Bookish (& not So Bookish) Thoughts

4 Comments

images

Bookish & Not So Bookish Thoughts

is a weekly meme hosted by Christine over at Bookishly Boisterous, where we post things that are on our minds.  Head over there and check it out!

1.  I finished It by Stephen King (review coming soon).  I feel like I need something easy breezy next to shake it off.  Maybe a Dr. Seuss?

2.  I finally ran 4 miles.  Then I couldn’t move for two days.  But I am getting back out today to do it again.

3.  My daughter took this picture of my dog-

IMG_2064

I laughed so hard I think I spit.

4.  I got an ARC though Net Galley that I was so excited to read-it takes place in the National Archives- then I realized it was the 3rd in a series.  So of course I had to download the first 2 to my Kindle, right?

5.  I am addicted to these chips- anyone else?

Unknown

6. My son it taking some courses at Carnegie Mellon this summer.  I know I am really going to miss him, but he left a pen in his pocket, and it went though the dryer earlier this week.  I am sure you can all imagine the outcome.

7.  What should you get a wonderful husband for a 20th anniversary present?  I am dying- no ideas at all.

8.  Things I want to do this summer-

see Tomorrowland, Jurassic World, and Pitch Perfect 2, start watching Game of Thrones (only saw the 1st season), continue with House of Cards, and reread some favorites.

oh- and watch ALL of The Sopranos again.

9.  Do you reread books often?  I used to a lot more than I do now and I don’t know why!  I feel the need to revisit- Harry Potter, Middle Earth, Lizbeth Salander, some Jane Austen and Margaret Mitchell, and Shadow of the Wind trilogy.  But every time I go to the bookcase, all the unread books give me a dirty look if I reach for a pre read one.  I am not even mentioning the guilt from all the ARCs on the Kindle.

The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George

2 Comments

23278537

The Little Paris Bookshop

by Nina George

published by Crown Publishing

June 23, 2015

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through Net Galley in exchange for my honest opinion.

My Review

When I received this book, I was excited because I really enjoy reading about booksellers.  It turns out this book was quite different then I expected it to be.  This isn’t just about a person who loved books, and is lucky enough to spend his day matching them to the right person from a barge on the Seine.

Monsieur Perdu considers himself a “literary apothecary” or a book healer.  He feels that he can talk to a person, and then choose a book that will heal what pains them in their lives.  But Perdu has a secret- he is the one who needs healing.  He is living an empty life, haven given up on everything for the past 20 years while mourning the loss of his great love.  All he has the letter she wrote when she left him- which he has never opened.  When circumstances force him to read it, he pulls anchor on his barge/bookstore, and sails towards the South of France.  This novel is a love song to books and the magic they can bring.  It is all about how boos can affect your life.  But it is also an emotional, mystical trek through grief and the fear of living.  It reads almost like a song, the rhythm and lilt of the prose is beautiful.  Do not let the title fool you- this is not just about a little bookshop in Paris.

Quotes-

“Books are more than doctors, of course. Some novels are loving, lifelong companions;some give you a clip around the ear; others are friends who wrap you in warm towels when you’ve got those autumn blues. And some…well, some are pink candy floss that tingles in your brain for three seconds and leaves a blissful voice. Like a short, torrid love affair.”

“There are books that are suitable for a million people, others for only a hundred. There are even remedies—I mean books—that were written for one person only…A book is both medic and medicine at once. It makes a diagnosis as well as offering therapy. Putting the right novels to the appropriate ailments: that’s how I sell books.”

Summary

Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. Using his intuitive feel for the exact book a reader needs, Perdu mends broken hearts and souls. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself; he’s still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared. She left him with only a letter, which he has never opened.

After Perdu is finally tempted to read the letter, he hauls anchor and departs on a mission to the south of France, hoping to make peace with his loss and discover the end of the story. Joined by a bestselling but blocked author and a lovelorn Italian chef, Perdu travels along the country’s rivers, dispensing his wisdom and his books, showing that the literary world can take the human soul on a journey to heal itself.

Internationally bestselling and filled with warmth and adventure, The Little Paris Bookshop is a love letter to books, meant for anyone who believes in the power of stories to shape people’s lives. 

Currently reading- It by Stephen King

1 Comment

Hello all!  Sorry I have been absent.  I was taking a blog holiday.  I am semi back to work, so hopefully I will be able to post 2-3 times a week.

I am currently reading It by Stephen King.  Let me start by saying I love King and I am sure I will wind up loving this book too- I am bout 25% done.  BUT- it is SO creepy.  I thought The Shining was super scary, but the whole “it” and the town of Derry has me so unsettled.

Unknown

It doesn’t help that I am pathologically afraid of clowns.

images-1

Have you read It?

What did you think?

The Fifth Gospel by Ian Cladwell

Leave a comment

22609406

The Fifth Gospel

by Ian Caldwell

published by Simon & Schuster

March 2015

Review

This is the new book from the author of The Rule of Four, which I know I read, and know I really liked, but I cannot for the life of me remember anything about it.  The Fifth Gospel is the second novel by the author and it was ten years in the making.  It has been compared to The Name of the Rose and The DaVinci Code, which I think puts a lot of pressure on it and the author.  That being said, it is a good book that doesn’t exactly live up to the crazy hype.  I enjoyed it and would recommend it, but nothing much beyond that.  If you look at other reviews though, most either absolutely love it or loathe it.

What I found really interesting was learning that there is a sect of Catholics that I didn’t not know existed- Eastern Catholics.  This is a little know group of Greek Catholics that follow the Roman Catholic Church rather than the Eastern Orthodox Church.  I also loved the in depth description of life inside Vatican City, and the division between both Catholic Churches.

The story centers on two brothers- the Roman Catholic priest Simon and Eastern Catholic priest Alex.   Eastern priests are allowed to marry, as long as they do so before they are ordained.  Alex did, though his wife has left him alone with his young sone for some years now.  Alex becomes embroiled in a mystery  that revolves around the Shroud of Turin and the Diatessaron, an ancient text, and unveils the secrets and intrigues of the history of the church and its four Gospels.

I loved the glimpse in life in the vatican, and the study of the gospels, but I think it became a little too overwhelming.

Summary

In 2004, as Pope John Paul’s reign enters its twilight, a mysterious exhibit is under construction at the Vatican Museums. A week before it is scheduled to open, its curator is murdered at a clandestine meeting on the outskirts of Rome. The same night, a violent break-in rocks the home of the curator’s research partner, Father Alex Andreou, a married Greek Catholic priest who lives inside the Vatican with his five-year-old son. 

When the papal police fail to identify a suspect in the robbery, Father Alex, desperate to keep his family safe, undertakes his own investigation into both crimes. His only hope of finding the killer is to reconstruct the dead curator’s final secret: what the four Christian gospels—and a little-known, true-to-life fifth gospel named the Diatessaron—reveal about the Church’s most controversial holy relic. But just as he begins to understand the truth about his friend’s death, a secretive tribunal is convened to try the murder—and when Father Alex learns the identity of the accused, he is devastated. Now he must navigate the ancient and perilous legal system of the Catholic Church, which offers no presumption of innocence, no jury, and no right to face one’s accuser. As evidence vanishes and witnesses refuse to testify, Father Alex realizes the system is controlled by someone with vested stakes in the exhibit—someone he must outwit to survive.

Top Ten Characters I Would Like to Check In With

4 Comments

ttt2jpg

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke & the Bookish. It’s awesome. Every Tuesday, the lovely ladies over there give us book bloggers wonderful and fun topics to create our lists! Check out what others have posted by going over there!

http://brokeandbookish.blogspot.com

This week’s topic is

Top Ten Characters I Would Like to Check In With

(This was actually the topic a few weeks ago, but I missed it and wanters to do it!)

1.  Minerva, Molly, Luna- HP Series

We get a little wrap up for the major character at the end of Deathly Hallows, but what about the secondary characters??  Did Minerva ever retire?  Is her portrait hanging in the headmaster’s office?  Is Molly enjoying her many grand kids? Did Luna ever find all of her shoes?

2.  Lizzy & Darcy- Pride & Prejudice

Did they fill Pemberly with children, or do they fight like cats and dogs?

3.  Offred _ The Handmaids Tale

This is a little iffy-no?

4.  Lisbeth Salander- The Millennium Series

While I would love to know what comes next for her-and Blomqvist- not sure if another author should be doing it.

5.  Nick & Amy Dunne- Gone Girl

Are they together?  Alive?  Are they raising the next generation of psycho?

6.  Stan & Frannie– The Stand

Are they still in Maine?  Lots of kids?

The Sound of Glass by Karen White

3 Comments

23398961

The Sound of Glass

by Karen White

published by NAL

May 12 2015

I received an advance review copy of this book from the publisher through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.

Review

I have been on a role (knock on wood) lately with my ARCs from Net Galley.  I have been reading some pretty awesome books and I am so thankful for it!  This might have been one of my frecent favorites.  I have read some other books by this author, but I like this one best.  In it, she truly evokes life in the Lowcountry, and how beautiful and different it is to live there.

I loved the characters here- Merritt, who has suffered greatly in the past and is trying to start over in the family home of her deceased husband in Beaufort, S.C.- Loralee, her very young stepmother, who shows up uninvited on Merritt’s new doorstep, with her 10 year old son in tow- and Gibbes- her unknown brother in law, who wants to understand what happened to his family years ago.  We have southern mansions and mystery as the story is told through Merritt, Loralee, and Edith, Gibbes’ grandmother who’s death left Merrittt the house.  If you enjoy tales set in the Lowcountry, you will love this book.  I would love to know what comes next for these characters.

Summary

It has been two years since the death of Merritt Heyward’s husband, Cal, when she receives unexpected news—Cal’s family home in Beaufort, South Carolina, bequeathed by Cal’s reclusive grandmother, now belongs to Merritt.

Charting the course of an uncertain life—and feeling guilt from her husband’s tragic death—Merritt travels from her home in Maine to Beaufort, where the secrets of Cal’s unspoken-of past reside among the pluff mud and jasmine of the ancestral Heyward home on the Bluff. This unknown legacy, now Merritt’s, will change and define her as she navigates her new life—a new life complicated by the arrival of her too young stepmother and ten-year-old half-brother.

Soon, in this house of strangers, Merritt is forced into unraveling the Heyward family past as she faces her own fears and finds the healing she needs in the salt air of the Low Country.

The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson- a mini review

3 Comments

22635858

The Bookseller

by Cynthia Swanson

published by Harper

March 2015

Review

I was excited to read this book because it had so many things that I love in a story.  I am a sucker for books about people who love books and reading.  I loved how Kitty was living a quiet, but mostly satisfying life- working in the bookshop she owned with her best friend, and enjoying the company of her mom and dad.  When she starts to have dreams of an alternate life- where she met and fell in love with a wonderful man and has a beautiful home and children, we realize that Kitty definitely feels there is something missing in her life.  As the dreams continue, we see that neither life is really perfect.  Kitty sees how lonely she really is, and understands that in her dreams, Katharyn’s life has problems too.

I loved the way this story unraveled.  It kept me engaged to the very end.  I was torn as to which life I wanted to be real.  Poor Kitty/Katharyn.  Nothing is perfect.

 

Summary

Nothing is as permanent as it appears . . . 

Denver, 1962: Kitty Miller has come to terms with her unconventional single life. She loves the bookshop she runs with her best friend, Frieda, and enjoys complete control over her day-to-day existence. She can come and go as she pleases, answering to no one. There was a man once, a doctor named Kevin, but it didn’t quite work out the way Kitty had hoped.

Then the dreams begin.

Denver, 1963: Katharyn Andersson is married to Lars, the love of her life. They have beautiful children, an elegant home, and good friends. It’s everything Kitty Miller once believed she wanted—but it only exists when she sleeps.

Convinced that these dreams are simply due to her overactive imagination, Kitty enjoys her nighttime forays into this alternate world. But with each visit, the more irresistibly real Katharyn’s life becomes. Can she choose which life she wants? If so, what is the cost of staying Kitty, or becoming Katharyn?

As the lines between her worlds begin to blur, Kitty must figure out what is real and what is imagined. And how do we know where that boundary lies in our own lives?