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Cataluna's 100 Books in 2009 Challenge

100 Books in 2009 Challenge

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1cataluna
Edited: Dec 12, 2009, 8:18am Top

I was going to join the 50 in 2009 group, but I've nearly read that so far this year. Yay me! Plus, I'm not doing uni next semester, so more time for me. I've just copied this from my blog, so sorry if I've got naughty words or tangents - it' happens sometimes :)

1. The Graduate by Charles Webb - I've been meaning to read this for donkey's and I thought new year, why not start with something that's been on my list since Adam was boy, plus the follow up "Home School" was just released. Hmmm...I didn't mind it but the character of Ben just shit me. Whiny, self involved, me me me ugh - grow up and realise it's not all about you. Some scenes I just found painful to read, the scuba suit bit comes to mind here. The way Ben talks to Elaine, personally I'd be smacking him upside the head! I haven't seen the movie either, don't know if I will now.

2. Like a Charm edited by Karin Slaughter - This was a compilation of quirky short stories, the only common point is a charm bracelet. I didn't mind this, all of the stories are quite dark & most of them explict (not for the Betty Neels fans), beginning with a Native American story of how the braclet came about and ending in (if your an optimist), a redemptive fashion that sees the end of the bad luck bracelet.

3. Quentins by Maeve Binchy - Do not get me started - damn my need to finish everything I read but this book shit me from start to end. I was cringing in places. The main character, Ella, has an affair with a married man, the affair ends very badly. The character is childish in her mentality when it comes to the object of her love (who's name escapes me at present), and things don't get much better when he's out of the picture. I pretty much guessed what was going to happen as soon as I started reading and the ending was crap, so much so that I was overheard uttering - DON his name's Don - sorry tangent, 'Thank FUCK for that!"

4. Carry Me Down by M.J. Hyland - Our first book club book for the year. I did enjoy it and it was easy to read but I'm still all a little huh? A couple points in the book had me cringing (namely the kittens, when the school bully gets hers and the end bit with the mum), but I do think it fell a little short, it wasn't fantastic, just sort of slow & stifiling. It was real in the sense that it portrayed everyday life in the boringest of forms. It certainly would have been a totally different book seen through the eyes of one of the other characters, perhaps darker if told by the mum.

5. 19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult - This was our book club title for Feb. I enjoyed it (as much as one can when it's all bout multiple murder). Picoult continues to write about events that happen in reality and sadly what's more real than a school shooting. I quite like the style of this book, it's told from Peter (shooter), Josie (shootee & Peter's friend from childhood), Lacy (Peter's Mum) & Alex (Josie's mum & Judge of the town of Stirling). There are a few other pov, but they are the main ones. It also goes back and forth through time, to highlight important events in Peter's childhood. It delves into why Peter chose a school shooting to deal with his bullies and some of the scenes where Peter is bullied are excruciating to read, you really feel for the character even though he's killed 10 kids. It's interesting to read the book from his pov and makes you ask, is that why these shooting's happen in real life? I'm not condoning the mass killing of bullies, I just think that it puts into perspective why these events happen. It highlights the real need for something to be done about bullying, rather than trying to sweep it under the rug or making light of a situation. I like Jodi's books in general, I also read another one of her books this month, it's up next. Plus seriously - how can you not love a book that mentions The Wiggles :)

6. Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult - This one is about an Amish girl that is put on trial for murdering her baby. I liked this one too, Picoult again uses the 'in the past' tool again to tell the story of (forgive my mental blank, I can't remember her name), and how she met the father of her baby. The basic premise of the story is that as an Amish person wouldn't be capable of murder (which I don't buy), imo everyone is capable of murder, regardless - thankfully, the majority of us never have to cross that moral dilemma. KATIE!! That's her name, I'm slow I know and there's tangents - it's all part of my charm :) Overall, it's a good story, I liked it and I'm slowly working my way through Jodi Picoult's books.

7. Dead Connection - Alafair Burke - Nasty murdery thrillery book, which I really enjoyed, this is the first I've read of this author and I'm so reading more!! There is also no way I'm ever joinging an online dating service now - which in the book is how the killer finds his victims. Kinda does for dating service, what Wolf Creek did for backpackers. lol. Tight little cop drama it was, I liked the authors style, apparently this got mixed reviews as it moved away from her Samantha Kincaid series, but meh I liked it anyway. The other weird thing (not really weird - just an interesting fact), Alafair Burke is James Lee Burke's daughter. Now I've blogged about writer's offspring picking up the pen before - I'm very sceptical of their 'talent'. I don't know if it didn't effect my judgement, just because I didn't realise 'til after I'd finished, or if it was actually good on it's own, but either way I liked it.

8. Warnings of Gales by Annie Sauders - This was a playaway and not something I'd normally read, it's about 3 women who take their children on a beach holiday, sans husbands (for two of them), except on weekends. Two of the ladies have never met before and their differing personalities and parenting styles clash with cringeworthy yet funny results. I didn't mind this, but it didn't have me banging down the door at work to get another title from Saunders.

9. Generation Dead by Daniel Waters - This book was great, it was a nice take on teen romance with a zombie angle and really who doesn't love a good zombie story. I'll keep this short here cause I've done a review for this, which I need to add, patience gentle reader, one can't rush a lady :)

10. Blindsighted by Karin Slaughter - This is the 2nd or 3rd book I read of Slaughters and I really enjoy her writing. The stories are all rather grusome, but she has lovely flawed characters which make you want to keep reading. She has 3 reoccuring characters, Sarah and Geoffrey (medical examiner and police chief respectively), they have been married divorced and are back together again and then there's Lori (I wanna say Lori, it might not be that tho), and she is a detective that works with Geoffrey, her sister is murdered in this book. I did managed to guess who the killer was, but it didn't detract from the story, I happily kept on reading and and waiting for the next in the series. I guess you could say she is similar to Patricia Cornwell and Kathy Reichs.

11. Pack Challenge by Shelly Laurenston - This was fantastic, I hadn't read any of her work before and got this and the next in the series, when I was in Melbourne and one of the greatest bookshops on earth, Rendezvous! They have sexy books! YAY! Anyway, Sarah is a half human half wolf, she just don't know it yet. But she's about to find out - all with the help of Alpha dog Zach. This was hilarious, the interaction between her and her mates (they get their own books), and with Zach and his pack. Brillo I say, I ended up reading this on the way home from Melbourne.

12. Go Fetch by Shelly Laurenston - This is the 2nd book in the Magnus series of books and was equally fantastic, pretty much from me putting the 1st book away to me getting the next one out was a minute, I just wanted to keep reading. This time around the story centers on Miki, Sarah's crazy weapon loving friend from Pack Challenge, I had to keep trying to be quite cause I was laughing so hard while reading these. Conall is a shape-shifting Viking that hangs with Zach and the Magnus pack, but he's sets his sights on Miki and won't take no for an answer, with hilarious results. Miki drugs him, she handcuffs him and has her wild way with him when she comes to her senses. I just can't wait for the next one 'Here Kitty Kitty, which is Angelina's story. I want it like yesterday!

13. Pagan Stone by Nora Roberts - This is the last in the Sign of Seven trilogy and ties everything together nicely, bringing the last couple together. The final battle takes place and if they win the Hollow will finally be safe from the evil that has plagued it since the boys 10th birthdays. If they lose - it's Hell on earth - literally. I don't mind a bit of Nora, now and again. I've really only read a couple of her books, the Irish vampire trilogy and the 3 sisters island witchy trilogy, which I really enjoyed. I've read a couple of her stand alone titles and seen a few of the books that've been made into movies - they are pure gold.

14. The Stolen Child by Keith Donohue - This was our March book club title, this has been one of my fave books this year, it's the story of a group of changelings and how they go about stealing children to replace and how they cope with the changes that time brings to the world. It was beautifully written and I really enjoyed reading it although it was quiet a sad book.

There we go - my first 14, I'll have to get cracking and add the rest chop chop.

2rainpebble
Jul 1, 2009, 7:28am Top

Welcome to LT. I hope you are enjoying yourself here.
You have yourself quite a list going already. Good luck with your challenge. There are a lot of great folks here at the 100 book challenge. Good luck and I will see you on here later. I think I had better go to bed at some point here.
Belva

3cataluna
Jul 5, 2009, 10:43pm Top

Looking forward to making the 100, trying to read genres that I wouldn't normally read, so any suggestions are welcome.
Cathy.

4wookiebender
Jul 6, 2009, 1:39am Top

Hi Cataluna, welcome aboard! Zombie romance, now that's a new genre to me. :)

5cataluna
Jul 6, 2009, 3:47am Top

It was actually quite good, fingers crossed the follow up is well written. I've also got Pride & Prejudice & Zombies to read, apparently along with vampires zombies are 'in'.

6wookiebender
Jul 6, 2009, 5:42am Top

I did read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies a few weeks ago, so I look forward to your review here. :) If you're going down the zombie path, I was very impressed with Max Brooks' World War Z. It's not fluffy zombie stuff (some is really quite scary), but is probably the best zombie book I've ever read.

Of course, considering I've just mentioned the only two zombie books I've ever read, this may not be considered to be such high praise. ;)

7meags222
Jul 6, 2009, 6:53pm Top

Cathy,
Just responding to your msg from my thread. I was reading over your thread and thought I'd respond here.
I went into the teaching profession and at this point (with no jobs available) I think I should have gone into library studies or something. haha. Anyhow, it looks like you got a good start. If you're looking for zombie/vampire books try The Strain by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan.

8cataluna
Edited: Dec 12, 2009, 8:24am Top

I was feeling all neglectful as I hadn't added anymore books yet, so here they all are in one big hit.

15. Poppy Shakespeare by Clare Allen - I didn't mind this, some of the writing annoyed me (or more so how one of the main characters 'N' talked). I was a bit slow getting into it, and I was just depressed by the time I finished this.

16. Mavrick by Lora Leigh. I was so excited when this came out, but I wasn't terribly impressed by it. The writing didn't seem as polished as her other novels, def. not the best in the Elite Ops series. Although it does have one of my all time fave lines in it - the main character is teased about his 'Mossad façade'.

17. Marley and Me by John Grogan - I was suprised by how much I did like this, I don't generally read this type of book, (it was our April book club title). The Marley stories are very cute, a few bringing back memories of the devient behaviour of our old dog, Sam.

18. Body Double by Tess Gerritsen - I've read this out of order of the series, but it didn't seem to impact on the storyline or my understanding. I enjoyed this, thought it was relatively fast paced and would read others in the series as well.

19. The Divide by Nicholas Evans - I love Evans, his style of writing, his stories are so emotive. Everytime I read one of his novels I want to move to Montana. This was quite a sad story, but ultimately redemptive. Deals with eco terrorism and family relationships.

20. The Watchmen by Robert Crais - This is another one that I've read out of order, this series has Joe Pike as the main character, rather than Elvis Cole. I laughed so hard, this was a great crime/thriller/action novel, still set in the PI world of his other novels. I'm not sure if I was supposed to find it so funny, but I've since read another of Crais' books and thought that was hilarious too.

Okay, I'm going to leave it there as I need dinner and sleep :)

9cataluna
Edited: Dec 12, 2009, 10:31am Top

It's been ages since I've added any books on here so I thought I'd put some more up, otherwise I'm not going to find all the bits of paper I've written stuff down on! I think I've already lost some. I'll have to add blurbs later.

21. Rural Bliss by Lou Wakefield

22. Nauti Intentions by Lora Leigh

23. Eagle in the Snow by Wallace Bream

24. The Travel Writer by Simone Lazoo (BC)

25. The Life and Times of Michael K by J. M. Coetzee

26. Frantic by Katherine Howell

27. Gentlemen Prefer Blonds, but Gentlemen Marry Brunettes by Anita Loos

28. Only Pleasure by Lora Leigh

29. Wicked Pleasure by Lora Leigh

30. I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroder.

I really enjoyed this. The basic plot is girl meets boy, they fall in love, boy dies, then comes back to haunt girl. Because she’s still in love with him she continues the relationship, weird yes. Not only does she have issues with facing the fact that he’s dead, she also blames herself for his death (they had a dare thingy going and the last dare was cliff diving, from which – obviously he didn’t survive).

I gotta admit, I love the verse novel, it’s a fresh way of telling a story, not often seen with adult novels, it’s mainly in teenage section that I’ve come across them. Check out Breaktime by Aiden Chambers, another fantastic verse novel and Love Ghosts and nose hairs is another great Australian? one.

31. The King of Torts by John Grisham.

I don’t mind JG, but he can get repetitive and there’s only so much law talk I can take, so it’s actually the first one of his I’ve read in a long time five dolla. Basically, Clay, who works for the Public Defenders Office, gets approached with the deal of a lifetime, become a tort lawyer – make lots of money in an unsavory manner, generally by stiffing your client. Clay says yes, makes millions of dollars, spends millions of dollars then loses millions of dollars. Grisham is generally a good storyteller, I do sometimes get bored, this wasn’t as thrillery as some of his earlier novels, I loved The Client and The Pelican Brief. I haven’t read any of his non lawyer ones, I did start A painted house, but haven’t finished it yet. Not so much because I don’t like it, more that I have other stuff I would rather read.

32. A Bridge to the Stars by Henning Mankell.

Joel lives with his Father Samuel in Sweden. His mother has abandon him and at night he sneaks out of the house to look for a dog that he has seen from his window. One night he discovers that his father’s bed is empty, he has found a girlfriend in Sarah, the local barmaid. Which Joel resents, he and another boy for a secret society and wreak havoc on the towns no nosed lady. As Winter moves to Spring Joel discovers more about life, culminating in an event on the bridge

I thought it was beautifully well written, I’ve not read one of his adult novels (this is his first young adult effort).

33. Beast by Ally Kennen.

Stephen has a secret pet he keeps in a reservoir near where he lives, it’s one of the last things his father gave him. He’s been in and out of foster homes most his life. His mother is in a mental institution, his father lives in the forest and his brother is gone. About to be kicked out of the latest home, he decides he needs to kill the ‘beast’, he asks his father for help. He forms an attachment to Eric, who has his own welding/metal business and is a father figure to Stephen. The beast is both animal and a euphemism for all that’s gone wrong in Stephens life. By getting rid of the beast, he’s finally free to begin again, without the past coming back to haunt him.

I thought this was well written, engaging and I wanted to find out what happened. The mix of danger and excitement and the psychological aspects all tie the story together.

34. Little Fur: The Legend of Little Fur by Isobel Carmody.

This was a beautiful junior novel, really cute (not really the word I’m thinking of) characters. The story isn’t original, LOTR to name one, but Carmody is such a fantastic writer, that it doesn’t matter. I’ve been a fan of her novel since I was a kid and read Obertwynth. I did find some of it a bit hinky and it may well go over some kids heads, but there’s a strong moral woven into the story – basically we’re killing the earth and a. we’re doing nothing to stop it and b. we don’t care. I found that aspect a bit patronizing.

35. Marked by P.C. Cast & Kristen Cast.

36. Token by Alisa Kwitney & Joelle Jones.

Fantastic! Great GN about not fitting in, first love, and even though it wasn’t in colour I put my snobbery aside and read it anyway – in one sitting. Fantastic illustration by Jones and Kwitneys story was fantastic, I’m hoping there’s more where this came from.

37. Last Light by Andy McNab.

This is the second book of his I’ve read and again really enjoyed it. From a military standpoint, I’m assuming it’s fairly correct (he was in British Army), but his stories are also really funny. I’ve read this out of sequence, which wasn’t a big deal, small changes in characters, but as its part of the back story it doesn’t interfere with enjoying the book.

38. The End of the Affair by Graham Greene.

Heartbreaking, this was filled with such anger and love, beautiful writing and I just loved the realness, I sound cornier than a field but just fantastic! It’s the first GG that I’ve read, would love to try more.

39. The Hunter’s Prey by Diane Whiteside

This is part of the Texas Vampires series and was quite good, I’m looking forward to reading more from the series.

40. Rogue by Rachel Vincent

Book 2 in the Werecats series

42. Pride by Rachel Vincent

Book 3 in the Werecats series

10cataluna
Edited: Dec 18, 2009, 5:01am Top

I thought I'd better add more titles, I'm still trying to remember all the books I read while on holiday, so I'll have to add them as I remember.

43. The Given Day by Dennis Lehane (BC) put this in last months.

I enjoyed this book, but gads it took a long time to read, mainly because I had lots of other stuff I really wanted to read. I felt tense reading this right from the start. Lehane is a fantastic author.

44. The Women in Black by Madeleine St John (BC)

This was funny, in a black sort of way. it focuses on a group of women that work at a department store in Melbourne.

45. Reinventing Julia by Muriel Jensen

This was meh really, not fantastic, but since I didn't have much else to read I kept reading. Julia was quite unbelievble, I didn't really like the character, the plot was also choppy and all over the place.
Book one in the Forrester Square series

46. Elusive Dawn by Kay Hooper

47. On Her Doorstep by Kay Hooper

48. Return Engagement by Kay Hooper

49. Stroke of Fortune by Christine Rimmer - Lone Star Country Club

50. Staying at Daisy's by Jill Mansell

51. Kiss Me Quick by Margaret Moore

52. Between Duty and Desire by Leanne Banks

53. The Marriage Medallion by Christine Rimmer

54. Driven to Distraction by Dixie Browning

55. The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan

This book was fantastic, enjoyed it a lot, which I’m not really surprised about as I love Pan’s Labyrinth and Del Toro’s take on Hell Boy. I also like that it pays homage to the original vampire myths (coffin full of dirt), and that all vampires come from the ‘Old Ones’. I had goose bumps a couple of times, I read this on the way to Bilbao and made it cover to almost cover (if only my bus trip was 20min longer!), I didn’t want to put it down. The suspense was fantastic, it was scary and I’m really looking forward to the next two instalments. I think what makes this work so well is the realism – who isn’t worried about a virus spreading and not being able to do anything.

56. Truth or Dare by Jane Ann Krentz – Book 2 Whispering Springs

I liked this, good action and the story was fun.

57. Touch of Darkness by Christina Dodd

Book two of the Darkness Chosen series.

58. Prey by Rachel Vincent – Book four werecats.

I had to wait until we got to London to get this! And it didn't disappoint me. This continues Faythe and Matt's story, with

59. The Quickie by James Patterson

Quite predicatble, although I still enjoyed it. I do like Patterson, although I’ve not read a lot of Patterson’s books. I do prefer his Cross series more.

60. Not a Star by Nick Hornby

61. Daniel X by James Patterson

Fantastic graphic novel, liked the illustrations.

62. My Soul to take by Rachel Vincent

Good teen book, with Banshees and first love - what a combo. I quite liked Vincent turn at YA.

63. Heroes Vol. 1

I think I actually like reading this more than watching the TV show, lest repetition and lots of other characters and stories that are not on the show. I also like the back story that I’ve gotten from reading them. This is the first graphic novels in the series, I’m waiting for volume two now.

64.Night of Rain and Stars by Maeve Binchy.

This is the third of hers I’ve read and this didn’t annoy me nearly as much as the first. Just going on what I’ve read and the movie I’ve seen (Circle of Friends), she has a formula and sticks to it – basically, there are is group of people or girls, fleeing something. Bad stuff happens to A. show them it’s really not that bad at home or B. they need to move on, perhaps with one of the new characters they’ve met). As with the first book I read there was the VERY annoying girl who couldn’t see that the man she had chosen was a complete prat – either because in true family saga style, they are already married, thus cheating, have done something to hurt those they love, they like to beat their wife/girlfriend. Although it sounds like I don’t enjoy Binchy, I actually think her books are well written, it’s just her characters and the plot lines that tend to make me cranky.

65. Persuasion by Jane Austen

I’ve seen the mini series, I’ve watched the movie and now...drum roll please… I’ve read the book! This is my second favorite Austen book, I love Anne and Frederick together, all the angsty stolen glances, and it’s fully of Austen’s wit.

66. What My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones

This was quite good, another teen verse novel, I’m about to read the follow up to this title. This is all about first love, second love and the sometimes rocky relationship that you have with your parents. I found it insightful, funny, it was easy and fun to read.

67. Free Fall by Robert Crais

This is 8th? in the Elvis Cole series, I’m really enjoying Crais’ books, I find them hilarious, the writing is strong and I’m liking the character development of EC and JP (although I’m not sure if we’ll every learn too much from JP, he keeps it all hidden with those glasses). This adventure sees the boys getting themselves in trouble with the LAPD and the 8 deuces gang.

68. Two Caravans by Marina Lewycka

I actually started listening to this on a Playaway, but it stuffed up so I hade to read the end. This was a little weird, I didn’t mind it, pretty much the same I felt when I read the Tractor book for BC, the dog section on the Playaway was weird also, as his POV is all loudly whispered and very fast, in the book it’s written in capitals. However, it is effective in getting across the excitement a dog feels going about its doggy bid’ness.

69. Emma by Jane Austen

This could possibly be one of my least favorite of the Austen novels. I don’t particularly like Emma, which makes it hard I guess to fully appreciate or like the character.

70. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

If you haven’t guessed I’m on an Austen kick, I’ve never read any of the other books, apart from Pride and Prejudice, so I though I’d give them a go. It’s also part of my plan to read the 1001 books to read before you die. I’ll have to get reading if I’m ever going to finish – I’ve only read about 10 on the list so far.

71. What My Girlfriend Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones

This was a follow up to What my mother doesn't know, it's a verse novel as well and told from Robin's POV, the male character from the first book. Great writing, captures being a teen well.

72. Betrayed by P.C. + Kristen Cast

This is the 2nd in the House of Night series. This is part of the explosion of teenage vampire novels that have cropped up since Twilight. While I have enjoyed the first two books and the writing is improved from the first one (Marked), it’s still no masterpiece. I’ve not read any of P.C Cast’ other books, but I think her daughter is putting her stamp on the series and that’s where the annoying part comes in. I quite like the main character of Zoey Redbird, she’s now become the head of the Dark Daughters after her showdown with Aphrodite. She’s learning about her new powers and trying to accept all the changes. From my distant memories, the interaction between different groups at the school is pretty spot on, but really, that stuff doesn’t change too much, it doesn’t matter what school you go to There are six books in the series so far and while they do annoy on occasion, they also make me giggle and I like the general storyline, characters, so I’m going to finish the series.

73. Undine by Penni Russon

I enjoyed this beautiful tale and have always been fascinated by magic and the pull of the ocean, which is what Undine feels. I remember wishing I was a mermaid when I was little and on occasion I still think it would be awesome to be able to swim for as long as I wanted underwater. Russon weaves a delightful tale of first love, magic, family and coming of age. Her writing is almost lyrical in places and I’m looking forward to reading the other two books in the trilogy.

74. That Was Then, This Is Now by S. E. Hinton

I was putting books away last week and saw this. I’ve not read it for ages, so decided to take it home on the weekend. I still love Hinton’s writing, I remember reading her books a number of times growing up and I was so glad that they still read the same for me. I know that isn’t always the case with childhood memories, (I remember when they released Kimba the White Lion on DVD – such a disappointment!) I love the way she really seems to capture the feeling of the small town where it’s set, the discontent that the characters feel. The ending between Bryon and Mark is so sad. I’ll now have to hunt down her other books, I read The Outsiders for Uni last year, but haven’t read her others since school.

No doubt I’ll be reading a few of my old favorites, we’ve just had a huge withdrawing bee at work and a whole heap of books I read eons ago were taken off, so I grabbed them all in the near future.

75. Shadows in the Twilight by Henning Mankell

This is the sequel to A Bridge to the Stars, Joel will soon be twelve. After he is struck by a bus, but is unharmed he believes that a miracle has happened. He now has to find a way to repay the miracle. Again, Mankell has written a brilliant story. I love Joel’s view of the world, how his imagination works.

76. Wolf on the Fold by Judith Clarke

Kenny is 14 and his father has just died. He now has to get a job so that he can keep his family together. Something happens that will change the way Kenny looks at the world. This fantastic story is told with six different tales interwoven together. Told through the generations of Kenny’s family, it shows what happens when youth and adulthood collide. I thought it was very well written.

77. 48 Shades of Brown by Nick Earls

Quite a good Australian story about Dan, who is spending a year living with his cousin Jacq and her roommate Naomi. Dan is finishing his last year of high school

78. Little Fur: A Fox Called Sorrow by Isobelle Carmody

I remember reading Isobelle Carmody when I was little, I’ve always enjoyed entering her fantasy world, Little Fur is no different, and I’m reading the third in the series now. Although Carmody has still been quite heavy handed with the ‘humans are the ruin of the earth’, I have really enjoyed this junior series. I think that despite me not liking that aspect of the books, it still sends a positive message about what we’re doing wrong. The series, with its secret wilderness full of creatures, reminds me of animals of farthing wood. For this adventure Little Fur and friend Ginger, two ferrets, a rat and Sorrow, a fox that wants to die have to journey to the Underth, to discover an evil troll kings plans.

79. Little Fur: A Mystery of Wolves by Isobelle Carmody

Little Fur rescues a wolf Greyson, as payment he agrees to take Little Fur deep into the mountains to look for Ginger and the ferrets from the last story. Along the way, Little Fur learns the story of her parents, and elf prince and troll princess. She got a green pendant from her mother and a grey cloak from her father.

80. Don’t Tell Mum I Work on the Rigs, she Thinks I’m a Piano Player in a Whorehouse by Paul Carter.

This was hilarious – I’m looking forward to reading the sequel. Carter has a fantastic way of telling his story. He makes even the scariest situation seem funny.

81. Looking for JJ by Anne Cassidy

This was a well written, if rather chilling story. It’s scary to think there are actual children out in the world like JJ. But it raises a very interesting topic – can people really change?

When JJ was 10, she killed her best friend. The story is told in flashbacks by ‘Alice’. Although I knew what was going to happen, it didn’t lessen the impact, Cassidy has taken a very real subject and rather than sensationalizing it, she has written an honest yet unflinching novel.

82. Spy High, Episode 1: The Frankenstein Factory by A. J Butcher

I’ve been listening to this on Playaway and so far, I’m not terrible impressed. The series is set in the US, but this edition is from Bolinda, an Australian company – so its bad American accents all round. But while the narrator is reading the story he has a skippy accent.

83. Spy High, Episode 2: The Chaos Connection by A. J. Butcher.

Against my better judgement I listened to the second Spy High book, the narrator and his crap American accents don’t improve, which is kinda distracting. Who says Van-ness-sirrr? I mean really, even I can do a better accent that this guy. The actual story isn’t too bad as long as you suspend all belief that somehow, fully trained spy/army adults can’t take care of themselves. But 6 teenagers with limited experience in everything but being annoying teenagers, can manage to pull through and not get dead. There are the general grievances between Bond Team members and other students that add a slightly more realistic edge to the series. Overall, it’s not a bad series, just put your suspend reality pants on and go along for the ride.

84. The Song of an Innocent Bystander by Ian Bone

The story is told in alternating sections, Freda, at different ages, the hostage taker, John Wayne Grady and Napkin, which is another hostage. I like how the story unfolds, although it is quite slow in places, a slow build one could say.

85. The Host by Stephenie Meyer

The first love triangle with only two people. I quite liked this, although in some places the writing is annoying, particularly when she is talking in the ‘WE’ (Wanda and Melanie together). Overall, I enjoyed the book, it’s no masterpiece, but then neither are her previous books. It has of course been left open for a sequel, and considering the popularity of Meyer at the moment I wouldn’t be surprised if this is made into a movie.

86. Serving Love by Annmarie McKenna, K. A Mitchell and Mary Winter

This is an anthology of gay M/M novellas. I liked McKennas the most, along with the sexy bit, she has good writing and an actual plot, which some romance novels lack.

87. Surrender by Kimberley Zant

This is the first of Zant's I've read. I was buying some other books on Amazon and saw this in my reccommended reading, I enjoyed it, it was hawt, good story, although rather unbelievable (at least in my world it is!).

88. This is not a drill by Paul Carter

This is the second book by Carter and is just as funny and well written as his first. He has the talent of making even the most mundane story interesting.

11cataluna
Dec 12, 2009, 8:13am Top

Nearly made it to the 100! I'm going to keep plodding along. although I'm not sure if I'll make it. Here's the next lot.

89. Dreamwalker by Isabelle Carmody

This graphic novel was beautifully illustrated and the story was great, Carmody def has a way with words. I love how Ken's notes are written throught the book, it's a nice touch.

90. How to be bad by E. Lockhart, Sarah Mlynowski and Lauren Myracle

This was a fun book, three girls driving through Florida, seeing the sights and learning about life and each other (corny much!), as the blurb says: "Sometimes it doesn't matter where you're going, since getting there is half the fun."

91. Atalanta by Justine & Ron Fontes

Graphic novel about the Greek myth. I liked it and it's a way to learn about myths and legends.

92. Demeter and Persephone by Justine and Ron Fontes

I liked this myth better, (storywise), both were quick reads, but they still seemed like you got the whole story. Hoping that work has the other four in the series.

12jfetting
Dec 12, 2009, 10:15am Top

I really love Persuasion too. That letter, from Captain Wentworth, at the end *swoon*

There is a depth to Anne in this story, I think, that Austen's other female characters lack. She made a mistake, and deals with the consequences. And yay wins in the end.

13cataluna
Dec 12, 2009, 12:04pm Top

#12 So true! I love when they finally reunite, they are two characters I believe in, perhaps because they have their flaws and are made better for them. Something I don't always believe of with her other characters (Emma in particular, although I do think better of her in the end, but I still feel that she's got the potential to be the old Emma).

I often think I was born in the wrong century, Austen manages to capture my dream man perfectly. I love a man that can write a letter. Plus I have the image of Rupert Penry Jones in the latest tv adaption in my head and gosh that man can rock a cravat :)

14cataluna
Dec 15, 2009, 5:34am Top

93. Tomorrow When the War Began by John Marsden.

Not sure why I haven't read this series until now, enjoyed the first book a lot. I remember having to read So much to tell you for school & I love his other books. I'll be interested to see what they do with the movies.

15cataluna
Edited: Dec 23, 2009, 3:46am Top

94. Spy High 3: The Serpent Scenario by A. J. Butcher.

Surprisingly, this was better than the last two. The writing was better and I enjoyed the story more than the previous books.

95. Spy High 4: The Paranoia Plot by A. J. Butcher.

I’m still plodding along with this series, it’s getting better. There are two more books in the first series and I’ve decided to read the second series, which at a glance seem to concentrate on one character at a time.

I've got an almost hopeful feeling, that I'm going to make it to 100 before the 31st. I've had a very slow week, will have to lock myself away over the weekend.

16cataluna
Dec 20, 2009, 4:35pm Top

96. And the hippos boiled in their tanks by Jack Kerouac and W. S. Burroughs.

For a small book, it took me a while to read it, not because I didn't like it, but I wanted to take my time reading it. This is the first I've read for either author and it's made me hungry for more.

The writing is raw, it's real and fantastic. The story is based on fact and protrays the murder of one of the authors friends by another. The story unfolds much like life. In no hurry, while the characters waste away their lives.

This is one of those novels that you're supposed to love regardless of whether you do, but I was pleasantly surprised at how much I did enjoy it.

97. The Librarian: Return to King Solomon's Mines by James Watson.

This was fun, nothing spectacular, the storyline is adapted from the movie and follows it through the story, but Finn's goofyness doesn't translate as well via graphic novel.

98. Untold Tales by David Malouf

This is a collection of four myths/legends retold in short story format. As always, beautiful writing from Malouf.

17wookiebender
Dec 20, 2009, 6:08pm Top

Wow, that's a lot of catching up. :) Looks like you're going to make it to 100 too!

May I also join the Persuasion fan club? :)

And I've got The Women in Black coming up next year (Dec 2010!) for my bookgroup. Looking forward to it (it was actually my recommendation). Glad to hear you liked it.

18cataluna
Dec 21, 2009, 3:59am Top

I had a big list of stuff that I hadn't had the chance to add while I was overseas, which helped a lot. I'm now trying to finish all the books that I've started through the year and haven't finished, plus I'm also cheating by reading all the short stories, graphic novels and YA I have on my TBR pile, which make it a little quicker to catch up.

Ithink one of my new years resolutions will be to limit the multi reading. As it is now I've got six I'm reading actively at the moment, so my mission is to start 2010 with all books finished.

Yes, you can join the fan club, Persuasion is such a beautiful book and one of my faves of Austen's. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of her books next year. I've still got two novels and her short stories to go. Now that i've started I don't know why I didn't start reading them sooner.

The Women in Black was a funny little book, but it was one of my faves for book club this year. Other BC reccomendations would be The Stolen Child, The Spare Room, Year of Wonders and the rather large, but still worth it The Given Day. What else are you reading for BC next year?

19wookiebender
Dec 21, 2009, 8:13pm Top

We've got the whole year planned out. (These people are *organised*!)

Jan - Monkey Grip, Helen Garner
Feb - The Boat, Nam Le
Mar - The World Beneath, Kate Kennedy
Apr - Wanting, Richard Flanagan
May - The Children's Book, AS Byatt
Jun - The Book is Dead, Long Live the Book, Sherman Young
Jul - Novel About My Wife, Emily Perkins
Aug - Jasper Jones, Craig Silvey
Sep - Good to a Fault, Marina Endicott
Oct - Lovesong, Alex Miller
Nov - TBA, will be the Miles Franklin winner (announced in March)
Dec - The Women in Black, Madeleine St John

I've already read (and enjoyed) Jasper Jones and Novel About My Wife, and am looking forward to The Boat and Wanting. And The Children's Book. And Women in Black.

And even if I don't enjoy the book, it's always a good discussion!

20cataluna
Dec 22, 2009, 5:36am Top

There's a couple on that list I've had on my TBR pile for awhile. I want to read Lovesong as part of the Summer Read. The Boat is supposed to be fantastic, hopefully I'll read it in 2010.

I'm going to have to get onto my BC, we are so lazy, (we all work together @ library - it figures :)) We pick the next book either on the night or the week before, so not organised.

21cataluna
Dec 23, 2009, 3:43am Top

99. Close Case by Alafair Burke

This is the third in the Samantha Kincaid series, but the first one I’ve read. I’d previously read the first in the Ellie Hatcher series and had loved the book, enjoyed the writing and the character, so this was a real disappointment for me. I don’t know what it was exactly, but the story didn’t grab me like Dead Connection did. Maybe reading them out of order had something to do with it. I could still follow the story easily, so who knows.

100. Busy Woman Seeks Wife by Annie Sanders.

This was much better than Warnings of Gales, which I read earlier in the year. This was a fun, if predictable story and seriously – who doesn’t need brain candy at this time of year!

101. Under Fire by Jo Davis

This is book two of the Firefighters of Station Five. It’s a bit hawt!! I quite like this series, it amuses me that the author doesn’t let the ladies of her stories swear, but the boys are allowed to. My friend and I think it’s weird, considering the actual content of the book. I haven’t read much romantic suspense, but I’m quite enjoying it.

This was another book I'd read in August, but forgot to put on.

102. Death: The High Cost of Living by Neil Gaiman

I’ve decided to wait until next year to begin Sandman, so I’m reading his other stuff while I wait. I’m a fan of his work, he gives me a happy.

103. Sunset Express by Robert Crais

This is book 6 in the Elvis Cole series. I’ve been slowly working my way through the books, which have quickly become a favourite of mine. I enjoy Crais’ style of writing, the humour is black, the characters are quippy. I am sometimes reminded of early seasons of Buffy (weird connection I know), but the dialog in the earlier seasons is especially fantastic, just like this series!

Looking forward to the second Joe Pike novel The First Rule in Jan ’10.

And yay! Got to 100. I've still got a couple of books that I'm half way through so hopefully I can finish those and add them before 2010.

22cataluna
Edited: Dec 29, 2009, 10:14pm Top

104. Soldier’s Heart by Gary Paulsen

This was brilliant. The subject matter (American Civil War), I’m sure is something everyone is familiar with. But the way Paulsen unfolds the story is so well done. From wide eyed innocence to the brutal reality of war.

105. The Trojan Horse: The Fall of Troy by Justine & Ron Fontes

This was another of the graphic novels from the Greek Myth series. It was good, but weird as they use English slang, which is strange in the ancient Greek setting.

106. The Dead of the Night by John Marsden

Book two in the Tomorrow series. Things are getting harder for Ellie and her friends. Corrie and Kevin are gone and Chris has gone missing. They meet more rebels (a group of adults, that aren’t quite as smart as they think they are). I’m getting quite into this series, I’m glad I didn’t read them when they first came out, it means I don’t have to wait to find out what happens next.

107. Swan Bay by Rod Jones

I bought this ages ago (2003 in fact), I started to read it then but it never caught my fancy – I’ll admit I bought it because I liked the cover. But I saw it on my book shelf the other day and I really wanted to read it, I’m enjoying it so much more. Sometimes I think you have to be ‘ready’ to read some books.

23wookiebender
Dec 30, 2009, 2:04am Top

Congratulations on making 100!

24cataluna
Dec 31, 2009, 4:55am Top

One more for 2009! Looking forward to starting on next years reading.

108. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull by John Jackson Miller and George Lucas.

I like the general layout of the graphic novel and the drawing, but I don't like the blocks of writing about 'what's happening'. I don't think it's necessary in a graphic novel.

Overall, this follows the movie closely and I enjoyed it well enough, I was still cranky about the ...........
.............*SPOILER*.......................................

(Just in case you've been living under a rock!!!)

aliens, that was and still is my least fave part of the story.

25cataluna
Dec 31, 2009, 4:57am Top

Thanks Wookiebender! Overall, I've enjoyed my reading this year, I don't know if I managed to reduce my TBR pile, but I had fun trying.

Group: 100 Books in 2009 Challenge

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