I really liked this! I found it very relate-able, as I grew up Catholic, too, and had many of the same questions she did. I had a very similar thought...moreI really liked this! I found it very relate-able, as I grew up Catholic, too, and had many of the same questions she did. I had a very similar thought process towards our religion, and I have never been able to accept God as the scary one seen in the Old Testament or the suffering we're supposed to do in order to be devout. She came to the same conclusions through life that I have, and she told most of her journey in a way that made me laugh, so it was enjoyable and reaffirming for me!(less)
I was afraid to read anything about the meat industry, because I've had such a flimsy relationship with meat as it is - I knew I'd never go back to ea...moreI was afraid to read anything about the meat industry, because I've had such a flimsy relationship with meat as it is - I knew I'd never go back to eating it if I knew the whole truth. I've been a vegetarian for 8-9 months now, and I don't miss meat AT ALL, so I figured it was time. And it's settled....I'm NEVER going back!
Any work of nonfiction can be a bit dull and redundant, so naturally there were a few sections of this book I couldn't relate to or found myself bored with. For example, vegetarian diets for the elderly, or reading through whole recipes (though I'm thankful to have the recipes!!)- I skipped those. That said, this was a very simple, easy to understand presentation of what it means to be a vegetarian. There's everything from history, to clarifications on the types of vegetarianism, the benefits of adopting this diet, and plenty of ideas and examples for enhancing a vegetarian diet.
I wish I could get everyone I know to read this book so they can understand how vitally important it is to their health, to the treatment of animals, and the condition of the environment it is to eat a vegetarian diet. Scientists say we only have 6 years left to turn the state of our environment around, and the single most important action you can take to improve the state of this earth, is to stop eating meat. Please give this book a shot! (less)
I'm an unbiased YA fan, in the sense that I care more about enjoying the emotions and the love story than making sure it's a politically correct examp...moreI'm an unbiased YA fan, in the sense that I care more about enjoying the emotions and the love story than making sure it's a politically correct example of modern day teenagers. And this particular love story had a bit of mystery, fantasy, suspense, good vs evil, and history to it. It was entertaining, and easy to get involved in.
Although, if you want to get preachy about it, it was nice to see a book like this written from the guy's perspective. This wasn't the stereotypical "dumb girl" that will do or give anything to follow a guy around (whether he had special powers or not). But what annoyed me about that, is those girls still existed in this world. And the one girl that had redeeming qualities - Lena - was of course, gothy and punky. Because naturally, only gothy-punky girls that wear all black and don't care to put any time into how they look can have an ounce of intelligence! (thankyouverymuch) I realize that her character had to appear a bit dark to enhance the creep factor. My point is simply that there's a negative argument for every type of character in YA, but it's never enough to distract me away from the plot or main conflicts.
There were a few inconsistencies that I couldn't ignore. For example, in the chapter about Lena's birthday party, she & Ethan kept grabbing for each other's hands every-other paragraph. So unless their hand holding only lasted for a couple seconds, followed by dropping them, and holding them again, and dropping them again...this was an annoying mistake. I know it's kind of an inconsequential detail, but when you're reading along and painting a mental picture of the scene, and their position is changing every other paragraph, it's jarring. You picture them holding hands, and then are told Ethan grabs for her hand two paragraphs later....so your picture of them holding hands then seems wrong. Inconsistencies like that, in the story telling, bother me more than in historical fact.
There were enough questions left unanswered to inspire to me to read the rest of the series, so I will, but at the same time...I'm actually hoping (for once) that the movie is better than the book. The trailers look so intense and detailed, and while I was entertained enough through the book, I feel as though the Caster details will translate better on screen. If only they didn't cast such a supremely ugly Ethan. Seriously, I can't get past the shape of his head enough to root for their relationship the way I'm supposed to...blech.
At any rate...
Definitely worth a read if you're looking for a mystery/fantasy-infused YA series to delve into! (less)
Though I wasn't initially pulled in, I ended up LOVING this story! It was hard to read at times - the main theme being about adoption and parent/child...moreThough I wasn't initially pulled in, I ended up LOVING this story! It was hard to read at times - the main theme being about adoption and parent/child relationships, and I'm hyper-sensitive to those ideas as a mother myself. I really enjoyed all of the characters, and while I'd love to see an "alternate reality" to this story (I think it would be interesting to see what would have happened had Marian made different choices), I'm happy with the way things ended up. I'd also like to know what some of the mothers involved were really thinking (Marian's mom and Kirby's adoptive mom, and their hesitations towards everyone involved). I'd love to know what happens down the road for Marian & Conrad, if anything. I'm hoping for a sequel! ;)
I did notice an interesting theme - all of the fathers (Conrad, Marian's Dad, and Kirby's adoptive Dad) were all easy-going, open-minded, men that really cared for their daughters, while all of the mothers (Marian, her mother, and Kirby's adoptive mother) were ALL hesitant, unsure, insecure, and awkward. Is that typical of men vs women, or a subconscious idea of Emily Giffin's regarding parents that leaked into the writing? Interesting.
I really enjoyed this - Emily Giffin is starting to impress me. She's turning chick lit into something more intelligent, and I love that.(less)
This was a quick, easy, interesting read to enjoy during the Olympics. I liked it, and I liked hearing about Shawn's back story (it prompted me to loo...moreThis was a quick, easy, interesting read to enjoy during the Olympics. I liked it, and I liked hearing about Shawn's back story (it prompted me to look up videos of her routines and her dances on DWTS). It wasn't the most interesting writing, however - it read like an autobiographical essay done for a high school english class. Not terrible, very informative, but not very personal or overly entertaining. Still worth a read, Shawn Johnson is a great role model for young girls - she has a great attitude!(less)
I am guilty of being completely emotionally affected by fiction - in the most dramatic way an author could hope for. So when I...moreWhat, a roller coaster.
I am guilty of being completely emotionally affected by fiction - in the most dramatic way an author could hope for. So when I started the book, I was very annoyed with Nick's lazy approach to life. He seemed resigned for a good 60-70 pages, and that was awfully boring to read. Of course, I didn't yet know enough about his life to understand this attitude. All I saw were diary entries of a woman very much in love and grateful for her husband, along side his shrugging shoulders...his "meh" attitude towards his marriage.
But of course, as soon as I began discovering details, my opinions switched. I felt bad for Nick, and hated Amy. And as the story moved on even further, I knew Amy was a complete headcase, capable of things that no normal person would even consider - and that Nick may not have been as psychotic, but he was certainly his own brand of crazy.
This book and its details are so far fetched, just like Amy's reasoning to the cops, that it becomes believable again. Very much like a soap opera. However, the core of what was happening - from the types of arguments and annoyances they shared as husband and wife, to the themes of being yourself, being honest and forthcoming in a relationship, letting your insecurities cause you to become needy in the most embarrassingly obvious way - were all very, very relate-able and honest. They were just wrapped up in a crazy, entertaining package!
I loved it. I loved the suspense, the layers, the undercover ideas, and the outlandish, dramatic version of everyday life. Definitely a must read! (less)
I was really excited to read this - the premise sounded exciting, and I even enjoyed the short story "Swim" that was a prelude to thi...moreSO disappointing!
I was really excited to read this - the premise sounded exciting, and I even enjoyed the short story "Swim" that was a prelude to this book. It was just...disappointing. I struggled to finish it - there were a few interesting moments - ones where you could feel a hint of excitement or happiness for the characters - but for the most part, it dragged. I thought the characters were overly stereotypical, the themes weren't original at all (and even worse, done wrong - very boring), and there were a bunch of inconsistencies. It was almost jarring when she was at an event, having described herself as wearing pants, a silk top, and ballet flats, and when she went to see her boyfriend shortly after (with no mention of her stopping home first or changing at any point), he took a dress off of her. Huh? I also couldn't escape the feeling that this book was just an angsty stab at the people involved in cancelling her own TV show. You would think her experience would lend passion and intrigue to writing about it, but instead, she came off sounding like an angry teenager. I also felt like she tried a little too hard to be 50 Shades of Grey-ish without ever developing that fully. That was really annoying to me! Clearly, that was a sell-out moment.
I'm sad that this was so bad - she's usually one of my favorite writers!(less)
I couldn't decide if I should read this before or after reading Something Borrowed & Something Blue (I was late to the party with both of those!),...moreI couldn't decide if I should read this before or after reading Something Borrowed & Something Blue (I was late to the party with both of those!), knowing that this book is a prelude to both of them. I decided to read it first, thinking it would be cool to start the journey with Darcy & Rachel from their youth and read it chronologically. In the end, I liked that I read them in that order (it just suits my personality), but the truth is, it would have been just as good if I'd read it last. It's a cute, short, easy read.(less)