Summer Book Discussion 2013 #4

summer book discussionI am really slacking.  After reading Stephen King’s Under The Dome I was supposed to start The Great Gatsby, but I have yet to do that.  I even had a friend ship three books to me that she thought I would enjoy reading and I haven’t picked any of those up yet either.  I’ll blame it on vacation.  With my husband home I have been getting behind on a lot of things and reading is one of them.  So I have nothing to discuss, but I figure some of you are probably being better about reading this summer than I am.

So what are you reading?  What do you recommend?  Link up a post below about a book you have recently read, or just leave me a comment and tell me about more books I can put on my to read list and then not actually read, ha.

Summer Book Discussion #3

summer book discussionMoving right along this summer.  Less than 3 weeks into summer vacation and I have completed 3 books.  Although, the last one really could have been 4 books with its over 1000 pages and all.  I finished reading Under the Dome this weekend.  And I needed a few days to process everything.

First of all, it’s no shock to me that Stephen King wrote an awesome book.  Even though it is extremely long it really was an easy read.  I thought for sure it was going to take me all summer to get through it.  It took me a week.  Of course the fact that I couldn’t put it down might have also had something to do with that.  Stephen King is really a brilliant man.  There is a reason he’s one of the top authors of our time.

I have been noticing a lot of self published authors popping up.  This is all fine and good for ebooks and little instructional type books, but there’s a certain finesse it takes to write a good fiction book and Stephen King knows that finesse.  First of all, everything he writes is researched to make it as believable as possible.  That’s important.  That’s what draws you into a book is the belief that the unbelievable could actually happen.  Being able to picture life inside a dome as if you’re fish inside a fish tank with people looking in on you is one amazing talent and there’s no doubt about it Stephen King did that.  And he did that because he consulted someone on the medical aspect of things as well as the environmental.

This book had everything in it.  From fights, to murder, to intrigue, and even love scenes.  The way each character related to one another was perfect.  It felt like you would expect small town America to feel like.

This book was literally a lifetime in the making.  At the end of the book he put some author notes.  He began writing this book in 1976, but got stuck and didn’t come back to it until 2007.  And even still it wasn’t published until 2009.  I really appreciated the writing that much more knowing just how much of the author’s heart and sole was actually put into that book.

One of the most difficult things about this book was the massive character list.  I’m sure that was intimidating for him to write as well, but trying to remember who everyone was became sort of hard for the reader.  That was the only thing that slowed me down in reading it, but even still it was done very well. I highly recommend this book.  Do not let the size of it intimidate you.  You will not be disappointed in it.

Next book on my to read list is The Great Gatsby.  I am hoping to dive into that later today.  I needed a few days to process Under the Dome, but I think I’m good to go now.

What are you reading?  Tell me in comments or link up to a book review on your own blog if you’d like.

Summer Book Discussion 2013 #2

summer book discussion

I was going to wait until Tuesday to do this, but I have a lot to discuss.  Who knows, maybe I’ll end up doing two Summer Book Discussions this week.

I finished reading The Body of Christopher Creed on the 4th of July.  Another relatively easy read.  It’s a young adult book after all.  My daughter had warned me that it had a lot of bad words in it.  I don’t really know what her definition of a lot is, but I didn’t find it all that bad.  She was probably concerned that if she didn’t warn me I’d be upset that she was being required to read a book with bad words.

It wasn’t a bad little mystery.  I think it was something teenagers could easily relate to.  I kind of felt like it resembled the movie Stand by Me.  More so in the beginning of the book really though when three boys are talking about a boy who has gone missing and is either thought to have run away, or committed suicide.  The boys being curious about what happened to him set out to find answers.  Along the way though one of the boys, Torey, ends up distancing himself from this group of boys and starts hanging around the school slut and the school bully.  Only he learns that their reputations are deceiving.

His best friends from childhood turn on him and even begin pointing fingers at him, but the school bully took the blame for many things that Torey had done to protect him.  He turned out to be a much more loyal friend than his life long buddies had been.

Does Torey find Christopher Creed?  Is he dead or alive?  That you will have to read to find out, but I was impressed with the story line.  It definitely kept my interest.

Right after I finished reading The Body Of Christopher Creed I picked up Stephen King’s Under The Dome.  Turned out my neighbor had it so I didn’t have to wait until I went to the library to start reading it.  And this is probably one of the longest books I have read in a while.  Looking at it I was thinking this is going to take me the rest of the summer to read.  However, I started reading it on Friday and I’m already over 400 pages in.  And let me just say, Stephen King does not disappoint.  The TV program that is out this summer that was created after the book is not completely following the story line of the book.

Stephen King sure has a way of painting a picture though.  And a gory one at that.  I found myself wincing and closing my eyes at many points trying not to see what I just read.  And here’s the biggest thing; I don’t want to leave my town, ever again.  Seriously, the thought that an invisible dome could just cover my town at any moment is terrifying.  The fact that I could be innocently driving to the next town over to go to Target one day and just smash right into this dome and die, never seeing what was coming has me petrified.

I probably shouldn’t read or watch this kind of stuff.  I mean years and years ago I watched some movie (I can’t for the life of me think of what it’s called) where a woman got into her shower that had a glass shower door that jammed shut and the shower turned to burning hot water.  The woman ended up burning to death in a shower.  I vowed then and there that I would never have a shower door.  Stuff like that just can’t happen with a shower curtain.  My husband thinks I’m nuts and now he’ll think I’m even more nuts when I say we are not allowed to cross the town line ever again.  I’m going to have to convince our kid’s doctor to open an office in our town I think.

Surely reading further into this book will help my anxiety level, right?  One can hope, but hey this is what Stephen King does to me.  He makes the completely unthinkable not only thinkable, but a possibility as well. 

At the rate I’m going with this book I think I could have it done within the next week or so and I mine as well read another book that was recreated by Hollywood.  Next up on my to read list is The Great Gatsby.  My cousin had given this to my daughter recently and she read it.  I don’t remember ever having to read it for school.  Thought now might be a good time to pick it up since we have a copy in the house.

What book are you reading now?  What’s next up on your list?  Leave a comment or link up a book review post below.

Summer Book Discussion 2013 #1

summer book discussionWay back in June I said I was ditching my summer book club that I did last year for a summer book discussion.  What’s the difference?  Well, instead of me telling you what to read I want you to just share with me what you’re reading.  Tell me about it and let me know if it’s worth the pick up.

And I’m going to do the same for you.  Tell you what I’m reading.

My kids just got out of school a week ago.  I went to the library with them last Wednesday, our first official day of summer break.  And they got all signed up for our library’s wonderful summer reading program and started picking out their summer reading books.  I like to encourage them to get the mandatory reading out of the way so we searched for the books on their summer reading list.

First we looked at the 9th grade list for my oldest.  I quickly picked out some books that I thought sounded interesting.  She narrowed it down and opted for The Body Of Christopher Creed by Carol Plum-Ucci.  A book totally up my alley, I love a good mystery.

Then we went on the hunt for my middle daughter’s books.  We had chosen a few on her list that seemed like they would be in her reading level before we left home, one of which was Old Yeller.  First she wanted to find The River by Gary Paulsen.  She had read Hatchet so wanted to read The River, but it wasn’t on the shelf.

So then she wanted to try Skeleton Man by Joseph Bruchac.  That we found and she did a quick test to see if she could read it (read the back cover to see if she understood it, then read the first page to see how many words she would have trouble reading) and it passed the test.

But I wanted her to see Old Yeller too so we looked for that.  That one did not pass the test.  She was struggling with too many of the words on the first page.  Understandable, while it didn’t have a lot of difficult words it just wasn’t a lot of words that you see much these days.  None the less, I wanted it so we got it anyways.

And then I didn’t sit down to read it until Saturday afternoon while the two older girls were out with their grandparents, the baby was down for a nap, and my son was watching something on TV.

It was a quick read for me, after all it was something that was in the Children’s section of the library.  I have also read it before, but it hadn’t been since I was a child.  And well, it’s a classic so of course you can read it again.

Old Yeller

On the off chance that you haven’t heard about the story of Old Yeller here’s a little synopsis of it.  Old Yeller is the story of a boy and his dog.  Travis is a young boy from the 19th century whose father has to go away to try to make some money for the family.  Travis is left to take on the job of man of the house while his dad is away.  And he takes this position very seriously.  Doing all of the hard menial tasks around the farm and hunting for his family.

But the last thing he thought he wanted was a dog, especially the trouble maker that Old Yeller was.  Little did he know he would develop a bond with Old Yeller.  He would become a great help to him in protecting his little brother from a bear attack, training a cow to stand still to be milked, capturing pigs to be tagged, and even saving his life from being gored by said pigs.  And in the end he has to do the unthinkable to this man’s best friend when the dog gets sick.  He must kill Old Yeller (yes I’m giving away the ending, but I figure unless you’ve been living under a rock you probably already knew this and well quite frankly in the very beginning of the book it says he will have to kill the dog so I figure I’m not giving away anything the author doesn’t already in the very first chapter).

What I won’t tell you is if Travis comes to terms with what he had to do or not, that you will just have to read the book to find out.

It was a nice simple read to start out the summer with.  Next up, now that my oldest has finished it, is her summer reading book choice of The Body of Christopher Creed.  She just finished it and it needs to be returned in a week so I’ll need to get cracking on it.  It isn’t going to be quite as easy of a read as Old Yeller was.  My oldest and I actually are switching books, she has begun reading Old Yeller.

I am thinking when I go back to the library next week I would like to find the book Under the Dome by Stephen King.  We have been watching the drama that just started on TV that’s based off this book and it is extremely interesting.  I would love to read the book.

What have you been reading this summer?  Feel free to link up below to a blog post about a book you have been reading this summer, or just tell me all about it in comments.