Sunday, December 30, 2012

50 States Challenge 2014

I came across a book challenge, the 50 States Challenge 2013, on Book Obsessed which sounded like a lot of fun to me. Of course, as always, I'm a year late, so I'm going to try to do this THIS year.

The goal: To read a book set in every state over the course of the next year.

I'm gonna give it a shot. Who's with me?

The idea came from here, but I'm sure sign-up is waaay over:
Book Obsessed

I will keep track of my progress here!

New Hampshire:
New Jersey:
New Mexico:
New York:
North Carolina:
North Dakota:
Rhode Island:
South Carolina: The Invention of Wings - Sue Monk Kidd
South Dakota:
West Virginia:

Sunday, September 2, 2012



Author: John Verdon

Publisher: Crown Publishers

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-307-58892-0

Audience: Adult

Setting: Upstate NY

1st Sentence:
"Where were you?" said the old woman in the bed.

Why I chose this book: It is the debut novel by Verdon and it had a good premise. And it had a book trailer. I love book trailers.

Why I read it to the end: I thought for a first time book he did a bang up job. It also was a book I purchased personally and planned to donate to the library so I wanted to read it before doing so. Books have a habit of disappearing from the library. This one is still there, but you never really know...

Rating: 4.5/5

May #2 - TOYS

Title: TOYS

Author: James Patterson and Neil McMahon

Publisher: Little, Brown & Co.

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-316-09736-9

Audience: Adult

Setting: New Lake City, Year 2061

1st Sentence:
7-4 day
I will not forget this moment for as long as I live, which, in truth, might not be that long anyway.

Why I chose this book: I was hesitant about reading this book because it's not of any of Patterson's series, it's definitely not typical Patterson, but the chapters were his one page wonders so I figured I wouldn't have to invest in a lot before I knew whether or not I would like it even a little bit.

Why I read it to the end: I actually enjoyed this book. The book is set in the future and the world is made up of humans, who are the scourge of the earth, and the Elites, perfect, strong, rich and genetically modified. Hays is an Elite. Or so he thinks. This book had a quality that reminds me of life as we know it. People who are richer, stronger and think they are better than us and the rest of us humans. I actually hope there is more to this story.

Rating: 4/5

May 2011 #1 - BUNNICULA


Author: James Howe

Publisher: Scholatic Inc.

Copyright: 1979

ISBN: 0-590-31318-5

Audience: Juvenile

Setting: The Monroe's household

1st Sentence:
I shall never forget the first time I laid these now tired eyes on our visitor.

Why I chose this book: One of my youth patrons came in and said their friend was reading a book about some vampire rabbit and did I know anything about it and did we have it. Of course we did! So I sent her out with the book and when she returned it, I checked it out because I realized I had never read it or if I had, it had been a very long time since.

Why I read it to the end: I was about 8 pages into it and realized I had read it when I was a kid, but wanted to refresh my memory. "Today vegetables! Tomorrow...the world!" I think it's a great story for kids.

Rating: 4/5

Elizabeth and Lyric

Well, I feel like I got substantially caught up but will work on getting the rest of my year's books posted.

Before I begin with the next month though, I want to pause and post some information about some girls who were abducted from our small community.

The went missing July 13th and a week later, after a lake in town was drained and it was ruled out that they were in the lake even though that is where their bikes were found, they were classified as an abduction.

Right away, national news media were notified of their disappearance and their search became a nation wide event.

It's been 50 days and there has been no viable information given to bring these girls home. The FBI, DCI and local agencies have been working on this and nothing! The community is saddened and frustrated and just want them home.

If you know anything or have seen anything, please call. We need to bring Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook home!

Saturday, September 1, 2012



Author: Pittacus Lore

Publisher: Harper Collins

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-06-196955-3

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: Paradise, OH

1st Sentence:
The door starts shaking.

Why I chose this book: The movie was coming out and I was interested in seeing it, but I almost always read the book first.

Why I read it to the end: As a librarian, I have always tried to read a little bit of everything. There are some things of which I read little; science fiction and westerns. Even though this is young adult fiction, it does fall into the category of science fiction with aliens and intergalactic war so I thought I'd try it...and LOVED it! (I enjoyed the movie, too!)

Rating: 4.75/5

April #5 - DEAD CITY


Author: Joe McKinney

Publisher: Pinnacle Books

Copyright: 2006, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-7860-2358-5

Audience: Adult

Setting: San Antonio, TX

1st Sentence:
There's an empty parking lot near the corner of Seafarer and Rood where I used to go to fight with my wife.

Why I chose this book: Zombies, zombies, zombies.

Why I read it to the end: Zombies, zombies, zombies! It was like reading an episode of THE WALKING DEAD, my favorite show on TV these days.

Rating: 4.5/5



Author: Siobhan Fallon

Publisher: Amy Einhorn/GP Putnam's Sons

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-1-101-48641-6

Audience: Adult

Setting: Fort Hood, TX

1st Sentence:
In Fort Hood housing, like all army housing, you get used to hearing through the walls.

Why I chose this book: I was having a distracting week at work and this book was short stories so I thought it would be a good read.

Why I read it to the end: It was only eight short stories about the effect of the war in Afghanistan and Iraq as it pertains to those from Fort Hood where the author lived. It showed how the wives hold it together -- or not. How the soldiers are affected. It was a very sobering read. There could have been more stories and I would have been satisfied.

Rating: 4/5



Author: Stephanie Kallos

Publisher: Kindle edition

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 0871139634

Audience: Adult

Setting: Emlyn Springs, NE

1st Sentence:
It's so hard to explain what the dead really want.

Why I chose this book: It was our book discussion book as well as the All Iowa Reads selection for 2011.

Why I read it to the end: There is a definitive story in the book but the thing that I focused on was the title of the book haling from the Welsh tradition gymanfa ganu, a singing in unison and four part harmony of Welsh traditional hymns. For the book's purpose, it was to honor the dead - an extended wake if you will. While I have not found that it is specifically to honor the dead, what I've read is that it usually happens in get-togethers of more than four people and typically you would find that in the case of someone's death. I thought it somewhat morbid but the musical side of me was overcome by the beauty of this concept of 'singing someone home' after they had passed on. The family dynamics of the book were also spellbinding and Midwest weather was a big part of the story.

Rating: 4.5/5

April #2 - EXPOSED


Author: Kimberly Marcus

Publisher: Random House

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-375-86693-7

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: Shoreview, MA (Near Martha's Vineyard ferry)

1st Sentence:
I am the first one here.

Why I chose this book: The book is written in verse and that is something that is relatively new to me. The main character is Liz aka Photogirl. As an aspiring/hobbyist photographer, for a long time I was called Paparazzi because I was always shooting pictures of people at parties. The title and cover eluded to photography but the content was a lot darker than photography.

Why I read it to the end: It was a fast read because of the verse and the storyline had me captured.

One section really grabbed me:

My mother has pinned
all her hopes on me.
And I can't pull out
the pins.

Rating: 4.5/5

April 2011 #1 - LOVE YOU MORE


Author: Lisa Gardner

Publisher: Bantam Books

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-553-80725-7

Audience: Adult

Setting: Boston, MA area

1st Sentence:
Who do you love?

Why I chose this book: This book is 5th in the series and I've read the four previous novels.

Why I read it to the end: I love Lisa Gardner books. It's like the anticipation of seeing a friend you haven't seen for a year. I get giddy when a new book comes out.

Rating: 4.75/5



Author: David Lubar

Publisher: Tom Doherty & Assoc.

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-7653-1634-9

Audience: Juvenile

Setting: East Craven, NJ

1st Sentence:
It's no fun having your heart ripped from your body, slammed to the floor, and stomped into a puddle of quivering red mush.

Why I chose this book: I'm a zombie kick and read and collect all sorts of zomfic and zombie non-fic.

Why I read it to the end: It was a cute and fast read about 5th grade Nathan who, tired of being bullied and hurt, undergoes an experiment that wrongly turns him into a zombie. There are definite advantages, but in a race to find a cure, he realizes that it's not all it's cracked up to be, until a decision to be made counts the most. This book is the first in a series. I have not read any of the others yet.

Rating: 3/5

March #2 - TRAPPED


Author: Michael Northrup

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-545-21012-6

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: Rural New England, Tattawa Regional High School

1st Sentence:
We were the last seven kids waiting around to get picked up from Tattawa Regional High School.

Why I chose this book: I usually read at least ONE inclement weather book during the winter time and a blizzard book in March just sounded right at the time.

Why I read it to the end: I liked that the author actualized the dire situation with what typical teenagers without adults around would do and how the environment of the school still resonates with the cliques left in the hallways. In the book, nature is the enemy. The ending left me a little cold though, because it was open ended. I don't know if there is plans for a TRAPPED 2. We'll see...

Rating: 3.75/5

March 2011 #1 - ON MAGGIE'S WATCH


Author: Ann Wertz Garvin

Publisher: Penguin Group

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-425-23678-9

Audience: Adult

Setting: Wisconsin

1st Sentence:
"Wash your hands and say your prayers, 'cause Jesus and germs are everywhere!"

Why I chose this book: This book was for my library's book discussion group and it was a book I chose because it was a debut novel which I love to read.

Why I read it to the end: The book was slow starting out as Maggie, seven months pregnant, moves home to her small town in Wisconsin and revitalizes the Neighborhood Watch. Good thing because there is a sex offender in their midst. As the book progressed it picked up steam and by the last page I was sad to say goodbye to the quirky characters. The other members of the book discussion group did not like it and found Maggie to be a very one dimensional character without many likeable qualities. But I know pregnant ladies can get weird so maybe that was her deal...

Rating: 3/5



Author: Heather Gudenkauf

Publisher: Mira

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-7783-2879-7

Audience: Adult

Setting: Linden Falls, IA

1st Sentence:
I stand when I see Devin Kineally walking toward me, dressed as usual in her lawyer-gray suit, her high heels clicking against the tile floor.

Why I chose this book: The author is an Iowan and we buy all her books for our library and I read them all. Plus, I think she's a great author.

Why I read it to the end: The story is told in alternating POV chapters. The book is all about secrets with a storyline that could easily have been ripped from the headlines of my town.

Rating: 5/5 - One of my favorite books of 2011.

February #5 - TICK TOCK


Author: James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge

Publisher: Little, Brown & Co.

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-316-03791-4

Audience: Adult

Setting: New York, NY

1st Sentence:
Like the luxury co-ops and five-star, French eateries located in Manhattan's Silk Stocking District, Benchley East Side Parking was outrageously exclusive.

Why I chose this book: Of the Patterson series, the Michael Bennett series is my favorite and this is #4.

Why I read it to the end: Patterson books are what they are, as I've mentioned before. They are quick mindless reads and I read them because his short one-page chapters make me feel like I'm accomplishing something. Despite that short scathing review, he is one of my favorite authors and writes a thrilling and fast paced story. They just don't have a lot of depth to them. So, if you're new to Patterson and are expecting TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, stop and go look for something else. But if you're looking for some fun, try this series. But I recommend starting with #1, STEP ON A CRACK.

February #4 - ME AND EMMA


Author: Elizabeth Flock

Publisher: Mira

Copyright: 2005

ISBN: 978-0-7783-2082-1

Audience: Adult

Setting: Toast, NC

1st Sentence:
The first time Richard hit me I saw stars in front of my eyes just like they do in cartoons.

Why I chose this book: This was the third book chosen for our book discussion group. I actually chose this book because it had been on my TBR list for a long time and I wanted something different from the other books we'd read. I found by reading this book that I truly enjoy southern fiction.

Why I read it to the end: The depressed childhood that the main characters had made for some lively discussion and it was fun hunting down some candy from the 1950's to share with the group as we always share food at our discussions. Flock's stand-alone follow up to this book, WHAT HAPPENED TO MY SISTER was just published in August and has made my TBR list as well.

My rating: 4/5

February #3 - FLIP THIS ZOMBIE


Author: Jesse Petersen

Publisher: Orbit

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-0-316-10295-7

Audience: Adult

Setting: Phoenix, AZ

1st Sentence:
When the zombie plague struck, I was just an office schlub.

Why I chose this book: I loved the first book MARRIED WITH ZOMBIES. Unfortunately, I had to wait for them to actually be published before I could read the next ones.

Why I read it to the end: David and Sarah have started Zombiebusters Extermination Inc. and are working with a doctor to save the world. It was a good, fast read, although for rating purposes, I did enjoy the first book better.

My rating: 4.5/5



Author: Katherine Paterson

Publisher: Harper Trophy

Copyright: 1978

ISBN: 978-0-06-440201-9

Audience: Juvenile

Setting: Thompson Park, MD

1st Sentence:
"Gilly," said Miss Harris with a shake of her long blonde hair toward the passenger in the back seat.

Why I chose this book: I had to replace our library's copy because it was falling apart and when the new copy came in, I decided it had been a long time since I read it last.

Why I read it to the end: This was a favorite book from my childhood. It gave me my first glimpse into the life of the foster system and I remember admiring Gilly's sassiness. May be where I got mine...

My rating: 4.5/5

February 2011 #1 - LEFT NEGLECTED


Author: Lisa Genova

Publisher: Gallery Books

Copyright: 2011

ISBN: 978-1-4391-6463-1

Audience: Adult

Setting: Welmont, MA

1st Sentence:
I think some small part of me knew I was living an unsustainable life.

Why I chose this book: I wanted to read Genova's first book, STILL ALICE, but couldn't bring myself to because of the Alzheimer's disease angle, and living with my granmother's disease made reading about it just too raw. I thought I'd give this book a shot first.

Why I read it to the end: Sarah is a very busy woman - and one day, while commuting to work she is in a car accident, sustaining a head injury that causes a condition called left neglect. This condition does not allow the brain to register that which is on the left. This topic was new to me as far as medical fiction goes and I was totally enthralled by it. The book travels through Sarah's rehab, her reconnect with family and her shift in priorities. I thought the book was similar to Jodi Picoult in writing style and would recommend it to my patrons who enjoy Picoult's work.
This was one of my favorite books of 2011.

My rating: 5/5



Author: Dean Koontz

Publisher: Bantam Books

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-553-80772-1

Audience: Adult

Setting: On a train from D.C. to California

1st Sentence:
What year these events transpired is of no consequence.

Why I chose this book: A write-up made it sound good, which has to say a lot because I have boycotted Koontz since he refuses to finish the Christopher Snow trilogy. I gave in this one time.

Why I read it to the end: One of the main characters is a cop. And it was a good story of possession. Spooky. But I am back to my boycott.

My rating: 3/5



Author: Daniel Waters

Publisher: Hyperion Teens

Copyright: 2008

ISBN: 978-142310922-8

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: Oakvale and Oakvale High

1st Sentence:
Phoebe and her friends held their breath as the dead girl in the plaid skirt walked past their table in the lunchroom.

Why I chose this book: The cover.

Why I read it to the end: I liked the idea of the progressive high school where the DB (differently biotic aka zombies) are concerned. It was a fun story and the first in a zombie YA series. I will look for the rest.

My rating: 4/5



Author: Audrey Niffenegger

Publisher: Abrams

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-8109-9617-5

Audience: Adult

Setting: Chicago, IL

1st Sentence:
The first time I saw the Night Bookmobile, I was walking down Ravenswood Avenue at four o'clock in the morning.

Why I chose this book: I read THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE and I loved it. Even though this was a different format, I hoped that the author would deliver.

Why I read it to the end: It was only 34 pages long and a graphic short story so it wasn't a chore to read it through to the end. The author also illustrated it which I thought was cool. The librarian in me liked the idea of a place where all of your reads are stored. Or maybe the blogger in me, because isn't that essentially what this is?

My rating: 3/5

January #3 - THE JOY LUCK CLUB


Author: Amy Tan

Publisher: Ivy Books

Copyright: 1989

ISBN: 0-8041-0630-4

Audience: Adult

Setting: Present: San Francisco, CA - Past: China

1st Sentence:
The old woman remembered a swan she had bought many years ago in Shanghai for a foolish sum.

Why I chose this book: This was the second book chosen for our library's newly formed book discussion group.

Why I read it to the end: It took me four days to get to page 22. I almost gave up on it and had decided I would tell the group that it just wasn't my cuppa. I'm glad I barreled on with it though, because by the time I got to the end, I found that I truly enjoyed the stories of the four women, their mother's and their past. I have to admit that I rented the movie though, and watched it when I was struggling, and when I saw what it was about, it made the reading easier. I can't say that I will read more of Amy Tan, but I am glad that I read this book. Although I hear THE KITCHEN GOD'S WIFE is magnificent.

My rating: 3.75/5

January #2 - CASTAWAYS


Author: Brian Keene

Publisher: Leisure Books

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-8439-6089-1

Audience: Adult

Setting: An island, uninhabited in the South Pacific

1st Sentence:
Becka knew she was going to drown.

Why I chose this book: I chose it because although it is in the horror genre, the book took place on a reality show similar to Survivor, which at the time I was watching weekly.

Why I read it to the end: I read it for the gore factor. This book is very gory and violent. When a hurricane/tropical storm hits the island, the crew goes to the boat leaving a skeleton crew behind and nobody to help when the things come out of the jungle. I would recommend this author to readers of Bentley Little because they probably wouldn't be offended by the style of writing.

My rating: 2.75/5

January 2011 #1 - MARRIED WITH ZOMBIES


Author: Jesse Petersen

Publisher: Orbit

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-316-10286-5

Audience: Adult

Setting: Seattle, WA

1st Sentence:
David and I became warriors in the zombie plague on the first day, but I don't think that means we were front line soldiers or something.

Why I chose this book: I SQUEED when I saw this book! To me, it was Mr. and Mrs. Smith meets Zombieland at the beginning of a zombie apocalypse at the end of the world. Sarah and David are waiting to see their marriage counselor when they realize they are smack dab in the middle of zombieville and things are gonna get ugly! Hilarious!

Why I read it to the end: This was my first favorite book of 2011 (pay no attention to the fact that it was the first book I read in 2011!). The how to survive a zombie apocalypse tips at the beginning of every chapter alone would have kept me turning pages but the humor was just what I needed. Did I read the rest of the trilogy? What do you think? Stay tuned...

My rating: 5/5

December #5 - BREAKNECK


Author: Erica Spindler

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Copyright: 2008

ISBN: 978-0-312-36391-8

Audience: Adult

Setting: Rockford, IL

1st Sentence:
Rockford, Illinois
Sunday, January 11, 2009
3:05 AM
The kid's eyes snapped open.

Why I chose this book: I've been reading Spindler for years since I read SHOCKING PINK. I have since read everything she's had in print.

Why I read it to the end: This book was a tad disappointing because although I read it rather quickly and it was okay, it really wasn't anything spectacular. I appreciate that authors can't hit it out of the park with EVERY book they write, and an opinion is just an opinion, and this is mine. Despite that, I will still read her books because I enjoy her tremendously as an author overall.

My rating: 3/5



Author: Amanda Ashby

Publisher: Penguin Group

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-14-241256-5

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: Newbury - "Twilight Zone" - California

1st Sentence:
Mia Everett was doomed.

Why I chose this book: I laughed when I read that the main character casts a spell that turns her entire Senior class into zombies just before Prom, because it sounds like something I might have done in high school. I HAD to read it.

Why I read it to the end: I read it in a few hours of one afternoon during my Christmas break from work. I know some authors take offense to people reading their books so quickly when it takes them so long to complete them. And in a sense I understand this. But I argue that it's a testament to the work that they've done. I've read books that have taken me weeeeeeeks to finish, because I was bored and could put it down easily - and take a long time to come back to it, too. If a book grabs me and I read it in one sitting, I think that's a good thing, despite what I read from authors.

My rating: 3.75/5

December #3 - MARKED


Author: P.C. Cast & Kristen Cast

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Copyright: 2007

ISBN: 978-0-312-36026-9

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: House of Night School

1st Sentence:
Just when I thought my day couldn't get any worse I saw the dead guy standing next to my locker.

Why I chose this book: One of my teen patrons returned this to the library gushing about the "magnificent" vampire fiction, racing to grab the second one.

Why I read it to the end: I wanted to be fair to the Cast's for the series they have created. This is the first book in the series and they are very popular at my library, although I prefer the Morganville Vampire books by Rachel Caine. I do like the first sentence, though. I've had days like that!

My rating: 3/5

December #2 - SAVING MAX


Author: Antoinette van Heugten

Publisher: Mira

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-7783-2963-3

Audience: Adult

Setting: Plano, Iowa - Maitland Psychiatric Asylum - Courtroom

1st Sentence:
She walks down a deserted hallway of a psychiatric hospital, her heels tapping a short staccato on the disinfected floors.

Why I chose this book: One of the main characters has Asperger's syndrome which I enjoy reading about and the Iowa setting, even if it is the monster town of Plano.

Why I read it to the end: I am surprised I did finish it but not because it wasn't a good book. It really was. The surprising angle is that it was written in 3rd person PRESENT TENSE which I hate! And it was very awkward at first, but I got over it quickly. The fact that it didn't bother me so much might open the door for other reading because I've automatically dropped books written this way, but the blurb on the back of the book reeled me in and I was committed to giving it a shot.

My rating: 4/5

December 2010 #1 - THE CHRISTMAS TRAIN


Author: David Baldacci

Publisher: Warner Books

Copyright: 2002

ISBN: 0-7595-7049-3

Audience: Adult

Setting: On a train from D.C. to California

1st Sentence:
Tom Langdon was a journalist, a globe trotting one, because it was in his blood to roam widely.

Why I chose this book: This was a book chosen for our newly formed book discussion group at my library.

Why I read it to the end: Mainly, I read it through because it was for our book discussion group. I've read several of Baldacci's legal thrillers and this is not one of them. However, there were several Twain references that I found interesting and the train and characters did pass through Iowa on their way to California. I love to see Iowa in books, because although it is considered a "fly-over" state, it has always been my home-state and I don't see it that way. And, I've always wanted to do a cross-country trip on a train. This book did not deter me from that desire.

My rating: 3.75/5

November #5 - NIGHT RUNNER


Author: Max Turner

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Copyright: 2008

ISBN: 978-0-312-59228-8

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: Nicholls Ward, Peterborough, Canada

1st Sentence:
My name is Daniel Zachariah Thomson.

Why I chose this book: Because the cover promised vampires, and I'm a sucker for zombie and vampire fiction, no matter young adult or adult.

Why I read it to the end: It wasn't that first sentence, that's for sure! I liked the idea that Zach was living in a mental ward and didn't go out or have many friends because of his "allergies," and then finds himself on the run. It's not a romancey vampire story and would probably appeal more to boys than TWILIGHT lovin' girls but I enjoyed it just fine!

My rating: 3.5/5



Author: Seth Grahame-Smith

Publisher: Quirk Books

Copyright: 2007

ISBN: 978-1-59474-179-1

Audience: Young Adult and Adult

1st Sentence:
"Don't let us make imaginary evils, when you know we have so many real ones to encounter." - Oliver Goldsmith (1730-1774)
Brace yourself for some bad news - if you're reading this, there's a good chance you've become trapped in a horror movie.

Why I chose this book: Horror movies are my favorite genre of film and I was looking for a laugh. I knew a tongue-in-cheek satirical account on how to survive if you've been trapped in a horror movie would do just that.

Why I read it to the end: It was pure campy fun! I learned: how to escape zombies, defeat vampires, survive horror movie high school, survive a haunted house, survive a night of babysitting, kill the living dead, what to do if there are snakes on the plane, what to do if you have to stay awake for a week and what to do if you only have seven days to live. Also, I am a sucker for those quizzes on Facebook and I will rock this one if I ever come across it!

My rating: 3.5/5


Title: i'd know you anywhere

Author: Laura Lippman

Publisher: William Morrow

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-06-170655-4

Audience: Adult

Setting: Bethesda, MD - Roaring Springs, MD

1st Sentence:
"Iso, time for -"

Why I chose this book: Laura Lippman is the successful author of the Tess Monaghan series (I read one and didn't care to read others) but it's her stand-alones that I prefer.

Why I read it to the end: Lippman is a skillful writer and she crafts a story that in nearly impossible for me to put down.

My rating: 4.5/5

November #2 - IF I STAY

Title: IF I STAY

Author: Gayle Foreman

Publisher: Dutton Books

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-525-42103-0

Audience: Young Adult

Setting: hospital in Portland, Oregon

1st Sentence:
7:09 a.m.
Everyone thinks it was because of the snow.

Why I chose this book: My reading this month was sparse and sporadic and I was looking for something that I didn't have to focus too hard on and the cover caught my eye.

Why I read it to the end: I found the book to be compelling and hard to put down. So much for something I didn't have to focus on. The good thing is I didn't have to focus for long because I read it on a Sunday afternoon when I had nothing else I had to do.

My rating: 4.5/5

November 2010 #1 - PRETTY LITTLE THINGS


Author: Jilliane Hoffman

Publisher: Vanguard Press

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-1-59315-607-7

Setting: Miami, Florida

1st Sentence:
A small, portly man in a white suit, deep purple shirt, and patent slip-ons ran around the stage with a microphone in hand, reaching out to touch any one of the hundreds of sweaty palms that waved back and forth before him in the Unity Tree of Everlasting Evangelical Life church auditorium.

Why I chose this book: Hoffman's book RETRIBUTION is one of my all time favorite thrillers. I vowed to read everything she ever wrote.

Why I read it to the end: Although in my opinion it wasn't as good as RETRIBUTION, it was still an excellent read. Internet predators are scary beings and this book has a strong focus on them.

My rating: 4.75/5

October #3 - ROOM

Title: ROOM

Author: Emma Donoghue

Publisher: Little, Brown & Co.

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-316-09833-5

Type of book: Fiction

Setting: Room, the Outside

1st Sentence:
Today I'm five.

Why I chose this book: It was getting a lot of notice and I wanted to see what the buzz was about. The book didn't disappoint.

Why I read it to the end: Because I couldn't quit turning the pages. This book was absolutely horrifying in content and heartbreaking, but I had to see how it was resolved. This is one of those books that make you think, "Dear Lord, don't ever let anything like this happen to me." I would not, however, recommend this book to any of my patrons who can't stand when things happen to kids. And I have a lot of them. Sigh.

My rating: 5/5 - One of my favorite books of 2010.

October #2 - DRIFTLESS


Author: David Rhodes

Publisher: Milkweed Editions

Copyright: 2008

ISBN: 978-1-57131-059-0

Type of book: Literary Fiction

Setting: Words, Wisconsin

1st Sentence:
In Southwestern Wisconsin there is an area roughly one hundred and sixty miles long and seventy miles wide with unique features.

Why I chose this book: It was the ALL IOWA READS book selection for 2010. And I had the opportunity to meet the author at the Iowa Library Association conference that year.

Why I read it to the end: This book was not a typical read for me. It was very lyrical. But I didn't want to sound stupid when speaking to Mr. Rhodes, so I finished it.

My rating: 3.5/5

October 2010 - I'm back, again. And #1 - FEED

It's been a year. I won't make excuses, but I hope to be back for good. We'll see. Passions wane and mine did. Other things, like my health, took priority. But now, I am better, I seem to have things completely under control so I hope to be able to focus on this again. I make no promises, because not all promises can be kept, but I will do my best.

Unfortunately, Blogger's look changed while I was gone so it looks like there might be a learning curve but I'll figure out.

Title: FEED

Author: Mira Grant

Publisher: Orbit

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-316-08105-4

Type of book: Zombie fiction

Setting:California, Texas, the campaign trail of 2010

1st Sentence:
Our story opens where countless stories have ended in the last twenty-six years: with an idiot - in this case, my brother Shaun - deciding it would be a good idea to go out and poke a zombie with a stick to see what happens.

Comments: Book 1 in a trilogy of "the rising" and the story of Georgia, Shaun and Buffy, bloggers during "the rising" who are asked to be a part of Senator Ryman's campaign push for presidency.

Why I chose this book: Zombies - enough said. And bloggers.

Why I read it to the end: Although I found the book to be slow at times, and the Senator was a Republican, I enjoyed this book. I mean, zombies.  C'mon, who wouldn't? :)

My rating: 4/5