Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time


Title: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Author: Mark Haddon
Pages: 226
Genre: Fiction
Rating: 3/5
" It was 7 minutes after midnight."
Christopher is 15 years 3 months and 2 days old. He is an only child living with his father. He knows every prime number up to 7,057. He hates to be touched and hates the color yellow. The story begins while Christopher is out walking and finds his neighbors dog has been stabbed with a garden fork.
Christopher's story is a murder mystery. He must find who killed Wellington, the poodle. This book is his quest to find who is responsible and have them punished.
The book seems like a simple story line, but really is much deeper. Christopher is autistic. It is written in such a way that you are able to get inside of his head to understand better the idiosyncrasies of someone who is autistic.
The storyline does seem to lose focus at times, but not in a way that you cannot keep track. In fact it can really help put things into perspective.
The book was very captivating to read. You will fall in love with Christopher and hurt for him as the murderer is uncovered. The ending is quite tender. I would recommend this book to everyone. It is a very quick read, and one that will keep you thinking about autism in a whole new way.
This quote is great at explaining what goes on inside the head of someone with autism. He is quoting a Sherlock Holmes book.
" ' The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.'
"But he notices them like I do. Also it says in the book:
'Sherlock Holmes had, in a very remarkable degree, the power of detaching his mind at will.'
"And this is like me too, because if I get really interested in something, like practicing maths...., I don't notice anything else, and father can be calling me to come eat my supper and I won't hear him. This is why I am good at playing chess, because I detach my mind at will and concentrate on the board and after a while the person I am playing will stop concentrating and start scratching their nose, or staring out the window, and then they will make a mistake and I will win."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Matrimony






Title: Matrimony

Author:Joshua Henkin

Pages: 291

Rating: 3.5/5

"Out! Out! Out!"

Julian Wainwright, the only son to wealthy parents, can not leave for college soon enough. He attends a fictional college, Graymont University, and becomes friends with Carter Heinz, whom is in his fictional writing class.

The both of them are looking through the college facebook and happens upon Mia Mendelsohn. Refined and beautiful. Carter meets Mia first but already has a girlfriend. Later Julian runs into Mia while at the laundro-mat, and they hit it off immediately. They are inseparable from then on out.

During their senior year, Mia discovers her mother has cancer. To let her mother see her get married before she dies, they decide to get married right after they graduate.

The story then lets you in on their marriage and where life leads them.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book. I liked the real-ness of relationships. The fact that companionship is not perfect. You don't get married and live happily ever after. But even through all the hard times, you can still make it through.

People have described the book as quiet, and I would mostly agree. There were a couple of points that I gasped because of a surprise, but for the most part, it was really enjoyable to sit down and follow the characters through their good times and bad.

Did the book end with the possibility for a sequel?!



Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Ticket to Ride

Author: Paula McLain
Pages: 272
Date Finished: November 10, 2008
Rating: 4/5

"It was August. For days it was August."

During the summer of 1973, Jamie and her cousin, Fawn, who has come to stay for the summer, spend their days sunbathing, listening to great music, and getting into trouble. Jamie lives with her uncle, Raymond, and is excited to have someone to spend the long days with. Fawn is older, very manipulative and quite self absorbed. Jamie is only 14 and still not sure about who she is and what is important to her. She is very impressionable, and wants so much to be accepted by Fawn, her much cooler and prettier older cousin. Jamie and Fawn find themselves in a situation that really tests who they are morally and ethically. Will they do the right thing? Meanwhile, Raymond is forced to reflect on his own life, his relationship with his sister, Suzette, and how it came to be that Jamie is living with him and not her own mother.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. The author spent a lot of the book building the characters, which I liked because it gave more feeling to the storyline. I loved every character in the book because I am able to relate to all of them in one way or another. Thinking back, I was just like Jamie, confused about who I was and willing to do what I could to be accepted.

I will caution that the language in the book will be offensive to some. There is a lot of talk about drug use and some about sex.

Thank goodness, I am more sure about who I am now, and confident in myself. Those teenage years are the worst, especially while you are trying to figure out who you are...

Monday, November 3, 2008

TheFive People you Meet in Heaven



Date Finished: 11/02/2008
Pages: 208
Rating: 3/5
"Lost love is still love, Eddie. It just takes a different form, that's all. You can't hold their hand... You can't tousle their hair... But when those senses weaken another one comes to life... Memory... Memory becomes your partner. You hold it... you dance with it... Life has to end, Eddie... Love doesn't."
Eddie is a man who dies in the very beginning of the book. This is a story of his journey through the afterlife, and a theory that everyone will meet five people after they die to help them sort through their unresolved life.
Where do I start with this one? I found this book at a used book sale and just bought it to basically buy it. I have heard a lot of great reviews about this book, and was curious. I did read Tuesday's with Morrie, and thought it was slow moving, but liked it more than didn't like it.
This story is full of thought provoking quotes, and I usually like that. I liked the idea of the story, but did feel as though it was written for those who love to have a good cry while watching a Lifetime Movie with an element of cheesiness.
I liked this book okay. While reading I thought that I could predict the ending and was pleasantly surprised and pleased at the end. I wouldn't say that the heartwarming-ness (is that a real word?) touched me enough to bring an actual or even proverbial tear to my eye, but I can mark it off my TBR list.