Febraury 2009 Book Challenge - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-07-2009, 02:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#11 Graceling
Author: Kristin Cashore
Category: Fiction, Young Adult
Rating: 5/5
Summary: Katsa is Graced with the ability to kill, which her uncle the king exploits for his own gain. She has no friends—how could a wild, predatory animal have friends? Then one day, she meets another Graceling who not only challenges her idea of friendship but her idea of herself. And it just so happens he’s pretty darn cute, to boot.

Review: OhmygoshIlovedthisbooksooomuch. I’ll try to stop gushing and write a coherent review, but…sigh. I was sad to let this one go.

Just a few of the things I loved loved loved:
  • The world—I always get a little nervous when I start a fantasy book because the author can get so wrapped up in naming things and creating their own little world that it takes away from the story of the characters and their struggles. Not so with this book. The world is there, but you aren’t hit over the head with it. So the result is that it feels real. Within the first few pages, I felt like I was there.
  • The strong main character—Actually, the strong female main character. And I’m not talking the ability to kill. Katsa is a girl who knows what she wants and isn’t going to let other people tell her how to live her life.
  • The romance—Yum.
I can’t wait for the next in this series!
I'll hafta look this one up! (In all my copious amounts of spare time of course )

"A mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge." - Tyrion Lannister

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Old 02-07-2009, 02:47 PM
 
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#11 Graceling
Author: Kristin Cashore
Category: Fiction, Young Adult
Rating: 5/5
Summary: Katsa is Graced with the ability to kill, which her uncle the king exploits for his own gain. She has no friends—how could a wild, predatory animal have friends? Then one day, she meets another Graceling who not only challenges her idea of friendship but her idea of herself. And it just so happens he’s pretty darn cute, to boot.

Review: OhmygoshIlovedthisbooksooomuch. I’ll try to stop gushing and write a coherent review, but…sigh. I was sad to let this one go.

Just a few of the things I loved loved loved:
  • The world—I always get a little nervous when I start a fantasy book because the author can get so wrapped up in naming things and creating their own little world that it takes away from the story of the characters and their struggles. Not so with this book. The world is there, but you aren’t hit over the head with it. So the result is that it feels real. Within the first few pages, I felt like I was there.
  • The strong main character—Actually, the strong female main character. And I’m not talking the ability to kill. Katsa is a girl who knows what she wants and isn’t going to let other people tell her how to live her life.
  • The romance—Yum.
I can’t wait for the next in this series!
Oooh, I've been on the holds list at the library for weeks for this one, and now I can't WAIT until it's my turn!!!

Chessa , mama to Silas T (6/06) , wife to Chad . Welcome August Emerson! 2/8/10
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Old 02-07-2009, 03:40 PM
 
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(I've already lost count of what number book I am on)
summary: two story lines 1. the story of King Jayavarman in 12th century cambodia and 2. The story of the individuals that find gold sheets of a book written by Jayavarman and the hope they have for the impact that book will have on them trying to rebuild cambodia after the Khmer Rouge and those individuals struggle with both what they have done and what they have suffered during the last 30 years of war in that country.
Review: I loved it. I loved learning about a culture of which I know almost nothing. I enjoyed the complexity of the characters as well as the complexity of the situation in cambodia. I recommend this book.
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Old 02-07-2009, 03:47 PM
 
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#9 - Things I've Been Silent About by Azar Nafisi.

This is a new book of memoirs by the author of Reading Lolita in Tehran, which I had read and enjoyed, although I found the personal aspect of it more interesting to me than the literary discussions.

I really, really liked this one. She writes about her upbringing in Iran, with a difficult mother and a charming, if sometimes unfaithful father, who divorced late in life. At the outset she remarks that most men cheat on their wives to have mistresses, whereas her father cheated on her mother to have a happy life...

Nafisi's father was the mayor of Iran for a time, and her mother was a parliamentarian, all pre-Revolution. I was fascinated to read more about Iranian history and politics, having got some tasters from Lolita, Persepolis, and a tv documentary I saw recently. It seems terribly sad that leftists had so many hopes of the revolution, and were then faced with something newer and more terrible than they could have imagined - and that this was even the case for many Islamic fundamentalists, who had different visions than Khomeini of what the new state should look like.

Great book!
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:33 PM
 
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Touching Snow by M. Sindy Felin

This was just a heartbreaking book about a Haitian family in the US whose stepfather "the daddy" beats them horribly and the guilt one sister has little her sister take her beatings sometimes . . . The mother keeps kicking out the stepfather, he even goes to jail but he always comes back. Excellent book.

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-07-2009, 09:22 PM
 
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Touching Snow by M. Sindy Felin

This was just a heartbreaking book about a Haitian family in the US whose stepfather "the daddy" beats them horribly and the guilt one sister has little her sister take her beatings sometimes . . . The mother keeps kicking out the stepfather, he even goes to jail but he always comes back. Excellent book.
Oh, I don't think I could read this no matter how good it is. I just can't handle details about abuse.
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Old 02-08-2009, 12:58 AM
 
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#11 Graceling
Author: Kristin Cashore
Category: Fiction, Young Adult
Rating: 5/5
Summary: Katsa is Graced with the ability to kill, which her uncle the king exploits for his own gain. She has no friends—how could a wild, predatory animal have friends? Then one day, she meets another Graceling who not only challenges her idea of friendship but her idea of herself. And it just so happens he’s pretty darn cute, to boot.

Review: OhmygoshIlovedthisbooksooomuch. I’ll try to stop gushing and write a coherent review, but…sigh. I was sad to let this one go.

Just a few of the things I loved loved loved:
  • The world—I always get a little nervous when I start a fantasy book because the author can get so wrapped up in naming things and creating their own little world that it takes away from the story of the characters and their struggles. Not so with this book. The world is there, but you aren’t hit over the head with it. So the result is that it feels real. Within the first few pages, I felt like I was there.
  • The strong main character—Actually, the strong female main character. And I’m not talking the ability to kill. Katsa is a girl who knows what she wants and isn’t going to let other people tell her how to live her life.
  • The romance—Yum.
I can’t wait for the next in this series!
Okay, Snozz, even though it doesn't look exactly like something I'd usually pick up, you've convinced me to try it. I'm #3 in the holds list.
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Old 02-08-2009, 03:57 PM
 
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Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

The first half of the book has two stories going -- one during WWII when a Jewish family is France is rounded up as part of Vel' d'Hiv. The 10 year old girl, locks her brother in a cupboard to hide him thinking she'll be back to let him out soon but the family is taken to a concentration camp. The second story is modern day, an American journalist living in Paris is asked to do a story on Vel' d'Hiv and finds out the apartment she's moving in to that belonged to her husband's family was the one where the family had been taken from during the way. The second half is her trying to find the (now grown up) girl. I hadn't heard of Vel' d'Hiv before. How horrible.

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:33 PM
 
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Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

The first half of the book has two stories going -- one during WWII when a Jewish family is France is rounded up as part of Vel' d'Hiv. The 10 year old girl, locks her brother in a cupboard to hide him thinking she'll be back to let him out soon but the family is taken to a concentration camp. The second story is modern day, an American journalist living in Paris is asked to do a story on Vel' d'Hiv and finds out the apartment she's moving in to that belonged to her husband's family was the one where the family had been taken from during the way. The second half is her trying to find the (now grown up) girl. I hadn't heard of Vel' d'Hiv before. How horrible.
Did you enjoy the book (well as much as you can given the topic)?

Jen, Mom to DS (8) , DD (5) & Alli
(1-04) (8-09)
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:46 PM
 
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#21 The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart

Fun. How many people here have read this by now?
I loved all the linguistic stuff.

(Supposed to be playing cards with DH & DD)
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:06 AM
 
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Graceling sounds like fun. I've seen it around... I'll add it to the list.

New endeavor coming soon...
Raising Alice in Wonderland (DSD, 17), and in love with a Superman
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Old 02-09-2009, 05:17 AM
 
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#13 Thimble Summer by Elizabeth Enright

$14 The Little Book by Selden Edwards

This one was recommended by Bufomander ((thank you)). Been on my hold list and I finally got it. Wheeler goes back in time to Vienna and meets Freud, Mark Twain, and Hitler as well as members of his own family. This book is complicated and has a lot of layers, but it was still easy to follow. It had an element of The Time Traveler's Wife to it. I highly recommend this. I picked it up and put it down a few times, but once I got into it, it held my attention and I'm glad I gave it a chance. The poor guy took decades to write the book and you can tell. It is captivating and well-researched, through and through.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:23 PM
 
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#10 The Geography of Bliss (audio) - I really liked this, much better than Eat, Pray, Love, which I thought was going for the same things. The author is investigating happiness, and visiting happy countries to try to figure out what makes them happy. My only complaint is that the author was not the best choice to read his book. He has some sort of speech impediment/accent that makes him sound like Elmer Fudd eg. middo instead of middle. I missed long stretches of the book because I was so distracted by it.

#11 Mercy Among the Children - Another Canada Reads selection. It was well written, could have been better edited, and the story was very engrossing but SAD. OMG >SAD<. Depressing. It is the story of a poor family in New Brunswick that never gets a break, in fact, their community blames them for everything, and, as a passivist, the father never stands up for himself.

#12 Paint Style - A book of inspiration for painting home interiors. It did have some instructions, as well, but many of the techniques are considered "for professionals only". That I am not.

#13 Gathering Blue - This is the first companion book to The Giver. I enjoyed it but would have enjoyed more of it a lot better. I'm so used to books having endings, real endings that tie up all the loose ends, not endings that make me think. As a fiber enthusiast and dyer, I enjoyed all the dyeing references and they were well researched.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:52 PM
 
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#8 American Shaolin by Matthew Polly

this is about a U.S. college student who takes time off (1992-94) to study kungfu at the Shaolin Temple in Henan province, China. i found it entertaining. i think you need to have some familiarity with martial arts (at least kung fu films) to really enjoy the book (lots of athletic details).

i was surprised that there was not so much focus on Buddhist monastery life--but that was a surprise to the author, too. at the time the temple was very much focused on martial arts performance as a way to draw tourists. it was a memoir of cultural immersion and athletic challenge.


#1 Animal, Vegetable, Miracle --B. Kingsolver, #2 Righteous --L. Sandler, #3 Stargirl--J. Spinelli, #4 For the Love of God --L. Kaylin, #5 Mecca and Main Street --G. Abdo, #6 The Great Theft --K. Abou el Fadl, #7 Muhammad --K. Armstrong

mama to one amazing daughter born 1/2004
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:58 PM
 
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Change of Heart, Jodi Picoult

Quote:
Freelance carpenter Shay Bourne was sentenced to death for killing a little girl, Elizabeth Nealon, and her cop stepfather. Eleven years after the murders, Elizabeth's sister, Claire, needs a heart transplant, and Shay volunteers, which complicates the state's execution plans. Meanwhile, death row has been the scene of some odd events since Shay's arrival—an AIDS victim goes into remission, an inmate's pet bird dies and is brought back to life, wine flows from the water faucets.
For about the first 200 pages of this book, I felt like I was reading a version of The Green Mile as written by Jodi Picoult. She even pokes fun at the similarities, having an inmate keep a ressurected bird in a hollowed-out copy of The Stand. I also felt like the "twist" that's to be expected in all such books was expected. That said, I couldn't stop reading at the end, and felt like the book raised some valid and interesting arguments about the death penalty.


#1 Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker, #2 Moosewood Restaurant New Classics, #3 Autobiography of God, #4 The Ghost Orchid, #5 The Poe Shadow, #6 Knit One Kill Two, #7 Citizen Girl, #8 The Fourth Bear, #9 The Third Secret, #10 Change of Heart
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:34 PM
 
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Did you enjoy the book (well as much as you can given the topic)?
Well - I didn't care for the present story as much as the story of the little girl which was only a small part of the book. It was okay.

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:46 PM
 
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The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

I remember a few years ago it seemed like everybody was reading this book and loving it. I tried to read it but just couldn't get into it. Well a friend of mine recently read it and loved it so I thought I'd give it another try. I did make it through this time but really didn't enjoy it much. It's a cool concept but I just didn't like the writing.

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:35 AM
 
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Well - I didn't care for the present story as much as the story of the little girl which was only a small part of the book. It was okay.
Did you review it on Facebook? The story of the little girl was the most intriguing part of it. Did you ever read Hana's Suitcase? Its a children's book but a very good one about the Holocaust. Its really short and can be read in an hour or less.

Jen, Mom to DS (8) , DD (5) & Alli
(1-04) (8-09)
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:12 AM
 
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Nope -- I didn't review it on Facebook but the story of the girl was the intriguing and best (though very horrible) part of the book. I haven't read Hana's Suitcase. Will request it, thanks.

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:25 AM
 
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Well now she won't friend you. And everyone needs a French author to friend them on Facebook. LOL.

Jen, Mom to DS (8) , DD (5) & Alli
(1-04) (8-09)
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:29 AM
 
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Well - I didn't care for the present story as much as the story of the little girl which was only a small part of the book. It was okay.
I perfered that part of the book as well. The parts with the American journalist was nowhere near as intriguing as the rest of it.
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:37 AM
 
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#5-Change Of Heart by Jodi Picoult

I really enjoyed this book. I have vaguely heard of the Gnostic Gospels in the past and this book has piqued my intrest in them now.

I am trying to read Revolutionary Road, but I just can't get into it. I'm going to try again tonight though.
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:41 AM
 
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Well now she won't friend you. And everyone needs a French author to friend them on Facebook. LOL.
Well--I certainly could review it on Facebook. Actually, it never occurred to me as I am brand new to Facebook. Do I go to her page or a bookpage to review it or do I do it on my page?

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:42 AM
 
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#15 - French Milk by Lucy Knisley

I got this book based on the title (made me think of sweet, creamy milk). I didn't know it was a graphic novel until I actually opened the book. It's written/illustrated by a 22-yr-old woman who spends six weeks in Paris with her mom. Nothing amazing or exciting happens - it's just about the museums they go to, the food they eat, etc. But I really enjoyed the comic strip format. I will have to keep my eye out for more graphic novels like this one.
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:15 PM
 
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Well--I certainly could review it on Facebook. Actually, it never occurred to me as I am brand new to Facebook. Do I go to her page or a bookpage to review it or do I do it on my page?
Do you have Visual Bookshelf on your page?

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Old 02-10-2009, 12:16 PM
 
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#13 Thimble Summer by Elizabeth Enright

$14 The Little Book by Selden Edwards

This one was recommended by Bufomander ((thank you)). Been on my hold list and I finally got it. Wheeler goes back in time to Vienna and meets Freud, Mark Twain, and Hitler as well as members of his own family. This book is complicated and has a lot of layers, but it was still easy to follow. It had an element of The Time Traveler's Wife to it. I highly recommend this. I picked it up and put it down a few times, but once I got into it, it held my attention and I'm glad I gave it a chance. The poor guy took decades to write the book and you can tell. It is captivating and well-researched, through and through.
Cool! I'm glad you liked it!
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:55 PM
 
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#10 - Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

I was particularly interested to read this because I've heard repeatedly that this is Austen's least popular book, and Fanny Price a rather unloved heroine. She's not especially lively or witty. Instead, she's in weak health, quite passive, shy, and has very decided principles that are often read as being priggish.

Fanny is the oldest daughter of a too large and too poor family, and is taken in to be raised by her wealthier aunt and uncle as a child. The catalyst for the bulk of the story is the arrival in the neighbourhood of the attractive and wealthy Crawford siblings. The sister, Mary Crawford, sets her cap for Fanny's cousin Edmund, whom Fanny loves. Edmund believes himself in love with Mary but is troubled by her efforts to dissuade him from entering the clergy. The brother, Henry Crawford, first flirts with Fanny's female cousins, then decides himself in love with Fanny. The rest of the family pressures Fanny to accept, but she is uneasy about what she perceives as Henry's want of principle.

I enjoyed the book very much. Certainly some of the moral values that exercise Fanny are not ones that I hold to quite the same degree, but I was intrigued by a lot of the concepts about the superficial attractiveness of some of the characters and places which belies an underlying rot that only Fanny attends to, until by the end others around her realize the true situation. The notion of having or lacking 'principle' is an interesting one.
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Old 02-10-2009, 02:39 PM
 
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need to catch up on this thread but just finished book #6 of the Southern Vampire Series. i have had trouble reading this month (friends from out of town here for a week, etc. etc. etc.). excuses excuses! lol!

i am debating whether to start A Thousand Splendid Suns or $7 of the Vampire books...

I have enjoyed the vampire books..the author still has me quessing what is going to happen, and after 6 books i think thats a great feat. however, i really want to start on some of the other books recommended here...so im torn. i like to finish a series but this one seems to never end (i think there are 9 so i have 3 left).


1. Club Dead, Charlaine Harris. book #3 of the Southern Vampire Series.
2. Dead to the World #4
3. Dead as a Doornail, book #5 of teh Southern Vampire Series.
4. Holidays on Ice, David Sedaris.
5. Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins.
6. Life as We Knew It
7. Definitely Dead #6 of the Southern Vampire Series.
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Old 02-10-2009, 03:38 PM
 
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Do you have Visual Bookshelf on your page?
No -- and I can't figure out how I would make one. Do you have one that I can look at? How do I set one up?

Cathe Olson, author The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook, Simply Natural Baby Food, and LIck It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love.  
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Old 02-10-2009, 03:47 PM
 
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And don't feel lame, just bring along your love of reading of any kind (slow, fast, a little, a lot, all types of books) and you'll fit right in

And oh, I read that wrong, you read more books this year already than the entire year last year?! Wowee! Nice!
thanks. i read a lot of pregancy related books last year but didnt count, etc. etc. as far as novels, i think i may have read 2 all year.

im a pretty slow reader also..DP will pick up a book im reading and read it all in one night. i wish!!


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Originally Posted by mammastar2 View Post
#9 - Things I've Been Silent About by Azar Nafisi.
This is a new book of memoirs by the author of Reading Lolita in Tehran, which I had read and enjoyed, although I found the personal aspect of it more interesting to me than the literary discussions.
Great book!
definitely adding that to my reserves. I read Reading Lolita a few years ago and loved it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by greenmama View Post
Oh, I don't think I could read this no matter how good it is. I just can't handle details about abuse.
im the same way. images in movies and books just stay with me forever. i still have flashbacks to a famous movie where the mom took teh beatings for her son (by the stepdad). the son ended up killing the step dad. i dont even remember the name of the movie but i remember that fact and i just cant put myself through that again.
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