Thursday, December 6, 2012

Dexter in the Dark

 
Dexter in the Dark
Jeff Lindsay

I'm becoming less and less addicted to these books. I know it's because I love the show so much more and the show is nothing like the books. Normally that would annoy me, but I think that the Dexter series is the greatest show on tv. I haven't gotten tired of it, and frankly, I think that its more creative than the books. I like the books though, don't get me wrong.
Things I don't like about the book:
Deb already knows what Dex is.
Dexter is trying to teach Astor and Cody the "Harry Code". The kids have the same Dark Passenger as Dexter.
The plot was okay but the ending was way to fantastical for me. Maybe it was because I was reading it late at night and I was tired and I just wanted to finish it. It could have been because my mind was elsewhere while reading this book and I didn't give it a fair shot. 
It's so creepy to me that Doakes is still in this book. He dies in the second season, but in the books he was hacked up in the second one so in this book he's walking around with metal feet and hands and no tongue. It'd be better if he just died. That's all I'm saying.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Madame Bovary's Daughter

 
Madame Bovary's Daughter
Linda Urbach

I'm going to state that I have a love/hate relationship with this book. I loved the time period, the dresses, the money, the (mostly) plot. I liked the way that Urbach wrote and described everything. I hated Berthe, the main character. I hated the way that her life was so horrible, yet it always worked out for her. Most importantly, I HATED the ending. I thought that it was the worst ending to any novel ever. I couldn't tell what the climax was, either. There were about 50 of them. 

It's the story of Emma Bovary's daughter. Emma Bovary being Madame Bovary from Gustave Flaubert's novel. I honestly have no idea why I picked up this book. I was walking through the stacks at the library and I just reached out and picked this up. I had no idea who Madame Bovary was (other than hearing the name) but I liked the pretty green dress on the cover. I tend to, very literally, judge a book by it's cover, and this one looked nice. I'm going to spoil the entire book in the next paragraph, so proceed with caution.

I have this thing against protagonists who have everything fall perfectly into their laps despite having to "work hard" to obtain it. This book was one that fell into that category. Poor Berthe's mother committed suicide by arsenic and her father died a year later, a cliche, of a broken heart. That was Flaubert's fault (I'm assuming since I'm currently only on page 48 of Madame Bovary). Anyway, Berthe goes to move with her mean old grand-mere on a farm, the painter Millet paints her naked in a field. Grand-mere dies. Berthe moves to another part of France and works in a textile mill. The owner of the mill thinks that Berthe is amazing and offers for her to work in his house in Paris. She refuses at first and then changes her mind and works for the guy. His wife is a crazed bisexual bored housewife. She molests Berthe and then lets (timeline- sorry if I suck at explaining this) this old guy who used to be the paramour of her mother, rape Berthe. Then Berthe freaks out and quits. She's poor and destitute for a millisecond and then she meets up with this other guy who is a famous dress maker. Berthe is awesome and makes this man so much money and even more famous with her dress designs. Berthe is rich. Berthe saves enough money to buy a house (which is unheard of in those days for a woman to own a house). Along the way, Berthe starts dating this guy, Armand, who was commissioned to paint a mural for the lady that molested Berthe. They have a whole bunch of raunchy sex scenes, she gets pregnant and he ends up cheating on her with some famous actress that Berthe made dresses for. Berthe is betrayed, yet she raises her baby, Emma, go figure, alone and in her new house. She doesn't reconcile with Armand and the book ends with Armand coming to Emma's second birthday and they just smile at each other and everything is peachy.

I think that the ending had to happen that way, because so much had already happened in the book. I did like the book. It made me want to read Madame Bovary, so that's always a good thing to inspire me. So I liked it, read it. You don't need to read the original to understand what's going on. There is a lot of sex. Like 50 Shades minus that disgusting tampon scene that will scar me forever. Sorry to put that in your mind again.

The Penelopiad

 
The Penelopiad
Margaret Atwood

I liked this book. It took me about 3 hours to read and I just read it straight through. I mean, I took a small break to eat, of course. This book is the story of Penelope, Odysseus' wife, and how it was when he was off on his journey home from Troy. Penelope was at home alone with their son. It was also told from the perspective of the 12 maids who Odysseus killed upon his return home. I liked when the maids talked. It was dark yet light at the same time.  If you know the story, I'm not spoiling it for you, if not, I won't. 
I've never really been interested in Greek mythology before, but this might be my introduction. I didn't think I knew the story upon first glance, but after reading it, everything from English class came back to me. I think being familiar with the story made it easier to read and more interesting. I like when you get to read stories from different perspectives. Peneolpe is a nice heroine, too. She's smart, unlike Helen (you know, the one they fought the Trojan war over) who is just beautiful. I like that about Penelope. Also, she has an awesome name. 
I would read this book if I were you. Just go pick it up. I haven't really read much of Margaret Atwood's writing. Actually, I've only read a few poems and I normally hate poetry because it's so wordy and my simple mind doesn't understand any of it, but hers was beautiful. I actually read them instead of skimming over it looking for pretty prose. Anyway, go ahead and give it a read. I would even contemplate reading it again, which I never do.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Not Afraid of Life: My story so far

Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far | [Bristol Palin, Nancy French] 
Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far
Bristol Palin

If there's one thing I hate it's exclamation points! I think they're so annoying and almost always unecesary. I like them in poems and when a 10 year old girl is writing to someone about how a boy looked at her. But that's basically it. Bristol loves them, apparently.
 Well, I love Bristol Palin still. I think that she's the prettiest girl out there. I hate the fact that her life is such a snoozefest. Her show was so boring I couldn't watch it and her book was just as bad. I mean, don't get me wrong. I read it so therefore I didn't hate it. But I mean it was basically "I went fishing, I used to fish, I rode around in Levi's truck, I like blue jeans" Oh, yeah. She had a baby. You'd think a book about a teen mom would be a little more exciting. It's not. I assure you.

I still think she's really cool. I like the fact that she seems genuine. And I realize that 90% of what she was saying was all for show, I think that she is still a nice person. You don't really get to learn a lot about her, but what do you expect from a Republican? I guess we're all just worried about our image. It wasn't a long book. It was an easy read. I liked it. Levi is an asshole but she didn't complain about how terrible he was. Or at least if she did, it didn't really seem like that. She doesn't like Meghan McCain. That's laughable since I just read Meghan's book so it was neat to compare their feelings for each other.
Tripp is an ugly baby. I blame Levi.
Bristol is a cool name. All of the Palin's have cool names. I like that she still idolizes her mother. 
This book made me want to move to Alaska. Even though I never will.

The Stepford Wives

 
The Stepford Wives
Ira Levin

This was a short book. I thought the main character was obnoxious. I like to consider myself the Phyllis Schlafly of my generation, and I'm the modern-day anti-feminism champion.
 I love the idea of perfect housewives.

 
I have to admit, I liked the plot. After you got over the part where Joanna was continually disgusted over the idea of a men's only club. I was actually sort of disappointed *spoiler* that she ends up being changed at the end. Maybe there's a sequel, I'm not sure. But I think that if your protagonist fights so hard against something, they should at least have the option to triumph over her brain washed husband. But you win some, you lose some. I guess Joanna lost this round. 
It was a short book, so I liked that. It was an easy read and it kept me entertained. I didn't have a long hiatus during the reading of it, so it could've been worse.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dirty Sexy Politics

 
Dirty Sexy Politics
Meghan McCain

Steel yourself. I feel a long political rant filled blog post approaching. 

I've always known who Meghan McCain was, obviously, but I never thought about her. Then I randomly came across a quote of hers and then my obsession started with me trying to find out about her. And when I say obsession, it lasted about 7 hours. I now follow her on Twitter and frequent her blog. I thought that I had finally found my political idol. She seemed to be my political alter ego, feeling exactly what I felt. And I believe that she does, but this book didn't do it for me. To my political point she says in the first few pages of her book "I believe in God and the church, but I am as adamantly pro-life as I am passionate in my support of gay marriage". Oh My God, Meghan. Me too. I understand church and the concept of God and I believe in him as much as the next completely lapsed Catholic, but pro-life is like my passion. I could go on for hours and hours and hours and there is no way in the world that you could ever get me to change my mind. I'm a fairly open minded person, but have a pro-choice proponent come up to me and I'll tear you down. Anyway, not to get heated or anything. Have I finally found my Reagan? I am a semi-proud member of the Grand Old Party, but I've been sort of embarrassed to admit that as of late. Why? I believe what the party stands for but I'm also not going to sit by and have men tell me that there is a such thing as "legitimate rape". I mean, really. I shutter at the thought of someone being so ignorant. MEGHAN MCCAIN AGREES WITH ME OMG. She likes gay rights. I'm totally on board with that. Although I have to admit that my inner Rosa Parks is squealing at the thought of another era in the battle for civil rights. But that's for another day and another blog.

Okay, back to the book.
My initial reaction to the title was "what the hell is this going to be about?" I had zero background knowledge of this book and what it was supposed to be. A tell-all about famous politicians having sex? How corrupt the political world is? No. None of those. It's basically Meghan McCain paying homage to her father and, while she claims this isn't what she's doing, blaming Sarah Palin for her fathers loss in 2008. There were about 8 chapters about how Sarah was a horrible running mate and how Joe Lieberman should have been the pick. It wasn't really about that though. It was a memoir of sorts about the years, days, weeks, months and hours leading up to the 2008 presidential election. She politely blamed a lot of people for her father's short-comings, after all, he was the one running for president. He's the poster child. Maybe I'm just jealous of the idolization that she has of her parents. Only positive things come out of her mouth about John or Cindy. That could be all PR and whatnot, but it's humanizing, something that I don't get. Anyway, at least she didn't say anything about Bristol, because I love myself some Bristol Palin. Even if I'm the only one in the country. 

I liked the way she wrote her book. It was an easy read. I think it could have flowed better though. In my not so sharp mind, I had trouble following the chain of events. It's 2008 then two sentences later it's 2000 then 2004 and then before you know it, Meghan is in grade school wearing a flag themed party dress holding up hand made signs for her dad in 1996. I still like her though. She's sort of what I wished that I could be. A gorgeous mess. Her life seems put together but her emotions are all out of whack. Mine is the opposite. I've always longed to be that girl that could cry in front of people when I got stressed. And I'm sure she looked cute when she did it. Meghan McCain is beautiful. Her hair is perfect. I so badly wanted her to be my Caucasian, political Mindy Kaling. The first few thoughts I had of this book were that it was going to be funny. I'm digging the humor in this. 

I also thought that there was going to be some dirty, sexy politics. Instead it was Meghan traveling around on various tour buses hating Sarah Palin and all of her dads campaign advisers for picking Sarah. There was no sex. Not even dirt. She talked about sex twice, but she didn't have any. It wasn't juicy and she should have called the book "The Idolization of John McCain". 

I still like her though. And I'm hoping to read the other book she wrote with Michael Ian Black.

Dearly Devoted Dexter

 
Dearly Devoted Dexter
Jeff Lindsay

This is the second book in the Dexter series. As I continue to read, I am more cognizant of the fact that this is not the series that I grew to love oh so much that I'm reading, but a completely different entity. Which is disappointing seeing as how my devotion to the Showtime Dexter series is borderline stalkerish. The more I read, however, I'm starting to like Book Dexter more and more. I won't sit here and explain why I like the TV show better, because you've realized that by now. 

Okay, Dearly Devoted Dexter is, er, nothing  like the second season. Maybe it's not supposed to be. Pardon me for digressing. Back on track...I'm slowly beginning to not be annoyed by Dexter's "humor" and I'm starting to find it charming. Sort of. Slowly. I thought the plot was boring and I wanted something interesting to happen. The latter two thirds of the book were about Dexter trying to find this guy that kidnapped all of these military guys who were involved in some sort of blood shed in El Salvador a few years back. Sargent Doakes is one of them. Doakes is on to Dexter and he trails him in the book, finding nothing, of course. Dexter accidentally proposes to Rita and he realizes that Cody, Rita's son, also has The Dark Passenger inside of him and Dexter vows to mold Cody into a mini-Dexter. Have fun with that. 
I read it. It went quickly. I like the way Lindsay writes. Mostly love the short chapters. It moved and I can't say that I hated it. I'm 100% that I'm going to read Dexter #3.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Insatiable

 
Insatiable
Meg Cabot

One word: Nonsense. And I'm not saying that because of the plot. I hate books that are all romance fall in love in less than 24 hours to the point where I'd risk my life to save you. Please note, I'm going to ruin this book because I'm not going to sit here an recommend that you read it.
So it's basically this girl who writes for a soap opera, Insatiable, and she, like me, is fed up with this vampire nonsense that everyone is obsessed with. Well, what do you know, in a twist of fate, she meets a vampire when she's walking her dog in the middle of the night. Surprise, surprise, he's very attractive, intelligent and rich. They fall in love, there's a vampire killer who is tracking the vampire. Oh and what do you know, Alric, the vampire slayer falls in love with the main character, Meena, as well. Who'da thunk? Well obviously there are warring factions of vampires. The classic battle of good vs. evil, brother vs. brother. Essentially your vampire civil war. There's battle where no one on the good side dies because it's a book. The main vampire, Lucien, turns into a dragon and kills all the bad guys (of course he's a good guy) and tries to protect Meena. Alric tries to move in during the heat of battle and kiss Meena, but for some reason she just pretends like it doesn't happen. Lucien wants Meena to move to Thailand with him and run away forever, making her a vampire, oh hi Bella Swan. Meena has the wherewithal to say no and she joins the team of vampire slayers who work for the Vatican. Oh, I forgot to mention, OF COURSE Meena can predict people's deaths. She has to be special yet not special at all. Trying to be like a normal girl, but really, what normal female has a pixie cut and can read minds? Stop it, please. 
Oh and the worst part is that she doesn't end up with Alric. I generally tend to side with the Duckie-esque characters (except of course Duckie, who I hate), even though they never win in the end. While reading this I honestly thought that she and Alric would get married or whatever because of his swift and sudden decision that he was in love with her. You know, he hated her for 3/4 of the book then decided after almost a whole weekend of knowing the girl that he loved her. But, alas, they don't get together. They might because she does end up going to work with him. So I guess it's a choose your own ending kind of novel. 
If you like 50 Shades of Grey and Twilight then you'd like this book. I think it was a perfect mix of the two stories. I honestly enjoyed the plot of this book. Meg Cabot should've stretched it out into two books at least. It had a lot of interesting, accurate back story. Which I obviously liked. 
As a high schooler, I loved The Princess Diaries oh so much. And I thought this would be the same. Actually a girl at work was reading Meg Cabot books and I honestly had no idea that she wrote other than about Mia Thermopolis. I guess that my expectations were met for this book. It read quickly and well. The only reason I said "nonsense" at the beginning was because of the whack love story. Please stop making people think that they can fall madly in love in such a short time frame. Maybe you can. I don't know. Maybe it's just me.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Darkly Dreaming Dexter

 
Darkly Dreaming Dexter
Jeff Lindsay


This started off pretty good. I liked the way that the TV show sort of stuck to what happened in the book, but then it sort of petered out and the TV show, in my opinion, was a lot better. There really wasn't too much suspense in this book. I mean, I've watched every episode of the TV series, but since the show deviates from the book quite a lot ( I mean, it would have to since the book is about 250 pages and the show has to last a whole season) I didn't exactly know what was going to happen. I liked the way the book read. It was very easy and it flowed pretty well. My mind wandered a little bit mostly because I thought that the TV show was better and I was waiting for Deb to meet Brian, but that doesn't happen in the book. No wedding plans for this season. I realize that it's blasphemy to like a film version of a book better than the print version, but I can't help it. The book is supposed to be "darkly humorous" I believe and it's hard to have a book about a serial killer and laugh at the same time. I like the serious tone of the TV show a lot better. At times, Book Dexter seems to be a little goofy. And maybe if I had read the book before watching the show I would have a different opinion. Perhaps, but that's not the case. So while I really enjoyed the book and I plan on reading the rest of the series, it wasn't my favorite. I think reading the books will be difficult because they are so different from the TV series. So we'll have to see. Only time will tell if I feel like finishing the series. Overall, however, I really liked the book. Mostly because it was a quick read. About 2 1/2 days with work and my excessive Sims playing. 
I'll give the book a 3 out of 5 mostly because I love the show so much.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The Help

The Help (Hardcover)  
The Help
Kathryn Stockett

I loved this book. I loved everything about it. Every minute of reading it. It makes me wish that I grew up in the 1960's.  I loved Skeeter, I think that she is a perfect heroine. Beyond perfect. I didn't cry as much as I did when I saw the movie. And that's another thing: the movie. I go against everything I stand for when I say I think I like the movie better than the book [insert one of those shocked emoticons]. I can't help it. I cried during the movie. I felt more conviction in the whole Ablieen part when she was saying goodbye to Mae Mobley. I'm aware I'm spelling all of this wrong, by the way. Anyway, I think you should read it. 
5 out of 5

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Post Grad

 
Post Grad
Emily Cassel

This book was dumb. It took me about 3 hours of my life and I can't get them back. Super predictible. Of course her life ends up working out perfectly in the end after "struggling" for about 3 weeks after she graduates college. Your life is so hard. 
And that's about it.

Once Upon a Secret



 
Once Upon a Secret
Mimi Alford

I had such high hopes for this book. I waited months for the library to have a free copy (okay I kept forgetting to request it, but you get the idea) and when I finally got it, I was so super excited. And then...I was in pain finishing it. 
I was hoping it was going to be like 50 Shades of Grey except better written and not so stupid. I was wrong. It was basically this (sorry for the spoilers, but we all know he gets shot):
"I was a tall, skinny rich girl. I, by some miracle, got an internship at the White House during the Kennedy Administration. JFK asked me to swim in a pool...weird, but why not? He has a small party in his living room. He asks if I want a tour. I say yes assuming that this is normal, like I get asked for tours of presidents' bedrooms on the daily.  He pushes me on the bed and has sex with me. Normal.  No, not rape cause he asked if "this is okay?". His wife and kids were somewhere galavanting across the country and we just lay in bed and he shows me how he likes his eggs. We take a bath every so often. He's so funny and sweet. Oh, he has a wife? What? Oh well. I'm 19 and the President loves me. I meet a man of my own and go back to college. The FUCKING PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA calls me up on the dorm phone and we flirt. I get engaged to this new guy, John gets jealous and our affair is over because it's okay that he's married, but me...nope. JFK gets shot. I tell my fiance about my secret and he gets pissed. Blah blah blah the rest of my boring life."
Fin.

I mean, it was like my Grandma was telling the story to a nun or something. There was no character development. And, I hate to say this, but I could care less about you and your life. Please let's just talk about Mr. Kennedy for a second. Not 200 or so pages about you being a naive college girl who is sleeping with the most powerful man in the world. Let's just not.