I took a long blogging vacation, and therefore have not posted my book reviews in awhile. I’ve been busy reading, so here are the books I have read so far in 2008, part one. There are too many to present in one post, so I’m breaking them up a bit. Sorry my reviews aren’t as detailed as usual, but I figured no one would read this post if it became that long!!
There’s a legend that explains the rating system below the reviews.
1 The Deadliest Strain by Jan Coffey ©2008 –☻☻☻ A supermicrobe is found to be the cause of sudden, unexplained deaths—marked by rapid decomposition— which are cropping up across the U.S.
2 The Girls by Lori Lansens ©2005 –☻☻☻☻☻ Touching fiction about Siamese twin sisters and their struggles and triumphs. Wonderful!
3 This Book Will Save Your Life by A.M. Homes ©2006 –☻☻☻☻ Journey from isolation to connection for a Los Angeles dweller.
4 Earthbound by Richard Matheson ©1999 –☻☻☻☻ Couple go on a second honeymoon and find the cottage they are staying in is haunted by the ghost of a dangerous woman.
5 A Border Passage by Leila Ahmed ©1999 –☻☻☻☻ Non-fiction memoir written by an Egyptian woman regarding her youth and formative years in 1940’s and 50’s Cairo and of her eventual immigration to the United States where she is now a Professor of Women’s Studies at Amherst.
6 The Anxiety of Everyday Objects by Aurelie Sheehan ©2004- ☻☻☻ Kind of like“The Devil Wears Prada” in a law firm rather than the fashion industry.
7 Significant Others by Armistead Maupin – ©1987 ☻☻☻☻☻ Part 5 of the “Tales of the City” series, about a diverse group of people living in San Francisco.
8 Dexter in the Dark by Jeff Lindsey ©2007 –☻☻☻☻ Further adventures of Dexter Morgan: blood spatter expert for the police by day and serial killer by night. He only kills other serial killers and abides by a strict internal code. Although a sociopath, he maintains relationships with a foster sister, and a girlfriend and her children.
9 Bel Canto by Ann Patchett – ©2001 ☻☻☻☻☻ I loved this book about hostages and their captors. I have heard others say they don’t like the “Stockholm Syndrome” displayed by the hostages, but I think it’s a tribute to what happens when people try to understand each other’s situations and ease them.
10 What the Bleep Do We Know? by Arntz, Chasse, & Vicente – ©2005 ☻☻☻☻ Non-fiction. How quantum physics and spirituality mesh.
11 The Second Assistant by Clare Naylor & Mimi Hare – ©2004 ☻☻☻ Chick lit about a woman on the bottom rung of the Hollywood ladder and dealing with the whims of the rich.
12 Whitethorn Woods by Maeve Binchy – ©2006 ☻☻☻☻ The townsfolk of the Irish town of Rossmore have differing opinions about a new highway coming through their town because an ancient shrine would have to be destroyed. Many well-described characters that you come to care about.
13 Reunions by Raymond Moody, MD – ©1993 ☻☻☻☻ Non-fiction. Doctor studies death and the afterlife and researches how the living can communicate with the dead.
14 The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox by Maggie Farrell– © ☻☻ Unlikeable story of family secrets and betrayal. Yawn.
15 Trace Evidence by Elizabeth Becka – ©2005 ☻☻☻☻ Female forensic scientist solves murder cases.
16 What Happened to Henry by Sharon Pywell– ©2004 ☻☻☻☻☻ A weird puppy of a book, but very likeable. Story of strong sibling bonds and how they handle the strange phenomenon that the oldest child is involved in. To say more would ruin it.
17 The Lens of Perception by Hal Zina Bennett – ©2007 ☻☻☻☻ Non-fiction. An analysis of how individuals may experience the same events, but interpret them differently mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, and how these interpretations can affect their lives negatively or positively.
18 Falling by Christopher Pike– ©2007 ☻☻☻☻Kind of like “Silence of the Lambs” – FBI agent solves puzzle of acid-throwing individual who targets women whom he thinks have been unfaithful. Lots of twists and turns.
19 Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling by Wayne Dyer– ©2006 ☻☻☻☻ Non-fiction. Thinking positively and manifesting what you want.
20 Flesh and Bone by Jefferson Bass – ©2007 ☻☻☻☻ Grisly and grimy details (interesting, however) abound in this fictional novel about forensic scientists and the Body Farm, a real-life facility in Tennessee that studies human decomposition in its various forms and circumstances.
☻☻☻☻☻ Excellent. I highly recommend this book. Wonderfully plotted or chockful 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.