Some of My Favorite Books

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

This Beautiful Life by Helen Schulman

Talk about your spoiled lives. This book had them in spades. 

At the beginning of this book, the Bergamot family was an all-American intact modern unit--father, mother, son, and adopted Chinese daughter--living excessively in New York City.

Then for one after another of the characters, shee shee hit the proverbial fan of this picture perfect group. Oh boy. After reading Imperfect Birds, I didn't need this follow-up dose of disfunction, but I read it anyway. If was after all, well written and interesting but troubling. I think I just wanted something a little lighter. All in all, I'd recommend This Beautiful Life (of course, who wouldn't!?).

I am not sure what I'm going to read next, but I may start plowing through the biography of Jack London I brought home from Learning Ally after we finished recording it. I need a break from make-believe BS. I know from the bit I read that Jack London had drama galore but at least it was all real.

Book Read: This Beautiful Life

Author:  Helen Schulman
ISBN:  978-0-06-202438-1

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Imperfect Birds by Anne Lamott

I stayed last night until after 2 a.m. so I could finish reading Imperfect Birds. It wasn't so much I wanted to know how it ended; in fact, I was sort of scared to find out how it ended. It was that I didn't want to keep thinking about it.

This book deals with two airy-fairy liberal (very liberal and I'm liberal) parents (one parent, one step-parent) and their 17-year-old daughter who is trouble. If my kids had pulled the shenanigans (basically, drugs, lies, disrespect) that Rosie Ferguson pulled, I might have acted as off the wall as her mother.

I like Anne Lamott's writing. A lot. This book held up, just fine. It was just such a touchy topic and laid bare that it was painful in many parts to read. Have you read Imperfect Birds? I'd love to hear what you thought of it.

Book Read: Imperfect Birds
Author:  Anne Lamott
ISBN:  978-1-59448-751-4

Monday, February 13, 2012

This Charming Man by Marian Keyes

This is the second Marian Keyes book I've read. This one has its light and fluffy moments like The Brightest Star in the Sky, but This Charming Man throws some heavy bricks in with the fluff.

This novel is entertaining, somewhat suspenseful, and deals with what a charming guy can do to lots of gals and get away with it. I hate to leave spoilers so won't say what he does, but it's bad. Really bad.

Book Read: This Charming Man
Author:  Marian Keyes
ISBN:  978-0-06-112402-0

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Virgin Blue by Tracy Chevalier

When an author writes a lot of books, I usually try to read their first one first but in the case of Tracy Chevalier, I did it bassackwards. I have read all of her other books but just finished reading her first novel, The Virgin Blue. It was good but not as good as her others, which goes to show you that some authors' writing does improve over time. Hers has!

That said, this book was still good. It was an interesting story and well written but not quite up to her current writing. It was almost like she was trying so hard that it showed. I'm still glad I read The Virgin Blue because I don't think Tracy Chevalier has written a bad book.

Book Read: The Virgin Blue
Author:  Tracy Chevalier
ISBN:  0-452-28444-9

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Girl in the Green Raincoat by Laura Lippman

Okay, I read the novella The Girl in the Green Raincoat in a few days and have to say, it was just okay. Not bad but not great. I've read most of Laura Lippman's novels and this one was a serial (published first in installments in the New York Times.  The main character, Tess Monaghan, is a PI who has been featured in at least nine other novels.

Maybe it's me. Maybe I'm tired to Tess. Or maybe she needs to retire Tess. This just seemed like it didn't work as well as the early Tess books to me.

Book Read: The Girl in the Green Raincoat
Author:  Laura Lippman
ISBN:  978-0-06-193836-8


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