Dusick's really not kidding when she says the pictures are crappy, but that just made her funny stories even more hilarious to me. I laughed out loudDusick's really not kidding when she says the pictures are crappy, but that just made her funny stories even more hilarious to me. I laughed out loud on nearly every page....more
I couldn't get into reading it as a play; I wanted more details and description in b**spoiler alert** My feelings are very mixed.
What I didn't like:
I couldn't get into reading it as a play; I wanted more details and description in between the dialogue and stage direction. I'm sure this story is much more enjoyable when experienced as a live production.
Ugh, the Time Turning. I generally don't like time travel stories. It's why "Prisoner of Azkaban" is probably my least favorite of the original seven books. There are ALWAYS plot holes. It hurts my brain. I would have really liked to have had a fresh story with a new villain in the HP world instead of rehashing many of the old scenes.
The randomness of Albus and Scorpius trying to use the Time-Turner to save Cedric bugged me. They acknowledge that they could be injured or even killed before they start, but they do it anyway, just to stick it to Harry and prove a point? I didn't buy it. Harry and Albus had their problems, and teenagers can be impulsive, but really? It seems like if they were going to go through all that trouble they'd try to save someone who mattered to their family, like Fred, Tonks, Lupin, Dumbledore, or even Snape.
A lot of other little things bothered me. Probably the most annoying is that Albus and Scorpius acquire the Time Turner in the first place. There's no way two kids could get their hands on something that Hermione Freakin' Granger has under her protection. Come on.
No Neville :(.
What I did like:
I was relieved by the lack of relationship drama. When J.K. Rowling expressed doubt about Ron and Hermione being together after "Deathly Hallows" came out, I was bummed because I've always been a Ron/Hermione shipper. I was worried that there would be hints of marital strife in "The Cursed Child," but they are great together in this story and I loved it.
I also loved Albus and Scorpius's friendship, and that Harry and Draco finally (sort of) become friends.
I was so happy to have Snape back for a little while, even though it involved time travel.
Most of all, the nostalgia. Though it lacks the real magic of the original series, I enjoyed spending time with the characters I love so much. For me, a mediocre Harry Potter story is still a really good story, which is why I give it four stars despite my many complaints....more
I'm having trouble processing "The Nightingale." On one hand, it's so heartbreaking that it will haunt me for a long time. Sometimes I think I'm justI'm having trouble processing "The Nightingale." On one hand, it's so heartbreaking that it will haunt me for a long time. Sometimes I think I'm just too sensitive to read books like this. There is a lot of beauty in the story, but I get so overwhelmed by the tragedy that I can't see it. On the other hand, I feel like I should read these stories to help remember the things real people have lived through and be reminded of how privileged I am (though this is a novel, many of the historical details are fact and similar stories must have actually occurred). Anyway, my strong emotional response is a testament to Hannah's masterful storytelling. The characters and their stories completely pulled me in and I won't forget them for a long time. ...more
Like any collection of hacks or tips, this book includes some no-brainers and some things that probably don't really work, but there are a lot of ideaLike any collection of hacks or tips, this book includes some no-brainers and some things that probably don't really work, but there are a lot of ideas in this one that I will actually use and will make my life easier in little ways. I also liked the fun illustrations!...more
I'm always skeptical when a white person writes about race from the perspective of a black character. Since I, like Jodi Picoult, am white, I'm not suI'm always skeptical when a white person writes about race from the perspective of a black character. Since I, like Jodi Picoult, am white, I'm not sure how good of a job she does with this book. However, I appreciate that in the author's note she, first, acknowledges her white privilege and how it limits her ability to represent black Americans; second, explains the steps she took to get input from black Americans and make her novel as authentic as possible; and third, states that she doesn't want to try to be a white savior coming in to tell black people's stories, but rather talk about something that she feels is too important to not be addressed in her writing. It's something that I have not seen from any other white author who has written this type of book. I do think it is important for fiction to sometimes reflect the times that we live in and shine a light on issues that are happening in the world to get conversation going. Of course there is already lots of conversation going on about race in America right now, but maybe fiction can provide a way for people who have tuned out the news to learn something. Also, this book points out the subtle prejudices of many well-intentioned white people, such as Kennedy in the story. I believe a lot of white people are troubled by the horrible things that happen to minorities in this country, but they think that they aren't part of the problem just because they aren't card-carrying white supremacists. "Small Great Things" addresses the harmful effects of not only the horrifying, hardcore prejudice but also the less obvious racism--that of the white people who are simply blind to their privilege and don't see how it costs people of color.
Otherwise, the drama is over-the-top at times, which is a complaint I've had about all of Picoult's books. However, I always seem to get sucked in and can't stop reading, so I guess I shouldn't call it a complaint. I couldn't put this one down either, but I was annoyed by a level of drama that is high even for Picoult--not regarding the astonishing racism, which is unfortunately all too accurate, but with other unlikely twists. It's sort of like a made-for-TV movie that you know is overdramatic but you can't stop watching. Unlike those movies, though, Picoult's books always make me think and this one perhaps more than any other. Picoult is a bestselling author, so a lot of white people who don't usually think about race will probably pick this book up. I hope it will make them examine their own privilege and biases, and check out some of the excellent books by people of color listed in the suggested reading.
I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. ...more
I'm having trouble figuring out how I feel about this book. I can totally relate to the feelings that caused Maribeth to leave, but somehow I never feI'm having trouble figuring out how I feel about this book. I can totally relate to the feelings that caused Maribeth to leave, but somehow I never felt like I really understood her. I'm not really sure how to explain it, but I couldn't figure her out. I feel like the book is supposed to make me think and should stick with me, but I don't think it will. I enjoy Gayle Forman's writing enough that the story held my attention until then end; I just didn't like it as much as her other books. ...more
BOOM! Shane Claiborne just dropped the mic. I already agreed with his views on the death penalty, but I learned a lot from this book. Claiborne supporBOOM! Shane Claiborne just dropped the mic. I already agreed with his views on the death penalty, but I learned a lot from this book. Claiborne supports his statements not only with the Bible but also a great deal of historical and legal research, so Christians and non-Christians alike will get a lot out of it. ...more