Tag Archives: book review

WIJFR: Size 12 Is Not Fat

26 Jan

Size 12 Is Not Fat
Meg Cabot
345 pages

So, I didn’t realize until I was almost done with this book that Meg Cabot is also the author who wrote The Princess Diaries.  I haven’t read those books, but I’ve seen the movies and loved them, so I’m not surprised that I liked this book.  Really liked it.

This was another book I ordered from PBS right after I joined.  I was just browsing through their listings, looking for anything interesting, and stumbled across it.  The description sounded awesome and I agreed with the title: Size 12 is not fact, actually.  I used to be a size 12 once (before I became a size 14) so I should know.  The sequel is called Size 14 Is Not Fat Either, so I just ordered that too, because, you know, size 14 isn’t fat either.

Anydovebar, this book was really good.  You’ve got yourself a washed up pop princess, Heather Wells, who isn’t full of herself, gets a down to earth job in a residence hall, and becomes something of an amateur sleuth when the girls in her residence hall start dying by elevator surfing.  Heather knows girls don’t elevator surf, though, so they must have been murdered.  But by who?  Exactly the kind of mystery I like.  It keeps to you guess, but isn’t too complicated to follow along.

The characters were lovable (except for the murderer, obviously), the setting was pretty awesome, and the plot thickened at just the right points.  The climax of the book was my favorite part.  Cabot didn’t just find a way to end her mystery novel like so many other chick-lit authors do.  There were twists and turns and spanned a few chapters, not a few pages.  It made finishing the book fast and enjoyable.

It’s a few years old, but if you haven’t gotten around to this book yet, I definitely suggest reading this one.

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WIJFR: Pretty Little Liars

24 Jan

Pretty Little Liars
Sara Shepard
286 pages

My to-be-read pile has been growing, so I decided to tackle a book today.  I choose Pretty Little Liars because I thought it would be a fast read (it was, about four hours) and I thought I could get rid of it pretty quickly through PaperBackSwap (PBS) when I’d finished.  It’s posted now and waiting for someone to request it.

I hadn’t heard of this book until I’d seen the commercials for the ABCFamily show based on the novels.  The show didn’t look like anything I’d ever watch, and I still haven’t watched an episode all these months later, but the book description on the PBS website did sound pretty interesting, so I ordered it and it sat around for months until today.

I’m not going to waste much time on an analytical review because the book was pretty fluffy.  Five girls are best friends in seventh grade, they have secrets – some more dramatic than others, one of them “disappears” and three years later the four remaining girls are being harassed through text messages and e-mails by someone who knows all their seventh grade secrets.  The book ends on a cliffhanger because (SPOILER ALERT) even though the fifth friend ends up dead, the messages still keep coming and we don’t know who it is.

I think I would have loved this book back when I was in seventh grade, myself.  Today, however, the book was only okay.  Honestly, I could not get into the characters.  They’ll all rich, self-centered, bitchy, teenage girls who care more about themselves than anyone else.  I don’t really have compassion for characters who shoplift, drink copiously underage, and sleep with their teachers and older sister’s boyfriends.  They must have been so rich that they had no problems and decided to make up some for themselves.  Honestly.

What surprised me when I read the book flap about the author, is that she says she based it on her own upbringing.  I felt sad for her, then, that this was how she was brought up.  Her picture was kind of smirky, too.

I probably won’t read the next book.  I want to know who “A” is, but not enough to actually read the following seven books to find out.  I’ll try Google instead.

WIJFR: The Autobiography of Santa Claus

17 Jan

The Autobiography of Santa Claus
Jeff Guinn
212 pages

In November I picked up a book at Barnes & Noble called The Christmas Chronicles by Jeff Guinn.  It’s an anthology of three books the author has written as though Santa Claus himself were writing.  I thought it would be a nice read with the holidays coming up, unfortunately, I only got halfway through the first novel by the time Christmas came and went and then with the move I didn’t have much time for reading.

Until today, when I decided to put off putting away more clothes by reading for a bit and I finally managed to finish the first novel, which, as I hoped it would be, was a lovely piece of Christmas literature.

Guinn, or rather, Claus, has a unique voice in his writing.  As I was reading it I thought this would be a great short novel to read to children at holiday time.  Guinn obviously did a lot of research in writing the novel.  Santa tells the story of himself starting when he was a young man and goes right through to today.  Along the way he meets lots of fascinating, historical characters who join him in his journey as his life transforms from that of a Bishop to that of the iconic Santa Claus.  Even Attila the Hun joins Nicholas in making toys for needy children!

The novel was very whimsical over all and was a very enjoyable read.  I’m looking forward to reading the other two novels, How Mrs. Claus Saved Christmas and The Great Santa Search, in due time.

WIJFR: One Winter’s Night

17 Nov

So today I had a day off before a few days of long shifts at work and took advantage of it by try to catch up on my reading pile.  What actually happened was that I didn’t catch up on anything I had already started, but started two new books instead.

Whoopsie.

We headed out to Barnes & Noble with our nooks today because there is a coupon in the daily for a free small smoothie if you own a nook.  Score.  So we settled into the Barnes & Noble cafe and I took advantage of their “read in store” option on said nook and started reading Catching Fire, the second book in the Hunger Games trilogy.  So far, it’s a lot better in my opinion than the first book, which was a pleasant surprise.  But I don’t have time to get back there to read for another hour for at least four days.  The wait list on PBS is at least three years, so I may have to break down and order the e-book for myself.

On the way out I picked up three Harlequins because I had a coupon, $1.50 off three.  Sometimes you want to read something fast and easy.  I started tonight with One Winter’s Night, which was fast in easy in both senses of the phrase and surprisingly pleasant.  I was done in three hours and was glad to have spent the evening with this book.

The book is broken up in four short stories that all take place on the night of the office Christmas party.  Four different couples find each other and fall into heavy lust, if not love, too.  I’d never read a Harlequin Blaze until tonight, and I can see why they’re called that; it was definitely steamy.  Because of the way it was broken up, I didn’t feel bogged down with the story as I sometimes can with other Harlequins (as in, OK we get it, they’re attracted to each other and they’re going to agree to get married in the end, so let’s get this over with).

I definitely recommend this one if you’re into Christmas romances.