Wednesday, February 29, 2012



It takes a lot for me to quit on a book. A LOT. I read possibly the worst book ever written, Vapor, and finished it. While some may have liked that one, I struggled to enjoy the story of a man who turns into a cloud, and the woman who loves him. 

For real.

So if I can last through that one, I can handle anything, right?


I received an ARC of Bandwith, a new book by Angus Morrison. I am all about new authors and bringing them attention. Unfortunately, I can't recommend this book.

In the interest of full disclosure, I only made it to page 47. I tried, faithful readers, heaven knows I tried. I wanted to be intrigued by the story of a guy who used to work for the CIA but now is a speech writer/adivsor for the sixth wealthiest man in the world. So there's that. Then there is the other story line about a kid in Holland who figures out how to use water as a conductor of sorts for things such as telephone calls, and transmitting video and other data. 

I think this book is a mystery, and I think it's supposed to be kind of Bourne Identity-ish in that you jump from country to country. I visited restaurants, saw a dead body in a bathtub (electrocution - not pretty, and you learn quite a bit about the process) and hopped from North America to Europe. Fun times.

Alas, I can't tell you much about this book, because I just could not get past page 47. And it was a chore to get to that point.

Considering there are a lot of people who gave Vapor rousing reviews (although I suspect that they did so just to ensure that they are not the only ones who wasted money on it), I'm sure some people will like Bandwith. I'm just not one of them. I didn't care about Hayden or the billionaire or anyone else. 

I dislike giving bad reviews to books, because I love books. But in this case, well, I've gotta do what I've gotta do.

 (just because I can't bear to totally trash the thing)

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Violets of March

I happened to receive an advanced reader's copy of The Violets of March by Sarah Jio, and I am so grateful. I'm not sure I would have discovered this little treasure otherwise.

As Emily hits her mid-thirties, her once fairytale life - a bestseller, marriage to a hot husband - has fallen into a deep ravine. To lick her wounds and sort herself out, she heads from NYC to visit her Great Aunt Bee on Bainbridge Island, a place she spent many summers during her youth. Before she spends her first night, however, she finds herself lured into a mystery after reading a diary written by a mysterious author. Her curiosity piqued, Emily begins researching not only the diary's author, but her family as well. There is romance, mystery, heartbreak and healing. This is very much a chick lit book, but good chick lit. It's a quick read, and one you will enjoy.

One Night that Changes Everything

YI read a lot of Young Adult lit. I say that I read it because I teach high school students and it helps me keep in touch with them, but really, I just enjoy the genre.

One of my most recent YA reads was One Night that Changes Everything, by Lauren Barnholdt. I started this book on the drive to work (my son drove, so let's dispel the panic that I read while driving. I WISH I could!) and finished it that night, after supper, after dishes, after kid stuff. It's a fast, breezy read, but so cute. I think I might have gotten a little teary-eyed even, but then again, I am guilty of fully investing myself in just about every book I read.

High school junior Eliza has had her precious journal, in which she writes down all of her fears, and to add to those fears, she is afraid that her ex-boyfriend, Cooper, has it. To get back the journal, she has to perform several of her fears, and Cooper seems to be behind it all. So for one night, she and two of her friends attempt to fulfill the tasks and get back her journal.

Not the most fully-developed characters, and not a story that expects you to ask a lot of deep questions, but One Night that Changes Everything is fun and silly. Silly in a good way, I guess. I added this one to the class library, and I'm sure some of the girls will check it out. I'll let you know what they say.

A Harlan Coben Two-fer

I am in danger of developing an addiction to Harlan Coben's mysteries. It started with Deal Breaker, the first in the Myron Bolitar series. I could not put it down, faithful readers. I think I read it in a day.

Recently, I picked up two more Coben books.

The first is another in the Bolitar series, Fade Away. This time, sports agent Myron Bolitar finds himself joining the New Jersey Dragons professional basketball team, despite his advanced age of 32. But alas for Myron, he isn't signed because of his hardcourt prowess, but rather because the team's owner needs his help. It turns out that star player Greg Downing has disappeared, and Myron needs to find him. There are plot twists that make sense, a little romance, and a mystery that keeps you turning the pages.


Equally as impressive is Tell No One. This, like The Innocent, is not part of the Myron Bolitar series. This time the focus is on Dr. David Beck, whose wife apparently died eight years ago. But he gets an email that makes him question all that he was led to believe. Again, Harlan Coben sends you on a merry chase, some of which you might see coming. What separates this from lesser mysteries, however, is that even when you think you can predict the twist, you cannot predict how it will play out. Another fun, great read.