Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Book of Bright Ideas

After reading the summary flap, I was hooked. Mainly I was intrigued and it's killing me not to know what would be the outcome of the story hence the recent purchase of Sandra Kring's novel. I think the biggest part of the book's charm are the two little girls: Button and Winnalee. I love it when kids are the central characters of the story. The story is about the arrival of two free-spirited sisters Winnalee and Freeda in the quiet rural Wisconsin. Many people's lives were changed thanks to the arrival of these sisters and despite all the negativities thrown at them, they settled to make that town their home too.

It is such a heartwarming book, one full with lively characters coming together whether on a cookout lunches, community sales or gossips. The author uses such simple conversational language, making you feel that the kids really wrote the book. The Book of Bright Ideas is surprising in the sense that it has many twists and unexpected bends that won't let me allow to bring the book down. I suggest that you read this if you ever get the chance, better yet, grab the book and sit down on it every afternoon or during your free times.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

The Alphabet Sisters

It tells the story of the Quinlan sisters: Anna, Bett and Carrie who also sang as a trio, identically dressed and calls themselves The Alphabet Sisters. Aside from being sisters, they are also best friends with each other but sadly, that all ended up three years ago. It might probably have started with the announcement of Carrie and Bett's fiance that they were in love and is going to be married. Since then they haven't talked with each other.

The sisters' grandmother Lola wants her granddaughters to reconciliate, inviting them all back home to celebrate her eightieth birthday knowing that she's the only one who can summon the Alphabet Sisters back. This book is a wonderful tale of three feuding sisters and the baggage that they are all carrying after the reunion. Scenes from the book almost feels real, like the author is truly speaking from experience with characters that are so warm and fascinating you can't help but love them.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Love The One You're With

How do you know if you’ve found the one? Can you really love the one you’re with when you can’t forget the one who got away?

Funny how these kind of mush prompts me to pick up a book and head straight to the cashier. I like reading about dramas, people that should be together who aren't together. Somehow it falls into that, but not really. It is about a newly married wedding photographer who lives in New York City. She is quite happy and deeply in love with her husband who is a lawyer at a big firm in New York. But one fateful afternoon, Ellen runs into Leo for the the first time in 8 years. Leo was her first love, the one who left her heartbroken without explanation but still the one she could never forget.

Their meeting sparked her long ago emotions and Ellen starts questioning whether the life she's living is the one she's meant to live. It's a story about a woman who isn't quite sure of what she wants or of who she is. A lot of people may not have like it because of the author's departure to her usual writing style, I think it is still a good read. A complex story of feelings, grappling with love, lust, duty and honor.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

The Ex-Debutante

Denial \de-ni-al\ n (1528): one small word crammed with three tiny syllables that quite frankly causes great big problems in a whole lot of lives; a word, like most, with multiple meanings. 1: refusal to admit the truth 2: negation of logic, and 3: (my personal favorite) the reason I got tangled up in what I now refer to as The Debutante Mess. That's what prompt me to buy and read this book. From a habit of scanning first the book so that I can judge if the conversation is good or poorly written, you know, trying hard to be sassy and all. Carlisle Cushing, heiress personified, left her ritzy life in the fictional Willow Creek, Texas to become a divorce lawyer (in contrast to her mother's divorcing habit) but was lured back into the old town because her mother is facing another divorce.

But instead, she found herself teaching eighteen year olds to balance books on their heads and finding out what to do with the family-sponsored 100th Annual debutante ball which was on the verge of collapse. It was nice learning the ins and outs of these debutante parties, finding the right dress, young women trying to find their places in the world and some young women running away from it.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Secret Desires Of A Soccer Mom

At first, I thought that this novel by Robyn Harding has a similarity to the famous TV series Desperate Housewives but oh well, it might still be a good read. I wasn't wrong because I couldn't put it down and was so into Paige because she's hilarious and simply charming. Since Paige is a stay-home mom now, living in a ritzy neighborhood suburb, she's unsure of what to do with all her free time, so what she does is have coffee with her friends, housewives with her same level.

Apparently, she has been a confidant to her friend Karen's deepest secret. Karen is having an affair. With these finding, Paige thought that she might need to revamp her sexual life. After some failed attempts in seducing her husband, Paige is still determined to spice up her life. But everything change when Karen is found dead in her garage. Paige put it into her own hands to find out who killed her friend, investigating her lover first. Can Paige find out what happened to Karen? Find out for yourself.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Journal Of Mortifying Moments

Working to be a better person, Kerry Spence followed the advice of her therapist to write down her most difficult experiences in a journal. Kerry is an unfulfilled worker stuck with a boring job in advertisement dealing with a terrible boss and has an annoying colleague who claims to be in love with her but humiliates her in any way he can find. Plus the fact that Kerry has a dysfunctional relationship with his current boyfriend (who is gorgeous by the way) and a mother who is always breathing down on her neck. At first Kerry went to a psychic to help her, took up yoga and consulting a self-help book from some doctor that always prove to fail.

A diary of past encounters with men that may be contributing to your current negative and dysfunctional relationship.” At least that's what her therapist intended her to do, a secret book where even the most embarrassing encounters are to be written down. It's a fun read mainly because of its witty takes on single thirty-something life with embarrassing stuff on the side.

Monday, May 28, 2007

What Jamie Saw

I've always admired books that have such strong messages even if it's meant for a certain group age only. What Jamie Saw is one of them. It is a story of a young boy's thoughts and feelings in dealing with abuse and living in hiding. Jamie, together with his mother, Patty and baby sister Nin, left their house to seek the help of Patty's friend, Earl, when Jamie saw his stepfather throw Nin across the room! They were pretty much contented with their life in a trailer even though they don't have the proper amenities in their trailer house.

Although it may come out as a pretty strong literature, in a way, the author, Carolyn Coman, is pretty much right in describing what's happening. I also like the ways she describe the feelings of the characters in the story no matter how painful it may sound. Jamie being just a third grader, became a very big help for her mother and for working most of the things out in their new life. This is indeed something that should be recommended to be read in their schools.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Newberry Award

Whenever I will buy children's book, I easily get interested with books that has Newberry Honor or Newberry Award stamped on the cover compared to those books that don't have it. Most of my favorite young adult books are Newberry Awards or Honors such as Holes, The View from Saturday, Because of Winn-Dixie, Surviving the Applewhites, etc. What exactly is Newbery Award and how do books and author get it?

After a short research, I found out that Newbery Medal is a yearly award that honors an outstanding contribution to children's literature. It was named after John Newbery, an English bookseller in the 1700s. It was however created a bit later by Frederic G. Melcher in 1921. The first award was given in 1922 to author Henrik Willem Von Loon for his novel, The Story of Mankind.