to the ocean.

#32 Rebel Angels (audio) – Better plot development than the first book, but still somehow annoying. Maybe it’s the characters; I don’t really like any of them.
post #135 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jenifer76 View Post
Back to Wando Passo by David Payne

A great story idea but the writing was a failure. . The premise is a one-hit wonder rock star visits his estranged wife at her family's estate in South Carolina. Along with the tension between husband and wife, he stumbles across artifacts from the home's early years which leads to a supernatural journey. I couldn't finish it in its entirety -- it was that dreadful. The book should be entered in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest. However, it does have a ton of good press so I might be off my rocker.
Interesting. I read this when it first came out and absolutely loved it. (more than two years ago now). I just chose it for our book club to read in August... yikes. Hope my memory of it is accurate! I think at least one person already finished it and enjoyed it, at least.....
post #136 of 196
#92 Palace Council by Stephen L. Carter
I like his books. This one is set over a 20 year period, give or take a few years, starting in 1952. Lots of politics.
One thing about this book (and I think it's unusual for me to think about a book this critically (in the neutral sense of the word) so it must have been a big deal) is that he kept referencing the fact that it was taken place in the past ("Harlem in those days" kind of things) -- maybe because this is his first place that doesn't take place "today"?
I'm writing this quickly as DH needs the computer, so I may not be making any sense at all.....

#93 The Last Days of Dogtown by Anita Diamant
for book club tomorrow night. rich in characters. by the author of The Red Tent. Set in a tiny town in Massachusetts in the early 1800s.
post #137 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by nancy926 View Post
#36: Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer
#37: New Moon, by Stephenie Meyer


I believed the hype, and was disappointed. I thought these books read like bad soap operas, or maybe like poorly written fan fiction for a non-existent TV series. No characterization, forced plot, and none of the travails, misadventures, and heartache did anything for me. The author seems to have attended the "Tell Instead of Show" school of writing, and if I read about Edward's "angel face" one more time, I might have lost it.

But, you know, I don't feel strongly or anything....

(I read the second book after NOT liking the first book because 1) I bought them at the same time on Overstock and 2) Both I and my younger DD were feeling punky yesterday, so we spent most of the day in bed and I needed something to read that wouldn't require much brainpower.)


"bad soap opera" is redundant.

Yes, they're soap operas, and not well-written. BUT I had to keep plowing through them. Then I realized--it's the sexual tension. :

I think I'll skip reading the 4th book. The story should have been over by the end of the 3rd book--I couldn't believe that it wasn't.
post #138 of 196
The White

About a woman who is kidnapped by Indians and chooses to live among them rather then leave. Supposedly based on a true story. It is about finding what makes you happy and content and what she also thought was best for her family. If you read it, tell me if you thought she was just running away from the horrible thing that happened to her or if she was staying where she thought was really the better place?
post #139 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
"bad soap opera" is redundant.

Yes, they're soap operas, and not well-written. BUT I had to keep plowing through them. Then I realized--it's the sexual tension. :

I think I'll skip reading the 4th book. The story should have been over by the end of the 3rd book--I couldn't believe that it wasn't.
AHHHHHHHHHHH! How can you skip 700 pages of more gripping sexual tension?!

:

My husband doesn't even know how much he's looking forward to this book.

That is all.
post #140 of 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by chellemarie View Post
AHHHHHHHHHHH! How can you skip 700 pages of more gripping sexual tension?!

:

My husband doesn't even know how much he's looking forward to this book.

That is all.


Mine either!!!
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