Posts Tagged ‘Feelings

15
Aug
09

Book Review: Veil of Roses

n581438vAuthor: Laura Fitzgerald

Published: December 2006

Publisher: Bantam

Genre: YA Fiction

ISBN-10: 0553383884

ISBN-13: 978-0553383881

7.5/10

Tamila Soroush wanted it all. But in the Islamic Republic of Iran, dreams are a dangerous thing for a girl. Knowing they can never come true, Tami abandons them. . . . Until her twenty-fifth birthday, when her parents give her a one-way ticket to America, hoping she will “go and wake up her luck.” If they have their way, Tami will never return to Iran . . . which means she has three months to find a husband in America. Three months before she’s sent back for good.
From her first Victoria’s Secret bra to her first ride on a motor scooter to her first country line-dance, Tami drinks in the freedom of an American girl. Inspired to pursue her passion for photography, she even captures her adventures on film. But looming over her is the fact that she must find an Iranian-born husband before her visa expires. To complicate matters, her friendship with Ike, a young American man, has grown stronger. And it is becoming harder for Tami to ignore the forbidden feelings she has for him.
It’s in her English as a second language classes that Tami finds a support system. With the encouragement of headstrong Eva, loyal Nadia, and Agata and Josef, who are carving out a love story of their own, perhaps Tami can keep dreaming–and find a way to stay in America.

Now for MY take on it:

This is such a heart-warming story of a woman who now has the freedom to do as she pleases in America but still has fears due to her life in Iran. It is also heart-breaking because we learn about her life in Iran. You’re not sure if it’s true or not so you research more about the lives of Iranian woman. You learn of a culture that the media has ripped to shreds but also rings true in some way or another. As Tami tries to find the perfect suitor so she can remain in America, you secretly wish she ends up with the first American man she meets. You wish you were more like her- adamant to spread your wings, tough, and ready to try something new. The only problem I had with it was that some characters weren’t fully drawn and I didn’t get a sense of who Ike truly was. Sure he wanted Tami, but who was he as a person? I never felt like I could relate to him or knew him.

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22
Jul
09

Book Review: Made in the U.S.A.

Author: Billie Letts

Published: June 2009

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

Genre: Fiction

ISBN-10: 044652901X

ISBN-13: 978-0446529013

9.5/10

Luttie McFee’s history has taught her to avoid attachments…to people, to places, and to almost everything. With her mother long dead and her father long gone to find his fortune in Las Vegas, 15-year-old Luttie lives in the god-forsaken town of Yankton, South Dakota with her nine-year-old brother, Fate, and Floy Satterfield, the 300-pound ex-girlfriend of her father. While Lutie shoplifts for kicks, Fate spends most of his time reading, watching weird TV shows and worrying about global warming and the endangerment of pandas. As if their life is not dismal enough, one day, while shopping in their local Wal-Mart, Floy keels over and the two motherless kids are suddenly faced with the choice of becoming wards of the state or hightailing it out of town in Floy’s old Pontiac. Choosing the latter, they head off to Las Vegas in search of a father who has no known address, no phone number and, clearly, no interest in the kids he left behind.

Now MY take on it:

From the author of “Where The Heart Is”, Letts doesn’t let us down again. Made in the U.S.A. is another heart-warming tale of tragedy, life, and lessons. As a sibling, I know how Lutie felt, wanting to take care of her little brother. We all want to take care of our siblings, even if they are annoying at times. You feel sympathy for them because they think they have no other way of making their lives better. You want to jump in and rescue them from the horrible things they have to endure. I know it’s not based on a true story, but after much research, I found that what Lutie and Fate were going through happens every day. You learn so much from this novel, even if it isn’t from the main characters. I read it in 2 or 3 days because I wanted to see what would happen. I would read it for hours, look at the clock, and realize I hadn’t eaten in 6 hours. I even learned some personal lessons from it that I won’t tell you because every reader is different and will take something different from it. If you enjoyed “Where The Heart Is”, you’ll enjoy this book of family, life, trouble, tragedy, and triumph.

14
Jul
09

Book Review: The Texicans

Author: Nina Vida

Published: October 2007

Publisher: Soho Press

Genre: Historical Fiction

ISBN-10: 156947477X

ISBN-13: 978-1569474778

10/10

It’s 1843, San Antonio, the Republic of Texas. Mexican-born Aurelia Ruiz finds that she may have the power to heal-as well as to curse. She definitely has the power to attract men. Willie Barnett, a young Texas ranger, becomes infatuated with her. Her father sells her to him but insists on a wedding. To the other rangers such a marriage is anathema. When Barnett is killed by Native Americans, pregnant Aurelia finds shelter in a Comanche camp.

Joseph Kimmel, a teacher in Independence, Missouri, and son of a Polish Jew, receives word of the death of his brother in San Antonio and sets off for Texas. On the way, his horse is stolen by a runaway slave. Rescued by Henry Castro, who is importing immigrants to populate his planned city, Joseph agrees to marry an Alsatian girl to save her from the Comanches, and they go forth to start their own ranch.

Then Joseph meets and is enthralled by Aurelia. When the Texas rangers hear of the Kimmel ranch, where runaway slaves and a Mexican woman live as equals with the owner and his wife, they lynch the black men and kidnap the women and children. To his wife’s consternation, Joseph cannot forget Aurelia.

Now MY take on it:

I’m not one for Historical Fiction because while I like history, sometimes it just bores me. But when I got the opportunity to review the book, I jumped at the chance because I wanted to see if it would allude my love for history. I started reading the first page and thought that it would be like any other historical fiction I’ve read and wouldn’t end up finishing. Then I read the second page, then the 2nd chapter, then the 10th chapter. Yes, I fell in love with it. I sympathized with many characters. They didn’t have much personality, except for Joesph, who seemed stubborn yet cautious. But with a book like that, they didn’t need personalities. What happened was more important, in my opinion, that what Aurelia thought of the prarie. Being a born-Texan, I could feel the history. When they mentioned certain areas of Texas, I knew exactly what they were talking about. I could see what was happening. It is like being taken back in time to that time when we didn’t have the big city skylines, but instead little villages where they didn’t have tiles for floors, but had dirt. You were afraid of the Indians because you knew what was going to happen. You were afraid of those who lynched those some didn’t deem “worthy to live in Texas”. Vida paints a vivid image of Texas that many of us Texas had forgotten. If you are a Texan, you have  a new love for your state. If you aren’t, you will still enjoy it because there is something new on every page and won’t leave you feeling like you’re lost. Texas has finally travelled through time to the past.

14
Jul
09

Book Review: Thanksgiving At The Inn

Author: Tim Whitney

Published: October 2009

Publisher: Bancroft Press

Genre: YA Fiction

ISBN-10: 1890862649

ISBN-13: 978-1890862640

9.5/10

Ever since his mother left, life has’t been easy for Heath Wellington III. Between his father’s (Junior’s) bouts with alcoholism and literary rejection, and Heath’s own wrongful suspension from school, there hasn’t been all that much to be thankful for.

But following the tragic death of estranged grandfather Senior, father and son alike stand to inherit a life-changing fortune . . . with one catch.

Heath and Junior must spend the next three months managing Senior’s bed and breakfast, located in the same Massachusetts home Junior has spent the last eight years trying to escape.

Upended from his everyday life and relocated to a town where everyone knew and loved the grandfather he can’t even remember, Heath finds an inn full of some of the strangest people he’s ever met, such as:

* Winsted, the old, wise Jamaican man who used to lead the prayers in Senior s factory;

* Mrs. Farrel, an elderly woman giving away her late husband’s fortune letter by letter;

* Mustang Sally, the muscle-bound, tattooed grease monkey who doubles as a children’s author;

* And Carter, the silent TV news junkie and secret Harvard graduate.

And, at a nearby school is Savannah, Junior’s first love, and her adorable, autistic daughter, Tori.

But most of all, there’s Junior himself, vinegar to Heath’s oil. As Heath adjusts to his new world, what he needs most is to start anew with his father, to understand that Junior, too, is dealing with loss, and to realize that, even in the most tragic of times, there’s a lot in life to be thankful for.

Now MY take on it:

It’s been a while since I’ve read such a “feel good” story. And at first, you don’t realize that the book will turn out like that. You just think that Heath and Junior will argue and the book will end like that. But was I wrong! Every single character has tons of personality and some of them may even remind you of your own friends or family! I know they remind me of a few people I know. And for those that didn’t remind me, I wanted to hang out with them there at the Inn. Everyone has their own situations to deal with in the book, and it reminds you of our own and how you can conquer it. With anger, laughter, sadness, and family values come into play with every single page and chapter. While Amazon says its for ages 9-12, every age can learn from it. You’re never too old to learn a life lesson. You get a new found sense of love for your family and strangers you meet. You can either be someone who has the problem but doesn’t do anything about it. You can be someone who wants to do something about it but not sure what. Or you can be that person that finally changes everything around. That’s what you’ll learn. I promise.

12
Jul
09

Book Review: The Awakening

Author: Kelley Armstrong

Published: April 2009

Publisher: HarperCollins

Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal YA

ISBN-10: 0061662763

ISBN-13: 978-0061662768

7/10

If you had met me a few weeks ago, you probably would have described me as an average teenage girl—someone normal. Now my life has changed forever and I’m as far away from normal as it gets. A living science experiment—not only can I see ghosts, but I was genetically altered by a sinister organization called the Edison Group. What does that mean? For starters, I’m a teenage necromancer whose powers are out of control; I raise the dead without even trying. Trust me, that is not a power you want to have. Ever.

Now I’m running for my life with three of my supernatural friends—a charming sorcerer, a cynical werewolf, and a disgruntled witch—and we have to find someone who can help us before the Edison Group finds us first. Or die trying.

Now MY take on it:

I was in a local second-hand bookstore looking for books to read because I needed something fresh to read while I took a break from the ones I had at home. I walked in, looked down at one of the corners they have at the door, and saw this book. I knew it was Fantasy/Paranormal just by the way the jacket looked. I didn’t want to read what it was about because I knew it would be good. But I read the description anyways just so I wouldn’t be surprised when I read the book. It piqued my interest so I decided to buy it. The minute I got home, I started reading it. For a YA book, it was pretty cool. Everybody has non-human powers- werewolves, necromancing, or even just spurting spells from their fingertips. Hell, after that, I wanted to spurt spells from my fingertips! While the character’s personalities were there, they were fully known until the middle towards the end of the book. But they were there. The chase and running seemed never-ending and some parts lagged. But there was action in every chapter, even if it was just a simple fight.  There were tons of surprises that you didn’t expect. It was a simple read and one to read if you’re bored of your current books.

11
Jul
09

Book Review: Coventry

Author: Helen Humphreys

Published: February 2009

Publisher: W.W. Norton & Co.; 1st American Ed edition

Genre: Fiction

ISBN-10: 0393067203

ISBN-13: 978-0393067200

10/10 (Must read!)

Witnessing Germany’s November 14, 1940 attack on Coventry from her watch position at the cathedral, widow Harriet bonds with a young man during the ensuing chaos who reminds her of her late husband, while at home, the young man’s single mother waits in agony for her son’s return and remembers the circumstances that brought her to the city.

Now MY take on it:

While the characters didn’t have a lot of personality, you could tell there was some there. But you wanted to be like Harriet and Jeremy- heroes. You wanted to help anyone and everything. But what really got to me was how she painted the bombing. It was almost as if you were there yourself, ducking for cover. Its like you could hear the bombs going off, and all the crying/screaming. I have never read anything like it before and couldn’t stop reading it. I had to read it until I finished it, even if it meant staying awake until 1 AM. I didn’t want to miss a thing. I wanted to know what happened to everyone in the book, even what happened to Coventry. When you read it, you can just see the devestation as it was happening. I can’t imagine going through something like that, ever. You feel for the people that lost anything- their home, pet, or loved ones. It wasn’t terrible disturbing but it might be for some readers. While it was rather a short read (177 pages), it’s one you won’t ever forget.

22
Jun
09

Book Review: The Killing Dance

Author: Laurall K. Hamilton

Published: September 2002

Publisher: Jove

Genre: Fantasy

ISBN-10: 0515134511

ISBN-13: 978-0515134513

9.5/10

Anita continues to explore her relationship with her two romantic interests, Richard, a werewolf, and Jean-Claude, a vampire, while attempting to resolve an assortment of conflicts ranging from werewolf politics to unsolved murders.

Now MY take on it:

Not having read the previous 5 books of the Anita Blake- Vampire Hunter series, I will not be biased on my review. This is what I think of THIS particular novel.

I absolutely loved it. Anita has 2 problems: the vampire and the wolf. That is, for the moment. Her friend Edward calls while she and the wolf are out at a party. He tells her that he had received a call to kill her for over $500,000. It is a race to keep her alive, until other things start popping up. It is not longer a fight for her life, but the lives of others. Even though she has to fight for her life and the lives for those around her, she is torn at whom to spend her life with- the vampire of the wolf. She certainly loves the vampire, but is pulled towards the wolf. But I promise you, you think you know how it will turn out by the time you’re halfway through. But you really have no idea! There are maybe 1 or 2 steamy scenes, but the rest is filled with the dead and shapeshifters. A frantic pace of killing, blood, and murder. I couldn’t put it down! I wanted to see whom she would end up with and who ended up “dying” in the end. I can’t wait to read the next novel in the series to see exactly how it plays out. Maybe I’ll even catch up with the first 5 so I can get a better idea of who Anita Blake truly is. But the characters have tons of personality and for you fantasy fiction fans, there are plenty of wolves, vampires, and zombies!