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Jolerie's Book Hoarding 2

This is a continuation of the topic Jolerie's Book Hoarding 1.

This topic was continued by Jolerie's Book Hoarding 2.

75 Books Challenge for 2012

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Edited: Aug 12, 2012, 3:29am Top

I'm super excited to be back for the second year and hopefully this time will also be able to achieve that magical number of 75!! I love reading books in pretty much all genres. If it has a good story, good characters, you will find my nose in it. I have a 16 month old 2 year old toddler as well, so reading times are precious and is guarded with a passion.
Looking forward to catching up with old friends and meeting new ones! :)

Thread 1 - Books: 1-46 (no reviews), Books 47 - 50 (with reviews)

Currently Reading:

The Lying Game by Sara Shepard

4 Stars: As satisfying as scratching that itch that is just right out of my reach...
3 Stars: Purr...I'm content...
2 Stars: Anxiously eyeing the next book in my pile...
1 Star: Fire fodder...BURN BABY BURN!!

August's Selection

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
The House at Riverton by Kate Morton
Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh
East of Eden by John Steinbeck
The Island of Doctor Moreau by H. G. Wells
Alice's Adventure in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll
The Lying Game by Sara Shepard
Siren by Tricia Rayburn
Behemoth by Scott Westerfield
Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool
Heart of a Samurai by Margi Preus
Leviathan by Scott Westerfield
Lament by Maggie Stiefvater
Toby Alone by Timothee De Fombelle
Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce

Edited: Jul 15, 2012, 12:39am Top

Last years ALL STAR BOARD for BEST READS of 2011!







Some notables not to be forgotten:
The Birth of Venus
The Lovely Bones
The Wind in the Willows
Water for Elephants
Lullabies for Little Criminals
The Arrival
Anne of Green Gables Collection

Edited: Jul 15, 2012, 5:53pm Top

Books Read in 2012:
**Books are OTS unless otherwise indicated
(L) for Public Library Loans
(ER) books received from LT Early Reviewer
1. The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai 3.5*
2. (L) Anahita's Woven Riddle by Meghan Nuttall Sayres 3.75*
3. (L) A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray 4*
Favourite Read:

4. The Rose Labyrinth by Titania Hardie 3.5*
5. (L) Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver 4*
6. (ER) Every Body Matters by Gary Thomas 4*
7. The Rosetta Codex by Richard Paul Russo 3.75*
8. (L) Princess of Glass by Jessica Day George 3.5*
9. Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie 4*
10. Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens by J. M. Barrie 3.5*
11. (L) The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie 5*
12. The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards 5*
13. (L) Across the Universe by Beth Revis 4*
Favourite Reads:

14. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson 3.75*
15. (L) I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore 3.5*
16. (L) Jane by April Linder 2.5*
Favourite Read:

Edited: Jul 15, 2012, 12:44am Top

17. A Book about Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived by Rob Bell 3.75*
18. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte 3.75*
19. (L) Chalice by Robin McKinley 4*
20. (ER) The Last Song by Eva Wiseman 3.75*
21. The Scions of Shannara by Terry Brooks 4.5*
22. (L) Factotum by D.M. Cornish 3.75*
23. Transforming Discipleship by Greg Ogden 5*
24. The Princess and the Goblin by George Macdonald 3.5*
25. (L) Eve by Anna Carey 4.5*
26. The Princess and Curdie by George Macdonald 3*
27. (L) Emma Vol. 2 by Kaoru Mori 3.5*
28. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison 4*
29. The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter 4*
30. (L) Un Lun Dun by China Mieville 4*
31. Shanghai Girls by Lisa See 5*
Favourite Read:

32. (L) The Children of the Lost by David Whitley 4*
33. Amaryllis in Blueberry by Christina Meldrum 4.75*
34. (L) The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray by Chris Wooding 3.5*
35. The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman 4*
36. (L) Rebel Angels by Libba Bray 3*
Favourite Reads:

37. The White Mare by Jules Watson 3.75*
38. Shadow of the Hegemon by Orson Scott Card 3*
39. (L) I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith 2.5*
40. A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry 4*
41. (L) When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead 3.75*
42. (ER) The Serpent's Bite by Warren Adler 2.5*
43. (L) Stealing Athena by Karen Essex 4*
44. (L) The Selection by Kiera Cass 3*
45. Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger 3.75*
46. (L) Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini 4*
Favourite Read:

Edited: Aug 12, 2012, 3:29am Top

47. Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife by Linda Berdoll 3.75*
48. (L) Eona by Alison Goodman 4*
49. The Giver by Lois Lowry 5*
50. (L) Chime by Franny Billingsley 2.75*
51. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini 4.75*
52. (L) Once was Lost by Sara Zarr 3.75*
53. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins 4*
54. (L) Wither by Lauren DeStefano 3.5*
55. The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff 4.5*
56. (ER) Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff 3.75*
57 (L) Haven by Kristi Cook 3*
Favourite Reads:

58. (L) Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool 4*
59. East of Eden by John Steinbeck 3.25*

Jul 15, 2012, 12:38am Top

You are off at the starting gate and running. What a comeback you have made :)
See you round on the threads!

Jul 15, 2012, 1:12am Top

Valerie - glad to see you back and posting frenetically. Congrats on your new thread and I trust your weekend is going swimmingly.

Jul 15, 2012, 2:45am Top

Hi Valerie!
welcome back :)
from your last thread- The Giver was a 2011 favorite read for me :) I don't think I will carry on with the others in the series. I liked The Giver so much I don't want it spoiled :)
Good luck on that list of yours for July!
I will be watching :)

Jul 15, 2012, 5:02am Top

Checking in before I get way behind again, Valerie!

Jul 15, 2012, 8:28am Top

Valerie- Love the new thread! And love having you back in the fold again. Your sunny disposition & passion for books is always a highlight for me.
Hey, congrats on the guilt-free book haul. Yah!

Jul 15, 2012, 8:56am Top

Happy Sunday and love the picture topping your thread, Valerie.

Jul 15, 2012, 3:51pm Top

Nice new thread, Valerie! Love the photo up top.

Jul 15, 2012, 5:52pm Top

Megan: Star for you being first! :) No comeback, but rather I'm really enjoying everyone's company!

Paul: Thanks Paul. Weekend has been tiring but productive. Sad that it is already Sunday, which means, Hubby is back to work tm, which means I go back to work as well.

Kara: I haven't heard one negative feedback from The Giver yet so that cements it's place in my top reads for 2012 as well. I will probably read some of Lowry's other books, but with the knowledge that I'm not expecting it to be like The Giver, so hopefully I can enjoy the books for their own merits.

Stasia: It's always so nice to see on the threads since I know what a busy gal you are!

Mark: You are always such a welcoming presence. Whether someone has just started or is trying to catch up, you are always a friendly voice (word) to come back to!

Caro: Thanks! I am trying to soak up as much of summer as I can before the inevitable Calgary winters hit us later in the year...brrr! I hope you are having a great Sunday as well with birthday celebrations and all!

Mamie: Thank you for swinging by! Your thread is moving at a lightning speed! But always such enjoyable book talks and more that it's hard to keep away from for very long! :)

Jul 16, 2012, 7:41am Top

Just reserving my seat, as it were. Lovely photo at the top!
And I can sympathize with the difficulty of finding reading time - wish I could say that it's easier with a 3-year-old, but...

Edited: Jul 16, 2012, 11:56pm Top

#51 The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Source: OTS
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 391
Rating: 4.75*
Recommend: Those who loved A Thousand Splendid Suns will not be disappointed by this one.

Books Noted: Shahnamah, Ivanhoe, Wuthering Heights

"Now, no matter what the mullah teaches, there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft. Do you understand that?"
"When you kill a man, you steal a life," Baba said. "You steal his wife's right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you lie, you steal someone's right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. Do you see?"

Brotherhood that is forged from the moment you are born is a strong bond. Amir and Hassan are friends, comrades, brothers, from the moment they laid eyes on one another. Their childhood is filled with memories of afternoons basking in each other's presence, playing games, reading stories, flying kites, or simply just being with one another. One winter afternoon, one violent act of betrayal, one moment of selfishness, creates a rift between the two boys that will haunt them for the rest of their lives.

Hosseini has a unique talent for storytelling. He has the ability to write about a world that is so close to his heart, so foreign to the rest of the world, and yet is able to strike a chord within all of us about the universality of the human heart and the perseverance that moves us to live life. There is so much brutality and violence in the world that he creates for us and yet at the end of it all, there is the hope of redemption. I know that I will walk away from his books always with a perspective change and a grateful heart. Highly recommended for anyone who wants to read a story about people who have flaws, people who will make mistakes, but real, relatable people nonetheless.

Jul 16, 2012, 5:27pm Top

You would definitely understand Amber! I am just hoping he keeps his afternoon naps for as long as possible. Those 2 hours of reprieve for me is a blessing and when I can get the bulk of my uninterrupted reading done. :)

Edited: Jul 16, 2012, 5:47pm Top

Very nice review of The Kite Runner - I read that one several years ago and it stays with you for a very long time after you put it down - there are parts of it that I still think about. That quote that you chose is also one of the ones I make from the book. That story is just so beautifully rendered.

*edited to add that I gave you a thumb.

Jul 16, 2012, 6:22pm Top

Yes, good review! The Kite Runner is such a good book!

Jul 16, 2012, 6:53pm Top

Thanks Mamie! There were so many images, both good and bad, that stuck out in my head. So many great emotional scenes that definitely made me want to whip out the kleenex. It's so great to read a book about a place that I've never been to, completely foreign to my notion of familiarity, and yet still feel like I can be completely immersed in the surroundings. Thanks for the thumb!

Hi Rachel! I couldn't agree more. A very good book. Some parts were disturbing and a little too violent for me, hence I couldn't give it a full 5 stars, but everything else was just perfect.

Jul 16, 2012, 7:53pm Top

Valerie- Excellent review of the Kite Runner. Good job. If you post the review, I'll give you a Big Thumb! His follow-up A Thousand Splendid Suns is also terrific.

Jul 17, 2012, 12:50am Top

Thanks for the advance thumb Mark. I did actually post the review on the main page but the link I used was for another version of the book. I corrected the link so all should be well now. :)

Jul 17, 2012, 12:53am Top

Great review! I also really liked The Kite Runner, both times I read it. Both times for a book club. Excellent book club book.

Jul 17, 2012, 1:02am Top

Nice new thread, and a great review to start it!

Jul 17, 2012, 6:45am Top

You gotta Thumb! Enjoy your day!

Jul 17, 2012, 7:03am Top

>19 jolerie: Yes, I found parts of it disturbing, too, but I thought that it was tactfully done and necessary for the story so I gritted my teeth and moved on. :)

Jul 17, 2012, 7:38am Top

Charlie stopped actually napping a long time ago, so we just converted nap time to Quiet Time, in which he stays in his room for and hour and a half playing quietly. I was skeptical that he'd go for it at first, but he did and he actually likes having his quiet time every day. And so do I.

Edited: Jul 17, 2012, 9:33am Top

Good review of The Kite Runner, Valerie. I echo the comments about parts that were disturbing, but tactful and necessary.

Jul 17, 2012, 10:03am Top

Great review, Valerie! I also really liked The Kite Runner when I read it several years ago. I have his second novel on my shelves but haven't gotten to it yet...

Jul 17, 2012, 12:07pm Top

Thanks Jenn! I can imagine that it would be a great bookclub read. I kept wanting to talk to someone about it after I read it. There are so many themes in the book that can be explored and discussed and it's just one of those books that needs to be "talked" about after you read it.

Thanks Terri for swinging by my thread and even better, you commented! :D

Mark, you are a doll. *Hugs*

I agree with you completely Rachel. I don't think the story could be as authentic if it didn't include the violence. It wasn't gratuitously done so like you I was able to bear through it, although the images will last for a long time yet.

Amber, each time he has dropped a nap, I have dreaded and dreaded about what I was going to do with the extra time. From 3 to 2 and now to 1, I keep thinking how am I going to fill all those hours. But as he has dropped each of the naps, he has also gotten more interactive so those hours just fly by now with outings or playdate or simply just doing worksheets at home. :) He is a high sleep need kid so I don't forsee him dropping his afternoon naps anytime soon, fingers and toes crossed! :)

You are absolutely right Joe. It is just hard after reading something like that not to have those images mill around in my head. My next really should have been a lighter one to put everything in balance, but I didn't really think this one through...haha!

Thanks Katie! You absolutely have to read Ten Thousand Splendid Suns. I actually read that one first and I think I actually liked it a tad more and gave it a full 5 star rating. It's similar in the sense that the story is heartbreaking, but the people are so worth cheering for and this time, they are women. :)

Jul 18, 2012, 12:06am Top

Nice new thread :)

Great Review on the Kite Runner. I loved that book as well. Although it took me ages to warm up to Amir. Sometimes I just wanted to shake and smack him for his blindness and arrogance. **Grrr**

I see that you read and loved the The Dovekeepers - I am half way and I love it as well so far.

Edited: Jul 18, 2012, 12:33am Top

Thank you! Yeah, I thought I would be more annoyed with him as well, but when I thought about what made him tick, his selfishness is understandable, but not necessarily acceptable. I think his actions at the end redeemed him enough for me to be okay with all his issues at the beginning of the book. I love Hassan though....For you a thousand times over... is one of the most touching lines I've ever read.
I hope you enjoy the Dovekeepers! It definitely isn't a cheery book, but the stories of the individual women are all very captivating!

Edited: Jul 18, 2012, 1:34am Top

#52 Once was Lost by Sara Zarr
Source: Public Library
Genre: YA
Pages: 217
Rating: 3.75*
Recommend: If you are in the market for a YA book that deals with very real issues from the perspective of a teenage girl that thankfully doesn't grate on your nerves after the first 10 pages.

Books noted: None

Do I believe? I believe just enough that Jody is alive that I think we should keep looking. I believe just enough in my mom to try to make a garden for her to work on when she gets home. I believe just enough in my dad that he'll have an explanation, even if that explanation is that he's only human. I believe just enough in myself to know that even if I start in a new school I'll be okay. I believe just enough in forgiveness that eventually we'll be a family again.

When personal tragedy collides with a local tragedy, Sam has to come to terms with her mother's recent DUI as well as the abduction of a girl she knows from youth group. The community rallies around trying to find Jody alive, but hope is fading as a week passes with no break through. With everyone focused on the abduction, Sam is left to deal with her own sense of loss and the one person she turns to for comfort is absent from her life. Doubts about faith, family, and forgiveness creates an internal turmoil within Sam that causes her to question everything she has ever known.

The back and forth nature of the book between Sam's private hell and the public anguish over the missing girl makes for an interesting juxtaposition of narratives. One storyline compliments the other and without one, I think the overall story would have been rather one toned and bland. Both crises are life altering and horrific for any teen and Zarr captures that struggle completely with Sam's voice. This was definitely a worthwhile read for anyone interested in seeing a teenager process some very adult challenges.

Edited: Jul 18, 2012, 12:28pm Top

If I haven't said it before, I LOVE my local public library!
I was trying to renew some books online a couple of nights ago and usually that is a simple process but this time I kept getting an error message saying "privilege denied". I thought maybe there were holds on some of the books, but usually it would actually say "holds on items". Anyways I was confused, but the next morning instead of having to call them and wait, I could use a feature they have on their site where you can instantly "chat" with a librarian. I typed my question and within 5 secs, I had my response. Very cool! My problem--expired card....whoops!

On the reading front, I am FINALLY getting around to reading Mockingjay. Super excited because I've seen such varying reactions to this last book in the trilogy. I am curious to see which side of the spectrum I will fall into. :)

Jul 18, 2012, 1:10pm Top

Whoa, live chatting with a librarian - that's awesome!

Jul 18, 2012, 2:52pm Top

>32 jolerie: Glad you liked it, Valerie. I'm a huge fan of Sara Zarr so I'm happy whenever someone else likes her stuff.

>33 jolerie: Yay for library love! Edmonton Public has that feature on our website too. We've also just started a feature where you can renew your library card yourself online. Does Calgary do that?

Edited: Jul 18, 2012, 3:02pm Top

Hi Amber! Yeah, technology when it works for you is absolutely awesome. I love all these new ways that the library is staying current with the time! I remember when I was younger, you weren't weren't allowed to bring drinks/food into the library but now they encourage you to bring your drinks in, grab a seat and settle down to enjoy the books. Very, very cool!

We do have that feature Micky and it beats using the the telephone system anytime, especially if you have multiple books with different due dates. I tried using the phone the night the online system locked me out and I groaned and remembered why I didn't like using the automated system - so inefficient! Oh wait....I just realized you said Library Card and not books. Haha! Nope, we DON'T have that feature yet, but it sounds totally cool! I had to go into my branch and do it the old fashion way. :)
It was my first Zarr book and I quite enjoyed it so I will definitely keep an eye out for her other books. Any one that you would personally recommend?

Returned from the library with even more books. When I will find the time to actually read them is going to be tricky. I've come to only borrow YA books from the library instead of purchasing them and boy has that saved me a tonne of money. But then I guess I end up spending that money on other books so in the end, no money is actually saved!

My recent haul:
Abandon by Meg Cabot
The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kady Cross
Genesis by Bernard Beckett
Switched by Amanda Hocking

Jul 18, 2012, 6:39pm Top

HI Valerie! Nice new thread here :)

Jul 18, 2012, 7:09pm Top

Valerie- I love to hear the Library Love! I'm crazy about mine too! Don't know what I would do with without it.
I liked Mockingjay but for me it was the weakest in the trilogy and also the darkest. Others loved it, so you might fall into that camp. Enjoy!

Jul 18, 2012, 7:41pm Top

Thanks Chelle!

Hey Mr. Mark! Library love is a common thing around here. I don't know what I would do without either or how I managed to avoid it all these years. Now I can focus on just buying books I really want instead of all the YA books that I think reading once is enough. Mockingjay is shaping up to be a pretty good read, but nothing mind blowing...yet. :)

Jul 18, 2012, 7:46pm Top

I wish I had library love. :( Mine is nothing to brag about, sadly. I end up buying nearly all of my paper and e- books, which I don't mind, but I'd like to have an audiobook lending source. Audiobooks cost a fortune!

Edited: Jul 18, 2012, 9:00pm Top

Yeah, I think we are pretty spoiled here in Calgary. I think the CPL is rated pretty high in terms of how many people actually use the system. Everything definitely has been updated or has the intentions of being more user friendly so I don't have any complaints, even thought it is a 12 dollar renewal fee every year. When you break it down it's so worth it considering how often I use it. I have a library shelf at home for all my checked out materials and that is completely full at the moment.....
Sorry to hear your library isn't as useful! Just gotta make use of all the sales and used books sources. I keep seeing on another thread about sales on Audible.com that seem pretty good?

Jul 18, 2012, 8:52pm Top

I've looked into Audible, Audiobooks, and a couple others whose names escape me at the moment. They tend to have exorbitant subscription fees, restrictions on monthly allowances (credits, points, etc), or simply don't work on my phone, which is how I need to listen to them.

I wouldn't mind an audiobook source with physical CDs, a la Netflix, but I haven't found one yet.

Jul 18, 2012, 8:54pm Top

I do shop the used bookstores, and sometimes luck into audiobook CDs at very low prices. Selection is pretty slim, though, so even in a pile of them to choose from, I may find only one or two. But hope springs eternal! So I look every time I go. :)

Jul 18, 2012, 8:58pm Top

Oh...I see. I didn't realize that they had subscription fees and such. That kind of takes the convenience out it unless you are able to maximize on their selection, which might make it kind of worth it. I know there are some sites that offer free d/l's but those mostly pertain only to the classics and not all the newer stuff that everyone's currently reading.
Although, having to buy books, expensive as it is, is something I don't mind since I have a hoarding issue with owning the books I read! :)

Jul 18, 2012, 9:15pm Top

The best deal I found was on Audiobooks.com, who were offering $7.95/mo for unlimited use. As many books as you wanted to borrow, but one at a time. But, it didn't work on my phone. Now that deal is over anyway, and it's back to $24.95/mo which I think is very steep. I may get to one book per month, and at that price I could buy them.

Audible.com is $14.95/mo, but you can only choose one book per month. Still very steep.

I've just done another search and come up with two options for rentals. Still pricey! Since I'm only an occasional listener, it doesn't make sense for me to spend so much monthly.

Jul 18, 2012, 9:26pm Top

Stopping by and waving hi.

Jul 19, 2012, 11:51am Top

Unrulysun - I was actually searching online while reading your messages to see if there is anything out there but I came across the same sites as the ones you mentioned. I guess since Audiobooks isn't as big as ebooks or paper copies, the deals for them just aren't as good. In cases like that, the library does offer an nice and convenient alternative. Hopefully your library will catch up with the technological wave sooner than later!

Linda - So cute! Thank you for dropping by and spreading your joy and sunshine where ever you go!

Jul 19, 2012, 12:52pm Top

I'm enjoying the library here in NS as well and I find I'm using the library a lot more now. I'm loving the online portion for using audio and ebooks right from home.

Jul 19, 2012, 2:58pm Top

>36 jolerie: I adored Story of a Girl and I'm also very fond of Sweethearts. Also, I hope you like Abandon. :)

CPL is pretty shiny. So is EPL (said the employee with absolutely no bias at all ;).

Jul 19, 2012, 8:06pm Top

I'm glad you are putting your library to good use Chelle! I am still too traditional to venture into the realms of ebooks and audiobooks. I still can't get over my need to physically hold a book and I don't seem to have the attention span to enjoy an audiobook so I'm just milking my library for their good ol' fashion paper books. :) I totally think libraries that carry ebooks and audiobooks are totally on trend and are trying hard to keep up with the times which is good on them!

Thanks Micky! I will note those books and see if I can find them at my local library. Yes, CPL is very shiny, hence why you should work for them! ;)

Jul 19, 2012, 8:36pm Top

I'm chiming in as a Library Love groupie too, Valerie. I have a decent library in Bedford, and the staff are always so friendly and knowledgeable. I love the big floor to ceiling glass windows on one around the building, the open areas with comfortable chairs and tables, the quiet room, the computer room, and .... ahem..the smell. I don't know what they use to clean the place but there's always a nice fresh citrusy scent in the air. I would love to work there when I retire.. if they'd have me.

Edited: Jul 19, 2012, 9:22pm Top

#53 Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
Source: OTS
Genre: YA/Dystopian
Pages: 390
Rating: 4*
Recommend: Yes, so you can have some closure and to find out if it ends up to be Peetniss or Galeniss

Books noted: None

"Once you're in the arena, the rest of the world becomes very distant," he continues, "All the people and things you loved or cared about almost cease to exist. the pink sky and the monsters in the jungle and the tributes who want your blood become your final reality, the only one that ever mattered. As bad as it makes you feel, you're going to have to do some killing, because in the arena, you only get one wish. And it's very costly."
"It costs your life," says Caesar.
"Oh, no. It costs a lot more than your life. To murder innocent people?" says Peeta. "It costs everything you are."

Katniss is now the face of a rebellion bent upon the demise of President Snow and bringing down the corrupted regime within the Capitol. With the odds against her, and doubts about who she can trust and who would betray her at a moment's notice, Katniss feeling hopeless and alone, faces the biggest battle of her life. May the odds be forever in her favour....

What hasn't been said about the last book in the Hunger Games trilogy? Some people love it, some hate it, some indifferent, but everyone has their reasons. In the end, I enjoyed Mockinjay, and I enjoyed the series in its entirety. As the final chapter in this much acclaimed series comes to a close, I'm left with a sense of profound sadness, not because the series ended, but for how it ended.

Jul 19, 2012, 8:39pm Top

Hi Valerie, I see you enjoyed The Kite Runner as much as I did! Awesome! Following the audiobook conversation, I use Audible.com, but when I don't need the account to be active, I'll cancel it, so I'm only paying $15.95/month when I'm after something in particular. Right now, I want to buy Anthony Trollope's Palliser novels, so whatever I can't find at my library, I'll download from Audible (one credit per month), then cancel the account until I want something else.

Jul 19, 2012, 9:10pm Top

Hi Caro! I would totally love to work at a library, even for free when I'm retired so I can be surrounded by the books all day long. With all the recent media attention of libraries closing, I do hope that they stay around long enough for me to retire.... Would be so, so, sad to have my local library shut down.

Hi Nancy! If you only download one book that month and then cancel the fee, would you have ended up paying 15.95 for the one download??

Jul 19, 2012, 9:18pm Top

I may have missed you explanation already, but your books noted category...is this books that are mentioned in the book you have read? If so (Im guessing it is) I love that and am immediately going to start noting it down too. The last book I read (Everyman by Phillip Roth) had a few in it.

Edited: Jul 19, 2012, 9:24pm Top

Ding, ding, ding! You are right Megan. I didn't actually explain anywhere what I was doing. I think I saw this one someone's thread last year, (don't remember who?) so I started noticing the names of books that are mentioned in the books that I was reading and was actually surprised at the frequency they would appear so I just adopted the habit. :)

Jul 19, 2012, 9:46pm Top

#54 There are different monthly packages available at Audible. I've chosen one credit/month which is $15.95. All of the books I've wanted cost one credit (I won't buy anything worth two credits). Check it out at Audible.

Jul 19, 2012, 10:24pm Top

Valerie- Glad you liked Mockingjay. It was a good solid trilogy.

Jul 19, 2012, 11:57pm Top

Glad you liked Mockingjay, Valerie. So were you team Peeta or team Gale? ;)

Jul 20, 2012, 6:02am Top

Hi Valerie - just realised that I hadn't posted on this thread:(

Love my local library as well, a bit sad that it recently moved to a different building as the layout is different but still a good source of books. Another one who can't get on with anything other than paper for reading. Since I learnt to read for myself I have hated being read to and I haven't really got into e-books though I did read A Child's Christmas in Wales on the laptop last year.

The Kite Runner was a good one though I preferred A Thousand Splendid Suns, really should check out if he has written anything else.

Jul 20, 2012, 8:20am Top

Oh, I see you're reading Wither! Looking forward to your thoughts on it. I read it a few years ago and had mixed reactions to the work, though I'm eager to read the sequels.

Edited: Jul 20, 2012, 8:46am Top

Hi! I'm loving the library love here. Our little small-town library doesn't have live online "chat with a librarian" for local issues (I imagine you have to have enough staff to dedicate someone to that task) but if you call during business hours, you get a real person answering, and not an automated system! There is a state-wide "ask a librarian" for standard reference questions on the Access PA website, last time I looked. We can't do online card renewals, either (library consortium rules require us to verify address with the renewal, which means seeing ID), but we do have a couple of download resources (audio and e-book) through our district library. (The one is a royal pain to use with my mp3 player, though.)

I'm fortunate to live in Pennsylvania, where anyone who has a card at their local library with an Access PA sticker can sign up online for a card at the Free Library of Philadelphia, which has MARVELOUS audio and e-book downloads. I've got a card with Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, too. You can live anywhere in PA, but you have to go in to one of their library branches to sign up for that one; they've started a program where if you have their preferred card ($35 donation a year, I think) you can renew the library card online.

Jul 20, 2012, 9:34am Top

Valerie - Just catching up here. I read the Hunger Games trilogy when it first came out, and was disappointed by the third book. It was my least favorite - I just felt like the author got too preachy with it, agreed with her point, but didn't want to be hit over the head with it. I loved the first two books though.

In the audiobook front - I don't listen to a lot of audiobooks, but my kids absolutely love them. We get most of ours from iTunes, as they have a different book that is $5.95 each month and often have specials where audiobooks are discounted to that price. Our local library has a pretty decent collection considering the size of the library (um...tiny), but all of theirs are on CD. I am hoping when we move that the library system will have books and audiobooks available for download, which is not something offered here.

Now I going back up to check out the post that Megan was talking about - what a clever idea!!

Edited: Jul 20, 2012, 12:50pm Top

Nancy - Having different packages sounds like a good idea. That way you can cover the market on those who occasionally listen to those who solely listen to it. I've tried it once when the monkey was younger and we would take long walks together and that worked quite well. But, other than that, I can't seem to find the time to actually listen to them because I would be distracted if I was doing something else.

Thanks Mark! I would have to agree with your earlier statement as well. It was not my favourite book of the trilogy.

Haha, I had to laugh when I thought about the answer to that question, Micky. It seems easier to choose than having to decide between a vampire and a werewolf don't you think?? I was team Peeta all the way. It's kind of hard not to choose the guy who does everything in his powers to keep you alive. The way the book chose to resolve that love triangle was rather unsatisfying giving how much time they took to build it.

Calm, it's always nice to have you visit. :) I completely agree with you that I enjoyed A Thousand Splendid Suns more. I don't know why that's the case, but I felt more drawn into the story and the characters in comparison. Maybe because it was about women that made it that much more relatable.
I haven't jumped on the ebook wagon either. Just can't bring myself to and I don't know if I ever will considering I have so many real books on my shelves who are getting ignored right now. :)

Hi Faith! The premise of the book is very interesting, but I'm finding that there are lulls in the story when I'm waiting for something to happen. Hopefully, it will lead somewhere good!

Hi Terri! It is a very cool feature that I used for the first time. I wonder if they pushed this new feature to prevent live calls from coming into the library so the librarians can focus on their other work without having to drop everything to answer the phone. I hate the automated system. It's so inconvenient when all I want to do is talk to someone and I get, press 1 for this, press 2 for that, and none of the options is what I'm looking for!
I think our library is the same because when I renewed my card, they had to verify a mailing address as well. I'm sure they will find some way to do that online in the near feature. It just makes sense since everything has transitioned over to the internet.

Good to see you Mamie! I totally forgot about iTunes as a source for audiobooks. Is there selection decent? Although, the only downside with books on iTunes is that I'm assuming you have to use an apple device to list/read their items? Apple is not known for their compatibility abilities which is a big damper for me.

Jul 20, 2012, 12:55pm Top

Hi Valerie - Stopping by to check out the thread. Love your review of The Kite Runner. Big thumbs up from me. That was one of my favorite reads from last year. Have a great weekend!

Jul 20, 2012, 3:27pm Top

Thank Jectshot! Very kind of you. :) It's always easier to write a review when you either love or hate the book. Thankfully, this one fell on the side of love! If you haven't already, I'd recommend A Thousand Splendid Suns from the same author. It was one of my favourite reads from last year.

Jul 20, 2012, 7:13pm Top

I had somehow x'ed yr thread. I blame the iPad... sometimes I do things I don't mean to with that thing....
found you though!*waves*

Edited: Jul 20, 2012, 7:26pm Top

Hi Kath! No worries, I always somehow lose threads that I've starred before, but with these new continuation feature, I don't think it has happen as of yet. :) I hope you have a great weekend!

Yay! TGIF. The hubby should be home any minute now and our weekend will begin. Nothing strenuous planned for this weekend, but I'm going to fully enjoy the rest and relaxation since the next 2 weeks will be kind of a whirlwind as one of my closest friends gets married! Off to change the monkey, make myself presentable, and then its PHO for dinner tonight. Yum! Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Jul 20, 2012, 7:29pm Top

Valerie- More library love! Can't get enough. Sigh! My take on the Hosseini books, is that A Thousand Splendid Suns was better written but the Kite Runner had the better story, IMHO. I'm interested to see where he goes next.

Jul 20, 2012, 9:59pm Top

Just passing through, Valerie. Have a great weekend!

Jul 20, 2012, 10:38pm Top

Hope you have a lovely weekend, Valerie.

Edited: Jul 20, 2012, 11:30pm Top

That is a very astute observation Mark. I can't really say why I liked it more except that I felt more drawn into the story. Maybe because it was about women that it connected with me on a deeper lever. I do wonder if he has written anything else since then.

Micky and Kate, I hope you guys have a fantastic weekend as well. :)

We went shoe shopping for the upcoming wedding after dinner tonight and I found a pair that I absolutely LOVE. My only lament, why so expensive?? At least they are comfortable and I think I will be able to stand in them all day, but we will see. Best part is since they don't have my size and since I don't want to drive across the city to pick up a pair at another mall, they have the option of mailing me the shoes directly to my house. Best part, no shipping cost! Not so great part, it was $90!! Oh well, that should curb my book spending for the next little while....

Jul 21, 2012, 12:15am Top

Oh good. We're playing musical threads with our discussions, but I'm glad to see you love your shoes! lol

Jul 21, 2012, 12:38am Top

I'd better love them...and hopefully be able to wear them more than once! Being a bridesmaid, the colour was very specific so I didn't have much choice. Come to think of it, they are even more expensive than the shoes I bought for my own wedding! Oh well, they will balance out all the cheapie shoes that I've bought over the years, since I am in no way, form, or fashion a girl who buys 90 dollar shoes on a regular basis...yikes!

Jul 21, 2012, 7:09am Top


You have been doing some rockin' reading!

Edited: Jul 21, 2012, 8:25am Top

Hi Valerie - Nice review of The Kite Runner up there!

Great to read about all of this library love! I would say that while my small local library is rather dreadful (all due to the mean ladies who work at the circulation desk - how unfortunate), I do love my library system and am able to get most of what I want through interlibrary loan.

Have a lovely weekend!

Jul 21, 2012, 8:42am Top

Kerri.. My library is dreadful for the same reason. Also, I am sure that I will never get over the
addition of a large screen TV for games and the drum set that they added. I simply cannot fathom that
kids can't live without those things for even an hour or two? Or that they couldn't at least put them
somewhere other than dead center the library... taking out the computers. ( those may have gone back in somewhere.. not sure. I haven't been back. )

le sigh.

Valerie .. have a wonderful weekend!

Jul 21, 2012, 10:18am Top

Waving hello and wishing you a very relaxing weekend.

Jul 21, 2012, 10:21am Top

Hi Valerie! Hope you are enjoying your weekend so far!

What color are your shoes for the wedding? My bridesmaid dresses are hot pink so the girls get to wear black shoes. I think they got off easy as I think most women already own a pair of black heals or strappy sandals!

I am having the hardest time finding shoes to go with my wedding dress though! My dress isn't pure white but isn't quite off white either. Nate and I are driving in to Halifax tomorrow to pick up 5 pairs of shoes that I ordered so I can try them all on with my dress and then take the losers back (or keep them if they are cute ;)

Jul 21, 2012, 11:48am Top

Brit! It's so great to see you posting. Hopefully that means that little Hank is giving you guys a little break here and there to rest up. :) The reading has been great and I've enjoyed every single moment of it.

Thanks Kerri! I know what you mean about mean librarians. When I was living in Vancouver there was one library I always went to and there was this librarian there who I knew was going to a be a mean one before I even interacted with her because she had this permanent scowl on her face all the time. But, of course, not wanting to judge I gave her the benefit of the doubt and went up to her for some help and I was proved right. She was mean old lady. Suffice to say, I never went to get my books checked out if she was manning the front desk (this is before the glorious days of self check out). It's my personal belief, that any job that involves customer service, you should not be hiring cranky people! It can make or break another person's day when you cross paths with the mean ones. I hope you have a great meet-up with Mr. Mark this weekend.

Good morning Kath! I haven't seen any libraries here that have a game console set up like that. They do however, have computers in the children section that the kids can play educational games that teach them to read and stuff like that. Straight up video games seems counter intuitive to me if you are encouraging children to read, so that seems rather silly to me!

Wishing you the same Jenn!

Hi Chelle! The wedding colours are coral and ivory. Coral is such a odd colour too because it's not pink and it's not purple and sometimes it looks orange (at least to me). So the shoes we got were shades of ivory which isn't too bad, but there were a lot of styles that I didn't either like, or made me feel like my feet were getting amputated. If your dress isn't white, then ivory, beige, or bone might be a nice choice? Comfort is of utmost consideration since you will be doing a lot of your day standing! :)

Edited: Jul 21, 2012, 3:11pm Top

#54 Wither by Lauren DeStefano
Source: Public Library
Genre: YA/Dystopian
Pages: 358
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Recommend: Yes. An interesting premise and solid first book in a trilogy.

Books Noted: Frankenstein

For males twenty-five is the fatal age. For women it's twenty. We are all dropping like flies.

In a world where all allergies, sexually transmitted diseases, and even cancer have been eradicated, there exist only one tiny, but unavoidable problem, the life expectancy does not exceed the age of twenty-five. Genetic engineering has produced a society that is plagued by orphans, prostitutes, or those lucky enough to be abducted and married off to the wealthy first "generationers" who for some reason are exempted by this time handicap. Rhine a sixteen year old who is forced into a world of luxury and comfort beyond her imaginings, but underneath all the glitz and glamour is a sinister secret that she might have rather left uncovered. Time is running out, but she will fake obedience, she will fake submission, and in the end she will ultimately fake love, only to win one thing - her freedom.

The premise and overall story of Wither was interesting and engaging. There were definite moments where I felt creeped out and other times where I felt like I was being lead down a meandering maze. I will be interested to find out what happens in the subsequent books of the trilogy as part my frustration with the first book was the feeling that so many things were left unexplored, so many questions were left unanswered. In terms of YA fiction, this was above average fare and worth pursuing.

Jul 21, 2012, 2:39pm Top

Hi Valerie,
I'm sure your shoes will do the trick, its hard when you're a bridesmaid as you kind of have to have a decent pair of shoes, or run the risk of being accused of ruining the wedding aesthetic. :| Eeek, perish the thought!

Jul 21, 2012, 5:05pm Top

#77 - Hi! More mean staff - that's dreadful! I understand your concern about the gaming, but it does tend to get kids in the library. Other than that, I have very little knowledge of children or young adult services.

#80 - Valerie - As someone who's almost a librarian, I apologize for that mean librarian! That's not right! Patron service and service to the public is so much emphasized in my courses that it's bizarre to run across people like that at a library. Also, I should have pointed out that the one actual librarian at my library is very helpful and friendly. The mean ladies are not librarians. The weird thing is that it's been such a long time (we moved to this town 2 years ago) since I've run into such unpleasant library staff, both librarians and support staff, so it's rather sad.

Edited: Jul 21, 2012, 10:35pm Top

Hi Megan! Being a bridesmaid is more work than I thought. Since this is my third time, you kinda get the drill and what is expected. It's not just about looking pretty I tell ya, but getting the chance to be all dolled up isn't too bad either. :)

Hi Kerri! You must be out with Mr. Mark right now enjoying some good book banter.
I didn't understand it either. I had observed this one lady for a long time since I spent so much of my time there when I was younger and even after my encounter with her, I'd watch the way she treated other patrons and it was pretty much the same. Lots of frowning, really short and curt answers, and so it always made me wonder why she was so unhappy all the time.
I did have one lady at my current library who when first returned books back gave me a rather annoyed look and informed me that books are supposed to be dropped off at the slots on the side of the building and not at the front desk (and this is my polite editing of her tone and words). I pleasantly thanked her and went to do as I was told, but what I was thinking was, this is my first time here and if it weren't for my love of books, I'd probably never come back because you were rude to someone who didn't know her way around. Suffice to say, I was again disappointed with the lack of basic common manners.

I started The 19th Wife last night and it has completely hooked me in! Written in part memoir, part expose, part historical fiction fashion, it goes into the intimate details of life within the extreme sect of the Mormon faith, an offshoot of what is known today as the Church of Latter Day Saints. Besides being extremely interesting and immersive, there are also, believe it or not, laugh out loud moments!

Jul 21, 2012, 10:31pm Top

Hi Jolerie,

great Review on Wither - Again one of those books on my Tbr pile. Think will bring it up a few more notches. Have a lovely weekend and I am glad to hear that your ivory shoes.

Jul 21, 2012, 11:44pm Top

Valerie - End of a good week that sees you back fully ensconsed and racing up the posting league.
I was told by a chinese girlfriend many moons ago that I should never buy shoes as a present for a loved one as it is a sign that you want them to leave. My last present for her was a stout pair of walking shoes she wanted for a trip of hers I was funding overseas - gospel truth - I never saw her again!

Jul 22, 2012, 1:14am Top

I've heard several people who loved The Kite Runner say that A Thousand Splendid Suns was even better. I read and loved the former; I own but have not yet gotten around to reading the latter. It sounds like you would be another to recommend it!

Jul 22, 2012, 6:53am Top

Hmmm, maybe I should try A Thousand Splendid Suns. It's been sitting on my TBR pile for a long time.

Edited: Jul 22, 2012, 7:43am Top

hmmm I know I read The 19th Wife .. but apparently didn't rate it and have little memory of it.
As for Kite Runner.. it was a fantastic book, but so sad! Someone started a blog about the SisterWives reality show. It is the nastiest, meanest piece of garbage I have ever seen on the internet... and completely
explains why kids are bullies. Their parents are, too. These people stalk the family, look up public records involving them and more. Like name calling. Some of these people laugh about sitting and watching the show with their kids and calling them names and making nasty comments.. and say how proud they are that the kids can see what fakes these people are.. etc. Horrifying. People can be so ugly.

Jul 22, 2012, 7:46am Top

Hi Valerie

#15 I feel like I've completely missed the boat on Khaled Hosseini's books - I remember them being really popular several years ago and I even have a copy of A Thousand Splendid Suns lurking in my TBR pile but I don't feel compelled to read it for some reason. You're written a great review of The Kite Runner though

Jul 22, 2012, 7:49am Top

Chiming in about local libraries: I love my library too. I am able to put books on interlibrary loan if I need to, although it takes a while to get them. My local library has research materials that I can use for my college papers. I can vet books to decide whether or not I want to add them to my personal library. The list goes on and on!

Jul 22, 2012, 8:49am Top

Morning Valerie- hope your weekend is going well. I've had The 19th Wife in the stacks forever, glad you are enjoying it.
The Meet-Up was fantastic! I wish we could have had more book banter but there were other people involved. LOL.

Edited: Jul 22, 2012, 12:33pm Top

Thanks drachenbraut. I hope you enjoy the book when you get the chance to read it and I look forward to see your take on it!

Hi Paul! The various superstitions that each culture has is fascinating to me. I've heard the shoe from before as well and I'm sorry it rings true in your case. But I'm sure it's for the best since you snagged SWMBO! ;)

Oh Ellen, I think you will really enjoy A Thousand Splendid Suns when you read it, although enjoy is an odd word to use since the book explores some painful subjects. I do hope you can give it a try sooner than later. :)

Do it Rachel! You will not regret it. I don't think it's the kind of book that you will finish and feel like it was time wasted.

Hi Kath! Yes, Hosseini seems to have flare for writing about the depths of human suffering, and yet there is always, always hope.
I actually watched that show for a bit and heard about all the controversy that was swirling around the show and how they were forced to leave their homes in fear of their lives. I think it's when people resort to such ugliness to express themselves, that is only highlights their ignorance. I'll be honest and admit that I don't understand that kind of lifestyle choice and it boggles my mind how they justify it, but no matter what, I can separate what they do with who they are. It doesn't make them bad people, just people who have chosen a different way to live, so I definitely don't condone that nasty form of expression. If only we truly treated everyone the way we would want to be treated, this world would be filled with so much less hate.

Heather, you haven't missed the boat yet! It will always be ready for you when you decide to read it. :) Sometimes books don't call to us for some reason, but I say give the book a couple of pages to see what you think? I remember it hooked me in right from the beginning. If it doesn't do the same for you, no harm, no foul, you move onto the next boat. ;)

Why am I not surprised you love your library, Stasia. :) That's great that your library also has the academic books that will help you with your courses. Interlibrary loans are also so great because it just makes that much books available at the click of a button.

Good Morning Mr. Mark! I guess it wouldn't do to snub the spouses while you guys get lost in book talk. :) I think you would enjoy The 19th Wife. It's one of those I don't really want to put down even though I should be going to bed kind of book.

Jul 22, 2012, 12:35pm Top

"I should be going to bed kind of book". I like the sound of that, although in my case sleep trumps reading every time.

Jul 23, 2012, 2:47pm Top

Interesting review of Wither, Valerie, but I'm still not sure I'm sold. The cover really creeps me out and I've heard mixed reviews...

Edited: Jul 23, 2012, 11:35pm Top

#55 The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff
Source: OTS
Genre: Fiction/Historical
Pages: 507
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Recommend: Yes, if you have any interest in the historical foundations of Mormonism, polygamy, and thrown in for good measure, a murder mystery to tie it all together.

Books noted: The 19th Wife, Hamlet

The Territory of Utah, glorious as it may be, spiked by granite peaks and red jasper rocks, cut by echoing canyons and ravines, spread upon a wide basin of gamma grass and wandering streams, this land of blowing snow and sand, of iron, copper, and the great salten sea - Utah, whose scarlet-golden beauty marks the best of God's handiwork - the Territory of Utah stands defiant as a Theocracy within the borders of our beloved Democracy, imperium in imperio.

Ann Eliza Dee Young is infamous for her crusade to end polygamy in the States. Born into a polygamous family, coerced into a polygamous marriage, and being the 19th wife of the notorious Brigham Young, Ann will engage her husband in one of history's most scandalous and nasty public divorces. Step aside Cruise and Holmes, the Brigham's were the original poster couple for splitsville.
Flash forward to modern day and we get a murder mystery right in the heart of Mesadale, the centre and mecca of a fundamentalist Mormon sect where polygamy is still touted as a pillar of the religious beliefs. Beckylyn Scott, another 19th wife is accused of murdering her husband in cold blood. The only problem, her son, a lost boy, doesn't believe she is guilty of the crime, and yet all evidence points towards her culpability. Both women's lives, although separated by time will shed light into what has been shrouded in a cloud of secrecy and shame, the secrets of plural marriages and the intimate details within the ranks of The Church of Latter Saints.

A blend of historical narrative, crime mystery, and biographical memoir, Ebershoff strikes a perfect balance between fact and fiction. The life of Ann Eliza Dee Young is nothing short of fascinating. The fictional account of a domestic murder mystery is riveting. Although the constant shifting of time and characters may be jarring for some, I was thoroughly engaged by the overall picture that was being painted. My one criticism would be that the book seemed to have lost steam by the last quarter of the story, but perhaps that is an unavoidable problem when dealing with a real historical figure whose experiences have already been written and recorded by time. Regardless of the tiny hiccup of the ending, I would heartily recommend this book to anyone who's interested in the subject matter.

Notes: 1) I don't think the Bible mentions that Jesus was physically appealing? If anything it actually states the opposite, so an inaccurate detail mentioned in the story.
2) The historical LDS church (in the book) repeatedly used the Bible forefathers (especially Abraham and Sarah) as an example on how God not only allows polygamy but blesses it which is completely inaccurate? I don't understand how anyone who reads the text for themselves wouldn't see that there were some serious and negative consequences to what can only be described as adultery. Maybe the converts didn't have access to the Bible, but that discrepancy kept noodling around in my head while I was reading the book.

Jul 23, 2012, 4:04pm Top

Hey Micky! I'd only recommend it if dystopia is a genre you really enjoy and since it is a genre that I typically like, the book was a pretty good read for me. :)

Jul 23, 2012, 6:23pm Top

Micky: I enjoyed Wither when I read it, but it does have a more explicit subject matter than you'd normally get. Not graphic, but mature. It made me a little uncomfortable when I let my imagination take flight, but otherwise the story holds its own among other current books of its type.

Jul 23, 2012, 9:58pm Top

Yeah, what UnrulySun said. Very well put. :) Have we convinced you to give it a try yet, Micky??

Jul 23, 2012, 10:12pm Top

Valerie- Loved your review of The 19th Wife. It really does sound interesting. Fortunately I have this one in the stacks. I need to move it up.

Edited: Jul 23, 2012, 10:44pm Top

Note: The following is not a rant or meant to be a lecture or anything that should lead you to believe that I am annoyed with you. :) More of a clarification, if you will.

I am a member of the Mormon church. While polygamy was practiced for a time in the late 1800's, it did not resemble anything like what is seen today in the very secretive and frankly (IMO) evil groups who are practicing it. It is frustrating to have my religion confused with a group of people who are living in a way that is unacceptable. Many of the people who write and contribute to the misleading stories and articles are disaffected members of the church with an agenda. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints do not practice or condone the practice of polygamy.
Re: The 19th Wife - It is important to remember that it is a work of historical fiction that may not have used reliable sources for its information. For example, Eliza Ann's own writings state more than once that her marriage to Brigham Young was platonic. The son that is portrayed as his in the book/film was actually her son from her previous marriage. There is a payload of sensationalism surrounding the topic of polygamy, and not everyone is particular as to accuracy.
Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons) had access to the Bible and studied it from the beginning. We have another book of scripture (The Book of Mormon) that we use in addition to, but not in exclusion of the Bible. Of course there are instances of polygamy in the Old Testament. Most Bible scholars would not argue with that.

Here is an article that states the church's position on the subject: Polygamy Then and Now.

And I'm going to hop off my soap box now. ((hugs))

Edited: Jul 23, 2012, 11:22pm Top

Thanks Mark! I hope you enjoy it when you get a chance to bump it up on the list. :)

No offense taken of course Jenn! Thanks for clarification and giving me even more insight! I do realize the book is a work of fiction, but was based on real historical figures. If that wasn't made clear in my earlier comments, I apologize. And I do hope nothing that was stated in my review will be mistaken as a criticism to the people of the Mormon faith.
I can understand where your frustration comes from and there was a section on the book where they included the work of a student who was doing research for her Masters degree based on the life of Ann Eliza Young. She made a point that I thought was very valid. For so long the church was very resistant in discussing the historical roots or even sharing the information stored in their church archives which lead to further "guessing" and "hypothesis" that were sensational in nature. Her argument was that intense secrecy in the past ended up making the Mormon faith inexplicably connected with the polygamy. Rather than shrouding it in secrecy, an honest and scholarly look at it's place in history would probably been more clarifying and perhaps could have helped with the negative astigmatism associated with it today.
Anyways, all this is to say that people of all faiths should be respected and all religion comes with it's share of "baggage". Books like The 19th Wife offer a possible glimpse into a world that most are not knowledgable in, but as with ALL things we read, should be taken with a grain of salt. ((Hugs)) right back at you. :)

Jul 23, 2012, 11:30pm Top

Valerie, your comments were thoughtful and it was absolutely clear that you understood it to be a work of fiction. My argument is perhaps with the book itself...
I also read a book earlier this month on Mitt Romney that was written by a somewhat disaffected member of my church and his cynical approach to matters that are serious to me was pretty offensive. That said, I try really hard not to take other people's opinions personally :P.

Edited: Jul 24, 2012, 7:40am Top

It is unfortunate that break-off cults that participate in violence or oppression are so easily associated with the more established religions. It used to be Nation of Islam--everyone associated it with Muslims. Now it's all these little polygamist cults that get associated with LDS. It's unfortunate...but a sincere interest in learning more about a faith will always clarify these issues. :)

I actually talked to a couple of Mormon missionaries every week for about 3 months a while ago. I even finished reading the Book of Mormon. I did that because I'd just come from a small-town university at which people were always mocking Mormons (and Scientologists--I also read Dianetics)...such mockery of people that they clearly don't understand really frustrates me!

Luckily I've seen NOTHING of this sort of mockery on LibraryThing, which is one reason why it's my favorite internet site. :)

Jul 24, 2012, 7:18am Top

I have The 19th Wife on my shelves too - after your review, I'm looking forward to it!

Edited: Jul 24, 2012, 7:51am Top

Good info. I have read a bit about the Mormon church and polygamy. I always just thought it ( polygamy)
to be simply a lifestyle choice, not part of a religion. (I have to say that even some of those who
practice it are a bit confused, from some of the things I've read..mostly online) I did always know that it wasn't common in the Mormon religion, but did not know that it was separate until I did further reading.

The attention brought to the subject byThe Browns and the Dargers should, imo have made it
easier to understand. Instead, it has brought all sorts of hostility. I don't understand why. It is
in my opinion, another failure of live and let live. I think it is a fine idea.. seriously.. as long as it
hasn't deteriorated into a Warren Jeffs- like situation, which is completely different .

I have never read either the Book of Mormon, or Dianetics . I do think that Scientology is crazy and
cult-like.. based on what I have seen and heard and read about it. However, If someone else thinks of
it as a religion, that is up to them. All religions have their ... idiosyncrasies and flaws.. again IMO.

Jul 24, 2012, 9:18am Top

>106 mckait: Are you saying you think polygamy is a fine idea? (I'm only clarifying because I'm not certain I understood you properly). Actually, I think polygamy is "fine" too. I would never do it, but I don't care what other people do with their lives. That's their choice.

But there are a couple of problems with polygamy. The first is that it leads to legal issues. (How does one do one's taxes?) The second is that BECAUSE it's illegal in America, it tends to lead to cult-like behavior in which young girls are pressured into marriages before they are mature enough to make that decision. Even someone who's an adult--if she's always been in an isolated group, then she doesn't have all the facts about what her choices are. Plus, she's pressured by people she knows and loves to conform. That's not good. I'm sure such pressure occurs in less isolated societies, too...such as in countries where polygamy is legal. And that's a shame, too. But at least people in those countries have more access to the outside world because they don't life in an isolated group.

And, come to think of it, don't we ALL undergo pressures to conform to society? :)

As for Scientology, I don't know any Scientologists, and I'm not going to judge them based on behavior of actors who are trying to get in the headlines. Most internet sources I come across are either blatantly anti-Scientology or blatantly pro-Scientology, so it's difficult to get a balanced middle view. I found Dianetics to be very uninspiring and WAY WAY WAY too Freudian for my tastes. In fact, it's the only religious text I've read that didn't seem inspiring in the slightest. But OTHER people apparently find it inspiring. *shrugs*

Jul 24, 2012, 11:27am Top

Thanks Amber! I will be interested to see what you think of it when you get the chance to read it!

Thanks Kath and Rachel for sharing your thoughts! I think at the end of it all, whenever the topics of religion and faith are brought up, it tends to be a sensitive issue. And no doubt it's because we aren't talking about the weather, or any old random thing, but these are issues that some people live and die by. What we think as odd, someone else is embracing whole heartedly. And more often than not, what we do ourselves will be interpreted by someone else as "crazy". I, myself will live by the old, but wise tenet, treat and love your neighbour as yourself.

Jul 24, 2012, 11:55am Top

The problem I've noticed with that wise tenet is that some people don't like to be treated the same way I do. :) But what can we do? We can't please everyone.

Jul 24, 2012, 11:58am Top

Hahaha, that's true as well Rachel. I do my part, wash my hands clean, and hope for a good nights rest. :)

Edited: Jul 24, 2012, 12:10pm Top

Valerie, Rachel & Kath - One of the supposed advantages of embracing islam is the perceived ability to take up to four wives. Having being devotedly (psst don't tell her as I try to pretend I am long suffering) married for 18 years but having a number of friends with more than 1 wife, I do feel it is abused more as an excuse of being able to sleep with different ladies and to "trade-in" a wife you've got tired with for a newer more exciting model. Sorry, but as one who is legally allowed to do so I must report to be fairly anti Polygamy as I have seen what it does to ladies largely cast aside and the complications for children. Thought from time to time that it would be a useful tool to control SWMBOs temper with but her promise to cut something off if I ever even considered such an arrangement leads me to the certainty that it shall never happen in my case!

Edited: Jul 24, 2012, 12:53pm Top

opps double post :P

Edited: Jul 24, 2012, 12:54pm Top

>107 The_Hibernator: Um... yes. I think it's a good idea for those who are interested in that lifestyle. Why not?
Communal living has been around for a long time. As for issues.. every life path has it's issues, trust me.

I do in fact know someone who tried Scientology. My opinion is based on what he told me, as well as
what I have seen and read online.

Paul.. I have read that, too. I think it is something that all parties would need to agree too, and that
it has pitfalls like any social situation, civil union or marriage. But I do think it has it's merits.

AS for treat other people as you would like to be treated.... I think that *be nice* is something that can be embraced by all... and I also think that having the opinion that a way of life is flawed or "crazy" is fine.. as long as it is my opinion and not part of the way I treat someone. I always try to be nice first... but I do know how to retaliate to unkindness directed to myself or those I care about.


And As I discussed with a friend last night, I am pretty certain that some others think my beliefs are a bit crazy, too.

Jul 24, 2012, 1:00pm Top

Paul, if that isn't an incentive to abstain from bringing another lady home, I don't know what would be. :)

Kath, well said! Every life path definitely has its list of pros and cons.

Some people might say all of us here on LT are nuts, considering how we love our books, how many books we buy, and for some, the crazy speed at which we consume these books. And need I even mention the lists upon lists, spreadsheets upon spreadsheets that we like to keep. Nuts you say? I embrace it! :)

Jul 24, 2012, 1:06pm Top

I admit, to not caring much what people think.... I just try to think of it as being me..
I have no other way to be..

Another good thing about LT, we can normally have pretty civil discussions :)

Jul 24, 2012, 1:09pm Top

I think I struggle with caring too much what other people think. Sometimes it prevents me from doing the things I enjoy because I'm so consumed with what other's may think, but its something I'm learning, slowly. :)

I was telling my husband the same thing yesterday. I told him the were last couple of conversations to have occurred on another internet site, I imagine a lot of rude and harsh words would have been exchanged, but I'm so confident of the people here and their ability to respect one another's differences and points of view.

Jul 24, 2012, 1:49pm Top

114 I know people think I'm nuts over books! Or at least Nate does :) My friends like my nuttiness as that means they know who to borrow books from!

Jul 24, 2012, 1:54pm Top

Chelle, you are in good company! My hubby also doesn't get why I need to have so many books, but he loves me and so he has to put up with all the piles of books I have all over the place. :)

You know you've found kindred spirits because here when you tell people you have a spreadsheet for all your books, people are like, that's so awesome! Anytime I tell my friends the same thing, they give me the uhh...that's just weird look, but I forgive them. They just don't understand that it's the only way I can keep track of my 700+ books...ha!

Jul 24, 2012, 3:19pm Top

>111 PaulCranswick: lol Paul! I used to teach English to a Sudanese Immigrant here in NZ, she and her daughters were fully veiled and from what I could tell, devoutly Muslim. It was so funny the day she gave her husband a lecture in pigeon English about how that now they were in NZ he was only allowed one wife, and that if he wanted more she was pleased for him to go back to Sudan. They were laughing about it, but boy, did she mean business!

Jul 24, 2012, 4:28pm Top

Why would any sane man want two wives - simply a case of doubling his trouble (kidding ladies!).

Jul 24, 2012, 4:41pm Top

Can I vote for polyandry?

Jul 24, 2012, 4:43pm Top

Wow Caro - just because the poor hubster cannot decide what to wear?

Jul 24, 2012, 4:46pm Top

Oh dear, now why in the world would anyone want more than one husband?

Hi Valerie - you've got some interesting discussions going on over here!

Jul 24, 2012, 5:08pm Top

Can all the husbands be eunuchs? And beautiful? And handy?

Jul 24, 2012, 5:27pm Top

>97 jolerie: I don't mind dystopias but it's not my favourite subgenre either. I also seem to recall reading a less than stellar review of the book on FYA, whom I always trust when it comes to YA. They've never steered me wrong. So I think I'll hold off.

Edited: Jul 24, 2012, 5:46pm Top

Thanks for dropping by Megan, Caro, Paul, Kathy, Mamie, and Micky!

I don't know about the rest of you, but one husband is plenty for me. :)

Hi Megan. Hopefully seeing you around the threads means your boys are officially back to normal.

Amen Paul. I can't even vote for my own sex. We can be a whole lot of trouble, BUT we also can be a whole lot of fun!

Caro...haha! I can't imagine the mess I'd have to clean up with more than of those kicking around And imagine all the time spent waiting around for them!

Kathy, a eunuch? That's like taking all the fun out of it. I don't know about beautiful, but mine sure is handy! Husband, I mean, not eunuch. Haha! :)

Thanks Mamie! Definitely some serious and some light hearted banter going on. It's nice to have a balance of both. :)

Good call Micky! You would know what you like best. :) What is this FYA that you are referring to?

Jul 24, 2012, 6:39pm Top

Well I figure, if I can have all those beautiful eunuchs serving me, I must be the most desirable woman in the world. Therefore, "all the fun" can be had with anyone else I want! Problem solved. Plus, the lawn is manicured and my supper made.

Jul 24, 2012, 7:21pm Top

LoL. I'm in total agreement with you. One spouse is more than enough. Thank you very much.
Good discussions over here.
Anyone read Under the Banner of Heaven? I thought it was an excellent look at the Mormons, although not always flattering.

Jul 24, 2012, 8:27pm Top

Thanks, Mark, for mentioning Krakauer's excellent book. You saved me the troublemof looking it up.

I too am enjoying the interesting chat on your thread, Valerie. What a civil group we are! I read about others' beliefs and actions with interest but I am only responsible for my beliefs and my actions. I wish more people had a "live and let live" philosophy. There would certainly be less strife in the world.

Edited: Jul 25, 2012, 12:20am Top

I am also firmly in the one spouse camp, as is my husband - the thought leaves him a little horrified. Two of me?!? :)
I'm here, sticking my neck out again as the representative Mormon. Some of my beliefs may seem different, as Catholic is different from Baptist is different from Lutheran. We are Christian, we believe in Christ. I am trying as hard as any of you to live a good life and respect the efforts of others who are doing the same. What I love about LT is how kind people here are - that I feel safe letting you know my point of view on some of the books out there, and even if we disagree, you'll consider my point of view. I really appreciate that.

It is hard sometimes, dealing with sensationalist "pop" culture, seeing people taking advantage of current events to make money by misrepresenting the truth. I can deal with not flattering - every group has their occasional embarrassing member - but Under the Banner of Heaven is not really a look at the Mormons. Again, it's a look at "splinter groups", people (polygamists) doing things that are illegal and even crazy. I read it, and I read the sources and looked into them. 90% of the sources used by Krakauer were disaffected members or anti-Mormon. His story and his sources were unbalanced. I was really disappointed because I have enjoyed other books of his very much. This one was inaccurate.

I understand where someone might see things the way this researcher Valerie mentions did:
For so long the church was very resistant in discussing the historical roots or even sharing the information stored in their church archives which lead to further "guessing" and "hypothesis" that were sensational in nature. Her argument was that intense secrecy in the past ended up making the Mormon faith inexplicably connected with the polygamy. Rather than shrouding it in secrecy, an honest and scholarly look at its place in history would probably been more clarifying and perhaps could have helped with the negative astigmatism associated with it today.
However, I believe that looking at it from a historical perspective, what the early members of the church had been through (mob violence, tarring and feathering, driven from their homes multiple times, their leader imprisoned then shot by a mob, an extermination order signed by the Governor of Missouri, the U.S. Army sent to Utah, etc.) may have influenced most people to take a "no comment" stance about something that while not at all a secret was definitely controversial and difficult. Today, many papers and studies and other writings on the subject can be found at mormon.org, lds.org and in the BYU archives. As stated in the article I referenced in my last comment; polygamy was practiced by a very small number of people. It was felt to be a commandment from God. At the time, it was not illegal in the U.S. or its territories. When it was made illegal, the practice was ended. No new polygamous marriages were created. Honoring the law of our land is one of the tenets of the LDS faith. Some of those who were in polygamous relationships left the U.S. and went to Mexico rather than leave a number of wives and children without support.

Anyone who is really interested in history and factual representations could read the Autobiography of Parley P. Pratt, an early convert to the LDS faith or even The Book of Mormon. If you want an historical novel type presentation that's fairly well done, try The Work and the Glory, which is a historical series beginning with the founding of the LDS church and continuing through the pioneer trek. If you're just looking for something sensational about the LDS faith, there's plenty of that, and all the crazies are coming out of the swamp because a member of the LDS faith is running for president. If you want to know what Mormons believe, ask one you know and trust. Nearly everybody knows one or two ; ). If you don't know a Mormon, go to Mormon.org.

There is a lot more stuff than normal out there right now, people who have left the LDS church and are talking about how they feel and what they experienced. They are angry and hurt. Their experience - what they are angry about or hurt by - that has not been my experience. I was raised to think, to study, to find out for myself. I have two brothers who have chosen to leave the LDS faith for different reasons. They are still a part of our family, totally accepted and loved. We may be sorry they have chosen a different path, but it doesn't change how we feel about them or their wives (fabulous women, both). I have a dearly loved uncle who is gay. He has not been ostracized or left out of family activities. He has 3 fabulous children and a bunch of grandchildren, all who are active in the LDS faith and welcome his involvement with their families. This is my "normal". I am sorry for those who have a harder time separating a disagreement regarding lifestyle from their affection for the person.

I don't mean to hijack your thread Valerie, sorry. :)

Jul 25, 2012, 12:44am Top

Kathy, so I see you want your cake and eat it too! ;)

Thanks Mark, Donna and Jenn for your books suggestions, thoughts and clarifications.
I think anytime anyone writes a book, they come from a perspective and sometimes it's more bias than others. Heck, to say it's not bias would clearly be false. Just gotta be careful of the things we read whether it's fiction, non-fiction or anything else in between. We all have the right to like what we like and dislike what we don't.
Jenn, thank you once again for your courage and sharing your thoughts. You are absolutely correct in that this is a safe place to do so (as per all the messages people have written so far have been done in a spirit of respect). I think you should write a book about the positive side and the common misconceptions about the Mormon faith to balance out all the other books out on the market. :)
In the end, hopefully we can all focus on what we all love and have in common - BOOKS! :D

Jul 25, 2012, 3:11am Top

Jenn - lovely, thoughtful and considered post.

I am trying as hard as any of you to live a good life and respect the efforts of others who are doing the same. What I love about LT is how kind people here are - that I feel safe letting you know my point of view on some of the books out there, and even if we disagree, you'll consider my point of view. I really appreciate that.

Would only that more people had that philosophy for life. There is far too little toleration and respect for peoples views nowadays.

Jul 25, 2012, 6:45am Top

Nothing to add here other than it's been a delightful thread to read.

Jul 25, 2012, 7:34am Top

Jenn... What Paul said.

I was sort of raised Catholic. ( It didn't take) I sometimes find reading about religions interesting...
sometimes not so much. We have a Book of Mormon here somewhere.. Those sweet boys on their mission left it here a few years ago. They were here quite a few times, and I have to say that I wonder how they are.. I quite liked them :) Anyway.. I digress.

Religions, theoretically they all have the same destination in mind, but they have different maps to get to it. Sometimes folks go off road and take a less known road or even a dirt path. To those using the maps, since they are all trying to get to the same place, what matter how they get there? Of course, the maps all have a different name for the destination, which always looks rather like the Emerald City in my mind. I honestly pass no judgement on anyones choice of maps, and expect no judgement on my own. It only makes sense that the media would attend to the unusual. I would like it if people didn't judge entire philosophies by the journey of a few, but that is unlikely.

Although I try hard not to be judgmental, Scientology still sounds crazy to me, but I don't know even enough to know they they do indeed have the same destination in mind? But so what? What does it matter what I think of them, or they think of me... or you. PffffT! Everyone needs to try to stay on their own path and be as happy as they can.

Jul 25, 2012, 4:12pm Top

Interesting article, I thought... sort of goes along with our discussion so I thought I would link it :)

Jul 25, 2012, 5:26pm Top

>126 jolerie: Oh Valerie, have I not introduced you to the amazing (but bad for the TBR list) Forever Young Adult? I apologize in advance. ;)

Edited: Jul 25, 2012, 9:05pm Top

Valerie- Thanks to you, I just picked up a library copy of the Giver. I showed it to my wife and she said she thinks she had read it. My son chimed in and said he had read it back in school and my wife read it with him. See, you are a trendsetter. It looks like I'll get to it soon. It helps it's such a shorty!

Jul 25, 2012, 9:54pm Top

I just noticed that Lowry has written a fourth book in the Giver set (Son) which ties all three of the previous ones together. (touchstone not available yet, but here's an amz link: http://www.amazon.com/Son-Lois-Lowry/dp/0547887205/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF...)

Jul 25, 2012, 10:19pm Top

Hi Paul, Morphy, Kath, Micky, Mark, and Kathy!

Thanks everyone for all your thoughtful and insightful comments. I wake up each morning with a smile on my face as I look forward to all your company. :)

Paul, couldn't agree with you enough!

Thanks for spending time on my thread, Morphy!

Kath, I will have to come back and read over that article. I'm sure it will be very interesting!

Micky, when and not if I add a bunch of new books to my WL, I know whose thread to blame. ;)

Mark, I am so confident you will enjoy that little gem. And since it's such a small book, you will probably blaze through it in one sitting.

Kathy, apparently there are several other books that Lowry wrote, but I don't think they are directly related to the storyline in The Giver. If (Son) is related to the first book, I would jump at the opportunity to read that one since I really enjoyed The Giver, hence the 5 star rating! :)

Jul 25, 2012, 10:48pm Top

Hi Valerie - Interesting discussion! Not being wildly religious myself (but respectful of others' beliefs), I don't have much to add. The only thing I'll say about Scientology is while their theology doesn't bother me (it just seems like a lot of self-help stuff, with a little sci-fi thrown in), it does seem like evidence shows the organization to be incredibly authoritarian and kinda scary.

Jul 26, 2012, 4:41am Top

Ha! The Giver Quartet! I love how smoothly they transition from "trilogy" to "quartet."

Jul 26, 2012, 8:17am Top

I have The Giver as well... unread so far :P

Jul 26, 2012, 9:34am Top

HI Valerie! I have nothing to add to the very interesting conversation, just popping in to say hello :)

Jul 26, 2012, 9:58am Top

>142 mckait: You should read it. Even if you have no intention of reading the "quartet." It's standalone.

Jul 26, 2012, 12:01pm Top

Hi Kerri! I don't really know much about Scientology except for the stuff you see in entertainment news and that we all know doesn't paint it always in the most flattering light. I do find it curious that they are able to get so many celebrity endorsements. There must be something about their theology that appeals to the rich and famous!

Rachel, I will probably read all the other books in the series, including the new one being released this year at some point. Just gotta remember not to compare them to The Giver and it should be fine. :)

Kath, you should join Mark in his reading since he just got it from the library. It's a quickie so you won't feel like you are spending too much time with it!

Thanks for dropping by Chelle!

My friend's bachelorette party is tomorrow morning and we are planning on going white water rafting and cliff jumping (which I won't be doing)! We will be leaving tonight to spend one night in the mountains and really what I mean is that we rented a condo in Canmore and will just have some fun relaxing and pampering ourselves. Will catch up with everyone in a couple of days! :)

Jul 26, 2012, 2:08pm Top

wow that sounds like a great bachelorette!! I would love that!
Better than getting drunk and stupid at a bar any day!

Jul 26, 2012, 3:03pm Top

Oooh, I like your kind of mountaineering! Hope you have a great time!

Jul 26, 2012, 5:35pm Top

Oh man I love Canmore! If you have time for bookshopping there's an amazing secondhand shop called the Second Story. It's in a basement on the main drag of town (if I remember correctly). Hope you have a great girls' day!

Jul 26, 2012, 6:25pm Top

Have fun!

Jul 26, 2012, 6:50pm Top

Chelle's right- that party sounds like lots of fun. What a treat!

Jul 26, 2012, 7:45pm Top

Valerie- Have a great time! Enjoy!

Jul 26, 2012, 9:28pm Top

Have fun, Valerie!

Jul 27, 2012, 8:52am Top

Cliff jumping? rafting? I sure hope that there will be pics!

Jul 28, 2012, 11:49pm Top

Thanks for visiting Chelle, Amber, Micky, Jenn, Mamie, Mark, Joe, and Kath!

It was a very fun and relaxing trip, but I definitely missed my hubby and Caleb while I was gone. So silly since it really only 24 hours away from the little guy, but it was my first time spending the night away from him so there was a slight pang of homesickness. Whitewater rafting is SOOO much fun! We had 2 girls actually fall out of the raft, but that was partly because the instructor was trying to flip our boat of girls into the water! Tomorrow is the bridal shower and the wedding is one week so everything is a bit crazy. Will try to slowly catch up with everyone over the next little bit. :)

Jul 29, 2012, 12:06am Top

Valerie - white water rafting over book shopping and getting sozzled - well it takes all sorts I suppose! Does look almost literally a blast - will you be reunited with hubby and Caleb for the bridal shower? Looked up Canmore and it does look a great destination.

Edited: Jul 29, 2012, 1:33am Top

#56 Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff
Source: Early Reviewer
Genre: Fantasy/Steampunk
Pages: 313
Rating: 3.75*
Recommend: Yes, especially if you interested in a fresh take on steampunk fantasy.

Books noted: None

"When a man's fate is not his own, when he may die at the behest of a man born luckier or wealthier, when he sweats all his life for scraps from another's table, then he is in peril."
Daichi's eyes glittered in the half light.
"But when he accepts it in his heart, when he ceases to struggle against that fundamental injustice, then he is a slave."

A world abandoned by the gods of old, where once majestic creatures of lore graced the heavens, but have long since deserted a world choked and dying of pollution. Machines rule the world. A corrupt imperial family is headed by a selfish and cruel emperor. A hidden resistance group is bent upon bringing down the last ruler of a dynasty at any cost. This is the world that Yukiko calls home. Commanded by her emperor, accompanied by her father, Yukiko, must journey into the wilderness to find and capture an extinct creature that has not been sighted for generations. The cost of the mission to Yukiko may be everything she holds dear and close to her heart.

Stormdancer takes your typical steampunk setting and transforms it into to an entirely original world filled with the tastes and sounds of feudal Japan. A lush and vibrant world without interesting characters is like a canvas void of colours and details. In that respect, Kristoff was successful in building a world that you want to explore, and characters you can't help but want to cheer for. Overall, a very solid and intriguing introduction to a series that I fully intend on following. Recommend for anyone who is interested in a creative interpretation on a well established genre.

Jul 29, 2012, 10:37am Top

Hi Valerie - Glad to hear the bachelorette weekend went well - that sounds like a lot of fun and a nice departure form the usual bachelorette party stuff.

I haven't read much steampunk, but Stormdancer sounds quite good. I'll throw it on the wishlist.

Jul 29, 2012, 11:58am Top

Interesting. Japanese steampunk. I'll have to try to find it!

Jul 29, 2012, 2:38pm Top

Hi Valerie, too much here for me to catch up on, so I'll just wish you a good day this time.

Jul 29, 2012, 10:26pm Top

Your trip sounds fabulous! Did you get pics of the mountains?

We stopped in Canmore on our way to Banff in 1999. It was our first taste of sterotype Canadians. Accents, EHs, guys in hockey sweaters, Aero bars... like they knew we were coming!! None of that in Banff-- too touristy (except for the moose wandering through town, though he had suspiciously perfect timing, hmmm). :) But I loved the mountains and the weather and the atmosphere and everything. That was our honeymoon, and we told ourselves we'd go back again at some point. Still haven't made it but I'm hopeful.

Jul 29, 2012, 10:36pm Top

Stormdancer certainly sounds interesting - might have to give that one a try.

Jul 30, 2012, 4:32pm Top

Jolery - what an interesting Review on Stormdancer - I have to see if I can find it as well. I do like a little bit of Steampunk from time to time and this sound just great, with the japanes twist to it.

Your whitewater rafting indeed sounded like lots and lots of fun :D

Jul 31, 2012, 5:23pm Top

Best wishes with all of the prep prior to your friend's wedding. Hope the shower was fun! Oddly enough I was also at a shower on Sunday, for my little brother and his fiancee. Small world.

Jul 31, 2012, 10:49pm Top

Hi Paul. The overnight in Canmore was only for one night, but I know I totally sounded like a baby and made it sound a lot longer than that. :)
If you ever have a chance to swing by up north, Canmore and Banff are a must see. The mountains will take your breath away!

Hi Kerri. I don't read a lot of steampunk either, but this one was quite enjoyable. There were a couple that I've read that veered off into the realms of weird, but Stormdancer was enjoyable in that it was understandable!

Thanks for dropping byJim! I know right? Just the line Japanese steampunk perks my interest.

Nice seeing you around here Ilana. I know what you mean about having too much to catch up on. A few days away and I know I won't be able to actually read everything on everyone's thread. Will just have to skim and at least scope what books everyone has been reading.

Hi Kathy! I didn't actually get any pictures of the mountains but my friend sure did! I know that I totally take views like that for granted because they are practically in my backyard. But yes, Canmore and Banff are just great if we need a quick get away. You don't have Aero bars where you are from?? How about ketchup chips??

Add to the WL Mamie. You know you wanna. ;)

Hi drachenbraut23. Japanese steampunk is such an interesting twist on the typical steampunk so I was pretty stoked when I won this one from the ER list. I will definitely be keeping an eye out of the next book in the series. I hope you get a chance to read it one of these days... :)

Hi Micky! I am not surprise that you were at a shower on the same day. I feel like my summers are inundated with weddings or showers of some form. I think it is just the season of life we are in. The year I got married, there were 4 other couples that were getting married in my circle of friends. Crazy I tell you! Now, there aren't as many weddings, but lots of baby showers. ;)

One more week left and then life will finally slow down to a normal, healthy, and most importantly, manageable pace. Will try to catch up with everyone next week! Happy readings. :)

Jul 31, 2012, 11:05pm Top

I think we have ketchup chips at gas stations. Aero bars only at the "World Market" (along with Curly Wurlys, mmmm).

Edited: Jul 31, 2012, 11:12pm Top

#57 Haven by Kristi Cook
Source: Public Library
Genre: YA
Pages: 401
Rating: 3 Stars
Recommend: Mildly
. Be prepared for a Twilight meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer kind of book.
Books noted: Pride and Prejudice

Violet has always felt like an outcast, belonging neither here nor there. Everything changes the day she enrolls in a New York boarding school. Something is off and she can't quite figure out what it is until she discovers that everyone at the school shares the same powers she possesses. Now she is no longer an outsider, but just your everyday, average, run of the mill, freak. Life seems to have taken a turn for the better when a mysterious boy, a strange connection, and an unexplainable obsession threatens to turn a place where she finally feels safe into a living hell.

The Twilight series has opened the door to countless other copycat books since it's publication. The only problem is that most of these knockoffs essentially take what wasn't that great of a story to begin with and often times only make them worse. Anytime I read a book that has a teen vampire, or a werewolf, or both, my gag reflex is automatically engaged. Haven follows the same stereotypical formula of awkward girl meets hot, mysterious guy and they want to be together, but can't and the angst is literally oozing out of every sentence. There was nothing horrible about the book, but the bigger issue was that there was also nothing outstanding about it either. Recommended if you are in the mood for a Twilight fix.

Aug 1, 2012, 2:51pm Top

>164 jolerie: It's true, summers tend to be wedding season and I'm now in the age range where more of my friends are getting married. My brother gets married in a little over two weeks and then one of my very good friends gets married six weeks later so there's a lot of wedding-related discussions going on in my life right now. :)

>166 jolerie: Mmmm, I think if I'm in the mood for a Twilight fix, I'll just pick up Twilight. :P

Aug 1, 2012, 5:41pm Top

Just keeping up. Not a Twilight fan, so that one won't make it onto my list either...

I love mountains. Much more than beaches, I love mountains.. with streams and trees and maybe a waterfall or two.. sigh. Nice mind picture.

Aug 1, 2012, 6:32pm Top

Valerie - SWMBO mentioned yesterday that we should do Canada as well next year since it is next to the USA. When I checked again she did admit that geography was not quite as straightforward as that - I had Belle cut out the map of Malaysia and place it inside that of North America - she now accepts that to cover the whole of both might be a little optimistic. Canada certainly does appeal though and I have some firm friends over there already!

Aug 1, 2012, 7:27pm Top

Yikes, 86 messages behind. Like your take on the Twilight series and the knock-offs, Valerie. Make me smile. Although that Grey Shady trilogy certainly got me through June report cards in a timely manner!

#169 Paul, love your story of having your daughter put map of Malaysia inside that of NA. Ya, covering the continent in a couple of weeks might be a tad busier than you want to be on vacation, hehe!

Aug 1, 2012, 7:32pm Top

>145 jolerie: white water rafting and cliff jumping. What a fantastic bachelorette party. Beats silly games and humiliation stunts. I hope it was excellent fun!

Aug 1, 2012, 9:55pm Top

Hi, Valerie! I'm not a Twilight fan, either, so I'll skip that one, too.

white water rafting and cliff jumping.
You sure are adventurous!

Aug 1, 2012, 10:57pm Top

Hi Micky. I have to say the writing in this one was a tad better than Twilight. There were too many moments in the latter that I chuckled even though it was supposed to be a serious mood. Actually I find a lot of YA books have those "awkward" boy meets girl moments but I guess that comes with the territory. The whole world of guy girl relationships in high school are filled with those hang your head, what did I just say kind of embarrassment.

I was never much of a beach bum Kath so I am like you in that I would probably rather hike the mountains than sit on a beach. The only time I did that was on my honeymoon. Every once in a while it is nice to just veg out and do absolutely nothing... :)

Paul, I'm sure your Canadian fanclub would be ecstatic to be able to meet you in person. If not next year, then definitely some time soon. I can confidently say that you and the family will have a great time. :)

I know the feeling of trying to catch up Nancy! I hate to skim threads but sometimes, thats the best I can do if I ever plan on catching up and still have time to read books. :) Did you read the entire trilogy?

I couldn't agree with you more Megan. I would much rather do the rafting and cliff jumping over booze and boys in a bar. I'm pretty lucky that my close group of girlfriends share that same mentality! :)

I'm actually not that adventurous Terri. More that the bride enjoys those kind of thrill seeking ventures. As a bridesmaid, I can only grit my teeth, close my eyes, and hold on for dear life. It was a lot of fun and definitely better than your typical stagette!

Aug 1, 2012, 11:21pm Top

Oh, wow, off the shelf I LOVED the following: Never Let Me Go, The Handmaid's Tale, The Girl Who Played with Fire, Heart of Darkness, East of Eden. What a month you're in for!

Aug 1, 2012, 11:34pm Top

Some very good books in there, Valerie - and also some of the ones that I am hoping to get to myself. I always love seeing everyone's potential reads for the month - thanks for sharing!

Edited: Aug 3, 2012, 10:54pm Top

July Stats

Total books read: 11
Total Pages read: 4291

Fiction: 2
YA: 6
Children: 1
Historical: 1
Fantasy: 1

Female authors: 8
Male authors: 3

New to me authors: 8

Library: 5
OTS: 5
ER: 1

Happily Ever After just wasn't enough....

Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife by Linda Berdoll
Who says a story has to end with happily ever after. Marriage is just the beginning. A lot of bed romping and scandal between the sheets, but beware hardcore Austen fans, this one is probably not for you.
Just give me a little Twist baby!

Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff
A Japanese steampunk spinoff with a kick-butt heroine and intimidating mythical creatures. Sounds strange, but it works!

Favourite Reads:

The Giver by Lois Lowry
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

Aug 1, 2012, 11:52pm Top

Never Let Me Go is wonderful. And an excellent movie also. :)

Edited: Aug 2, 2012, 6:31am Top

You have some great reading ahead of you in August except for the Heart of Darkness thing. I hated it. It was too dense and flowery.

Aug 2, 2012, 6:59am Top

Valerie- That's a fantastic reading list for August. Gem after gem, several of my favorites. You and Mamie have some prime reading ahead of you. Enjoy and good luck.

Aug 2, 2012, 8:02am Top

Wow! that is some lost..
I wil look forward to seeing how you like them :)

Aug 2, 2012, 11:44am Top

Thanks Nancy! I am definitely looking forward to what I have lined up for August. Once crazy busy wedding season is done, I can hunker down and just enjoy some quality time with my babies. :)

No problem Mamie. It is always so much fun to see other people's list. It's nice when they are similar and just as nice when they are different because it just means more potential books to add to the ever growing WL!

Ooooh, I forgot about the movie, Kathy. Most of the time I will read the book first before I will watch the movie. In this case, I will probably do the same. Glad to hear the movie is worth watching!

I'll be interested to see what is my reaction to Heart of Darkness, Morphy. My track record with classics has not been the greatest so we will have to wait and see.

Thanks Mark! Having your seal of approval bodes well for my books. :)

Hi Kath! Yup, crazy, wonderfully long and ambitious list that I will not complete, but so much fun compiling them anyways!

Aug 2, 2012, 12:57pm Top

Your August OTS looks great, Valerie! Lots of ones that I've really liked on there. Happy Reading!

Aug 2, 2012, 1:36pm Top

Your rafting trips sounds like a good time! Nate and I did that on the Ottawa River a few years ago and I was terrified that I would get flipped off of the raft as I sink instead of swim. Thankfully our raft didn't flip but we got to laugh at the other raft that was with us as they did flip

Is the wedding this weekend? Hope you have a great time and wishing good weather for the bride and groom!

Aug 2, 2012, 1:50pm Top

Thanks Joe! I'm so looking forward to August it's not even funny.

It was a lot of fun Chelle! You wouldn't think it would be such a work out but my whole body was so sore the day after. Gives me a totally new appreciation for the guides and people who do this regularly! They are so, so fit!
Yup, the wedding is this Sunday so after that, hopefully things will go back to normal. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I don't end up getting sick after all this because that would SUCK.

Aug 2, 2012, 2:21pm Top

I'm with Morphy on Heart of Darkness. Patooey, I say.

Aug 2, 2012, 4:09pm Top

Amber, now you really make me want to read the book to see which side of the fence I fall on. What didn't you like about it?

Aug 2, 2012, 4:22pm Top

It just seemed so, well, pointless. And the writing was, for me at least, terrible.

Aug 2, 2012, 5:16pm Top

Really looking forward to your thoughts on Never Let Me Go. I read the book after seeing the film trailer and then hunted down the film. Both are really good, imo! Have fun with all things wedding this weekend. Good thing it's a long weekend. :)

Aug 2, 2012, 6:18pm Top

Will WL The Giver after having a little look at it. Thanks!

Aug 3, 2012, 12:25am Top

Hmmm...well now I definitely plan on reading it this month, Amber.

Yeah, I know Micky! The long weekend is probably my biggest saving grace this week. I am so going to just veg after this round of intense activities. Looking forward to fall, and then winter, and then dare I say, Christmas!!

Megan, check it out and then read it. It's a gooder! :)

Aug 3, 2012, 7:39am Top

The Giver.. also on my please read me soon shelf...

Aug 3, 2012, 2:18pm Top

#58 Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool
Source: Public Library
Genre: Children
Pages: 342
Rating: 4 Stars
Recommend: Very, very much so!

Books noted: Moby Dick

But the woman, the mother, she watches, she waits, she loves. And she bears the weight of that love. She bears the loss of her son to war. She bears the story of Manifest. When everyone else is crushed by it, by the loss, the pain. When no one else can bear to remember. She is the keeper of the story. Until someone who needs to hear it comes along. When it will be time to make it known. To manifest. That's what a diviner does.

After a series of unfortunate events, Abilene Tucker is sent packing to live in her father's hometown of Manifest, Kansas for the summer. In searching for her father's footprints, she learns about the town's history and it's people. The stories tell her nothing about her father and at the same time everything about her father. The last thing she expected to find was a place to belong and yet at the end of her adventures, a home she will find, and town filled with family she could call her own.

Moon Over Manifest is a wonderful story that invokes a warm feeling of nostalgia. Abilene is a curious child who discovers that the world is not what it seems, and the people that fill the her world are more than just a name attached to a face. All people have stories and histories; some choose to share it with the world while others carry it like a burden on their backs. Through Abilene's eyes, we recall memories of summer adventures, of discovering the mysteries of our world, and ultimately, of growing up. Heartily recommended.

Aug 3, 2012, 2:20pm Top

Kath, I won't tell you to read the book because then you might rebel and then delaying reading it! I'll just let the book quietly nudge you in the right direction. :)

Aug 3, 2012, 5:25pm Top

>193 jolerie: Nice review, Valerie. It earned a thumb from me. :)

Aug 3, 2012, 7:03pm Top

Thanks for the thumb Micky!

On a personal note, my son has recently learned that his nose is a great place to try to hide things. The other morning he shredded up some styrofoam into little pieces and proceeded to stick them up his nose. The only problem? He didn't know how to get them out afterwards. I was watching this from the side with amusement and was just waiting for the eventual..."Mama! Helllll peeese" Mommy to the rescue! :)
On the reading front, after all these years and two attempts to read East of Eden, I am hoping that the third time is the charm. I rarely, if ever, abandon a book but for some reason the two times that I've read East of Eden, something newer and shinier was able to distract me from finishing it. I'm only a couple chapters in, but it's shaping up to be an epic and sweeping saga.

Aug 3, 2012, 7:19pm Top

Hi Valerie, I've caught up - for now. Some great discussions on your thread. All that library love and here's me vowing not to use the library this month and instead dedicate myself to reading totally off my shelves.

Both The Giver and Moon Over Manifest are on my wishlist, but will have to wait as I am also trying not to buy any books this month either.

We'll see how long I can keep to my plans.

Aug 3, 2012, 7:28pm Top

"my son has recently learned that his nose is a great place to try to hide things." LOL. That earned my best chuckle of the day! After dealing with this heat, I could use it.

Aug 3, 2012, 8:38pm Top

I'm another one chucking over your son's new discovery, Valerie : ). Hope you will enjoy East of Eden, and that, as you say, third time proves to be the charm.

Aug 3, 2012, 10:39pm Top

Glad to see you back and around the threads, Judy! I know what you mean. Library love often leads to guilt over all the unread books still sitting around my shelves. But when I think about all the money I'v saved by borrowing the books from the library instead of buying them, the guilt is assuaged a bit.
I think you will enjoy both The Giver and Moon Over Manifest when you get the chance to read them!

Mark, I'm sorry to hear about the heat. I can't imagine how uncomfortable you guys must be feeling. If my son's little quirky habits can bring a smile to your hot, hot, day, then I guess it's another benefit I can add to his exploratory adventures. :)

Hi Nancy! I'm glad it brought a smile to your face. It sure gave me a chuckle as well to see how a moment of pure delight could turn into sheer panic in a blink of an eye. So far I'm quite enjoying EoE and will be glad to finally be able to mark this one as completed. :)

Aug 3, 2012, 10:58pm Top

>196 jolerie: uh oh. My brother stuck a pencil up his nose as a little kid, and had to have the formerly-attached rubber (eraser) removed by a doctor! Your little monkey will have to kick that habit to the curb I think :)

Aug 3, 2012, 11:22pm Top

Hi Valerie - Great reading planned for August! I liked Never Let Me Go a lot too and finally saw the movie last weekend, which was great as well. I hope to read more by him soon - probably The Remains of the Day.

Aug 4, 2012, 12:40am Top

Megan, the things we do as children right? Definitely gotta keep an eye on this one as he gets more and more curious and more and more adventurous. Otherwise he might pull a stunt like, oh say, eating a bar of soap, or trying to swallow a penny, both of which I am guilty of....

Thanks for the vote Kerri. I will put that on my priority list to read this month since so many people have given it such positive comments. And then, maybe I can watch the movie afterwards. This will be the first Ishiguro book that I read so keeping my fingers crossed that I enjoy it!

Aug 4, 2012, 1:30am Top

Hi Valerie - What you wrote about Hosseini in the Kite Runner review is so true - have only read A Thousand Splendid Suns but it's still "with" me in a strange way. Very powerful and universal themes he explores.

Getting good info on new YA-fiction here. Great.

And some good classics lined up for august. I liked Wells' Moreau and Carrolls Wonderland.

Aug 4, 2012, 7:27am Top

Valerie, you certainly were more sanguine about the stuff-up-the-nose incident that I would have been! I tend to panic about those sorts of things before Charlie does (although so far we've avoided any nose disasters).

Aug 4, 2012, 8:17am Top

OMG!! Thank goodness Will has not tried the up-the-nose trick!

Aug 4, 2012, 8:22am Top

Oh my... That is a great review!I have got to give it a try, I think...
Have to find it..

As for noses.. yeah.. Adam, ( now about to turn 40!!!!!!! ack!) put a corn kernal up there once, and a balloon bit another time. Interestingly ( ?) they were both yellow. He was never one to fuss with his nose, so I have no idea why, but there ya go! He was around 1 year-ish both times.

Aug 4, 2012, 9:41am Top

Our now grown up kids never figured out that their noses could be used for hiding things, thank goodness. If they use them that way now, it's their problem.

As Mark knows, Val, I'm not a fan of East of Eden, and it actually turned me off to reading Steinbeck for a long time. So your being distracted a couple of times by shinier books seems mild to me. But I'm distinctly in the minority on that one, so I hope you do enjoy it this time around.

I did like The Giver a lot, and Moon over Manifest was good, too.

Aug 4, 2012, 10:58am Top

Ugh! I couldn't find you, Valerie, because apparently when I was using my iTouch everyday, my big ole fingers touched the "ignore topic" x. All's corrected now and I'll be back to visiting your thread on a regular basis. Now must scroll through everything I've missed. Hope you have great plans for the weekend!

Aug 4, 2012, 4:15pm Top

>196 jolerie: Oh the joys of toddlers. :) Hope all the wedding stuff this weekend goes smoothly.

Aug 4, 2012, 4:19pm Top

What is it with foam and noses?

I did the same thing at about the same age except it needed a doctor to get it out I had shoved it up so high.

Aug 4, 2012, 6:34pm Top

Valerie- I loved The Giver. Hugs to you. I'm sending wonderful memories to you. Do you like sledding? I think she intended for this to be a stand-alone, so it will be interesting to see how the other books work.
I also plan to start Graceling soon, many LT pals get credit for that one but I know you are in there too!

Aug 4, 2012, 8:57pm Top

I'm so glad you liked Moon Over Manifest. It is one of my favorite Newberys!

Aug 5, 2012, 8:58am Top

That is how I lost you, Lynda.. I seem to do it regularly with iPad.
And Valerie.. I will definitely be reading Moon Over Manifest!

Aug 5, 2012, 10:21am Top

Hi Valerie. I've heard stories from my friends about what their little monkeys put up their noses - I hope nothing gets stuck!

Aug 5, 2012, 11:46am Top

uh oh! Hopefully he doesn't stick anything bigger up his nose!

Hope you are having a great time at the wedding today! Can't wait to see some pictures, hint hint! :)

Aug 5, 2012, 9:16pm Top

All caught up here! Um...about the nose thing, be careful. Craig has had patients have to have stuff surgically removed from their nose. Also, years ago a little boy that I used to babysit for stuffed Fruit Loops up his nose so far that they had to take him to the ER to get them out (not while I was watching him, just to clarify).

Nice review of Moon Over Manifest - I loved that book. My daughter Birdy really liked it, too.

Aug 5, 2012, 10:58pm Top

Hi Valerie.
I simply cannot start a conversation about things we used to get up to as kids. Well, Ok, seeing as you asked....
My sister once tried to pass off a glass of something hideous as "mellow Yellow" a yellow soft drink. It involved some serious aim issues, and a huge telling off from our mum. haha, I would be so cross if my little monkeys were involved in something like that. At the time is seemed so.....funny.....the intended recipient was our older cousin who was always bossing us around. I dont think she thought it too funny.

Aug 11, 2012, 1:36am Top

Thanks to Carsten, Amber, Brit, Kath, Joe, Lynda, Micky, Morphy, Mark, Linda, Heather, Chelle, Mamie, and Megan for keeping my thread all nice and warm!

Thanks Carsent! I think if you liked A Thousand Splendid Suns, then The Kite Runner will not disappoint you. I did prefer the former over the latter but both books were haunting and will stick with me for a very long time.

Amber, I think I would have panicked if the styrofoam was any bigger as I imagine it would have been more tightly lodged up there, so I'm relieved that it was more of a comical situation than worrisome. Just gotta keep a closer eye on my little one here on out.

Hi Brit. Let's hope it stays that way. :) I don't really know what it is with boys and sticking things up their nose or into their mouths...

Kath, I hope you do get a chance to read Moon Over Manifest and will enjoy it as much as I did. That's sweet that you still remember so clearly the different items that Adam has placed up his nose. I imagine years down the road, when Caleb is a grown man, I'm sure he will appreciate me sharing these wonderful stories about him. :)

Joe, I think I can see how EoE may have turned you off from Steinbeck. There are moments that I feel like I'm being dragged along, but then there are some moments where I feel totally immersed so it will be interesting to see what I think about it when I'm all done with it. One thing I know for sure is that it probably wont' make my favourite list of the year, but I'm not against trying his other books.

No worries Lynda! I haven't been around for several months so accidental x'ing makes total sense. I am just glad you found me again. I always enjoy your company and your comments! :)

Micky, I am all done with wedding things this year and can breathe a huge sigh of relief. I hope you made it back from Vegas in one piece. ;)

Yikes, Morphy! I guess I should count it a blessing that no doctor was involved!

Mark, no need to thanks my friend! I am just so glad that you enjoyed the book. I hope you enjoy Graceling when you get a chance to read it. Yes, sledding is lots of fun, but I don't think my first experience can compare to the magic that Lowry paints. :)

Aug 11, 2012, 1:40am Top

OK, I am way behind once again. I am going to have to give Stormdancer a go one of these days. It sounds like a book I would really like. Thanks for the recommendation, Valerie!

Edited: Aug 11, 2012, 1:47am Top

Linda, I can definitely see why it is one of your favourites and also a Newbery! A very well and deserving accolade for a great book.

Hi Heather! Yes, we were lucky that nothing serious came of it this time. I'll just chalk it up to a very curious toddler and make sure I keep a hawk eye watch on the little guy for the next little bit. :)

Thanks Chelle! I'm so going to enjoy the relative peace and quiet that hopefully comes with the completion of the wedding. So excited for you and Nate as the date gets closer and closer! Funny, I totally didn't take any pictures the day of, but hopefully the photographer was able to snag a couple of good ones.

Hi Mamie. In retrospect I am very glad it didn't turn out to be anything serious now that I'm hearing all these stories of doctors and ER involvement. Turns out that has been the only instance of him exploring his nose the last little bit so hopefully that phase is over and done with. :)

Megan, too funny! There are things we did as children, or remember doing as children that I'm sure we secretly hope and pray to the gods that be that our children don't discover! I shudder at some of the things my brother and I did when we were kids, things that my parents were aware of and plenty that they had no clue happened! ;)

Edited: Aug 11, 2012, 1:48am Top

Hi Stasia! No worries about catching up. I'm WAY behind myself after a couple of days away from LT so I figure I might as well just start fresh. I do hope you enjoy Stormdancer when you get a chance to retrieve it from the black hole. ;)

Aug 11, 2012, 1:55am Top

#222: Unfortunately the local library is not providing any help in retrieving the book as they do not have it!

Aug 11, 2012, 1:56am Top

Valerie, I'm waaaaaay behind and you're probably on the verge of starting a new thread......

I'm too sleepy to give your thread a real read, but wanted to stop by and say hello!

Aug 11, 2012, 1:58am Top

Stasia, I won the book from ER so I don't even think it's on sale at the stores yet, so it would make sense that your library doesn't carry it....yet. One day, hopefully!

No worries, Ellen. I am skimming a lot of the threads as well as I try to catch up with everyone. So glad to have you here though! :)

Aug 11, 2012, 2:02am Top

#225: That could explain it! I guess I will just have to hope that the local library decides to purchase it soon.

Aug 11, 2012, 4:06am Top

Hahaha Megans story reminds me of how when we were boys we used to have competitions to she who could pee the highest up the school wall. This was strictly forbidden at school of course and I remember getting away scot free from one such prank and my brother being blamed in a case of mistaken identity. It is a good job that the identification was done from behind with him not being circumcised an all.
Have a lovely weekend Valerie.

Aug 11, 2012, 6:34am Top

Stopping by to say hi, Valerie! I briefly caught up on some of your thread. Like you, I've been trying to use my library more often. As for your book about the mormons, of all things there was an interview of a woman who left the faith and then came back to it - I ordered a second hand copy after seeing it on TV. It's called The Book of Mormon Girl: A Memoir of an American Faith . I'm still waiting for it to come in the mail -but I will let you know if I think it is somewhat balanced at all.

I was just out earlier this evening browsing at Chapters........ oh the books I had to resist!:)

Aug 11, 2012, 7:39am Top

Hi Valerie, just stopping by to wish you a happy weekend! Any fun plans?

Edited: Aug 11, 2012, 8:05am Top

I have Moon Over Manifest sitting on my short stack right now!
I have one or two to read first... but will read it soon .. hopefully.

Hmmm stunts as kids? The only thing I can remember is when I was about 10..
we lived across the street from the offices of a steel company ....and its parking lot.
We had an upstairs apartment for a while, and it had a wall around it, so you couldn't see in.
We used to get dried beans in boxes of "free food " ( it was govt. surplus and some of it was mighty unappetizing, but it was food. The rice was good. The canned meat as a little scary) we qualified for. My sister and I used straws to blow them across at the people coming and going. It was hilarious at the time. :P

Oh well.. no one's perfect, least of all me !

Happy weekend!

Aug 11, 2012, 8:43am Top

Valerie - it's taking me a while to catch up on threads but I'm proud of my valiant efforts. This is one gregarious and oh so interesting group .. not that I'm complaining, but it means I don't always have time to check in on all the threads I want in a single sitting. Still, the comforting thing about LT is that I never have to worry that I'll miss anything because I can always pop in whenever I have time and mosey through at my own pace..... a tortoise-like one.

Aug 11, 2012, 11:12am Top

Waving hello - and like you - starting here :)

Aug 11, 2012, 12:48pm Top

Stasia, I hope so too! Either that, or I could just send you my copy of the book. :)

Ahhh, wonderful story Paul! I guess those are the kind of shenanigans that I will have to look forward to in the future. I know my SIL probably has lots of those kind of stories to share already as she is just about to give birth to her 4th child and the 4th son to boot.

Hi Deb! Yes, I am very proud of our local library and have been milking it for all its worth since I started last year. The only down side is all the books that are already on my shelves and have been there for so long have even longer to wait till I get a chance to read them.
I actually haven't been so tempted to buy my books at Chapters when I discovered how much cheaper Costco has them and also how easy it is to get them at bookdespository.com (no shipping fees!) Now I only buys them at Chapters when I can maximize my plum points, otherwise it's just too hard on the wallet to buy books at full price when I can get them for so much cheaper elsewhere.

Thanks for dropping by Lynda! Fun plans? I think the most fun I'm going to have is reading my books and watching the end of the Olympics. I am aiming for a nice and quiet rest of my August as we are heading to the States at the beginning of September. :) I hope you are having an awesome weekend!

Hahaha, Kath! You had me chuckling with that story because it reminds me so much of one thing my brother and I used to do as kids. Not the greatest reflection of our moral character, but it was funny nonetheless. When we grew up in Vancouver, our neighbours had this huge cherry tree that grew in their front yard. Of course, those ruby red temptations called to us each time we walked by, so one day a couple of friend, my brother, and I included decided we just had to taste those cherries. Anyways, long story short, we ended up running for our lives with an angry lady chasing a broom after us and cherries spilling from the impromptu pouches we made with our shirts. Ahhh, the memories...

I know how you feel Carol as each day that I'm away, I feel like it's a mini marathon to try to catch up with everyone. Like you, I couldn't agree more with how great this group is and how worth the effort it is to stay up to date with everyone. Lots of great books and even better book discussions so that's my motivation to come back each time. :)

Good call, Jenn. When swamped, just start fresh! :)

Watching my son discover and explore the world around him, and hearing all your stories about growing up totally has me feeling nostalgic about the memories of growing up with my brother! We did our share of completely random child play, of piling our blankets in the corner of the bed and pretending that we were escaping killer sharks, to throwing snowballs from our balcony to see who could throw it the furthest when our mom was fast asleep, and playing badminton in our back alley till it was so dark we couldn't even see the birdie until it hit us in the head. One fond memory involved my brother boasting about how he could catch his own spit. In retrospect, I really should have seen this coming when I said I didn't believe him which set him up on a quest to prove me wrong! In the end, I was the factor that made the whole bet that much more interesting when he decided to draw out his spit as long as possible and try to catch it back in his mouth. To my horror the result was his drawn out spit landed on my face and he obviously lost the bet, not that he really cared at that point since he was rolling on the floor, holding his stomach, and laughing till it hurt.

Aug 11, 2012, 3:04pm Top

Ok, all caught up here now, Valerie. Whew! Great stories everyone!

Aug 11, 2012, 3:17pm Top

Hi Valerie, I'm also trying to speed read and catch up. Great stories about growing up, I had an older sister and younger brother and we got into so much trouble together. Somehow, being the middle child seem to make me the instigator! I can't tell you how much time I spent in my room as punishment, of course as long as I had a book or two to read I never felt I was being punished.

Aug 11, 2012, 5:23pm Top

>219 jolerie: Yup, back in one piece. Now have to prep for my little brother's wedding on Friday. :)

Aug 11, 2012, 7:23pm Top

Valerie- Hope you are having a great weekend. I'm well into Graceling right now and it's been a lot of fun. A perfect summer diversion.

Aug 11, 2012, 9:30pm Top

Valerie, your thread was so long on unread messages when I got back last week that I put off reading it--more fool I because now I had more than twice as many to read (all 235)! But what interesting discussion and several book bullets I found on it.

Aug 12, 2012, 2:28am Top

*waving* at Valerie - love the story of you and your brother!

Aug 12, 2012, 8:06am Top

Just keeping up so you don't get away from me again.. hopefully...

Edited: Aug 12, 2012, 3:10pm Top

Big waves to Mamie! Thanks for dropping by. I'm sure you must have tonnes of stories about your children and the "fun" they got into as they were growing up. :)

Hi Judy! It's funny because from all the experiences I heard from friends who were the middle child, they were either really quiet and never got into trouble, or were the really rebellious ones that gave their parents premature grey hairs. I'm sure you were a sweet gal who just liked to have some fun here and there. ;)

Ooooh, so exciting Micky. Is there anything specific you are doing in the wedding?

Hi Mark! I hope you are having a great weekend as well. Yes, Graceling is a lot of fun. It isn't brilliant writing, but perfect as a summer read. I actually liked Fire more so give that one a chance when you have the time.

Hi Roni! Thanks for effort of catching up. I know how it feels when that unread number just gets out of the control. I'm glad at least you got some book bullets for all the work of reading through the thread. :)

Thanks Stasia. I do have such fond memories of growing up with my brother, so it's kinda of sad that we don't get to see each other very often now that I'm married and living in a different city.

I'll try my best to remain within sight, Kath. ;)


So my husband and Caleb went out this morning for lunch with some friends. I am at home and I get a text from him that they have been rear ended. Caleb is ok and the car is drivable, but I am on pins and needles waiting for them to get home....

Aug 12, 2012, 3:21pm Top

Oh noooo. Give the "boys" a big hug when they get home. It's always scary to have an accident when the precious cargo of a child is on board. Your Sunday will get better when they are home. Glad they are okay and that the car is drivable.

Aug 12, 2012, 5:41pm Top

>241 jolerie: I'm in charge of the signing book and I will be singing while everyone signs the register. :)

Sorry to hear about the fender bender for your boys. Hopefully no one has any ill effects and the repairs are all minor. *fingers crossed*

Aug 12, 2012, 6:26pm Top

#241 Eep - glad their both ok, hope the repairs aren't too expensive.

Aug 12, 2012, 6:45pm Top

Just dropping in to say Hi! Your August reading plans look great - I don't know any of the library options you've listed, but among the others, Handmaid's Tale, Sea of Poppies and Never Let Me Go are all ones I'd highly recommend - though very different from each other!

Sorry to hear about the car accident, hope they got home safely and nothing too much in the way of damage to person (most important) or property.

Edited: Aug 12, 2012, 6:53pm Top

Thanks for the well wishes Donna, Micky, Heather, and Genny!

Yes, thankfully everyone is okay. But it looks like our back fender will have to be completely replaced. Here is the hiccup. The gentleman who rear ended us wants to settle outside of insurance and normally we would be more than okay with that doing that since it's less of a hassle, but, and it is a huge BUT - he didn't have his license on him at the scene of the accident. After talking to him on the phone when my husband got home, we found out that he actually had his license suspended (we don't know the reason why), and he was driving illegally. So now we feel that we should really go through insurance and file a police report as he obviously as demonstrated that he is not a responsible driver, but he is pleading with us to settle outside of insurance (for obvious reasons). Thankfully both, husband and child are okay, but we now have to decide what to do with this situation - to file or not to file....

Aug 12, 2012, 8:14pm Top

I would file, absolutely. This feels not right, so.. yeah...I would file.
Glad they are okay... but take it from me things can turn up later...

Aug 12, 2012, 8:31pm Top

Tough one Valerie - without looking the guy in the eyeballs it is difficult to make the judgement on whether he is deserving of being cut some slack. I shudder to think what would have happened had it been a little more serious. Of course one thing to consider is that if you file a report you will be paying for the cost of repairs yourself unless or you lose your no claims bonuses unless and until you were able to sue him through the civils courts. Personally I wouldn't want that hassle not if he then cannot pay anyways and you have to bankrupt the guy to get no money.

Aug 12, 2012, 8:55pm Top

I'm so glad you and your family are ok. Car accidents are scary things indeed.

Aug 12, 2012, 10:11pm Top

Kath, you are probably right about that and we are leaning more towards filing it just so it's clear and done with. No loose strings attached and with things like that, I just want them dealt with and we can move on.

Thanks Paul! Whenever situations like this come up, the first thing I always think of is how would I feel if I were in this other person's shoes. That always makes me want to extend the benefit of the doubt and some grace if possible. But upon closer thought and discussions with my husband, we realized that we would NEVER be in this man's shoes. We would never rack up enough demerits that we would lose our license and then would NEVER consider driving around once the license was revoked! In this case, even if we wanted to cut him some slack, we would be breaking the law while doing that and so maybe the answers pretty clear, whether we like it or not.

Thanks for the thoughts Linda especially with all that is on your plate right now. I appreciate the visit, my friend! :)

Edited: Aug 12, 2012, 10:26pm Top

Finally found you Valerie but I will not even try to catch up but simply start from here. I did see mention of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns. I read both books back in the early 2000s and remember parts of both vividly. The scene in ATSS where he nails the plywood over the window and traps her and her child in that suffocating attic will stay with me forever. And of course that very vivid scene in TKR where the rape takes place. Hosseini just has an uncanny ability to write descriptive paragraphs like no one else. I wish he'd publish a third book. It's been a while now after publishing two very close together.

ETA sorry to hear about the accident. I would definitely file a police report and go through your insurance. This guy sounds a bit shady.

Edited: Aug 13, 2012, 12:31am Top

#59 East of Eden by John Steinbeck
Source: OTS
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 601
Rating: 3.25*
Recommend: Mildly as I don't think this will go down as my favourite Steinbeck book

Books noted: Alice in Wonderland, The Principles of Psychology, Chatterbox, World Almanac, Inferno, The Winning of Barbara Worth, The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant

We have only one story. All novels, all poetry, are built on the never ending contest in ourselves of good and evil. And it occurs to me that evil must constantly respawn, while good, while virtue, is immortal. Vice has always a new fresh young face, while virtue is venerable as nothing else in the world is.

The Trasks and the Hamiltons are two families that have settled down in the Salinas Valley of Northern California. Two very different families, with very different histories and beginnings will share a universal story of love, forgiveness, betrayal, and how perhaps we are all doomed to reap the mistakes of our forefathers.

East of Eden was an ambitious culmination of storytelling. In the 600 plus pages is an epic saga about families and the inner darkness that plagues a certain portion of our human nature. Perhaps in his attempt to create this magnificent world, the actual stories of the people that inhabit that world was a bit lost. Characters without meaningful stories are like extras that abound between the pages with nothing to root them to the actual journey. Without the connection with the people, you have a vast land that ends up feeling impersonal and uninhabited. I appreciate the genius of Steinbeck, but reserve the hesitation to fall in love with his writing this time around.

Aug 12, 2012, 10:53pm Top

Hi Bonnie! You slipped in there while I was posting my review of EoE. Good call about catching up as I would probably do the same. :)
I too wish Hosseini would write another book as well as he is probably one of the few authors that I will automatically buy since he has proven to me that he can write!

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Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2012

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