Friday, May 28, 2010

Bookworm Mom

I love to see my children enjoying reading. There is a tiny thrill that I get every time I see them engrossed in a book. A few days ago, one of my children was reading a book. She apparently also wanted a drink of water at the same time. Instead of putting down the book to get the water, she kept reading as she walked into the kitchen and got a cup and water. I watched her as she brought her book up to eye level as she sipped her water. She didn't want to stop reading for even one second. I don't think that I can describe the joy that this little incident brought me. Because I feel that way about books as well.

I love getting to reread old favorites and discover new ones as my children grow and we read together. From that lovable pig, Olivia, to the wonders of Middle Earth, I get to experience them with my children as they read. I find it delightful.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Harry Potter Dream

After the 4th Harry Potter book came out, I began having an odd dream. In my dream, I had died. After dying, I was very upset that I did not know how the Harry Potter series ended. I was basically obsessed and angry. There was no resolution, just frustration. I would wake up from this dream quite disturbed. And the dream kept coming back. It would pop up every six months or so. At first, I was unhappy about the dream, but after a while I found myself welcoming it back. I decided that if missing the end of Harry Potter was the only thing really troubling me in my imagined afterlife, I must have my life in good order. The dream was like that stray cat that decides to adopt you. It isn't pretty, but you feel a tug of companionship. I am happy to say that since the final Harry Potter book, I haven't had the dream again.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Agent to the Stars

John Scalzi is the author of this humorous science fiction. It is a book about aliens who are concerned that humans will not accept them, so they get an agent to represent them. They don't look like humans, they have seen enough of our TV to know we fear those unlike ourselves, and they smell. They smell bad. Oh, and their native language is related through scents they emit.
Oddly enough, Scalzi seems to think all assistants' names begin with the letter M. I don't know exactly why I got hung up on this little tidbit, but I found it interesting. (Perhaps he just has an affinity for writing M names, I don't really know.) The only assistant without an M name is unnamed. Weird. And don't get me started on what it says about me personally that this was one of my major takeaways from the book.
Other than that side issue, I thought this book was slyly funny. There would be moments that needed appropriate delivery to come off as truly funny. Good thing the audio voice in my head has excellent comedic timing. If you enjoy humor that accompanies a straight face and a twinkling eye, this book is for you.
Although I am a fan of science fiction, I believe that even those who are not typically drawn to sci-fi will find this book accessible. It has a nice mix of story, personal drama, and tongue in cheek.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Gods Behaving Badly

Last night I read Gods Behaving Badly by Marie Phillips. I have been struggling with a cold and was happy to immerse myself in this fantasy. It was an easy, interesting read. The gods and goddesses of Olympus live in London, with their home falling to pieces around them. They seem to be (gasp!) losing their powers. The major mythological characters all come into play in this story. The book makes a good introduction for those who are not familiar with mythology. This tale isn't a new myth, but more of a revisiting of old mythology with a twist. Overall, I enjoyed it. Pick up this book when you are looking for a brief break from real life with an amusing story.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Books Finished in April 2010

10 Essential Foods by Lalitha Thomas
A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of leaders for the Twenty-first Century by Oliver Van Demille
A Thomas Jefferson Education Home Companion by Oliver Demille, Rachel Demille and Diann Jeppson
Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly
Fablehaven: Keys to the Demon Prison by Brandon Mull
How to write and sell magazine articles by Shirley Biagi
Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr
Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv
My not so Fairy Tale Life by Julie Wright
Parenthood by Proxy: Don't have them if you won't raise them by Laura Schlessinger
Teach the Children: An agency approach to education by Neil J. Flinders
The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien
The Man who loved Books too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett
The Renegade Writer by Linda Formicelli and Diana Burrell
The Well-fed Writer by Peter Bowerman
The Well-fed Writer: Back for seconds by Peter Bowerman
Voyager by Diana Gabaldon

*These are books that I have finished reading. This list does not include books that I have skimmed. The list does not include picture books that I have read to my children, nor does it show all the other reading I have done. These books were finished in this month, but some may have taken considerable time to read, bit by bit.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Actor and The Housewife

What if you actually met the star of your fantasies? Would you have anything to say? Would you become fast friends, much to the chagrin of your family and friends? This is the scenario Shannon Hale explores in this novel. I found it to be a delightful read, based on both the premise and the real life issues she covers. I laughed and cried, and I was touched. This book covers the life of a woman throughout several years, and touches on deeper topics than just the friendship with her once fantasy man. A respect for marriage and family, the struggle between being a mother and having a career, and how to maintain a male/female friendship over a long period are some of the underlying themes in this book.

The author is LDS and the book is written about an LDS housewife. Even with that in mind, I think this book would be appealing to a much broader audience than just the LDS community. It isn't about religion except as it plays out in this specific woman's life. This book simply attempts to answer the question--what if you met the star you daydream about?