The End of Year Book Report (#2)

July through December 2016

Title: The Long Weekend: Life in the English Country House

Author: Adrian Tinniswood

Date Finished: 7/3

Finished: ~ish

Format: Hard cover

Ranking Out of 10: 6

Notes: I wasn’t as in to this book as I thought I’d be. I have an obsession with English (and Irish and Scottish, etc) country houses but mostly I just like the pictures. I skimmed through the whole book, reading tidbits here and there that caught my eye. But really I just want to look at the pictures. There was one consistent reference for the pictures in the book – a magazine called Country Life. They have a picture archive. This makes me happy! http://www.countrylifeimages.co.uk/

 

Title: Beautiful Ruins

Author: Jess Walter

Date Finished: 7/16

Finished: Yes

Format: Audio

Ranking Out of 10: 6

Notes: This book was entertaining and clever the way the author pulled Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton into the story without it really being about them. I’m not into celebrity culture at all. There was one character who I couldn’t figure out why the author kept including so much in the story. In became clear towards the end of the book, but for a long time, I just kept thinking “who cares?” Overall, the story was kind of sappy, not my usual reading material, but good summertime reading. Continue reading →

The Half Year Book Report (#2)

January through June 2016

 

Title: Good Christian Bitches

Author: Kim Gaitlin

Date Finished: 1/9

Finished: Yes

Format: Paperback

Ranking Out of 10: 3

Notes: I’m so embarrassed that this is the first book on my list this year, although I was reading a few others simultaneously, which you can probably figure from the dates of the next two entries. I don’t know why I read this. Every once in a while, I just need to junk out. These books are my version of celebrity gossip magazines or reality TV. It’s either read something like this or zombie out to Netflix for half a day. I’d rather read because at least then I’m engaging my imagination a bit. Anyways, this book was like the Babysitters Club for adults. Seriously, even the quality and level of writing. But it kept me reading to the end.

 

Title: Just Like Us

Author: Helen Thorpe

Date Finished: 1/9

Finished: Yes

Format: Audio

Ranking Out of 10: 10

Notes: Let me start this by saying my position on how to treat and deal with illegal immigrants in America is the only issue out of every possible issue in the world that I don’t have a clear opinion on. I can see all sides of the argument and I just don’t know what the best solution is. Also, let me start by saying that when I pick up a book that has a very strong political bias one way or the other, and I didn’t know that in advance, I’m probably going to close it pretty quickly and not pick it up again. So I absolutely love this book because while Ms. Thorpe is clearly on the sympathetic, we-need-to-do-everything-we-can-for-them side, she presents both sides of the argument clearly and without mockery, condescension, or a snide attitude toward the side she isn’t on. Well worth a read (or listen) for anyone who is interested in the human side of the debate. Just the day to reality of what it is like to live without papers (through no conscious decision of your own) and yet be trying your absolutely hardest to make something of yourself. Continue reading →