Melephant

Thoughts on books and knitting

 

I Feel Bad… About My Neck

ifeelbad41CQ6P5KTGLI audio booked this one mostly on my way to and from work. I enjoyed it. It is not a heavy read like my previous audio book, so it was pretty easy to start and stop without missing too much.

Nora writes about everything from living in NYC and falling in love with your apartment to where to find the best Hungarian cabbage strudel. I enjoyed the stories that she had to tell, and because it was n audio book, I felt like we were friends chatting about everyday things.

I had not known about Nora prior to picking up this audio book, so it was nice to learn a bit about her life and her thoughts on hr life. Apparently she has other books, which I may just check out at the library.

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By Melephant
On November 23, 2009
At 11:53 am
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Love, Stargirl.

cover--stargirl

I figured since I am going to be finishing Jerry Spinelli’s sequel to Stargirl, I should probably first write a review on the prequel to this amazing book.

I absolutely loved this book! I read it in one night at my local Barnes and Noble when I lived in South Jersey. I just found that once I started it, I couldn’t put it down. Stargirl became my hero for one cold, winter night sitting in that book store. I wish that they had a book like that when I was younger…

This book really changed the way I felt about being different, and how society really doesn’t understand when someone is not what we define as normal. Stargirl embraces life and shows us all that we can be happy being who we really are, even if not everyone agrees with it.

lovestargirlIn the sequel to this amazing book, Stargirl moves to a new state and encounters a whole new world of characters. She loses her “one true love” Leo when she moves, and the entire book is her writing letters to him about her new life in this strange new land. She befriends some new wonderfully bizarre neighbors and teaches us that there is soo much more to life than meets the eye.

I hope to one day share these books with my children and share the importance of being yourself at all times and not conforming to the social norm just because.

If I only knew this when I was growing up…

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By Melephant
On
At 9:38 am
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How to Meet Cute Boys- Step One: Don’t Read This Book

howtomeet9780446530729-l

So I finished this book last week on my train ride into the city, but I have been uber busy all weekend with social stuff (Saturday was out annual Urban Family Thanksgiving at my friends’ house down the shore and Sunday was a Baby Shower down in South Jersey. I know what your thinking- lots of car/train time, you must have read a ton, but no- I was working on knitting a baby blanket the whole time). So I figured I would write a quick review today (I am off today, so I am hoping to get some more reading in before I work 4 days in a row. Yeah, I am working Thanksgiving).

So enough about life- onto the review of my latest Challenge read!

This book read more like a Cosmo magazine. I have to say, I have never been a fan of those cheesy mags. I was never one of those girls that filled out any of those quiz’s on what kind of friend/fruity drink/high heel shoe you are. I always seemed to have better things to do with my time (like reading books). So I guess it comes as no surprise that this book was not really my cup of tea (peppermint is my fave, if your wondering…).

I finished it and thought it was kinda cute in the end, even though I kept finding myself wanting to skip the quizzes in the middle of the chapters. It was a quick read, and mildly entertaining to get a feel of how other people live life. But I would not wish to read this one again.

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By Melephant
On
At 9:07 am
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I’m soooo Happy For You!

imsohappyn309716I enjoyed this book on so many different levels.

The main character never ceased to entertain me with her self centered thoughts. I felt like I was reading a social experiment on female friendship. She projected her own insecurities onto her best friend, who had enough problems of her own. By the end of the book, I started to feel sorry for all of the characters.

This book is my latest challenge read. I have to say, I started out with thinking I will say that I am so grateful for my best friends, but after reading this book, I am glad that I don’t have friends like these!

What an interesting story this was, especially when it all came together in the last chapter (I LOVE when that happens!). I just wish that the last chapter didn’t have to wait until 1am… Reading is seriously impending on my sleep these days.

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By Melephant
On
At 8:46 am
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Shhhh… I Have a Christmas Secret

christmas9780312558369I just finished this book, and I still have the warm, fuzzy feeling that it left me with.

This book is somewhat part of a series. However, you do not need to start from the beginning to understand what is going on, nor do you have to read all of the books. This is the same series that The Christmas Shoes is in (the book that was either based on or the basis for that really cute, sappy Christmas song that makes me cry every year). This is the newest installment, but there seems to be a new one out every year. If this seems like something that you would enjoy, check them all out!

I always enjoy books by Donna VanLiere. I especially enjoyed the twist at the end! I totally didn’t see it coming…

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By Melephant
On November 15, 2009
At 5:40 pm
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Happy Birthday… or Whatever

hpbdaywhatever

I had a day off yesterday, and boy did I enjoy it! I got to finish another book for my Challenge! This one redeemed my last bad read. Yay! I am reading away, and enjoying every minute of it!

I really loved this book! The author finds humor in everyday life (although, I have to say, her everyday life is quite extra-ordinary) and I felt like I was by her side living through some of the hilarious situations as she wrote them. Anne goes back from childhood and traces her steps growing up in a Korean family. From her hilarious parents who speak a hilarious broken English to her elderly grandmother who forces her to eat fish even though she is a vegetarian, Choi makes you want to be in her family, if only for a day.

While Choi wrote the book to be a comedy, there are times that made me really feel for her family, and want to be there for them. But then in the next page, I am laughing so hard I am trying not to pee myself! Definitely a must read for anyone who enjoys a laugh out loud book!

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By Melephant
On November 12, 2009
At 8:55 am
Comments : 0
 
 

17 Weddings… In 1 Season???

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I have to admit- I really did not enjoy this book… at all. I picked it up from the library for the Challenge, but wish that I had put it down as soon as I picked it up.

I am not very hard to please, as far as book readers go. I ask for a plot, preferably a good one, a goal, and something to keep me interested. And I ask for well established, believable characters. That is not a lot to ask for, if I do say so myself.

However, this book contains none of that. The main character was shallow, I could not relate at all. Her boyfriend was not well thought out or well developed. The plot seemed to have many holes, one being that all of the main characters friends were getting married in the same season. Now I don’t know about you, but this seems like a far fetched concept.

Then there was the fact that she chose to not get married. OK, fine, but every chapter did not have to mention her choice to not get married. I really wish that I never finished this book, but unfortunately, I am not good at putting books down once I start them.

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By Melephant
On November 11, 2009
At 4:32 pm
Comments : 0
 
 

After You

julie_buxbaumIn this new story by Buxbaum, we meet a little girl who has been touched by tragedy close to home- her mother is brutally attacked and killed by a stranger right in front of her eyes. The main character in this tragic story steps up and moves to the UK to help care for her late best friends daughter and subsequently learns some surprising secrets that her friend has kept from her. In the meantime, we learn more about a tragedy in her own life that she was running away from and ultimately learns how to recover from.

Buxbaum ties the story of The Secret Garden into the book. As they read the story together, they become closer and begin to learn more about how far the human soul can reach and how healing sometimes takes more than just time.

I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good story.

The first story that I ever read by this Author was The Opposite of Love. After reading The Opposite of Love, I fell in love with the author’s writing style, as well as the beautiful stories that she has to tell. I can’t wait for her next book to come out!

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By Melephant
On
At 1:29 pm
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Love… and Other Natural Disasters

Love_and_Other_Cover_265xI have to say, this book really surprised me. I was expecting chick lit, but what I got was soo much more. The opening chapter of this book finds the main character hosting Thanksgiving with her family. We quickly find out that she is happily married with a child on the way. Then the Author throws us a curve ball- her husband seems to be having an affair with a coworker!

OK, so this still has some chick lit qualities to it, I can clearly see that. But it goes so much deeper. Shumas makes us ponder the question- when is an affair an affair and not a friendship? Does romantic love make a relationship different from a very close friendship? And where do we cross the line from friendship to affair?

I found myself asking myself these questions, as well as my husband, and found that we had different views on this topic. While we both agree that romantic love with another person is cheating on one another, we both felt different about when you cross the line from friendship to affair. I believe that 2 people of the opposite sex can have a friendship, but once you start relying on that person as much as or more than your spouse, you are in dangerous affair territory, while he believes that you can have a close friendship without it being a affair.

This story questions what is right and what is wrong, and it really made me think about how close is too close…

If you enjoyed this book, and you enjoy chick lit, also check out her other book Five Things I Can’t Live Without.

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By Melephant
On
At 12:51 pm
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Bitter, Yet Sweet

bittern297402This is the second book that I had the pleasure of reading which focused on the Japanese Relocation during WWII. This is the life long love story about a Chinese boy and a Japanese girl during this difficult time in American history.

It was a thoroughly enjoyable journey through past and present. The Author begins in present day Seattle and takes us on a journey many years ago to the main charector Henry’s childhood, where he meets Keiko while he attends a mostly white school in his town instead of the traditional Chinese school in which many of his peers study. The story has many different facets, from the “I am American” button that his parents make him wear so that he may be differentiated from “the enemy”, to the love story between Keiko and himself and the story of growing up in such a difficult time in America.

I audiobooked this one on my way to work, and I have to say, I found myself spending a lot more time in my car then was necessary just so I can hear one more minute of this beautiful story.

This is the Fourth book I finished on my way to completing my Challenge. I hope to read many more like this one!

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By Melephant
On
At 11:06 am
Comments : 0