Captain Wentworth’s Diary by Amanda Grange

Captain Wentworth\'s Diary Yay! My picture placement is working again! Thanks Mike.

Anyway, I love this series of books. It started with Mr. Darcy’s Diary. Then there was Mr. Knightley’s Diary. Now Captain Wentworth. In Mr. Darcy’s Diary, she did a lovely job of giving Mr. Darcy motives for all his behavior. That’s a little more difficult with Capt. Wentworth because Jane Austen pretty well lined it all out in Persuasion. To make this one a little more interesting, the diary starts 8 years before the action of Persuasion and invents Anne and Capt. Wentworth’s first romance.

I can’t wait for the next. I think it’s Edmund Bertram’s diary. Glee!

The World Before Her by Deborah Weisgall

The World Before Her This mostly takes place in Venice. 2 women visit the city with their husbands 100 years apart. The first woman is Marian Evans, also knows as George Eliot. She is visiting the city with her husband. The love of her life, who she never officially married, died. She married this much younger man who adores her. The second woman is on her 10 year anniversary trip with her much older husband. She has found that her husband no longer adores her.

Some of the similarities between the two women were really glaring. I didn’t need to be beat over the head with it. Also, I thought it would have been more cohesive if the second woman had known she was following in the footsteps of George Eliot so to speak. It seemed a little disjointed.

The Girl With No Shadow by Joanne Harris

The Girl with No Shadow This is the sequel to Chocolat. The long-awaited sequel. And I will never get the 5 days back that I spent reading it. Or not reading as the case may be. I avoided going to bed so I wouldn’t have to read this book.

Vianne has gone from a strong, independent, unique woman to a mousy, bland, boring pushover. Anouk is a stupid kid. Roux doesn’t show up at all for 200 pages and then only gets a walk on part. The new characters are worse. Thierry, Vianne’s boyfriend, is pompous, deluded, and narcissistic. Zozie is just evil incarnate. It was very hard to read the book when I didn’t like any of the characters. Bleh.

Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar

Lonely Werewolf Girl The Scottish werewolf clan MacRinnalch is in upheaval. The thane recently died from complications following an attack by his youngest daughter who has since been banished and is wandering London addicted to laudanum and yearning for music from The Runaways. She is the eponymous lonely werewolf girl. A couple of teenage humans take her in and care for her (often against her will). They are hilarious. Also hilarious are the Fire Elemental Queen and her adoptive-niece-elect.

There are so many more characters, that I just don’t have the bandwidth to describe them all, but I thought it was great fun!

Things I Want My Daughters To Know by Elizabeth Noble

Things I Want My Daughters to Know: A Novel I love Elizabeth Noble’s books. They are a bit like Cool Whip for the brain, but I like them anyway.

The good news is, the mother dies at the beginning of the book and gets that out of the way early. The rest of the book is about her 4 daughters and her husband and how they cope with her death. She also wrote each of them a letter telling them something important. The best part was, the dead mother was always respected, unlike so much fiction in which the dead mother was a control freak and an idiot.

The Fug Awards

Go Fug Yourself: The Fug Awards It is such a guilty pleasure to make fun of incredibly rich and famous people who wear really ill-advised outfits. Like I have such great taste, or the millions of dollars required to buy expensive clothes no matter how bad they are.

This book nominates celebrities for various awards for bad taste in clothes, accessories, hair, etc., then selects a winner in each category. The descriptions of the awards and the reasons for each nominee’s nomination are hilarious.

Please see for examples.

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

People of the Book: A Novel I didn’t like this one as much as The Year of Wonders. This was just a little too much story. It seemed a little unwieldy. The premise is really good, though.

A book restorer is asked to examine a very old (like centuries old) Jewish text. She finds some strange items in the book. A moth wing, a cat hair, etc. The book tells the story of how each of those things gets in the book, thereby telling it’s history.

Losing It: And Gaining My Life Back One Pound at a Time by Valerie Bertinelli

Losing It: And Gaining My Life Back One Pound at a Time This is pretty much a biography of Bertinelli’s weight. There are some other personal details in there. About her getting her gig on One Day At A Time. About her marriage to Eddie Van Halen. I liked those parts.

I didn’t like the chapter that was basically an ad for Jenny Craig diets. Also, it seemed like she’s spent a lot of time in therapy because she spouted a lot of what sounded like “realizations” she’s made about her past and how it led to her present, yadda, yadda, yadda.

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks

Year of Wonders This was a great book! It’s the plague in England. A little town decides to quarantine themselves so they will not spread the virus to the neighboring villages. This is the story of that year told from the perspective of a young woman who works for the local curate.

Brooks is a great storyteller.

Meme from Bookgirl.

Bookgirl at Bookgirl’s Nightstand had this meme. I thought I’d requisition it.

* Maybe I should…Quit my job and just read all the time.
* I love the smell of… Books.
* People would say that I… yell a lot.
* I don’t understand why… I have to say things like, “Wash your hands after you play with the rat.”
* When I wake up in the morning… I want to go back to sleep and I usually do.
* I lost my will power to…stop drinking coke.
* Life is wonderful with… my family and some books.
* My past made me… have good rapport with teens.
* I get annoyed when… My routine changes unexpectedly.
* Parties are not… lots of fun.
* Dogs are… generally agreeable.
* Cats… pee on my carpet.
* Tomorrow I am going to… work and sleep.
* I have a low tolerance for… bad drivers.
* I’m totally terrified of… tornadoes
* I wonder why I thought my life would be… lived in Hollywood.
* Never in my life…have I gotten a tattoo.
* High school was something that… I could have done better.
* When I’m nervous… I pace.
* Take my advice…or don’t. I don’t care.
* Making my bed is…unlikely to happen.
* I’m almost always…reading.
* I’m addicted to… books and coke. (The kind in the red can.)
* I want someone…to deal with my yard for me.

I Love Rock and Roll

You’d think this would be another post extolling the virtues of Motley Crue. But it’s not.

My son got the Alvin and the Chipmunks movie for his birthday. In one scene, a chipmunk is playing I Love Rock and Roll on Guitar Hero. My boy decided he really likes this song.

Right now, he is hooked up on the Gamecube version of Karaoke singing “Just put another dime in the juicebox baby.”

Yup. Juice box. I love that kid.

More Letters From Pemberley by Jane Dawkins

More Letters from PemberleyThis picks up where Letters From Pemberley left off. Jane and Elizabeth are married with a child each and live fairly close to each other. In this one, there are more marriages, a broken engagement, a death, and a near death. Not necessarily in that order.

The letters are all written from Elizabeth to Jane, her Aunt, Mr. Darcy, and a few others.

I like these books because they keep very well to Jane Austen’s voice and to period events and possibilities.

Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn

Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters I think Mr. Dunn wrote this book on a dare. That’s what it seems like. How few letters can you use and still get your point across?

There is an island off the coast of South Carolina called Nollop. It is it’s own country named for the man who wrote the sentence “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog” which uses all the letters of the alphabet. When the letters of this sentence begin falling off the statue of Mr. Nollop, the powers that be decide this means Mr. Nollop wants them to stop using those letters. If you break the law 3 times, you’re deported or executed. The story is told in the form of letters between citizens of this country, and as more and more letters jump off the statue, they have to be more and more creative in how they express themselves.

It was a fun read. Especially trying to catch them out in mistakes.

Gods Behaving Badly by Marie Phillips

Gods Behaving Badly: A Novel The major Greek gods are alive and living in London. Unfortunately, no one even knows who they are anymore, and they are losing their power. That doesn’t stop them from being power mad and fighting amongst themselves. Which gets them into a big fix.

April recap.

So it appears that when you have a concussion and a virus, you can do nothing but sleep and read, as evidenced by the following.

Number of books read in April: 17
Number of pages read: 5769 (I know, right?)
Library books: 11
Books I own: 5
Borrowed from Debbie: 1
Fiction: 14
Non fiction: 3
Favorites: The Yiddish Policemen’s Union, Gods Behaving Badly, Year of Wonders, Gentlemen and Players

Problem with wordpress, I guess.

See, normally, I try to mix it up by putting some of the pictures of the books I review on the other side of the page. However, no matter whether I select left or right, it always puts the pictures on the left. So, sorry about the boringness. But at least I’m posting?

Mozart’s Ghost by Julia Cameron

Mozart\'s Ghost: A Novel Right now, you’re thinking to yourself, “Julia Cameron. Julia Cameron. That name sounds vaguely familiar.” And you’re right. She wrote The Artist’s Way that was pretty popular a few years ago.

Me being the unabashed cover slut that I am, I decided to read this one based on the pretty picture and the word “Mozart” in the title. Well, it was OK. The main character was incredibly whiny and spineless. I hate heroines like that. It reminds me of chick lit. What is it with chick lit anyway? All the heroines have to inept, whiny, incompetent, self-absorbed, and/or morally bankrupt? I hate that.

This heroine wasn’t that bad, she was only whiny and spineless. But she’s a medium. That was kind of interesting. The guy who moves in downstairs is a pianist practicing for a huge competition that could launch his career. His constant practicing drives her nuts, and she finds herself being annoyed by an old fashioned ghost with a sense of entitlement. He seems to think he’s all that and a Dr. Pepper. This is, of course, Mozart; and he wants her to tell the pianist what he (Mozart) thinks he should do with his playing to win the competition.

The premise was pretty good. The jacked up relationship with her mother and the equally annoying twin brother thing kind of detracted from the story. And did I mention the annoying main character? Yeah. It was just OK.