Still hacking away at the 50 books in 365 days… I plan on reading a little today – then plenty next week while camping!
#15 Violets are Blue by James Patterson. Just when I think I've read everything that he has written, my mom leaves a book laying about that appears unfamiliar… Even when I started reading the book, featuring the character Alex Cross… I assumed I had read it, but then I came upon the vampire aspect of the novel, and I realized, no, I have not picked this one up before…
William knows this and now I will share with you all… I'm really over the whole vampire thing. Like really over it. Yes, I liked the Twilight series, and before that I read all the Ann Rice vampire series, but now it's just so overdone and everywhere!
Anyways, this book was good, but like I mentioned, the plot revolves around vampires. Enough already. However, I wish I could discover 345 books by James Patterson that I have not read – I like his style generally and find his books compelling and interesting.
#16 Hawkmoon by Nancy Williams. This was a very simple afternoon read. The story is about a young girl who is raised to be a violent horse thief in the frontier plains. It was a little predictable, but a good summer read. I enjoyed the historical aspect of it, and it reminded me that I like books that are set well in the past. Hmmm… I should look for some of those…
#17 Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer by John Grisham. This is a very easy read, and is probably a good novel for a tween. When I first started the novel I thought perhaps Mr. Grisham was attempting to re-create To Kill A Mockingbird, but after a few chapters, I realized that maybe somewhere in his subconscious he perhaps honouring the best book
(imho) ever written. I enjoyed the novel written from a young teen's perspective, with his
strict parents, and passion for the law. Theodore Boone is a quarky, cute character – I don't think he'll re-occur in another book – but it was pretty entertaining.
Here it is a new year, and I'm starting again with my goal of reading 50 books.
1) Bleachers by John Grisham. I have now read every book written by John Grisham, and by far this was my least favorite. It's not his typical legal thriller, but a simple story of man who grew up in a small town obsessed with highschool football, and the relationships that were created and destroyed as a result.
The story itself is probably one that many people from small American towns can relate to… where I live it could be translated into hockey. Although I love football – this book had too much of it, describing plays and games from over 15 years ago got pretty old, fast.
2) The Garden of Beasts by Jeffrey Deaver. This was an excellent story set in the rearmament period of pre WW2 Nazi Germany. The background for the story was intriguing, the author utilizing some historical fact with his compelling fiction. This was a
fantastic novel. I'm going to seek out more books by this author.
3) The Web by Jonathan Kellerman. This is a novel featuring the reoccurring character Alex Delaware. I had actually read this book about 10 years ago, and normally I remember the plot and details, but I kept turning the page on this one, not recalling much.
It's a good novel, typical of Jonathan Kellerman's style. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys books of this genre.
4) Witch & Wizard by James Patterson. I have a lot of respect for James Patterson. He has written some clever novels with the purpose of encouraging young readers, and this book is for a teenage audience.
It fell a bit short of my expectations. The Maximum Ride series is much more compelling.
I couldn't help but compare this book with regard to the general characters and plot, and even some of the specifics of the story, to the Harry Potter series… the leader, the one the kids fear the most sounded familiar, made up words relating to magic ability, prophecies, etc… I guess it's difficult to be completely original when writing a 'magical' feel in books with Harry Potter so dominant and even the Artemis Fowl, and Septimus Heap series rather popular.
It was… okay. If the next book fell into my lap I would probably read it - this one only took a few hours.
Okay, I've been busy. Here's my catch up…
#29 – 8th Confession by James Patterson. This was a typical James Patterson novel within his Women's Murder Club series. The pace of course was fast, the language, descriptive, but not annoyingly so. I found the plot a little simple and I'll even go as far to say it was a little underdeveloped (yeah, like I should have an opinion…) I think that Mr. Patterson keeps this series a little lighter, bordering on 'beach read'.
It was a good book and I will read the 9th installment. I won't run out and buy it, but I may stroll into the library a few months after it is released and see if it's available.
#30 – Final Warning by James Patterson. This is the fourth novel in Mr. Patterson's 'Maximum Ride' series. I really enjoy this series although the intended target reader is a teenager. These novels are action packed and even a little inspiring. The lead characters are good role models (although they are constantly kicking ass) and I feel much better about my 14 year old niece loving this series (she does) rather than the Twilight series (ugh, don't get me started).
At times I can't believe how well Mr. Patterson writes from the perspective of an angry, conflicted teenage girl. Some of the phrases he uses makes me laugh out loud. The global warming issue was a little overdone, but in general it was a great read.
The only dissapointing aspect of this novel was its length. It was short. I purchased the paperback for my niece and I quickly finished it and discovered a quarter of the book was previews for the next Maximum Ride novel, and 2 previews for Patterson's Daniel X series.
#31 – The Last Juror by John Grisham. I was positive that I had read every novel Grisham had ever written (except Skipping Christmas), and when I picked up this novel and began reading trying to jolt my memory I couldn't believe that I hadn't read it.
This was a good book – very typical in style and pace for a Grisham story. It was however, far from my favorite, but good nonetheless. I found this story to be a little less bloody and disturbing than other novels I have read, and that was actually nice. Certain character names in the book stuck in my head and I realized that a few characters were actually from the book/movie; A Time To Kill. I really enjoyed that crossover.
I would recommend this book to any fan of this genre.
#32 – The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. This book was lent to my by a good friend (and fellow reader) of mine. I picked it up several times throughout the day and finished it before dark. This is an autobiographic account of a woman who grew up in extreme poverty. A total page turner.
When I finished reading it – I was surprised that the idea of mental illness was never expressed. It seemed obvious to me that these parents had issues beyond alcoholism and whatever general nuttiness inspired the flightly, neglectful, and selfish behavior the mother continually exibited. Perhaps the author did this on purpose – I'm not sure. I also found the author a little detached from the story. She never really expressed how she felt… even physical pain wasn't discussed. I suppose one would have to detach themselves in order to survive. I was shocked by the conditions in which she was raised. Appalled. I couldn't understand or relate to her parents, and I was frustrated and angry with them. I wanted to reach into the pages and slap sense into her parents – the author did an excellent job expressing her childhood, in a straighforward way. I felt while reading it that the author felt a rush of release of issues that she might have carried from her childhood into her adult world. It was dispassionate and felt like the author took one deep breath, picked up a pen and didn't stop, or allow emotion until she exhaled, finished her story and put the pen back down.
This was an excellent book. Simple, to the point, and in your face disturbing. Jeannette Walls should certainly be proud of herself.