March 2010 Book Challenge - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 87 Old 03-01-2010, 06:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow. March. Ho-Lee Cow. You know what they say: In like a lion out like a lamb. Or is it the other way around? I don't remember. Anyway... welcome and, with that:

Now, repeat after me...

So, just by way of clarification (for comers both new and old), new and improved guidelines for the Book Challenge Thread are as follows:

1) Post the books you read ... or not
2) Post a recommendation ... or not
3) Number your book ... or not
4) Make a goal ... or not
5) Have fun with books (This one, unfortunately, is MANDATORY)



So, with that, avante, allons-y and a happy reading March to everyone!

2009's Thread can be found HERE
January's Thread can be found HERE
February's Thread can be found HERE

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

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#2 of 87 Old 03-01-2010, 06:28 PM
 
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#51 How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford
4/5
#52 The Dollhouse Murders by Betty Ren Wright
4/5
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#3 of 87 Old 03-01-2010, 07:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#51 How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford
The title alone makes me want to look this one up.

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

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#4 of 87 Old 03-01-2010, 08:15 PM
 
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The title alone makes me want to look this one up.
Me too We just had a robot birthday party for our now 2yr old on Saturday. It was fun
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#5 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 02:09 AM
 
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Happy Dr. Suess Day everybody (or almost). Got lots of fun planned for my students this week

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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#6 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 03:09 AM
 
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#51 How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford
4/5
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewCrunchyDaddy View Post
The title alone makes me want to look this one up.
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Me too We just had a robot birthday party for our now 2yr old on Saturday. It was fun
I vacillated between a 3.5 and a 4 on this one. The "Robot" in the title refers to the female protagonist whose mother often says she is heartless, cold, has no feelings, "like a robot". My favorite part was the late night radio show she and her friend listen to.

#53 A Brief History of Montmaray by Michelle Cooper
fictional island off the coast of Spain/France in 1936-37. didn't love it. YA. Reminded me of... oh the long title with the potato peel...pie...society?
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#7 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 03:56 AM
 
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I felt the same way about the robot one.

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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#8 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 04:43 AM
 
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I felt the same way about the robot one.
the planets have realigned, Cathe!
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#9 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 12:51 PM
 
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#15 - Five Little Pigs by Agatha Christie

Nice, light re-read.
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#10 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 01:04 PM
 
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the planets have realigned, Cathe!
What's funny is when you first posted Robot, it looked like you gave it a 4/5 so I thought, man I didn't like it that much . . .

So, YES! We're back, Buff.

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#11 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 03:12 PM
 
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7. Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
- read this with my daughter, she liked all the details of how to survive “in the old days”

8. Little House on the Praire by Laura Ingalls Wilder
- read this with my daughter, I forgot about the racist part of the book…

9. Push by Saphire
- heavy book, still want to see the movie
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#12 of 87 Old 03-02-2010, 06:01 PM
 
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#14 Making History by Stephen Fry
What if Hitler had never been born? What would the world look like? And, would you be able to put it back without consequence?

I really liked this book. I wasn't always in love with Fry's dialogue and the main character was a bit of a prat. But, I did love the book. It was engrossing, and secretly, the type of book I would love to write.

#15 Time of My Life by Allison Winn Scotch
I did not like this one at all. I felt like it was very predictable, didn't really make you think, and had a very abrupt ending that didn't seem to fit. The premise is frustrated, suburban wife makes a wish and ends up 7 years in her past with the one who got away. What does she do?

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#13 of 87 Old 03-03-2010, 07:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#7 Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls
by Steve Hockensmith

My review can be found HERE


#1 Tales from Outer Suburbia, #2 The Men Who Stare at Goats, #3 Under the Dome (Audio), #4 Benito Cereno, #5 Doctor Who: The Rising Night, An Exclusive Audio Adventure (Audio), #6 UR (Audio), #7 Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls

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

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#14 of 87 Old 03-04-2010, 01:33 AM
 
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#52 The Dollhouse Murders by Betty Ren Wright
4/5
I remember reading that as a kid! Thanks for the reminder.

Expecting #2 in May 2013!

0***4***8***12***16***20***baby.gif***28***32***36***40

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#15 of 87 Old 03-04-2010, 01:40 PM
 
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#54 Compound by S.A. Bodeen
Good stuff, reminds me of Margaret Peterson Haddix's stuff. To quote the very short passage on the book flap: "Eli and his family have lived in the Compound for six years. The world they knew is gone. Eli's father built the Compound to keep them safe. Now, they can't get out. He won't let them." Not sure what people here will think of it, but I liked it. I'm really trying to judge j-lit and YA with the audience they were written for in mind.

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What's funny is when you first posted Robot, it looked like you gave it a 4/5 so I thought, man I didn't like it that much . . .

So, YES! We're back, Buff.


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I remember reading that as a kid! Thanks for the reminder.
I totally read it as a kid. I felt a little funny reading it to my almost 6-year-old, but we just made it a "during the day" book -- not so much a bedtime book.
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#16 of 87 Old 03-04-2010, 01:52 PM
 
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The Nanny Returns by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus

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Nan revisits 721 Park, home of the moneyed but morally bankrupt Xs, and the boy she guiltily left behind in their inept care in this smart and sassy sequel to The Nanny Diaries. And though Nan has grown up a bit, married Harvard Hottie Ryan and traveled the world, the plight of the rich and stupid continues, as does Nan's new crusade to save former charge Grayer and his younger brother Stilton, renovate a crumbling East Harlem mansion and stick it out at a soulless Manhattan private school.
The book seemed a bit disjointed in the beginning like the authors couldn't get in sync with each other or the characters. It picked up a little as the story went along but still didn't flow very nicely. There were a lot of subplots that were left to dangle (perhaps to make room for the third installment "The Nanny Returns ... again").

Jen, Mom to DS (8) , DD (5) & Alli
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#17 of 87 Old 03-05-2010, 03:02 AM
 
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#16 Darkborn by Alison Sinclair

This was a really good first start for a series. It's a fantasy book with a Victorian like setting, but it's not really steampunk. This book was very foundational, which could get a little boring, but I'm excited for the next one due out in June.

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#18 of 87 Old 03-05-2010, 03:13 AM
 
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#55 The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson
I liked this one. Reminded me of some of Margaret Peterson Haddix's stuff, in some different ways from the last one. From the book flap "...presents an unforgettable look at one human life and a glimpse into a possible future that may be closer than we think." bioethics, a slam on anti-bacterial soaps, and the extreme things a parent's love may drive them to -- what more can you ask for?

Also I have this song lyric stuck in my head "It never rains in southern California, girl, don't they warn ya" just thought you all should know.
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#19 of 87 Old 03-05-2010, 12:05 PM
 
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#56 Liberated Parents, Liberated Children by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
by the authors of How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk
I'm about 1/3 of the way of the way through it and it's excellent!
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#20 of 87 Old 03-05-2010, 04:17 PM
 
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The Man in the Dark Suit, King

The Battle of the Labyrinth

4th in the Percy Jackson series -- I think its' getting better in the later books which is unusual.
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#21 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 03:02 AM
 
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reading (and enjoying) Gifted by Nikita Lalwani, story of a young girl, math geek, who has a hard time because of her math gifts. i want Rumi to be a happy victor in the end....but i'm not too confident that will happen.

also reading al-Muhaddithat: the women scholars in Islam....but i don't expect any of you to add it to your "must read" list

mama to one amazing daughter born 1/2004
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#22 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 04:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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also reading al-Muhaddithat: the women scholars in Islam....but i don't expect any of you to add it to your "must read" list
That looks interesting ... I'm writing a paper for my global women's class on the disconnect between the goals of western feminism and the goals of Islamic feminism. I'll have to see if I can find this.

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

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#23 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 04:17 AM
 
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#57 The Murder Stone by Charles Todd
a stand-alone novel from the author of two mystery series I've been enjoying. Set in WWI England with lots of family intrigue. just finishing it up.
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#24 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 02:51 PM
 
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Malice by Chris Wooding

It took me almost a week to finish this book--but that's only because my 5th grade daughter kept sneaking it away from me and when we took a car trip with friends, the 5th grade son of my friend kept sneaking it away from her. Of course the flashy 3-D cover caught their eyes right away but it was the inside that hooked them. This book starts right out so creepy and mysterious that it pulls you right in. The mystery of the comic book featuring kids from missing children flyers and the chant to have Tall Jake 'take me away' is just too much to resist. Then the kids who recite the chant end up in the comic books and are trapped in a world of horrible mechanical monsters and crazy rules. It's the ultimate mix of fantasy, horror, and comics. The only thing I didn't like was the cliffhanger ending that left off in the middle of the story with no closure at all . . . but you can be sure I will be getting the next installment. I will also be definitely ordering this in for my elementary school library.

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#25 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 08:49 PM
 
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Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier.

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Tart-tongued spinster Elizabeth Philpot meets young Mary Anning after moving from London to the coastal town of Lyme Regis. The two quickly form an unlikely friendship based on their mutual interest in finding fossils, which provides the central narrative as working-class Mary emerges from childhood to become a famous fossil hunter, with her friend and protector Elizabeth to defend her against the men who try to take credit for Mary's finds. Their friendship, however, is tested when Colonel Birch comes to Lyme to ask for Mary's help in hunting fossils and the two spinsters compete for his attention.
This is a very complex but very slow book -- not in a boring way but in the way a true character novel progresses. There is no rush of action (even with the discovery of rare dinosaur fossils). Admittedly, I wondered in the first few chapters if I would be able to stick through to the end. I soon find myself very intrigued by the character's and their relations with each other. I know their are deeper themes of social constructs and the burgeoning evolution theory of the 19th century. I wish I was a prolific enough writer to comment on them -- but I am not. So all I can tell you is the themes are there.

It should be noted that the characters are based on actual people and actual events that took place during the 19th century in coastal England. Being a bit of a history enthusiast, it was interesting to be able to do a little extra research on the people mentioned.

"Forget About It" by Caprice Crane

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Jordan Landau is having a bad life. At twenty-five, she is attractive, smart, funny and talented. But all that doesn't keep her mother from calling her fat, her boss from stealing her ideas, and her boyfriend from cheating on her. Day in and day out, she sits back and watches as everyone walks all over her. Then one day while riding her bike home from a particularly awful day, Jordan collides with a car door and is knocked clear off her bicycle. Coming to in the hospital, Jordan realizes she has a perfect excuse for a "do-over"; she vows to fake amnesia and reinvent herself. And it works. Finally, Jordan is able to get the credit she deserves at work, and she stands up to her family and her jerk boyfriend. She's living the life she always dreamed of--until the unthinkable happens. Suddenly Jordan must start over for real, and figure out what really makes her happy--and how to live a truly memorable life.
A funny book and a quick read -- perfect for a lazy weekend. Crane doesn't write Pulitzer winning books but she certainly knows how to entertain. Plus her Mom is Ginger from Gilligan's Island and that makes me laugh.

Jen, Mom to DS (8) , DD (5) & Alli
(1-04) (8-09)
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#26 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 09:09 PM
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The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

INCREDIBLY fascinating biography/science book.

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#27 of 87 Old 03-07-2010, 10:22 PM
 
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#58 A Long Shadow by Charles Todd
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#28 of 87 Old 03-08-2010, 02:07 AM
 
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That looks interesting ... I'm writing a paper for my global women's class on the disconnect between the goals of western feminism and the goals of Islamic feminism. I'll have to see if I can find this.
great paper topic! there is a youtube interview with Ingrid Mattson, in 4 ten-minute parts (it goes quickly!). just search on her name, with "women and Islam", and you'll see it. she gives great historical context. in case it is useful, i highly recommend muslimah media watch for resources.

mama to one amazing daughter born 1/2004
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#29 of 87 Old 03-08-2010, 02:22 AM
 
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The Birthday Ball by Lois Lowry

Fun juvenile novel about a princess who is just so unbearably bored with her life. To make matters worse, in five days she will turn 16 and have to choose between the Duke Desmond of Dyspepsia, Prince Percival of Pustula and Lords Colin and Cuthbert the Conjoint (who never bathe because no tub is big enough to fit them both) for her husband. She disguises herself as a peasant and sneaks off to attend the village school where she befriends the young, handsome schoolmaster. At the big birthday ball, she choses the schoolmaster -- not to wed but to help her become a teacher.

Though the story is not terribly original, the writing and characters are wonderful and the story was just so funny, with many laugh out loud moments. I immediately passed this on to my 8-yo daughter who loved it as well.

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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#30 of 87 Old 03-08-2010, 05:59 PM
 
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#59 A False Mirror by Charles Todd

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The Birthday Ball by Lois Lowry

Fun juvenile novel about a princess who is just so unbearably bored with her life. To make matters worse, in five days she will turn 16 and have to choose between the Duke Desmond of Dyspepsia, Prince Percival of Pustula and Lords Colin and Cuthbert the Conjoint (who never bathe because no tub is big enough to fit them both) for her husband. She disguises herself as a peasant and sneaks off to attend the village school where she befriends the young, handsome schoolmaster. At the big birthday ball, she choses the schoolmaster -- not to wed but to help her become a teacher.

Though the story is not terribly original, the writing and characters are wonderful and the story was just so funny, with many laugh out loud moments. I immediately passed this on to my 8-yo daughter who loved it as well.
your description reminds me of A Royal Pain (by ellen conford, i think)
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