Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Hmm, well this being another book I had read during my 2009 summer reading, it was an extremely quick read. I liked the book, but that could be because I have an obsession with history and particularly, Tudor history. I have read all the books in the Young Royals series and have enjoyed the books. Although the books are not entirely based on fact.. The book speaks as if it is the thoughts of the character. So this book would be the life and thoughts of Anne Boleyn. Who is the second wife of King Henry VIII. The same wife who turned a kingdom into turmoil and ultimately met her demise at the Tower of London. Its a new view, enjoyable, but not for everyone.

Currently Reading: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

Monday, August 30, 2010

Running out of Options

I Had already gone through the list of books I had read this year... So I had to go through my list of books I read from the summer of 2009 and a little after that. Here is the 1st book from the list...

Ok, I have to do some recalling here. 13 Little Blue Envelopes is a book about 17 year old Virginia who receives 13 blue letters from her Crazy Aunt Peg; who has passed away. Th 1st letter explains that Ginny will be embarking on an adventure and that she is not aloud to open the next letter until she gets to her next destination or completes the task in the letter beforehand. On top of that she is given 4 rules she must follow.

Rule #1:
You may bring only what fits in your backpack. Don't try to fake it with a purse or a carry-on.

Rule #2:
You may not bring guidebooks, phrase books, or any kind of foreign language aid. And no journals.

Rule #3:
You cannot bring extra money or credit/debit cards, traveler's checks, etc. I'll take care of all that.

Rule #4:
No electronic crutches. This means no laptop, no cell phone, no music, and no camera. You can't call home or communicate with people in the U.S. by Internet or telephone. Postcards and letters are acceptable and encouraged.

The letter takes her on all these adventures through Europe, where Virginia discovers things about her Aunt and learns things about herself.

The book is a typical teenage chick lit light read. It's a feel good book. I enjoyed the book and in fact as I am sitting here planning my trip to Europe in April... I find myself recalling moments about the places we are going to visit from this book. The book is nothing SPECIAL and would not be the first book on the top of my head that I would recommend to someone, but it is a nice book, that makes you want to go travel.

Currently Reading: Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen

Friday, August 27, 2010

Remember When You Were...

Twenties Girl definitely surprised me. It was not what I thought it was about. I originally thought it was about a modern girl who likes to live like she was in the twenties (which overall sounded like a boring book, but I love the '20's era). However I was ALL wrong. The book is set in London, England. Lara is the main character; who just broke up with her boyfriend Josh, dropped everything to go into business with her best friend to become a headhunter (although shes never done it before), and overall is just in a tough spot. Mainly, because Natalie, Lara's friend and business partner decides to move to India, fall in love and isn't exactly sure when she will be coming back. Leaving Lara and their assistant Kate, to figure the business out. On top of that Lara is convinced her ex is still in love with her and she has to go to the funeral of her Great Aunt Sadie; who she's never met. Now, this is where the book begins...while at the funeral Lara discovers that she can see her great aunt Sadie, who has taken form of her 23 year old body from the '20's. Being Lara is the only one who can see her, Sadie asks..well more like demands Lara stop the funeral and help her find her necklace; because she cannot be put to rest without it.

That may sound a little boring, but the book hilariously follows them through there journey. It's part ghost story, meets mystery novel, meets love story. There are two, three, maybe even four different story lines going on... all tied together perfectly. I read through this book rather quickly and not because I just HAD to know how it ended but because it was hilarious and just made me happy. I would say it was like I was watching a movie or reading a perfectly well executed movie script and I just wanted to know what the ending would be. The book is excellently written and since the writer is also British, there are a few words that I didn't quite understand but got the point. This is the perfect summer reading book, or a book to read while lounging by the pool. I'm actually excited to read some more of Sophie Kinsella's books.

What's Next?

The Next book in my pile of books to read is "Water for Elephants" by Sarah Gruen. I honestly do not know much about the book. I know it is a historical piece (which I LOVE) and it has to do with the circus. I mainly picked the book up for 2 reasons... One being I have heard great things about it and 2nd being that I know the movie is in production and I want to read it before it comes out..

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Chelsea Lately

Chelsea Handler is a talented comedian who now has her own show called Chelsea Lately on the E! Network. Chelsea always brings the laugh and although sometime she can go to far, she is hilarious most of the time. Each of her books are encounters of life stories from Chelsea's point of view...although you do find yourself at times asking "wait did this REALLY happen?!"

Handler's first book does not disappoint. You can hear Chelsea's voice clearly through the stories. All the stories some up the title; it's about Chelsea's sex life in the earlier years of her life.

Are You There Vodka, It's Me Chelsea. Is My favorite book of the three. Chelsea brings the laughs through her crazy stories about her life. Try not to read the book in public, it tends to make people think you are crazy when you burst into laughter; out of nowhere.

The most recent of the books and probably the book fans can relate to more, in the sense that it has the most recent stories. Meaning they correspond to the Chelsea we know now. Some stories are from the past but most are in the present. Personally, I think the book fell short... compared to her second book, but was not horrible.

Overall, Chelsea Handler really makes you smile and laugh, overall Happy. The books are great light reads and make great gifts for anyone.

Currently Reading: Twenties Girl By Sophie Kinsella

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

If I Die Young...

The Lovely Bones was another one of those books, that I had heard about but didn't get to reading until they were making a movie out of it... and Trust me, there will be more cases like this one. I cannot say I loved this book, but I can't say I hated it either.. and it wasn't just okay. It was a breath of fresh air. Which May be a weird way to describe it.

The Lovely Bones is set in the early 70's when 14 year old Susie Salmon is raped and murdered on her way home from school, by her neighbor. The book follows Susie and her families life after she is murdered. We see how over the years the tragedy of losing a child and never knowing the answers, tears this family apart. We see a father go nearly insane over trying to find his daughters killer, a mother who has turned cold inside, a sister who has to live her life in Susie's shoes and always be known as "the sister to the girl who was murdered", and a younger brother who doesn't know what think cause well he was too young to fully understand. We see the friends of Susie cope and try to move on and a detective who cannot seem to let go of the case, despite the lack of evidence. And as all this is going on, 14 year old Susie is looking down on them all, over the years while she is in the "in- between".What I like the most about the book is, we also see her killers point of view. His mind set and his life stories that led him to be the person he has become.

I think I took this book to heart, mainly because it deals with the tragedy that happens around us in this world on a daily basis. This quote from the book says it best.
Because horror on Earth is real and it is everyday. It is like a flower or like the sun; it cannot be contained. -The Lovely Bones, Pg.186

Read the book. See The Movie. Take It To Heart. Cause I most definitely did... Although the movie isn't as good as the book (but rarely it ever is).

Currently Reading: Twenties Girl By Sophie Kinsella

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


I cannot believe I had neglected to read this book for over a year. Being pushed aside by all the other newer shinier books.. but oh, was this book a gem. I bought it at a nice used book store in Campbell,Ca and I am now more than overjoyed to say I have read it and you should too!

The book is set in England in the late 50's. Max Raphael has justed moved his family to his new job where he will be a deputy superintendent to the criminally insane. Max has a beautiful and intriguing wife Stella... who has grown bored with there marriage. So she begins a love affair with one of the hospitals patients Edgar Stark.

Need I say more?! Does that not make you want to read this book?! This is one of those books that I just could NOT put down and couldn't wait to find out how it ended. The book wastes no time getting to the point; you find the first 150 pages to be a crazy whirlwind and you don't know exactly whats going to happen.. for about 50 pages in the middle the book cools down and kind of makes you think " really that is all?".. but don't stop! I promise those last 100 pages or so will make your head spin. It's hard to place this book in a category it's not exactly a horror story and it's not really a psychological thriller. It's more a forensic psychology love story. There are very few books that I want to see turned into a movie and this one of them. Although it is in ways similar to Shutter Island.... it is also SO much different. I do warn though that the book is not for the faint of heart... for there are plenty of sexual encounters and graphic descriptions of crime. The book is excellently written and is told from the view of a fellow friend a psychiatrist to both Stella and Max.Which gives the book that extra umph of originality. Being that my major is forensic psychology.. the book may have intrigued me more than others... but I promise any avid reader would enjoy this book. It really is in it's own element.

What's Next?

My next book is "Twenties Girl" by Sophie Kinsella, honestly I only bought the book cause the title intrigued me. I love the 1920's and from what I got from the summer this is a modern take on a girl who lives her life like she lives in the '20's but I could be wrong. My feelings are mixed on how excited I am about reading this book. It may be because I went from reading a truly enthralling book to another "easy read" chick-lit book. So hopefully it does not disappoint.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

My Sisters Keeper...No Clever Title This Time

I heard about My Sisters Keeper in high school when one of my friends had choosen to do the book for a book report. When she described the storyline to me, I instantly knew this was a book I'd like to read.. yet, it fell out of my mind shortly after. Than a year or so later; there was buzz about the book being made into a movie. So, being me I had to read the book before the movie came out (by the way I hate when I watch a movie and than later find out it was based on a book, because I like to read the book first) and boy, I am happy I read the book first!

The concept of the book is about a family who has one son and one daughter, and are living happily until there daughter is diagnosed with Leukemia. In order to save there daughters life they conceive another child to use here umbilical cord blood. This works for a while, until Kate relapses and Anna is needed again. This becomes an ongoing process. Now Anna is thirteen and her sister Kate's condition is getting worse, Anna is expected to give help her sister out, this time involving a major surgery. This is when Anna makes a daring choice. Anna hires a lawyer to have the rights to her own body, so she is basically suing her parents.

Her whole life Anna has not been able to be a normal child, because she has been expected to be there for Kate. She feels like the odd man out because she was purely conceived to save Kate, not because her parents wanted another child. Since Kate got diagnosed the family focused on Kate and Kate's needs. So, it wasn't only Anna who felt left out, their eldest son Jesse, felt invisible as well. Leading to a life of drugs,alcohol and crime.

This decision pulls the family apart. Jesse understands why his sister is doing what she is doing and surprisingly so does her sister Kate. Who doesn't understand is their mother,Sara. Sara grows to resent Anna and eventually fights her in court justifying why she has done what she has done. The kids dad and Sara's husband Brian's relationship, also becomes strained when he questions what he and Sara did. Wanting to give Anna the love and support she needs without, throwing his love for his wife and Kate away either.

The whole story is told in chapters, but each chapter is a different characters perspective, memories and feelings. The book is truly original, engaging and heart wrenching. It made you think! What would you do? Was it right for them to do what they had done? Was Anna being selfish or was she justified? Personally, I understand why the parents did what they did by conceiving Anna, however.. I do not think they were right to use her as their personal medical miracle. To expect that out of her was wrong on so many levels, and I truly grew to hate the mother the most, cause although she thought she was doing what was best for her daughter, she was being selfish and tore that family apart. As for Anna, that wasn't an easy decision for her to have made, but I feel she was justified in her choice. I loved the book and would absolutely suggest to everyone to go and read it. The ending is what will get you the most and what will bring the story full circle in my opinion.

As for the movie... I was utterly disappointed. That movie did not deserve the title of "My Sisters Keeper" for it was loosely based on the book. Had I not have read the book before hand and had to book not have been a widely known and loved book, the movie probably would have been alright. I wasn't happy with some of the changes, but I shrugged it off.. until the end. The ending of the book is the most pivotal, part of the whole story. It is what i think made the book so well received and the writer,director whoever...changed the ending in the movie! This wasn't even a slight change this was a completely different ending. This enraged me, still enrages me that, they would take a beloved book, make a movie out of it and really only use the books title. Very Disappointing. Go read the book, but skip the movie.

Currently Reading: Asylum by Patrick McGrath

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Oh Dear...

I feel this book as well as it movie really failed to please me.. the expectations exceeded what they delivered. Now for the book.... I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it; I didn't dislike it, but I didn't like it either. It was OK. I was really excited to read "Dear John" because I thought I could relate to it being as my Fiancé was a Marine and we spent the 1st 7 months of our relationship, mailing letters to each other. Like in the book.. However, I found myself not really connecting to the book; the book has twists that I think usually make a book great and different. Just for me it didn't work, I was expecting one thing and didn't get it. Especially because the author is Nicholas Sparks, author of famous love stories and movies "A Walk to Remember" and "The Notebook". Although in ways these books and this book has similarities the love connection wasn't enough.

The Book has a pretty simple plot. A Soldier named John is on leave and visiting his father back in their small southern town. While on leave John meets Savannah and after a few short days they fall in love and decide to keep their relationship going through letters to each other. Trouble ensues when Johns contract is over and he is suppose to come back to the states and live his life with Savannah, than Sept. 11th happens and John re-enlists. Another year of a relationship through letters, becomes straining. Will they survive it?

I have met plenty of people who loved the book and loved the movie, but for me it just didn't hit the mark and would not be a book I would immediately think of when recommending books to others. I am curious though...to the people who have read the book...did you enjoy it, or do you feel the same as me?

Currently Reading: Asylum by Patrick McGrath

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Mhmm... Candy!

The past months I have been reading a lot of "chick-lit" or also "Easy Reads" as I call them... which means a book that is enjoyable but isn't anything new. To be honest I wasn't really interested on reading Lauren Conrad's series that was basically a mirror of her life. She "wrote" what she knew... and I say wrote cause I'm almost sure she used a ghost writer for the book. If you have ever watched MTV's Laguna Beach or The Hills. Than you will know Lauren Conrad is, if not.. basically she is/was the Star of those two reality shows following her life. L.A. Candy is basically based on The Hills. Four girls living in the life in the city.

I was surprised to find that I enjoyed the book. I think I enjoyed the book for the fact that the whole time I was trying to decide who the characters were based off of in real life.. Like Jane is obviously Lauren. Could Scarlett be Audrina?! They seem to have that edgy vibe, but in the book they say the girls went to High School together... So Heidi or Lo.. but that doesn't fit either. Maybe Madison is Heidi... all fake and bitchy.. and Gaby is Stephanie? WHO KNOWS.. Well Lauren does... It made the book more intriguing especially when you got a more behind the scenes feel to the reality TV life-style. Jane is a like-able character who you really root for and Scarlett is easily as like-able but adds a little more spice to things. The book is a little "slow" in the sense that this really is just an introductory, to the real drama I'm sure is to come with that little cliff hanger of an ending.

Over all I liked the book. It was entertaining enough, decently written, but not New York Bestsellers material in my opinion (and Yes, I am aware it was). Although I purchased it (it's a weird thing I have) I'd recommend getting it from the library. Needless to say after I go through my long list of must reads... I will definitely read the second and third books of the series.. "Sweet Little Lies" and "Sugar and Spice"

Currently Reading: Asylum by Patrick McGrath

Eat, Pray, Love

I have finally finished this book! My goal was to finish the book before the movie came out but I missed this goal by 5 days... Oh, Where to begin?! By now I'm sure most people (mainly women) have already read this book or if not have gone and seen the movie or both. Either way here is my opinion (because it matters OH SO much) I truly enjoyed the book. Mainly, because even though there was a 15 year age difference. I feel like I have been there... I could relate to her (even if there were a few rude remarks against Republicans). I have been that depressed, I have felt that yearning, to want to be free and to want to explore, and to feel loved, not only by yourself but by someone other than your family. I get it! I could relate to her take on religion and especially God. I found myself almost feeling cleansed, as I read about her experiences. It's almost like my bible to happiness.

For those of you who don't know the book is about a woman Elizabeth Gilbert aka the author. Who after going through a divorce decides to pack up her whole life and live in three different countries. Italy, India and Indonesia. In each of these country she learns to experience new things and to really live her life by Eating, Praying and Loving.. which really brings the title full circle. The concept of how she wrote the book is clever as well and I like how you almost forget that the person in the book is a real person (again, it's the author).. I like that it gives me and other woman hope that they can REALLY have this fairytale.

I would definitely recommend this book to other people.. and I think it also makes a great gift. I am looking forward to seeing the movie and hoping that it doesn't disappoint. Also, I think I'm going to have to go on Amazon and Wish List her other book (which is basically a sequel) "Committed". I have seen the book before but have just passed it by and although I loved this book.. I wasn't really thinking about going out and getting "Committed" but now that I know it continues the authors story of her life after her trips to The Three "I's".. I cannot wait to scoop it up.

What's Next?
The book I plan to read next is a book I bought over a year ago at a thrift store and have been meaning to read it but kept putting it to the bottom of my reading list (which is LONG). So, I finally said "Screw it, it's now or never". It seems to be a short read (but who knows) The book is called "Asylum" by Patrick McGrath.