Thursday, November 12, 2009

Book Four - Love the One You're With

Well I am really getting into this whole reading thing! I actually ventured back into the library, according to them (and my outstanding $40 worth of fines, je suis terrible) I haven't been in since 2003. Well since you can take out adult books on a children's card I saw little reason to pay my fine, but now that I am all in for cannonball, I thought that I would pay up so that I can have unlimited access without feeling guilty for stealing my kid's card.

So I was free to choose books that I wouldn't necessarily pay for in these tough economic times (side note- did you know that men are jerking off more now due to economic stress? I love that!!!). One of the first two that I chose was Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin. I have read three of her previous works and found them to be entertaining, if only a bit of a guilty pleasure.

Giffin creates characters that are fairly relatable and creates a world for them that is easy to sink into. In this case the protagonist is a woman who has a chance run in with an ex, the one that got away. She is recently married to a decent man, and is in a comfortable marriage, perhaps lacking the excitement and fireworks that she seems to remember from her previous relationship.

She makes some questionable choices, and becomes closer to her ex, and keeps secrets from her husband. I was invested enough to be concerned for her marriage, and I did get swept up a bit in the ending. It is a harmlessly entertaining girlie read and I would recommend it to someone who is seeking that sort of thing.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Book Three - The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing

The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Bank was a decent read. I have read this before, but I had absolutely no recollection of the plot when I picked it up off my shelf, so I thought that I would give it a go and see why it was so forgettable.

To be fair, I have a touch of PTSD and so I can be prone to memory loss.

The novel was pretty good, a bit twee at times and a bit too snappy for its own good. But I found that the narrator, Jane, was quite relatable. I am also a "funny" type of gal who doesn't quite feel that she measures up to the beauty types. I do enjoy this type of novel, or at least I have in the past. I guess I am a sucker for a romance.

However, in this novel, Jane meets the "Mr Right" character very late in the tale. There was a whole chapter dedicated to some random neighbours and their dinner party, unless I am mistaken they didn't come into play later in the plot. The story would have been well served to have left that part out and gave us more of the story of Jane and "Mr Right". I guess I want a bit more than the happily ever after bullshit.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Book Two - Wishful Drinking

I was at the grocery store yesterday and this book was on sale, it was thin and it looked funny, so I went ahead and bought it. I will probably regret it when I run out of gas money next week. but what are you gonna do?

Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher was an easy and entertaining read. Her sense of humor radiates from every page. It is a quick overview of main highlights of her crazy life. I really enjoyed it, I like to read biographies, but I find that sometimes they are much too lengthy and difficult to get into. This one may have leaned too far on the brief side, as I enjoyed her writing style very much and would have loved to have continued to read about her. I guess I will have to read some more of her work.

There were many passages that I had to read aloud to my boyfriend, inside info about W from her friends, "toys" as Christmas presents from her mother, as well as this wonderful quote: "You know how they say that religion is the opiate of the masses? Well, I took masses of opiates religiously". She touches on her experiences with mental illness (including ECT), alcoholism, marriages and having celebrity parents. And all of this in 163 pages. It is a lot to cover in that short time, and sometimes it does feel a bit rushed.

Definitely one that I would recommend to anyone looking for a laugh and commiseration. If you haven't learned the lesson that you can make it through the worst of times and find the sense of humor in it, then read this one and you should have it figured out by then.

Book One - Wicked

Well now that I have finished 2 books comes the daunting task of writing something about them.

Wicked originally caught my eye in Chapters due to the interesting visual design on the cover as well as the unique touch of having green dye on the sides of the pages to create a green look on the outer side of all the pages. I was intrigued after reading the blurb and reccomendations, so I thought I would give it a go.

This was back in the summertime and I was looking to do some more reading so I bought 2 books with the hope of having them both finished by summer's end. The first book I read rather quickly (Just After Sunset, Stephen King - I am a King junkie) but Wicked failed to capture my interest enough for me to make much headway.

When I decided to join the Read, I picked it up again with the intention of finishing it before the official start date so that I could have a review right out of the gate. That may be cheating, and if so I will change it to book zero, but as I have already finished book 2 I am not too concerned. As I said previous, my main concern at this point is writing the reviews. See how I have not said much about the actual book in all this rambling.

Ok, on to the actual book. I have mixed feelings about it overall. I found it dull at times, but I did get invested in the characters and story.

The character Elphaba (Wicked Witch of the West) was well written. To take an antagonist and change the perspective was quite intriguing. I found myself great empathy for a misunderstood character, and I found the inevitable ending quite sad. The book also discusses the true nature of evil, and wether it exists at all.

The author managed to bring the novel to a conclusion in a satisfying manner, although he spent much of the novel dwelling on characters unknown to myself (though having not read any Oz books they may be familiar to some, I am not aware) and the familiar elements were just touched on in the brief final section.

The best thing I can say is that I am happy that I am finished reading it, and happier still that I am almost done writing my first review. I hope they will get easier as I go along.