Saturday, February 27, 2010

Girl Scout Cookies

It is delivery time for the Girl Scout Cookies & my wife has suckered me into doing this or at least for today. I walked with daughter getting the sales and was going to let my wife deliver but I knew that probably wouldn't happen. Oh well, at least it is not freezing cold, just plan old February cold out there. Well I'm off.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Magic Time--#13 finished

A kind of fun baseball book that had some baseball problems for me. It was about a college senior that went undrafted by the major leagues and could only get on a Cornbelt League team in small town Iowa. Unknown to the player the team in Iowa wasn't really part of the league but instead was a way to snare young men into the town where they would hopefully decide to make a life there. Okay not so bad but at one point it mentioned this player was drafted in the 4th round as a junior and only had an okay season as a senior to then go undrafted--just wouldn't happen. Maybe I follow baseball too much but that was one thing I couldn't let go. Also this being the internet time with information at your finger tips, the idea a town could get away with not being in the league just didn't seem realistic. Also it seemed the town only had single daughters around waiting to marry off to these unattached men moving into town. Throw in the fact that everyone or many in town actually travel out and scout these baseball players, looking for players that "choke" really makes no sense either. I was also caught with the question of, wouldn't spending all that money and effort for scouting and running fake intrasquad games be put to use in like a factory or something that would bring jobs and people to town rather than a dishonest scheme.

Like I said if you don't think too hard not a bad read, but any little thinking or insight and this book really doesn't hold much water. This author also wrote the Shoeless Joe book that became Field of Dreams, probably the reason for why I picked it up at the library & that it cost a whole 50 cents. Oh well it is spring training time and at least thinking about baseball is kind of fun even if the book is a little too mindless & too sappy for my taste.

It is on 2 WL so I have posted it and will hopefully be mailing it off soon. Maybe the next person will enjoy it more.

I am still reading Rising Tide and Split Second. Not sure if I will add a 3rd tonight or not. I was fighting some kind of bug this week getting chills and sinus and stiffness for a couple of days--so not much reading went on this week. Still 13 books and might get another one done before the end of the month--not too bad.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Sweet Edge--#12 finished

A very good story about a young couple going through a period where both are trying to decide if they want to be together. He goes off to the Yukon for a 50 day canoe trip by himself. He is a writer and wants to do this to gain a better insight to himself or maybe inspire himself. She is very upset about his trip and being stuck in a city, Toronto, that she doesn't know and with no real friends.

She, Ellen, meets up with a new co-worker and her girlfriend and their group. Ellen has problems from the past that shadow who she is today, her father leaving and being no part of her life at a young age, her mother being a drunk, growing up with money but in a very detached relationship with her mom.

Adam had cheated on Ellen with his long time friend Kara and Kara became pregnant. Kara and Adam are strongly into feminism and Adam was really encouraging Kara to get an abortion. The baby was lost but not really clear if a miscarriage or abortion happened. Adam even before cheating had no desire and in fact was completely against marriage and wanting kids which put the relationship with Ellen in trouble. Ellen was wanting a more traditional relationship.

The group of friends Ellen meets up with are lesbians and Kara and her group are lesbians or bisexual. I don't know if the author, Alison Pick, is just more comfortable writing about people in gay lifestyles or if there was another underlying reason for it--if so I haven't figured it out.

In the end Ellen and Adam sort of get back together and you are led to believe their relationship has probably turned a corner and is certainly stronger than before his trip. No hint given what is next in store for them though, but my guess is a more traditional relationship. I guess I shouldn't say no hint, because there was a statement when Ellen was holding the baby at the end where Deborah(her co-worker friend) said Ellen will have one of these within a year. Also there was the unopened small light present that Adam had left with Ellen before he left. She did not open it and at the very end, he hands it to her to open with obvious speculation being it is an engagement ring.

All in all I really liked this book. I thought it was a very fresh approach to relationships in todays world. The book was funny in parts and also forced you out of a comfort zone at other times. I liked that the chapters bounced back and forth from Ellen to Adam. I also enjoyed seeing the personal growth in both persons showing the time away while it caused stress and problems was greatly beneficial to both of them.

Last I checked this book was on 1 WL at PBS. I will probably post it later this week. I just was at the post office today mailing a book and will probably wait a few days to see if something else gets ordered so I can take a couple to be mailed at same time.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Charlemagne Pursuit--#11 finished

A good read. This is the 2nd book in a series with a character Cotton Malone as the main person. I jumped into this series somewhere in the middle and it seems to be an okay series. Last year I read The Venetian Betrayal which was also good. I type good but start rethinking it right after typing, maybe okay is a better description. I think I have one other book in this series an older one that I will probably try to get to also, but probably won't go out of my way tracking others down. The books are entertaining and have some interesting angles and ideas in them. Some of the characters are just not believable enough though and that really takes away from the enjoyment for me. Not bad though overall, and maybe not even quite good, but still mostly enjoyable.

My copy of this book is not postable for PBS, has a couple places where pages stuck together and writing is unreadable. Also stains, spine problem and just places throughout where food hit the pages. There are also about 10 or so notes where a previous reader became an editor and noted mistakes. Why someone would do that to a library book is a mystery to me. Oh well, I won't be mailing it off, but I will post it on my un postable list and see if anyone grabs it that way. If not maybe I will donate back to the library or take to the local used bookstore and see if I can get any credit for it and a couple others I have.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Indoor running

My running has been very spotty lately. I am mostly stuck doing my running indoors at the local community center where it is an exciting 11 laps to a mile. I do like this better than a treadmill though so I shouldn't complain too much. I was able to do 3 miles on Tuesday and a week ago Monday did 3 miles. I think it was a week and a half before that--like I said very spotty running. I am just waiting for some good weather to get some decent miles in. Doesn't look like it will be anytime soon though. Maybe I can at least get another 3 in this weekend though.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Meely LaBauve--#10 finished

I really enjoyed this book. It is about a boy in the late '50s or early '60s in deep Louisiana swampland. The boy Meely, had lost his mother at age 7 and since that time his father was mostly absent and or drunk so Meely had to pretty much growup by himself. There were several parts that were funny as well as several that were touching and also others adventurous. The book ran through the whole gamut of emotions. Meely's father still played the major role in Meely's life but his screwed up life also forced Meely to grow up fast. Their were racial issues that fit with the times as well. I would say a very good book. Toward the end there was a courtroom part, that always kind of gets me. I pretty much hate courtroom scenes in movies and in books as well. This one wasn't terrible but not sure if it really added much to the book though other than a way to tie up some loose ends.

A very good book, not at all the kind of coming of age type book I expected it to be. I was very happy I read it and will happily pass it on for someone else to enjoy. There is one other copy on PBS so no idea how long it will be before it moves, but no problem with that.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Religion--#9 finished

I had started The Religion in December of '09, I think so it took a lot longer than I thought it would to finish. Overall I enjoyed the book but it really took quite a bit of time before I really got into it. At 613 pages, it is not a short book, but those first 200 or so pages did not move very fast. It was a book that my one brother recommended so maybe my expectations were too high but I see it as a good book, not close to great though. I do give it credit for interesting times, Islamic army invading Malta in an attempt to destroy the Order to St John of something or another, an order basically founded to fight Islam, well I guess it was really to protect parts of the Holy Land but failing that just kind of became a knight type order. I haven't done any side research to see how much of this is true or not but it is an interesting story especially if mostly true.

It is many many pages of fighting and killing, it really gives you that war is hell feel throughout. The main characters have a larger than life quality which works at times but at other times it is just hard to believe. As I was reading the book, I kind of knew it was going to work out for some and others were tagged for not working out, while I wouldn't say there wasn't any surprises it was certainly not shocking. Overall though a good read but a lot of work to get through it also.

I have already posted it on PBS, I think there are 12 copies ahead of it. I had ordered a paperback copy last Spring but then over the Summer I found a hard back copy at a library sale. I was able to mail off the paperback copy about a month ago for a credit, but have no idea how long the hard back copy will be around. No hurry though, I have plenty of credits stored up right now. Along with all the credits I also have a ton of books that I need to read as well, the hard part is picking out which is next. I am now reading The Charlemagne Pursuit by Steve Berry and Meely LaBauve by Ken Wells. I will probably be picking out a 3rd over the weekend and have several I am considering right now.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Big Hair and Flying Cows--#8 finished

Well this book definitely falls into the "not my typical book" category. This is another chic-lit type book that was kind of enjoyable and certainly an easy read. Nothing spectacular going on with it but was actually kind of funny and a decent story with some decent characters. Again not what I would normally pick up but I wanted some light reading to do between reading The Religion and Mollie's Job and Big Hair and Flying Cows fit the bill.

It was mostly a feel good story about a 32 year old woman that weird things happen to as well as her struggling to find a man/relationship. Of course in the end it all works out probably better than she would have expected. No surprises and a few little plot twists but nothing major just a nice easy read. As far as chic-lit goes it was one of the better ones I have read, I would place it with Hot & Bothered as good with Chasing Harry Winston maybe not far behind and then others like The Au Pairs, The Spy with the Silver Lining and Phi Beta Bimbo as at the bottom of the barrel. Looking at that list, it is kind of sad that I have read those books in the last year plus but with almost 90 books read in the last year and 1 month I guess a few strange ones is okay.

Also Big Hair and Flying Cows is on 2 WL so I wanted to get it read and posted so I can mail it off. I just finished posting it so hopefully it will be in the mail later this week.