April Reading List

April 2007 Reading List


Here are the books I have read for the month of April. There’s a legend that explains the rating system below the reviews.


1. Heart Shaped Box  by Joe Hill ©2007 – The son of author Stephen King carves out his own career with this horror tale of a man who is a collector of items associated with death. One day he buys a ghost from an internet site, and his troubles begin. ☻☻☻☻


2. You Don’t Love Me Yet  by Jonathan Lethem © 2007 –  Novel about the alternative rock band scene in Los Angeles, and a complaint hotline. ☻☻☻


3. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne © 2006 – As a student of metaphysics I enjoyed this book on some levels, although I felt the concepts were too simplified and tailored to materialistic appetites. It concerns the universal Law of Attraction, which states that what you think about and put much attention into, “good” or “bad”, you will you attract into your life. A much better book is “The Law of Attraction” by Esther and Jerry Hicks. ☻☻☻


4 Angels All Over Town  by Luanne Rice ©1985 –This appealing first novel explores the emotional growth of three sisters as they fall in love, marry, and struggle with changing loyalties.☻☻☻


5 Full of Grace  by Dorothea Benton Frank ©2006 – New Jersey girl is transplanted to the South. She deals with a meddlesome Italian Catholic family and her boyfriend, who is suffering from a brain tumor. Unfortunately the book turns into a promotion for the Catholic church. I will never read this author again without checking for religious content first. ☻☻


6 Grave Peril by Jim Butcher © 2001 – Book three of the Dresden Files, a book series that was made into a television series by the Sci-Fi channel. In  my opinion, the tv show is better than the books, but still worth reading if you like sci-fi fantasy. In this outing, Chicago wizard Harry Dresden solves the mystery of why malignant ghosts are suddenly wreaking havoc on the Earth plane. ☻☻☻


7 Stigma by Philip Hawley, Jr.  ©2007 – A troubled doctor gets caught up in a global conspiracy after a mysteriously afflicted four-year-old Guatemalan boy dies on his watch. Pediatric ER physician Luke McKenna’s curiosity is piqued when it seems the child’s symptoms don’t match any known disease; he’s more intrigued, however, when hospital administrators and Guatemalan officials whisk away the child’s body before McKenna can perform a postmortem investigation. Just a bit too long. ☻☻☻☻


8 Good Karma by Joan Duncan Oliver ©2006 – Metaphysics concerning responsibility, honesty, intention, self-awareness, and ways to live peacefully with others. Discussions of what “karma” actually is and how it affects our lives. Lovers of the show “My Name is Earl” will get to see what karma is really all about. ☻☻☻☻☻


9 Blue Shoes and Happiness by Alexander McCall Smith ©2006 – Book 7 of my favorite African detective series. In this book, Mma Ramotswe investigates a blackmail case, rampant fear at the Mokolodi Game Reserve and what’s causing it, and a doctor who may be falsifying blood pressure readings to generate money from blood pressure medication sales. All done in the gentle style of the author – a feel-good book that backs up your faith in people and the fact that all people are the same everywhere. ☻☻☻☻☻


False Starts:

Hardscrabble Road by Jane Haddam © 2006 An unbelievable boring book that sounded so promising. It revolves around a conservative talk show host with a substance abuse problem (sound familiar?), the homeless man he blames for his problems, his sister who is a nun, and some property he bequeathed to the nun’s Order. Billed as a “literate novel”, it is packed full of unnecessary dialogue, details, and stiff language. I think I got to page 80, then decided life was too short to waste on a book like this. Beware the moniker “literate novel” when choosing a novel for escape or pure entertainment. A dud. ☻



☻☻☻☻☻   Excellent. I  highly recommend this book. Wonderfully plotted or chockfull of insights.

☻☻☻☻       Very good. May have minor aspects of style or plot that prevented it from getting 5 smileys.

☻☻☻           Flawed, but of some entertainment or thought-provoking value.

☻☻                Read this book if you are stranded on a desert island and have nothing else handy to read.

                    Don’t bother, it’s a waste of time. A suggested use is to light the fire for cooking your fish on the desert island.





Filed under Books

7 responses to “April Reading List

  1. Heart Shape Box and Stigma sound interesting, I’ll have to give them the once over the next time I’m in the box store.

  2. babybull40

    hi I wanted to pop by via Sebastien’s site and say hello.. I use to do a ton of reading.. mostly dramas and murder type novels.. like James Patterson.. well since having my little guy.. I find I don’t read nearly as much as I would like to.. Too many tasks and not enough time.. I think about starting up the reading again.. soon.. the books you read do sound interesting..

  3. Sonja (jackalope) says:

    Yeah, Lyndon, Heart Shaped Box was pretty scary. If you like horror tales, you’ll love it. Stigma is very much an action adventure story.

    Babybull40 – Nice to hear from you! Seb is one of my best blogging buddiees. Love his sense of humor. In case you do find the time to read again, there’s a website called Readers United that let’s you trade books with others for free (you just have to pay postage to send the books, of course when you want a book someone else pays the postage). I trade a lot of my books there. The website is http://www.ReadersUnited.com

  4. Nice blog, and good reviews. I’ll have to remember to come back here.

  5. I’m an avid reader and was pleased to see your book reviews. I adore the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series. It’s funny because I heard of the books often and thought I would not care for them, finally gave in and read one, and promptly read the whole lot.

  6. Diwakar

    this looks like a long list for a month
    how much can you read 🙂

  7. dmarks: Thanks! I am so happy when my writing strikes a chord with someone. I love feedback!

    icedmocha: Isn’t reading great? To me it’s the best escape; inexpensive, and no customs hassles. the Ladies No1 Detective Agency is a series I cherish. I can’t wait till Smith comes out with new additions (which he just did, by the way, it’s still in hardcover). I collect the softcovers and have every one in my bookshelf.

    Diwakar: I have a lot of spare time due to a chronic health problem, so I can read A LOT!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s