Mary B. (booksrfun) - Reviews

1 to 16 of 16
The Alchemist
The Alchemist
Author: Paulo Coelho, Alan R. Clarke (Translator)
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 754
Review Date: 9/27/2009
Helpful Score: 2


I liked this book quite a lot and it was a quick read. An inspiring story about searching for what is truly important and getting all you can out of life...Taking risks, and focusing on your goals. Not a self-help book; told in more of a fable format. The story dragged for me a little bit at times, but sometimes less action and more reflection is a good thing. I kept thinking as I read this book that it would be one that I would need to reread in order to understand and appreciate it more fully. Maybe I will someday.


Angels & Demons (Robert Langdon, Bk 1)
Angels & Demons (Robert Langdon, Bk 1)
Author: Dan Brown
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 3675
Review Date: 9/27/2009


Loved this book even more than The DiVinci Code. Fast-paced action, interesting factual information, likeable, complex characters. A book you can immerse yourself in.


Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World
Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World
Author: Vicki Myron
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 542
Review Date: 2/12/2011
Helpful Score: 3


This was a very enjoyable book that almost made me wish I lived in Iowa and had a cat as a pet. I wondered how an entire book could be written about a cat's life but found that I enjoyed the side stories about Iowa history and also found it interesting how Vicki's hardships and heartaches were interlaced in the story. A little repetitious when it came to all the articles and publicity about Dewey but he was certainly a very likeable cat character and I enjoyed reading about him. Recommend for a light and quick read.


Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic
Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic
Author: Martha Beck
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 151
Review Date: 10/9/2009


I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The author has a wonderful way of writing which is hilarious and engaging while also capturing the serious nature and heartbreak of the subject. A true story with difficult to believe events surrounding the pregnancy and birth of her downs sydrome son, Adam.


The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
Author: Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 1401
Review Date: 10/25/2009


Loved it! Loved characters! Especially Isola. Highly recommend. It was both historically interesting as well as very entertaining.


Learning to Breathe
Learning to Breathe
Author: Karen White
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 78
Review Date: 9/27/2009
Helpful Score: 1


This book was a good vacation book and kept me entertained until the end, but the main character, Brenna, drove me crazy. I kept wanting her to just say what she was thinking to Pierce instead of keeping it to herself. She collects old war-time letters and the angle about her reading to Pierce's father was interesting. And her sisters were entertaining. The scrapbooking get-togethers made them all seem like such every day people. The story had enough complexity and different angles to make it entertaining and interesting.


Life of Pi
Life of Pi
Author: Yann Martel
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 3371
Review Date: 9/27/2009


The first few pages found me almost giving up on this book as it just wasn't making sense and seemed so off the wall, but at the advice of someone who had read it, I stuck with it and it didn't take long before it sucked me in. It's an outrageously unlikely story told as a memoir, and it's told in such a convincing fashion with such convincing explanations with regard to animal behavior that I found myself checking the back cover to see if it was based on a true story. It gets even more ridiculously impossible as it goes on but never stops being convincing and entertaining. And despite the fact that the book has only one human character throughout most of it, I found it to be hugely entertaining, fascinating, well-written and a book I would recommend to anyone.


Love Walked In
Love Walked In
Author: Marisa de los Santos
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 75
Review Date: 7/28/2010


Enjoyed this book very much and loved de los Santos' writing style. Witty banter, likeable characters, and interesting story with enough twists and turns to keep it interesting.


Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World's Worst Dog
Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World's Worst Dog
Author: John Grogan
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 278
Review Date: 6/17/2009


An entertaining and quick read. Heartwarming story of a young family and their beloved pet, from puppyhood to old age. Anyone who has ever had a dog can relate to this story and Marley's antics.


Moloka'i
Moloka'i
Author: Alan Brennert
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.3/5 Stars.
 409
Review Date: 7/13/2012


I enjoyed this book a great deal. My favorite fiction books are ones with interesting historical information and this one did not disappoint. I learned how little I knew about what went on in Hawaii and the quarantining of the people struck down with leprosy. Fascinating, heart-breaking story. But also inspiring and a great testimony to the resiliency of humans is the face of trauma.


Shantaram
Shantaram
Author: Gregory David Roberts
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 83
Review Date: 6/17/2009
Helpful Score: 5


This is the best book I've read in a long time. It was given to me by my son and I held on to it for over a year before I ever attempted it (the size is intimidating.) Since my son and I do not generally have the same taste in books (I go for much lighter reading than he does), I didn't expect to get through it but I was so pleasantly surprised and very happy that I finally opened it. I knew nothing about India but this book really brought that country and its people alive for me and made me want to visit someday. I really enjoyed the character Prabaker -- he was hilarious and so, so lovable. I thought Lin (the author and main character) came across a bit full of himself at times, but his writing is excellent and his descriptions are just great! I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a long, involved, but really fascinating story.


A Stolen Life: A Memoir
A Stolen Life: A Memoir
Author: Jaycee Dugard
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 304
Review Date: 7/13/2012
Helpful Score: 1


Wow! I honestly didn't expect to think much of this book since I knew the whole story from reading news reports but I found Jaycee to be truly inspiring. Talk about someone who has suffered, lived to talk about it, but chooses to not live in the past. Even while still captive her writings showed her positive spirit. I can't even imagine what she had to endure as a young 11 year old, and throughout the 18 years that were stolen from her but she does not seem nearly as bitter as I think I would be. Very honest account of her ordeal.


Those Who Save Us
Those Who Save Us
Author: Jenna Blum
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 490
Review Date: 7/13/2012


Great historical fiction. Another holocaust story but told from the perspective of a German woman forced into serving as a high-ranking nazi officer's mistress in order for her to survive and to care for her young child (from an affair with a Jewish man she had hidden but who was discovered and sent to the camp.) The book alternates back and forth between present day in which the young child has grown up to be a history professor and the war years which works very well in unraveling the story slowly.


Why I Jumped: My True Story of Postpartum Depression, Dramatic Rescue & Return to Hope
Review Date: 6/17/2009
Helpful Score: 2


An interesting and true story which provides fascinating insight into a woman's struggle with depression. The story behind her depression which leads to a dramatic suicide attempt, and what helped her in the aftermath of that attempt.


The Year of Magical Thinking
The Year of Magical Thinking
Author: Joan Didion
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 266
Review Date: 7/13/2012
Helpful Score: 1


Good writing and certainly an honest account of the author's grief over losing her husband. I just couldn't get past all the name-dropping and every other paragraph reminding me of their wealth and position in society. One message that I'm not sure was intended by all that garbage but which I received was that no matter how much money and fame you have, it doesn't protect you from grief or make those feelings any easier. And to a large extent the grieving process is universally similar for all of us. This book struck me as extremely self-indulgent and overall I didn't care for it much.


Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague
Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague
Author: Geraldine Brooks
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 64
Review Date: 4/26/2009


A really interesting story based on life in England during the time of the plague in the 1660s. Very well-written.


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