My dogs . . .

have their own “doggie myspace” – Sergio and Izzy.
Come give them pats.

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I forgot . . .

Sea of Monsters

Recent Reads

I haven’t been keeping up so I am going to just list my recent reads and brief impressions:

Heaven Looks A Lot Like the Mall – In keeping with the summer theme of people who hate themselves just a little bit (see: Hannah BakerTyler, and even Naomi) Tessa finds herself facing some not so great memories of her life after an unfortunate dodgeball accident leaves her dead? or in a coma?  or something. . .   Tessa is not as sympathetic as Tyler or Hannah, for that matter but she does have some growing to do, some self forgiveness to practice, and she deserves a second chance.

Ironside – This is the only urban fairy tale [series] that I like.  Mostly I like the themes of identities in different worlds, the miscommunications with people we love, betrayal and sacrifice, and the blurring of good and evil, in which it is not what we accept, or what it seems.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Omnibus, Vol. 1 I admit it, I am a fan.  But you know how a movie can sometime ruin a book, or a book can ruin a movie because the characters are not what you picture in your head?  I had that problem with this collection.  Particularly with Spike.

And I suppose I should say something about the boy wizard.  I haven’t read the book, I probably won’t.  Harry was such a joyless brat in Book 5 that I came to not care whether he lived or died.  :::gasp::: I know I am a cold hearted evil grinch, but I just don’t.  But I am glad to hear this is one of the best she has done.  And as for the rest that is as far as I’ll go.  Oh but I did read the last chapter and the epilogue, and I have an opinion about that but I’ll keep my grinchiness to myself.

Twisted

This was the kind of book that I had to put down because my stomach was Twisted. You could see the train coming, but you just couldn’t get off the tracks. And yet minutes after I put it down I had to read it again, keep going until the end. There is something sad about good people who don’t know they’re good, caught in bad circumstances. Reminded me of Hannah Baker. I liked Tyler, he is a good guy who has enough of an edge to keep him real. He isn’t the loser he thinks he is. And sooner or later in life he’ll figure that out.

Tyler is not a popular kid (I love how his sister describes popularity, it is spot on in my experience, read it and find out), but over the summer his reputation has changed (ooooohhhhh……he’s dangerous), and now he has muscles, he is even a little hot and now Bethany seems like she is interested.  But Tyler doesn’t really know the “rules” and he isn’t really prepared, and like I said, he is a nice guy – he isn’t really dangerous.  And here comes the train wreck.

It is interesting that Tyler reminds me of Hannah Baker because they are both looking to take the same way out. . . .

Plain Janes

Warning: What follows in a gross generalization, but like all generalizations I think there is a kernel of truth. 

There are certain things I don’t cop to in certain company. 1) In a room full of English teachers (at least those who don’t already know) I try not to mention my dislike of The Catcher in the Rye, if those teachers are women I also omit my dislike for Jane Austen. 2) In a room full of school librarians I only whisper that I didn’t find Chris Crutcher’s latest brilliant, and that they all seem to have the EXACT SAME  voice, and 3) I am hesitant to mention in the kidlitosphere, particularly YA, that I am not a huge fan of Cecil Castellucci.  OK -don’t get me wrong I don’t hate her stuff, she just isn’t on my must read list.  I wasn’t sent over the moon by Boy Proof like many people were.  I enjoyed it, but it didn’t make my top ten.  And I still haven’t gotten around to Queen of Cool. Fabulous cover, though.

BUT . . . I did read The Plain Janes.  I don’t normally read graphic novels or comic books (except Fables, which I adore and Blankets which is in my top ten most favorite – est books), but I liked the concept of The Plain Janes – a girl gang doing guerrilla art in suburban neighborhoods.  Now that I think of it I really like the concept.  I had a quibble about the over reaction of the adults but then I thought about the crazy lady supporting the touching ban in some school (no hugs, no high fives – please) and maybe it isn’t unrealistic, over reactive; more actual crazy adult in the modern age.  So overall – I really liked this book.

John Green

Interview with John Green -you know, Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines.

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac

How much of our personality is about our memories?  How many of the things we do, or believe in, are about what others expect of us, or the corners we have painted ourselves into  due to our vehement pronouncements, pride, or inability to admit we are wrong?  If we lose four years of memories do we reinvent ourselves?  Or will we find our way back to the person we once were?

In Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac Naomi faces herself, without the past four years of memories to help define her.  A trip down the school steps has left her without four years of memories.  She no longer is consumed by yearbook activities, she might want to talk to her mother, she cannot understand what she saw in her boyfriend, Ace, and is intrigued by the new boy James.  She has a part in the school play, new friends, and a question about what kind of person she really is.

There is more to the story because James is hiding from his past, willing it not to become his future.  But it is not easy to keep that from happening.  Just like one day Naomi’s memories will return  . . . . maybe.

At first I thought I was ho hum about this book, but then I realized I consumed it.  Barely put it down for the day to day things you must do to survive, like eat.  And since the next book I read didn’t do that for me I reconsidered.

I like the questions Naomi asks herself.  The questions the story made me consider.  It was a well written, interesting read.