Saturday, July 28, 2007

To answer Comfy's question - book reviews :)

I didn't write a darn thing while we were at the lake. You see, efficient typing requires TWO hands, and I typically had only one available. However, we watched very little TV - mostly before 10am - and because I do NOT find Dora, Elmo, and Meteor and the Monster Trucks entertaining, I sat with the baby and read, except for the Cookie Monster segments - those still crack me up - especially Cookie attaching a huge chocolate chip creation to a rocket so he could fire it into space instead of consuming it - that struck home with me, as my mother and I ate an entire package of Oreos in under 24 hours. Yep, cookies are my downfall. Chocolate is a necessity, but one or two dark squares a day will do me. Cookies are dangerous things to have around.

So, here are a few very brief reviews:

Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
This was a fantastic little read set in the 1660s in Holland. It is about Griet, who is a maid in the household of the artist Vermeer. The history is fascinating, as is the insight to art. Paperbackswap currently has 125 copies listed - go get one.

Sisterchicks do the Hula by Robin Jones Gunn
This was a fun book. Two women (one of them pregnant) are celebrating their 40th birthdays in Hawaii. It's 99% fluff, but it is enjoyable fluff. I complained that the first Sisterchicks book had some sudden didactic moments. This book is much improved. Again, it's available at Paperbackswap, so order it to read while you watch your kids run wild in the backyard.

The Quilter's Apprentice
and Round Robin by Jennifer Chiaverini
These are both part of the Elm Creek Quilt series, and I enjoyed them immensely. I am fascinated by quilts and quilting. I hope to learn how one day. But these novels are about far more than quilting. They are about family and friendships and community. There are several more in the series, but they are not available at PBS, you'll have to go to the library. I have the third in the series on reserve and hope to pick it up today. :)

The Magic Tree House Books by Mary Pope Osborne
Charlotte Mason would turn in her grave over these twaddly little chapter books, but my son loves them. There are some fun facts in each one, they introduce concepts in history and geography, and they promote literacy. However, "Jack said" and "Annie said" and "Morgan said." Jack could "shout," Annie could "whine," and Morgan could "announce." But no, they all just "said." If I were a new reader, I'd probably find the continual use of the word "said" comforting, but as an adult reading aloud, it nearly drove me batty and I began to change the word to something more appropriate and pleasing to the ear every time I came upon it. In a year or two when #2's reading ability allows him to enjoy them for himself, he'll be surprised to find "said" over and over again. Fun reads, though, with a smattering of education to them.

HA! I finished the post before #4 awoke from his morning nap. Off to feed him and read email before I return to my desk to browse through cookbooks and make a plan for grocerying and meal preparation for the next month or two.

1 comment:

ComfyDenim said...

Ha!
I just knew you had to have taken books with you!!

I'm so glad you enjoyed them. There's nothing that's more of a bummer than taking a book on vacation and it turning out to be terrible!