Thursday, March 1, 2012
February Book List
Crossed by Ally Condie
In this sequel to Matched, Cassia and Ky try to find each other and stay alive in the Outer Provinces. In the process, they find unexpected new allies, and Cassia learns of The Rising, a rebellion against the Society. Ky also reveals more of his and others' secrets, proving that much of what happened in Matched had a whole other shadowy meaning. As expected, I had a hard time putting this down. Now we wait again for the finale.
Must've Done Something Good by Cheryl Cory
Despite the Sound of Music-referencing title, this book's plot has strong Jane Austen roots. After vowing to do "something good" with her life during some rough inflight turbulence, Sylvie becomes a high school English teacher. Unequipped for the job, she's overwhelmed by the kids, the responsibilities, and her fellow teachers - especially a cute male teacher who appears to hate her on sight. As the year progresses, Sylvie tackles each new challenge and learns that a lot of things aren't what they first appeared to be. These characters are fun and likable (especially Sylvie's sisters), and there's plenty of self-referential winking woven in. The plot jumps were a little abrupt at times, with a lot left unexplored, but overall I really enjoyed it!
The First Gardener by Denise Hildreth Jones
This novel focuses on a fictional First Family of Tennessee - the governor, Gray, his wife, Mackenzie, and their "miracle baby," Maddie. When tragedy strikes, the brightest light in the family's dark valley is the titular gardener, Jeremiah. I sense and appreciate the personal pain that DHJ put into this story. It's a lot weightier than her Savannah novels, although some of the characters are just as over-the-top. At one point I almost stopped reading in fear of where things were going, but I'm glad I persevered. It ends on a hopeful note and with a twist that stunned me.
Surprised by Oxford by Carolyn Weber
My first Thomas Nelson BookSneeze selection! I reviewed it here.
Mudhouse Sabbath by Lauren Winner
This book is expensive and hard to find in print, so I was thrilled to find it cheaply available for Kindle! It's a series of essays on the Jewish practices that Winner feels are most valuable for Christians. Her writing is so interesting and engaging, I'll pretty much read anything she has to say (her new memoir Still is in the mail as we speak), and this didn't disappoint. I want to incorporate some of her observations into my life. I love feeling in touch with my quarter-Jewish roots!
Books for February: 5
2012 year to date: 12