Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Autumn reading and lots of listening.

You can follow along on Instagram @ladyfacereads where I share all my reading adventures, at least some of the time.  And in the interest of full disclosure these are referral links to

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell - I bought this one as a kindle book while I was looking for a new audiobook.  It was sooooo good!  I started it one evening, and finished it the following afternoon.  It was such a lovely well written story that just takes you along.  You don't have to do any work to become involved.  It's great. It's about a set of twins, one in particular, who are just starting out as Freshmen in college.  Cath is obsessed with a fictional world and writes fanfiction.  She has other quirks and lots to deal with at home and at school.  She meets a boy, and some other people, and has a very interesting fiction writing class.  I loved watching her progress.  Things come up that she doesn't know how to handle, or deal with, and it's interesting to watch her go through them.  I liked the ending, but I wish it had kept going!  I wasn't ready to say goodbye to them yet!  I think this book is geared more towards the YA audience, but I really enjoyed it.  A lovely little break into another world. 

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver - I got this one as a recommendation from a great friend.  Actually, she loaned me her copy but I never started it and then she moved and I gave it back and became determined to read it.  I got the kindle version mainly because the whispersync option to add was relatively cheap.  And I was a little desperate for something new to listen to while I washed dishes.  I wasn't super intrigued by the description but was pleasantly surprised by the writing and the narrative.  I'll be looking into Kingsolver's other books.  This story is about a family who move to the Congo in the late 1950's early 1960's so the dad can bring Jesus to the descendants of Ham.  Ha. They're from Georgia.  I love how they talk, it's amusing and a whole different world of language. The story switches between the perspectives of the mother and her four daughters and spans many years after their mission in the Congo has ended.  The turns and twists the story takes each sister, and their mother through were surprising and unexpected and intense.  At first I wasn't fond of the narrators voice on the audible recording, I thought she sounded disinterested, but then she grew on me and it was fine.  I really enjoyed this story and am thrilled to have found a new author to read! I'd recommend this one for sure, especially if the 1950's life or anything related to Africa is intriguing to you.  

Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham - OK, don't get mad here, to each his own, and this one I didn't like at all.  It's difficult to review a book about someone's life, because then it feels like you're "judging them" and while I'm not doing that here, I was so confused about the stories she picked to share.....Anyway.  I read this one because everyone's been recommending it since it became available, and it was only $5 in the Kindle store.  While I'm all for female empowerment, gender equality, and women's rights as I believe Lena Dunham is known for, I didn't enjoy this one as much as I had hoped.  I love hearing the stories behind the people who have "made it" in film and television and comedy, it's just interesting to me.  However, I'm always nervous that these stories will be a list of beds slept in, and who with, on the way to success.  I don't think that is or should be what defines your life story and don't like reading about other people's sexual mishaps and regrets.  I don't think that's brave or courageous unless it has some direct relationship to the lesson to be mentioned, or directed your life in some specific way.  I felt like this was a let down, a deceptive title, and the majority of the book was one bad sexual encounter after another.  It left me a little frustrated at Miss Dunham for not having better judgement and not learning from her previous mistakes.  She seemed careless and then regretful, and then careless again and if that was the intended tone then it didn't do much for me at all.  She consciously omitted the happy and healthy relationship she is currently in, which leaves us to wonder why the heck she told us all those gross stories.  Her childhood stories were interesting, but left me feeling sorry for her rather than oh wow, look how much she's gotten past that, how great for her!  It felt more like a cake you want to be done right now, and aren't willing to let it cool all the way before it gets frosted and turns out not as great as it could be.  I wouldn't recommend this one.  **A tip, if you buy a kindle book you have a few days to return it if you're not satisfied or bought it by accident so rest assured, this was returned.

Summer House with Swimming Pool by Herman Koch - Ugh, I wanted so badly to like this one.  After reading The Dinner and loving it especially for it's unique style, narration, and creepiness, I was excited to read everything else Koch has done.  This story is about a doctor who may or may not have murdered someone, and the investigation that is done on the case.  The story is told from his perspective and is very creepy.  I got the kindle with whispersync (with audio so you could read along while you listen, but I just end up listening), and the voice was really bad for me.  It was just too creepy, the performer made it too much for me and I didn't make it that far before I returned it.  Not everything can be a winner!

What have you been reading lately?

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