Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Book Thief

The Book ThiefBy Markus Zuzak


It's just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Narrated by Death, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a young foster girl living outside of Munich in Nazi Germany. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she discovers something she can't resist- books. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor's wife's library, wherever they are to be found.
With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, Liesel learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids, as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.

My Thoughts:

I listened to this book there and back on my trip to New York.
It was an 8 hour trip there, and a 12 hour trip back.
I took several audio books with me, but as it turned out, I only listened to this one. And I feel like that is a pretty big accomplishment, considering that this recording was 13hours and 50mins long.
But it was worth it.
I had been meaning to read this book for a long time.
I've had it out from the library several times, but never actually started reading it.

I used to listen to audio books ALL the time when I was younger.
Mostly so I could have something productive to listen to while doing something crafty.

To be honest I had missed the experience of being read aloud to.

I liked how this story was narrated by Death.
At first I thought that seemed rather morbid, and I guess it is, but being set in the heart of World War Two it fit perfectly and was really truly beautiful.

I fell in love with each of the characters. The Narrator of the audio book did a fantastic job of bringing them all to life with clear accents and tones for each of them.

I knew I was going to cry.
Half way through I had become so involved with the characters, and I knew it wasn't going to be a happy ending.
I did cry.
But in a way it was a happy ending.

I loved it.

Friday, May 20, 2011

The God Box

By Alex Sanchez

High school senior Paul has dated Angie since middle school, and they're good together. They have a lot of the same interests, like singing in their church choir and being active in Bible club. But when Manuel transfers to their school, Paul has to rethink his life. Manuel is the first openly gay teen anyone in their small town has ever met, and yet he says he's also a committed Christian. Talking to Manuel makes Paul reconsider thoughts he has kept hidden, and listening to Manuel's interpretation of Biblical passages on homosexuality causes Paul to reevaluate everything he believed. Manuel's outspokenness triggers dramatic consequences at school, culminating in a terrifying situation that leads Paul to take a stand.
Lambda Literary Award-winning author Alex Sanchez tackles a subject ripped from the headlines in this exciting and thought-provoking exploration of what it means to be both religious and gay.

My Thoughts:

Sexual orientation seems to be a more pressing and debated topic.
I liked how this book tackles stereotypes and labels that are given to homosexuals, both from the church and the world at large.
I enjoyed the book, and was excited to follow the path of Paul's self discovery and acceptance.

At times I felt Paul was presented as VERY christian.
That fact just seemed like it was too predominant at times.
He just seemed a little too perfect, except for the whole maybe being gay thing...

The cover is pretty terrible.
Definitely not something I would have picked off the shelf based on looks alone.
I found this cover on google images, and I like it a lot more.

Over all, this was a good book.

"Pablito, the Bible was meant to be a bridge, not a wedge. It's the greatest love story ever told, about God's enduring and unconditional love for his creation--love beyond all reason. To understand it, you have to read it with love as the standard. Love God. Love your neighbor. Love yourself. Always remember that."

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Road Trip

I'm heading off on a 8 hour road trip with my family, and I'm excited for all the entertainment I have packed for myself.

I have a couple actual books, but I have a tendency to get a bit car sick when I read in the car... so I've got back up!

My ipod is fully charged and I have a backpack filled with goodies and enough audio books to last me the whole way.

I have:

The Book Thief

I've been meaning to read this one for aloooong time.

Dairy Queen (Dairy Queen, #1)

It's a first of a series.
This one was first printed in 2006.
It looks like it's going to be cute.
And will help put in time.

How to Build a House

I've had an arc of this sitting on my shelf for WAY too long.
It's written by the same author as the last book a read(A Brief Chapter in my Impossible Life).
I enjoyed that so much, I figure this one is worth a shot now too.

I had my heart set on taking along the full cast recording of Kenneth Oppel's Airborn, but I waited too long to get it from the hold shelf.
I went in today, and it was already gone.
This should teach me not to procrastinate so much.

Also weighing down my bag is Cassandra Clares's City of Fallen Angels, John Green's Paper Towns, and the old arc of How To Build A House... just incase I want to read it insted of listen.
Nestled in with those are my sketch book, journals and way more than enough candy to last the entire trip.

Monday, May 16, 2011

A Brief Chapter in my Impossible Life

By Dana Reinhardt

Simone’s starting her junior year in high school. Her mom’s a lawyer for the ACLU, her dad’s a political cartoonist, so she’s grown up standing outside the organic food coop asking people to sign petitions for worthy causes. She’s got a terrific younger brother and amazing friends. And she’s got a secret crush on a really smart and funny guy–who spends all of his time with another girl.

Then her birth mother contacts her. Simone’s always known she was adopted, but she never wanted to know anything about it. She’s happy with her family just as it is, thank you.

She learns who her birth mother was–a 16-year-old girl named Rivka. Who is Rivka? Why has she contacted Simone? Why now? The answers lead Simone to deeper feelings of anguish and love than she has ever known, and to question everything she once took for granted about faith, life, the afterlife, and what it means to be a daughter.

My Thoughts:

   Having siblings that are adopted(I'm not adopted myself) I found this book and interesting viewpoint into the world of a teenager who is figuring out her past.
  The fragile first steps into Simone's new found relationship with her birth mother Rivka felt real and uncertain.
 I like how it wasn't just a 'love at first sight' moment.
Even though Rivka is Simone's birth mother, they are still complete strangers when they meet. 

  It's nice to see what Simone's definition of 'family' at the beginning of the book, and how that changes for her.

I really enjoyed it.
It's a lot like a Sara Dessen.

I would highly recommend this book

Friday, May 13, 2011

In My Book Bag

Every Friday(possibly every other one, I haven't decided yet) I will be listing the treasures I have recently checked out from my local library.

By Dana Reinhardt

I'm currently reading this one, and so far I'm loving it.
It's about a girl who was adopted, and has always known that, but she has never know really where she came from. And now she has a chance to meet her birth mother and that is creating ripples in her world that reach to the furthest corners of who she is.
I'm interested to see where the story is going to go now.

By Lauren Myracle

The cover is BEAUTIFUL!
I'm excited to read this.

By John Green

I've loved his other books so far, and I've heard good things about this one.
I think its about time I read it.

By Cassandra Clare

This is the fourth installment of The Mortal Instruments series.
I loved the other three, and I can't wait to see what kind of craziness happens in this one!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Book Club Trophy

Today the Youth Advisory Council that I am part of at my local library organized a Book Club Battle between two schools in our area.

I wasn't able to be at the battle itself, but I did get an special extra job.

Creating the trophy!

My only instructions were 1. use the logo and 2. make it out of books.
Both of which I followed.

Here is the final product!

                    My work space(a.k.a. my bed room floor) was a little worse for wear after this ordeal.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

John Green

I've recently discovered the wonder that is the vlogbrothers which has led me to the wonder that is the author John Green.

I read Looking For Alaska in the past month, and then An Abundance of Katherines not long after that.
Both of them were great!


I must not be as insightful as I would like to think.
Let's just say there was an awful lot of foreshadowing in Looking For Alaska that I did not pick up on until I felt it punch me in the gut.
It was a beautiful story.
I loved it.

An Abundance of Katherine is everything I'd want from a fun, romantic, nerdy read.
I loved the tone of the narration, the characters were fresh and entertaining, and the clever footnotes kept me engaged the entire time.


Right now I'm currently reading Will Grayson Will Grayson, John Green's collaboration with David Levithan, and I have Paper Towns on the hold shelf right now.

I can't believe I hadn't found these golden literary gems before!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


By Pam Bachorz


The picture-perfect new town of Candor, Florida, is attracting more and more new families, drawn by its postcard-like small-town feel, with white picket fences, spanking-new but old-fashioned-looking homes, and neighborliness.
But the parents are drawn by something else as well.  They know that in Candor their obstreperous teenagers will somehow become rewired - they'll learn to respect their elders, to do their chores, and enjoy their homework.  They'll give up the tattoos, metal music, and partying that have been driving their parents crazy.  They'll become every parent's dream.

Oscar Banks has everything under control. In a town where his father brainwashes everyone, he's found a way to secretly fight the subliminal Messages. He's got them all fooled: Oscar's the top student and the best-behaved teen in town. Nobody knows he's made his own Messages to deprogram his brain. Oscar has even found a way to get rich. For a hefty price, he helps new kids escape Candor, Florida before they're transformed into cookie-cutter teens. But then Nia Silva moves to Candor, and Oscar's carefully-controlled world crumbles.

What I Thought:
 What a crazy mind twist.
Through out the whole book I thought I knew exactly how it was going to end, or kind of the ball field of how it was going to end.
But no.
I just wanted to reach right into the story and place the characters exactly where they needed to be, and to give them the incite they didn't have for themselves.

"In a few minutes nobody will know what I did. Everything will be perfect again. Except for my life."

Monday, May 9, 2011

13 Little Blue Envelopes

By Maureen Johnson

When Ginny receives thirteen little blue envelopes and instructions to buy a plane ticket to London, she knows something exciting is going to happen. What Ginny doesn't know is that she will have the adventure of her life and it will change her in more ways than one. Life and love are waiting for her across the Atlantic, and the thirteen little blue envelopes are the key to finding them in this funny, romantic, heartbreaking novel.

My Review:

I loved this book! 
Ginny's aunt has died, but Ginny soon receives 13 little blue envelopes from her, each with a task to complete. The trick is Ginny is not aloud to open the next envelope until she has completed the task she has been given. This means she is being lead blindly through Europe by her wildly eccentric(and dead) aunt.
There is always something about adventure in the unknown that intrigues me. The way Ginny follows her aunt's instructions, even when her requests seem completely unreasonable and impossible, she treks through and ends up learning more about herself than she ever could have by staying inside her safe little boring box.
My favourite character would definitely have to be Aunt Peg. Even though she is completely dead when the novel begins, and remains so through out the entirety of the book, she is an essential living breathing part of the of the story.
Each letter reveals a bit more of who she was, and how she saw the world.
The people she introduces Ginny to along the way are hilarious and entertaining.
I'm not going to lie, I might have cried a bit at the end.
But it was a good cry.
This books could has the potential to be something of a downer, but the way Ginny triumphs through her own battles along the way, give it enough hope and heart to make it fabulous.
It was the perfect mixture of happy and sad.
This would be a great book to read in the Summer, or on some sort of vacation.
But it's also wonderful to read when you need to bring a bit of adventure back into everyday life.

This is a book I would love to own.
It's one of those stories I think is worth pulling off the shelf every once and awhile.

Friday, May 6, 2011


By Sarah N. Harvey

When Jack develops an interest in something, he puts his all into it, making lists, doing research and learning all he can. When his best friend Leah decides to have plastic surgery for her sixteenth birthday, Jack is horrified—and then determined to stop her. Researching the surgery and the results, he finds that there are unscrupulous surgeons operating on the very young, and no one does anything about it. Jack organizes a protest and becomes an instant celebrity. But when someone else takes up the cause and the protest turns violent, Jack is forced to make some tough decisions.

My Review:

         I enjoyed this little book.
         I picked it off the shelve one day when I was waiting for my mom to pick me up from the library.
         This is a very fast read.
         I literally read it in its entirety in one(35min) sitting.
         There is a powerful message contained within the books 136 tiny pages.
         The plot seemed a bit extreme, what with a 15-year-old boy going crazy and protesting. And there          isn't much to the characters.  But over all I liked it.
         I would suggest this book to anyone who wants a quick read that will entertain.

Thursday, May 5, 2011


My goal for this year is to read at least 60 books.
Well... actually, I would like to read 80. But I don't know if that is achievable. So I'll start off with 60, and see how much further I get.

So far I'm at 19.
Currently reading number 20.

So I'm off to a good start.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


I've really been neglecting this blog... I do have others that I have been keeping up with, but I want to get back onto this one more often.

I have more books to review and make lists of and so on.
So I will be doing that in the near future.

I guess this is basically just a reminder to myself to get back on track.