Monday, January 25, 2010

Anne Frank

I read this book for three, no, actually 4, reasons:
  1. It's interesting.
  2. Masterpiece Classic is airing a new adaptation of this on Holocaust Day (April 11th).
  3. Miep Gies (a woman who helped Anne's family hide and was the one to recover and preserve Anne's diary) just died on January 10th.
  4. I own it and have never read it all the way through. Sad, huh?

Plus I had to leave something out to read. All the rest of my books are packed up in boxes and will be in boxes until we get into a house which will be soon hopefully but we don't really know. Wow, I really should have used some commas in that last sentence. :D

Loved Anne Frank. I think part of its charm is how simple and innocent it is, but now and again Anne will say something completely profound. It's just heartbreaking how it ends so suddenly. One day she's talking about life as usual, maybe something about her blossoming romance with Peter, and the next, there's nothing. Just a note at the end of the book saying that her family's hiding place had been raided and all the family arrested. She died far too soon after that in a concentration camp. It is so sad and moving.

Extra, Extra

Extras is a great book and fantastic sequel to the Uglies series. Although it's set in the same world, this book is not told from Tally's point of view. In a way, that's kind of sad, because I've become emotionally invested in Tally's character. On the other hand, Tally does make an appearance (which is actually pretty substantial) and there is some very nice closure to her story which you don't get at the end of Specials. The other interesting thing about this book is its social commentary on today's obsession with the internet. It definitely delves into serious thinking about the benefits and risks of being constantly connected to everyone else (like twitter, facebook, and blogging *ahem*). This book also takes place in Japan, and I thought it was interesting to imagine how a different culture could change in the future. Are we all headed towards some sort of sameness because we're constantly connected? Or will we be able to keep our individual cultures? Lots of interesting questions to explore, and on top of all of that, this book is just plain good. Great characters, lots of exciting and interesting plot twists, and lots of fun. Great read!

Saturday, January 2, 2010


Phew! I made it! But it was close. I had to cram in a few short books in the last couple of weeks. I think, though, that my goal for 2010 is going to be 50 books! It's going to be much more difficult to read for fun now that I'm taking online classes to finish my degree. Honestly, if I hadn't taken Children's Literature this last semester I doubt I would have made my goal. Reading 2-4 children's books definitely boosted my numbers. Too bad I can't take classes like that every semester!

Most books read in a month: 11 in February (kind of funny considering it's the shortest month).

Least books read in a month: 3 in May. Kind of figures since I moved from Omaha to Idaho Falls in May.

Worst book read this year: The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. That's the last time I check out a book from the library without reading a few reviews first. Just because it's popular and talked about doesn't mean anything. This book is almost pure filth. I really shouldn't have finished it. Consider yourself warned.

Best books read this year: I had to pick several, since it was impossible to pick just one. For children, I LOVE The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo. I can't recommend The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan enough either. It's the last book in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series and the whole series is a must read in my opinion. From the YA genre I loved Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George. It has everything I love in a book. I consider Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder and Mara, Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis McGraw to be fantastic finds as well. Another all-around favorite of mine was The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.

And, of course, if you haven't read The Hunger Games and Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins yet, you MUST! And SOON!

It's been a great book year and it's been fun to blog about my reading. I'm excited to discover even more great books this year. If you have any recommendations for me, please leave a comment!

Friday, January 1, 2010

101! 2009 Book Year in Review

December's Completed Reads
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson.
Our Town by Thornton Wilder.
Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Robert Bach.
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins.
Keturah and Lord Death by Martine Leavitt.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. Uglies, Pretties, and Specials by Scott Westerfeld.

November's Completed Reads
Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson.
The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks.
The Fairy Rebel by Lynne Reid Banks.
The Giver by Lois Lowry.
A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L'Engle.
The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo.
Dreamhunter by Elizabeth Knox.
Dreamquake by Elizabeth Knox.
Forest Born by Shannon Hale.

October's completed reads
Troubling a Star by Madeleine L'Engle.
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins.
Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freeman.
The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown.
The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom.
Sea Glass by Maria V. Snyder.
Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes.
Princess Ben by Catherine Gilbert Murdock.
Mara, Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis McGraw.
Harriet the Spy Louise Fitzhugh.

September's Completed Reads
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg.
Graceling by Kristin Cashore.
A Company of Swans by Eva Ibbotson.
Beauty by Robin McKinley.
A Girl Named Zippy: Growing Up Small in Mooreland, Indiana by Haven Kimmel.
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine.
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson.

August's Completed Reads
Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens.
Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George.
Storm Glass by Maria V. Snyder.
The 39 Clues Series #4: Beyond the Grave by Jude Watson.
Spindle's End by Robin McKinley.
The Actor and the Housewife by Shannon Hale.
The 39 Clues Series #5: The Black Circle by Patrick Carman.
Wings by Aprilynne Pike.
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.
Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George.

July's completed reads
Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry.
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger.
Dragon Spear by Jessica Day George.
The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson.
Chalice by Robin McKinley.
The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum.

June's complete reads
The Giver by Lois Lowry.
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens.
Cat Among the Pigeons by Agatha Christie.
Mrs. McGinty's Dead by Agatha Christie.
A Pocket Full of Rye by Agatha Christie.
Messenger by Lois Lowry.
Mythology by Edith Hamilton.

May's completed reads
Bleak House by Charles Dickens.
The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan.
Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke.

April's completed reads
Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer.
The Host by Stephenie Meyer.
Fablehaven: Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary by Brandon Mull.
The 39 Clues: The Sword Thief by Peter Lerangis.
The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare.
Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones.

March's Completed Reads
Peter and the Shadow Thieves by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson.
Peter and the Secret of Rundoon by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson.
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.
Percy Jackson: The Demigod Files by Rick Riordan.
Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader by Anne Fadiman.
The Girl Who Could Fly by Victoria Forester.
Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne Trusse.
Twilight, New Moon, and Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer.

February's Completed Reads
The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling.
The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo.
Envy by Anna Godberson.
Charlie Bone and the Shadow by Jenny Nimmo.
Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder.
Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder.
Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson.
The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan.
The Titan's Curse by Rick Riordan.
The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan.
Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder.

January's Completed Reads
Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy.
Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke.
Gone by Michael Grant.
The 39 Clues: One False Note by Gordon Korman.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain.
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain.