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Monday, December 12, 2011

Things I've Read Recently

I have a review written somewhere, I just need to find the notebook it's in, so for now, I'm just going to talk a little bit about some books that I've read recently but don't want to do full reviews of.

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Published: January 1st, 2002 by either Scholastic or HarperCollins, I'm not 100% sure because goodreads is confusing and it's late.
Genre: Middle grade fantasy
Binding: Paperback
Page count: Goodreads says 162 and I'm not getting up to check the copy I have.
Part of a series? No
Amazon link.

Summary (from goodreads): Coraline's often wondered what's behind the locked door in the drawing room. It reveals only a brick wall when she finally opens it, but when she tries again later, a passageway mysteriously appears. Coraline is surprised to find a flat decorated exactly like her own, but strangely different. And when she finds her "other" parents in this alternate world, they are much more interesting despite their creepy black button eyes. When they make it clear, however, that they want to make her theirs forever, Coraline begins a nightmarish game to rescue her real parents and three children imprisoned in a mirror. With only a bored-through stone and an aloof cat to help, Coraline confronts this harrowing task of escaping these monstrous creatures.

Thoughts: This isn't the first time I've read this (more like the third), but it's one of my absolute favourite books ever. Highly recommend. V and I were reading it, but we didn't finish. I think it might be a bit beyond her because she's only eight. Depends on the kid. She was liking it, though.

Coraline: Graphic Novel by Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russell

Published: July 1st, 2008 by HarperCollins
Genre: I guess middle grade fantasy too? I'm not sure how graphic novel genres work...
Binding: Paperback.
Page count: Goodreads says 186 pages.
Part of a series? Nope.
Amazon link.

You don't need the summary again, do you? ;) You're smart people, you know how to scroll. Here's a goodreads link for you, though.

Anyways, I saw this on my library website and it looked interesting so I figured I'd order it and see what it was like. I don't mean to repeat myself, but it was, again, very interesting. I don't know a lot about graphic novels, but it was cool seeing Coraline another medium. Part of me kept expecting to see the movie Coraline, though, blue hair and all (because blue hair and all and anyone who says otherwise is on the wrong blog). I probably wouldn't buy this one because it isn't really a favourite, but it was well worth a read.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Published: January 1st, 2009 by Dutton Juvenile
Genre: YA... um, I'm not sure what. Mostly contemporary but sort of a not? I don't know. It's hard to explain.
Binding: Paperback
Page Count: Goodreads says 208 and I'm not going to the other room to get my copy and check, so we're going with that.
Part of a series: Yes, it has a sequel.
Amazon link.

Summary (from goodreads): What if you had everything:

A gorgeous boyfriend who was madly in love with you?
Quirky hip parents who totally got you?
A musical talent that could take you anywhere?
What if your biggest problem in life was choosing which path to take?
Follow your first love--music-- to New York City?
Or stay with your boyfriend, friends, and family?

What if one day, you went out for a drive...

And in an instant everything changed?
What if suddenly all the other choices were gone?
Except for one - the only one that truly mattered?
What would you do?

Thoughts: I bought this at a Walmart in the city because I had heard good things about it and it was pretty. (See the edge along there? The front part of the cover lifts up and there's shattered glass underneath. Really cool.) Then because I suck and my to-read pile wants to murder me in my sleep, I did the same thing I do to most of the books I buy. I put it on a shelf and forgot about it.

THEN I won a contest and got a (signed) copy of If I Stay and certain people threatened to disown me if I didn't read it. I still didn't read it for a while because I suck like that. Then I FINALLY started to read it and I loved it. I kept tearing up in public and it was just... great. Read it. Now.

Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Published: April 5th, 2011 by Dutton Juvenile
Genre: YA Contemporary
Binding: Hardcover
Page Count: 260 according to goodreads.
Part of a series? No duh.
Amazon link.

I am not going to post the summary to this one because it has MAJOR spoilers if you haven't read the first one. So click the goodreads link at your own risk. I am WARNING YOU and I am not responsible if you spoil yourself.

I won't say much about this one for the risk of spoiling, but I will say that I loved it. It made me cry as much as If I Stay and the choice of a twenty-one year old narrator isn't something you see often. (And I won't say who narrates it. NO ONE ELSE DO EITHER.)

Then recently I got sick and I wanted something comforting, so I decided to reread a book I had already read. I guess that's comforting for the same reasons watching movies I've seen 20 times is. Or my brain is just weird. (Quit snickering.) Anyways, this is what I read.

Birthright by Nora Roberts

Published: March 30th, 2004 by Jove (By Jove, I think she's got it!)
Genre: Adult romantic suspense.
Binding: Paperback (Mass market paperback, if you're wondering.) (Those are the shorter ones.)
Page Count: Goodreads says 502
Part of a series? No.
Amazon link.

Summary (from goodreads): On a hot July afternoon, a worker at an Antietam Creek construction site drives the blade of his backhoe into a layer of soil — and strikes a 5,000-year-old human skull. The discovery draws plenty of attention and a lot of controversy. It also changes the life of one woman in ways she never expected.

(I'm only putting part of the summary because this post is getting long.)

Thoughts: I had this book on my mind for a while because I recommended it to a friend. I was telling her about this scene where Callie, the main character, is in a motel room and her ex-husband is in the room next to hers. She wants to talk to him, but she's too stubborn to call him or go next door, so she starts playing the Jaws theme on her cello. He bursts into her room, grabs the bow and goes, "You know I hate that."

That stuck with me and still made me giggle after years since reading this, so I figured it was time for a reread and it was just as good as I remembered. Can I just be Nora Roberts? Only with Twitter because I read in an interview that she doesn't tweet and I don't know if I can live like that.

(Oh, also, this IS an adult romance novel, so there's smexytimes and stuff. If you're not comfortable with that, it's okay. There's mystery and archaelogy stuff which is fascinating and family drama, too, so if you skim those parts, you won't feel left out. The romance is a big part of the novel, though. It IS a romance novel and if you don't like romance, you'll probably want to skip this one no matter how much I tell you I loved it.) (If you don't like romance of any kind, what ARE you doing here??? Like 90% of the novels I read have some kind of romance.) (Picture books generally don't.) (Although there is Smitten where a sock and a mitten fall in love and lots of princes and princesses fall in love.) (But even if you don't like romance of any kind, I don't want you to stop reading my blog, okay? Because you guys are awesome.)

(But if you don't think blue hair is awesome AND you don't like romance... I don't know what you're finding here for you, but I hope you're enjoying it.)

Anyways. One of my favourites. Highly recommend it.

Let's move on, shall we? Next up we have:

Are You Afraid? by Carla Cassidy

Published: March 7th, 2006 by Signet
Genre: Adult romantic suspense
Binding: Paperback
Page count: 352
Part of a series? Nope.
Amazon link.

Summary (from goodreads): At the age of sixteen, Jessica Langford endured and escaped the grip of a serial killer who buried his victims alive. After overcoming this terrifying experience, she started her own radio program to help those living in fear. If she could survive her past, why not help others do the same?

But now her past is being resurrected. An anonymouse man calls in to her how with remarkable knowledge of her traumatic experience - and her worst fears. With help from Detective Jake Merridan - a gorgeous cop on the brink of burnout himself - Jessie must try to uncover the intentions of this mysterious caller, to find him before he kills again and makes her life worse than anything she's ever feared.

Thoughts: I liked this one a lot. The romance was sweet and the serial killer part was scary like it's supposed to be. All good. (Also an adult romance, so again, sexytimes, yada yada, you know the rest.) (When I say adult, I mean grown-up. Not adult like adult movies because we all know what that euphanism means and that's a bit icky.) Recommend.

One last book that I want to talk about:

Making Waves by Tawna Fenske

Published: August 1st, 2011 by Sourcebooks
Genre: Adult romantic comedy
Binding: Paperback
Page count: 352 and you know the goodreads deal by now.
Part of a series? Nope, standalone.
Amazon link.

Summary (from goodreads): She always wanted to belong... just not to a disfunctional pirate crew.

Juli has trouble fitting in, though she'd prefer to keep the reasons to herself. But when she mistakenly stows away on a ship of misfit corporate castoffs, her own secrets become the least of her concerns.

He knows plotting a diamond heist may be considered unusual behavior...

But Alex isn't feeling very normal when his unscrupulous boss kicks him to the curb. Meeting Juli doesn't do much to restore normalcy to Alex's life, but it sure is exhilerating!

As Alex and Juli bare their secrets - and a whole lot more - they find that while normal is nice, weird can be wonderful.

Thoughts: I started reading this at 5am on a Wednesday beause I didn't have to shower and was almost late for work because I forgot to watch the clock. (Yes, I go to work at 6am. Yes, it's as fun as it sounds.) I didn't finish it that day, so the next day, when I had Storytime at 10am, I read more after my shower at 8 and was again almost late for work.

That's how good it was. It was funny and sweet and quirky and I didn't want to put it back. I'm a bit sad I have to give it back to the library. *sniffle* YOU KNOW. Tomorrow is my birthday. (Please picture this as you read that.) Anyways, this is a definite recommend.

Alright, so there you have a few things I've read that I haven't talked about on here before. What have you guys been reading? Have you read any of these? Going to now? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Peace and cookies,


  1. I love the variety of books you have read recently from Neil Gaiman to Gayle Foreman to Nora Roberts, it is awesome.

    Also Coraline is da bomb, so it's pretty cool that you've read it three times!

  2. I think reading a variety is more interesting. Nice thoughts on what appear to be nice books - though I totally didn't get into Nora's book - and I'm a huge fan of hers.

  3. *hasn't read any of these* But most of them are on my list to read XD Especially If I Stay/Where She Went because you told me how good those were *nods*

    And Coraline.

  4. I agree, it's so awesome that you read a variety of books. It is very important to do that, to get a taste of everything :) And YEAHHHH Coraline is one of my favorites too. And that graphic novel looks interesting....haha, not really sure whether I want to start that one or not.

  5. April: Haha, thanks XD Coraline is one of my favourites :)

    Jennifer: Really???? That sucks!!

    KT: I know :P

    Deb: Aww, thanks. It's a quick read (the graphic novel). I don't think it's amazing, but it was good.


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