Friday, August 29, 2008

All We Know of Heaven by Jacquelyn Mitchard


Reading this was like standing in a long line that hasn't moved for half an hour. I kept up with it, turning page after page in hopes that it too would improve. This "book" is loosely based on the true life events of Whitney Cerak and Laura VanRyn and rather than interest me, it helped me catch up on some much needed Z's (I am an insomniac).


Pick up the book (you can even get in FREE ebook format) of Mistaken Identity rather than read this . It must be said that the premise was good but the delivery was poor and rather boring. This is more of a love story than a story of two best friends, one dead, on alive and the aftermath of finding out who you thought was dead was alive and vice versa.



Grade: D

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin

Life is about the choices we make and things are no differnt from Ellen. Giffin's novel, Love the one You're with is by far my favorite of her novels, it is about present love, past love and realizing what love is yours.

Love is a complicated matter and I think most people are tied up thinking about "what if" this book is about the one who got away and the one you have.


Fast, enjoyable read. You will feel Ellen's emotions and ride the rollercoaster of emotions with her.


Synopsis
Ellen's relationship to Andy doesn't just seem perfect on the surface, it really is perfect. She loves his family, and everything about him, including that he brings out the best in her. That is, until Ellen unexpectedly runs into Leo. The one who got away. The one who brought out the worst in her. The one she can't forget. This is the story about why we chose to love the ones we love, and why we just can't forget the ones who aren't right for us.



Grade: A

Saturday, August 23, 2008

PERFECT YOU by Elizabeth Scott

Perfect you is teen angst at it's best. A father who quits his job to sell vitamins, at a booth, in the mall, leaving you family in financial ruin.

A childhood best friend who loses weight, dyes her hair blond, becomes popular and pretends you don't' exist.

A boy you secretly make out with behind closed doors...

Dysfunction at it's best, the nosey grandmother, the annoying other brother and parents who make poor choices resulting in negative consequences for the family.

Kate Brown has had a terrible year (sorta, lets not forget the cute guy) and this novel gives you insight into her life and how she copes with typical and above typical teen life.

Fast, easy and enjoyable read.



Grade: A

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Tweak by Nic Sheff


Tweak is brutally honest and Nic takes you into his drug infested life and his fight to stay sober despite his intense urges to use, use and use.

Nic gives us a view of his life and that quest for his next fix. Nic gives a compelling look into his life and how it is ruled by drugs. Nic tells what his drug life is like, how he is willing to do anything for that next hit. He describes his life in great detail seldom sparing details.

His honesty makes this memoir a page turner and a heart breaker. Must read for teens as a method of drug prevention. This book is so honest you have to take time away from it to soak in what is being said otherwise you are in emotion overload.

This memoir is just a glimpse into the life of an addict. I'm sure Nic whet through a lot more than he tell us and he tells us quite a bit.


Grade: A

Monday, August 18, 2008

Lost It by Kristen Tracy


Lost Its Tess Whistle , is you guessed it a Teen girl who lose it... However this book is more than just losing your virginity, it is also about losing fears, key's and changes in relationships.

Lost It should not be read by young teens since it deals with mature subjects, such as making a personal choice to have sex and then the actual sexual encounter(s) itself.

Lost It is a quick read and can easily be read in one sitting within a few hours.

Synopsis:
What would you do...
...if your best friend were plotting the annihilation of a small, furry neighborhood poodle? Or if your parents up and moved to an Outward Bound-type survival camp in the middle of the desert? How about if your grandmother bought you new bras and underwear -- and you actually thought they were a teensy bit, umm, sexy?
Most people would not react well.
Tess Whistle's junior year of high school is off to a fairly bizarre start. One might even say her life is spiraling out of control. But with her sense of humor firmly intact and her first real boyfriend on her arm, Tess is dealing with the ridiculous twists quite well, thankyouverymuch.
Just wait until her shoes explode.
Grade: B-

This Charming Man by Marian Keyes


This Charming Man is another hit for Marian Keyes. Her characters are well developed and despite dark episodes in this novel, Keyes still causes laugh aloud moments.

Keyes tackles a tougher subject matter than ever before. She writes about violence, alcoholism and sexuality. Keyes who's roots started in chick-lit addresses serious matters in this novel making one sympathetic to characters.

This book can't simply be compared to her others because it is not a "fluffy' chick-lit novel it takes on much more important issues and stands alone.


Synopsis:
With This Charming Man, Marian Keyes hits her stride as a novelist with her best novel yet, telling the stories of four women who are shaped by one man.Paddy de Courcy is Ireland's debonair politician, the "John F. Kennedy Jr. of Dublin." His charm and charisma have taken hold of the country and the tabloids, not to mention our four heroines: Lola, Grace, Marnie, and Alicia. But though Paddy's winning smile is fooling Irish minds, the broken hearts he's left in his past offer a far more truthful look into his character.
Grade: A-

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Beach House by Jane Green


The Beach House is a different type of novel for Green however this does not take away the appeal and enjoyment of this book. Green is known for her Chick-lit genre and this novel does not fit into that category.

The Beach house is comprised of several life stories from different individuals who are all going through a life changing event and find a degree of peace on Nantucket Island.

This characters are developed and some jump off the pages however if you expect the same type of writing as in Jemima J and her other novels you need to clear your mind and have a fresh slate. The Beach House is not Green's usual work and is based more on the lives and events of middle-aged adults and the struggles of divorce, having children, being a homosexual in a heterosexual marriage and looking for a love your have never had.

This book examines relationships on several levels, this quick read will keep you entertained
!


Grade: B+

Monday, August 11, 2008

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer


As a fan of the, Twilight Series, I too had been anxiously awaiting Breaking Dawn. The book while not disappointing was quite predictable and not nearly as great as the 3 previous novels in this series.

It was heavy on the drama but then what vampire life wouldn't be? There were many things I disliked about the book but there were many things I did like. I am glad to see the in many ways, Bella has grown but I missed the sweet relationship aspect between Bella and Edward.

Breaking Dawn kept me interested if nothing else, I wanted to see if the ended was what I thought it would be (it was!). The book kept me entertained and I liked that the characters were a bit different than in the previous books because we all change over time and by maintaining the same persona life would be quite boring.

I know there are a lot of negative reviews out there but it isn't nearly as terrible as everyone claims. I think a lot of people didn't like it because it is quite different from the previous books.



Grade: B

Friday, August 8, 2008

Stolen Lives: Twenty Years in a Desert Jail by Malika Oufkir (Author), Michele Fitoussi (Author), Ros Schwartz (Author)


Stolen Lives is an incredible and powerful story of a families struggle for freedom. However if you don't have knowledge of Moroccan History this book can be a bit confusing at times because you have little to no background information.

Stolen lives gives you a glimpse into the conditions of a rich family use to an extravagant life style who are suddenly imprisoned and placed in horrid conditions. This book is about a family's courage to stay strong, united and eventually escape in order to become free again.

This novel lacks personality but don't let that sway you from reading and learning about the violation of human rights.





Synopsis
A gripping memoir that reads like a political thriller--the story of Malika Oufkir's turbulent and remarkable life. Born in 1953, Malika Oufkir was the eldest daughter of General Oufkir, the King of Morocco's closest aide. Adopted by the king at the age of five, Malika spent most of her childhood and adolescence in the seclusion of the court harem, one of the most eligible heiresses in the kingdom, surrounded by luxury and extraordinary privilege.

Grade: C

Monday, August 4, 2008

Beauty Queen by Linda Glovach

Beauty Queen is written in diary format, the reading itself easy quick and easy however the book is predictable. The character is suppose to be 19 but she writes as though she was 13. This book is they story of a young girl who travels down a fast spiralling dark journey of drugs, sex and low self esteem. It lacks substance and reality.

Beauty Queen does is not very detailed and it leaves out very important parts of addiction. They synopsis and cover are the most interesting part of this book. I would have rather read about the authors own addiction with drugs. Skip it and move on to another book on your list.





Synopsis
I felt the prick of the needle, but only for a second, because this great rush of warmth quickly followed, encompassing my whole body from my toes right up to the top hair on my head. I couldn't move for a minute as she guided the needle in and out of my vein. When she was done, I felt like I had entered heaven. I looked in the mirror and felt beautiful and confident. I felt this great peace, at last, a warmth, and I knew that everything was going to be okay--and really always had been. Like time had stopped and I was floating on a cloud.
"Writing the book, I saw my old dope dealer and bought $1,500 worth of pure heroin--Brown Gold--and started shooting up ten times a day to get the feel of the book. Well, I did, all right. I ended up in Glen Cove General, almost dead. In truth, you make a deal with the Devil. He takes away your pain, but he owns you. You live for the next fix. After a while, it's totally physical; your body has to have it. But I'm off it for good."-- Linda Glovach

Grade: D

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Train Wreck by Donna Hogan

This book was in the the 3 dollar bin at the grocery store (I paid 3 dollars too much!). Donna Hogan is atrocious and one could go as far as to say jealous of Anna Nicole Smith's life and popularity while alive and dead.

This book and I call it that loosely is poorly written, repetitive and lacks organization. This leads me to believe that Donna Hogan really didn't know her sister Anna Nicole and is using her as a means to attain some degree of fame, this reader is not won over.

I thought this book would shed some unknown FACTS about Anna Nicole rather than general topics already known and rehashed in the media. This "book" has more photos of Donna and her friends rather than ANS. This book is just Hogan's attempt at her 15 min of fame.

Keep in mind reader that I am not nor have been a fan of ANS so my review is not based on liking her since I really don't have any opinion of her.

Synopsis
She was the most outlandish, outrageous, in-your-face symbol of the age - and suddenly, shockingly, she was gone. In life her antics, adventures and behavior kept a nation riveted; indeath she stunned a world gripped by the surprise and swiftness of her unexpected passing. The woman was, of course, Anna Nicole Smith. This is the story of the little girl from west of nowhere, born into a broken, dysfunctional, dirt-poor family, told by the one woman who knew her best - her sister. Her fierce resolve, pluck, luck and determination allowed her to claw her way to celebrity status, becoming a tabloid staple, and to reach the potential of unimaginable wealth. And then, in a moment, she was gone, not yet 40 years old. A Horatio Alger story with a bitter ending, TRAIN WRECK- The Life and Death of Anna Nicole Smith, is the definitive story of the rise and swift fall of one of the most compelling characters to blaze across the American sky.

Grade: D-

Friday, August 1, 2008

Promise Not To Tell by Jennifer McMahon


This novel will keep you up all night. I was snuggled up under the blankets, jumping at ever sound, my heart beating fast, my palms sweat but I kept on reading up until a little past five this morning.

It normally takes a lot to frighten me, heck I don't even blink at "scary" movies but the end of this book was addicting, frightening and riveting.

This is perhaps the creepiest, most nerve racking ghost story I've read or my lack of sleep made everything much more scarier than it really was!

This novel is full of secrets, secrets friends, lovers, betrayals and sexual abuse. This novel will captivate you. Terrific first book for McMahon she has a lot to live up to in her next novels... not quite sure she will be able to recapture it, it's THAT good!

Go read the sample chapter at barnesandnoble.com, I promise you'll be running out to purchase this book!


Synopsis:
Forty-one-year-old school nurse Kate Cypher has returned home to rural Vermont to care for her mother who's afflicted with Alzheimer's. On the night she arrives, a young girl is murdered—a horrific crime that eerily mirrors another from Kate's childhood. Three decades earlier, her dirt-poor friend Del—shunned and derided by classmates as "Potato Girl"—was brutally slain. Del's killer was never found, while the victim has since achieved immortality in local legends and ghost stories. Now, as this new murder investigation draws Kate irresistibly in, her past and present collide in terrifying, unexpected ways. Because nothing is quite what it seems . . . and the grim specters of her youth are far from forgotten.
More than just a murder mystery, Jennifer McMahon's extraordinary debut novel, Promise Not to Tell, is a story of friendship and family, devotion and betrayal—tautly written, deeply insightful, beautifully evocative, and utterly unforgettable.


Grade: A+

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

The Lying Game comes out, July 25th One text " I need you" has Isa, Kate, Fatima and Thea reuniting. The 4 women meet in t...