28. Philip Hall likes me. I reckon maybe. by Bette Greene – I started this Newbery Honor book shortly after 1 a.m. and finished it 2 hours later, in between answering phone calls at work. It’s target audience is preteen girls. It’s a good book for that age, but older girls may not like it. I doubt boys would read it at all. Recommended for young girls who can handle longer chapter books. It’s 135 pages long. (finished 4/1)
29. Things I Learned From Knitting:whether I wanted to or not by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee – What fun and oh-so-true observations on life and knitting and their frequent intersections! (finished 4/9)
30. Moving Mars by Greg Bear – Hugo Award nominee. This is a dense book, crammed with politics and theoretical physics that were often beyond me. The characters were approachable and interesting, and I’m glad I stuck with it, but this was no easy read. Especially recommended for folks who like hard sci-fi and the effects of same on politics/society. (finished 4/9)
31. Déjà Dead by Kathy Reichs – This was a good read, including elements I love: set in a French-speaking city, with enough of that language to make me feel my degree in French wasn’t a total waste of time (each phrase translated so non-French speakers will understand), a good serial-killer mystery, an interesting protagonist/narrator, good writing.
The main character is Temperance Brennan, whose name you may recognize from the TV show “Bones,” as this character is loosely based on this book (and others that follow in a series). Be warned, though, that this character has little in common with the TV Brennan. Aside from the TV show being set 20 or more years after the book and set in the DC area, the book Brennan is different: middle-aged, with a grown daughter, and a recovering alcoholic. She is a recovering Catholic, too, with family ties that do not at all mirror the plot line that was created for the TV Brennan’s family entanglements.
So read it, because it’s well worth it. But don’t expect great insight into the TV character. I mean, I love the TV Brennan for herself, so this won’t change anything for me, but, after reading the book, I wonder why they gave the TV counterpart the same name. They’re just too different. (finished 4/14)
32. Empire by Orson Scott Card – OSC has been one of my fav writers (perhaps even my #1) since I read Speaker for the Dead many, many moons ago. I’m glad that I didn’t read Empire as my first OSC book or I might never have read another. The story zips along (in the style of the TV show 24), but the writing style is so heavy, so didactic, so preachy that it’s difficult to read. I know the subject matter is immediately relevant to our political situation today, and I understand the urgency, but OSC has tackled other weighty issues in his other books without beating us over the head with them. He can persuade without preaching, I promise. If you’re looking for examples, read Ender’s Game, then Speaker for the Dead, then the other Ender books. You’ll see what I mean. (finished 4/18)
33. Cat & Mouse by James Patterson – The plot is interesting and engrossing, but I had to get past the writing style to finish the book. The first-person narrative parts are somehow glib and at the same time too self-conscious, and the various characters’ thoughts are too similar or too similarly expressed. And Patterson used the device of multiple narrators to hide essential information about the main character from the reader. It felt like he cheated, somehow. (finished 4/19)
34. When Wallflowers Die by Sandra West Powell – This was a good book. I really like the author’s voice and narrative style. It turns out that this is the 3rd book featuring the same protagonist and supporting characters. I wish I’d started at the beginning, as I love to watch characters’ lives grow and change over a series, but I’m glad I found this author. I will definitely get her other books and read them ASAP. (finished 4/21)
35. P.S. I Love You by Cecelia Ahern – What a good book! I enjoyed it all the way through and was pleased that the ending didn’t wrap everything up with a neat bow. It was much more real that way. Wonder if the Hollywood version respected the author’s ending? (finished 4/26)
36. Love Rosie by Cecelia Ahern – OMG, what a wonderful book! I really liked the previous book by Ahern (P.S. I Love You), which was her first-ever novel, and hoped this book, her “sophomore” effort, wouldn’t disappoint. I needn’t have worried. This second book is even better than the first. It’s one of my new favorite books. So don’t ask to borrow my copy, just get yourself to a bookstore or library pronto and get this book. Then read it. Then send me your thanks. You’re welcome. (finished 4/28)