Saturday, August 25, 2007

The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

8/10 - Quick, fun read. I loved Mma Ramotswe's straightforward matter-of-fact personality. This is a rare book because I wished it would have been more detailed, more in depth. You got a taste of Africa, but it would have been great to have that really immersed feel you get with more detailed writing. Fun read although very predictable. The characters and the unique African culture make it very entertaining.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The Book of Bright Ideas

10/10 - Heartwarming! It was everything I love in a book. Great characters, good mix of happy and sad, and a good if not somewhat predictable ending. Reminescent of Lorna Landvik, whom I love. I thought the story line was very believable. But the characters were fabulous! Can't say enough good things.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Gifted by Nikita Lalwani

2/10 - I really wanted to like this book, really I did. It was an advanced reading copy that I was given to review. But the truth is, it wouldn't have passed my 100 page rule under normal circumstances. It is utterly lacking in warmth, and the first half of the book is excrutiatingly repetitious. It reads like The Memory Keeper's Daughter (which I hated) and has elements of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (which I loved for it's humor and warmth, two characteristics which this book was completely lacking). There are secondary characters that we explore in detail, yet add nothing to the story. And the ending leaves us hanging over a precipice with nothing close to resolution or epiphany. I had to force myself to finish it, and when I did, I threw the book to the floor in disgust. I feel like such a jerk for writing this, this is the author's debut book, but I promised to be truthful, so there it is.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

The Brothers K by David James Duncan

8/10 - It was a long journey, and I'm not sure where we were or where we've ended up, but I can say I enjoyed my stay. When the book came to an end, I didn't feel as emotional as I expected, being a lover of character driven fiction. I mostly felt disoriented, if that makes sense at all. I think my favorite part was the how the boys came of age in there own understanding of theology and their beliefs. I thought the advice their father gave them was so simple but important, and I liked how he really pushed them to be their own men, by not pushing them towards anything at all. That's how I hope to be as a parent. I want my daughter to chose her own path, but hopefully set an example that she'll want to follow. Very interesting book to say the least.