Saturday, September 03, 2011

July and August Reads

What?! I didn't do reading lists for July or August? Oops! Here's what I've been reading:

Real Simple Solutions
by Real Simple
My spring cleaning happened a little late. I was just looking for some tips on non-toxic, green cleaning solutions. Real Simple had a lot of great ideas. The book is a little heavy on pictures and a little light on content, but the pictures are well-done at least.

Complete Book of Small-Batch Preserving
by Ellie Topp
Apparently, you don't have to can a bajillion quarts of pickles at once. You can do 2 or 3 quarts at once. Genius!

The Hunting Wind
by Steve Hamilton
A little brain candy for my summer reading. I like Steve Hamilton's books because of the U.P. setting and the fast-paced plot. Where a normal book takes me a full month or more to get through, these thrillers are quick reads at a week or less. One thing that I always notice about the recurring main character, Alex McKnight: he doesn't sleep much. He's always up for days at a time, tracking down a killer. He can sure take a beating, too.

Empire State: A Love Story
by Jason Shiga
I decided it was time to delve into the graphic novels collection. This is about a sheltered, home-body boy who is in love with his best friend: a girl who moves to New York to take an editing internship to expand her horizons and spread her wings. Will they find a way to be together? Will he proclaim his love for her? A very cute book!

by David Small
This graphic novel is very emotional, dark, and dramatic. It is autobiographical in nature - the author's father accidentally gave him thyroid cancer by overexposing him to radiation as a child. His father, the radiologist, x-rayed him over and over for every little malady he may have had. They told him he was going into surgery to have a cyst removed from his neck, but he woke up without a thyroid. They never told him it was cancer - he found out accidentally. Full of dis-functional family drama, this book is a page turner.

Handle with Care
by Jodi Picoult
Another emotional read. I love Jodi Picoult. There are always layers in her stories, and sometimes metaphors that you don't "get" until you finish the book. This is about a girl born with osteogenesis imperfecta - brittle bones. Her mother decides to sue her best friend (who was unfortunately her obstetrician) for wrongful birth. The story is told from the perspectives of each player: the mother, her husband, the sister, and the best friend. I found myself agreeing with all sides of the story, which was confusing and a bit disconcerting. I wanted to choose a side and stick to it, but as each character weighed in, I found myself agreeing with what they had to say. I listened to this on audio, which was done by a full cast of performers for each character.

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