Lisa A. - Reviews

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The Alchemist: A Fable About Following Your Dream
Review Date: 4/28/2009


I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book - so much that I picked up several other Coelhos. However, I can't seem to remember what the book was about. My favorites always stick with me.


Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons
Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons
Author: Lorna Landvik
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 818
Review Date: 8/7/2008


A lovely story of 5 friends journeying through life together over the decades. A lot of fun and humor. The story is told through their book club meetings and memories. I always enjoy Landvik's books.


Anna Karenina (Audio CD) (Abridged)
Anna Karenina (Audio CD) (Abridged)
Author: Leo Tolstoy, Laura Paton (Narrator)
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 12/13/2009
Helpful Score: 1


My first Russian novel. Thank goodness I listened to it, and the abridged version at that. It was very "I love you, I hate you. I love life, I want to commit suicide." And inference is a necessity. I had no idea two of the characters were having an affair until they had a baby! If I do another Tolstoy, it will be definitely be abridged and in the car!


Baby Proof
Baby Proof
Author: Emily Giffin
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 9
Review Date: 3/25/2008


Fast and easy read. A chick-lit story in the ultimate sense. Silly girl, love story. The story made me mad - I'm not interested in reading another Giffin.


The Birth of Venus
The Birth of Venus
Author: Sarah Dunant
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 753
Review Date: 3/14/2008


LOVED this book! It was romantic and evoked many emotions. Though a slow moving tale, I couldn't put it down and think of it often even though I read it several years ago.


Body Surfing (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Body Surfing (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Author: Anita Shreve, Lolita Davidovich (Narrator)
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 3.2/5 Stars.
 9
Review Date: 6/17/2010


A story about a twenty-something tutor and the way her life intersects with the family of five she moves in with. Typical Shreve - relationshipy, set in the same house on the New England coast, sad in a somehow un-painful way, entertaining. A lot of twists in the plot - just when I thought I had things figured out, Shreve took us in a new direction. And yet it still ended pretty much how I thought it would. Always a nice break from the usual.


Caravan
Caravan
Author: Dorothy Gilman
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 38
Review Date: 3/14/2008


Full of adventure! I like Mrs. Pollifax better, but an easy, quick read.


Change of Heart
Change of Heart
Author: Jodi Picoult
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 451
Review Date: 11/3/2009
Helpful Score: 2


A compelling Picoult - it jumps right in! Picoult has the tendency to include too many foci in her books (i.e. The Tenth Circle - cartooning, sled dog races, constellations - but wait, the book is actually about murder and rape) and she kept it relatively simple in Change of Heart. I figured out what the "big reveal at the end" was pretty early on and I wish we hadn't gone there. I found some of the jumps between POVs jarring, and Maggie was especially whiny and potty-mouthed. And I wish Maggie's father had played more of a role.

What was really interesting about this book was the various ways of looking at the messiah. I found the background on the non-canonical gospels fascinating - I'd like to read more on them on my own. I'm still tossing around the story in my head.


Change of Heart (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Review Date: 10/12/2009


A compelling Picoult - it jumps right in! Picoult has the tendency to include too many foci in her books (i.e. The Tenth Circle - cartooning, sled dog races, constellations - but wait, the book is actually about murder and rape) and she kept it relatively simple in Change of Heart. I figured out what the "big reveal at the end" was pretty early on and I wish we hadn't gone there. I found some of the jumps between POVs jarring, and Maggie was especially whiny and potty-mouthed. And I wish Maggie's father had played more of a role.

What was really interesting about this book was the various ways of looking at the messiah. I found the background on the non-canonical gospels fascinating - I'd like to read more on them on my own. I'm still tossing around the story in my head.


Crooked House
Crooked House
Author: Agatha Christie
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 5
Review Date: 7/29/2009


What a fabulous Christie novel! There were some great twists and turns and the ending was truly a surprise. I will definitely be sharing this book with my friends and family.


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Author: Mark Haddon
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 4401
Review Date: 3/25/2008


Sweet story. Interesting look at a teenager with autism and the world from his point of view. A fast and easy read.


Day of the Dead (Walker Family, Bk 3) (Audio CD) (Abridged)
Review Date: 6/1/2010


Really sick story. I was surprised that Jance could write such icky things! But it was interesting and fast-paced and I wanted to keep listening. I'm looking forward to another book in this series.


The Devil's Queen (Audio CD) (Abridged)
The Devil's Queen (Audio CD) (Abridged)
Author: Jeanne Kalogridis, Kate Reading (Narrator)
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 9
Review Date: 10/19/2010
Helpful Score: 1


What a fascinating, intriguing tale! This is the story of Catherine de Medici, the mother-in-law to Mary Queen of Scots. Catherine is a contemporary of Henry VIII's - it's a new and interesting perspective on a popular time in history. The story includes births, deaths, murder, war and the dark arts - a combination that does not disappoint! I would love to learn more about the French court. Another fun and interesting Kalogridis.


DK Eyewitness Travel Guides: Dublin (Eyewitness Travel Guides)
Review Date: 9/28/2007
Helpful Score: 1


Super helpful, even though it's a few years old. Light weight and easy to carry around the city.


Don't Sleep with a Bubba: Unless Your Eggs are in Wheelchairs
Don't Sleep with a Bubba: Unless Your Eggs are in Wheelchairs
Author: Susan Reinhardt
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 14
Review Date: 3/25/2008


Full of potty humor. A devastating story that is told through humor in a way that made think the author is pathetic. I couldn't even finish the book.


A Fatal Grace (Three Pines, Bk 2)
A Fatal Grace (Three Pines, Bk 2)
Author: Louise Penny
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 103
Review Date: 10/4/2011


I really enjoyed this novel. Again, Penny paints the art, and the scenes, right in front of your eyes. The characters are interesting and dimensional and human.


Gone (Alex Delaware, Bk 20) (Audio CD) (Abridged)
Review Date: 3/14/2008


Would have been scary if I had read it, not listened to it. Held my attention the entire time. A big twist at the end keeps you guessing. Defintely a good audio book!


Good In Bed (Cannie Shapiro, Bk 1) (Audio CD) (Abridged)
Review Date: 3/25/2008


My least favorite Weiner book. Though it does deal well with women off different sizes and our self-consciousness, a lot of the characters were unbelievable and distracting. Entertaining, none-the-less.


The Historian
The Historian
Author: Elizabeth Kostova
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 983
Review Date: 3/25/2008
Helpful Score: 1


First 100 pages are difficult. Once you get to 101, the story takes off and is intriguing. I loved it and found I couldn't put it down. Dark and intelligent.


House Rules (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
House Rules (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Author: Jodi Picoult
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 18
Review Date: 10/21/2011


The Big Reveal was pretty obvious by the halfway point in the book. And Picoult did not do a great job of wrapping this story up - she more or less just ended it at a time in the story when the outcome could vary significantly.

However, it was an interesting and entertaining story. House Rules examined the impact of having a family member with Asperger's. In Picoult's usual fashion, we heard the story from many different points of view. It was interesting to hear how each family member coped with disease. I learned a lot about Asperger's; the book also prompted me to think about what it would be like to have a family member on the Autism scale.

What I did find unrealistic was the introspection attributed to Jacob, the kid with Asperger's. A person twice Jacob's age, with weekly therapy, wouldn't be able to identify all of the motivators and emotions that Jacob did.


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