Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Books I've Read and Reviewed in 2008

The links from the book titles go to the "The Book Book" blog, where I am now posting my book reviews. Great site - tons of people contributing reviews and well worth checking out!

September

  • Lisa Gardner, "The Killing Hour"
  • Kelly Kirch, "More than Words".
  • Vanessa Jaye, "Felicity Stripped Bare".
  • Iain M. Banks, "Look to Windward". I'm not going to write a full review of this one because I don't think it's fair. It's a hard sci-fi book, and that's not my style. I did find it hard to follow, and until very close to the end I wasn't actually sure what was going on. There were some seriously hilarious sections, but they didn't seem to fit into the plot.
August

I got my Palm involved with tracking my reading, and now I actually KNOW what I've read. :) At this point, I've read 14 new authors since the end of March. Not bad!

  • "The Age of Innocence" by Edith Wharton. Flowery language and yet clear and easy to read as well. Interesting story, both for what it shows and for how much of the relationships it doesn't show - no sex, no courtship details. (eBook via Fictionwise.com)
  • "I'm with Stupid" by Elaine Szewczyk. Strongly chick lit in tone. The plot, frankly, didn't make all that much sense, but it was funny in a lot of parts. I did wish for some sort of character change/resolution but I didn't get it, and the few spots where some WAS added felt forced and fake. (eBook via Fictionwise.com)
  • "The Farseer: Assassin's Apprentice" by Robin Hobb. I didn't expect to like this as much as I did. The cruelty of people to Fitz, the prince's bastard son, was so clearly portrayed, and yet the people felt it was justified. Fitz was always a strong character, to my mind, clear and well-written. I will read more of this author! (eBook via Fictionwise.com)
  • "The Blood Books, Vol. 1" by Tanya Huff. A fair bit of headhopping, but an interesting take on werewolves and vampires, set in Toronto and London, ON. It's actually a compendium of two of her books. (library)
  • "Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said" by Phillip K. Dick. Set in the ""future"" of 1988, it's neat to see how Dick envisioned the future. The destruction and rebuilding of Jason Taverner made great sense to me and I found the style, while a little stiff, easy to read and follow. (eBook via Fictionwise.com)
  • "Currant Events" by Piers Anthony. I used to adore his books, but then I started to feel they were all exactly the same. After years away, I picked this one up. Typical Xanth, all puns, but better and more entertaining than I remember some of the others being. (Kibrary)
  • "K-PAX" by Gene Brewer. I hadn't seen the movie before reading this (I have now) and I really enjoyed it. The tale of a man who is either an alien or deeply delusional. There appears to be a sequel; I will look for it. (Library)
  • "Banewreaker" by Jacqueline Carey. I have read and enjoyed her Kushiel books, but I found this one VERY hard to get into. I think, for me, it's at least partly because the Kushiel books are in first-person and this was in third with multiple points of view. I never quite knew the narrators as well as I did Phedre and Imriel in the Kushiel series. (Library)
July
  • "Remember Me?" by Sophie Kinsella. I loved the first Shopoholic book, but my interest wore off when the main character kept making the same stupid mistakes. THIS book, I loved. I think there are a few plot holes, but I CARED about the protagonist in a way I haven't cared for a character for quite a while. (read in July (22-23rd?), hardcover via library)
  • "The Department of Lost and Found" by Allison Winn Scotch. I wanted to love this. I did like it. A main character dealing with cancer should have been someone for whom I felt sympathy, and I couldn't muster it up much. (read in July, dates lost to the mists of my memory, ebook via Fictionwise.com)
  • "You Suck" by Christopher Moore. My first book of his, but not the last. I love his writing, although I realized when I'd finished that plot-wise this book is rather weak. Didn't notice until I'd finished, though, which tells you something. (started July 19, finished July 21, hardcover via Chapters' discount section)
  • "Atlantic Shift" by Emily Barr. Apparently also released as "Solo". Odd.

June

Again, I am reading but not tracking. Come on, kid, you can do better than this!

  • "Guilty Pleasures" by Laurell K. Hamilton. I've never been much into vampires, and this book didn't change that, but it had its moments. I generally liked the main character although there were times I didn't understand why she did what she did, and it was never explained to me. Still, kept me entertained on the elliptical machine! (started sometime around June 24th, finished June 30th, eBook via Fictionwise.com)
  • "Mindless Eating" by Brian Wansink. SO interesting to see how we can be tricked by size of bowl/plate, amount of food presented, even perceived variety (people eat considerably more M&M candies when there are 10 colours in the bowl, for example, than when there are only 7). I've read it all the way through and am partway through my second read just to soak up more details! (bought June 18 through fictionwise.com, finished June 18, re-reading, eBook)

May

Doing Good by Pamela Morsi. Inconsistent at times, but better than most of what I've read lately. (began reading May 8 or 9, 2008, finished May 10, 2008, library book)

The Paper Marriage by Susan Kay Law. Disappointing to me - the main character's apparent personality transplant made the developing romance unbelievable. (began reading May 1, 2008, finished May 4, 2008, eBook)

April

Again, not so good with the tracking. Oh well. Onward!

"Diary of a Blues Goddess" by Erica Orloff.

"Cranberry Queen" by Kathleen DeMarco. It started out really well, I thought, with a woman freaking out about going to her ex-boyfriend's wedding suddenly blindsided by the car-accident deaths of her parents and brother, but then degenerated into a chance meeting I didn't believe and a bunch of people hanging out together that didn't make sense to me. I was disappointed, I must say.

Yesterday I re-read "Organizing from the Inside Out" by Julie Morgenstern. Good book. I think I've internalized quite a bit of it, which is great, but clutter and organization are issues for me, no doubt. We shall continue to overcome!

In March/April I read/re-read all seven books of Stephen King's "Dark Tower" series. (I hadn't read 5-7 before.) It's a true pleasure to read books and NOT get tripped up by strange word choices or awkwardness. Stephen King's in utter control of his writing toolbox, as he calls it in his "On Writing", and it shows. And it makes reading a delight.

March

What happened? I've read, of course, but I've been bad on the listing!! I will get back into it for April, and will try to catch up if I can figure out what I've missed.

Definitely read "Unpredictable" by Eileen Cook, which was unfortunately a little more predictable than I'd hoped. Still a solid chick lit book, but there's been so much hype about it I was expecting more.

February

  • Nearlyweds by Beth Kendrick (three women who all got married the same weekend but the pastor died before filing their paperwork so their marriages aren't legal; amusing but so light as to be nearly non-existent)
  • Shagpile by Imogen Edward-Jones (a novel of life in the seventies; funny, but probably funnier if I hadn't been a kid in the seventies)
  • La Vie en Rose by Dominique Glocheux (a "things to do" book to help me with my 101 in 1001 list)

January
  • Three knitting-related books, which have gone back to the library so cannot be listed
  • My own 'Life, Love, and a Polar Bear Tattoo' - rereading and polishing
  • I feel like there was at least one novel in here as well, so I'll check the shelves and see what I can recognize!

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