It is good I did not review Lemonade Mouth before I finished it. Had I, I might not have had very nice things to say. About one-third of the way through it got really interesting and by the end I was cheering for all five main characters. It is really an ensemble novel, told from the point of view of five high school freshman who form a band during detention one afternoon. Wen is from the novel I Am the Wallpaper, though Floey Packer, from that novel, makes only a brief appearance in this book. There are also Stella, Mo, and Olivia, an interesting mix of misfit musicians. The group is completed by Charlie, the unorthodox drummer. Looks like the author Mark Peter Hughes released another book this summer, A Crack in the Sky, a post-apocalyptic story of the type so popular now since the Hunger Games trilogy, which by the way is brilliant and you should read it...if you have not already, in which case you know exactly what I am talking about. Since I enjoyed both books by Hughes I will give this new one a try; I am interested to see how he fares in the science- fiction genre.
I bought a new book yesterday...it just wanted to jump into my hands, BUT I had to work on a project that is due for class Saturday AND I already have a list I want to read NOW. (Clearly I have a problem.) What I bought is The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown. It is about three sisters who love books, in fact the whole family does, and whose father is a Shakespeare professor who named them for various Shakespearean heroines. (Just like me...well the book loving part, though I did have a cat named Beatrice - A gold star to the first commenter who knows what play she is from.)
...kids books. From the School Library Journal website, "School Library Journal's Battle of the Kids' Books is a competition between 16 of the very best books for young people of the year, judged by some of the biggest names in children's books."
And here is a convenient link to the site (Click here) so you can check out the contenders. I have read a few of them and others are definitely on my "To Read..." list AND as usual there are a few I am not familiar with. Which means...more books for my extensive list of those I just NEEEEEED to read. I may have to quit my job in order to read all day!
Nancy Pearl is a librarian extraordinaire who seemingly knows everything about all sorts of books. This link will take you to a brief interview with her. And the website is cool on its own because it has interviews with lots of other authors and interesting people connected to books who are - writing them, publishing them, buying them, selling them, loaning them and of course...reading them!
a sweet book. I Am the Wallpaper is about a 13 year old girl who feels like she is the equivalent of wallpaper...there, but not noticed. After Floey's evil cousins move in for a three week stay, and her beautiful, popular sister leaves for her honeymoon Floey decides to get noticed. And as the saying goes "Be careful what you wish for." The book touches on friendship and self-confidence issues as well as love and growing up. It is a nice story with an interesting use of Floey's diary and a website. Next up is Lemonade Mouth, also by Mark Peter Hughes.
While I love YA and children's literature I think I am going to need to do some adult reading next....perhaps Silent in the Moor so I can FINALLY find out what happens with Lady Julia and Brisbane.
..especially when it is a reading challenge. I just signed up to participate in the 2011 Historical Fiction Challenge. I love historical fiction and have already read a few of the titles. (I will write about them a bit later.) I am excited to get started. I signed up for "Severe Bookaholism" or 20 or more titles from the list this year!
Last night I finished A Stranger in Mayfair by Charles Finch. There are three other books in the series, A Beautiful Blue Death, The September Society, and The Fleet Street Murders. I enjoyed them all , but this fourth one a bit less than the other three. It seems now the characters are established, they are not developing.
If you have read the first three I would give the fourth a chance; Iwill also give the fifth a chance before I give up completely. With these types of mysteries the draw is the sleuth and his life as much as the mystery. I would like to see more progression in Charles Lennox's marriage and friendship with his butler and Dallington. Maybe it was that there were too many subjets (marriage, Parliament, promotion of the butler, the murder, godparenting, and Dallington's training) to address any in detail. It is like they say in fashion, "Take one thing off before you leave the house." This book needed just one less topic so that the others could be explored more deeply.
Tonight I will begin I Am the Wallpaper (2007) a young adult title by Mark Peter Hughes. I will follow it with Lemonade Mouth (2008)from the same author. Neither is new, but I only recently discovered them via my favorite book blog...Bookshelves of Doom. I am looking forward to both!
I have never written a blog before, this will be my first, but I read so many interesting blogs that I thought I would like to give it a try. Mostly I read blogs about books, because I am interested in books so I think my blog will mostly be about books….maybe.
One reason to begin this blog is because I read a lot of books, and outside the shelves in my house, I do not have any record of what I have read. I can peruse the shelves and be reminded, but I am beginning to realize my memory is fallible and details of books are escaping me the more I read. I do not want to write to ruin books for anyone else, if I am lucky enough to have a blog someone beside myself reads, but I do want to celebrate the good books I read and share them with others.
Another reason to have a blog is to engage in exchange with others who love books and want to talk about them as well. I also realize I am going to have to be a lot more interesting if I want anyone to read this….maybe my parents will, but I would like to be interesting enough to entice some other book lovers to comment and maybe read something I have discussed. Since becoming a librarian, I have also found myself reading more about books and writing and find myself more and more intrigued by writing. Maybe this is a way to get myself to write consistently then write more widely as well.
I have been reading a series by Deanna Raybourn featuring amateur sleuth Lady Julia Grey and Nicholas Brisbane, professional sleuth and man of mystery. I have read the first two, Silent in the Grave and Silent in the Sanctuary and enjoyed them a great deal. Lady Julia is of course a woman ahead of her Victorian times. The dialogue is snappy and the plot moves quickly. I do not like mysteries in which there is no chance the reader can figure it out, but on the other hand I do not like when the mystery is so transparent I have it figured out by the second or third chapter. So far this series fits nicely between the two. Sometimes I find when I read a mystery series that the author uses the same devices throughout and by the fourth or fifth book it becomes too easy to figure out, that is when I take the lot down to the used book store to look for something more challenging. Another element to love about Lady Julia and Brisbane is the well-written romantic tension. It is clear something will happen between them, but what? and when? The delay is as tantalizing for the reader as it must be for them. There is a third book in this series called Silent on the Moor, then another book that begins what appears to be a second trilogy beginning with Dark Road to Darjeeling. So far these books are engaging, enjoyable, but not so taxing on the brain as to be inappropriate before trying to sleep.
You will find I am a fan of the somewhat genteel British sleuth, like Thomas and Charlotte Pitt, and William Monk from Anne Perry, Jane Austen from Stephanie Barron, Mary Russell from Laurie King, Ellie Haskell from Dorothy Cannell, and now Charles Lenox from Charles Finch. Add to this list Isabel Dalhousie from Alexander McCall Smith, though she is Scottish. I like my mysteries intriguing and good exercise for the brain, but not too gory or bloody, usually. (I did read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, which was a good story, but more graphic than I usually prefer, I continued though to The Girl who Played with Fire and The Girl who Kicked the Hornt's Nest and found them much more entertaining and less disturbing than the first book.) Outside of sleuths from the UK, I am fond of Stephanie Plum from Janet Evanovich, (being a native Jersey girl myself), Karen Pelletier from Joanne Dobson, and one of my all-time favorites is Kate Fansler from Amanda Cross (pseudonym of Carolyn Heilbrun who committed suicide in 2003). Newly discovered are another Brit, Israel Armstrong, bookmobile librarian, from Ian Sansom and 11 year old Flavia de Luce from Alan Bradley. I keep thinking of more, I also like Molly Murphy and Lady Georgiana both from Rhys Bowen. Lord Charles and Kate Sheridan from Robin Paige are good as well. If you know anything about any of these mystery series you can see the pattern.
Last night I read Scumble by Ingrid Law who also wrote Savvy, which was a Newbery Honor Book in 2009. Scumble is not really a sequel, but it does mention the characters from Savvy. In Scumble, Ledge, who has just turned 13, the age when your savvy appears, is left at his uncle’s house for the summer in order to learn from older cousins, his uncle, and his grandfather, how to scumble his savvy so he can go home and back to school without accidentally destroying anything.
It seems I have filled my first post with talk of mysteries and two children's books, a bit mixed but that is the way I read; hopping from one genre to another depending on my mood and whims.
Whew, I feel a sense of accomplishment now that I am ready to post this....here goes!