Showing posts with label Reading. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Reading. Show all posts

Friday, March 18, 2011

More Books I LOVE

I have read every (non-sports) book Mitch Albom has written.  Each seems to have an impact, to be apropos, to be eerily pertinent to that particular time in my life.

Since the books are short and sweet, I will give you a short and sweet review: 

Have a Little Faith. Auntie Monica (my BFF) and I have had an ongoing discussion regarding religion and blind faith and is it necessary today (religion and/or blind faith) and this book really hit the spot with me. It is not a bible thumping book, it is however a book about believing in something.  It is the story of two men, one a former drug dealer and convict, who as a very young man wanted to be a preacher and only found his way a grown man by preaching to homeless in an old church that is literally falling a part; the other an author who is drifting along in life after leaving his religion many years prior, until his 82 year old former rabbi asks him to deliver his eulogy. Not feeling worthy of the task, Albom sets forth to know and understand the man better.  This book helped me to understand that it is indeed okay to believe in something bigger than me.   

I read Tuesdays with Morrie right before we moved to the scorching desert and it helped me to gain and keep my perspective. It is about Mitch Albom again, and Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago, only now, Morrie is dying.  The two rekindle a friendship and re-learn about life in the process.  Albom originally wrote the book to help with Morrie's medical bills.  This book continues to guide me along the path of life with a slightly wider view and an astoundingly better understanding of the precious time we have here on earth. 

I read The Five People You Meet in Heaven around the same time my grandmother died.  The book is about Eddie, a cranky old man who used to be an optimistic young man.  He works at an amusement park and his days are filled with regret and loneliness until his 83rd birthday, when he dies trying to save a little girl at the park.  Eddie wakes up in the heaven – but it’s not a heaven Eddie had pictured.  It is the place where your life on earth is explained to you by five people who were in it.  These people could be anyone, and at some point, they changed the path Eddie had traveled while alive.   One by one, Eddie's five people illuminate the unseen connections of his earthly life. As the story builds to its stunning conclusion, Eddie desperately seeks redemption in the still-unknown last act of his life: The story progresses while Eddie ponders that one question we all have, was my life a success or failure? Did I do it right?  Great book. One that made me think. 

I read For One More Day around the time my relationship with my mom was at one it its downhill points and at that same time, I found out my favorite Aunt, had died six months earlier. This book really hit home for me.  If you have ever wondered what you would do if you could spend just one more day with someone you love but lost, this is the book for you.  As a child Charlie had to choose between his mom or his dad.  He chose the latter only to be abandoned by him later on.  As an adult, Charlie loses his job and leaves his family.  He is an alcoholic filled with regret. When he learns that his only daughter does not want him involved in her wedding.  Charlie then decides to end it all and ends up taking a drive to his hometown, where stumbles upon his old house where surprisingly, his mom, who has been dead for eight years, is alive and welcomes him home where he finally has a chance to make amends.

I recommend each of these books to anyone who wants a good read that will also make them think after they put the book down. I've come to the conclusion that either Albom is really synced with the timing in my life, or (enter whisper here) I see parallels where there are none.

I bought these books for my own personal enjoyment. This review was not compensated or solicited in any way.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

You had me at woof

Literally speaking though, The Terrorist had me at lick. And that love story led to my stopping to ohh, and ahhh and look at that cute face! to every Boston Terrorist, I mean Terrier, that I see.  So, naturally, when I saw the cover of You had me at Woof, by Julie Klam, I had to own it.  And because I've been a very good girl this year, the Jolly Red Fat Guy gave it to me for Christmas.

And last Saturday, as I was reformatting my old lap top for 13, and moving all her crap off the laptop she used to share with 11, and reformatting that computer so they were both fresh and like brand new, I read You had me at Woof.  And it only made me cry twice. Well, three times if you count that first time, where, without warning of any kind, in the first sentence of a new chapter, The Love Of Julie's LIFE, Otto, dies. Period.  No explanation. No warning. No leading gently into the badness.  Just 34 pages of coming to love Otto myself, only to get slammed in the face with his death. Absent any kind of warning.

But I'm not bitter. 

And I kept reading.  And I'm glad I did.  Because Julie and I, we could be pals. She's kinda funny, those parts of her that come through the book, and she's sarcastic sometimes too and mostly, the thing that endears her to me is that she loves those little smooshed up faces and bulgy eyes as much as I do. And, as if the similarities between us were not already freaking me out a little (like how her Boston slept under the covers with her too; and shared her dinner; and sat in his own chair when they went out; and pretty much owned her like mine owns me) she grew up with ENGLISH MASTIFFS!

I know!  It's like fate.  Or not. Could be coincidence.  I mean, what are the odds that I have three English Mastiffs, as they are my first doggie breed love, and she grew up with them?  And what are the odds that she has a Boston and I have a Boston?  And she lives in New York and I wanted to live in New York once?  And she is a writer and I want to be a writer? And she fosters Boston's and I would but then I know I'd want to keep every one so I can't, but I like to think that if I won the lottery I would totally own property and take every stray dog that needed a good home; I could go on but I don't want to appear stalkerish.  Eww. Creepy.

Anyway, this book was a quick and easy read and I finished it in one day. Which could be a sign of my amazing reading skills or a sign of boredom and how long it really takes to reformat a computer and bring it current with updates and stuff or even a sign that I have a slew of other books to read.  Either way, I liked the book. I could relate to Julie and her family.  I loved her husband Paul and her daughter and I understand exactly what she meant when she said there are some dogs who connect with you on a different plane than other dogs, even though you love those other dogs too.

This book is about a girl and her dog(s).  And how she learned to love; share; feel; hurt; grow and a myriad of other emotions until she grew into the person she was always meant to be.  It is the journey of a girl who never thought she'd find true love into a woman who found more love than her heart knew how to handle and who learned along the way how to manage all of it and grow in the process.  

I really liked this book, even though it made me cry and hold my own Boston a little closer to me that day (and night) because it also reminded me there are bad people who do bad things to helpless animals and those people really piss me off. It also reaffirmed that there are good people in the world and I send a big fat hug and hearty THANK YOU to each and every one of them.

I bought this book for my own personal enjoyment.  This review was not compensated or solicited in any way.

(photo from

Friday, December 10, 2010

Stuffs (and gift suggestions I suppose)

I'm tweaking my template. It is borked in IE, but what else is new. I've tried everything I know of to fix it. I recommend looking at this site in anything but IE. I'm in Firefox right now and it's beautiful.

In other news, I've added a list of my Favorite Reads from Amazon over there to the left. I can honestly say I've read 90% of the books on my list. And I'm not done adding them. I'm a huge Peter Straub and Nicholas Sparks fan. I also love John Grisham and have a strong like for Stephen King. Something about him skeeves me out just a little. I have read all three of Eleanor Herman's books, well, I'm half way done with Mistress of the Vatican and I cannot wait to read King Peggy. And as you already know, I fell in love with Oogy.

With all this free time on my hands, Santa is bringing me a slew of new books for Christmas. I cannot wait to read You had me at Woof and Santa scored me a first edition, signed copy of Peter Straub's A Dark Matter and it's companion, A Special Place: The Heart of a Dark Matter. He is also bringing me Room, Not Without My Sister, and Damaged.

I should be sufficiently busy until at least May.