Book Reviews by Today, I Read…

A Continuous Book Review and Vocabulary Assignment

July 29

Comments: 12

Review: Stolen by Lucy Christopher

by Ann-Katrina

Stolen Cover

Title: Stolen
Author: Lucy Christopher
ISBN: 978-0-5451-7093-2
Story Length: 304 pages
Genre: Young Adult Drama

Three Quick Points About Stolen

  • Point 1: Slow. No, that’s not right. In fact, a new word needs to be coined because “slow” (and all its various synonyms) is inadequate.
  • Point 2: The camel won. It was the only character that felt genuine. Ty came close, but meh. Let’s not start on Gemma.
  • Point 3: A twisted love story. Still, it was an interesting take on the evolution of Stockholm syndrome. Continue reading »

12 Comments, add yours...

July 18

Comments: 12

[TSS] Is it Ever Possible to Leave the House Without Coming Back with a Truckload of Books?

by Ann-Katrina

Fresh on the heels of finishing both Pharos by Alice Thompson and Stolen by Lucy Christopher (finally!), I discovered another book, Plain Kate by Erin Bow, waiting for me in my mailbox on Saturday and I couldn’t resist starting it.

Pharos by Alice Thompson Pharos was an intriguing read. The best part about the book was the prose. It was evocative, (usually) spare, and eloquent. The story itself wasn’t bad, but I still need to digest it a bit before I try to express my opinions coherently.

Stolen by Lucy Christopher Stolen. Oh, Stolen. What can I say about that book? Well, first I’d say that it’s agonizingly slow in the beginning and although it does pick up somewhat around the later middle and end, it’s still relatively slow throughout. That said, I did like the story. Basically, I kinda wish it was written by someone else. But that one is also digesting so I can write a cogent review.

Plain Kate by Erin Bow I’m about two thirds of the way through Plain Kate and I’m enjoying the journey. There is so much to love about this book so far: it’s a fairytale without gratuitous sugarcoating, there’s talk of witchcraft, there’s a blood-sucking ghost, and the protagonist isn’t handed all of her heart’s desires on a silver platter—she actually has to work for it. That said, I’ve spotted a couple of (minor) problems which I’ll address in the review, but as of now, this one’s a winner. (I’m totally in love with Taggle, Kate’s cat, because he’s just plain hilarious.)

Assuming I finish Plain Kate today (which I’m positive I will), I’ll take in a few short stories or possibly read one of the new books that came home with me today.

And speaking of new books, I’m now of the belief that it’s darn near impossible to leave the house without coming back with a bucket-load of books. This morning while grocery shopping, I noticed that they were having a 75% off sale, so I decided to rummage through the remains and have now added 3 new books (technically 4, but one of them is a craft book) to my library. I’m not really complaining though because they were only a buck apiece.

The Third Option by Vince FlynnThe Wire in the Blood by Val McDermidThe Distant Echo by Val McDermid

I hadn’t realized I’d picked up two books by the same author, but I’m hoping that I really like her style because she’s a new to me author (both of them actually).  Also, I hadn’t realized that The Wire in the Blood is the second book of a series, so I’ll have to scout out the first one before reading it.

If anyone has read Flynn or McDermid or these books specifically, I’d love to hear about your experiences with them.

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May 14

Comments: 9

Book Notes: Stolen by Lucy Christopher

by Ann-Katrina

Stolen by Lucy Christopher For a while I’ve been wanting to read Stolen. I can’t remember where I first learned about it, but I know it was another book blog. I read the description, then went to Amazon and saw it had a few glowing reviews and decided I needed to read it. But, it wasn’t due out in the US for a few months.

By some miracle I received an ARC for the US release (due this month) and started reading it straight away. From the first few pages I had high hopes it would be a smooth read. Right now I’m at the end of page 84 and all I can think is, Man this is a painfully slow read. (It took me hours to get that far.)

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not because the writing or story are bad, but there’s just something about the unfolding of it all that’s stalling my reading. In other words, it’s not holding my attention in the least.

The story so far is about a girl named Gemma who, while is on a layover in Bangkok with her parents, meets and has coffee with a random strange man, and then she wakes up in the middle of nowhere Australia. Basically, she’s kidnapped and is trying to piece together what happened.

Indeed, the subject matter is rather disturbing, but I do love a good psychological study. For whatever reason, though, I’m just not feeling Gemma’s emotional distress. Sure, I can envision what she’s going through, the descriptions are clear and all, but it’s all so scattered it almost feels disingenuous. Maybe someone who’s read the book could clue me into what I’m missing.

I hate to say it, but I need to set this book aside and read something else. (This is the second time I’ve had to do this while reading this book.) There are a few books that have May publication dates, so I’ll probably start on one of those, but I’ll eventually come back to Stolen. I just hope it begins to pick up.

Update July 29, 2010: I’ve finally finished reading the book and have posted my review.

9 Comments, add yours...

April 27

Comments: 1

Teaser Tuesdays: Case of the Purloined Body

by Ann-Katrina

Teaser Tuesdays Happy Tuesday! It’s time again for another edition of Teaser Tuesdays…

Here are the rules:

  • Grab your current read
  • Let the book fall open to a random page
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • You also need to share the title of the book where you get your teaser from…that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given
  • Please avoid spoilers

Stolen This week’s teaser:

“I changed my clothes, finding a baggy T-shirt scrunched in the closet in the hall with the words SAVE THE EARTH, NOT YOURSELVES printed on it. It was loose enough not to hurt the burns too much.” pg. 196 Stolen by Lucy Christopher

When I first heard about this book I was certain I wanted to read it. From the synopsis and some early reviews, I was able to gather that it would be controversial in some way. I enjoy reading controversial novels, especially those that present a conundrum. Stolen does just that. From what I’ve gathered, it touches on the concept of Stockholm syndrome. And after reading the first few pages, it seems like it’s going to be a smooth read.

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