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Good reviews, but a very meh book. Did not finish.



Really good dystopian novel. Very enjoyable.
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"Money won is twice as sweet as money earned."



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i posted this in the Reading Tab a few weeks ago:

Honolulu by Alan Brennert


story of a young "picture bride" who journeys to Hawai'i in 1914 in search of a better life.

"Instead of the affluent young husband and chance at an education that she has been promised, she is quickly married off to a poor, embittered laborer who takes his frustrations out on his new wife. Renaming herself Jin, she makes her own way in this strange land, finding both opportunity and prejudice. With the help of three of her fellow picture brides, Jin prospers along with her adopted city, now growing from a small territorial capital into the great multicultural city it is today. But paradise has its dark side, whether it's the daily struggle for survival in Honolulu's tenements, or a crime that will become the most infamous in the islands history..."

this was my first book by this author, and i chose it because i really enjoy historical dramas that are told with accuracy. this book does a really great job of that, plus it's really well-written; obviously Brennert has a lot of fondness for Hawaii, the descriptions of the city at the turn of the 20th century are breathtaking and told with relish.

the story actually begins in Korea and as you follow Jin, the Korean picture bride, through the story you learn a lot about what it was like to live as a Korean woman under not just men, but a land occupied under Japanese rule. Jin is a seamstress with nimble hands it seems. it was kind of refreshing to read a story where 'womens work' is not diminished or deemed uninteresting.



The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher


"The Princess Diarist is Carrie Fisherís intimate, hilarious and revealing recollection of what happened behind the scenes on one of the most famous film sets of all time, the first Star Wars movie."

this was my second Carrie Fisher book. i also read Wishful Drinking a few months back, but i enjoyed this one more. it was really fun to read Carrie's side of her relationship with Harrison Ford (Carrison, she calls it). also, Carrie Fisher is ****ing hilarious and refreshingly, apologetically frank. i dunno that i'd recommend this book to just anyone, because a good third of it is old diary excerpts from a diary she kept whilst filming A New Hope. but i'd recommend Carrie Fisher as an author to just about anyone. i don't usually read 'celebrity' books, but Carrie Fisher is special. or, was special.

anyway, the diary bits are kind of pretentious, but they're really fun to read imo. it made me feel all nostalgic or a bit like reading my own old journals. she also talks about what it's like to be a poor rich person, and the weirdness of having millions of fans.

yeah, it's definitely worth a read.



The Red Tent by Anita Diamant


"Her name is Dinah. In the Bible, her life is only hinted at in a brief and violent detour within the more familiar chapters of the Book of Genesis that are about her father, Jacob, and his dozen sons. Told in Dinah's voice, this novel reveals the traditions and turmoils of ancient womanhood--the world of the red tent."

another historical drama... kinda. it doesn't pretend to be accurate, it kind of takes its own spin on the story of Jacob, Rachael, Leah, Dinah and her brothers, but in doing so it sort of makes a statement about perception... and rape culture in general, really. the story, told by Dinah, begins with Jacob and the story of her four mothers: Leah, Rachael, Zilpah, and Belhah. Diamant certainly takes liberties, and if you're Christian, you might not enjoy that so much. but the story of Dinah as told in the bible is pretty shoddy, anyway, isn't it?

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here's a few others. i've been reading a lot lately.

ATTACHMENTS by rainbow rowell

i'll read anything by rainbow rowell, usually twice. she writes about young love, usually, and her female characters are always so relatable and you can't help but get obsessed with all the characters by the end of her books. i'd recommend this one to anyone who's into that sort of thing, but eleanor and park is what's widely regarded as her best (and most well known) novel.
also, a lot of her stories take place in the 80s and 90s. this particular book takes place in the mid-90s, so there's an added layer of fun and nostalgic to it.

POSTCARDS FROM THE EDGE by carrie fisher

k so this was the first book by carrie fisher i read that was more fiction... well, sorta autobiographical fiction, as it's about a young actress struggling with her addiction problems/her career shortly after rehab. suzanne vale is hilarious. i swear i'm not being at all facetious when i say carrie fisher's books are not your typical hollywood tripe. it's fascinating to read about what it'd be like to have rich people problems, especially someone with carrie's fisher's problems.

FRIENDS WITH BOYS by faith erin hicks

this was a cute, short graphic novel about a young girl coming to grip with her mother's abandonment and starting public high school for the first time after being home schooled all her life - something i can more or less relate to. it's got some fantasy elements to it, too. it's also super nostalgic.

THE AGE OF INNOCENCE by edith wharton

I LOVE EDITH WHARTON SO MUCH. most of her novels need to be read between the lines, though. she had such a insider's knowledge of the upper class New York "aristocracy" to realistically portray the lives and morals of the Victorian era, but her stories are always seen through less rose-tinted glasses than many other authors of the time period.

THE TURN OF THE SCREW by henry james

a young governess takes up residence in a seemingly idyllic country home and is put in care of 2 young children, as they are both orphans and their last remaining relative can't really be bothered with them. pretty soon she begins to see apparitions and learn that there is a history of corruption and disturbance in the house and convinces herself the children are possessed..... OR ARE THEY?
this is quite a ride! if you're into gothic novels, you can't pass this up. it's probably technically a novella. it's only, like, 125 pages, but damn.
i also HIGHLY recommend the 1961 movie which is based on it, The Innocents, starring Deborah Kerr. it's not only just as gripping and atmospheric but the special effects are gorgeous.




THE AGE OF INNOCENCE by edith wharton

THE TURN OF THE SCREW by henry james
I love both these authors. (You probably know that they were great friends.)

Have you seen the movie The Age of Innocence? Itís lovely. Try to see the movie based on her book The House of Mirth. Itís terrific.

Have you seen Jamesís The Portrait of a Lady movie? Also terrific.



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I love both these authors. (You probably know that they were great friends.)
me too!!!! well, i love edith wharton, but i admit, this was the first henry james book i've read. i added a few others to my to-read list, though!

Have you seen the movie The Age of Innocence? Itís lovely.
yes i have! and i agree; it's very good. a great adaptation if i do say so.

Try to see the movie based on her book The House of Mirth. Itís terrific.
will do! i really enjoyed the book. i read it a few years ago. it's prob my fave edith wharton book, actually.

Have you seen Jamesís The Portrait of a Lady movie? Also terrific.
no, i haven't. thanks for the recommendation!



Started browsing around the bookshelf of my wife, who has a biology degree. I think I might be hooked after a book like this. Incredible storytelling.



the first henry james book i've read. i added a few others to my to-read list, though!
Some of Jamesís books are easier to read than others. I would suggest Daisy Miller, which is a novella. (Also a movie.) The Portrait of a Lady is terrific. And so is Washington Square from which the famous old movie The Heiress was adapted. The Aspern Papers is also good.



Set in a post apocalyptic world where there are no children being born, pregnancies end in death etc.
It drags and there is no story. Everytime you think it is going to an interesting direction it just... doesn't. 2/5
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Perhaps every celebrity has had an unusual life, and a unique journey. Perhaps we all have. Certainly is true of this lady - originally known as a fine singer songwriter from the 60s folk music boom, she has been a teacher, a presence on Sesame Street and an activist for indigenous peoples worldwide. I knew many of her songs and have seen her in concert several times in recent years - she's still writing songs and still touring. Her performances were magnetic and her presence was gracious .

But I really knew little about her life, for instance, that she was adopted. I was startled to learn of some severe challenges she faced when young, and that continued to haunt her in her choice of male partners for some time. And I was rewarded to hear her philosophy of empathy with others, and wonder at the beauties of nature and animals. Never knew , in fact, that she lives on her own farm in Hawaii, surrounded by her beloved creatures, Goats abound. And cats.

I won't reveal more of her story for those who wish to explore this authorized bio. Most interesting to me was her evolution as a songwriter, her friendships with some major musical figures , and her insights on creativity.

The bio is written from the viewpoint of a rock magazine writer , who also was a fan and became a friend to Buffy. So the prose - and the praise- is a bit lavish. That didn't daunt me from thoroughly enjoying this book. Buffy s story is so compelling and her observations on life and people and music so well thought out, it was a pleasure to discover her story.
Recommended.




Not too heavy, but there is still a lot of complexity in this book. If only Hawking would have been alive to see the black hole photo that was just released a month or so ago.



A Confession, by the greatest author of all time.



A quick read, and it's not too heavy on the PTSD department or 'how to live your life' department. Still a good book that I would recommend.




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ONE OF US IS LYING
by karen mcmanus


this book is sort of a Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars - 5 students walk into detention, only 4 come out alive. i've been reading 'murder mysteries' lately, and this one somehow got thrown into the mix. this was a pretty good book for the most part. the kids in it were well written, but i kinda wish they'd fleshed out some of the non-teenage side characters a bit more.

overall though, i did enjoy this. she writes young romance kinda like Rainbow Rowell, whom i love. and i enjoyed the intricate detail's surrounding the death & investigation.

for anyone who hasn't read this, it's not super hard to guess who the killer is before the end of the book, though i have to admit, the person it ended up being was not my first guess.

MISERY
by stephen king


okaaay, i really enjoyed this book. it was gripping and fun. but i have to admit i'm still not 100% comfortable with the way King writes his fat characters, and specifically for this book, fat characters with mental illness. would have been nice to see things from Annie's perspective a bit more.

THE MIST
by stephen king


the movie was way better. there was an unnecessary love/sex sequence in the book that made me turn my nose up. seriously, just watch the movie.

SABRIEL
by garth nix


i LOVED this! this is the first book in the Old Kingdom fantasy series. Sabriel is the next in line to be Abhorsen, a true necromancer and fighter of the undead that wreak havoc on the land. after spending a life mostly sheltered in a boarding school, Sabriel's life is thrown into adventure and chaos when she finds out her father, the current Abhorsen, is in peril. she is the only one who can help him, along with her grouchy and kewt cat friend, Mogget.

btw, the audio book is narrated by Tim Curry, and it's fan ****ing tastic.

GIRLS & SEX: NAVIGATING THE COMPLICATED NEW LANDSCAPE
by peggy orenstein


this made me think a lot about my own sex life, lol. peggy orenstein interviews over 100 different young women from different backgrounds about their sex life, and the verdict is in: women are conditioned from a young age to ignore their own sexual pleasure over men's. men, i know you probably won't, but you SHOULD read this. women, too.

ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOOS NEST
by ken kesey


if you're anything like me, you probably won't like McMurphy, but you'll still feel bad for him. it's a good book, even though i so would have loved to get more perspective on Nurse Ratchet.
it is worth the read, though.
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just finished reading: THE FIRM by john grisham
currently reading: OF HUMAN BONDAGE by w. somerset maugham, RUNAWAY JURY by john grisham, and SUMMER KNIGHT by jim butcher

total books read so far this year: 17





Bought this on Amazon Kindle for $1, which, obviously, is a great buy. Been reading it now for 2-1/2 months, but am going to take a break now.





Not sure why I keep buying Tessa Hadleyís novels. I like her short stories, but not her novels. Returned for refund.



Really excellent debut novel.





Good book. Linn Ullmann reminisces about her Łber-famous parents, Ingmar Bergman & Liv Ullmann.





Quite interesting. Well-written.



Didnít take off for me. Returned for refund.



H&K MP5 deserves more praise.

★★★★
Brazilian philosopher Luiz Felipe Pondť reflects on contemporary everyday life and talks about religion, politics, society, human behavior, literature, tradition and many other subjects.


★★★
Another brazilian philosopher, here, he reflects on the question: If you did not exist, what difference would it make?


★★★★★
Crime and Punishment
A masterpiece!

Just started "Solaris" by Stanislaw Lem. Really liking so far.
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