Book Chat

November 2009… and October 2010

It’s November already!  And with all the Halloween hullabaloo, I forgot to post about October’s Reading Log.  So you get both today!

So here, straight from my diary, is my Reading Log from one year ago, November 2009:

Title Start Finish Thoughts Grade 

Format

Eating my Words, by Mimi Sheraton 11/7/09 11/19/09 Started well, then got boring.  I like food, and I may collect recipes obsessively, but I’m obviously not a foodie.  Lost interest halfway through. C- 

Hardback

The Devil Wears Prada,by Lauren Weisberger 11/11/09 11/18/09 One occasion where the movie was better.  Another audiobook—Rachel Leigh Cook was annoyingly monotone as narrator.  Plot so-so, characters uninspiring. B- 

Audio Book

The Dogs of Babel, by Carolyn Parkhurst 11/20/09 11/20/09 Wow, really absorbing.  Read in one night.  Must admit, cried because Sam and I had a fight and while reading I felt we would never be as in love.  But the plot took a completely different turn.  So good.  So sad.  Engrossing. A+ 

Paperback

Little, Big

by John Crowley

11/20/09 Started, didn’t finish.  Just too long and intricate-seeming.  Mailed for PBS.com N/A 

Paperback

Anne of Green Gables

by L.M. Montgomery

11/24/09 12/12/09 Lovely, lovely, as always.  Great narrator.  I always grow very interested in L.M. Montgomery whenever I re-read.  I hope to collect audio versions of the whole Anne set.  Delicious. A+ 

Audio Book

The Handmaid’s Tale

by Margaret Atwood

11/24/09 11/25/09 Read on the plane/car ride—have always wanted to read since a boy did for his Senior AP Lit project.  Very well written.  Fascinating and scary.  Apocalyptic tales are always interesting.  Definitely food for thought. A+ 

Paperback

Mr. and Mrs. Darcy: Two Shall Become One

by Sharon Lathan

11/26/09 12/7/09 I admit I looked down on this because it was fan fic, & it really was pretty ok.  Took forever for anything to happen—the entire 300+ pages constituted a couple months.  And there’s a sequel, of course!  Mediocre, but entertaining sometimes. C+ 

Paperback

Looks like I had time to read quite a few books this time last year… I hope I can fit it in this year too.  I need it as stress relief.  Reading is so therapeutic!

And now, straight from the present, my Reading Log for October 2010.  I got into AR this month, and that’s about all the reading I’ve had time to do. I included the AR information in the Grade and Format column.  So it may look like a lot, but most of the books I read this month were picture books or short chapter books.  Fun reading!

So here is my Reading Log for the month of October, 2010:

Title Start Finish Thoughts Grade/
Format
Plain Truth,
by Jodi Piccoult
10/2/10 10/3/10 Good, fast-paced legal thriller.  Always pulls at the heart strings, that JP.  All about the legal case of an Amish girl who had an illegitimate baby and whether or not she killed it.  Nice look into Amish ways, which interest me.  I never like the lawyer-romances of JP’s books.  I just don’t relate to commitment issues. A

Paperback

Room One,
by Andrew Clements
10/5/10 10/11/10 First AR book for school.  Interesting plot and good writing, although the ending seemed unfinished.  A mystery about a family living in an abandoned farm house, but when the main character boy tries to get his dying town involved in helping, the family just moves away to be with family.  Why didn’t they do that in the first place?  But the publicity attracts families to move to his town.  Good, not awesome. B+

PB

 

BL=5.1
pts=4
100%

1776,
by David McCullough
10/9/10 Still Reading
The Red Tent,
by Anita Diamant
10/10/10 Still Reading
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,
by Barbara Robinson
10/12/10 10/12/10 Haven’t read this since 4th grade—the threat of planting the willow in good girl Alice’s ear was such a horror then!  Very sweet, funny, real Christmas book.  Want to gift it to everyone! A+
PB
BL=5.7
pts=2
100%
Rosie and the Rustlers,
by Rey Gerrard
10/13/10 10/13/10 Really cute!  Western tale with lyrical stanzas and really cute illustrations with their own style.  All about Rosie the Ranch Boss and her cowboy Ranch Hands who help catch the bad guy.  A fun and smart picture book. A
HB
BL=5.4
pts=0.5
100%
The Hundred Dresses,
by Eleanor Estes
10/13/10 10/14/10 I remember this from 3rd grade—sad but very good.  Teasing—and how it affects the one who stands by silently as well. A
PB
BL=5.4
pts=1
100%
How the Second Grade Got $8,205.50 to Visit the Statue of Liberty,
by Bill Slavin
10/14/101 10/14/10 Really cute and funny—the various fundraising efforts of a 2nd grade class trying to go on a field trip.  Their expenses usually outweigh profit, but they accidentally get reward money—for stopping a bank robbery.  Parents fund the trip so they can get a rest! A
HB

BL=5.4
pts=0.5
100%

Goodnight Nobody,
by Jennifer Weiner
10/14/10 10/23/10 A mystery—started out rough. After the awkward sex scene, I thought about stopping.  Got better, and the main characters were interesting.  Unfinished ending, though.  I never seem to be happy with endings. B

AB

 

Suviving the Applewhites,
by Stephanie Tolan
10/15/10 10/15/10 Great YA Lit about a “bad kid” whose last chance before juvie is home school with an artsy family.  They all come together to put on a play.  Wish I was in that “school”! A
PB
BL=5.5
pts=7
100%
In the Belly of an Ox,
by Rebecca Brand
10/18/10 10/18/10 Really neat picture book about the first nature photographers (a pair of brothers).  Pretty watercolor illustrations and fun facts at the end.  Love the 19th century. A
HB
BL=5.3
pts=0.5
100%
The Cat’s Pajamas,
by Wallace Edwards
10/19/10 10/19/10 Cute picture book that illustrates idioms—not an actual plot, but beautiful illustrations.  My first 80%– rushed myself.  And I always tell students to read carefully! B
HB
BL=4.4
pts=0.5
80%
The Secret Knowledge of Grown-Ups,
by David Wisniewski
10/19/10 10/19/10 Written like an undercover spy’s case files—bogus explanations of adults’ rules.  Funny but kinda pointless.  Maybe I’ve grown out of this sense of humor?  I wonder if I would’ve liked it in elementary school. B
PB
BL=5.5
pts=0.5
100%
The Three Questions,
by Jon Muth
10/20/10 10/20/10 Got this as a gift—based on a short story by Leo Tolstoy.  Answers philosophical questions.  Really like the message and the muted watercolors. A
HB
BL=3.4
pts=0.5
100%
The Guy Not Taken,
by Jennifer Weiner
10/25/10 10/31/10 Short stories.  Some better than others.  I didn’t like the first few at all, but some were really good.  Just different stories about young women.  Her themes seem to be fathers who leave their families, swimming as a means of hiding from problems, and mediocre relationships. C+
Audio
Book
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