Read in February

Ugh! I didn’t love anything I read this month! Okay, Tales of Beedle the Bard was fine, I didn’t hate it. But it was a small wisp of a book. Every single book I finished this month I would have been fine with not finishing. Oh wait. I really liked the How to Hepburn book. But overall, I’m in a disgruntled stage with my reading right now. I think it doesn’t help that I’m currently reading six books right now. Usually I have 2-4 books started, but I read steadily through one, then pick up another. I’m trying Matt’s rotation method (reading bits of many books at once) and I think it doesn’t work for me. Perhaps my March plan will be to finish all the books I have started and focus on no more than three books at a time. Also, if you can recommend me some good fiction books down there in the comments, I would be forever grateful. Just one or two good fiction books you have read recently. Please!

Finished
Life on the Refrigerator Door.
Alice Kuipers
Quick read. You know those notes you scrawl back and forth to the people you live with? The entire book is composed of the equivalent of those. It’s an interesting exercise, but it turns out I missed all the description, etc. Still, even without all of those things the ending was a tear-jerker.

How to Hepburn
Karen Karbo
Karen Karbo appears occasionally in the Oregonian and I enjoy her voice. This was an interesting combination biography and “self-help” book, though it was really more of the former and the latter was a bit tounge-in-cheek. I liked the biographic details of Hepburn’s life, but my favorite part was the commentary by Karbo. Her musings on friendship, women and marriage and women and work were astutely observed. She is funny, too.

Tales of Beedle the Bard
J.K. Rowling
I liked these tales just fine, but learning about the charity the book is supporting was really interesting.

Confinement
Carrie Brown
How could I love one of this author’s books (The Rope Walk) so much and not like any of her others? This started out well: Jewish immigrant and his son from Austria by way of England becomes a driver for a wealthy man in upstate New York. The flashbacks to pre-WWII Austria were interesting at first but the whole pace of the book was a bit plodding to me. I do have to give her props for writing about vastly different characters and settings in each of her novels.

Sunshine
Robin McKinley
This started out great. It seemed to be set in present day, with a brassy main character, happy with her life as a baker in her family’s cafe. Then details crept in and it turns out that was at first felt like present day is set in some parallel universe with “wares” and “suckers” and troubles. Then the main character is kidnapped by Vampires. I was totally into it, excitedly telling people about the book, even people who I know don’t read books. Somewhere near the last quarter, though I lost interest. The story kept going, but lost its edge for me. Alas. Still, better than Twilight. By a lot.

Om Yoga Today: Your yoga practice in 5, 15, 30, 60 & 90 minutes.
Cindi Lee.
I liked the workouts, though I only did the five and fifteen minute versions. The illustrations were sparse, literally stick figures, so I would say this isn’t a book for beginners, but rather people already familiar with the poses. I liked the illustrations, but I would have preferred there also to be some indication of “breathe in” and “breath out.” If I end up buying this book I will add my own symbols. Overall, a good book to have around, I would say.

Started but did not finish
Comedy at the Edge: How stand-up in the 1970s changed America
Richard Zoglin

A good academic study of comedy, which was a bit too academic for me at this point in my life.

American Photobooth
Nakki Goranin
I started to read the essay about the evolution of the photobooth and got distracted and didn’t finish it. But most people will get this book for the photobooth pictures, which were striking.

The James Beard Cookbook
James Beard
Someone recommended this cookbook to me as a nice basic one, so I thought I would investigate the library’s copy. Indeed, it appeared to be a nice basic cookbook.

Telex from Cuba
Rachel Kushner
I wanted to like this novel set in the pre-Castro Cuba. But I just couldn’t get into any of the characters.

Geometry Success in 20 minutes per day
Debbie Y. Thompson
I was feeling blue about my upcoming Praxis exam and so checked out this book to supplement my Geometry learning. I took the quiz at the beginning at got an 84% and felt much better. So I sent the book back without doing the rest of the activities. I did like that the author had a message at the beginning asking people who check the book out from a library not to mark answers in the book. She even helpfully suggested that you mark your answers on a scratch sheet of paper, advice that someone before me ignored.

Mastering the Art of French Cooking
Julia Child
I was thinking of using this to find fun new ways to cook vegetables, but now is not the time for me to find fun new ways to cook vegetables.

Didn’t even start
I started everything. Though a lot of good that did me.

2 thoughts on “Read in February”

  1. Ok fiction – I have been on a reading rampage as of late and all fiction books too so here you go – have you read:

    Girl with a Pearl Earring – it was pretty interesting to me!!

    My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult
    I am actually reading another Jodi Picoult book right now. She is kind of a cookie cutter writer but what I do like about her books is she delves into some science/ethical issues that are relevant and that interest me – especially in My Sister’s Keeper. It was a pretty good book – a little cheesy in parts but when I was finished I did not feel too cheated that I had read it. Unlike – John Grisham’s latest – The Associate that I completely felt robbed in reading when I was finished. Don’t know if that helps or not…

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