Fiction

Juliet, Naked–Nick Hornby

Music lovers listen up: this book is for you.

It was however, not for me.

It drags on in the beginning and then only got really good around the last 50 pages.

I want to like Nick Hornby’s stuff, but I just don’t think it’s in the cards for me. My sister had an unpleasant reading of one of his other books as well, and I don’t know if I’ll carry on with his books unless someone can suggest one that I’ll really REALLY like.

Anyway, this book was about a couple, Duncan and Annie, where Duncan is obsessed with a singer by the name of Tucker Crowe that just disappeared after a heated fight with his girlfriend in a public bathroom. 20 years ago.

Annie eventually begins to correspond with Tucker Crowe after she voices her opinion on a fan website that contradicts what all his “true” fans are saying about his new album ‘Juliet, Naked’ where it’s the stripped down version of the original album he made.

This was an okay book. Don’t get me wrong, I like music, but like Annie, I’m not IN that world or obsessive about it. Not like I am the world of cross stitch (which I’m well aware sounds incredibly insane.) . We all have our things and music, while amazing and soul-healing, isn’t something I’m GOTTA HAVE IT about when it comes to records or albums.

I just love it in the sense of what it makes me feel when it wanders into my life.

This book was difficult for me to focus on because of that.

Which is why I say: it’s for music lovers. You’ll be into it. Maybe.

I don’t know your life. Constant vigilance.

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Fantasy, Fiction, young adult

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children–Ranson Riggs

We’ve made it out of the Roald Dahl vortex. Thank God.

I was originally reading this book because I had been interested in it for awhile and then the movie was coming out, so naturally, I was trying to prep myself for the movie!

And then I never went and saw the movie.

I hold all the logic in my hands, don’t I?

Anyway, this book freaked me out. But only because there were pictures of what everyone looks like in it and the pictures are creepy as all hell. Nobody likes old timey circus photos Ransom Riggs! NOBODY.

On the whole though, this book was really good. I liked Jacob, and the back story of why he can see things others can’t, I enjoyed the entire plot, the writing was great, I really look forward to reading more of these. (And finally watching the movie.)

Maybe I’m just saying that because I can’t take anymore kid books though.

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Fiction, Teen

Ballroom Blitz

I’ve been pretty busy these last few mon–years. Things have gotten out of control and I’m only JUST starting to patch things together to make them workable.

One of those things being writing “reviews”, which at this point they are more or less just blurbs on like “Read it if you feel like it” and “HOLY HELL THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING”. Either way, things have gotten pretty laissez-faire around here. Which was my whole life until I realized that I needed to pull myself together because I’m reviewing books from last summer and I have no clue what to write about them.

Which is why I labelled this segment: Ballroom Blitz.

Because I’m going to throw a bunch of tentatively labelled “reviews” at you.

Bunheads–Sophie Flack

‘Bunheads’ was on my summer reading list last year it was a nice beach book for sure.

Not intense in content, but still a decent story and plot. It’s about ballerinas, one in particular, and you follow their story of competitiveness, heartbreak, life, and their need to dance.

It was really well written (unlike these reviews), and I look forward to finding something else of hers in the future.

Definitely take this on a trip with you.

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The Invisible Ones–Stef Penney

This book was pretty decent given that I didn’t know what I was walking into. The plot centres around gypsies and their lifestyle, but only because one of them goes missing and a cop is trying to suss out what happened.

It was well written and I look forward to reading some of the authors others books.

I liked reading about gypsies, and I enjoyed the characters and the plot twists.

Definitely a good mystery for anyone looking for one.

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The Night We Said Yes–Lauren Gibaldi 

This book was sent in one of my OwlCrate boxes, I was interested in reading it since it was all about how these people spent a night (you guessed it) saying ‘Yes’ to everything.

It was a silly story and definitely more for teens than even Young Adults. I’m neither, but still, it should’ve had a little more juice to it. It barely had any meat on its bones, and it was the first book from OwlCrate that I was really really disappointed in.

Handed it off to head to a thrift store. Hopefully some tween will enjoy it more than I did.

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Next week will focus solely on Roald Dahl’s works.

Constant vigilance!

 

Comedy, Fiction, Uncategorized

The Dollhouse–The Kardashians

Judge me if you will but I have a sick curiosity about books written not just by celebrities but collaborations. How do three people write a novel?

A better question would be: How much did these three women really contribute to this book? I’m betting there was a great deal of work done by a fourth woman on this.

Although I could totally see Khloe writing a book on her own. And Kourtney seems pretty put together business-wise and like she would just randomly be like ‘I’m going to write a book’. I guess the only one I don’t really believe did this is Kim. And that’s not because I think she’s dumb or anything like that, I actually think she’s quite clever and has a good head for business. (Yes, I am a Kardashian supporter, even if I’ve stopped watching the show.) I just don’t think she’s interested in writing.

That being said, I was, as always with books like this, surprised that I enjoyed even a quarter of it.

The book is based on the three girls lives, but they have made up characters for them. Naturally all with K names. But they are all working for their mother in a family owned restaurant, one who gets fame sooner than the others, one that gets pregnant out of nowhere, and the third who happens to like to make out with her step brother.

It was surreal. It was odd. But it wasn’t terrible.

Given that the writing likely belonged to someone else it was fairly good in that it had a lot of drama and frivolity without being completely over the top and idiotic.

And while I don’t see a sequel ever coming, it wasn’t the worst book I’ve ever read. It actually made me laugh. Like, a real laugh. Not a sarcastic one.

Good summer read for sure.

Konstant vigilance. (See what I did there?)

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Fiction, Kids Books

Black Beauty–Anna Sewell

This might seem like an odd choice for me since I’m not a 9 year old girl with a horse obsession.

And if you ARE…don’t read this book kid. You’ll cry yourself to sleep.

I read books to my little cousin so he falls asleep at nap time to something magical.

My voice. Haha.

I like to read things in a soothing tone so he zonks out feeling safe and warm as we snuggle up.

I’m also trying to trick him into a love of books that his family members don’t 100% have. I’ve partially tricked the older boy with Percy Jackson books, I’ve mildly hooked the girl with A Series of Unfortunate Events (and some Roald Dahl), and I’ve been reading to Sir Toddlesworth since I started here. So hopefully it’ll stick.

Anyway…this book was the devil.

I totally thought that Black Beauty was all about horses and the girl that is featured on the cover. About their love and friendship. It was not about that. It was about this horses life and how miserable as hell it was. From beatings, to starvation, to everything in between that you would hate to hear happened to a horse: it was in this book.

This is not a children’s book and whoever tells you it is is a bastard coated bastard with bastard filling.

I had to cut out things, censor what I said to the kid, and it was because there were drunks, there was tragic deaths, accidental deaths, and worst of all: A horses death.

I’m not into reading about animals dying. People, sure. It happens. But animals are magical and wonderful and nothing bad should happen to them ever because they are pure wild spirits and nothing should hurt them.

This book also taught me that humans are the worst.

Don’t read this. Don’t let anyone you know read this.

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Biography, Comedy, Fantasy, Fiction, Kids Books

The Short Stack.

Good morning everyone!

I’m clearing house of the tiny reviews. So here’s four to take a gander at.

Summer of My Amazing Luck—Miriam Toews

Literally only picked this up because I knew it was set in the summer. (Book challenge #14-A Book Set in the Summer [26BooksWithBringingUpBurns 2015.])

What a treat it was though! I love this writer, she’s really in tune with empathy over sympathy. It’s very interesting to read her books because they are about real humans and their struggles.

All about people living on welfare and their troubles, stories, and how they rise or fall.

Definitely interesting to pick up. In this you follow Lucy through how she got to the Have-A-Life welfare housing, how she makes friends, and then ends up on a road trip with her friend Lish to find a fire eater that knocked her up awhile ago.

Very cool take, I can’t gush enough about this writer, but I’ll stop for your sake.

Truly great.

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I Feel Bad About My Neck (And Other thoughts on being a woman)—Nora Efron

Okay. This also might seem like an odd choice for me to read but hear me out:

I was reading a lot of female authors and was like ‘Hey. This lady writes sweet movies and books and maybe she has some perspective as well on being a woman that would interest me like the last five!”

Well unless you are over 50, don’t bother with this.

I found it quite boring and useless. Which sounds awful since I do like her movies, but I didn’t gain anything from this or learn anything besides ‘I never want to get old’.

*Audience booing*

To be completely fair to her: I will read her other books in the future, I just happened to pick a dud for my age group. Her writing was good, I just didn’t connect to what she was going through and didn’t much care for her stories.

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(#16 A Book You Learned About Because of this Challenge….this might be a stretch I think, I was just trying to fill in holes. But I did learn about this because of the other books I was looking through for this challenge, so that has to count.)

The Pilot’s Wife—Anita Shreve

Someone suggested this to me when I lived in Vancouver and it’s been sitting around on my shelves ever since.

That’s how backed up my reading list is. I’m hitting living at home for two years already.

Jesus Christ I need to get my shit together.

Anyway.

This book is about a woman (obviously) who’s husband was a pilot.

Shocker. Haha.

Her husbands plane goes down and she has to deal with all that comes with it. Including their teenage daughter and her grief.

I really loved this book actually, it was beautifully written, not overwhelming with emotions and drama, and enough mystery to hold my attention.

Thank you to the random lady in Vancouver who suggested that I read Anita Shreve’s books. I’m excited to read more of her stuff in the future.

(#18 A book with a blue cover.)

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Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Yuletide Yahoos, Ho-Ho-Humblebraggers, and Other Seasonal Scourges—Jen Mann

This book jumped the line because I was in the mood for a holiday laugh. (I read this around Christmas) My cousins family gave this to me. (I’m their nanny and I get all the good stuff from them. Including baby snuggles!)

It was hysterical. And accurate as all hell.

Start to finish had me laughing. And nodding like ‘I feel ya girl!”.

Definitely worth it for a present to someone with a sense of humour around the holidays. Or for a treat for yourself because it was awesome.

Short and sweet and to the point. Just like this review.

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Bunnicula—Deborah and James Howe

Another present from a family member, my Auntie Jo (or as she calls herself Aunt Torage. Best word play of life.) I was presented with this for my birthday because I love bunnies, I love horror, and I love ridiculous novels written for children.

This was a good and spoooOOOoooky read.

Okay, it was all right. It IS for kids after all. But it was pretty cute and funny and I’m sure some kid somewhere is having nightmares about this rabbit.

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Happy Monday everyone! Constant vigilance!

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