Monday, June 13, 2011

Book Reviews - Issac's Storm, Quilt as Desired, Twenties Girl

http://www.amazon.com/Isaacs-Storm-Deadliest-Hurricane-History/dp/0375708278?ie=UTF8&tag=dalibipi-20&link_code=btl&camp=213689&creative=392969

Isaac's Storm: A Man, a Time, and the Deadliest Hurricane in History by Erik Larson is a non-fiction account of the devastation that occurred during the Galveston hurricane of 1900. The story alternates between Isaac Cline, a meteorologist in Galveston at the time of the hurricane, and other events occurring during the days leading up to, during, and after the hurricane. It is a very well-written and researched book that reads like a fiction novel. This book wasn't actually on my to-read list, however one of Robbie's co-workers loaned it to him and he suggested I read it also. After I started reading it, I realized this is actually the second book I've read by Erick Larson. At the beginning of 2010, I read his book The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America for the January book club meeting. That book was also very well researched (about the 1893 Chicago World's Fair & a serial killer in Chicago at that time) and while it was also non-fiction, it read like fiction. I highly recommend both of these books for anyone who enjoys a good novel and/or would like to learn more about the history of hurricanes or the Chicago World's Fair.

http://www.amazon.com/Quilt-Desired-Harriet-Threads-Mystery/dp/1934135259?ie=UTF8&tag=dalibipi-20&link_code=btl&camp=213689&creative=392969

I purchased this book while browsing the Dallas Quilt Show with the intention of sending it to my sister, but of course I had to read it first. Quilt as Desired is the first in a series of mystery novels by Arlene Sachitano. Harriet Truman has only been back in Foggy Point for a month when her aunt leaves her to run a business, which is broken into twice and her customers' quilts are destroyed. She finds her aunt's best friend shot in the head and there's a large cast of characters who might be involved - members of the Loose Threads quilting group and the dead lady's brother and son. It's a great storyline, however the plot was slow moving at times and the ending wrapped up in three short pages.

http://www.amazon.com/Twenties-Girl-Novel-Sophie-Kinsella/dp/0385342039?ie=UTF8&tag=dalibipi-20&link_code=bil&camp=213689&creative=392969

I read Twenties Girl: A Novel by Sophie Kinsella for this month's book club meeting. It's definitely a light hearted read, but I honestly had a difficult time getting into the story. Lara Lington spends most of the book hanging out with and taking directions from her great-aunt's ghost, trying to find an old necklace that belonged to the great-aunt. There are several story lines - Lara's best friend and new business partner runs out and leaves Lara to run the business by herself, Lara want to re-unite with her boyfriend and gets Sadie's ghost to help her, Lara meets a new man because Sadie's ghost want to go out with him, and Lara's rich uncle has lied for many years about how he started his multi-million dollar business. I think this book would make a hilarious movie, watching Sadie's ghost manipulate people in truly funny scenes, but for me the book was a drudergy to read. It also contained way too much foul language for my taste. Many of the book club members liked it because it was what we call a "fluff" book - easy to read, funny, not too deep.

6 comments:

Karen said...

Our whole book group loved Devil in the White City (it's a group of four couples so when all of us like a book, it's pretty unusual.) I read a great review in the NYTimes Sunday of his newest book which I've now decided to put on my never-ending list of books to read. I've never heard of this one, but it's also looks good.

Rebekah said...

The girls and I just made a library run this afternoon and several books found their way into my arms! I love to stay up late reading in the summer when I don't have to get up first thing the next morning!! Thanks for the reviews on these, those first two sound very interesting!

Sian said...

I always enjoy your reviews - I like the sound of that first one especially.

alexa said...

Your reviews are always so frank and clear - a joy to read!

Stephanie Joanna said...

great reviews Melissa! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Twenties Girl ... I was thinking of picking it up but I think I'll pass. I loved the first few Shopaholic books but I find all of Sophie Kinsella's recent novels have lots foul language. Now that I know Twenties Girl is the same, I'll be skipping it. :)

Ginger said...

Great reviews Melissa! I agree with Sian, the first one sounds good.