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Topic: Tell Us About A Book You Could Not Put Down!

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Subject: Tell Us About A Book You Could Not Put Down!
Date Posted: 3/18/2009 11:49 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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I love a good book that captures my attention from the first few pages.

So, tell us about a book that kept you captivated. You may have missed a couple of hours of sleep finishing it one night or skipped cleaning the house or ignored you mate/children because the darn book was just so good you did not want to stop reading til you reached the end!


Date Posted: 3/18/2009 11:56 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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I can think of several books in this category but the first one that comes to mind is In The Heart Of The Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick. I bought it while visiting my inlaws (paid full price!) and almost solely because I liked the cover. I started reading and it was so enthralling. It is a harrowing tale of survival. I ignored my inlaws, my children, and spouse while reading this book. I stayed up late, woke early, and finished it on the drive home.

Date Posted: 3/18/2009 12:04 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2007
Posts: 2,290
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Shelia - what a hard question to answer...there are so many.

Almost any book by Jodi Picoult but for me it was especially 19 Minutes, My Sisters Keeper and Perfect Match.  I am a big fan of hers so she always keeps me interested.  She picks topics that are current and so true to life.

Chris Bohjalian has written Law of Similars and Buffalo Soldiers.  Both really intrigued me.  They are well written and these are ones that I would never have thought I would like but ended up loving.

Jacqueline Mitchard wrote Cage of Stars and while I read it about 2 years ago I swear the book is still with me (figuritively).  I must have cried at least 6 times by Chapter 6.  Her ending to this story had me wondering if I could have done the same thing in that situation.  I have read other books by her which I have enjoyed but honestly this one is the best one.

Judy Larsen (and fellow PBSer) has written All The Numbers which is another story that has stayed with me.  I read it last year and have had some of my friends and mom read it.  We all agree that parts of it are gut-wrentching.

Others that I have not been able to put down were Water for Elephants, The Kite Runner, The Kindness of Strangers, Family History and Reservation Road.  These are books that if given the time I would have finished them in a weekend!  I love it when you find a book that you can't put down....it is amazing how I can fit time into my already busy schedule to finish a book like these. 

I am so interested in hearing what other folks say in this thread.  I can just feel that my wish list pile is about to grow. 

Last Edited on: 3/19/09 11:32 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/18/2009 2:27 PM ET
Member Since: 6/25/2007
Posts: 5,637
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This is a hard question for me to answer, as 95% of the time I read books in one sitting (whether they are great or not). But, recently I've read quite a few great books that were so captivating, I don't think I could have put them down if I tried:

Sweethearts by Sara Zarr- heartbreaking and cathartic at the same time.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins- fast-paced, some romance, a lot of action.

Cheer! by Kate Torgovnick- about a subculture (cheerleading) I know very little about. Surprisingly interesting.


Last Edited on: 3/18/09 2:27 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/18/2009 10:30 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
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I posted about this in Hidden Gems just the other day.  "The View from Garden City" by Carolyn Baugh.  It's about a US student studying in Egypt and the stories of the women she meets in the apartment building where she lives.  It reads like a memoir, though it's fiction.  I couldn't not put the book down.

Date Posted: 3/18/2009 11:45 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2008
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I just finished Fall on Your Knees and it kept me spellbound although it was so sad. 

Date Posted: 3/19/2009 9:52 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,276
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I am reading Moloka'i by Alan Brennert right now and it is definitely a "can't put it down" book for me!

Date Posted: 3/19/2009 12:18 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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I read Rebecca West's The Fountain Overflows a week or two ago, and I could not put it down.  It's one of those books where you fall so in love with the characters, you never want it to end, but cannot slow down as it is so good.

Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 3/21/2009 11:00 AM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
Posts: 3,849
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The one that first comes to mind is The Tragedy of the U.S.S. Indianapolis.  I forget who wrote it, but it was nonfiction, and probably the most horrific true story I remember reading...but I couldn't put it down.  Actually, I read almost the whole thing while working a slow overnight shift at a convenience store.  This was a good seven years ago, but that book still haunts me.

Recently, and more pleasantly, I read Arrows of the Queenby Mercedes Lackey, which I believe is the very first Valdemar book.  I don't read a lot of fantasy, but this one hooked me and I was up late into the night reading.

Last Edited on: 3/21/09 11:01 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/21/2009 12:31 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2007
Posts: 12,883
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My mother was after me for years to read Les Miserables because it was her personal favorite can't-put-it-down novel. Eventually, which is many years ago, right before the Bway show opened, I gave in and read it (Penguin edit) and -- duh duh duh dah! -- she was right. Absolutely could not stop.

Makes me wonder if I should consider wearing a hat on my head in the winter ...

PS: Honorable mentions go to Fred Pohl's Gateway and, I'm not ashamed to say, Anne Rice's The Vampire Lestat  which actually had me jumping up and down on my bed (I was, thankfully, alone in my Tom Cruise moment) with how excited I was with the way the book ended, and rushing out that very night to pick up a copy of the next book in the series.

Okay, maybe I'm a little bit ashamed to say that.

Last Edited on: 3/21/09 12:34 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Subject: Voracious by: Alice Henderson
Date Posted: 3/21/2009 4:25 PM ET
Member Since: 1/26/2009
Posts: 9
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I preordered this book before the release date and oh my was it worth it!! This book held me and didnt let go. After reading the Twilight Series and the Sookie Stackhouse series, this was a nice little change with the thrill of the hunt. This book was so good when I finished it left me wanting more! I love finding books that hold you there in the story as if you were right there in it with the characters. It is well worth your time to check it out if you enjoy ...mystery and thrill.....with a paranormal twist.

Last Edited on: 3/21/09 4:26 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/21/2009 9:01 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2008
Posts: 167
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Great question!

Lord of the Rings.  I read them while in school. Pathetic blond story- I picked up the first book around 7 pm one evening, and ended up staying up till 2 am finishing it. The next day I picked up book two around 7 pm in the evening and yes, stayed up till 2 am finishing it. Did I learn anything from this? No! The third day I picked up book three around 7 pm and yes, you guessed it, stayed up till 2 am, again. Each time I told myself, I can put this book down at anytime, the story takes forever to really get going, I'll stop before it gets really interesting, by midnight I was muttering "just one more chapter then I'll put it down" and well, thankfully I didn't have any major tests that week.

Date Posted: 3/21/2009 11:27 PM ET
Member Since: 3/4/2007
Posts: 4,582
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Most recently, Psychoville by Christopher Fowler.  The story drew me in and didn't let go until the last page. 

Date Posted: 3/22/2009 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 11/22/2007
Posts: 1
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The Twilight Series!  I was reluctant to read a "vampire" novel, it's really not my thing, but my friend assured me it was first and foremost a love story, and she was SO right.  I did not want to put them down, and I was pleasently surprised that there was not a lot of "vampire" stuff in them -- just a compelling story of relationships, even though it was from a teenager's perspective.  Pure fantasy, yes, but don't all of us have a bit of romanticism somewhere deep down inside that thrills at the prospect of such all-encompassing love . . .

Date Posted: 3/22/2009 1:22 PM ET
Member Since: 6/21/2008
Posts: 6,573
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For years a friend kept telling my to read Interview with a Vampire and the rest of the Anne Rice series.  In those days there were only three.  I kept saying, "you want me to read WHAT?"   And then out of sheer lack of anything to read, I read IWAV and Lestat in one weekend!  Couldn't get enough!  It has been thirty years, and I had the same reaction to the Charlaine Harris series about Sookie Stackhouse.  Different, but equally facinating.  Sookie and her vamp friends are a lot more fun, not so deep and dark, but couldn't stop until I read them all twice.

And, yes, you should wear a hat in winter.  Listen to your mother!!!


Subject: First to Kill
Date Posted: 3/22/2009 11:40 PM ET
Member Since: 7/25/2008
Posts: 55
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I just finished "First To Kill" by Andrew Peterson.  It's an action packed triller.  I had a hard time putting it down.  I can't wait for it's sequel.

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 12:59 PM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2009
Posts: 176
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I recently read Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah.  I absolutely loved this book.  I was a very easy read but had such a great story to tell about the lives of best friends.  It was the first book of hers that I have ever read and was so happy with it that I have Magic Hour on my TBR list.

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 3:57 PM ET
Member Since: 2/14/2009
Posts: 62
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Tell No One by Harlan Coben.  I made the mistake of taking this book along on vacation, to read on the airplane.  Well, I read it on the plane, at my in-laws, and everywhere else.  I ended up leaving the book behind because everyone saw me reading it and wanted to see what kept me so enthralled.

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 5:04 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
Posts: 5,931
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Let's see if I can narrow it down....

definitely The Terror by Dan Simmons, its a historical fiction/horror story, and even though I knew the history of what happened I was still on the edge of my seat worrying about the heroes

The Stand by Stephen King- looooong book but it was one of those where even when I had to put it down I was planning how soon I could sneak away and get back to reading it

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susannah Clarke created such a detailed and elaborate world and such cool characters- I didn't want it to end!

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas, the first half all I can think is "Oh no! Such terrible things are happening to our hero!" the second half all I can think is "Yeah! Take that villains!" 

and my number 1 favorite book: Devil in the White City by Erik Larson.  Non-fiction, but what a story.  The building of the coolest, most magical city imaginable and the devious activities of America's first serial killer, totally fascinating.

ETA: and the Harry Potter books, I read each of them in one sitting as soon as I got my hands on them.

Last Edited on: 3/23/09 5:06 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 6:12 PM ET
Member Since: 9/6/2007
Posts: 1
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Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith

Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 8:32 PM ET
Member Since: 6/28/2007
Posts: 2,787
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So far this year it is The Kindness of Strangers by Katrina Kittle....I LOVED this book & can't tell enough people about it!  I couldn't wait to find out what happened!

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 9:44 PM ET
Member Since: 7/11/2006
Posts: 1,070
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I agree with Wendy on All The Numbers and Cage of Stars.   Picoult seems to take me a while to get through for some reason.

Right now I'm reading The Help, by Kathryn Stockett - great story.....I've read on and off all day today, which is unusual for me!

Subject: Janet Evanovich
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 10:56 PM ET
Member Since: 3/10/2009
Posts: 2
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I guess all of you are deeper than me her Stepahnie Plum novels.  They make me laugh

I have read the Pern series by Anne McCaffery probably 10 times but still have a hard time putting them down.

I have only read the first 2 of the Twilight series but they are hard to put down.

There is also the Harry Potter series.

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 11:10 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2007
Posts: 3,237
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The last book I read that I could not put down was A Town Like Alice by Nevil Shute. We had company that weekend and I locked myself away one afternoon so I could finish it. In the end, I didn't feel completely satisfied with it, but he told the story in such an assured way that I just turned myself over to it. I love it when an author knows where they're going so well that you just surrender and let them carry you along!

ETA: Oh Sally, Moloka'i was definitely a can't put-it-down book for me, too! What a terrific story!

Last Edited on: 3/23/09 11:12 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/24/2009 12:19 AM ET
Member Since: 6/12/2007
Posts: 1,905
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The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo- Stieg Larsson.  I started it late in the day and found myself saying one more hour, one more hour, until I finished it at 5:30 in the morning.  Needless to say that day was horrible for me...I was on 2 and half hours of sleep.

Last Edited on: 3/24/09 12:21 AM ET - Total times edited: 1