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Who is she and why should I care what she thinks? (Recent Books I've Read.)

1761 Views 11 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  MichelleR
I thought I would mention some of the books and stories I've read since being Kindle-ized and I wanted to make it a regular thing I did, so I figured a dedicated thread was the way to go! It will also encourage me to read more so I won't look like a slowpoke. ;)

1. Did Lincoln Own Slaves?: And Other Frequently Asked Questions About Abraham Lincoln: This is a nice bullet point read that is more a refresher if you've ever read more than a couple histories on Abe! I was also curious to see what people tend to ask. This is not, by any means, a comprehensive view, but the writer -- Gerald Prokopowicz -- seems amiable enough. I got it because I was reading my Kindle when a show came on the History Channel about how long it too Lincoln's body to finally be safe and at rest. People wanted to steal the body, he was occasionally hidden on the basement of his tomb under old boards, eventually the structure was no longer stable, and people kept wanting to look in the coffin to make sure he was really there. Anyhow, was in the mood for a Lincoln book that didn't tax me too much -- have more brainy, weighty choices in the TBR list.

2. My Booky Wook: A Memoir of Sex, Drugs, and Stand-Up For some reason this is not showing up as a Kindle link, but I didn't hallucinate reading in on Trixie, I don't think. I'm not finished with it -- this is my current light read that I use to cleanse my palate between books. Actually, although Russell Brand is a funny guy, there is a lot of pain here so it's a bittersweet read. The writer, who is also an actor, comedian, stand-up, and DJ, is better known in Britain than here.

Most of the expletives bleeped, but NSFW:

Whether or not you agree with him, he's pretty smart!

3. Just One of the Guys: Ah, sweet romance. Unconventionally attractive tomboy heroine who still manages to, stereotypes aside, have an aversion to blood. Chastity, middle name Virginia, has been in love with Trevor since she was ten-years-old, and they even had a brief fling, but he seems to see her as a little sister/one of the guys. The secondary characters, particularly Chastity's large family, are also well-written and with secondary storylines. I particularly like that another storyline paralleled some of what Chas was going through, but ended with a different (but equally valid) decision. I would have liked a slightly longer resolution scene, but enjoyed this book quite a lot.

4. Yes!: 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive: Another book where the Kindle counterpart is hiding from the link maker. From the time I discovered How to Win Friends and Influence People, I've been interested in learning about the power of persuasion. How to ethically make someone agree with you. Whether or not any of the techniques are put into place, this is an interesting book for anyone interested in psychology. It discusses things like why some PSAs have the opposite results than the ones intended -- more litterers, more energy use, more natural resources stolen -- why post-it notes really get people's attention and cooperation, and why restaurants should ditch their baskets of mints if they want bigger tips for their servers. Fun read and I tortured my husband by sharing many tidbits!

5.6.7. Uglies, Pretties, and Specials: We've now crossed over to YA territory. The series is about Tally Youngblood who lives in a society that makes everybody pretty on their 16th birthdays. Before that, teens are called uglies, and children littlies. Tally meets a girl named Shayla who tells her that there is a secret society of people who opted not to be made pretty, and that there might be some sinister stuff happening underneath all the symmetrical features and glittering parties on the Pretty side of the river.

There is a lot of adventure here -- girls, at least before the change, are shown as intelligent and capable and athletic, able to figure out complex puzzles. Some of the messages lack subtlety, even for young adults, but the questions and issues raised are good ones. Is being gorgeous the most important thing? How pretty is pretty enough? Why are girls taught to look up to vapid girls with not a thought in their pointy heads? Would you betray someone to escape a life of being considered less-than-perfect?

The first book, Uglies, is the best one in my opinion, but it ends in a way that justifies a sequel. The sequel gives us a chance to go into the world of the Pretties, which I think most girls, even level-headed ones, would want to read about. We get an idea of just how deep the control is, but that even the Pretty people might not be all that happy, might understand there's something more. The Specials, while still well-written and gripping, seems a little like the author wanted Tally to try on all the hats. (The Specials are a secret group that exists to police the populace.)

In the words of Gaston in Beauty and The Beast: It's not right for a woman to read. Soon she starts getting ideas, and thinking...

8. I Am America (And So Can You!): Like I need to say much about this -- pretty funny, not as funny as The Colbert Report -- not ideal for Kindle. Some of the images are impossible the view, even if you enlarge them. There are some fake letters and what-not that cannot be read, the text goes way to light a gray, and the reader doesn't read that portion either.

9. Why We Suck: A Feel Good Guide to Staying Fat, Loud, Lazy and Stupid: He said some things that made me wince, but there was also a fair amount of laughter -- some of it concerning, oddly enough, his brother helping to shoot him in the head with an arrow. Like the Colbert book, some of the stuff was not readable on a Kindle.

10. Your Mouth Drives Me Crazy: Not nearly as kinky as the title implies :), this is a pretty straightforward romance novel with a hint of a mystery. There were some moments when I thought it could have used a better edit, but it was an enjoyable read. For me, the book took of when the hero and heroine became clearly on the same team and started being disagreeable with people other than one another. By the end, I was hooked!

More added later!
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Fun, Michelle!  Thanks for sharing.  :)

You should join!  This kinda stuff is what goodreads is based on!
KindleKay (aka #1652) said:
Fun, Michelle! Thanks for sharing. :)

You should join! This kinda stuff is what goodreads is based on!
You know that I'm probably going to have to check it out, right? Like I need another board or blog!! :D
Aw, it is fun!  There is a lot of us over there, too....course, KB is still my main source of info.  Goodreads just helps me keep track of what I have/am/will read
I want to read "My Booky Wook."  It's on my wish list right now.  Thanks for the great reviews!
MichelleR said:
You know that I'm probably going to have to check it out, right?
Hope to see you and your book reviews there!
ogie287 said:
I want to read "My Booky Wook." It's on my wish list right now. Thanks for the great reviews!
I want to read this one, too!!! I will wait for the price to come down. I am sure that it will eventually...
Okay, joined.
Oh!  Find me and be my friend  :)
KindleKay (aka #1652) said:
Oh! Find me and be my friend :)
Yea!!!  Gotcha!
11. Betting Hearts: This was a quick and enjoyable romance. It's also the second book I've read recently with a theme of a tomboy heroine making her best friend from childhood see her in a new way, the other example being One Of The Guys by Kristan Higgins. In both of these case, while I really enjoyed the books, there was a little too little pay-off.

Since childhood -- yes, I've been reading romances all my life -- I've liked the ending best of all. I've always called it the "You love ME? I love YOU!" scene. (In erotica, it's more like "You're KINKY? I'm KINKY, too!") When a book is based on the premise that a hero is oblivious to the heroine, when he figures it out I like a little extra of the couple in perfect sync. The fact that I wanted more is just proof how much I was invested in the story and the characters.

The really good, awesome, neat part is I have a new author to enjoy!

No available image, although it is a nice and classy one. (This refers to a romance/erotica title.)
12. The Pearl at the Gate: This book is totally naughty, like, erotica...shhhhhh! Actually, it read like a traditional historical romance, with a smidge of the Bluebeard tale, and more graphic sex.

Some of the story hinged on the both members of the couple having no idea how kinky the other one was, and they managed to completely miss how really into "the BDSM" the other one was, but a good time was had by all. The ending was almost Judith McNaught-ish in the big misunderstanding leading to hurt feelings on both sides.

13. East of Eden (Oprah's Book Club) (Kindle link not showing up.) In the interest of full disclosure, this is not a Kindle read, but one of my all-time favorites. I cannot say enough about this novel, and so I'll opt not to say much other than I get something new out of this book every time I read it. It's a novel that is entertaining -- that's the way he rolls -- but it also makes you think.

The title refers to the story of Cain and Abel, and the book deals with this story, as well as the themes present in the Adam and Eve tale. There is, in fact, a character named Adam, but he also represents Abel and God at other points in the story. Just as Shakespeare points out that

All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts.

Steinbeck says that we all relive the archetypal stories. A man can start as a favored son with a jealous brother, grow to manhood to fall in love with a woman who is no damned good, and become a father with sons who seek his approval. Some stories are a part of us, because we can't stop retelling them, because we can't stop living them.

There's also some tasty stuff about whether or not people are born evil and the nature of choice.
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