Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Summer Affair by Elin Hilderbrand

I absolutely have a thing for beach books and then you add the fact that I'm completely fascinated with glass-blowing, I knew that this book would have all the ingredients for a great novel. But I think I should have kept my expectations down just a tad, because I really wasn't prepared to read 400 some pages of Sheila cheating on her husband. I know - duh, Kim, "A Summer AFFAIR". For some reason I had it in my head that it was referring to a grand party. After all, the story revolves around the elaborate planning of the Nantucket's Children Summer Gala. Yeah, that was my bad. Still, I have little to zero tolerance for people who have affairs and because the story centers around Sheila, I really had no desire to see things work out for her and felt no sorrow when she struggled. I just felt like - "girl, you made your bed, so deal with it". Oh and then the ending....grrrr.....I WISH I could go off on that one, but there may be some of you who are really interested in this one and I don't want to ruin it for you.

Even still, though I wasn't jumping up and down over the story line and there were times that I could slapped Sheila Cook more than once, and I wasn't satisfied with how it all turned out... I found myself captivated by Elin Hilderbrand's writing style. The story itself didn't completely turn me off to Elin as an author and I've heard wonderful things about Barefoot, which is still on my TBR list. I'm definately giving her another shot, but just keeping my expectations a little bit more in check.

Sheila Crispin Cook, mother of four young children and nationally renowned glassblower, bites off more than she can chew when she agrees to co-chair the Nantucket's Children Summer Gala. Sheila is asked to chair the benefit, in part, because she is the former high school sweetheart of rock star Max West. Max agrees to play the gala and it looks like smooth sailing for Sheila-until she promises a "museum-quality" piece of glass for the auction, offers her best friend the catering job, goes nose-to-nose with her Manhattan socialite co-chair, and begins a "good-hearted" affair with the charity's Executive Director, Lockhart Dixon.Hearts break and emotions are pushed to the limit in this riveting story of one woman's attempt to deal with loves past and present, family, business, and high-powered social pressures. Elin Hilderbrand's unique understanding of the joys and longings that animate women's lives will make this her newest summer bestseller.

Rating: **

Recommend: Meh.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Cause That's How We Roll

The 24-hr-read-a-thon was somewhat of a success. I say somewhat because a bunch of girls got together over at our friend Julie's home with books in tow and ready to enjoy a full long day of catching up on some much needed reading and relaxation...
Aww...can't you feel the heat of the sunshine just by looking at this picture? That would be myself, Amy and Julie out on the lawn reading and Tabby up on the porch. It was so lovely and so serene. And I even have the sunburned back to prove the hours of enjoyment!
Books, bare feet and blankets.
This is not a posed picture, we truly were sitting in our chairs, enjoying each other's presence and reading our books with either a glass of wine or in my case a bottle of G2 :-) Divine isn't it?
But then.....
We started to get a little distracted...
Maybe the heat was getting to us....
Or maybe we were taking an afternoon break to celebrate Melanie's birthday ghetto style. (click on picture for larger view)
Ain't nothing but a G-thing, right Rachel?
Here's Master-C blowing out her candle and receiving her dirt cake. (which is basically a cake made to look like a potted flower)
Cause that's how we roll yo.
It was such an awesome weekend. I almost finished one book, but I had puppy-duty from 5pm on and they took up a lot of time to watch. We are definitely going to do this again! And next time, collectively we'll track how many pages read.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

24 Hour Read-A-Thon (or Don't Be a Hater Cause I'm a Booknerd!)

I'm finally going to do it!

This Saturday, April 18th is the 24 Hour Read-A-Thon!! I'm super excited, a little nervous and a tad bit overwhelmed. And because I didn't want to feel like a complete geek and isolated all alone, I've asked some of my girl friends to join me for a relaxing day of nothin but readin in the sun! (I might have just left out the words "Read-A-Thon" when explaining it to them) But even still, there's some interest and we're all pretty pumped up to give it our best shot, even if we don't make it the full 24 hours!

Books will be read, sweet tea will be served, lounge chairs will be brought, snacks will be prepared and hopefully tans will be gained! Yea!!!

I'm going to do my best to get access to a computer while at Julie's house, cause sadly I do not own a laptop, and post pictures and updates of our girly reading weekend!

I don't have over ambitious expectations to be knocking out a stack of books, but I'm selecting a choice few I've had in mind!

And dude, if you're all about showing some love and supporting this endeavor, please make a donation over at Saint Jude Children's Hospital!

More to come!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Riven by Jerry B. Jenkins

This book took me FOR-EV-ER to read. I thought that because I loved the Left Behind series, I couldn't go wrong with another book by Jerry B. Jenkins, but dude, seriously 544 pages?? I honestly could have done without the first 350-400 pages and still have gotten the same message without ALL THE DETAIL. Brady Wayne Darby's life was described in detail from the time he was 14 through 33 years of age! For reals! Less is more my friend, less is more.

The other thing that was very difficult for me was the character descriptions. I just felt like they were inaccurate to what someone of that age would be like or how they would think. At one point he described a young girl in a scene and I could have sworn she was like 5, but then I find out she's like 12 - what??! It was hard to follow and even after 500 some pages and all the drama, I didn't feel much for the characters. And seriously, I should have been bawling by the time this sucker was over. It really did have a great message, but the delivery really lacked for me. Sorry folks, I was just overall disappointed with this one.

Description: When a condemned man with nothing to lose meets one with nothing to gain, everyone washed by the endless ripples of that encounter will forever recall the day a little bit of heaven invaded a whole lot of hell. Brady Wayne Darby and Thomas Carey could hardly have been more disparate individuals. Yet when Darby, a no-account loser raised in a dingy suburban trailer park, encounters Carey, a weary man of God, an entire--state indeed, a nation--is affected. Embark on a wondrous journey where death, guilt, and despair are unfathomably trumped by rebirth, forgiveness, and hope.

Author Jerry Jenkins says: “This is the novel I have always wanted to write. I determine whether a fiction idea has merit by how long it stays with me. Does it rattle in my brain, and do I find myself telling it to my wife and other confidants? Is it the type of a tale that will draw me back to the keyboard every day? Two-thirds of my published books have been novels, and only three have had that effect on me. I give my all to every one, but special joy and anticipation attend those that genuinely feel like the best ideas. Riven is my fourth such labor of love. The two main characters have remained in my memory since high school 40 years ago. The story idea is perhaps 20 years old. And those mystical, interweaving elements I hope make it all work have been tugging at me for more than a decade. If a novelist has a life’s work, this is mine. I hope in the end you agree and that Riven stays with you long after the final page.”

Rating: **

Recommend: Not really.