Sunday, October 31, 2010


Fallen (Fallen, #1)Fallen by Lauren Kate

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Really good book but the last few chapters were extremely chaotic and a little hard to follow. For the majority of the book it stayed at a steady, intriguing and reliable pace. When the climax of the book hit it came with a bang. An overload of information that wasn't unexpected, but was a bit jumbled. Overall, the story and the characters were romantic and intriguing. I really look forward to the next book in the series but I hope the entire book maintains that appealing pace and not the vroom/screech/vroom/screech I felt with the first one.

Cool book cover too!

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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Specials (Uglies #3)

SpecialsSpecials by Scott Westerfeld

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

What the what?! I clearly set my expectations too high for the finale of this trilogy. While the whole of the book and the series was pretty good and an unusual perspective from the "bad guy", even if she was unknowingly "bad", I mostly enjoyed it. But the ending fell so flat I had to scrape it off the floor.

I would rate the series as a whole at a 4 star. I really enjoyed that the author gave the reader so many perspectives of this society from Tally's view, from an innocent ugly, to a bubbleheaded pretty, to an icy, cruel special. I haven't read a book that gives you a first person story of being a bad guy. Granted, as I stated earlier, she was programmed in a sense to be cruel so seeing her internal battle with it was pretty cool.

I would really like to read more by this author!

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Monday, October 18, 2010

16 Lighthouse Road (Cedar Cove, #1)16 Lighthouse Road by Debbie Macomber

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

My first Debbie Macomber book. I both really liked and disliked this book. It was like a soap opera with many different stories tied together. It ranged from young, hurting love to divorced mature adults dating. It was all over the board. I liked most of it but found myself skimming over Olivia and Charlottes stories. I absolutely loved the story of Ian and Cecilia, that could have been it's own 5 star book. Justine's story fascinated and infuriated me, what an idiot but glad she finally ended up how she did. Poor Grace, what a hellacious situation to be a part of, my sympathy went to her the most!

I'll probably read the next in the series...but not anytime too soon. That was a lot of drama!!

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Distant Shores

Distant ShoresDistant Shores by Kristin Hannah

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I don't like giving bad reviews to authors I like and it isn't really fair to necessarily give her writing a low rating, it's just that I didn't like the story. Let's just say if I were in the main characters shoes (Elizabeth Shore) the story would be completely different than what I just read. I would not have tolerated what she did when it happened many years ago, I simply would not have been where she is at this point in her life. I cannot relate.

I'm not giving up on Hannah, I just can't read stories like this, they absolutely infuriate me!

P.S. I refuse to call this book a romance.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Double Standards

Double StandardsDouble Standards by Judith McNaught

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I guess you could call this your run of the mill romance but with an 80's corporate edge. Think of a powerful CEO flirting and flaunting around the office, smoking indoors, cream colors and shoulder pads. It's kind of funny but really, it's a fun, powerful romance filled with secrets, deceit and forgiveness.

This was my first Judith McNaught book and I will most certainly be reading more of her books!

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Mockingjay (Hunger Games #3)

Mockingjay (Hunger Games, #3)Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Well. I guess I'm neither overly ecstatic nor let down. **UPDATE - A Few Days Later** I can't stop thinking about the book. Undoubtedly this was my favorite in the series. I think she wrapped up this tragic storyline in the best possible way. It was a deep, dark book. I loved it...

I can agree with the lower ratings I've seen because the romance element was a back story, not really much going on there. For me, that was actually okay. The bigger part was fighting, fighting, fighting. Fighting to regain control of some many things...your mind, your freedom, your land and your life. It was very intense and incredibly sad, but when you're fighting a war where anything goes, tragedy is going to happen.

Thinking back to the beginning of the series, I can't imagine anyone was too surprised that these nasty, deadly, deceitful war games took place. The Hunger Games set you up to understand you really can't trust anyone and that was the theme all the way up to the end.

I've resigned to accept the ending, no hard feelings. Sure it would have been romantic to drag out the story of who ended up together but it would have taken away from the whole book when I think more about it. It didn't dramatize lip locks and embraces at all in this book, it was just like Gale said, that Katniss would end up with who she thinks she could survive with the best. And I think it worked out perfectly, how could it not for these two?! (I won't spoil it!!)
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Friday, October 8, 2010


MatchedMatched by Ally Condie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First off, I won this advanced reading copy from Goodreads giveaway....thanks a million!

Who knew that learning cursive could be so romantic and moving?! (You'll have to read to see what I mean!)

Cassia Reyes lives in a society where choices are made for the citizens. The Officials decide what you eat, how much you exercise, what your vocation will be, what music, poems and books you can listen to and read...even who you will be matched to in life. When Cassia goes to the Matching Ceremony she is matched with her long time best friend Xander. Days later Cassia plugs in Xander's data card to see more about her lifetime match; but it's not only Xander she sees, she also sees another childhood friend, Ky Markham, appear on the screen. A mistake? Cassia is intrigued by this, not only because the Officials never make a mistake, but by the mysterious Ky himself that moved to the boroughs from the Outer Provinces.

Cassia's curiosity draws her to Ky and he to her. They grow closer despite the fact that they are breaking every rule created by the Officials to protect the citizens. Ky teaches Cassia simple things that she never would have learned otherwise, like writing, thinking and learning that love can exist outside of her ordered Match. That there are others out there who are fighting the control the Officials have...for freedom.

I loved this book, it has some small similarities to The Hunger Games and to The Giver being that they are all dystopian in nature. There isn't the action that is in HUNGER GAMES but there is more human depth and awareness of feelings than THE GIVER. I actually like Matched better than both of those books. It's brilliant, I love the soft and sweet romance that slowly develops. I love the passion the resonates from Cassia and Ky when they figure out the only way they can be together is in a free society, not the society created to "keep them safe".

I hadn't realized this was a series when I received this book. I think this series could be huge. It's has elements of what's popular in fiction these days, young romance, dystopia and question the all-controlling society. It's good, real good, I hope this book becomes a success!

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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (Millenium #1)

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1)The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

There was very little I liked about this book. I'm not a big murder/mystery fan anyway and especially not when it degrades women. In my opinion, the author (though now deceased) seemed to have a low opinion of women in this book. Between loose women, weak women and women with power who "purr like cats" in the limelight, I wanted to toss the book away. Women were beaten, abused and mind screwed. Puh-lease!

Little and big inconsistencies bothered me too. How about the fact that there were two main stories that ended up having little to do with each other in the end. And how about the fact that it was entirely too predictable?! Ugh.

I can respect that people love this kind of story but I personally don't get it. I'm not even sure why I finished the book. I don't have too hard of a time abandoning books but maybe I was hoping there would be a great revelation at the end. Nope. I could care less to read the next book in the "Millenium" series to see what's next.

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Olive Kitteridge

Olive KitteridgeOlive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Mm, mm, mm, what to say about this book. May contain possible spoilers...

After I finished the book I read some other reviews and noticed a lot of people call it a series of short stories tied together by the books namesake, Olive Kitteridge.

Olive is an old woman who is either the main character in several chapters (short stories) or a sideline supporting character in some others. Olive is a crotchety old woman who snaps at her sweet tempered husband, is a distant mother to her son, and a force-to-be-reckoned-with citizen in her small town of Crosby, Maine. Overall I think Olive, while crotchety, is a woman who doesn't know how to communicate the softness that does exist in her heart.

I found the book to be depressing and moody. Everything from anorexia, hostage situations, marital affairs, suicide contemplation, divorce, death, etc. is touched on in this book. Olive, as I mentioned, seems to be somehow involved in each of these whether it happens to her or she is mentioned in or witness to it. The characters are all facing somber times in their lives be it the young and broken hearted or the old and broken hearted.

I do give it to the author that she writes about the ugly in people's lives and on some levels you can relate. But you also find yourself looking away as quite possibly any human would in the face of an awkward, depressing situation of a stranger (be honest with yourself on that statment).

I cannot recommend this book for three main reasons:

1) It's depressing (I do not like depressing books!). You'd have to be in the right mood to read it.

2) I had a hard time keeping up with skipping back and forth between present time and past memories, thinking I had missed a page.

3) Did I mention it's depressing?

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The Time Travelers Wife

The Time Traveler's WifeThe Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Would have been 5 stars but the ending fell a little flat for me. There was some excessive story-line that could have been removed, it slowly deflated like 10 day old birthday balloon. In the beginning it was exciting, fresh, fun, but after the novelty and brilliance of it wore off...fffbbbbttttt.
Excellent read for most of the book, very creative writing. It sure did jump back and forth a lot in time, duh, it's a time travel book but I managed not to get lost and confused.

On to the movie and I have an inkling that the movie cannot do the book justice. (P.S. Just watched the stunk.)

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Water For Elephants

Water for ElephantsWater for Elephants by Sara Gruen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I had no idea what this book was about when I chose it. If someone told me it was an entertaining read about the circus during the 1930 depression era I may have put it back down. I ended up really liking this book, I could not put it down. It flits back and forth from the past and present day Jacob Jankowski and how his life changed one summer after being told some grave news and then jumping a circus train. Fantastic, emomtional read!

I heard it's being made into a movie with Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon, bad casting if you ask me!

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The Giver (The Giver #1)

The Giver (The Giver, #1)The Giver by Lois Lowry

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I think this is what would happen if you crossed democrats with communists. Okay, low blow, but there is no war, there is no single feeling entity, it's big governemnt (in a sense), it's all about community and what each and every individual must contribute to it. In some aspects it's great that everyone does contribute, but to have no choice in it is down right freaky!

***from here, there are spoilers***

You are told not to have feelings, you are told what to contribute to the community, you are told who to marry, you are assigned children upon signing up for one (they do no procreate as a married couple), everyone is equal, you do not lie or you will be "released", there is no skin color,in fact, there is NO color. There is no free will or choice, period!

I found this book to be both extremly disturbing yet highly fascinating. I was glad to see by the end of the book that someone realized that choice is what humans are really all about. I truly liked this book, it' a classic simply for the debate it brings up between lovers and haters.

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The Beekeepers Apprentice (Mary Russell #1)

The Beekeeper's Apprentice (Mary Russell, #1)The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I'm not a huge mystery fan but I try to expand my choices to many genres. This book was a classic type mystery. It's a story of young Mary Russell and how she comes to be an apprentice of the one and only Sherlock Holmes. They solve mysteries from a wife suspicious of her husbands illness, to a kidnapped American senators daughter, to a plot to kill both Holmes and Russell.
I have never read anything about Sherlock Holmes so I have nothing to compare this writing to. I liked it, but sometimes I think it was a little too over my head. Long words, French verbs, chess, mysteries, math...all things that don't top my list of fun things to do. It was at times hard to concentrate on but there were times I was drawn into the fast paced action sequences.

Still, it was an enjoyable read even though it took me nearly three weeks to read.

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Ella Minnow Pea

Ella Minnow PeaElla Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ha ha ha! I loved it. This is a dark, quirky, witty and humorous epistolary novel about a fictional island off the coast of South Carolina. When a series of letters start to fall from a cenotaph of the great Nevin Nallop, whom the island was named for, a series of strange laws arises forbidding the island residents from speaking or writing them. People who say any of the forbidden letters are reprimanded and after a final offense are kicked off the island or face execution! In order to preserve the island and bring back the ousted citizens, Ella Minnow Pea must come up with a sentence that contains all 26 letters of the alphabet but only in 32 letters or less.

I want to call it cutesy but there is death, divorce, betrayal and totalitarianism in small doses. It's definitely worth a read to see how the citizens come up with brainy ways of communicating without the taboo letters.

Most importantly, have a dictionary handy for this lexicon of copious and ostentatious writing. :o)

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Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and SweetHotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If this isn't an eye opening book, I don't know what is.

This is a story of a 1st generation Chinese American boy named Henry in 1942 Seattle. During World War II his father wants to ensure no one confuses him for the ostracized Japanese and sends his son to an all white school with an "I Am Chinese" button on his clothing. There he meets 2nd generation Japanese American girl named Keiko. Though Henry's father has a passionate hatred for the Japanese, Henry develops a sweet, deep and secretive friendship with her.

Then the president of the USA signs an executive order to round up Japanese Americans and "evacuate" them to internment camps across the western half of the United States. Henry must come to grips with losing his new best friend while trying to understand why or how such an appalling act could be happening to the Japanese Americans.

This book was certainly an eye opener as I already stated. I had heard of internment camps for the Japanese, but so very little of it. The author clearly stated at the end of this book he had no intention of laying blame on anyone or to sway the reader to sympathy either. He did a remarkable job of simply stating what happened with no political jabs. He tells a beautiful story of friendship and life during those difficult times. I can tell you this book has certainly inspired me to learn more on this topic.

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BloodrootBloodroot by Amy Greene

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I can only think to classify this as a story-tellin' fictional read. There isn't a whole lot of dialogue but there is a whole lot of storytelling from six different perspectives. You can't call it a novel, you can't call it fantasy, certainly not chick-lit or magical. It's downright good story tellin'!

It's a telling of people involved in the life of Myra Mayes-Odum. A wild and spirited mountain girl of the Appalachia region. We read about Myra from the perspective of a child hood friend who loves her with all his heart but the feelings are not mutual. We hear from Myra's granny who raises Myra and knows her wild spirit cannot be tamed much like Myra's mama who met her maker very early on in Myra's life. We skip around in time and hear the story from Myra's twin's and the hardship they endure when they are taken from their mama. We hear from Myra herself and what she went through and perhaps some closure on why she ended up where she did. And finally we hear from John Odum, Myra's husband who paid his dues with a violent incident that set a path for change in all their lives.

I didn't really think the publishers book description was all that fitting to what the story actually was about. My own perception though. The jacket claims this book is about the magic "touch" that is in Myra's family. There really isn't much "magic" in this book. This book at times is depressing, moody and haunting. With that said, I couldn't put it down. Some things that bugged me were that the paragraphs were insanely long, often one of two paragraphs per page. There aren't chapters, there are books with all the different first person stories. It was hard to find a place to take a break for the night. Also, the "Appalachia" language was strange at first. I sure felt dumb-downed a bit! LOL

With the negatives I pointed out, I have to say the author is a fantastic teller of stories. I will be anxious to see what she may write for her next book. She certainly is unique.

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Winter Garden

Winter GardenWinter Garden by Kristin Hannah

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is one of those books that reminds me how much I truly love historical fiction!

Anya Whitson is a Russian immigrant who moves to the United States after marrying her American husband. Anya is very hard woman who shows no love to her two daughters, Meredith and Nina, throughout their lives. Nina is an unsettled world traveling photographer and Meredith is a workaholic wife and mother who remains home to run the family orchard and never does anything for herself, it's always for others.

When Evan Whitson, husband to Anya and loving father to Nina and Meredith suffers a stroke and is not expected to live, he makes Anya promise to finish the fairy tales she would occasionally tell to her daughters when they were young. He also makes Meredith and Nina promise to listen to their mom and support her after he is gone. Not to give up on their mother like they have felt she had given up on them.

Through shots of whiskey and much prodding, Anya slowly opens up to her daughters and begins to tell a Russian fairy tale of a handsome prince and the black knights. As the story goes on Meredith and Nina realize that perhaps this isn't just any fairy tale, could this be the key to learning of their Russian mothers past? Is this the key to their mom's ice cold heart melting and finally having a relationship with her daughters?

This is my first Kristin Hannah book and I loved it. Definitely an emotional book that takes you all over the world from the past to the present. Excellent read!

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The Last Time I Was Me

The Last Time I Was MeThe Last Time I Was Me by Cathy Lamb

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Can't figure out how many stars to give this, perhaps by the end of this review I'll figure it out.

The main character, Jeanne Stewart, is a broken woman who as the most creative smart mouth but also the most shattered of broken hearts. She doesn't take crap from anyone but goes home alone and cries and drinks herself to oblivion every day.

Part of me really likes Jeanne Stewart, she's sassy, smart and not afraid to speak what's on her mind. But then she comes across as a feminist and incredibly sarcastic and pushes and pushes, too much so and I'm not sure she is someone I would like. However when you read on and get to know the Jeanne who is incredibly caring and wants to give all her heart to those she loves, even if from a distance, I really start to like her.

There is one portion of the book that is so morally wrong I'm having a hard time accepting it. I won't spoil it but it goes against every moral fiber I have. If I were in that mortiferous situation, I would like to think I would obey what is ethically right. But do you risk so many other lives in the process over fixing something so tremendously evil in the first place?

I understand what it is to feel one thing on the inside but come across completely different on the outside. Jeanne Stewart is really an exaggeration and yet a replica of almost every woman. We are incredibly sensitive on the inside but sometimes the things we say and do don't accurately portray our true selves. For that, I applaud the book. Yes, very much over the top at times, far fetched and ridiculous, but the wit and humor and the tears that flowed from reading this book will touch your heart.

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Going Rogue: An American Life

Going Rogue: An American LifeGoing Rogue: An American Life by Sarah Palin

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I'll start off by saying I'm not giving this five stars because I happen to have voted her ticket in 2008. I'm not giving it five stars because I'm trying to make her ratings look better. I'm giving it five stars because it spells out everything the mostly biased media chose to ignore or mislead people on. I can't say Sarah Palin was one of my favorite people once I started reading it. I admit I started to get sick of seeing her on TV, felt disappointed in how things went with the election. I felt like John McCain had truly chosen the wrong VP pick at the time. But after hearing Sarah's side of the story, I can totally understand why she was chosen.

The woman is nothing short of remarkable, incredible and all those other magnificent adjectives. It started pissing me off that so little of her accomplishments were heralded by the mostly biased media during the campaign. The way she was portrayed by most of the news networks, you would have thought McCain and his camp had pulled her and her "hillbilly" family from the bottom of an oil barrel. That couldn't be further from the truth. People want to tout her as an idiot, an unschooled hick from way up north where all they are concerned about is hunting, snow shoeing and drilling oil to “kill the bears”. Again, totally misleading.

She was more bipartisan as a governor than any of those congressmen and senate creeps in DC. When she came into office as governor, she cleared out the bad politics; Democrat AND Republican thank you very much. I think most people believe there are a lot of dirty people in the oil industry and I'm not speaking of the guys doing the actual drilling. I'm talking of back room buy-outs of senate and congressman, in Alaska alone. Sarah took on these greedy bastards and succeeded in doing what no other Alaskan governor has done with these oil as the Alaskan people want, this is our state, not your money making machine to do as you see fit. Go Sarah!

I also admit being utterly disappointed in Sarah for leaving her elected position as governor early. Again, after hearing her version of that story, I understand again and I believe it has nothing to do with greed. I won't give away the answer on why she left, but I can't blame her.

In all honesty, I think Sarah Palin could be the next president of our great country. I didn't feel that way before reading this book, but now I do. Sarah can truly be bipartisan, Sarah can tell those good old boy politicians to take a hike, and Sarah wants free enterprise, not huge government bail outs and bigger government. America is a nation that should rely on the private sector to ride through these economic storms, not by government bailouts to too large companies that in all rights need to fail so that better suited companies can rise up to the challenge.

I am sold on Sarah Palin; she's a person for all people. They just need to look past the biased, liberal agenda stories written and told by people who sold their souls to the devil to make her look bad. It makes me feel very ashamed that the country I love was so swayed by the narrow minded and hateful media.

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The Forgotten Garden

The Forgotten GardenThe Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A novel about a little girl lost and four generations of stories trying to tie it all together. Spanning from the early 1900's to 2005, this is a wonderful and gripping telling of three Mountrachet women who have sad and dark pasts. Secrets are unraveled and reveal tragedy, loyalty, deception and ultimate sacrifices for family bonds that are too deep to simply be ignored.

I loved this book. It's beautiful and tragic all at the same time. It was great being transported from the early 1900's to 1975 to 2005. The manner in which the author described each of the ladies in their time is classic. I loved each of the supporting characters created, they really helped the story along. There wasn't much about this book I didn't like!

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The Girl Who Chased the Moon

The Girl Who Chased the MoonThe Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I'm so pleased to see that Sarah Addison Allen came back to her magical writing as she did in Garden Spells. This woman has such an incredible knack for describing sight, sound and feelings with food. What better combination can a book have than love and sugar?!

Combine some magic, lots of romance, a bit of mystery, some elusive lights glowing in the woods, tasty sweets and what do you have? The perfect recipe called The Girl Who Chased The Moon.

And on a side alive, Sawyer to me was the same Sawyer from the show Lost. Hot dog! Woo-wee! Hubba hubba!

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Spoken From The Heart

Spoken from the HeartSpoken from the Heart by Laura Bush

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is Laura Bush’s story and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s a wonderful look into an obviously historical span of time. Let it be known this is not a book about President Bush; this is about Mrs. Bush and her view on first her and then their life.

The book starts off with the early part of her life in Midland, Texas and it was somewhat of an average tale of growing up but with the sadness of her mother’s many, many miscarriages, explaining why Mrs. Bush was an only child. She also speaks of the horrific time when she was in a car crash that killed a friend.

I was fascinated mostly by her experience with President Bush’s first run and defeat as a congressman in Texas and then his run and win as Texas Governor. Of course from there we know he ran and won the presidency for eight years and that’s when I was hooked to the core of my being.

I can't help but think people who didn't know anything about Laura Bush though that she was some kind of submissive wife who "stood by her man". I think people will be pleasantly surprised at how much she accomplished in her time as first lady. She wasn't out there to boast any type of political agenda. Mrs. Bush is a proactive woman with a compassionate heart for helping those in need.

There were parts of the book that brought me to tears; 9-11, sending our troops to war, the loss of our solders, genocide in Africa, Hurricane Katrina, fighting for women’s rights in Afghanistan and the list goes on. Mrs. Bush has a quick wit and humor that had me laughing out loud even as I read her book in public. She also very briefly stated her distaste for the hatred and mockery that was directed at her husband by both the press and politicians in D.C. I thought she handled it gracefully and never got down to their level.

The funniest part of the book in my opinion was when she spoke of the Russian’s assumption that the president has control in that the media says about him. In fact, one Russian reporter asked President Bush if he really has no power in the media being negative about him, then how did he fire Dan Rather? It’s funny, but it also shows you that the Russian-controlled media lead their people to believe that our President has such a power.

I appreciated her insight on how they handled such negatively as our county was fighting two wars. Their daughter Barbara Bush, who was attending Yale, was told by a teacher’s assistant that he would only give her an A in the class if she asked her father not to go to war. Or when Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid talked to the media saying President Bush was “dangerous”, a “liar” and a “loser”. I understand that everyone is entitled to their opinion, but for people in such high political positions to speak so ferociously speaks little of them. They are as classless as they think their President was.

On that subject I wouldn’t condone any politician of any party to denigrate our Commander in Chief in such a manner. Not only does it look small and petty, it speaks volumes to our allies. If we can’t attempt to get along in our own country how can we be expected to create peace in countries that so desperately need it? I think it’s disgusting whether it be against our former President or our current President. Grow up D.C.!

After reading Mrs. Bush’s first account experience of her time in the White House I am more than eager to get my hands on all former president and first lady’s memoirs. I think it’s ignorant for anyone to assume what they hear from the media is actually how it happened for any president or first lady. Mrs. Bush outlined many incidents where the media was quick to judge or edit out important parts of a storyline. Doggone media!

Five stars because I'll likely read it again and pass it along to others who may be interested in reading it.

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Magic Hour

Magic HourMagic Hour by Kristin Hannah

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wonderful! A surprising tale of a little girl found alone, an ostracized child psychologist who comes home to help her, the homecoming-queen-turned-cop sister, the flirtatious and wildly handsome doctor who has lost a lot in his past and a quirky town who stands by them all amidst a nationwide media frenzy. Everyone wants to know more about this little girl and the renowned-turned-shunned (and misunderstood) physchologist who is committed to helping her.

This story is filled with heartache, love lost and found, growing and learning about themselves, and sticking together as a community to protect their own. Lovely, lovely story!

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The Glass Castle

The Glass CastleThe Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Words escape me as I sit here pondering what I just read. This is the first memoir I've ever read, I've always had the assumption too much fiction was pumped in for the green. Perhaps there were embellishments in Ms. Walls' story, but do you recall stories from your childhood with vigor and excitement and a little garnish on the truth? I think the answer is yes for a lot of people.

This is an excellent, sad, heart breaking story of poverty, reckless parenting and the abusive lifestyle the author was raised in. By the end you are absolultey cheering for her to make it, to beat the odds. In all respects, she is an amazing person with a powerful story to tell. All I can think to say after reading it is, "you go girl!" LOL

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The Kite Runner

The Kite RunnerThe Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

One of the many reviews I've read on this book states that it's a novel that sticks with you for a while...that's exactly what it does. I wanted to give it three stars for it's disturbing and some times unbelievable content but it's a book that truly deserves more. Yes, it's disturbing, but it's life for an Afghani; to an extent. I love the historical fiction genre and for that it gets points from me. There were portions that were a little too fantasized and for me that was mostly Assef. I hated Assef and that's exactly what the author intended to do no doubt, but I found him too be a little too farfetched.

That all being said, I don't know if this is a book I would recommend and if I did, I don't know to whom. However I am glad I read it.

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Sarah's Key

Sarah's KeySarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is one of those books where each chapter goes back and forth between present and past (at least for the first half of the book). The story is about present time Julia Jarmond who is an American journalist living in Paris and is assigned a story about the anniversary of an historical event in Paris called Vel’ d’Hiv. It’s a true event that happened in 1942 Paris when a German Gestapo ordered French police to round up Jewish families to send to Auschwitz. The story is told of what happens to this Jewish family and how in present time Julia Jarmond attempts to discover exactly how her non-Jewish family-in-law is involved. This is a fictional novel based on true events.

I highly recommend this book. It is very well written, it’s very moving, tears will be shed.

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