Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Book Reviews

When people learn that my degree was in English, they automatically assume that I'm a good speller and love grammar. WRONG!!! I hated gammar and only endured those classes as they were a must to graduate. I chose English as my major because I love to read. Fiction, non-fiction, novels, short stories, juvenile lit, etc. But since having kids I've found it hard to find the time & energy to delve into books. I always seem to put aside reading in favor of other things - like sleep, laundry, chores, weeding, gardening, tending to kids. You know, life! But I decided earlier this year that I really needed to start reading again. So, over the past couple months I've started taking the kids to the Holladay Library every Wednesday morning. The kids love picking out their own books and then reading them in the book "hut" while I browse for my reading selections. Here are reviews for 2 of the books of recently finished, both recommended by others and both of which I liked for very different reasons.

Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins)
Excellent book for a quick, entertaining, guilty pleasure read. Recommended to me by my hairdresser who also happens to be an avid fan of Twilight (thanks Devyn @ Landis Salon). Saying this much you obviously know this book is going to be considered young adult fiction along the same lines of the Stephanie Meyers books. Despite my hesitancy in reading the book, I have to say that all said & done (or read & done), I actually really liked the book. I don't really know how to describe it, other than a fight-to-the-death match of a group of youth trying to survive a futuristic (a la Mad Maxx or something) world. But it was a great read.

Honeymoon with my brother, a memoir (Franz Wisner)
My sister Shauna read and blogged about this book. I was one of her honeymoons. So I had to check it out and read it as well to see what she was talking about. Overview: Franz is ditched at the altar and goes on an extended honeymoon with his brother Kurt (this is a true story). It's about their relationship with each other, with the world, and how they change as they travel the globe. I loved this book. It just reminded me of my own travels, and how those travels have shaped who I am today.

My first trip was in my senior year of High School. I scrimped & saved for a whole year to go to Spain for 2 1/2 weeks with my Spanish teacher. This trip awakenend the travel bug within me and was the beginning of many trips to come. This trip was probably THE most significant thing that happened in the first 18 years of my life.

Like Franz in the book, I too traveled with a sibling that I hardly knew -my sister, Shauna. After finally graduating from BYU, I wanted to reward my new found college degree with a BIG trip. So I talked my sister into traveling across England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland for a month - with nothing but a back-pack and BritRail pass. Shauna and I did NOT get along growing up. It was this trip that took us from just sisters to good friends. I'm so grateful to have shared that experience with her.

The book made me appreciate my relationship with Ryan. Other than the trip to Kentucky during the early stages of "dating," we have always traveled well together - from Arizona, Baltimore, So. California, Hawaii, the Caribbean, Las Vegas, Bear Lake, Germany, Austria, Chicago, San Francisco, and more. We both find travel to be an immediate necessity rather than a far-off dream saved only for retirement. In fact we are already planning a month long trip to Europre in Fall 2010. I hope that this passion is something we can hand down to our kids and grandkids.

S0, those are the 2 latest books I've read. I have a few more waiting in my queue at the library (hurry up and return them people, I need more books!!!). The problem I'm finding is that it's hard to browse the grown-up section with kids in tow. So, here's a simple request I have for those reading this blog, please share recommendations of your favorite books (current, past, or even your future reading choices).


Celeste said...

I LOVE to read too. You should check out -- it's a book review type site where you can hook up with friends and see what they've read, and get their reviews. I'll send you an invite

AJ, Shauna, Keegan and Camden said...

YAY, I'm glad that you liked the book..I always worry about recommending books (and thanks again for the invite to go on that trip so many years ago).

Books I've read...hmmm, this could be a long list, so I'll send you an email once I get some put together.