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Name : Brenda C.

My Reviews

Insightful, Inspiring, Life Changing
Very thought provoking, and interesting

I loved how the author took the most tragic event that could ever happen to a human being and then broke down the sterotypes of the way we see God and then let us peek in. I found it at times, riveting and other times I just couldn't hardly stand to read the next word. It was worth the read and brings up some self questioning in all of us.

Pointless, Romantic
The story of a teenage girl who has fallen in love with what turns out to be a vampire and the calamitites that implies.

When I first heard of the Twilight Saga in 2008, I thought it sounded a bit juvenile. A teenage girl in love with a vampire, how twelve year old!!! I was not at all interested in reading it. Then it got picked for the book club and from the first paragraph it not only grabbed me it became an obcession!!! I didn't stop with the first book, I read all 4 before the book club discussion. I did not want to leave Forks, WA to come back to the real world. I even went to Stephanie and read "Midnight Sun", Edward's version of the events that unfolded. (I even ordered a tee-shirt while I was there, how nerdy is that?!)
Now, there are a couple of things that Stephanie could have worked out differently or could have been written better, but overall I think she did a really good job. I don't think Stephen King was justified in calling her work "crap". He could have strengthened and structured some of his storylines a little better also. (anybody read "Rose Red"?)
Buy it, borrow it, read it and take it for what it was meant to be, a fanatasy love story with a bit of action thrown in here and there. (Then by a tee-shirt so I won't be the only nerd!!)

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Dramatic, Inspiring
Neglected child looking for her deceased mother's past.

This book is so well written. This little 14 year old girl misses her deceased mother so much you can just feel the hurt as you read it.
Her father has no clue how to deal with a child and doesn't want to know. He takes out all the frustration of his bad marriage on this child even blaming her for his wife's untimely death.
Now having said all that, it is not at all a depressing tear-jerker. There are many wonderful uplifting moments as she solves the mystery that her mother left behind.
I enjoyed this book so much. Please read it.

Dramatic, Insightful, Interesting
The story of a family ruled by cancer and the decisions they make and how it affects each of their lives.

I loved this book. I know to some it is sad and depressing, but I thought it was really well researched and very insightful on the whole cancer situation.
I love how Jodi took this from a child's point of view and from the way the legal system looks at things, not so much from the way the cancer patient. It certainly changed my mind about stem cell research and the way people are being "engineered" for that sort of thing. It is sad, but I really loved it.

Between, Georgia by Joshilyn Jackson
Poorly Written, Slow, Unconvincing
Strange story of a girl who comes back to her home town where mayhem and chaos ensue.

It was not my favorite of the books on the club list. I am still not sure what exactly the story was about. The whole story was so strange and those character names...come on.
Anyway I have heard Joshilyn's other book "Gods in Alabama" is a much better book. Maybe I will give it a whirl.

I Smile Back by Amy Koppelman
Graphic, Dark, Gloomy
A strange tale of drug abuse, sexual misconduct & just plain craziness.

WOW! What a mess! I really like to read up & coming authors. You never know what your going to run across before they "make it". However, I wasn't all into this book. I found the main character just not my cup of tea. I see Laney was written to be "not likable".
I understand she was a victim herself of a father who abandoned her and I understand that she brought a lot of this behavior on herself, but I felt the story didn't go deep enough. I didn't feel as if I knew Laney well enough nor was there enough detail to understand where all this crazy behavior was coming from. I know women who were raised without fathers who do not act like this. There was some feeling of Laney being sexually abused by the father but that was never clear. Her husband, her friends, all suffered at her hands whether they knew it or not.
After seeing what all this baggage has done to her, I can't understand why Laney isn't trying to avoid this with her own children.Instead she seems to be doing worse with them. (Laney having sex with her child's toys, that is just plain revolting. I hope she threw the bear away!! Come on Amy, you have children.) She doesn't know what love is or how to give it to her children. She ends up abandoning them, just as her father did. Which in her case that was probably a good idea. If this is "a modern suburban woman" then I want no part of it.

Dramatic, Interesting, Insightful
Tragic decision of a husband trying to protect his wife and the difficulties that follow them the rest of their lives.

I liked this book. I thought the story was good. I grew up around Lexington, KY so many things were familar to me.
I have heard many UK students complain that Kim Edwards is not a very good teacher. Publish or perish, I guess.
Anyway it holds your attention, the characters are developed and the storyline stays interesting. There are several things you wish the characters would do different, make different choices, but in all it works out.

Boring, Pointless, Poorly Written
It's all about Denise

I did not like this book. I felt like I was reading an essay from a third grader. There was no depth to the writing. There was no emotional detail to the story. If she had not been Alan Jackson's wife no publisher would have EVER looked at this. Don't waste your money.
Ellen Vaughn should be ashamed to put her name on such a piece of garbage!!

Book Club Recommended
Fun, Adventurous, Romantic
Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict

I liked this book. It was different. there are a few things that need some further explaining, but we found out there is a second book to this set. Someone in our club is going to read the second book and report back to us.
Overall this was fun "what if..." kind of book.

A Life Transparent by Todd Keisling
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Insightful, Dark
A Life Transparent

I wanted a book that was "out of the box" so to speak and I really got it!! This book is part scary,part sci-fi and part fantasy all rolled into one. This book made you think about how fast your life can become dull and routine and what do you want to do about it. I found the characters were well developed and I understood them. Although this genre is not for everyone, it is worth a read.

Book Club Recommended
Inspiring, Adventurous, Fantastic

I have to admit, I did not want to read this book. I read the synopsis and I have a hard time dealing with anything bad happening to children. But it was a club pick, so I ventured on. I am glad I did. Yes there are some hard times in the book, but they are dealt with in a way the reader can handle. I can't say enough about this book. It is well written, well developed characters, and an excellent story. These children are captivating and I only wish I could have held up as well as they did. It was amazing. Please read this book.

Plain Truth: A Novel by Jodi Picoult
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Informative, Dramatic
Plain Truth

I liked this book. I thought it was a very good read. Although, the story was not as dramatic as "My Sister's Keeper" it was Jodi at her best. The story was well researched, the characters developed. It was a good read.

Star Bright by Catherine Anderson
Book Club Recommended
Romantic, Dramatic, Interesting

This book from page one, you know how it will end. That is understood. I really liked the story though. It was a tough time for Rainie and I felt like she could have been a real person. It was an easy, enjoyable read. Good for a trip to the beach or some light summer reading.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Book Club Recommended
Brilliant, Insightful, Inspiring
WOW what a book!!!

This is one of the all time greatest books ever written. I love this book, and the movie with Gregory Peck is excellent. I could not say enough about this book. If you have not read it, grab a copy ASAP!!!

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Life Changing, Interesting
The Tenth Circle

I liked this book, however I did not think it was quite as good as some of Jodi's other books. I like the whole comic book aspect, I actually have Jodi's Wonder Woman edition. I thought the storyline was a little less believable than say "My Sister's Keeper". The twist at the end did not get me, I figured it out before. I loved the code, I am still working on it.

The Road by Cormac McCarthy
Book Club Recommended
Dark, Dramatic, Gloomy
The Road by Cormac McCarthy

I liked this book much more than I thought I would. As I have had time to reflect back on it, I see more to like than dislike. I like the style it was written in, even though that took some getting used too. I like that YOU had to figure out for yourself what had been the "before". I know I could have not been as strong as the man and I know there are many times I would have given in to the enviroment just because that was easier than fighting the struggles. it is really a good read, but I think I might skip the movie.

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Inspiring, Interesting
Tuesdays With Morrie

I liked this book, but I do not think this was the superstar book by Mitch Albom. I like his "Five People You Meet in Heaven" much better. Tuesdays is a wonderful tale of a heart wrenching situation. It made me think of how the elderly are treated in our society and how we ourselves take each other for granted until sometimes maybe it is too late. We let ourselves get "too busy" too often.

Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Graphic, Epic
Not a Comic Book--Not for Everyone

This book is a Graphic Novel, not a comic book. It is just that GRAPHIC. Sex, nudity, language, extreme violence.
I am an Alan Moore fan. I thought this was an excellent piece of work. It's statement about hero's being thrown to the curb and passe is coming true faster than we realize. The bad & corrupt rule the world. I liked the movie, however without Alan's support, I did not think the movie got the reconigition it deserved. if you are a grahic novel person and enjoy the genre it is a good read.
The underlying story of the Black Freighter was also very good. It reminded me of those tales of the weird & bizzare graphic novels, like "Tales from the Crypt" & "Weird Tales"

Book Club Recommended
Romantic, Adventurous, Dramatic
I am a Twilighter and proud!!!!

I love all 4 books!! I did not want the series to end, I am obsessed with Edward & Bella. I think this is a simple love story turned inside out with the vampire theme. Twilight begins with the beginning and I do think this is the very best book of the 4. But as the saga continues you are swept away, you are rooting for Edward & Bella all the way!! You want to see them happy, you want the romance, you want your husband to BE Edward!!
It was wriiten for teenagers and in some parts you can tell, but it is a wonderful and fun read at any age. Give it a, bite!!! Now if I can just get my husband to sparkle, somehow....

Fun, Inspiring, Interesting
Dewey the Cat

First, I am a cat person. I enjoyed the stories of Dewey, but my cat does some of the same things, so I don't think he was such a "stand out" cat. I think because of where he spent his life is why so much attention was placed on him. He was a beautiful cat no question there. I did not enjoy Vicki Myron's trips down memory lane and these tangents she seem to get on and couldn't write her way back to the story. She seemed to be constantly associated with doom & gloom. Even Dewey seemed to head toward the gloomest people, and I suppose that is the point, he was to bring joy into their lives. Anyone who lives with a pet knows this already. Of course, she had to end it with a heart wrenching scene I would have rather skipped. Actually, I wish I'd skipped the whole book!!

Book Club Recommended
Beautiful, Interesting, Inspiring
I love this book!

I thought this book was much better than "Tuesdays With Morrie". I just liked it so much. The story was so intriguing you just had to know more. It is a quick read but it has a profound message and I was so glad I read it.

Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Dark, Graphic
Dexter is good.

I liked this book. I found it witty and clever. The dark humor, the twists and turns all were very entertaining. After reading this book I decided to watch a few episodes of the TV show and I really liked that too. It is a new and very unusual storyline, hard to do with today's attitude of seen it all, done it all.

Book Club Recommended
Confusing, Dramatic, Adventurous
The Big Fish

This is one case where I actually preferred the movie over the book. The book was okay, I liked it, but it was difficult to visualize. Some parts were a bit confusing.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Dramatic, Interesting
The Hunger Games

I loved this book! It is the only book in our club to score 100% in our club ratings. By October 2010 there will be three books in this series. I rank this series third behind Harry Potter & Twilight. It is well written, dramatic, graphic and riveting all at the same time. I have recommended it to many people already.
"Catching Fire" which is the second book in the series, also has the same "must read" excitement. But it is a transition book and ends with a bit of a cliff-hanger that I am so excited to hear about in Book three coming out in Oct. Hurry Up Oct 2010!!

Book Club Recommended
Fun, Unconvincing, Pointless
Somewhat Entertaining would be the words, but they are not on the list.

I think if we had read this in another time, it would have been much more funny and entertaining, however given today's economic situation, who cares if the rich fall from grace. Come on down with the rest of us. She most likely made enough money off this book to regain her former lifestyle, so where is the lesson learned? Just that she had better friends in the publishing world. It's ok for a quick "got nothing else to do at the beach" read but I would not take this as a serious read.

The Alienist by Caleb Carr
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Informative, Dramatic
The Alienist

At first, I didn't think I would like this book. It was really dark and gory. Then it takes a turn and you are swept away into the story. I liked the way this book was written you didn't get ALL the information up front, you got the clues when the team got the clues. All in all, a good story.

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