Teton County Library Call Number: F TROPPER J Marisa's rating: 3 stars
It's always strange which books you decide to complete and which you set aside. ITeton County Library Call Number: F TROPPER J Marisa's rating: 3 stars
It's always strange which books you decide to complete and which you set aside. I have to admit, I didn't think this was the most engaging, well-written or creative book I've ever encountered. I have picked up more thoughtful and interesting novels before and put them down(getting distracted by something else). So, I can say, this book DID keep my attention. I blazed through this family drama novel. Partially, I think I wanted to see how these completely and utterly lost characters would find their way to a conclusion. Maybe, I also enjoyed the references to Jewish tradition and forced family reunions. "This is Where I Leave You" was absolutely entertaining and perfect for a summertime relaxed read!
Stephanie’s rating: 4 stars A.J. Fikry is despicable. He begrudges all town-folk of their leisure reading and is terrible atTCL call number: F Zevin G
Stephanie’s rating: 4 stars A.J. Fikry is despicable. He begrudges all town-folk of their leisure reading and is terrible at giving book recommendations. Island Books is his domain. He runs the bookstore, but does an awful job at it. He has a reason, but still - you can’t go mopping around the rest of your life, right? So something must happen. And it does! An unsuspected surprise! It truly is! I cannot tell you what that is, but I can tell you that is a miracle! A.J. has been given a second chance to reclaim his life back! Isn’t just peachy when someone you know, who has been known to dredge on the sulky side of things for far too long, have an epiphany and begin a transformation of opulent cheeriness? This book is a 2014 favorite for me! I had moments of reflection, humor, and of course, an itsy-bitsy amount of melancholy. Reading is a remarkable skill we all have the pleasure of doing. “The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry” will reinforce your love of books! Guaranteed! ...more
Marisa's rating: 4 stars What a bizarre romp! This was such an interesting story collection-- from theTeton County Library Call No: F SAUNDERS G (new)
Marisa's rating: 4 stars What a bizarre romp! This was such an interesting story collection-- from the way Saunders wrote these stories, to the actual plots, to the hyper-dystopia world he created -- overall, a unique experience. This is the kind of writing that can take a few pages to figure out what exactly is happening -- from the inscrutable written perspective (it often took me a while to figure out who exactly was the narrator and what their motivation was-- especially in the first story "Victory Lap"), to a story-line that never went in an expected direction , I found this book to paint pictures that I know I have never even imagined. The collection had moments where the language (especially in "My Chivalric Fiasco") told it's own story -- the words themselves spoke of the world he was creating. Creative, exciting, thought-provoking, disturbing and sometimes, just weird -- I loved this modern book and the questions it poses....more
Rebecca's rating 4 stars This cleverly-written tome is based on such a novel concept that after I picked it up, I couldn’t put itTCL Call# F SIMSION G
Rebecca's rating 4 stars This cleverly-written tome is based on such a novel concept that after I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down. This story follows Don Tillman, a smart but socially challenged professor, who attempts to apply his scientific prowess to find a mate. Simsion’s writing makes you want to follow this quirky bumbler through his quest for a partner. Don’s inability to change his behavior to communicate in a way that will keep his project from flopping makes you want to shake him. But his heart is in the right place so you root for him anyway....more
Joe-4 stars This book is wacky! Great read lots of humor and sarcasm a little too short though, right when you think you're going soTCL Call#: SF Adams
Joe-4 stars This book is wacky! Great read lots of humor and sarcasm a little too short though, right when you think you're going somewhere boom books over. I guess that's why Adams needed 5 books to write a trilogy. ...more
The main character of Kate Atkinson’s most recent novel is a new hybrid of cat woman. She has nTCL Call number: F ATKINSON K
Cindy W.'s rating: 4 stars
The main character of Kate Atkinson’s most recent novel is a new hybrid of cat woman. She has nine (or so) lives, spanning roughly the first half of the 20th century. Atkinson’s cat woman, the daughter of an English banking family named Ursula Todd, dies within minutes after her birth in the first chapter, but in the second chapter, because Atkinson alters the plot – this time the doctor gets through a freak snow storm in time for her birth - she lives to toddlerhood. In the third chapter, she survives the fatal toddlerhood incident thanks to a heroic passerby who was not there in the preceding chapter, and lives to see age six (or so). And thus her lives unfold, each one ending by her own or another’s critical decision, which Atkinson then changes in the next chapter. This multi-life format works only because the award-winning Atkinson has the writing skills to make it work. Although the chapters ricochet around the decades like the super-hero version of cat woman ricochets around skyscrapers, I was never lost. Life After Life is more than anything an excellent work of historical fiction. The scenes of the London Blitz were almost cinematically vivid. Another historical event Atkinson brings into focus is how vulnerable the German people were to a charismatic, power-promising new leader, after suffering blows to their ego and their economy when they lost WWI.
Stephanie’s rating: 5 stars
An astute mind like Kate Atkinson’s is more or less unheard of. She has written an incredible novel about life, love, and the countless hardships we all go through in a lifetime (in this case it’s more than just one). Its 1910. A white storm has been brewing for hours and it has finally arrived along with the birth of Ursula Todd. A beautiful beginning is about to commence, but just as Ursula begins to take her first breath she dies. This is how it begins and ends. She is reborn time after time. You find yourself rereading some of the same anecdotes, and right as you think you know what is about to happen, Ursula changes course. She lives on for a little bit longer, but then dies again. The story resurfaces and off you go. Tragedy, despair, and war are just some of the ways that Ursula Todd dies. This is wonderfully written. Kate Atkinson will enamor readers with her new found story. She has the ability to reconstruct events and bring everything full circle at the end, leaving you to say, “Awwww”. It’s mesmerizing!
Madeleine - 1 star I did say "Awwww" but more like "Awwww, what are you talking about, Stephanie?" Let's imagine a life allowed to be relived after it takes a turn towards death. You get to read all about the poor decisions of the character and the tragic results and then - magic - a do over! Over and over again. Of course miserable things have to happen to her. Over and over again. And in between? The blandest of stories. I killed the book after about 200 pages. I should have killed it at 100. If only I had a do over! Oh! Then I could have never picked it up!
Diana - 4.5 stars I agree with Stephanie...it's a beautiful story! I almost didn't pick it up because it seemed like too gimmicky a premise, but Atkinson pulls it off. Also, Ursula's time in London during the blitz makes for some very realistic historical fiction. I loved the Todd family, and much preferred them to the Granthams of Downton Abbey....more
Marisa's rating: 4 stars I picked this book up hoping to begin my odyssey into the world of David Foster WTeton County Library Call Number: F WALLACE D
Marisa's rating: 4 stars I picked this book up hoping to begin my odyssey into the world of David Foster Wallace fiction slowly. "The Broom of the System" was Wallace's first novel, published while he was still in college. I found the book to be clever, unique, interesting and pretty nuts. Lenore, is a beautiful switchboard operator in Cleveland, Ohio and the daughter of a very powerful baby food company family. Her great-grandmother disappears from her nursing home at the beginning of the novel which then allows most of the story to focus on Lenore, her sort of boyfriend, Rick, and all the other kooky Ohioan friends/family. I loved how Wallace frequently changed the formatting of each chapter -- sometimes it was a transcription of Lenore's therapy sessions, a conversation between lovers in bed, or a short story written and submitted by one of the characters. I found this to be a fast read mostly because the characters were so specifically bizarre, that I was intrigued to know more. Apparently, Wallace, later in life, did not like his first novel -- he thought it tried to hard to be clever. I agree, sometimes, but often, I was impressed with the intelligence it took to even come up with some of the dialogue. I'm now inspired to read more!...more
TCL Call number: SF O”MALLEY D Stephanie’s rating: 5 stars
As of lately I have found myself reading books based in the UK. This is not on purpose. I jusTCL Call number: SF O”MALLEY D Stephanie’s rating: 5 stars
As of lately I have found myself reading books based in the UK. This is not on purpose. I just find the stories interesting…and also the covers. So when I first discovered this book and read the cover flap I said to myself, “this sounds awesome!” I flipped the book over, read the reviews and loved how everyone described it as a hilarious and ingenious story. One reviewer toted that it was “part Bourne Identity, part X-Men,…with a hefty dose of Monty Python.” Chirpy enough? Well maybe the fact that the book has a trailer online will motivate you to check it out OR that Myfawny Thomas wakes up in the middle of a park where several bodies are laying dead AND on top of that she has no recollection of who she is; soon thereafter she finds out that she works for a top secret British agency. EXCITING!!! I’m very glad I stumbled upon this book :) It’s quite amusing. I’ve discovered that while reading “The Rook” I read in a British accent too! It just happened. I don’t even know how. It could be YOU next! ...more
TCL Call#: YA Rowell R So this is a Young Adult book but it seems more written for adults. ALL the references are to things someone my age would relateTCL Call#: YA Rowell R So this is a Young Adult book but it seems more written for adults. ALL the references are to things someone my age would relate to (the music, the TV shows). That made it a fun read for me as it was almost like my teenage dating - make a cassette mix for your boyfriend, anyone? Was extra awesome since I'm from Omaha and know exactly where she's referring to. It's a great book for teens, too, though as love is most universal and Rowell gets that first great young love. When you're surprised that they have skin under their clothes. Great line. ...more
Cindy W.'s Rating: 4 stars “Where’d You Go Bernadette?” is an entertaining read. The book is populated by eccTeton County Library Call Number: F SEMPLE
Cindy W.'s Rating: 4 stars “Where’d You Go Bernadette?” is an entertaining read. The book is populated by eccentric, flawed, talented characters who, through LOL situations, get themselves into - and ultimately out of - destructive patterns which have put themselves and their families into downhill slides. A giant mudslide actually takes place in the book, landing (literally) tons of wet soil from the property of the protagonist into the home of one of the book’s antagonists. A funny scene. The story takes place in Seattle, LA, and Antarctica. Semple describes these settings with skill, making them all very palpable – the weather, the social tension, the beauty. She uses not only narrative but emails, FBI reports, letters and ship captain’s logs to tell her story. The technique reminded me a little of Jennifer Egan’s “Goonsquad” layout, although “Bernadette” is laid out chronologically, with fewer characters and a shorter time span. Semple was a TV comedy scriptwriter before writing fiction, so I was not surprised that her technique also reminded me a little of TV comedy shows – very short scenes from different perspectives that, when well done, tell a cohesive, humorous story.
Christy's Rating: 4 stars This book is hilarious, subtly so. No wonder the author wrote for Mad About You and Arrested Development. Satire in the form of correspondence. I think the fantastic cover art drew me in.
I just love the idea of a MacArthur-Award-Winning darling of the architecture world who disappears after her biggest triumph-come-disaster, then portrayed years later through the eyes of her daughter and the bohemian-bourgeoisie moms of a Seattle private school. That comedy of manners and intrigue is my favorite piece of the book. Then it turns to is-she-crazy-is-she-not, which makes her run away leaving her family to chase after.
Overall really enjoyable if not life-changing.
Marisa's Rating: 3 stars What a fun read! This epistolary (I just learned this great literary term from the fantastic book trailer for this novel)book was quite the fast read. I even laughed out loud a few times -- a sure sign of a fun novel! The sarcastic tone and hilarious correspondences kept me reading but the funny assessments of Seattle society kept me laughing.
Diana's rating: 4 stars This is a great summer read for all of the reasons given above. Quick pacing, funny archetypical characters, and Bernadette herself, a character we haven't seen before, somebody famous in her own field but relatively unknown to those outside it, who goes into hiding a la Greta Garbo. The revelatory nature of the last quarter of the book turns enemies into friends and vice versa, and "cures" Bernadette of what was ailing her. ...more
Julia's Rating: 5 Stars What a funny book! Not that it's strictly funny; there are some rather poignant, mortality-facing moments iTCL Call #: F FERRIS
Julia's Rating: 5 Stars What a funny book! Not that it's strictly funny; there are some rather poignant, mortality-facing moments in the mix, too. But, truth be told, I laughed my way through this book.
And, while laughing at and along with the characters in the book, I was laughing at myself and at workmates current and past. You see, this book is a kind of situational comedy set in an advertising office in New York, but anyone who's ever worked in or near a cubicle will likely relate.
It's the beginning of the new millennium and this particular ad firm is losing its shorts, so to speak. So with intermittent firings and reorganizing, everyone is a wee bit on edge. And, the social climate of this office is ripe for snarky gossip, brown-nosing (co-mingled with sticking-it-to-The-Man), and, apparently, juvenile - sophomoric, even - pranks.
The "gimmick" of this book, as some reviewers have chosen to call it, is that the narrative voice is the "royal 'we'." Some readers might be turned off by this. Like, "Who is this 'we'?!?" I, for one, however, thought Ferris managed this particular literary device practically flawlessly (I didn't pin-point a slip-up), and I thought its effect enhanced my reading experience. By using "we" and by narrating scenarios and details that I in fact identified with, I felt involved in the action, almost co-conspiratorial. And that made it pretty fun to read.
This is a book of and for the new century. Heartfelt, witty, obsessed with minutiae, coffee and other peoples' business....more
Madeleine - 5 stars I cannot believe that I'd never read this. I've seen the movie far too much but somehow never picked up tTCL Call#: FICTION Forster
Madeleine - 5 stars I cannot believe that I'd never read this. I've seen the movie far too much but somehow never picked up the book until I saw it on the library's Banned Books shelf. It’s phenomenal! As is often the case, the book is so much fuller and more beautiful than the already amazing movie. Hilarious as well....more
Teton County Library Call Number: F HETI Marisa's rating: 4 stars
Although I know I risk being a bit divisive, I am going to compare Sheila Heti's novelTeton County Library Call Number: F HETI Marisa's rating: 4 stars
Although I know I risk being a bit divisive, I am going to compare Sheila Heti's novel based on real-life "How Should a Person Be?" to Miranda July fiction. They both have a way of addressing very real circumstances and emotions by showing some of the bizarre thought-processes humans undergo. Heti lives in Toronto and discusses everything from trying to write her convoluted play to her best friends and love life. While all those activities are "normal" and part of everyday life, Heti manages to describe the human emotions that are universal but sometimes embarrassing or awkward. Often these topics can be of a sexual nature (like July) but most of the time they speak to the oddness of the artistic life and encouraging that people have more in common than not. A great creative read with a loose plot and modern characters. ...more
Sissy Hanshaw, Tom Robbin's beautiful and thumb-endowed main character, has seen America. She sTeton County Call No: F ROBBINS
Marisa's rating: 4 stars
Sissy Hanshaw, Tom Robbin's beautiful and thumb-endowed main character, has seen America. She sees it through her cross-country extreme hitchhiking. Now Sissy finds her way to the Rubber Rose Ranch and her becomes a very philosophical one. In my first experience with Tom Robbins, I have to agree with his reputation - funny, bizarre and creative. I loved Robbin's ability to write directly to the audience and sort of wink at us. He did end up getting a bit long-winded with the historical philosophical storytelling towards the end. This was a great traveling read and definitely allows the reader to explore Robbins' crazy cowgirl world. ...more
Madeleine - 3 stars Keeps the Plum tradition going. It was like hanging out with old friends. But like old friends you someTCL Call#: Fiction Evanovich
Madeleine - 3 stars Keeps the Plum tradition going. It was like hanging out with old friends. But like old friends you sometimes get tired of their s%*t and it can seem repetative even when it's entertaining. Still, no reason not to read it. We're friends, right?...more
Teton Co Library Call No: F SHTEYNGART Marisa's rating: 3 stars
Shteyngart's depiction of the future is scary. This distopia is mostly disturbing becausTeton Co Library Call No: F SHTEYNGART Marisa's rating: 3 stars
Shteyngart's depiction of the future is scary. This distopia is mostly disturbing because it could possibly occur. People are constantly being judged by iphone-like devices that rate you. Lenny, the central character is "old fashioned" or loves to read and is mostly optimistic. His love interest, Eunice, is a young product of her circumstance. The title gives away the end of their relationship but through reading Lenny's journal entries and Eunice's emails and chats you get a pretty hilarious and witty picture of America's direction. ...more
Madeleine - 3 stars Well, with a title like that it's fair to assume that it is NOT actually erotica and it wasn't. The characTCL Call#: Fiction Kovetz
Madeleine - 3 stars Well, with a title like that it's fair to assume that it is NOT actually erotica and it wasn't. The character development was very good although I think the author lost it towards the end. Too busy getting that bow tied. This was a fun read anout four different ladies realizing some truths about their lives. Often funny and surprising. I would recommend it for the beach....more