read last week

I plowed through 4 more books during the last week!  I’ve been on a roll recently!  Helps that they were all quick reads, and most of my tv shows were re-runs so I had more time for reading 🙂

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)

So I know I am a decade late on this one, but better late than never, right?  I needed to read a book by a British author for my book club, and this series has been on my to-read list for a long time.  I was holding out for them to be available on the Nook next year, but I saw my sister last weekend and she was kind enough to loan me the first 3 books of the series.  I was able to read this one in an afternoon, and it was much better than I was anticipating as it is really not my typical genre.  Pretty sure I will read the rest of the series, but not right away.  I’m renting the movie from the library to see how it compares!

Room by Emma Donoghue

Room

Oh lord.  This book…I thought I would like it because I’d read Jaycee Dugard’s “A Stolen Life” recently and this novel is the story of a 5 year old born and raised in a room where his mother has been held captive, like Jaycee.  They have a tv so they have some access to the outside world that way, but the child really doesn’t believe that a world exists outside the room he lives in.  So during the first third you read all about his “room” and their daily life there.  [spoilers ahead] During the second third you read about their escape and the days after, and then the last part of the book is about their transition back into the “outside world”, rebuilding relationships, going through therapy, and letting go of the “room.”  Very interesting story, but sometimes the kid’s “voice” gets very irritating.  I was puzzled how the kid had such a good vocabulary yet spoke TERRIBLY despite conversing with his mom regularly (and she spoke properly) and watching lots of tv.  Also some stuff made me squeamish: the kid’s constant chatter about his love of breastfeeding (his mom practiced extended breastfeeding for the health benefits and as a comfort measure, best as I could tell), and a lot of talk of him sucking on his mom’s dead, rotted tooth.   The eff.  Leave that stuff out and I would have enjoyed this book more, lol.

Shine by Lauren Myracle

Shine

I learned about this book a couple of weeks ago when I read about the total cluster going on with the National Book Awards.  This is a young adult novel about a girl in a poverty stricken southern town that is searching for the perpitrator of a heinous hate crime against her gay friend.  This is an excellent book.  I was drawn in by her character descriptions and the fast pacing of the story.  A couple of times I thought I had the crime figured out but she surprised me!  Parts of the story reminded me of Winter’s Bone, although this book was not quite so dark.  Definitely recommend this one.  It was nice to read a YA novel that was not all about a teen romance.

Battle Hymn of a Tiger Mother by Amy Chua

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

I was expecting to really have to force myself to read this one, but once I started I couldn’t put it down and I finished in about 2 hours. The chapters are short and the book is not terribly long.  I read the much hyped article in the WSJ that consisted of only the most eyebrow raising excerpts from this book.   That article really didn’t capture the spirit of the  book though, which is a combination of sarcasm, satire, and the highs and lows of a family. It’s not really a guide to how to raise your kids the Chinese way or why that’s the best way to raise a child.  I gave this one 4 stars.

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