The Great Big Catch Up Post!

11. The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Rating 1/5 and giving anyone (especially white women over 40) who say they loved this book the side eye eternally.

12. Jumped by Rita Williams-Garcia

Not bad, I mean, it’s a book where you don’t like any of the characters because they all have (kind of realistic) character flaws.

Rating 3/5

 

14. The Secret Life of Bees by Susan Monk Kidd

Not as horrible as The Help but I think that’s only because Lily gets more of a pass than Skeeter because Lily is a kid and Skeeter is a grown college educated woman.

Rating 2/5

15. Bloodchild and other Stories by Octavia E. Butler

Male Pregnancy is always a weird concept but Butler does it well in one of the short stories. It’s an interesting combination of horror, science fiction and what Margaret Atwood would call speculative fiction.

Rating 4/5

16. Finding Miracles by Julia Alvarez

I love Alvarez, at least once every few years I reread In the Time of the Butterflies and Yo!, but this book, I don’t know, Milly is pretty much the type of person that people who are against transracial adoptions want to use as the poster child. It’s well written but the fact that they never actually say which country Milly is from is pretty annoying.

Rating 3/5

17. Going Bovine by Libba Bray

I don’t care if she was going for a modern retelling of Don Quixote, the magical negro trop needs to die.

Rating 2/5

18. Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

My friend gave me $20 bucks to read it; I don’t think it was worth it. Considering that the plot doesn’t start until 3/4’s of the book it just drags and drags about those crazy kids Edward and Jacob.

Rating: No Stars Ever

19. Full Frontal Feminism by Jessica Valenti

It’s a good into guide to feminism, Valenti is a good author however her online presence and her unwillingness to delve more into the intersectionality of race and gender in the marginalization of women of color leaves much to be desired.

Rating 4/5

20. Voices From the Other Side edited by Brandon Massey

I wasn’t expecting the amount of what I would consider science fiction in this book, but that makes me glad. I’m not the biggest fan of horror, and while I didn’t find all of the stories great, it was a solid collection.

Rating 4/5

21. Cinder by Melissa Meyer

This was a bookclub book and I enjoyed it. Cinder is a modern retelling of Cinderella without the Disney happiness. Cinder has character flaws but it smart and someone I think young girls can relate with.

Rating: 4/5

22. Dead to You by Lisa McMann

What can I say about Dead To You without spoilers? If you watch enough Law and Order: SVU or Nick Stahl movies this one won’t surprise you at all.

Rating 3/5

23. Illegal by Bettina Restrepo

Nora is a hardworking teenage girl living in Mexico with her mother and grandmother. Her father left several years before for work in the United States. Suddenly one day, her father stops sending money and Nora and her mother venture to the United States in search of him. This book combines the fears and worries associated with being an illegal immigrant, the constant fear and tension, without being a woe is me narrative. Nora acknowledges their situation and continues to learn and grow.

Rating: 4/5

24. Green Angel by Alice Hoffman

Super short book about a young girl named Green. Green’s family is killed in a brutal attack on the city when she is left at home. Green and her natural ability to heal and grow things, survives but eventually must re-learn how to live.

Rating 3/5

25. Green Witch by Alice Hoffman

Super short sequel to Green Angel and it follows Green on her search for a missing friend (or two). It’s awkwardly rife with mysticism, but I mean, this is the same woman who wrote Practical Magic so I kind of expected it.

Rating 3/5

26. In Love and Trouble by Alice Walker

This collection of short fiction contains the classic Everyday Use which I had read several times before, and a few other stories that I had read before. One of the new ones, We Drink The Wine in Paris was really beautiful and unexpectedly moving.

Rating 3/5

27.Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Aria has lived her entire life in the protected city of Reverie, safe from the danger of the dangerous aether storms and the outsiders Aria knows only to be savages. It’s kind of like Pure by Julianna Baggott, but less disturbing. Everyone in Under the Never Sky is pretty, and there are absolutely no doll-heads as hands.  If the reader were looking for something dark and serious, I’d recommend Pure over Under the Never Sky, but if the reader were say, thirteen and just wanted a dystopia mixed with a romance, then Under The Never Sky is a good read.

Rating 2/5

28. Hold Still by Nina Lacour

Following the unexpected suicide of her best friend Ingrid, Caitlin tries to return to a normal life, but without Ingrid, nothing is normal. When she finds Ingrid’s journal hidden under her bed, Caitlin is forced to realize that Ingrid’s death is hard to everyone to deal with.

Rating 4/5

29. The Stoning of Soraya M. by Freidoune Sahebjam

The film version of this book was recommended to me by Netflix, after watching it I decided that 1) I need to watch more happy movies so that Netflix doesn’t give me categories like “Emotional Foreign Dramas” and “Tearjerking Political Films” and 2) that I needed to read the book. Granted it took me almost a year to get around to it, I’m glad I finally got around to it. Written in the formal of a novel, Sahebjam takes some literary license into his inferences into certain characters thoughts that he couldn’t have known, but it gives the book a more well-rounded feeling. It fills in the gaps that otherwise would be unanswerable questions, like why.

Rating: 3/5 it’s a book about a stoning, it’s tragic, gross and really happened.

30. Keesha’s House by Helen Frost

I managed to get a copy of this book from last year’s Indiana Author’s Awards, Frost was a finalist.  It’ll remind readers of Ellen Hopkins  (Identical, Crank, Tricks) with its poetry/prose mash up. Frost made me to a time warp back to my AP English Literature classes where we learned about sestinas, sonnets and about a dozen other poetic forms that Frost uses. This still manages to not take away from the actual story too much, but I do think that Frost’s book might have too many characters.

Rating: 3/5

Okay, wow, that took me a while to finish up. Here’s a summary:

Fiction Books Read: 28

Non Fiction books read: 2

Books that don’t count towards total read: 9

And for kicks, here’s what else I’ve read.

  1. Remember Me2: The Return by Christopher Pike
  2. Under the Dome by Stephen King
  3. A Million Little Pieces by James Frey
  4. Do Android Dream of Electric Sheep by Phillip K. Dick
  5. The Minority Report and Other Stories by Phillip K. Dick
  6. Habibi by Craig Thompson
  7. Uglies: Shay’s Story by Scott Westerfield
  8. Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler (read it last year)
  9. Parable of the Talents by Octavia E. Butler (read it last year)

My original goal was to read 75 books, so we’ll see how it do. Wish me luck!

P.S. This post gets ALL of the tags

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