Monday, 6 January 2014

We fell off the face of the earth...

So I'm not too sure what happened to our little book club, it just kind of dwindled.  And that is okay.  I just hope everyone is still enjoying reading, and letting their imagination take them to much more exciting places that our current locations and situations.

And on that note I wanted to let you know what my top 10 books that I read in 2013. These are in no particular order:
**The Last Lecture* by Randy Pausch
Now I read this book while I was visiting the Thorson's in January.  It was such a perfect book to read to start out my year.  Now if only I had kept its message in my heart and mind throughout the year, maybe I would have had a better, more positive year.
**Warm Bodies** by Isaac Marion
I stumbled upon this book while on a stroll in Barnes & Noble and am so happy I got it.  I love the message in the book, and I really like the style of the author. I will have to see if he has written anything else.  Also I think this book has one of the best movie adaptations of any book I have read (and then seen.)
**Ender's Game** by Orson Scott Card
I read this book while I was making a really difficult decision in my life, and it seemed to be the perfect book to read while my life was changing at a rapid rate.  Now several of my friends have recommended this book to me, and I just can't believe it took me so long to read.  It is incredible! And I definitely will have to re-read it (and watch the movie.)
**Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter** by Seth Graham-Smith
Now I listened to this book on my drive to and from Oregon visiting the Thorsons in March. It was narrated by the author and oh my gosh it was so good! I have always been interested in Lincoln and this was such a great mix of a biography and fiction. Just amazing and the perfect book to drive to! (I wasn't a huge fan of the movie.  I mean the book itself was 10 cd's long ... not sure how many pages that is... but the movie was like 90 minutes... not long enough to go where the book took us.)
**Wave** by Sonali Deraniyagala
I got this book after having watch 'The Impossible'.  I still can't imagine living through such a horrific and tragic event.  This book will rip your heart out, shred it to pieces, and not fully heal it before the book is over... but that being said I am so grateful Sonali shared her story with us, and I pray that I can be as honest with myself in the tragedies of my life.
**Civil War Love Stories** by Gill Paul
This book was a fun fast read. You get to read about a dozen couples on both sides of the war. It is always wonderful to see glimpses of life's that have finished and to see how love was in another time. I recommend it to anyone that has an interest in history and families!
**Hounded: The Iron Druid Chronicles** by Kevin Hearne
Now this book was recommended here in the book club AND I LOVED IT! I have read the first 3 books of the series and then I got side tracked by other books to read, but I will need to go back and read the rest!
**World War Z** by Max Brooks
Now this was my 2nd book on cd that I read/listened to this year. I listened to this one when I drove up to Oregon in October. I love the format of this book, and I love the choice of voices in the book.  Another great attempt at a zombie book, but I love that this one is a take on what would/could happen if zombies are real and how the world could work together or fall apart trying to save humanity.  (I also enjoyed the movie, but it was vastly different then the book.)
**Silver Linings Playbook** by Matthew Quick
Now I saw the movie before I read the book, and I have to be honest... I like the movie better than I liked the book.  In the book it was harder to like the characters.  But I loved the book in tackling mental disorders.  The book seemed to delve deeply in the issues and I loved that... but I struggled with the interpersonal relationships.  Now the movie... I loved the relationships but I don't think it tackled all the issues the book did.  All in all I think you need to read the book and watch the movie to get the full picture.
**City of Bones** by Cassandra Clare
A friend of mine recommended the book series to me, and I have to say I enjoyed the first one.  I got distracted with other books so I haven't attempted any of the others, and I haven't seen the movie yet, but I like the world the author created and I loved the supporting characters!  A really fun summer read.
I'd love to hear about the books you read and loved in 2013, as well as those you are looking forward to reading this year.
Also... please let me know if anyone else wants to keep up the book club? I like that sometimes someone else gets to pick a book for me to read.

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Don't Panic and something about a Towel

Alright it is the end of another month middle of the next month, and it is time to talk about my book choice.

Now I have to say that I struggled in reading this book and didn't find myself in the mood to read it, but I did finish it and I think I will read the sequels at some point in my life. So I found some questions from other book clubs, so hopefully we can have a good discussion. =)

<b>1. What did you enjoy about Hitchhiker? What made you laugh?</b>
I really liked the character of Arthur Dent, I thought he was a great example of a how an ordinary person would handle the chaos of the first 50 pages or so. Plus I love the UK so that made me smile.  Not so happy about earth being destroyed though... =)
<b>2. The two most famous icons from the series are the towel and the phrase, "don't panic." Comment on that.</b>
I enjoyed "don't panic" and I think that is the best news for anything that happens in life. Now the towel part... I have to say I didn't really notice the towel thing. Maybe I completely forgot it or it is mentioned more in the next books.
3. The Hitchhiker series has permeated our popular culture. Some refer to its impact as "hitchhiker-mania," a phenomenon that has spun off a movie, TV series (with Stephen Hawkins, no less), and merchandise (towels and action figures). There are frequent references in rock, videogames, websites, and even an online translation service called Babel Fish! What is it about the series that inspires that kind of . . . following?
I really don't have a good opinion on why that is... I just know that a good deal of my friends enjoyed this book, and it is normally the ones that are a bit nerdier...

<b>Alright so I really wanted to get into discussing the book but to be honest I didn't love it, and I can't really get myself to talk about it.  So if you would like to discuss please feel free to do so... here are more questions, but I really don't have much to say about it, and am a bit disappointed in how much I didn't enjoy reading it.

Some non specific questions:
1. Did the book meet your expectations? Why/why not?
2. What elements of the book did you find particularly enjoyable? Did any of it annoy you? Why?
3. Why do you think this book continues to be popular, especially among college students and adolescents?
4. Adams's humor has been described as both sophomoric and as brilliant. Which term do you think best describes Adams's work?
5. How effective is Adams's use of the technique of flashback in the novel?
6. What unresolved questions or conflicts in the book would you hope to see addressed in its sequel?
7. Compare and contrast Adams's portrayal of space alien creatures in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy to those in other popular books and movies.
8. Is Arthur Dent a hero? If so, how? How would you describe his character?
9. How do Arthur and Ford Prefect relate to each other? What are the strengths and weaknesses of their friendship?
10. Compare the outlooks of the five principal characters – Arthur Dent, Ford Prefect, Zaphod Beeblebrox, Trillian and Marvin. How do they view the world? What are they looking for in life?
11. What does the book say about human beings? Is it a positive or negative view overall? How could this view of humanity affect the way someone lives?
12. How is the idea of God dealt with in the book? Do you agree or disagree with this perspective? Why?
13. How does the book treat the subject of religion? To what extent do you feel the treatment is fair?
14. Slartibartfast says he would “far rather be happy than right any day.” Do you think this is a good perspective to have on life? Why? What are the long-term difficulties with this approach?
15. On what basis do the characters decide issues of right and wrong? What justification is there for their approaches to morality?
16. What do you think Douglas Adams is suggesting with the number 42 being the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything? Why do you think the search for the question was repeatedly frustrated? What would be your answer to “Life, the Universe and Everything”?
17. What would you say is the Ultimate Question? How have you attempted to answer the question over the years? Do you think it matters whether or not there is any ultimate meaning in life? Why/why not?
18. If you could ask the author a question, what would it be?

Thursday, 16 May 2013

May, I guess I am doing May

So, I know this is a little late, but I have had a lot going on.  I am on my way to San Jose today, but before I left I wanted to post this so no one was in suspense any longer. ;)

Silent in the The Grave by Deanna Raybourn is a period mystery.  It is the first in five book series and I love them all.  Just so you are aware the book covers often look selacious, but they're not.  That doesn't there isn't plenty of romance to go with your mystery, there just isn't any descriptions.  Plus there are no bad words.  Oh, and did I mention they are funny too!  I hope you all love them as much as I do (the first one, we are only reading the first one),

Friday, 22 March 2013

Well... where did March go?

Alright, so March was a bit of a flop for us. I hope everyone enjoyed reading whatever books they have been reading on their own. I for one continued on our Iron-Druid series, I loved the second one, and I'm having a hard time sticking to the third... my mind seems to have jumped to other books. But I will get back to it! Thank you Heather for introducing me to another good book series!

Now April is my month again and I have decided to pick a book I started but never finished and I am not sure why that happened. (I blame my slight ADD for it... but who knows.) So we shall be reading "The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy" by Douglas Adams! Now my book has all of the Hitch-Hikers Trilogy (there are more than three books, so I'm unsure why it calls itself a trilogy) and I may attempt to read all of them in the month, but we shall see.

Monday, 4 February 2013

Fantastic February

Heather's February Book Suggestion

Ever since receiving the invite to this lovely blog, I’ve been on the edge of my seat and happily, quietly following along.  I confess I haven’t been able to do all of the monthly reads, but I’m always here in spirit, and reading along to the ones I can whenever I get a chance.  Ah, the price we pay when raising 4 children under age 6 plus a husband, and playing the role of aspiring writer and author in the couple of hours left over.  (Now you’ve already gathered that I like to write as much as I love to read, so the rest of me is not difficult to figure out either.  I am a domestic goddess, sassy lassy and SAHM.   Sarcastic, candid, a chocolate snob, blogger, writer, and not a bad singer either.)  Enough about me- on to the book of the month!

Hounded: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book One by Kevin Hearne

Now I know that urban fantasy novels have been overwhelmingly abundant for the past 10 years or so, and most of them aren’t even worth the paper they’ve been printed on, but I assure you, this one is different. The television, literary, and comic book allusions woven throughout this series make it an enjoyable read for almost anyone, from the traditional Shakespeare junkies to the “fracking cylon” haters, and everyone in between.  (The only downside to this book in my opinion has been the abundant use of the “F-dash-dash-dash word”.  I was willing to overlook it because the story itself is pleasingly plotted and very well written.)  The overall sense of humor and the twists and turns in plot were very satisfactory.  Not to mention, after reading books 1-5 and the novellas in between in less than a 3 week time span (that’s how you know I really love something: when I forsake sleep to get more of it), I unashamedly declare that the main character, Atticus, is more intelligent, masculine, and sexy than anything you’ve read about glittering vampires or the like for the last decade and, also, the next dog I adopt might possibly be named Oberon.  

I know I haven’t given you much to go on as of yet. That’s because there’s no point trying to restate something that was already stated well enough, therefore I have just given you the perfectly adequate synopsis off of

Happily, I can also add that the audio version of this series is just as good as reading it from print on your own. The author doesn’t have any dialectical hang-ups or speech impediments that will cause a subconscious stumbling block or distract you from the story in any way, and his ability to highlight and individualize all of the key characters is, truthfully, quite enjoyable and amusing.
For kicks and giggles, I've added some questions for discussion at the end of the month. 
  • Which character do you like the most and why? The least and why?
  • Did any passage from the book stand out to you?
  • Are there situations and/or characters you can identify with, if so how?
  • Did the first chapter hook you as a reader or did it take a while for you to get into the story?
  • At what point in the book did you decide if you liked it or not? What helped make this decision?
  • Name your favorite thing overall about the book. Your least favorite?
  • If you could change something about the book what would it be and why?
  • Describe what you liked or disliked about the writer’s style?
I hope you enjoy this book as much as I have, and I look forward to discussing it at the end of the month!

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

January's Book(s)

So we couldn't all agree on A book, so we will have options. Please read as many or all of the book options.

So far I've read:

Warm Bodies by Issac Marion

And I've started:

Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick

And I Plan to Read (by the end of the month)

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Now enjoy 2013 by reading some good books!!!

Monday, 31 December 2012

January's Book

So my very good friend Hilary is supposedly a part of this book club, but right now she is busy working and being pregnant... so we will need to pick a new book without her.

Does anyone have any books they are dying to read?

Here are my suggestions... let me know if you like any of them.

-Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
-Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion (I think Ella just read this)
-The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier &Clay by Michael Chabon
-Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
-Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
-The Swiss Famly Robinson by Johann David Wyss

All of these are on my nightstand, so any of them will make me happy... so you decide... and quickly so we can start reading!

I hope you all are having a great New Years Eve!!!! I hope 2013 is a great year for all!