Monday, November 16, 2009

Beneath the Surface

Beneath the Surface by Michael Phelps

Summary: The autobiography of swimmer Michael Phelps and his attempt to win 8 gold medals in the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Comments: I enjoyed this because I respect Michael Phelps and all he has accomplished. But there wasn't much to it. A nice travelogue, nothing life changing. And I want to know about Bejing.

The Lovely Bones

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

Summary: Narrated by Susie Salmon, a 14 year old girl who is raped and brutally murdered, the story of her family and their attempts to move on without her.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Comments: Certainly not for everyone. Emotionally hard from the beginning. But I couldn't stop reading. I was so intrigued and I wanted Harvey to get what was coming to him. In that, I was more than a little disappointed. The ending didn't do it for me. I gave it four stars for readability and such an interesting premise, as well as the fact that this story will stay with me. But I must admit, I was a bit let down at the end.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Shaffer

Summary: Juliet, a popular newspaper writer, finds the story she has been looking for as she inadvertently connects with a literary society on the island of Guernsey.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Comments: I just didn't love this book, and I had such high hopes going into reading it. I just didn't connect with it.

When You Reach Me

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

Summary: Miranda, a sixth grader, receives strange notes about her future and must conclude that someone who knows her also somehow knows what is going to happen in her life.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Comments: Loved it more than I can say.

Catching Fire

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Summary: After wining the Hunger Games, Katniss and Peeta return home to find that nothing is as it was before, and their lives are more in danger than ever.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Comments: Almost as good as the first book, loved every single page!

The Time Traveler's Wife

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Summary: The love story between a woman and a man who involuntarily travels through time.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Comments: I had put off reading this book after hearing about its numerous offensive content (sex and F-words). But I finally gave in, deciding I would try to see past it. Now, having read it, I can't in good conscience recommend it to anyone. The sex and the F-words are both, in my opinion, way over the top and ruin what could have been an amazing book, one that is life changing. In other words, I couldn't see past it.

That being said, if you are not particularly sensitive to language and sex, it is an incredible story that sucked me in emotionally, even though I was determined not to get involved. Although the book jumps around in time, it is easy enough to follow and the ending, which ties everything together, is so fresh and new it is almost enough to salvage the rest of the book for me. Almost, but not quite.

Confessions of a Shopaholic

Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

Summary: Becky Bloomwood is a journalist at a financial magazine, but can't seem to get her own finances under control.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Comments: Much different from the movie. Fun read, nothing too spectacular.