Categotry Archives: Book Reviews


Bookmarks made of Awesome

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I tell no lies here (that’s a lie) but these bookmarks really are awesome. So in my stocking this Christmas my cousin Katherine sort of outdid herself. I totally was not up to snuff this year apparently and will have to up my game next year. Not only did she get me a ton of postcards (some of you might have received one already), she also snuck in two books of stamps with them. And one of them was international stamps! Those things are expensive. I sent off 5 PostCrossing cards already. And on top of that she got me these bookmarks that you can write notes to yourself on and then check a box for whether the book was “Pleasurable” or “Shameful”. You might think I will only be checking the latter but I actually have a high tolerance of shame. Not that high. Ok. Whatever.

Now, there are only 25 of these awesome bookmarks so I’m going to have to ration myself. I have decided that what I should do is allow myself two bookmarks every month for the entire year of 2012. Plus one extra for that month where I just really need it. It was still a dilemma deciding what book to devote the mark to. I’m thinking definitely the first book I read every month, no matter what it is. And then one to be picked at my discretion during the month. We’ll see how this goes. For the month of January I blew both bookmarks in like the first three days. And now I’ve been chomping at the bit for weeks to use another one. I am not a patient person, right? This is very hard.

I know this is kind of ridiculous but I am planning on sharing these with you every month too. Just what you wanted, huh? A second blog about books every month. Maybe I’ll combine the two. But I am really thrilled by this whole bookmark thing and might feel compelled to make you experience it with me. But also I might get lazy and just hold off on doing one until the end of the year when I can spread out all 25 of my fancy new notated bookmarks.

I read Blood Red Road, a dystopic YA fiction, first this month. It wasn’t great. It’s an exciting title to have on a bookmark though. Especially since in contrast my notes are about kissing and being pissed when I find out it’s a series. What I will always remember about Blood Red Road: “KISSING! Bastards.” Which is hilarious considering the plot of most of the book. It’s dystopic old West-esque. Sort of. Not a delightful YA romance. Which, I guess, you could figure since it took till page 383 for the kissing to even happen.

The Duke is Mine was a romance I read second this month. I’ve read a lot of Eloisa James. This is part of her new re-told fairy tales series and is based on the Princess and the Pea. It was pretty funny. Most of my comments are in fact parts I was laughing at–the lettuce diet she went on sounded about as exciting as my miso soup diet. I do not know why I feel the need to note every time anyone puts a bird on anything (p. 25 and 177), but I do. This is just a fact of life now. I do not remember what the “wobble” on page 254 was about. I could go find out but the book is further away than I’m willing to walk right now. And it was kind of an irritating continuity error when the main male character told the woman he loved her on page 259 but then on page 316 it was all internal monologue angst about whether or not he loved her and should tell her. I was like, WTF? You’re past this. You said it already. It was odd. I actually went back and found the page he said it on so I could note it before noting my irritation with page 316.


2011: Books in Review

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To see my stats for 2010, click here.

So over the course of 365 days, how many books did I read, buy, borrow from the library? How much did I spend? How much of my life has been wasted on literary pursuits?

My goal this year was to read slightly more than 2010 (where I read 239 books). I was aiming for 250. Success! But I also spent more (and on less books). But I also made more! Time for stats (how I love them.)


Books Read: 274

Books Partially Read: 73

Books Bought: 61

Money Spent: $262

Money Made: $348

Books Borrowed: 185

Books Given: 111

Books Re-read: 74 (27% of total books read)

Average books on To-Be-Read shelf during the year: 48.6 (I really need to winnow this down. New Year’s resolution? And by winnow down I mean: Stop Bringing More Books Into The House!)

Other statistics:

Total Books In: 357

Total Books Read/Started: 347

Of all the books I read or started to read compared to the books that came into my house this year that only leaves 10 I never even started. Did I start out with a huge backlog in January? I must have since I still have 71 books on the To-Be-Read shelf right now. Hm, no, it says only 26 on that blog. There is some funky math happening here. Oh! No, it’s the re-reads I think. That would account for it. (Still some funky math but I’m ignoring it).

Spent approximately $4.30 a book. Not great. I did better at this last year ($2.33/book).

I borrowed a lot less from the library this year (230 vs. 185). I also was given more books this year (111 vs. 58). Damn ARCs.

Last year I calculated that I spent about 10% of the year reading. This year (based on the same math) it’s 12%. Not a huge difference but still pretty sizable over a whole year.

Favorite Books of 2011:


Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente

Henrietta’s War and Henrietta Sees It Through by Joyce Dennys

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern


As You Desire by Connie Brockway

Just Like Heaven by Julia Quinn

Call Me Irresistible by Susan Elizabeth Phillips


Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan

Kingdom of Gods by N.K. Jemisin

Harmony by Project Itoh


Life Among the Savages by Shirley Jackson

Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

Web 2.0 Tools and Strategies for Archives by Kate Theimer


Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

YA Fantasy

Chime by Franny Billingsley

Wither by Lauren DeStafano

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

Queen of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner

Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves

Eona by Alison Goodman


Jenny and the Cat Club by Esther Averill

George and Martha: The Complete Stories of Two Best Friends by James Marshall

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of her Own Making by Catherynne M.Valente


December 2011

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I continue to be sick and I continue my reading ways. I was telling my mother that I made my goal of reading 250 books in 2011 and asking what my goal should be for 2012. 300? 275? She said, “Get a job and read less books.” Aw, moms.

Books Read: 19

Books Partially Read: 0 (this seems odd. Maybe I forgot some?)

Books Bought: 9

Money Spent: $40

Books Borrowed: 12

Books Given: 9

Books Re-read: 5

Money made (from selling books): $134. (at Powell’s and also many copies of my book, Book ‘Em.)

Books on To-Be-Read Shelf: 71

Favorite Books this month: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Diva Without a Cause by Grace Dent, As You Desire by Connie Brockway, and The Kingdom of Gods by N.K. Jemisin.

The Night Circus was the first book I read last month and it was fabulous. It’s a fiction book about a magician competition set in a circus (which provides the means by which the magicians demonstrate their powers). The competitors are these two old guys but they don’t fight, they assign proxies who are then trained and enslaved to the battle. It was gorgeous and fabulous and I loved it. Also it was begun once upon a time during a NaNo so there’s that camaraderie going for it too.


“It is important,” the man in the grey suit interrupts. “Someone needs to tell those tales. When the battles are fought and won and lost, when the pirates find their treasures and the dragons eat their foes for breakfast with a nice cup of Lapsang souchong, someone needs to tell their bits of overlapping narrative. There’s magic in that. It’s in the listener, and for each and every ear it will be different, and it will affect them in ways they can never predict. From the mundane to the profound. You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows what they might do because of it, because of your words. That is your role, your gift. Your sister may be able to see the future, but you yourself can shape it, boy. Do not forget that.” He takes another sip of his wine. “There are many kinds of magic, after all.”

–From The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Diva Without a Cause was ridiculous. I cannot stress this enough. The cover. The writing. It’s super SUPER slangy Brit YA. And not normal Brit slang, Chav slang. It’s quite different. I thought I knew a lot of Brit slang but no, I discovered, I really don’t. Even with all the ridiculousness happening, I still kind of loved it. It’s very funny and sweet. And funny. Also funny was watching my cousin James snort-giggle at the dictionary in the back over Christmas.


Cousin James and my book. And a rooster quilt.

As You Desire by Connie Brockway is obviously a romance novel as you probably already guessed. But what a romance! It’s set in Egypt and I LOVE Egypt. It’s got great characters and back stories and research and history (there’s a lot of archaelogy). The writing is of a much higher caliber than some romance novels–ie there are 6 syllable words in this book. I’ve read a lot of Connie Brockway at this point over the last year and this is one of the best (which also includes Bridal Favors and Bridal Season which I also re-read this month). She wrote a sequel to As You Desire which I have ordered but not gotten yet. Super excited as it is also set in Egypt.


“…Face lifted for the sun god’s caress…Why, look,…even Ra himself cannot resist you. Only see how he lathes your cheeks and brow with his heated tongue…marking you with his golden kiss?…How can a mere mortal man stand a chance if even the gods are so enamored?…And how can one single image describe you? You are a country, a country of unexplored sensation and whim, veiled in dawn, shining, shedding light. See how the long fluid line of your throat flows to your breasts?…Or how their blue-shadowed curves open above the smooth plain of your belly?…Your mouth…Your mouth is a sweet well sealed against me, keeping me thirsting for the clarity of your kiss. Your flesh is like the desert sand, warmth and shifting strength beneath its golden color. Your palms open, fingers flexed, are minarets, delicate and elegant. And your body…it is the Nile itself–by the narrows of your waist and jettied hips to the lush delta below…You are my country, Desdemona…My Egypt, my hot, harrowing desert and my cool verdant Nile, infinitely lovely and sustaining.”

–From As You Desire by Connie Brockway.

Hoo! It makes me want to fan myself and watch The Mummy.

Kingdom of Gods was the third in the trilogy of Jemisin’s and it did not disappoint. It’s way better than the second one though still not as good as the first one. This is high quality fantasy novel with a well-developed world, religion, and political structure (though politics were actually slightly less important in this one than religion and familial relationships–though that family was very political). There’s a lot of new characters in this one and a lot of the ones from book 1 back again. The end was fabulous. It gave me a lot of things I don’t normally get out of a book–polyamorous relationships for starters. Which is something I’ve been considering writing about lately because seriously, where are those books? Maybe I just don’t know the right places to look.

Honorable Mentions: Pirates Ninjas Zombies. Yup. I read my draft and copy-edited some and then was disappointed in it and now am going to make Kris read it and give me feedback. Sigh. It’s still good and I enjoy it and love it. But it NEEDS something and I don’t know how to put that need into words. Or action to fix it.

Least Favorite Books this month: Meh, nothing so bad it’s worth mentioning as it turns out.


November 2011

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Last month I said I needed to read 9 books this month in order to stay on track for my annual reading goal. I so far surpassed that I have already reached the goal. December will simply be gravy. Possibly some actual gravy. Mmmm, gravy. Don’t judge me, I’ve been eating broth for a month.

Books Read: 22

Books Partially Read: 4

Books Bought: 8

Money Spent: $35.00 (8 copies of Book ‘Em for giveaways and editing)

Books Borrowed: 23

Books Given: 3

Books Re-read: 0

Money made (from selling books): $57. And you know what books I sold? MINE! 23 copies of my self-published novel, Book ‘Em.

Books on To-Be-Read Shelf: I’m not willing to count that box. We’ll call it 70.

The problem with this month is that I read a surprising amount of great books. I’ll keep it short. Or as short as possible. For me. You know what that means.

Favorite Books This Month: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins, The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson, The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, The Medusa Plot by Gordon Korman, Dying to Meet You by Kate Klise, also by Kate Klise: Over My Dead Body, Regarding the Trees and Deliver Us From Normal; The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan, and Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins.

Lola and Anna by Stephanie Perkins are both contemp YA novels. I read them out of order which didn’t REALLY matter, still I would rec reading Anna first. They were both fabulous–great dialogue and fast, smooth plots. Excellent secondary characters and super romantic adorableness. There’s a third book in the series (they are stand alones but loosely related) coming out and I am excited to read it too. Anna is set in Paris and Lola in San Francisco.

All the Kate Klise ones I read because my mom brought home Dying to Meet You from school where it is currently all the rave among the 4th graders. It’s told entirely in letters and newspaper articles and is about a haunted house, an 11 year old boy, and a grumpy old man. They’re cute and funny. I proceeded to read a ton of her books. I’d already read Regarding the Fountain (the first in that series) but I discovered there were more of them and read all of those–they’re about a class of kids and their friendship with a super eccentric inventor. And then I read Deliver Us From Normal which is an actual novel (not epistolary) and was great. I didn’t like the sequel as much (Far From Normal) but it was also interesting. They’re about a lower-middle class family with 5 kids and their problems with the town they live in (Normal, IL) and how they run away and buy a houseboat. On the whole I heartily recommend all of Kate Klise’s writing–great stuff especially for kids who don’t like to “read” since the letter format also incorporates a lot of pictures and they’re very easy to get into.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns is about a princess with a God-stone in her belly and is (obviously) a fantasy novel with quests and battles and romance. It was good. The princess starts off super chubby and becomes more and more likable as she discovers her purpose. Pretty sure it’s the first in a series. I will totally read the next one.

The Name of the Star is about a girl who is going to school in Paris, can see ghosts, and has a run in with a Jack the Ripper copycat. It was the first YA boarding school book set in Paris I read this month (Anna being the other one). I liked Anna better in terms of description and use of the city, but Star was also really good in terms of plot and interest factor.

This is not short at all. I’m sorry.

The Medusa Plot is the first book in the second series in the Cahill books started by Gordan Korman. It’s now the Cahills vs. Vespers series instead of The 39 Clues. I am still completely enthralled by this story and irritated by how long I will have to wait between books AGAIN. This actually is a common theme in November. I read WAY too many books which were the first in a series. Generally without knowing it was going to be a series until the end and then being pissed. I really want some stand alone novels in December now.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is about a girl who survives a horrific accident, may or may not have PTSD and/or amnesia and/or powers. The title and cover art = superb. The story was excellent (though this is the third book I’ve read in as many months about a girl who wakes up in a hospital with no idea how she got there. This one was better than the others though. I don’t even remember their names.) Also a series, dammit.

Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan. Ugh. Tiernan wrote the horrid cursed Sweep series which I have read and own and is like 14 or 15 books long. They’re so terrible and yet SO ADDICTIVE. This one was just as bad and yet also just as compelling. And it’s also the first in a new series. It better not be 14 books long. I’m relatively sure it’s only a trilogy. Anyway it’s about people who are immortal and how they elect to spend their lives. The main character starts off as a party girl in Europe and then moves to a farm commune in America in order to be a better person. There’s a lot about sustainable agriculture which shouldn’t be so interesting BUT IT IS. My description is making this book sound terribly uninteresting, I get that. There’s also a lot of other characters and we learn details about their lives and since many of them are immortal they’ve had really long and fascinating lives. Also they have magic powers. And there’s a pretty hot love-story happening. Damn Cate Tiernan.

Honorable Mentions: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake and Goliath by Scott Westerfield.

This Anna–gorgeous title and cover. About a psychotic ghost dripping blood everywhere off her white party dress and super creepy black veins a la Willow is worth mentioning. The main male character I was bored with kind of quickly but I really liked the Anna parts. Also a stupid first in a series presumably based on that ending.

Goliath delightfully was the third and final in a series. Finally, an ending! Although it was kind of an open-ended nonsense of “And then they all went off to do this….” And you’re like, “Yeah? What was that like?!” and you turn the page and DON’T KNOW. Still this series was pretty great. Alterna steam-punk/Darwinist creation nonsense World War II historical revisionism. Fascinating. Also pretty art is included.

Least Favorites: Bloodlines by Richelle Mead, Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin, If You Give A Girl A Viscount by Kieran Kramer and Snuff by Terry Pratchett.

I’ve given up on Richelle Mead. She started off so great with the Vamp Academy series and the Succubus series. But then they went downhill so fast. And this new series which is a spin-off of VA? I can’t do it. I just can’t.

Everyone has been raving about Game of Thrones but I just couldn’t deal with it. I’m sure they’re great but no character being sacred unnerves me and I was sick enough still this month that I wanted nice pleasant things to be happening, not 7 year olds being thrown out of high towers or sweet girls getting raped.

Kieran Kramer’s 4th in the Impossible Bachelor series actually wasn’t that bad but then the epilogue was so disjointed from the rest of the novel that I was thrown for a loop and vaguely nauseated by the abrupt transition. What happened? I don’t even care. I like When Harry Met Molly still and Cloudy with a Chance of Marriage all right but this one was a dud. I wonder what she will write next now that she’s done with the Impossible Bachelors. And yes, that is an indicator that I will continue to read her books so I must not dislike them that much.

Snuff….after the early Watch books, I started to dislike the Vimes centered ones. He’s SOOOOO repetitive and this entry into the cannon was a huge offender. I can only read so much about how he’s a cop before I want to scream, “Yes, you like the law, all right! Shut the fuck up already!” It’s really long and only marginally good in small doses.

I’ll try to like fewer books in December. I’m already loving The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern though, just a warning.


October 2011

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October! It’s generally a good month. One of my favorites–beginning of Fall and all. Although it was kind of warmer weather than I like and it’s really now in November that we’re entering the weather *I* like.

Also October sucked because I spent the whole thing on the couch watching Stargate SG-1 and in pain. The Stargate part was totally fine. The pain thing got old over a month ago.

Fuck it. Whatever. Let’s talk about books. I read some in October. I also did some preliminary math and I’m pretty sure (keep in mind my math skills are poor) that I (only) need to read 18 more books in November and December (total–not each month) in order to reach my professed goal of 250 books for the year of 2011. Thus beating my total of 239 from last year. I didn’t really aim excessively over 2010’s victory upon the written word.

Books Read: 20

Books Partially Read: 6

Books Bought: 2

Money Spent: $8.50

Books Borrowed: 12

Books Given: 2

Books Re-read: 6

Money made (from selling books): $12 whole dollars! Of which I immediately spent $8.50 on more books! Damn my inveterate spending!

Books on To-Be-Read Shelf: 69. Seriously. I need to read more.

Favorite Books This Month: Pie by Sarah Weeks, Fly Trap by Frances Hardinge, and Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson.

Look how few that is! And I only added the last one on impulse. And ok maybe also I re-read my book–Book ‘Em–last month again too as I was editing for publication. It’s still pretty good. I mean, I laughed multiple times at funny bits. But I didn’t include that in favorites because I’ve done that before. No need to toot my own horn! Actually there’s every need. I suck at self-promotion. Creating a marketing strategy for e-publishing is hard, people.

You might think Pie is a cookbook, but it’s not. It’s…ok, wait, actually it does have recipes in it at the beginning of each chapter so I guess it’s kind of like a cookbook. But really it’s a kid’s chapter book. Or whatever you designate a chapter book for slightly older kids as. It’s a kid’s book. It’s about this girl who inherits a cat from her pie-making aunt and the mystery surrounding the famous pie crust recipe her aunt invented. And there’s a boy and it’s sort of old-fashioned and pretty much it’s adorable. I loved it. My mom got it for me from her Scholastic Book Club thing so I was supposed to give it to her class after I read it but I’m keeping it. I already made one of the pies. Lemon Chess Pie. It’s got corn meal in it and it kind of makes a crunchy crust. I want to try to Coconut Cream Pie next. I have all the ingredients for it already. Looking for an occasion.

Super Natural Every Day IS a cookbook. A crazy delicious hippie one. I’ve only made one thing from it so far–this blackberry, coconut, pistachio tart thing. It is amazing. But I am excited to make many many more things from it. And eat them all.

Fly Trap is the sequel to Fly by Night which I read a couple years back. Finally got around to reading the sequel (it’s only been out a couple months so it’s not like I was procrastinating that bad). It’s about a girl named Mosca Mye and her goose and her friends and the evil Locksmiths. I liked it. I was worried because Kris said she re-read Fly by Night and it wasn’t as good anymore. This wasn’t as good as my memory tells me Fly by Night was, but still pretty delightful. I like Mosca.

Least Favorite Books This Month: The Bride Wore Scarlet by Liz Carlyle, Waking Up With The Duke by Lorraine Heath, Vanish by Sophie Jordan, As I Wake by Elizabeth Scott, and Misfit by Jon Skovan.

The first 2 were bad romances. The Bride one…they had special powers but not really interesting ones. The Duke one, guh. The woman’s husband was impotent and asked the Duke to impregnate his wife. Soooo basically it was about adultery and I gave up pretty quickly. The last 3 were bad YA novels. Vanish was a sequel to this dragon one I read a while back…you know it’s not even worth telling you why they were bad. They were just not interesting. Not any of these. Didn’t finish them.

So this month I will read at least 9 books on my path to 250 total. Here I go. Just pick one of the 69 on the shelf and start.

Do you know how hard it is to pick just one from 69?! So hard. Especially when these include a new Terry Pratchett, a new Richelle Mead, a book about shipwrecks and so many more. So many. 69. Maybe I’ll just read one of my own novels again. (Shameless self-promotion.)


September 2011

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If you saw the previous post, you already know how many books I read last month–46. I had a lot of time to read. But since I was sick, I was mostly only willing to read thing I’d read before. Which Is why I read the Roswell series by Melinda Metz and a HUGE chunk of Meg Cabot’s books. When I’m sick I like things that are comfortable. Which apparently mostly means paranormal romantic YA. I also had to vary up reading locations. So I’d spend some days reading in my bed, some on my couch in my TV room, and some in the guest bed (which has this down-filled pillow top thing and is super comfortable if lying on your back and super painful–at least for me and my intestinal inflammation–if lying on your side. Fish Styx has been pretty thrilled by this month. He got to sleep on me in many different locations and the guest room was a new and apparently uber exciting one for him. It might have to do with how his scratching post was banished to that room so he wouldn’t eat bits of it and throw up. But I think he also just really loves the pillow top. Moggy would come in sometimes and glare at us. She also likes the pillow top but does not like sleeping with Fish and I.

Books Read: 46

Books Partially Read: 9

Books Bought: 2

Money Spent: $2

Books Borrowed: 14

Books Given: 51

Books Re-read: 29

Money made (from selling books): 0

Books on To-Be-Read Shelf: 73 (SHIT. FUCK. MONKEYS!)

So actually I spent $22 on books this month at the SFPL Big Book Sale but my mom gave me $20 so I counted those books as ones she gave me and the $2 I spent as 2 of the ones I got that day. The reason I got so many books this month is due to that $20 AND the fact that Kim was in town and her mom had box upon box of ARCs (advance reader copies) and I got a bunch of stuff from her (2 boxes). Plus my mom gave me 2 other ones from the Scholastic Book Order Club thing from her school–one of which is all about preserving things! I really need to try to break in to the farmer market scene with canned goods and cheesecakes one of these days. Katy, if you read this, let me know if you can sell jam. We could pretend it’s jam from your farm.

Much as I love all these new books I’ve gotten (and I do love them a lot). I am HORRIFIED by how much is on the To-Read shelf now. Most of them aren’t even on the shelf. There’s this huge box on the floor. Guh.

Whatever. Onwards!

Favorite Books this Month: Succubus Revealed by Richelle Mead, Finnikin of the Rock by Melissa Marchetta, Henrietta Sees It Through by Joyce Dennys, Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore, and Ramona and Her Father by Beverly Cleary. I also loved re-reading the Meg Cabot series: Missing and Mediator.

The final in the Succubus series had the conclusion I saw coming BOOKS ago. Still, enjoyed it for wrapping things up. The succubus is named Georgina and is set on her life working for Hell in Seattle. Also at a book store (not in this one. In this one she’s working as an elf at the mall with a drunk Santa). And her author boyfriend and various hellish co-workers. It’s adult paranormal romance.

Finnikin of the Rock was good, solid YA fantasy. A little darker than some YA (there was a lot of child abuse mentioned or alluded to throughout the book). The plot was easy to foresee though it did a good job trying to provide twists. Mostly I just liked the writing and characters. Also that it was a stand-alone novel with an interesting presentation of nationality/home-land/exodus/wandering schisms.

The Henrietta was the sequel to the other Henrietta. I borrowed it from Kris. I think I liked it even more than the first one. Maybe. I don’t know. The first one was awfully good too. I discovered that she wrote an autobiography which Amazon has and now I want that too. Anyway, it’s a series of letters written during WWII to her friend fighting at the front about the village where she lives in England.

Texas Gothic which alone was a fabulous title and the cover was pretty too, is about girls with magic power and ghosts and cowboy romance. I kind of loved it. YA paranormal but at least well-written and little bit atypical.

I read 5 Ramona books this month (all bought at the SFPL book sale) and I think Ramona and Her Father was my favorite. Maybe Ramona and Beezus. Whatever, I liked all of them. I’m sure I’ve read them all before when I was a kid but I didn’t remember them at all so it was fun to read. I am missing 2 of them still which I want to get. and then maybe the Henry ones too. And I kind of want to watch the Ramona and Beezus movie with Selena Gomez again.

Least Favorite Books this Month: The Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz, So Shelley by Ty Roth, Legacy by Cayla Kluver, Hourglass by Myra McEntire, and Love, Inc. by Yvonne Collins.

These were all various YA books I got from the library and disliked and didn’t finish. Though some of them (Hourglass) have been getting rave reviews. And Legacy was the first book Amazon bought for publication. And So Shelley was about the Romantics and I love them. But still didn’t like any of these. Could have been just not in the right mood (Heh. Ie, not healthy and wanting comfort re-reads.)

Book Quote of the Month:

“We like women and we like religion, especially if they do not become too demanding. They are both ‘nicer’ when pliable, and perhaps just a little vague.”

–From Women in the World of Religion by Elsie Thomas Culver (she’s the one I’m working on the online exhibit about for the Graduate Theological Union internship I’m doing. And which I haven’t been to in weeks because sitting up is TOO hard.)


July 2011

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The thing is that I did read a lot this month. But half of them were books for the Certified Archivist test I took last week. So it’s not like most of it was FUN reading. Especially the one on Automated Access from 1981. Ridiculous.

Books Read: 37

Books Partially Read: 6 (one of them was Automated Access. Who would read all of that? Punch cards! Groan.)

Books Bought: 5

Money Spent: $25

Books Borrowed: 18

Books Given: 1

Books Re-read: 5

Money made (from selling books): 0

Books on To-Be-Read Shelf: I don’t want to say. Sigh. 48.

Favorite Books: Naamah’s Blessing by Jacqueline Carey, Queen of the Dead by Stacey Kade, The Cat Club by Esther Averill, and Henrietta’s War by Joyce Dennys.

The Naamah was the final one in that trilogy so it’s possible my liking it was partially due to its being over. But I also liked it! I am suspicious who Carey will write a series about next though. Please don’t let it be the little girl. Please. The first Kushiel trilogy remains her best. None of her other characters can beat Phedre for wonderfulness. But I did really love the first Naamah one (proof) and I did enjoy the conclusion to it.

Queen of the Dead is the sequel to The Ghost and the Goth which I also liked. It’s about a teenage girl who gets run over by a bus, comes back, makes friends with the boy who can see ghosts, sort of become an item. Blah blah, YA romance, yo. In this one though there’s some more stuff happening with ghost-seeing group, more powers, and the delightful epithet, “Casper-lover”.

The Cat Club is something I read as a kid and still completely and absolutely love. It’s about a little black cat named Jenny whose owner is a crusty sea captain who knits her a red scarf and her adventures with the neighborhood cat club. So adorable.

Henrietta’s War was written in the 40s and is an epistolary novel from a middle-aged-ish woman to her childhood friend at the war-front. It’s all from her letters and is about the happenings in a small town in Britain with a bunch of other middle-aged to old people and their home-front war efforts. You wouldn’t think it would be as fabulous as it is for a novel from someone you’ve never heard of but it’s great. Also there’s a sequel which I just borrowed from Kris and will get to eventually after this piles of library books goes down a little.

Least Favorite Books: I mean, let’s be honest here. Automated Access, OBVIOUSLY. I was also not raving about the new Kody Keplinger–Shut Out–(which I was maybe TOO excited about anyway after D.U.F.F.) and the newest Mary Janice Davidson about the vampire queen, Betsy (Undead and Undermined). Because seriously WTF is happening with those? It’s like she’s on acid.

Other things I liked all right: Arabel’s Raven by Joan Aiken, Bumped by Megan McCafferty, Phedre by Jean Racine, Candida by George Bernard Shaw, Red Moon Rising by Peter Moore, Here There Be Monsters by Meljean Brook, Wildefire by Karsten Knight, and Web 2.0 Tools and Strategies for Archives by Kate Theimer.

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