A.J. Fikry is the widowed owner of Island Books on Alice Island (located off the coast of Massachusetts). He is certain of the things that he doesn't...moreA.J. Fikry is the widowed owner of Island Books on Alice Island (located off the coast of Massachusetts). He is certain of the things that he doesn't like, and he doesn't let anyone in, including that new book rep from Knightly Press. But then a rare copy of Edgar Allen Poe's Tamerlane is thieved from his store. And then, until one night, a mysterious "package" is left behind in his store. And A.J.'s "storied life" will never be the same.
This is a sweet and heartfelt novel that likens people to books and life's purpose to love. It is a fairly quick and easy read, but one that will leave your heart warm for quite a long time after.(less)
Don Tillman is a geneticist with high-functioning autism (Asperger's). He has never been on a second date. He's a really great guy in a Sheldon Cooper...moreDon Tillman is a geneticist with high-functioning autism (Asperger's). He has never been on a second date. He's a really great guy in a Sheldon Cooper kind of way, and he even looks a bit like Gregory Peck, but he just doesn't have the social skills to make in the dating world. Don's perspective is completely linear/logical and he doesn't seem to have developed his emotional capabilities.
Until he meets Rosie. She's everything that he's not looking for in a wife -- she is a barmaid, she smokes, she has short earlobes. Don easily dismisses her from the criteria for his "Wife Project." But Don is also doing some research after hours that might be able to help Rosie out. So what happens when two very different people combine forces? That's what The Rosie Project is about.
Spanning the fine line between the science behind dating and mate selection and the inner workings of the human heart, The Rosie Project is a fun, quirky and enjoyable read. (less)
Second Star is a young adult re-imagination of J.M. Barrie's classic tale of Peter Pan. Set in the vicinity of Newport, California, the novel begins w...moreSecond Star is a young adult re-imagination of J.M. Barrie's classic tale of Peter Pan. Set in the vicinity of Newport, California, the novel begins with 18-year-old Wendy's quest to find her brothers, who are missing surfers. Without spoiling anything, it is an intriguing adventure, with quite a few fun little spins on the original plot.
The thing I suppose I would appreciate knowing most as a prospective reader is that there is a clearly defined demographic for this novel. I think it's safe to say that some of the concepts and prerogatives would more closely align with a 12-18 year-old demographic than someone in her mid-30's. But with that aside, the comparisons and contrasts with Barrie's tale were fun to make and the novel had some really interesting themes that are absolutely relevant to its intended target audience. With that said, I think that if I had a middle or high school aged daughter, I would recommend this book to her and expect her to enjoy this book even more than I did.
(Please note: I received an advance copy of this novel from NetGalley.com in exchange for my honest review. The expected publication date of this novel is May 13, 2014.)
Warning: If you haven't read Stargirl first, you won't want to read this review because it contains SPOILERS!!!
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Don't read past...moreWarning: If you haven't read Stargirl first, you won't want to read this review because it contains SPOILERS!!!
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Don't read past here if you don't want to expose spoilers/secrets!!! You've been warned.
Love, Stargirl is the answer to the burning questions left unanswered at the conclusion of Stargirl. This means that, once Stargirl leaves Mica, Arizona, her story continues in a new setting, which is a mystery up until a couple of chapters into the sequel. In her new town, she meets some interesting characters: a precocious 5-year-old named Dootsie who becomes her best friend, a rough-and-tumble eleven-year-old girl who is caught between child and woman and hasn't had a chance to even out the rough edges, a reclusive agoraphobic neighbor who spends her days in purple bathrobes and bright red slipper socks, a mysterious dark-haired, a widower named Charles who has lost the love of his life after fifty-plus years of marriage, and a blue-eyed male figure who may be just what Stargirl needs to take her mind off Leo and all that she left behind.
The colorful cast of characters, the new small-town setting, the quirky journal/letters to Leo and the multitude of side-projects that keep Stargirl busy are all bundled up into a totally digestible and utterly delightful young adult novel about friends, family, love interests and the ties that bind them all up into a beautiful bouquet of pages. This is ideal reading for those who have ever wondered what happens after the last pages of a love story, and it's a great complement to the premier novel. I'd read more of these Stargirl books if the author was interested in making them a full-blown series. (Hint, hint!)(less)
Once in a while, a book comes along that makes us both happy and sad, leaving us with bittersweet tears of closure. This is the story of Leo Borlock,...moreOnce in a while, a book comes along that makes us both happy and sad, leaving us with bittersweet tears of closure. This is the story of Leo Borlock, a high school boy who loves porcupine neckties and has the budding ambition of a television director/producer. But more than that, it's about how his life changes when he meets Stargirl, a ukelele-strumming, pet-rat toting, hippy skirt wearing girl. Some people come into our lives and change them for a reason or a season, and they are never, ever forgotten. Stargirl is this person for Leo.
This is a short, simple read intended for young adults, but I truly enjoyed the setting, characters and the message that resonated through this book. It's about marching to the beat of your own drummer, being an individual and finding ways to brighten the lives of others. And it's also about the impact that our relationships with other people have upon our lives, and the ripples that continue for years afterwards.(less)
A book of post-modern photography and prose, I Wrote This For You is easily digestible in a short time, but it is one of those books you'll want to re...moreA book of post-modern photography and prose, I Wrote This For You is easily digestible in a short time, but it is one of those books you'll want to read again and again. Some of the words were so truthful, it was as if they could have come right out of my own mouth or could have been written to me by someone in all-too-applicable circumstances. I think what I like the most about the book is the honesty and the candor. I imagine that anyone who picks up this book can identify in some way. I imagine that this blog-turned-book is going to continue to be relevant for quite some time. I look forward to reading the next of Mr. Thomas's writings.(less)