Good grief - cannot believe it's mid-March and I haven't written since December. Likely you all have stopped checking in here to see if I have anything witty or amazingly funny to share with you. My apologies if you do happen to still be checking in - but I had to check out for a bit. No. I wasn't at the nut farm. I was just living life. And reading.
I fell sick for about a month after the holidays which resulted in me watching entirely too much TV. I swore I'd seen every episode of every show on every channel. I decided to start reading. I used to love to read and did so frequently, but over the years with raising kids and working, I'd let my favorite past time slip through my fingers. As with all things I do in life, I took to reading again in January and have.not.stopped. My goal was 52 books in a year. See - I can't have a hobby - I must set goals for myself and turn it into a challenge. That's the problem with me. But I figure reading is fairly harmless, so off I set. Below is a list of the books I've read since I picked up the first one in January and very small snippet of my thoughts on each.
The Help by Kathryn Stockett - A rhythmic story that takes you back just a few short years in time to the days of segregation and the onset of the civil rights movement. Quick and easy to read, filled with excitement and drama.
The Chatham School Affair by Thomas H. Cook - after drudging through 150 or so pages of this book, I finally declared it a L.O.S.E.R. and stopped reading it. The story hops around between the past and present about every other page making it near impossible to follow and 150 pages into it, you still have no clue what the point is nor has the author led up to anything that causes you to want to continue to read.
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins - A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I read these three books back to back in just a few days and could not put them down! Being classified in the adolescent category, they are also a quick and easy read - full of twists and turns and action packed!
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson and Reg Keeland - H.OR.R.I.B.L.E. Why anyone would actually write a novel about this kind of fucked up sexual abuse and misuse of power is beyond me. The first 200+ pages were so painfully boring that I actually napped about 8 times in that 2 day period it took me to get through them. As I progressed into the book, I was horribly disturbed and by the end, sorry I'd ever read it. I will not be reading the other two in the trilogy. And if you do read this book - just tear out the first 200 or so pages - they're irrelevant to the overall story.
Bitter is the New Black by Jen Lancaster - a light and sarcastic tale of an uppity bitch who finds herself unemployed. Jen Lancaster is a blogger turned published author and this story was a hoot. I wouldn't say it's literature at its finest - but it was funny and a great relief after reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
The Mitford Series by Jan Karon - there are 9 books in the series - I read the first 5. I have the other 4 but needed to take a break from them so stopped at the end of 5 for now. I think this is in the Christian category and while it's not adventurous or mysterious and doesn't necessarily leave you hanging onto the edge of your seat like The Hunger Games - it is a sweet little tale of a darling little town and the local Episcopalian priest and the other residents. I found myself so caught up in the characters that I just kept reading one book after another. I'll definitely return to the last 4 in the series!
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden - likely the most eloquent book I've read thus far. Absolutely beautiful tale of a Geisha's life. I thought the book was a true story and even told several people it was - but turns out it's not. Regardless - it reads as if it is. Highly recommend this one!
The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls - a devastatingly wonderful true story about the author's childhood growing up with her insane mother and alcoholic father - never really having a home and always living "on the skeedaddle." Your heart will ache for Jeannette and her siblings - and also for her mother and father who just could never get their shit together.
Half-Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls - while this is Jeannette's second book, this one is about her grandmother's life and honestly, helps you to rather make sense of her mother as you got to know her in The Glass Castle. While certainly not near as good as The Glass Castle, Jeannette does a great job of "painting the picture" so you get a real feel for her grandmother's life and how she lived.
So that's it. 14 books in 12 weeks. I'm ahead of schedule! Now, what to read next.......