January in Review

January In Review

January has been a great month to start off my book blog. I technically started in December just to get the hang of it, but it really took off during this month. The books I read this month included:

Loving Frank by Nancy Horan
The Post-Birthday World by Lionel Shriver
A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
The Help by Kathryn Stockett

I’ve never been a particularly fast reader and like to take my time with my books, so five in one month is actually quite Continue reading

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Book: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Author: Junot Diaz

Short Summary:
This book is about a boy named Oscar who, despite his very early success at the age of seven, was not a boy who was lucky in love. Oscar was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to New Jersey with his mother and sister early in life. As a teenager he was overweight and seen as very uncool for his awkwardness and love of all things science fiction. The book not only describes Oscar’s trials and tribulations in love throughout his short life, but also those of his family’s. It is believed his family’s streak of bad luck is due to the fuku, a Dominican curse said to be brought on by the dictator Trujillo.

My Thoughts:
When I finished this book I could only ask myself one question, “What am I missing?” This book one the Pulitzer Prize and earned itself much critical acclaim. I feel I must have missed something because to me it was just a story, and a mediocre one at best. Continue reading

A Reliable Wife

Book: A Reliable Wife

Author: Robert Goolrick

Short Summary:

In the early 1900’s, Ralph Truitt, a middle-aged, bitter, lonely, yet very successful man places an ad in a newspaper looking for a reliable wife. Catherine Land, the woman who answers the ad, makes her way to Wisconsin to marry Ralph, with the intention of killing him for his money.

My Thoughts:

I really liked this book, but it did take a little while for me to get into. About halfway through, the book takes a turn that got me captivated during the entire second half. From that point on I had a hard time putting it down.

I really enjoyed Goolrick’s writing style. I felt like I got right into the minds of Continue reading

Birthday Girl

Birthday Cake clipartToday the Birthday Girl is me. 29! I’m feeling very old! Only one more year til the big 3-0. I got many Happy Birthday comments on my facebook page, but my favorite one said “Happy Birthday Julie. I hope you get many great books!” I guess a few of my almost 600 facebook friends really know me.

In other reading news, I finished A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick and hope to write a review soon. I am now reading The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao. I’m not quite sure how I feel about it yet, but I still have about 150 pages to go.

Our next two book club picks are The Guernsey Potato Peel Pie Society and The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo. I’ve heard great things about both these books and can’t wait to read them!

Haiti before “Haiti”

With all that is going on in Haiti, I wanted to inform everyone about a book that deals with this country. Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder is actually a book I read for graduate school. I’m very glad my professor made me aware of this book because it was something I otherwise never would have picked up.

This book is about a man named Paul Farmer who has given his life to improving health care in poor countries like Haiti. It was very well written, very inspirational, and made me thankful for all I have. I learned a lot about Haiti and the living conditions there through this story. Mountains Beyond Mountains informed me about the creation of Partners in Health, an organization that has been Continue reading

My Fortune

I went out for Chinese food last night and as always, got a fortune cookie at the end of my meal. This one really made me smile.

“Expand your horizons by reading a new book”

The Tudors

DVD cover for Showtime Original program 'The Tudors'I just received the third season of the Showtime series The Tudors. Watching it is reminding me just how much I am interested in that time period. I have read all of the 16th Century Phillipa Gregory books except the Other Queen and The Wise Woman. I love her books and have learned a lot about this time period through them. Can anyone suggest any other authors who write about this time period? Are the Alison Weir books any good? I have so many books on my TBR list that I’m not sure when I will get to them, but I am interested and curious.