#6 on my 2011 list of resolutions is read one book a month and so far this year I’ve done pretty well (three months in and already I’ve ready 7 books) – helped tremendously by a vacation and new-found addiction to the Hunger Games triology… here’s what I’ve read:
- Little Bee by Chris Cleave | This was a Christmas gift that I ended up taking on vacation. It was super intense and I ended up speed reading the last section as I wasn’t sure I was going to like the outcome [I didn’t]. Good book but not my cup of tea, I prefer an escape, not one that makes me remember the world is a scary place filled with many injustices. I’d recommend it to people who don’t mind the intensity of the story or who like novels that make them question what is going on with the world.
- Sensible Shoes: A Novel by Sharon Garlough Brown | This was a book we read for book club and while I was very skeptical when I first started reading it about whether or not I’d like it, I ended up learning a lot through the reading and the discussion we had about it. While I felt the characters were more charicatures of the main chracters and the type of women they were representing, I think that was actually helpful in showing readers how to relate to them and see in them parts of themselves. I’d recommend it to anyone looking to kick start a spirital journey of their own.
- Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins | I’d held off on reading this series, scared off by the teen lit categorization, but if the Twilight series didn’t scare me off, I’m not sure why this did. But like Twilight, I’m glad I didn’t start reading them until the series was complete because once I was started, I was hooked and didn’t stop until the end of the third book.
- Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins | Loved this one as much as the first though I always felt like Katniss should be smarter than she actually is, she’s a survivor but she is super dense about the rest of life.
- Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins | Way more war-oriented and a lot less relationshippy than the other two, but a great end to the series. I only wish Katniss had been able to keep herself mentally intact throughout the whole book but then, that’s what going to battle does to a soldier.
- Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Stout | This had the potential to be a great book. Stout is a wonderful story teller but I didn’t like the way the story was told – I felt like I was missing big parts to make it complete. But then, I never liked short stories and this is basically a bunch of short stories with one shared character who enters the story line to varying degrees and that character isn’t extremely likable until the very last story. I’m sure this would be a great book for many readers, but if you aren’t a fan of short stories, stay away.
- A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick | I had no idea what to expect with this book, I spied it at the library and remembered I’d read a recommendation somewhere (online or in Entertainment Weekly, I’m not sure) so I picked it up. I don’t normally like period books but this one was set at the turn of the 20th century in rural Wisconsin and that actually appealled to me. Unfortuntely, the main characters were not at all likeable and I guess I really do like a protagonist I could imagine myself getting along with so I was disappointed. There was a ton of death and peculiar, uncomprehensible behavior that happened, particularly for a small town. Read with caution.
I also started but could not finish Agnes and the Hitman (Jennifer Crusie) – I knew five pages in that I would never get into despite the recommendation from my friend, Tracey. Alas. I will also sheepishly admit that I checked out a Vampire Diaries book and skimmed it, reading enough to know I prefer the television series (apparently I can totally relate to a teenage girl in love with a vampire).
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Have you tried to read a biography of someone you really like (or hate) to see if you truely know who they are? At least it would be something different to read.
Great suggestion – do you have any recommendations? I’ve read a couple biographies – the one that comes to mind offhand is Double Take by Kevin Michael Connolly – a skiier/skateboarder who was born without legs. I loved it!
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