Challenge: 50 Books discussion

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Finish Line 2013! Yay! > Kristin's 50 Books in 2013

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message 1: by Kristin (last edited Dec 31, 2012 12:32PM) (new)

Kristin | 221 comments Here we go again. This is my fourth year doing the challenge. I'm getting closer every year, hopefully this will be the one!

Happy New Year, and Happy Reading!

My 2010, 2011 and 2012 lists.


message 2: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 1. Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore - Robin Sloan
What a great start to the year! I loved this book. Kind of a mystery, kind of an adventure. Quirky and geeky. Will definitely be recommending this one to friends. 5 stars.


message 3: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 2. Flight Behavior - Barbara Kingsolver
This book tackles big issues - climate change and people's differing perspectives through the eyes of religion and science. Beautiful writing, as always from Barbara Kingsolver, and well researched. This one didn't grab my attention the way some of her other books have, though. 4 stars.


message 4: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 3. Jesus, My Father, the CIA, and Me: A Memoir...of Sorts - Ian Morgan Cron
This 'memoir of sorts' recounts key points in Cron's life, and how they brought him closer to God. As I age, I am increasingly thankful for my "boring" childhood. 4 stars.

Only three books and February is almost over...not a very good start to the year. I have some catching up to do!


message 5: by Kelani (new)

Kelani | 205 comments I am about to finish Mr. Penumbras 24 hour bookstore. You are right quirky, mysterious and geeky! Good luck with reaching your goal!


message 6: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 4. Speaking from Among the Bones - Alan Bradley
The fifth in the Flavia de Luce series. Eleven year old Flavia, detective and chemistry enthusiast, solves another murder in Bishop's Lacey. This one had an interesting twist at the very end. 5 stars.


message 7: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 5. A Monster Calls - Patrick Ness
Other reviews use words like brilliant, haunting, compelling and exceptional. Those reviews are correct. What a beautiful story about love, grief and loss. I will be thinking about this one for a long time. 5 stars.


message 8: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 6. Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk - Ben Fountain
This book follows the Bravos' last stop on their two week Victory Tour, a Dallas Cowboys game on Thanksgiving, after which they will immediately redeploy. I think Fountain captured the voice of returning soldiers so well - the disconnect with civilian life, the anger and frustration. Excellent read. 5 stars.


message 9: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 7. City of Women - David R Gillham
Berlin in 1943 is a city of women, its men fighting the war, leaving the women with difficult decisions to make. This was very well written and captured the essence of Berlin during WWII. Highly recommended. 5 stars.

I may be behind pace for 50 books, but have read some great books so far this year!


message 10: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 8. We Sinners: A Novel Hannah Pylväinen
A story of growing up in a large family belonging to a fundamentalist religion. Each chapter was from a different person's perspective. Interesting read. 4 stars.


message 11: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 9. The Orchardist - Amanda Coplin
Two young, pregnant sisters find their way into an orchard, and into the orchardist's life. Coplin is so descriptive, I could imagine being there at that time. At the beginning, I didn't want to put the book down (but I did, as life trumps reading lately), but then the story started to drag a little. 4 stars, possibly would have been five if I had read it in fewer sittings and been more absorbed.


message 12: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 10. Long Lost: A Kate Burkholder Short Story - Linda Castillo
At 58 pages, I feel a little bad counting this as a book...but I need all the help I can get. The short story was cute, not what I've come to expect from Burkholder and Tomasetti. The excerpt from Her Last Breath was good, can't wait for that to come out next month. 4 stars.


message 13: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 11. A Tale for the Time Being - Ruth Ozeki
A writer living on an island in western Canada finds a Hello Kitty lunchbox washed up on the shore. In the lunch box is a diary of a young Japanese girl and the writings of her great uncle. The story was clever, although the storyline of the writer lagged at times. 4 stars.


message 14: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 12. The Dinner - Herman Koch
I like a book with completely unlikable characters. This one makes you think about how far people go to protect their children. 4 stars.


message 15: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 13. Her Last Breath - Linda Castillo
The fifth book in the Kate Burkholder series. I really enjoy these Amish murder mysteries, this one did not disappoint. 5 stars.


message 16: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 14. One Last Thing Before I Go - Jonathan Tropper
This is the third of Tropper's books I have read, and I've loved them all. He creates fantastic characters and stories that are hard to put down. 5 stars.


message 17: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 15.Angel Baby: A Novel - Richard Lange
Fast paced crime thriller. Luz tries to escape her life as the wife of El Principe, the leader of a Mexican drug cartel, and find her way back to the child she abandoned three years earlier. 5 stars.


message 18: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 16. How to Talk to a Widower - Jonathan Tropper
Tropper nails family dynamics (and dysfunction). Brutally honest, funny and heartbreaking at the same time. Will definitely be reading his other two books soon! 5 stars.


message 19: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 17. We Are Water - Wally Lamb.
As usual, Wally Lamb does not disappoint. Intense and thought provoking. Not my favorite of his works, but still a great read. 5 stars.


message 20: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 18. Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison - Piper Kerman
This has been on my to-read list since 2011 and I finally got around to reading it. I have never seen the television show. I think this memoir was interesting overall, but just did not pull me in as memoirs normally do. She tells her story in a very straightforward manner and it lacked the emotional depth I would have expected from this experience. 3 stars.


message 21: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 19. Picture Me Gone - Meg Roof
I can't decide what I think of this one. It's YA and told from the point of view of a 12 year old girl, but the mystery (if you can call it that) revolves around what happened to her dad's best friend who has gone missing. It ends up he is contemplating suicide and may or may not have been drinking the night his son died in a car accident while he was driving. Hard to believe that the dad would even include his 12 year old daughter in the search for his friend or what happens afterwards. 3 stars.


message 22: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 20. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? - Mindy Kaling
This was an entertaining, easy read. I laughed out loud several times, but I was expecting it to be funnier overall. 3 stars.


message 23: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 221 comments 21. Eleanor & Park - Rainbow Rowell
I loved this book. Rowell captured the intensity of first love, in a realistic 1986 high school setting. Highly recommend. 5 stars.

I was also disappointed to hear that parents in a school district in our metro area tried to have this book banned and the librarians who recommended it formally disciplined. This makes me sad for so many reasons.


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