Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What I've read since the Bar Exam

The last time I updated my sidebar was right after the Bar Exam. Which was February 2008. I guess it is time for an update. I saved a few library receipts so we'll see what I remember about the books I've read in the past year and a half. In no particular order:

Eat cake: a novel
- light and fluffy, like eating cake

The mermaid chair
- What would be better than a story about a bored middle-aged woman having an
affair? Why, if she had the affair with a monk, of course. The other elements
of the story were interesting, but I just wasn't feeling sympathetic towards
the main character.

The tenth circle: a novel
- by Jodi Picoult...need I say more?

Salem Falls
- by Jodi Picoult.

Legally correct fairy tales
- Hmm...I really don't recall at all. Hard to believe that legalese wouldn't be
memorable.

The future homemakers of America
- Fine, but one of those books that doesn't know when to stop. The story went on
a little too long.

The day I ate whatever I wanted: And other small acts of liberation
- A collection of short stories about women and their neurosis of which I
remember very few details.

The sand castle
- A family goes to the beach...and I don't recall too much of what happened there.

Death by cashmere: A seaside knitters mystery
- A slightly mysterious tale

Them
- by Joyce Carol Oates. A story about a depressing life based on letters Ms.
Oates received from a former student. I hope the student's real life wasn't as
bad as the life depicted in the book.

**The Friendly Persuasion
- A set of short stories about a Quaker family. Understated and insightful. I
really enjoyed this one.
"But a woman lived in a house, not outdoors. A sunset didn't come inside, light the wall behind the kitchen range so's she could see it while cooking supper; clouds taking this shape or that didn't settle down on the mantelpiece to keep her company while mending. The prettiness a woman saw, she had to make, she had to build it up from odds and ends. Did Jess ever note her handiwork? The articles embroidered, painted, stenciled, gilded, dyed? The combcases, footstools, doilies, tidies, fire screens, rugs, penwipers, lambrequins? Did he see how the bareness of timber and stone had been hidden and softened, until the room, to her eye, showed itself as prettier than any cloud, and not to be outdone, even, by a rose."

Yesterday's weather
- I very, very rarely do not finish a book. I didn't finish this one. It is a
collection of short stories and I didn't find any redeeming qualities in them.
Bad language and depressing subject matter do not a classic make.

Bee season: a novel
- A book about a little girl who competes in spelling bees...no wait, that is
what I thought it was. Actually a book about a little girl who competes in a
spelling bee in the first chapter of the book and then in the space of a year
her family goes off the deep end while she prepares for the next spelling bee.

The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency: Books 1-4
- I wouldn't call these suspenseful, or all that mysterious...but they are an
easy, enjoyable read.

The Devil Wears Prada
- Wow, Hollywood actually improved upon a book and made it cleaner at the same
time? Seriously, they did. The book falls short.

Julie and Julia
- Wait, Hollywood made a movie that is better and cleaner than the book again?
Yes, they did. The book has very little driving the plot (if you can call it
that) and even less to recommend it by way of writing style and language.

The 5 People You Meet in Heaven
- Memorable, in an odd sort of way. Not what I was expecting.

The Maytrees
- I don't think I'm smart enough to understand half of what this book was
saying. It did make me want to go hang out on Cape Cod though.

My Name is Asher Lev
- I don't think I know enough about Judaism to really get this book.

The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet
- A quirky book about a quirky kid. An interesting read, but it takes a giant
leap into fantasy at the end of the book. Seriously, I think a fantasy
writer found this unfinished manuscript in an attic somewhere and thought "hey,
I'll just come up with an ending to this book really quick." I'm still
perplexed by what happened there.



Re-reads:

Anne of Green Gables 1-8
- Don't be surprised when you want to move to Prince Edward Island and live at
Ingleside. Beautifully written stories from a long-ago era. Nothing
scandalous need apply.

The Secret Life of Bees
- Some memorable images and an interesting story line. Definitely preferred the
book over the movie.

Wuthering Heights
- I finally made it through the whole book this time. Sorry Heathcliff, but you
just aren't my favorite.


Those are all I can think/find the library receipts for.

On an unrelated note, Sawyer's bedtime prayers lately crack me up. This was tonight's: "Father...Monster trucks jump over cars...pizza, cheese, chicken, juice, napkins, fruit snacks, pickin' carrots...Amen." He just lists things that he likes. Awesome.

4 comments:

Mike &; Lauren said...

Wow, Erin! Mike was impressed by your long list. I love your reviews. I will have to try some of your favorites. I am always looking for good books. Actually, I haven't read Anne of Green Gables since I was about 15 so I should do those again!

Have you seen Goodreads.com? You should join if you haven't! It's the best way to keep track of what I have read and my growing list of to-reads.

M.M.M. said...

I wanted a good book to read so I asked a lady in my ward who is an English Professor at ASU. She gave me "Julie and Julia." I only read 2 chapters cause I got tired of all the F bombs and other dirty talk. And now I need a new book. That I don't have to hide from Don.

Bryce said...

I would like to do a mind probe on the criteria for your reading selections because you seem to pick the most random crap, read a chapter or two, explain to me how stupid it is, and finally refuse to stop reading it until you are done. Ever hopeful for a change of plot you are. If I ever write a book though, all I have to do is put an eclectic painting of a farmhouse in a field of wheat on it and I know at least one person will read it. Maybe I should have done that with my thesis. Too late now. And yes, Sawyer's prayers are awesome! I love that kid!

megan said...

Pictures! Pictures! Pictures! (picket line style...) we need to see costumes!