January 2007 Book Challenge - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 237 Old 01-07-2007, 11:31 PM
 
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RiceMomma - Have you read Climbing Parnassus? If you like TJE, I think CP might be your cup of tea.
Thanks- that looks like something I'd love!
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#62 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 05:48 AM
 
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Subbing :

Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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#63 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 12:02 PM
 
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Well, I've finished my first two of the year

#1 - Mothering Your Nursing Toddler (Rev Ed) - Norma Jane Bumgarner
i think it's fun that you and i have the same first book for 2007.

#3 The Eight by Katherine Neville

this was a thriller-ish type book -- first published in 1988, compared to the da vinci code on the cover. it was good for fluff escapist reading -- but it's 600 pages long and while i don't at all mind long books, i usually don't read *fluff* books that are that long.... but oh well.
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#64 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 12:31 PM
 
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#2 Our Lady of the Forest by David Guterson - Don't waste your time. This book was awful. The story itself was mildly interesting. The writing was pretentious and monotonous. I know the writer was trying to portray a sense of hopelessness, but I doubt the hopelessness was supposed to be so great as to make the reader want to stab herself in the eye with an ice pick! The characters weren't likable or even interesting. I'm just surprised I made it all the way through the book - I started it in October, so it took a while. I can't see myself EVER reading another book by Guterson.
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#65 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 12:48 PM
 
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Trying again with the book challenge...I'm shooting for about 1 book per week, so 52 for the year.

I was stuck in the Philly airport all day Friday so I made it through 3!

1) A Paper Life, by Tatum O'Neal - a fast, interesting read, though it's sad really to read about her childhood. Not the best edited book though.

2) Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli - a young-adult book that's won numerous awards. I don't know...I found it a bit overdone for my tastes. He says in the back-of-the-book interview that it's meant to have almost a fantasy quality to it. but to me, it's too realistic to be a fantasy and too unbelievable to be real. LOL

3) Elaine's Circle, by Bob Katz - non-fiction about a fourth-grade class that has to deal with their classmate's diagnosis of terminal brain cancer. Elaine is their teacher. This was extremely well written. Maybe one too many tangents about Alaska (where the story takes place) but all in all a great read.

I'm also re-reading the sixth Harry Potter book (the UK edition this time) but am only about 12 pages in.

Nancy

A writer/runner/thinker/wife with two daughters (11/02 and 8/05), one dog, three cats, seven fish, and a partridge in a pear tree... in Vermont.
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#66 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 03:15 PM
 
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I think I'll join you. I used to read all the time before Molly was born, but now I don't seem to be reading much at all (even when I have the time). Because I've never set a reading goal before (and because I'm already off to a slow start) I think I'll shoot for 50.

So far I've only read two books.

1. Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

Koontz is always a quick, relatively enjoyable read, and the Odd books are no exception. The books are fun and OddThomas is a really likeable character.

2. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

Everybody loved this book, everybody said I'd love this book. I didn't. I hated it. The only reason I read it is because I left it at work and had nothing else to read while pumping.

Candace - Mama to Molly (02/06), Max (06/08) and Maggie (03/10)
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#67 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 03:29 PM
 
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Read two very good books recently and want to recommend both of them:

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks

[QUOTE][The riveting novel Year of Wonders set in 1666. The narrator is 18-year-old Anna Frith, a widow who works for the local minister's wife and whose boarder is a tailor. A flea-infested bolt of cloth arrives from London for the tailor and from there the scourge is manifested. As the plague begins to wreak havoc the minister persuades his flock to stay in the village and seal themselves off to avoid spreading the infection to the surrounding areas. He arranges for food and supplies to be delivered to the outskirts of the hamlet. The village is plunged into mayhem, and as the number of the dead mount, grief and superstition evoke extreme reactions varying from despair and drunkenness to grave-robbing, witchcraft, and murder. Brooks expertly entwines historical ritual and superstition with a compelling and emotional tale of everyday men and women struggling with extraordinary circumstances.
/QUOTE] powells review

Very interesting read - lots of details to think about from life in the 17th century.

Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

[QUOTE][Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an "excitement addict." Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could make a painting that might last forever.
Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town — and the family — Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had the guts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes her parents with such deep affection and generosity. Hers is a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that despite its profound flaws gave her the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms. /QUOTE] publisher's review

Enjoyed it so much, I am re-reading it already (prompted by a drive through West Virginia last week and seeing very run-down homes much like the ones Walls describes living in).

Both of these books caused me to get on the internet and look for more information - the first on the plague, the second on the author.

Tanya
Mom to John (age 11), James (age 9) & Katherine (age 5)
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#68 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 04:36 PM
 
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I loved Glass Castle . . .


"Vegetarian America" by Karen Iacobbo and Michael Iacobbo

Interesting book of the history of vegetarianism in the U.S. Lots of stuff I didn't know like that the first waves of vegetarians based their beleifs on the bible (Thou Shalt Not Kill, etc.) Also, very interesting to hear how much meat was actually being eaten in the 1800's and all the heath problems it caused even back then. I was particularly interested in finding out more about Sylvester Graham (of the graham cracker fame) and Kellog who was actually not a quack as the novel and movie based on him made him out to be. Also, interstesting to hear about The Farm and how PETA got started and other organizations and movements.

"Bad Dreams" by Anne Fine

This was a juvenile novel about a girl who actually experiences books by just touching them.

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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#69 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 06:27 PM
 
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I could not get into Glass Castles! I really wanted to, but couldn't.

has anyone read Mark Haddon's latest? I loved "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the NIght-time" but have not read his newer novel.

A writer/runner/thinker/wife with two daughters (11/02 and 8/05), one dog, three cats, seven fish, and a partridge in a pear tree... in Vermont.
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#70 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 06:52 PM
 
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Just starting to get into the habit of reading books again, no real goal as to how many, but definately beyond the near-zippo from last year!. Here are the ones I have started so far.

#1 Last Child In The Woods - Saving your child from Nature Deficit Syndrome by Richard Louv

#2 Stitch N Bitch, A Knitters Handbook by Debbie Stoller: Still can't knit worth beans but a real fun read!

#3 Mooses Come Walking by Arlo Guthrie

#4 We Share Everything by Robert Munsch: Now if I can only get my twins to share!

Waldorf mama to 5yo b/g twins
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#71 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 09:19 PM
 
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#2 Sacred Contracts
Awakening your divine potential
by Caroline Myss

Non Fiction. Not bad. Very interesting but I don't think I agree 100%. Doesn't stop me from reading it though. Love the way she refers to different religions to tie things together.

Yummy Yarns

by Kathleen and Nick Greco
Non fiction. Pretty good. My mom found it at the library and dropped it off at my place along with all her knitting needles. Yippy! Not only did I read the book, I've been trying out the different stitches and needle sizes. Fun!

#1 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, #2 Sacred Contracts, #3 Yummy Yarns
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#72 of 237 Old 01-08-2007, 10:40 PM
 
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I know the writer was trying to portray a sense of hopelessness, but I doubt the hopelessness was supposed to be so great as to make the reader want to stab herself in the eye with an ice pick!
:

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#1 Last Child In The Woods - Saving your child from Nature Deficit Syndrome by Richard Louv
What did you think of this one? It's been on my bookshelf for a few months and I keep meaning to pick it up.

Expecting #2 in May 2013!

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#73 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 01:06 AM
 
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Haven't finished anything new, but just wanted to leap in and comment on a few things.

Bufomander - I also think it's neat that we have the same first book - perhaps we'll intersect with other books eventually!

Teensy - thank you for reminding me of Year of Wonders! I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it fascinating but read it several years ago. Now it will go on my list of books that I should buy because the rereading will be worth it. I also recently finished Glass Castle and just tore through it because I found it so rivetting.

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#1 Last Child In The Woods - Saving your child from Nature Deficit Syndrome by Richard Louv

What did you think of this one? It's been on my bookshelf for a few months and I keep meaning to pick it up.
I read this last February right after DD was born, a large part of it out loud to her. I can't say that I 'enjoyed' it in the common sense of the term, but it was interesting, if a bit repetitive towards the end. Mostly it reinforced my decisions to try to limit DD's exposure to TV/movies and to encourage her to spend time outside, whether we're playing, skipping, bike riding, walking, gardening or just hanging out and reading. It also made me long for a place in the woods since I live in the most densely populated neighbourhood in my city. Overall, I'd say that it's something valuable to have on your bookshelf just to inspire you to get out into nature and learn about it. I think just reading a chapter here or there once a year will be sufficient for me from here on out.
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#74 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 01:41 AM
 
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#1 Learning at Home: A Mother's Guide to Homeschooling by Marty Layne
Excellent read for any homeschooling parent. Marty Layne has 4 adult children and homeschooled them all. She shares her ups and downs and lessons learned. At the end is a book list for all ages. Her style is unschooling but I think all types of homeschool parents will benefit from this read
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#75 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 10:50 AM
 
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I've been AWOL for a couple of months-too many things going on in my life-hopefully things have settled down now, so I'm jumping in and subbing.
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#76 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 12:09 PM
 
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has anyone read Mark Haddon's latest? I loved "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the NIght-time" but have not read his newer novel.
i read it for book club a few months ago. it was okay i certainly didn't hate it... but the fact that i don't really remember much about it probably says something... i gave it three stars out of 5 on amazon and it only has a 3 1/2average out of 45 ratings...

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I read this last February right after DD was born, a large part of it out loud to her. I can't say that I 'enjoyed' it in the common sense of the term, but it was interesting, if a bit repetitive towards the end. Mostly it reinforced my decisions to try to limit DD's exposure to TV/movies and to encourage her to spend time outside, whether we're playing, skipping, bike riding, walking, gardening or just hanging out and reading. It also made me long for a place in the woods since I live in the most densely populated neighbourhood in my city. Overall, I'd say that it's something valuable to have on your bookshelf just to inspire you to get out into nature and learn about it. I think just reading a chapter here or there once a year will be sufficient for me from here on out.
i keep thinking i should read this -- it's something i could do better about -- getting dd out and about... not one of my strengths, as a person in general or as a parent...

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#1 Learning at Home: A Mother's Guide to Homeschooling by Marty Layne
Excellent read for any homeschooling parent. Marty Layne has 4 adult children and homeschooled them all. She shares her ups and downs and lessons learned. At the end is a book list for all ages. Her style is unschooling but I think all types of homeschool parents will benefit from this read
we keep talking about homeschooling... need to start doing something more concrete to make our decision!

#4 Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

This was a book club read for this Thursday. It was an interesting story (it's a novel) told by a man in his 90's about his time in the circus in the early
1930's.
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#77 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 07:04 PM
 
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#1: Jan Wong's China by Jan Wong

Jan Wong, a Chinese-Canadian journalist, writes about her experiences working in and visiting China. It's a good read, if sometimes a bit breezy and journalist-y. I read her newspaper columns and occasionally find them irritating too. Some fascinating insights/thoughts, though. The chapter on Tibet was especially interesting. The book was published a few years ago, so not entirely au courant, but still food for thought about China's transformation towards capitalism, under a totalitarian dictatorship. A long time ago I read her other book, Red China Blues, and I think there was more 'there' there, but this one was still very much worth a read.
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#78 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 08:42 PM
 
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What a great thread! I don't know how I missed it. So far this year I've read: The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen. It was really good and I couldn't put it down. It's set in 1915 during WW1 and the Spanish flu outbreak. It really dealt with some powerful issues. The town in question quarantines itself. I really liked it. I also read The Girlfriend's Guide to Getting Your Groove Back by Vicki Iovine. In general I don't like her parenting advice but she makes me feel less like a mess. I really enjoyed this book more than any of her others and found it more in line (a little) with my thinking. I also read Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA by Ellen Meister. It was light reading but it was funny and really kep my attention. It was about a PTA going nuts when a George Clooney movie might be being made at the elementary school. I liked it. I'm excited to find this thread. I fly through books. I am reading Sue Grafton's first book now to see if I like her series since lots of people seem to.
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#79 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 09:32 PM
 
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#4 Lucifer's Shadow, Haddow

Quote:
The novel alternates between present-day and eighteenth-century Venice, following flawed and unwary innocents down the devil's path, tempted by visions of fame, personal glory, and love. In 1733, a wealthy patron of the arts supplies a lovely and talented Jewish woman with a...violin and the venue for her debut as a concert soloist in a world hostile to both women and Jews. In modern Venice, a young scholar is manipulated into selling a stolen antique violin and pretending authorship of a brilliant concerto recently unearthed in his employer's basement.
I found the first 50 pages or so to be slow, and then it got really, really good. The atmosphere of Venice is amazing, and the flipping back and forth between the time periods really works.

#1 - Tiger in the Well, #2 - Laptop Lunch User's Guide, #3 An Inconvenient Truth, #4 Lucifer's Shadow
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#80 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 10:18 PM
 
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I would like to join in. My goal is to read 1 a week or 52 books.

#1 A Tree Grows In Brooklyn- Betty Smith
A classic, I loved it!

#2 The Big Shuffle- Laura Pedersen
3rd in her series, the first two were better. It was nice to revisit the characters though.

#3 The Memory Keepers Daughter- Kim Edwards
This was a beautifully crafted book, the language was amazing, the story was lacking in some way for me. I just finished it so I am not completely clear yet.

Happy Reading!

~Traci, wife to DH 4-88. Mom to 3 homebirthed sons, 22,20&17

The Blue Door Farmhouse & traci.mymomentis.biz

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#81 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 10:36 PM
 
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The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen. It was really good and I couldn't put it down. It's set in 1915 during WW1 and the Spanish flu outbreak. It really dealt with some powerful issues. The town in question quarantines itself. I really liked it.
Ooh ... this one has been on my list for a while now. I just haven't been able to get around to it (being an English Lit major kinda tends to put a cramp in leisure reading ) ... but the seventh graders I work with (I'm an Assistant Teacher at a local charter school) have just finished their unit on WWI and we finished up by talking about the Spanish Flu pandemic which took place during the demobilization of the Central Powers and Entente Powers - absolutely fascinating. The kids (12-14 yos) had never heard of it, so I made sure to mention it in the PowerPoint presentation I put together.

The other one I want to read along the same line is The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History by John M. Barry

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

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#82 of 237 Old 01-09-2007, 11:18 PM
 
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Regarding Last Child in the Woods...
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Originally Posted by renaissanceed View Post
I read this last February right after DD was born, a large part of it out loud to her. I can't say that I 'enjoyed' it in the common sense of the term, but it was interesting, if a bit repetitive towards the end. Mostly it reinforced my decisions to try to limit DD's exposure to TV/movies and to encourage her to spend time outside, whether we're playing, skipping, bike riding, walking, gardening or just hanging out and reading. It also made me long for a place in the woods since I live in the most densely populated neighbourhood in my city. Overall, I'd say that it's something valuable to have on your bookshelf just to inspire you to get out into nature and learn about it. I think just reading a chapter here or there once a year will be sufficient for me from here on out.
Cool, thanks for the write-up!

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#1 A Tree Grows In Brooklyn- Betty Smith
A classic, I loved it!
Ooh, one of my favorites! :

I still haven't finished anything for the year but I did start and abandon one book because it was really hard to get into: No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam. I got about 30 pages in and the history was missing too much of the "story" for my taste. Do any of you know of a really good, interesting book about Islam?

Expecting #2 in May 2013!

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#83 of 237 Old 01-10-2007, 12:01 AM
 
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I am loving this thread I was just wondering where I could get some more good reads recommendations!

I would like to keep track of what I have read this year too, but don't know if I want to make a numerical goal. I think that 48 sounds reasonable though, 4 a month.

Right now I am reading;

Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, by Anne Tyler. I really enjoy her books, and am going to read the rest of them this year I think. This one is not one of my favorites by her so far though.

The Kitchen Garden by Sylvia Thompson. This book is great! I love to read about gardening in the late winter. I read this with a pile of seed catalouges by my side.

The Tabbie Family; DH , DS , DD , a few :, a couple : and me.
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#84 of 237 Old 01-10-2007, 01:50 AM
 
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Ooh ... this one has been on my list for a while now. I just haven't been able to get around to it (being an English Lit major kinda tends to put a cramp in leisure reading ) ... but the seventh graders I work with (I'm an Assistant Teacher at a local charter school) have just finished their unit on WWI and we finished up by talking about the Spanish Flu pandemic which took place during the demobilization of the Central Powers and Entente Powers - absolutely fascinating. The kids (12-14 yos) had never heard of it, so I made sure to mention it in the PowerPoint presentation I put together.

The other one I want to read along the same line is The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History by John M. Barry
i really liked last town on earth. fil was reading the barry book and seemed to be enjoying it when we were visiting indiana in december.


#5 Tough Cookie by Diane Mott Davidson
another in her culinary mystery series. they are set in colorado, where i live, and so that's sort of fun.
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#85 of 237 Old 01-10-2007, 08:29 AM
 
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I understand about The Memory Keeper's Daughter. I found it really compelling but it was also lacking in some way for me also. I would recommend it because it was good. But I was deflated somehow after reading it.
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#86 of 237 Old 01-10-2007, 01:54 PM
 
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This is the first time I've seen ambivalent reviews for The Memory Keeper's Daughter. My local reading buddy said it was brilliant and she literally couldn't put it down until she finished, and the women on my fitness forum said it was horrible and to avoid it like the plague.

I can't read it for months. I'm on a book-buying fast - I can't buy a single one until March 1st (thinking of expanding that to April), and my library fines are too high to check out anything. : So I made up my reading list for the next few months solely from books I already have on my shelves.

chanale ✡, ❖bibliophile❖ ❇vegan❇ mom to diva (5½)
madly in with spiritwolf, dad to (9) & (5½)
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#87 of 237 Old 01-10-2007, 06:23 PM
 
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Dear Chanale,

Why not try www.paperbackswap.com, I just started, it is so easy and the book selection is huge. Of course, I can't part with my faves, but there were about 25 books I was willing to part with. I ahve already sent out 3 which gives me a credit of 6- for 6 books.

blessings,

~Traci, wife to DH 4-88. Mom to 3 homebirthed sons, 22,20&17

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#88 of 237 Old 01-10-2007, 11:16 PM
 
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i'd have to agree to some ambivalent feelings about memory keeper's daughter -- i think i just didn't think it was as amazing as some people had made it out to be, but i did more or less enjoy it... if that makes any sense.

i'll second the paperbackswap recommendation -- i've been a member there for about a year and a half and it's been wonderful.... feel free to ask me if you have any questions! (i'm a bit evangelistic about it...: )

#6 Sticks and Stones by Diane Mott Davidson

another culinary mystery, better than the last one.

#7 Chopping Spree by Diane Mott Davidson
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#89 of 237 Old 01-11-2007, 03:22 PM
 
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"Well Wished" by Franny Billinsley

This book was amazing. Don't be put off by the fact that it's juvenile fiction - it's great. Sort of fairytalish - like a real Hans Christian Anderson - a lot for adults here.

The story is about this town where there is a wishing well. Everyone is allowed one wish per lifetime and they have 1 month to revoke the wish after they make it. Somehow the well has a way of turning wishes bad and also luring people to make wishes. Because of a wish - all the children of the town except one girl have disappeared - and she wants the kids back so she can have a friend. Even though she promised her uncle she would never, ever make a wish - well, I'm sure you can guess.

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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#90 of 237 Old 01-11-2007, 03:42 PM
 
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cathe, that book sounds cool!

Bufomander, I read all the Diane Mott Davidsons too. Actually, I started listening to the most recent one ("Dark Tort") on tape during a business trip. I realized then that her writing is sooooo repetitive! But when I'm reading it myself I don't notice. Oh well...didn't stop me from checking out the book from the library when I got home (I hadn't finished the entire audio set so I didn't know whodunnit yet!).

I am not buying any books until at least April either. I have >30 (!!!) books that I have not read. Some I bought, some were gifts, some come from our library that sells old books for 50 cents....but I have a lot and I gotta get going on them.

A writer/runner/thinker/wife with two daughters (11/02 and 8/05), one dog, three cats, seven fish, and a partridge in a pear tree... in Vermont.
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