Rarely does a book make me laugh out loud and then a few pages later, shed a few tears. Beautifully written, the essays are a stunning portrait of anRarely does a book make me laugh out loud and then a few pages later, shed a few tears. Beautifully written, the essays are a stunning portrait of an area that seems forgotten by most. Or if remembered, as the author tells us, it's not for long or it's for personal gain. In such a hopeless place, I found hope, strength, dignity, true friendship, resilience, and the honoring of one's place in time.
This area of the world haunts me, Pine Ridge. I've visited a few times. The last trip was startling to me. The poverty of the area is as raw and harsh as the landscape, yet the people and the area are incredibly beautiful. I have a love of wide open spaces. You can see so far. The People here are wide open and far sighted as well. The author tells stories in such exquisite simplicity. I could have read forever.
This is an important piece of work. Well written, hilarious, and heartbreaking. I highly recommend.
(To immediately help this area, please visit Friends of Pine Ridge online.)...more
I preordered this book because that's what groupies do. And then every book I requested from the library becameYep, it's official. I'm a NBW groupie.
I preordered this book because that's what groupies do. And then every book I requested from the library became available in a big snowballing mess. And this book ended up getting pushed aside by my obsessive compulsive need to finish books before their due dates somehow make them disappear.
Hey, I didn't say I was a good groupie.
It was a bad decision to put this one off.
I'm afraid I might gush. Oh, who cares. It's gush worthy. This book is simply astounding. She puts words to my jumbled feelings about faith. She deals a serious hand of honesty, which is refreshing in an age where we still put clergy on incredibly high pedestals. She rawly bears witness to our world's failings and her own. She hit me smack dab in my pride right where I needed it.
A word about the language. I will say what I have always told my son. There are no evil words. None. You could turn any word into blasphemy. That's why doo doo head can be the foulest thing you could ever say to someone, provided your emotions behind it were black enough. All this wasted time over language. Again and again, I will ask, what language does God speak. Do we think so much of ourselves that we think He speaks English or Spanish or Arabic?
He speaks the language of love. And so does NBW. ...more
I am not an early adaptor. I tend to sit back and wait a bit before I join in. Facebook has always floored me. The things people share without questioI am not an early adaptor. I tend to sit back and wait a bit before I join in. Facebook has always floored me. The things people share without question is unbelievable. That, and the comfort and ease with which people just willingly joined and trusted is exactly what this book talks about. It's funny how easily one can go from a few updates to constant updates. Is it the need for attention, that I just don't have. Or is it the system that snowballs?
The Circle takes social media and fast forwards us to a possible near future. It's a frightening possibility that this could happen. So much of what the book detailed already exists.
This is a long book, but a pretty fast read. I detested the main character and found her a complete idiot, which was totally the author's point, but it didn't keep me from not wanting to continue reading. I loved that. I think we all know people that are lemmings and follow along pretty easily. Mae, the main character is queen of the lemmings.
Rambling review, but it's a good read. I think it would be good high school English read. ...more
This is an excellent and important true story, but I found it very difficult to read. Not because of the subject matter, but because it read like a fiThis is an excellent and important true story, but I found it very difficult to read. Not because of the subject matter, but because it read like a first draft. At times it was very disjointed and hard to follow. I want to give Malala five stars, but I am rating her book, not her. Better editing would have improved this book tremendously. It seemed rushed to press.
I enjoyed Malala's descriptions of life in her beautiful, beloved Swat. I learned a lot about the incredible battle she is fighting and Pakistani culture. The stories of the Taliban are chilling and frightening.
One thing that sticks with me is her descriptions of the culture of endless revenge that permeates her home. Is it possible to overcome that? I don't know.
I couldn't help but see parallels of the Taliban with our own religious Christian extremists here in the United States. Her book is a warning of what could be.
This is only the beginning of this young woman's story. I look forward to witnessing more of her life. She is destined for great things.
Didn't get me like Gone Girl did, I figured it out shortly into the book, even the teeth, but still a great read. I kept waiting and waiting for the gDidn't get me like Gone Girl did, I figured it out shortly into the book, even the teeth, but still a great read. I kept waiting and waiting for the gotcha like in Gone Girl, that I think I kept myself from rating it five stars.
I'm not a thriller reader, but I really adore this author. She has a way of creating characters so real, so flawed, they're relatable. I love that. The cut words? Brilliant. Her scathing depiction of small town life? Dead on.
I adored Olive Kitteridge, by this author. Surprisingly so. I didn't like the main character at all. Which I think is why I couldn't wait to read thisI adored Olive Kitteridge, by this author. Surprisingly so. I didn't like the main character at all. Which I think is why I couldn't wait to read this book.
Strout again created characters that I didn't particularly like, but it didn't work very well for me. The premise was good, so I put my name on the long waiting list on my library's electronic book site. I had actually forgotten about the book until my name came up on the list.
Yay! I thought. A free, fantabulous, recent and much requested book to read. So, I settled in, and was quite engaged at the start.
It's a good story and I wavered between three and four and sometimes two stars. It didn't call to me. In fact, I debated with skimming the last 100 pages, but then I would have missed several resolutions. It seemed as if there was a building up to not much. And the building up wasn't even that great. Sometimes this is my experience when reading a book right after one that I really enjoyed. So, perhaps this book was doomed from the get go to be rated as such.
So, should you read it? Sure. Borrow it from your library or a friend, but it's not one I would have been pleased to have paid for....more
I bought this book to enjoy while vacationing very close to the area in Minnesota it is set in. I spent as much time as I could, under the pines, nearI bought this book to enjoy while vacationing very close to the area in Minnesota it is set in. I spent as much time as I could, under the pines, near the lake, immersed in the intertwining short stories that make up Vacationland.
It was fabulous.
I won't go into a summary, you can read that yourself. But, what I will tell you is that this is a book that beckons to you. I love a book like that. One you want to steal moments reading. One that you will let the pot boil over and the laundry mildew from neglect. You know what I mean. A book that is so good, that it gets my highest rating. Five stars for me means you need a few moments at the end. A moment to sigh and to clutch it to your chest, wishing it would have never ended, but so glad that it did in such a perfect way. A moment to let it sit. To let it settle. I love those moments.