Thursday, February 25, 2016

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling and Mary GrandPré

Confession time: I have been attempting to read, Harry Potter since it first came out. I've picked up the book more time than I can count, read a few pages or chapters and was done. I simply could NOT get into it. This year, I made the choice to pick it up again and give it one last try. I am glad, I did.

I feel in love with this book and the characters and am looking forward to reading the rest of the series. It's quirky, cute and an easy escape from the realities of life. The characters and the story lines really make you pull from the imagination center of your brain and enter the world of magic, friendship and the the complexities of life.

I think it is safe to say most people know the premise of this book but just in case......It is essentially about this boy, Harry Potter who's parents were murdered when he was a child. He was sent to live with his family of, muggles (humans who do not possess magic). Harry himself is not aware that he has magical abilities or is famous amongst those who inhabit the magic world.

When, Harry is of age he is sought by those of the magical world and when found he is sent to attend school at Hogwarts and learn magic. He enters an unknown world but manages to make friends and find a comfort level within himself that he didn't have among the muggles. Harry and his friends ban together and the rest..... you have to read for yourself.

Grade: A

Monday, February 22, 2016

The Life We Bury by Allen Eskens

Joe Talbert is a college student and he is tasked with writing an brief biography of a stranger. Joe decided he will visit a nearby nursing home and seek a willing subject. This is when, Carl Iverson enters his life, changing the lives of both of them forever.

Carl is dying of his cancer and has been released from prison and sent to this nursing home to live out what little time he has left. Carl is a Vietnam Vet and a convicted murderer. Carl and Joe from a bit of a bond and Joe starts to dig into this 30 year old case and finds that it is buried in secrets.

As with many good books, Esken's introduces characters to add life, intrigue and conflicts to an already busting at the seams story line.

This is a page turning, keep you on your toes investigation novel. You won't want to pass this one up.
I only have one complaint and it we don't get any feedback on the success or failure of the assignment from the professor.

Grade: A

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Fragile and Perfectly Cracked: A Memoir of Loss and Infertility by Sophie Wyndham

Fragile and Perfectly Cracked is a heartbreaking memoir. This tiny little book packs a lot of punch in the emotion department. It is only 68 pages, long!

Sophie and her husband are ready to have a baby but they are struggling to conceive. When they do conceive after failed attempts it ends in miscarriage. Sophie is brutally honest and at times graphic but it's needed in order to give reality to the situation at hand. Be prepared for an emotional ride, Sophie's run off the page.

This is an excellent book to read if you are going through infertility, miscarriage(s), stillbirths or know someone who has.

Grade: Excellent book, I recommend it but will not put a "grade" on it due to the nature of the subject.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Among the Ten Thousand Things by Julia Pierpont

Eleven year old, Kay is distraught when she opens a box of letters delivered to her mom. She shares it with her brother who promptly contacts his mother and gives her the box of letters detailing the affair between his father and another women.

The news is devastating and Kay is understandably outraged, Pierpoint used this junction to take us back into time and the start of the relationship between Kay and Jake detailing their lives.  The first half of the book is enthralling but the second half .... slows down and while entertaining it just doesn't hold up to the first portion but don't fear reader it picks back up and makes all the time you've put into it worth it.

Pierpont often gives you the feeling of being that fly on a wall feeling. Her characters are beautifully crafted and flawed and oddly enough you can relate to all of them on different levels.

Expect an unprecedented move in which, Pierpont reveals the end in the middle of the book!

Grade: B

Saturday, February 6, 2016

The Missing by Melanie Florence

In Winnipeg women and girls go missing. It's brushed under the rug by authorities but when, Feather's friend Carli and then Mia go missing, Feather makes it a mission to uncover the truth. Everyone becomes suspect and the reader finds it just as difficult to find the perpetrator. 

Feather is a young teenage girl who is determined and smart.  The story has many twists and turns, keeping you entertained. You will find yourself second guessing characters right along with, Feather.

Then, Feather's brother, Kiowa gets arrested for, Mia's murder the heat is turned up and the stakes are higher then ever. 

This is a fast, short read, coming out at 192 pages. Perfect for a plane ride of a lazy day.

Grade: B 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Wildflower by Drew Barrymore

"We may not be able to do them all, but it is a safe place to dream. And sometimes, if you really work hard enough, dreams come true." — Drew Barrymore  (Wildflower)

I love, love Drew Barrymore!

This book is not a memoir or a biography , it doesn't follow a chronological order. It is a collection of memories.

This book will make you laugh, tear up and shake your head. You will get some insight into the life of a young, Drew Barrymore. She's honest and upfront about her  life, her challenges, mistakes and accomplishments. If you are expecting a tell all or gritty details about her misaligned youth or her past relationships, this book is not for you.

Drew has overcome her past and flourished. She's an inspiration. This is a good read for those who love, Barrymore.

Grade: A

The Accidental Beauty Queen by Teri Wilson

Charlotte Gorman is a librarian, a "nerd" and enjoys being casual and comfy. Her twin sister, Ginny is an famous instagram conte...