Book Nymphs

We survived our 50 books in one year challenge. In 2009 we are still reading...

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn (#3, Fiction)

I loved this book.  In a quick, beach read, hooked from the minute I read the back to the second I snapped it shut 28 hours later type way. 

My guilty pleasure for sure.  It's another dark, twisted story that leaves you much more satisfied and less angry than Gone Girl.

4 out of 5 (per guilty pleasure category, not literary category)

The Round House by Louise Erdrich (#2, Fiction, North Dakota (2))

Second book from the Brooklyn Magazine list.  Great book.  As I read the book I kept imagining that the time frame of events took place much farther in the past.  It's sad that so many issues continue to exist between Indians on reservations and the whites nearby.  But, I shouldn't be surprised, I've been in a state (South Dakota) where the kids regularly referred to "The Res" in an extremely derogatory way.

4 out of 5

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Still Life with Bread Crumbs by Anna Quindlen (#1, Fiction)

I found this book extremely thought provoking and a bit superficial at the same time.  I've only read one Anna Quindlen book, and that was years ago, so I'm not sure what her regular style is, but I was very taken by the narration.  She switches back and forth between the characters narrating to some greater being who knows the past/present/future narrating.  I really liked it.  I could hear the narrator in my head. It was James Earl Jones. 

It's a sad, but happy story. Finding the right balance for me between not being a total downer ending and not being a too easily wrapped up happily ever after ending is very difficult.  This book veered more towards the happily ever after in my opinion, but there was some serious tragedy along with it.  But somehow the author wasn't able to capture the relationship between Jim and his sister enough for me to have anything but a very minor reaction.

But the thoughts of a dog?  That gets me every time.

3.5 out of 5

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer (#15, Nonfiction, Alaska)

Steph, Spoon and I have started a new book challenge. Near the end of 2014 Brooklyn Magazine came out with a list titled, The Literary United States: A Map of the Best Book for Every State.  I didn't even have to look at the list to say "Challenge Accepted."

I actually read Into the Wild many years ago.  I went through a Jon Krakauer phase sometime shortly post college.  Initially, I planned to skip this one and just read the books I hadn't previously read.  But whatever whim caused me to pick it up at the library I am thankful for! His writing is so great.  Generally I'm not a fan of the telling of stories not directly related to the story at hand, so when Krakauer went on his "other adventurer" chapters I started to skim. But at some point during my skimming I realized I was reading every word, and not only reading them, but enjoying these tangential stories!

He's such a great writer and I'm so happy I've been reminded of his extreme talent and plan to pick up a new Krakauer very soon.

4.5 out of 5

Friday, October 24, 2014

Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns by Lauren Weisberger (#14, Fiction)

I need to start mixing in some quality reads with all these guilty pleasures.

This book felt thin. Throughout you can sort of guess how things are going to shake out at the end, but you're not really sure why, or the motivations, or why things are happening or happened. It's very fairy tale, then messy, and finally fairy tale again, with a twist of simplicity for extremely complicated circumstances.  She basically uses huge gaps in time to explain away the complication... a bit lazy? 

A disappointment after the first book.

2.5 out of 5.

Hush by Kate White (#13, Fiction)

I told you I would read all she has! This one was even better than The Sixes.

3.5 out of 5.

The Sixes by Kate White (#12, Fiction)

I've always been a sucker for a mystery, starting way back when with my trusty Christopher Pike books.  Now, 20+ years later it's still my go-to. Kate White is exactly what I need when I want a guilty pleasure book.  I will read all she's got.

3.5 out of 5.