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Showing posts from October, 2013

Quick Review: "Mystic River" by Dennis Lehane

From Goodreads:  When they were children, Sean Devine, Jimmy Marcus, and Dave Boyle were friends. But then a strange car pulled up to their street. One boy got into the car, two did not, and something terrible happened -- something that ended their friendship and changed all three boys forever. Twenty-five years later, Sean is a homicide detective. Jimmy is an ex-con who owns a corner store. And Dave is trying to hold his marriage together and keep his demons at bay -- demons that urge him to do terrible things. When Jimmy's daughter is found murdered, Sean is assigned to the case. His investigation brings him into conflict with Jimmy, who finds his old criminal impulses tempt him to solve the crime with brutal justice. And then there is Dave, who came home the night Jimmy's daughter died covered in someone else's blood. A tense and unnerving psychological thriller, Mystic River is also an epic novel of love and loyalty, faith and family, in which people irrevocably mar

Mailbox Monday (4)

Mailbox Monday is a traveling meme where you can showcase the awesome books you received each week.  This month, Mailbox Monday is being hosted by Gina at Book Dragon's Lair .  I really need to stay away from NetGalley but I just can't resist all the good books! From NetGalley: The Splendour Falls by Susanna Kearsley Empress of the Night by Eva Stachniak What did you get this week?

Mini-Reviews (2)

The White Princess by Philippa Gregory I am not a huge fan of Philippa Gregory and yet I just keep reading her books.  I am so intrigued by the War of the Roses that I just can't stay away from her Cousin's War series.  Elizabeth of York is a fascinating historical figure and I can't help feeling bad for her in both real life and this story.  I must say that I really enjoyed this book.  This is probably the first book I've read where Elizabeth Woodville seemed like a pretty nice person and a very loving mother; she was portrayed in a completely different manner in this book than in others I've read.  I enjoyed that but I'm not sure if it's an accurate depiction or not.  Also, while I loved the fact that Gregory had one of the 'princes in the tower' survive, I was annoyed that she asserts in her author's note that she believes that this version of the story is correct.  I feel like sometimes she makes a lot of assertions that she doesn&#

Top Ten Character Names that I Love

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish . This week's topic is:  Top Ten Character Names that I Love  It was really hard to pick only 10 because there are a lot of names I love.  Most of these I wouldn't consider naming one of my kids but I love them just the same. 1.) Kira from We the Living by Ayn Rand- I like this name but I think the character made me love it more. 2.) Eleanor from Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen- Eleanor is a name that I wouldn't mind naming a child.  It's so pretty! 3.) James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser from Outlander by Diana Gabaldon -How can you not love this name?! 4.) Hazel Grace from The Fault in Our Stars by John Green- I wasn't ever a huge fan of the name Hazel until I read this book. 5.) Jonas from The Giver by Lois Lowery- Great name! 6.) Andrei Bolkonskii from War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy- I think I had a crush on this character when I first read War and Peace and have lov

Mailbox Monday (3)

Mailbox Monday is a traveling meme and this month it is hosted by Gina at Book Dragon's Lair . I haven't done a book haul post in a couple of weeks!  I have just been trying to catch up on library books and review books I already have but I did get two new books this week. Ebooks For Review (from HFVBT): A Divided Inheritance by Deborah Swift The Harlot's Tale by Sam Thomas Gifted:   Dark Places by Gillian Flynn Mariana by Susanna Kearsley   I really enjoy both of these author's works so I am excited to read them! What books did you pick up this week?

Review: "The Loyalist's Wife" by Elaine Cougler

Synopsis:  When American colonists resort to war against Britain and her colonial attitudes, a young couple caught in the crossfire must find a way to survive. Pioneers in the wilds of New York State, John and Lucy face a bitter separation and the fear of losing everything, even their lives, when he joins Butler’s Rangers to fight for the King and leaves her to care for their isolated farm. As the war in the Americas ramps up, ruffians roam the colonies looking to snap up Loyalist land. Alone, pregnant, and fearing John is dead, Lucy must fight with every weapon she has. With vivid scenes of desperation, heroism, and personal angst, Elaine Cougler takes us back to the beginnings of one great country and the planting of Loyalist seeds for another. The Loyalist’s Wife transcends the fighting between nations to show us the individual cost of such battles. The Loyalist’s Wife is the first of three books in The Loyalist Trilogy. The Loyalist’s Luck is scheduled for rele

Top Ten Books I Was "Forced" to Read

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.   This week's topic:  Top Ten Books I was "Forced" to Read  (either by teachers, friends, other bloggers, book club)       1.) The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon- I technically wasn't forced to read this but it was a book club pick one month and I absolutely loved it.  I probably never would have read it because the synopsis didn't sound that interesting to me. 2.) A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley- I had to read this in 12th grad honors English as a companion to King Lear. At the time I completely hated it but I wouldn't mind picking it up again in the future. 3.) All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque- This was required for one of my college classes and I really enjoyed it.  I have read it a couple times now and it's definitely a favorite of mine. 4.) Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist- Another book club pick that I loved. 

Mini Reviews (1)

I've decided to start posting mini-reviews every now and again.  A lot of times there are books I read that I just don't have enough to talk about to warrant a whole review or even a shorter 'quick review'.        Six Days in Leningrad by Paullina Simons   I loved The Bronze Horseman and this memoir chronicles the trip that Paullina Simons took to Russia to do research for it.  Simons is originally from Russia and this trip was her first time back after leaving when she was a child.  It was a sad but fascinating look at what it's like to revisit one's childhood.  Her memories didn't always coincide with reality and it seemed to be quite shocking for her when this was brought to her attention.  I want to visit Russia so bad and this book only encouraged that desire.  It's only available as a kindle ebook which is kind of a hassle and there were a lot of typos but I would still recommend this book.  4 stars. This book is part of my pers

Review: "A Wilder Rose" by Susan Wittig Albert

From Goodreads:  In 1928, Rose Wilder Lane—world traveler, journalist, much-published magazine writer—returned from an Albanian sojourn to her parents’ Ozark farm. Almanzo Wilder was 71, Laura 61, and Rose felt obligated to stay and help. To make life easier, she built them a new home, while she and Helen Boylston transformed the farmhouse into a rural writing retreat and filled it with visiting New Yorkers. Rose sold magazine stories to pay the bills for both households, and despite the subterranean tension between mother and daughter, life seemed good. Then came the Crash. Rose’s money vanished, the magazine market dried up, and the Depression darkened the nation. That’s when Laura wrote her autobiography, “Pioneer Girl,” the story of growing up in the Big Woods of Wisconsin, on the Kansas prairie, and by the shores of Silver Lake. The rest—the eight remarkable books that followed—is literary history. But it isn’t the history we thought we knew. For the surprising

August/September Wrap Up

October is here, can you believe it?!  I am so excited for the next couple of months and all of the holidays coming up!  I still have to find a costume for baby girl but I can not decide what to dress her up as! I never got around to writing an August wrap up post so this is going to be a combined post.  So far this year, I have read 72 books which is only 3 books away from my goal of 75.  Yippee!  I really wish I could make it to a 100 books this year but there is no way that is going to happen.  I only read 4 books in August and 5 books in September so at that rate I'll be lucky to hit 90 books by the end of the year. I just don't have as much free time to read as I used to.  Heck, we moved at the beginning of August and I STILL have not unpacked my books yet.  There are just empty bookshelves in my living room right now! August books: 1.) The Age of Desire by Jennie Fields  2.) Song of the River by Sue Harrison  3.) His Last Mistress by Andrea Zuvich  4.) The Boleyn