Thursday, April 19, 2012

April Reading List

Welcome back! After this, I am hoping the monthly reading list will be put out at the beginning of the month as opposed to the middle of it. This month started out strong, reading The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, Mockingjay, and Matched. It’s funny how with these books April seems to have a certain Dystopian theme to it.

Over the next few weeks I will put out a personal review of each of them, as well as respond to any questions that there may be about the books. I also intend on posting updates about the books I am currently reading. Let me introduce you to the rest of my April Reading List:

Hearts in Atlanta by Stephen King – this is the first King novel I have picked up and I am enjoying it immensely so far. Taking place in the 60’s, we follow the life of Bobby Garfield. Bobby starts out as a boy just turned eleven. His father passed away when he was three, and it has been just him and his mom since. Life is pretty normal until an old man named Ted moves into Bobby’s building. From then on, he will never view his life the same. What caught my eye was the cover: Anthony Hopkin’s face with a hand held out. Anthony Hopkins is one of my all-time favorite actors, and if he was involved with this story in any way, I don’t see how I could hate it.

Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg – recommended this book to me after I put in that I read – and loved – The Picture of Dorian Gray. They do seem a bit alike in the synopsis, but only slightly. In this story, the tragic hero happens upon a man who looks bafflingly like himself. After this encounter, he believes he is going mad as a long string of events unfold that he finds himself struggling to understand. Riveting thus far!

Crossed by Ally Condie – after reading Matched, I knew I was going to have to continue. Cassia is on a mission to find Ky and save him from war – and almost certain death. The pressing issue is: once she finds him, what will their next move be? Hide in the wilderness forever, or find a way to fight back and claim their lives (and love) as their own?

The Flanders Panel by Arturo PĂ©rez-Reverte – a painting about to be auctioned off becomes the center of a mystery when an inscription is found hidden in one of the corners. Even though two centuries have passed, will our hero, Julia, be able to solve the crime? This book has a hint of The Da Vinci Code, and I love it.

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks – this zombie book takes a very different approach. Brooks is said to be fervently warning his readers of what happened ‘last time’ and warning us that, if the proper precautions aren’t taken, it could all happen again. (Dun-dun-dun!) In all seriousness though, I’ve never read a zombie book, and I’m pretty excited about this one.

A is for Alibi by Sue Grafton – Kinsley Millhone is a cop turned private investigator. Alone and unattached, she finds herself drawn to the most hopeless of cases. This is what draws her to the case of a desperate woman accused of killing her husband. Clearing her name won’t be easy, given the amount of time the woman had spent in jail already for the charge, but when another body turns up, Millhone may have found herself living a little too dangerously. I am hoping to love this series, as Sue Grafton has a great deal of books out there and I am pretty desperate for a good mystery series!

So there they are, the books on my April reading list. Hopefully I will be able to finish them all before May, but I have a feeling Hearts in Atlanta will probably carry over a month or two (it’s a long one – but worth it!) If you have any recommendations, I would love to hear them: May is fast approaching and another list will have to be compiled! What's on your reading list?

Happy reading!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Review from a Page: Welcome Dear Readers

Let me introduce myself. I am Suzanne, a 23 year old woman born in Missouri, residing in Florida, working at one of Gainesville's finest public libraries. Currently, I am but a humble page.

It struck me as funny that the part-time workers putting away books, pushing carts around, and generally doing entry level work for a library would be called 'pages' - what a horrible pun. Yet, the longer I work at the library the more I see that, really, what is a library without it's pages? One horrid pun deserves another...but I digress.

This is not the first time in my life I have found myself intertwined with a library. When I was in middle school I would spend every recess my teachers and our wonderful librarian would allow volunteering in our schools little library, whether it be stamping cards or putting away stacks of books. When there wasn't all that much to do, we [the librarian and I] would discuss everything; the news, our families, books coming out, books up for awards...

It is here, in the library, that I found myself actually talking. Those who know me currently as I am may [or may not] be surprised to know I didn't really talk much in grade school and middle school. I was the kind of awkward kid who would rather read about other people having fun and going out rather than try it herself. Only in the quiet of the library on those still afternoons would I divulge my thoughts and opinions.

Returning to the library after so many years (even though it is a very different, and much bigger library), it is almost like I had never left. This time around, I have the added bonus of having dozens of coworkers who are just as in love with a good story as I am - if not more. This is where this blog comes in, dear readers.

I won't be so ego-centrical as to think this is going to be one of those blogs that has thousands of followers, or even hundreds. This blog isn't about that. This is about getting back to something I love, and something I just want to put out there and share.

I made a promise to myself that, by the end of this year, I will have read 50 books. This is where I will post what I am reading, where I am in the book, and what I think of it. If you would like to read along with me, go for it. If you have already read the book, feel free to leave a review (just be sure to label if there are spoilers!) If you think I have horrible taste in books, that's fine.

Just a few rules:

1. If you think the books I read are awful, don't just say that - tell me why and recommend a book that you love or think is great. Unless I have already read it, I will read it.

2. If you want to comment on a book I am reading or respond to a question, please elaborate. As much as I love seeing every "Katniss is awesome!!!!!" comment, I think you could do better: tell me why.

3. No personal attacks. Opinions are opinions, folks. You have one, I have one, it's just how it is. Let's be mature.

So here's to 2012 - may the stories be great, the characters dynamic, and endings unexpected.