Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year:2009

Hoping 2009 will be a good year. Happy New Year to you and yours.
Now lets start reading!!! What are a few books that you plan to read this upcoming year??

I am not listing my best of the best books this year. I only started blogging in June.
But my New Year's resolution in blogging is less blog surfing and more reading, if that is possible. Now I am off to start reading my next book on the pile. People of the Book.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Review :Testimony

Anita Shreve

Before I Start my review. I have not read any Anita Shreve books in years.
Weight Of Water was the first book I read by her. I liked it because the book caused me to do research on the historical background.

Her style of writing of Testimony is totally different than Weight of Water. I enjoy books that stay in your head for awhile and full of controversy. This is a book that you want to sit down and discuss with a group of friends at length.

Hence the reason I joined a book club many years ago. There are a few authors that do that with me. The ones that come to my mind

The book would not have the impact it did if it was a straight narrative. The author wrote the book with each person that was involved either directly or indirectly. Their voices in snippets. Until the end of the book you don't figure out the pieces. The puzzle will then fit together.

Testimony is the story about one scandalous reckless act. Four 18 yr. old boys are drunk and and they are caught on camera with a underage 14 yr. old girl having a sexual encounter at a secluded private school in Vermont.

The girl is underage, and very beautiful, flirting and promiscuous. The other part here I don't remember the specific but one of the students said
I did 't realize it was illegal to have sex with a underage girl.

The story is told by different view points from the students, the parents, headmaster, family, friends, and reporters. And those not involved.
It was a mosaic. The pieces of the puzzle did not fit till you were almost finished with the entire book.

The boy may have never done this terrible act if he did not find out that his mother and the head master were having a affair. That is one of the questioned asked. Would Silas have done it regardless. It made you wonder, would he have still went on this drinking binge? That is a good question...

I personally kept thinking I missed something till I figured out that the writer did not want you to know everything till the very end of the book. The point of the story was one reckless act can change the events with a blink of a eye. If a camera was not used it would have been the girl's word against the boys. All the boys were questioned without their parents being at the school. It was a mystery till the end when the story started unraveling and then you could pull the whole puzzle together. You finish the book and then say oh my gosh, now all the pieces make sense. That is what makes a good writer/novelist.

Now that I finished the book. I will go back and re-read some parts of the book.
I did not appreciate the book till the end. It was a grabber at the end, and you could not let go. Even though I predicted what was going happen before. I would recommend this to readers that enjoy books with a social message.

My friend Kathy at Bermudaonion reviewed this book a few months
You can read her review here.. Another bloggers review here article from the Telegraph . And From SF newspaper.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Belated Merry Christmas

I know it's a bit late but I would like to wish all my readers a Merry Christmas.
I hope everyone had a good christmas with their family and loved ones and friends.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Jewish Lit.. Challenge '09

Here is my post on the Jewish Literature Challenge. I am not posting extensively because it is already on my other blog, Jewish Rantings.

Masterpiece Theater

Masterpiece Theater new upcoming schedule will be showing Charles Dickens in '09.
but first Tess, and Wuthering Heights both book classics in early January, a encore of Jane Austen during the season as well for those of us that were unable to catch it last year. On PBS website
How to start a book/movie discussion group is on the site. If you miss it on television, you can catch it online for a limited time. Check out masterpiece's schedule here. Here is the PBS'site how to start a discussion,and the classic show's of the season here. Just wanted to share to let my reader's know what will be showing this year on masterpiece.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Boy In The Striped ajamas

If you are interested in my thought of the movie read my review on my other blog
Jewish Rantings. If you are interested you may visit the website for the movie here.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

I've Been Tagged!!

I have been awarded my first award from Marie, of Boston Biliophile. and tagged for a meme. I have never been asked to do one. This is my first go at it. I am sorry it is so late. But I had a paper for school that takes precedence. Even over books I am sorry to say. Who would ever believe I would say that.

Find the closest book to you and turn to pg. 56, find the 5th sentence and 2-5 mores sentences beyond that. The book closest to me is The Road by Cormac McCarthy.
The sentence reads: We've been all over this. I didn't bring myself to this. I was brought. And now I'm done. I thought about not telling you. That probably would have been best. You have two bullets and then what.

Now tag 5 blogging friends:
Bermuda Onion
Book Club GirlBooks
Dar, at Peeking Through the Pages
and Red lady's Reading Room
Lisa, at Books On the Brain

Now go to my other blog over at Jewish Ranting and I posted my meme there as well.
Happy Thanksgiving to all my readers and blogger friends. Don't over stuff!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Follow Up On Paper

Well I came to class all right and handed in the paper. You only hear about these things in movies. I get to the library to brush up the paper. I print it up.
Well the paper is not centered right. Oh, My G-D I panic... What do I do now!!
The nice college librarian offered to help me she did not realize what she was getting in too. She thought all she had to do is center the page. But she finally said to me" didn't any one ever explain to you; that you are not to press the enter button at the end of every sentence". I gulped, and then sweat went down my back. I said No. She was so nice. She fixed my whole paper 7 pgs. long and still the bibliography had to be fixed. Then we find out that the printer is not printing out. I have 15 minutes to have it printed and get to class. I am so bad at saving on a jump drive. I was so nervous I hoped to g-d that I saved it right on the jump drive. You see the librarian told me that if I saved it on the drive she could print it on one of the other printers... Well it got done 5 minutes to spare. I never want to ever go through this again. Next semester I am taking computer 101, and keyboarding. Hopefully I will learn all the techniques to be able learn all the things I thought I learned but I did not get. Thank Goodness there are nice people in this world.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I Funally Finished It!!

I finally finished my history psper. It is not so much the paper but the technical things with the computer that I found difficult. I knew about the paper since I started class. I went to get help with how to put the jump drive in. Finally figured that out but could not figure out how to a foot note, and a citation page. Still not sure if I did it right. When I got most of the paper done I decided I was going to get extra help on certain points. When I put in my flash drive, my document becomes corrupted. Well you guess it I had to write the paper all over again. Thank goodness, I did not have to go to work or I would be in a jam. I hate it doing things at the last minute. I would have rather had this done a week ago. That way I would not have to worry about the technical support. Well anyway the paper is done and I hope and pray that the jump drive was able to save everything that I can print it at school. My paper is a argumentative paper.

Did Women Make A Difference During The French Revolution.
Here is a great picture of Liberty which I am using on my cover sheet doesn't she look great.I know this is my blog about books, but allow me one time to write about personal stuff. Anyway the paper does deal about books. If any one ever needs help
with this topic I know where great resources are, or if you want to know for your own personal reasons I think I may just post it some where on my blog. Now that I am finished I will analyze all my info. and post what I learned about Women and the French Revolution. I found this a very interesting topic. I am loving history so much like never before. I was never interested in WW1, imperalism. When I was getting to the topic I thought it would be quite boring. But surprise it was interesting, most European countries history is a soap opera. Everyone is suspicious of everyone and the alliances my g-d who can keep this straight. Quite interesting.
If you are interested what I have to say about history look for my next post.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Dianna Spechler Interview

Diana Spechler is the author of the novel Who By Fire (Harper Perennial.) Her fiction has appeared in such publications as Glimmer Train, Greensboro Review, and Moment. She has taught at the University of Montana and the Interlochen Center for the Arts. She holds a BA from the University of Colorado and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Montana.

It catches you right from the start and grabs you and doesn't let go.
I don't call this a Jewish book. But it is written of course by a Jewish author.
The book deals with issues that could and probably has happened to many families that are Jewish or not.
Family problems, the mother, sister, and brother don't know how to communicate with one another and guilt, and guilt, and guilt, and there is plenty of that to go around.
That is what Jews are famous for. They all deal with the crisis differently. The book does deal with the Intifada, and the brother running off to Israel and becomes a B'al Teshuva( religious Jew), and cuts himself off from his family. I just loved the characters, How each family member deals with their sister's disapearance and their father leaving the family. It was a very good read.
I have been waiting for a novel by a author to touch and talk about the situation in Israel. I thought it was interesting how Diana made the narrative into alternate voices through out the book instead of a straight narrative. I think it was quite effective. I don't think the book would have had the impact it did on me if it was a straight narrative.

I would like to thank Diana for stopping by and chatting with me during her busy book tour. This happens to be Jewish Book Month, when we find out what Jewish Books are flying off the shelves.

How did you come to write Who By Fire? Were there events in your life that led you to write it?

When I was a grad student, I wrote a short story about two of the protagonists, Bits and Ash, who are brother and sister. Bits lives in Boston and Ash lives in Jerusalem, learning at a yeshiva. At the beginning of the story, Bits learns of a suicide bombing in Jerusalem and wants to know if Ash is okay. She keeps calling him, but he never responds. The story, which I titled Close To Lebanon, ends without resolution. A few months after I finished Close To Lebanon, it was the tense plot and the fictional family, rather than my own family or events from my own life, that wound up haunting me enough to expand the story into a novel.

Do you consider yourself a Jewish writer?
I am Jewish and I am a writer, but not everything I write is about Judaism. At the moment, people refer to me as a Jewish writer because of the themes and the setting of Who By Fire. Truly, that’s an honor. There are so many amazing Jewish writers.

What makes a Jewish novel?

I think that classification is somewhat subjective. If I write a novel that has nothing to do with Judaism, it will still be a Jewish novel, because Judaism is transmitted through the mother, and I am, after all a woman. (Yes, I’m joking. Kind of.)

Did you always want to be a writer?

Yup. I was writing stories as soon as I could pick up a pen. My mother has a twenty-four page story I wrote when I was seven years old. It’s called Shana and The Magic Quilt. It is a masterpiece.

Is there a certain Jewish author you look up to?
I love a lot of Jewish authors. Two of my favorite Jewish novels are The Ladies’ Auxiliary by Tova Mirvis and The History of Love by Nicole Krauss.

Is there a secular author you look up to?

Only about a million of them. Jeffrey Eugenides is one of my favorites because of his novel Middlesex.

Was there an author, Jewish or not, who advised you along the way? Did you take his or her advice?

When I was a graduate student, I got a lot of great advice from my teachers, who were, of course, writers themselves. I remember the author Colum McCann visiting my MFA program and talking about pushing through writer’s block. He said that if you’re writing a story and it gets out of control, it’s up to you to wrestle it into submission. After all, you created it. That’s pretty empowering advice.

For my non-Jewish readers, can you talk about your experience with yeshivas?

When I was researching yeshiva life, I contacted a lot of men’s yeshivas in Jerusalem. I told them I was coming to do research for a novel and I was hoping to take a tour and ask some questions. Most declined or didn’t respond, which is understandable. For one thing, yeshivas are a place for men to learn about Judaism. They didn’t need a woman staring at them and writing about them in a notebook. For another thing, some were worried that I was writing about Orthodox Judaism to make fun of it. Of course, I wasn’t, but I had trouble convincing most people of that. A couple of yeshivas did let me in, which helped me to better imagine yeshiva life and make Ash’s chapters (which are set in a yeshiva in Jerusalem) more authentic.

Were you able to draw on your own knowledge of Judaism, or did you have to do research?

I did a lot of research. Of course, from growing up Jewish, I knew some things, but while I was working on Who By Fire, I did a lot of reading and I asked a lot of questions. I made frequent use of the website

Since your brother has become a B'al Teshuvah, has your relationship with him changed?

My relationship with my brother never changed. We’ve always been very close. He’s the best.

What is it like to be in Israel as an American?

I certainly can’t speak for all Americans, but I’ve had fabulous experiences in Israel. Once, in college, I spent a whole semester there, studying at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. (I use the word “studying” loosely.) Those months were some of the best of my life.

Are you surprised by how many non-Jewish readers are reading Who By Fire?

I’m not surprised. The novel is set partly in Israel and the characters are Jews, but the themes are universal. It’s a story about guilt and rescue. Those are not exclusively Jewish concepts.

What kind of responses, favorable or otherwise, are you getting to the book?

So far, the reviewers have been very kind. (Should I knock on wood now?)

Why the title, Who By Fire?

A lot of people ask me if the title comes from the Leonard Cohen song, but in fact, Leonard Cohen and I seem to have had the same inspiration: the Yom Kippur prayer that lists the ways one might die in the coming year if he hasn’t made it into the Book of Life.

Is there something you want readers to get out of this book?

Of all the reactions I get to the book, the two most gratifying are, “I couldn’t put it down,” and “I’ve never been to Israel, but after reading your book, I want to go.” I hope more readers will pay me those two compliments!

Are the events in the novel autobiographical or did you make them up?

I made them up. That’s the fun part of writing fiction. I write some non-fiction, too, but I always prefer imagining people who aren’t real doing things that I would never do.

Is there a message in the book?

I hope there are subliminal messages on every page, seeping into the reader’s unconscious, encouraging them to send me presents. Other than that, no, I don’t think there’s a message.

Are you observant or secular?

I’m pretty secular at this point in my life, but I’m open. I’m interested in every type of observance and every type of non-observance. Judaism fascinates me. Religion in general fascinates me. It’s all beautiful. Even Jews who ignore Judaism have beautiful stories to tell about their reasons for living how they live.

What kind of reaction have you had from observant Jews?
I was so worried that even after all my research, my depiction of yeshiva life would sound inauthentic. I haven’t heard that yet, though. The feedback has all been pretty positive, from observant Jews, secular Jews, and non-Jews.

Has your family read the book? What was their response?
They loved it! After all, it’s dedicated to them.

Are you writing now?
It’s hard to write while I’m on book tour, but the novel I have in the works is a story of transformation through loss set at a weight-loss camp for children in North Carolina. I’m not sure yet about a title for it; it’s still in its infancy.

I am reading the book and loving it. The family around which the book is centered happens to be Jewish, but it’s a story that could happen to any family. Do you agree or disagree?
I definitely agree. Family dysfunction does not discriminate based on race, color, creed, religion, etc.

Thank you for stopping by!! Good luck on your new book Who By Fire.
Can't wait to read the next one. If you would like to contact Diana and let her know what you thought of the book you can visit her website. Also visit book blog talk radio on November 20th where book club girl is hosting her monthly author radio program.
I would also like to thank Book Club Girl for all her help.
Thank You So Much You Are The BEST!!!

We Interupt This Broadcast

I just finished this book, "We Interupt This Broadcast."
This is a great book for holiday giving for friends and family that are history buffs,and current events. While you are reading the book you can also listen to the broadcast. Do you remember when....Do you remmeber what you were doing when you heard the news of Princess Diana's death, Elvis when he died, when the man walked the moon.
Where you were when you heard Pres. Kennedy was shot?? Do you remember the day of 9/11 where were you? All the current events of the day made history. It is ingrained in our memory. The power of pictures bring back powerful emotions, of sadness, it will remind you of what you were feeling and smelling and doing during the broadcast. At least it did for me.
That was the aim of the author, when he explains why he added the CD to the book.
You will relive those moments in history.
rekindles your emotions and stirs them.
I can still remember the procession of Pres. Kennedy going up and down the street in Washington, D.C. I was a little girl. I remember how sad and overwhelmed I was even as a child. The horrible events of 9/11, when my mother came home from the doctor and told me. I remember that day like it was yesterday when you look at the pictures,and hear the CD you will recall the day, fleeting memories will come back vividly. I can't say enjoyed, but I did like flipping through the pages of this book. Reading the different events in history. It goes from the Hindenburg explosion to The Virginia Tech. incident. Including a foreward by Walter Cronkite, and introduction by Joe Garner and the CD by Bill Kurtis.

We Interupt The Broadcast
Where Were You When…?

Table of Contents
Foreword by Walter Cronkite
The Hindenburg Explodes: May 6, 1937
Pearl Harbor Under Attack: December 7, 1941
D-Day: The Normandy Invasion: June 6, 1944
President Roosevelt Dies: April 12, 1945
V-E Day: War in Europe Ends: May 7, 1945
Atomic Bomb Destroys Hiroshima: August 6, 1945
Japan Surrenders: WWII Ends: August 15, 1945
Truman Defeats Dewey: November 3, 1948
General MacArthur Fired: April 11, 1951
Sputnik Launched by Soviets: October 4, 1957
John Glenn Orbits Earth: February 20, 1962
Marilyn Monroe Dies: August 4, 1962
Cuban Missile Crisis: Nuclear War Threatened: October 22, 1962
President Kennedy Assassinated: November 22, 1963
Lee Harvey Oswald Assassinated: November 24, 1963
President Johnson Declines Re-election Bid: March 31, 1968
Martin Luther King Jr. Assassinated: April 4, 1968
Robert Kennedy Assassinated: June 4, 1968
Apollo 11: Man Walks on Moon: July 20, 1969
Apollo 13: Astronauts Escape Disaster: April 13, 1970
Kent State Massacre: May 4, 1970
Munich Olympics Tragedy: September 5, 1972
Nixon Resigns: August 8, 1974
Saigon Falls: April 30, 1975
Elvis Dies: August 16, 1977
Iran Hostage Crisis: November 4, 1979
John Lennon Assassinated: December 8, 1980
President Reagan Shot: March 30, 1981
The Challenger Explodes: January 28, 1986
Berlin Wall Crumbles: November 9, 1989
Operation Desert Storm Begins: January 29, 1991
Rodney King Verdict Incites Riots: April 29, 1992
Waco Standoff Ends in Disaster: April 19, 1993
O.J. Simpson Saga: June 13, 1994 - February 4, 1997
Oklahoma City Bombing: April 19, 1995
Flight 800 Explodes Over Atlantic: July 17, 1996
Atlanta Olympics Bombing: July 27, 1996
Princess Diana Dies: August 31, 1997
The Impeachment of President Clinton: December 19, 1998
Tragedy at Columbine High School: April 20, 1999
John F. Kennedy Jr. Dies: July 16, 1999
The 2000 Election: November 7, 2000
Attack on America: September 11, 2001
Virginia Tech Massacre April 16, 2007

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I Got It ! I Got It !

I have been waiting for this one for over a month.
I can't believe I finally got my grubby hands on the book.
I finally received the ARC in the mail the other day. I am so excited.
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You.
I know it sounds strange that I am jumping for joy over a book. But it has been over two longs months that I have not read a good book. Thank You, Miriam at Hatchette Books.
Thank you. I can't wait to start reading this one.
This caught my eye. I love the graphics.
The book is called The Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker.
Check out the author's website. I can't wait to start reading this one.

This book reminds me of James and the Giant Peach. It sounds a little strange and off beat. But I can't wait to read it.
Here is a link to Corrine review.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Giveaway Is Closed

Shalom Y'All as we say in South Carolina.

I regret to post this, as I had a great response to my book giveaway. But any of my readers and fellow bloggers that responded after the 5th of November. I regret to let you know that I will have to turn you away. I feel bad but the date stated specifically November 5th. Anyone after the 5th will not be in the drawing. I will be drawing in the next couple days.
I was trying to promote my blog but it turns out I found out about your blogs too. Which I will be visiting and putting on my blog roll, and visiting.
Thank you for stopping by and come back now that you know where I am.
I had made some blogs friends here too, that I hope will be everlasting. I would like to thank everyone who helped with promoting my blog. I had a great response which I was not expecting. I would like to let you all know that Diana Spechler will be having a guest post here soon, check back often.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Michael Crichton Passes at 66

I can't believe it Michael Crichton has passed away at the age of 66 from Cancer. I had to do a double take to make sure I read the article from Bookish Ruth's blog right. I am heart broken. I remember seeing Jurassic Park with my son at age 4. All the parents were in a uproar not allowing their child to see it because they thought it was too violent. I ended up taking David despite what everyone was saying, and he turned out fine. He is in college now. I read a few of his other books I think one was called Sphere. I loved ER, he was either the creator or the writer. I would like at this time to pray for him and his family and hope he did not suffer.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Hi fellow bloggers and readers, I wanted to let you know about a new concept that is being launched. I have been contacted by CBS, they are promoted a new concept at The show is, Novel Adventures. It can only be viewed on the internet. It is about four women that join a book club and their zany adventures. You can view the press release below. I wouldn't normally promote this, but because it is about a book club. Well, anyone who know me knows what I would do next...... they use the internet to promote their products. This one is Saturn. The TV producers use to do this for old radio and TV shows.
It will be interesting to see what happens. If this concept takes off or stays idle. Well here is a preview from

CBS Interactive announced today a partnership with Saturn to launch its new original scripted Web series "Novel Adventures" from creator Jonathan Prince ("The Cleaner"), who has a first look deal with CBS Interactive’s sister division, CBS Paramount Network Television. The eight-Webisode series will premiere on November 3 exclusively on,, and and stars Daphne Zuniga ("One Tree Hill"), Paola Turbay ("Cane"), Ashley Williams ("How I Met Your Mother") and Jolie Jenkins ("Desperate Housewives").

Each episode will be presented exclusively for a 48-hour window on, and and then roll out across the CBS Audience Network as well as be available on iTunes. Two new Webisodes will be released per week for the first two weeks, followed by a single new Webisode a week for the remainder of the series. NOVEL ADVENTURES will be promoted across CBS Interactive platforms and in prime time on the CBS Television Network.

Set in various locations throughout Los Angeles and shot in high-definition, NOVEL ADVENTURES is the story of four women from different backgrounds and at different stages in their lives who join a Book Club in hopes of escaping the obstacles presented by everyday life. They come together through their shared passion for books at a weekly book club, but quickly realize what they are really looking for is adventure. And so, inspired by a different book each week, the four embark on a variety of adventures that help them fulfill their lives while taking them to a new and exciting place each week.
Following is a list of the eight Webisodes in order of appearance:

• The Sand and Sea Club: To honor Hemingway’s classic tale The Old Man in the Sea, the girls head out for an afternoon of deep-sea fishing and end up with a surf lesson from a male model from Malibu.
• The Fab Four: Sheila Weller’s Ladies of the Canyon (Joni Mitchell, Carly Simon, and Carole King) brings the groupie out in the girls who are determined to live out the life of rock legends.
• Spy Girls: The Bourne Trilogy by Robert Ludlum leads the ladies to Spy School.
• Whodunnit? We dunnit: The Monster of Florence by Douglas Preston is the backdrop for the girl’s chance to find out how to solve mysteries, CSI-style.
• If You Can’t Take the Heat: This adventure is inspired by writer Kathleen Flinn’s book titled The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry. Based on her adventures at Le Cordon Bleu, it leaves the girls starving for an epicurean adventure.
• The Prince and the Perfect Taco: With mixtures of inspiration from Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind and Knit Two by Kate Jacobs, the sequel to her bestselling book, Friday Night Knitting Club, the girls search for the urban myths of a gypsy taco truck and the perfect man.
• Bare Essentials: Betty Friedan’s autobiography titled Life So Far leads the girls to find their own power, ironically, thru pole dancing classes.
• But You’ve Got to Have Friends: The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows helps the ladies cap off their book club with a final look at their past experiences and opening the door to more adventures in the future.


DAPHNE ZUNIGA AS LAURA, a recently divorced mother of a teenage son, who having found herself in a rut, looks to shake things up with her new friends.

PAOLA TURBAY AS JOANNA, a single, successful entertainment attorney who must balance the expectations of her career and her mother who just wants her to get married.

ASHLEY WILLIAMS AS LIZZIE, a recently married young woman struggling to cope with life in a new city, a work-a-holic husband, and too much time on her hands.

JOLIE JENKINS AS AMY, a happily married woman who runs a high-end bakery, but is still missing something – a baby -- in her seemingly perfect life.

In addition to watching the series online, viewers are invited to participate in the adventures by visiting, where they will find bonus content as well as blogs and vlogs organized by character, Webisode and book. A variety of community tools are also available, including:

• Commenting, Rating, & Reviews – Fans can post comments and rate each Webisode, as well as rate and review the books the women read and their adventures
• Suggest a Book – Viewers can submit suggestions for books to be covered in future Webisodes
• Quizzes- A variety of quizzes are available about the books, activities and Webisodes
• Discussion Boards - Forums for discussing the books or authors featured on the show, including chats with the actual authors
• Fan Favorites – Viewers can become a fan of a book and/or author, get reviews, join discussions, and more

Book Giveaway

There is a giveaway for A Given Day by Dennis Lehane. I have been wanting to read this for awhile. It intrigues me about the early 20th Century Boston and two Irish families. This is part of the Carnival Giveaway. Here is the author's website with some valuable resources.

Bookroomreview is having a book giveaway carnival this week. There are plenty of giveaways in store this week. Visit her blog to see the many prizes are being given away by other book bloggers.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I Am So Envious

Boy! Look At All Those Books, Now Talk About Paradise

I wish I was able to go to San Jose, California. Chapter three,Book Club Expo was held for the third year. BOOK CLUB PARADISE!!! I kid you not. Every year for the past three years. Book Clubbers, and book lovers, and authors collide for a great weekend of fun, book salons.
The first year when it was advertised, it was a small get together. But it seems to have bloomed since last year's Expo. There were many authors I would have loved to hear, and talk about their books. I would have liked the opportunity to meet Jennifer Hart from Harper Collins.
I understand she was unable to be there because she is pregnant. That would have been the only reason that would have stopped me too. This would have been a great way to meet other bloggers, book clubbers,The founder of, Carol Fitzgerald,and, and others. There are just too many too mention. Maybe someday. A bibliophile can dream can't she.
This is very different from the book festivals for example the one in NYC, and Miami. But this totally different, The salons, talk about different topics dealing with book clubs only. This is like a Book Club Convention. Well the closest to being there,at the Expo is they will have it on line soon. They air every year after the event. I reccommend for anyone to go if you live in the area. It sounds like a good ole time. If any one was able to go, if you like live me a comment on your experience there. I would love to hear about it from the prospective as a book clubber.

Life After Genius

The next blog tour, hosted by Miriam of Hatchette books is Life After Genius.
Here is the synopsis of the book provided by Mariam.
Theodore Mead Fegley has always been the smartest person he knows. By age 12, he was in high school, and by 15 he was attending a top-ranking university. And now, at the tender age of 18, he's on the verge of proving the Riemann Hypothesis, a mathematical equation that has mystified academics for almost 150 years. But only days before graduation, Mead suddenly packs his bags and flees home to rural Illinois. What has caused him to flee remains a mystery to all but Mead and a classmate whose quest for success has turned into a dangerous obession.

At home, Mead finds little solace. His past ghosts haunt him; his parents don't understand the agony his genius has caused him, nor his desire to be a normal kid, and his dreams seem crushed forever. He embarks on a new life's journey -- learning the family business of selling furniture and embalming the dead--that disappoints and surprises all who knew him as "the young Fegley genius."

Equal parts academic thriller and poignant coming-of-age story, LIFE AFTER GENIUS follows the remarkable journey of a young man who must discover that the heart may know what the head hasn't yet learned."
Follow on the tour the next stop is
I loved this book. It was very easy to draw you right in from the start. The writing
was not a beach read but it was not too wordy either.
I am writing a shorter review since I am in the middle of midterms.
Hopefully I will get back to it and revise it soon.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

My First Challenge

I am doing my first reading challenge. I don't think it will be too difficult. You have to read four books for the Jewish challenge from December to April 2009. Can't wait to start.

Monday, October 27, 2008

My First Book Giveaway

I am hosting a giveaway in conjunction with Book Club Girl's blog talk radio. The guest will be Diana Spechler, the author of Who By Fire. I will be giving away 10 copies of the book. The contest begins today and will end November 5th. That gives you enough time to read the book in preparation for blog talk radio. If you blog about my giveaway on your blog and link to my blog, Jewish rantimgs, and comment you will have three entries. But you must go to Jewish Rantings. There is a link
Visit, my blog friend Jennifer, book club girl here for information of the book Who By Fire, and information on the blog talk radio show with Diana Spechler.
The Synopsis of the book is taken from Harper Collins Website.
Bits and Ash were children when the kidnapping of their younger sister, Alena—an incident for which Ash blames himself—caused an irreparable family rift. Thirteen years later, Ash is living as an Orthodox Jew in Israel, cutting himself off from his mother, Ellie, and his wild-child sister, Bits. But soon he may have to face them again; Alena's remains have finally been uncovered. Now Bits is traveling across the world in a bold and desperate attempt to bring her brother home and salvage what's left of their family.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Hotel of Bitter and Sweet

I am so excited I just recieved The Hotel of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford yesterday. The publication date is not till January.
I have heard other bloggers rave about this book. I can't wait to dig into it.
But right now I have to read Matrimony for my book club.
Thank you Jamie, for the copy. I am looking forward to reading this one very soon.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sara's Key

Sara's Key just went on sale in soft cover. I have been wanting to read this book for quite awhile.
Booking Mama is having a book giveaway for this book.
I just received a copy in the mail from the publisher. This will be a good one to read for the Jewish Book Challenge.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination

The Exact Replica of My Imagination by Elizabeth McCracken.
This is one of my favorite authors. I read her previous book,Giant House.
I had wondered why I have not seen her work in a few years. The memoir explains.
From the the flap of the book:

A prizewinning successful novelist in her 30's. Elizabeth McCracken was happy to be a itinerant writer and self proclaimed spinster. Then she fell in love, got married, and continued her life of writting, traveling, and teaching with her husband. Two years ago she found herself in a remote
part of France, waiting for the birth of her first child.
This book is what happens next, in the next 9 months her pregnancy, a baby is lost.
Just over a year later, a baby is born. In a profoundly moving display of humor, heart,
and unfailing generosity. McCracken tells account t her story.
It is a story of true love and unfathomable sadness. It is a story of true of couragous recovery and bittersweet moments, of steadfast memories and deep affection. It is a story of the importance of friendship. It is a story of happiness and hope.

Anyone who has ever experienced loss, or loves someone who has, will hope to go on with with the company of the remarkable book.
I am not giving you my whole review. But I will give you sentence or two.
I would not have picked up this book if it was not for the book blog tour that is being offered
by Mariam from Hatchett books
I thought I would have to force myself to read this book. But I was wrong. It drew me in from the start. She writes as though she is talking to you at the kitchen table having coffee.
This book is a memoir about her first child that was still born and, another born a year later born healthy.
Elizabeth writes about the loss of her first child. She writes why she has decided to write the book.
And now I am thinking about that Florida lady again, the one who wanted a book about the lighter side of a child's death, and I know:all she wanted was permission to remember her child with pleasure instead of grief.
The book was bitter sweet. The book was not intensely sad which I was surprised.
It was to read, almost at the same breath she talks about the loss of her firs t child and preparing for the birth, and happiness of her second child, Gus. You would expect her to be sad. But she pulls herself from the boot straps and goes on. It must have been very hard to go into labor know your child will not come out of the birth canal alive. I just can't imagine.

But this book is not just about how to deal with loss of a child, but of any loss. It made all of us, who read this book. Should we say how sorry we are, or not say anything. The author wanted her friends to acknowledge the loss of her child. One of her friends did not contact her for months. Elizabeth could not accept this. She has not spoken to her since. This made me realize no mater how hard it is, at least acknowledge the sorrow and death. We need to talk to that person no matter how hard it is. I don't know anyone that has lost a child but I can relate this to anyone that has lost someone.
Here is a review at The New York Times
To coincide with the book tour I will be having my first contest. The giveaway is The Exact Replica of a Figment of my Imagination. Just leave a comment by Monday and I will have the drawing on Tuesday at 11:59 PM. To get two chances write about this contest on your blog.
Enjoy reading a chapter excerpt HERE!
Or an audio excerpt HERE!
Get to know Elizabeth better on Facebook HERE!
Your next stop will be Allison

This is the list of sites participating in th book blogging tour

Megan of
Tricia of
Corinne of
Antonette of
Swapna of
Luanne of
Carrie of
Allison of
Bethany of
Marie of
The Kool Aid Mom of
Nicole of

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My First Challenge

This is my first challenge hosted by Alphaheroes
Blog hopping.
The challenge is a off shoot from myfriendamy's BBAW
I would love to meet new bloggers that I have not met before.
Look below and you will find the challenge rules.

Starting here, find a linked blog that you’ve never been to before. It does not have to be book-related. If none of the links in my sidebar are new to you, hit the BBAW list and start there.
Go to the blog you’ve chosen and browse through the posts until you find something you find interesting. Leave a comment. Mention where you found the link. Mention of this challenge is optional.
Using the links in THAT blog, repeat. If you find yourself somewhere that does not have any new-to-you links, go back to the BBAW list. Be sure to leave a comment in each location, mentioning where you found their site linked.
Repeat until you have visited 10 new blogs.
Write a post on your blog showing your bloghopping trail. Content is up to you; you can highlight your favorites, critique the sites, or just post the list of 10. I recommend you open up a word document (or whatever you use) and list out the urls as you go. It's really REALLY easy to get distracted doing this and lose track of where you were.
I’d love it if you link back to this post.
Optional: add your favorites to your own sidebar, or temporarily put up a blogroll widget with the 10 sites you visited.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Other Queen

Today's giveaway is from You may have a chance to win The Other Queen, plus ten Book Club Girl mouse pads. In The Other Queen, Gregory tells the story of Mary, Queen of Scots, who trusted Queen Elizabeth's promise of sanctuary only to find herself imprisoned as the "guest" of the Earl of Shrewsbury and his indomitable wife. As the seeds of intrigue and rebellion against Elizabeth are sown far north of London, her hosts find themselves in the precarious position of potentially aiding and abetting the plot against Elizabeth while Mary is struggling for her very life. All you need to do is to leave a comment on , which Phillipa Gregory book is your favorite.
I hate to admit I have never read Phillippa Gregory, or any historical fiction about this time period. I thought she was a romance writer. I later found out she isn't. I have read other historical fiction( bilbical fiction) and I find that the authors write one dimensional. I judged it on that. What a terrible mistake. I was wrong after seeing the movie. Another author, Allison Weir, has tried her hand in historical fiction. Her second book is out about Queen Elizabeth.
She has written biographies on King Henry viiii, Queen Elizabeth, Anne Boleyn.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Book Club Girl is having another contest.
She is asking if you visit her blog to post a comment on
What book, made the place the character. The winners will get a mouse pad and copy of a new book called Nothing is Quite Forgotten in Brooklyn by Alice Mattison.
For me, there are a few books that do that for me. I will name a few.
One Thousand Splendid Suns, really gave you the feel of the culture and the people.
How women were treated by their husbands, and all men in Afghanistan.
The other was To Kill A Mockingbird, the character was Alabama. The sense of the towns culture in the 30's, 40's, 50's, and even early 60's.


Monday, September 15, 2008

My Friend Amy: Welcome to Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2008!

My Friend Amy: Welcome to Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2008!

How I Started, And My Favorite Blogs

I just started blogging since June. I have two blogs one was suppose to be for my book club.
But, unfortunately none of my members were interested. I decided I wanted others from the book blogging community to communicate with. I have not gotten much response. But, I just have to keep on trying. The one blogger that has helped me alot is bookclubgirl. There are some bloggers who I have left comments and are great. There are others who ignore me.
The other blog is Every Day I Write The Book, and recently Bermuda Onion. But, the one who was my inspiration is book club girl. She has helped me. She is trying to help me promote my other blog.
if no one is aware is another source to find other bloggers. Tricia, is the one who started it. The bloggers on are the inspiration not to give up. They are all welcoming. I have a technical question, no matter how stupid. They help.
book has really been my inspiration and told me never to give up. It is a social book blog network.
They are great. But, I have only recently started, give me a few more months and maybe I will add a few. I wish there was a contest to visit a blog you never visited before. That one would have been a great idea.


Here is a contest that can't be beat. Bethany at B&B exlibres is having a drawing for the book Matrimony. The drawing will be on September 22nd. This a great time for this drawing.
Because of Book Appreciation Week. He has nice things to say.
You can read what he has to say about book clubs. He has visited other blogs recently talking about book clubs.
You want to talk about dedicated you must read what his daughter and him were talking about
when it deals with book clubs. I would check it out. Then Bethany added more comments on
Matrimony. I would check that out again here. This post was written in June. This also has a nice video and lots of links to other blogger's reviews.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Up Coming Book Club

Our next book club meeting will be in October.
We will be reading Keeping the House by Ellen Baker.
This looks like a fun book by the looks of the cover.
My members will kill me because if they knew why I picked it, they will think I am crazy.
I literally judged the book by it cover. Maybe I should skip town till after all of them read the book or hide under a rock.
I will then be able to breathe a sigh of relief, especially by one of my members. I promised her this is a good book.
There are some book club members who don't like to do anything different. They just like to read and discuss the book.
I usually like to stir things up a bit. Have a conference call with the author. Lunch out with the girls have some connection with the book. Well this time I am doomed untill I hear from one of the most judgemental people in my club. Than I will feel better. I just hope the author is not reading this. This may scare her away. Our book club won a contest with the author with a conference call and she is shipping us her cookies from the book.
You can visit her website here, and you can find Ellen's recipe for the cookies here

Keeping the House

*A Booksense Notable Pick*

When Dolly Magnuson moves to Pine Rapids, Wisconsin in 1950, she discovers all too soon that making marriage work is harder than it looks in the pages of the Ladies’ Home Journal. Dolly tries to adapt to her new life—keeping the house, supporting her husband’s career, fretting about dinner menus. She even gives up her dream of flying an airplane, and instead tries to fit in at the stuffy Ladies Aid quilting circle. Soon, though, her loneliness and restless imagination are seized by the vacant house on the hill, and, as Dolly’s own life and marriage become increasingly difficult, she begins to lose herself in piecing together the shocking story of three generations of Mickelson men and women: Wilma Mickelson, who came to Pine Rapids as a new bride in 1896, and fell in love with a man who was not her husband; her oldest son, Jack, who fought as a Marine in the trenches of the First World War; and Jack’s son, JJ, a troubled veteran of World War II, who returns home to discover Dolly in his grandparents’ house. As the crisis in Dolly’s marriage escalates and she seeks answers from JJ’s stories of his family’s past, KEEPING THE HOUSE moves back and forth in time, exploring themes of wartime heroism and passionate love, of the struggles of men with fatherhood and war, of women with conformity, identity, forbidden dreams and love. Rich in period atmosphere and in 1950s detail, KEEPING THE HOUSE illuminates the courage it takes to shape and reshape a life, and the difficulty of ever knowing the truth about another person’s desires. KEEPING THE HOUSE is an unforgettable novel about small town life and big matters of the heart.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Book Contest Coming!!!

I would like to let you know about a contest I will be having soon.
Jen, from Book Club Girl has given me the heads up.
I have not been able to get any following on my other blog, Jewish Rantings. She has agreed to give me a few copies of a new novel by Diane Spechler, Who by fire. This will be in conjunction with the November book blog radio. You can visit me at Jewish Rantings.
Further details will follow. Let all your friends Jewish or not know about it.

I will give it a try

This is my firs time entering a contest. Dar, at Peeking Through The Pages is doing a book giveway for the book, Broken.
The premise of the book reminds me of " To Kill A Mockingbird". I loved the book and the movie so I will give it a try.

Blogger Appreciation Week

It is finally here. All of us that are book bloggers have been anticipating this coming week.
Blogger Appreciation Week. I did not think it would be a big deal. Over At My Friend's Amy's Blog, she started this whole project and I think she did a great job. She deserves around of applause. I will be listing all the bloggers involved with free giveaways below.
If you follow along for the festivities of BBAW at My Friend Amy, you will find many chances to win LOTS of goodies! Like what? Well have a look below. All of these things will be given away between September 15-19. There will be a huge variety of ways to win them and giveaways will be announced constantly throughout the week. So be sure to check in often!

A HUGE thank you to Hachette Book Group, Penguin Group USA, Harlequin, The B&B Media Group, Shera of SNS Blog Design, WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group, Catherine Delors, Pamela Binnings Ewen, Andromeda Romano-Lax, Ceceilia Dowdy, Sormag, Book Club Girl, Savvy Verse and Wit, Cafe of Dreams, Fashionista Piranha, and Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin'?.

Daily Raffles:
Monday--Books and Chocolate sponsored by My Friend Amy and Hey Lady! Whatcha' Readin?
Tuesday--Books and Going Green sponsored by My Friend Amy
Wednesday--Books and Coffee sponsored by My Friend Amy
Thursday--Books and Charity sponsored by My Friend Amy and Fashionista Piranha
Friday--Books and Movies sponsored by My Friend Amy

Win a Book Club Girl Hostess Survival Kit!
Do you find it's your turn to host book club and not only do you not know what to serve but you don't know what books to offer up for the next month's selection?! Let Book Club Girl come to your rescue with the the Book Club Girl Hostess Survival Kit.

One lucky winner of the kit will receive:

* A basket of cheese, crackers, cookies and wine for up to 12 people
* 5 great book group books to vote on for your group's next pick. And Book Club Girl will then donate 12 copies whichever book is chosen for your entire group to read.
* 12 Book Club Girl mousepads to give out as party favors that night
* 12 Book Club Girl bookmarks to mark everyone's favorite passages
* 12 Book Club Girl coasters to protect your coffee table from all those wine glasses!
TWO SORMAG Goody Bags containing books and more!

A Special Pamper Me Basket from Cafe of Dreams!
From Avon Foot Works
~ Inflatable watermelon shaped foot tub
~ 3.4 FL oz Watermelon Cooling Foot Lotion
~ 3.4 FL oz Watermelon Exfoliating Foot Scrub
~ 12 count Watermelon Effervescent Foot Tablets
~ An ARC of So Long At The Fair by Christina Schwarz
~ A variety of Hot Chocolate and Tea mixes

A pre-made blog template from SNSDesign!

A Subscription to Poetry Magazine from Savvy Verse and Wit!

Mistress of the Revolution by Catherine Delors
The Moon in the Mango Tree by Pamela Binnings Ewen
The Spanish Bow by Andromeda Romano-Lax
John's Quest by Cecelia Dowdy
Confessions of a Contractor by Richard Murphy
Acedia & Me by Kathleen Norris
The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell
The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
The Book of Lies by Brad Meltzer
Supreme Courtship by Christopher Buckley
A Tale Out of Luck by Willie Nelson with Mike Blakely
The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent
When Will There Be Good News by Kate Atkinson
An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination by Elizabeth McCracken
Exit Music by Ian Rankin
The Smart One and the Pretty One by Claire LaZebnikMistress of the Revolution by Catherine Delors
The Moon in the Mango Tree by Pamela Binnings Ewen
The Spanish Bow by Andromeda Romano-Lax
John's Quest by Cecelia Dowdy
Confessions of a Contractor by Richard Murphy
Acedia & Me by Kathleen Norris
The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell
The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
The Book of Lies by Brad Meltzer
Supreme Courtship by Christopher Buckley
A Tale Out of Luck by Willie Nelson with Mike Blakely
The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent
When Will There Be Good News by Kate Atkinson
An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination by Elizabeth McCracken
Exit Music by Ian Rankin
The Smart One and the Pretty One by Claire LaZebnik
Gunmetal Black by Daniel Serrano
Isolation by Travis Thrasher
The Miracle Girls by Anne Dayton and May Vanderbilt
Every Freaking! Day With Rachell Ray by Elizabeth Hilts
Dewey by Vicki Myron
The Shiniest Jewel by Marian Henley
Keep the Faith by Faith Evans
The Book of Calamities by Peter TrachtenbergExit Music by Ian Rankin
The Smart One and the Pretty One by Claire LaZebnik
Gunmetal Black by Daniel Serrano
Isolation by Travis Thrasher
The Miracle Girls by Anne Dayton and May Vanderbilt
Every Freaking! Day With Rachell Ray by Elizabeth Hilts
Dewey by Vicki Myron
The Shiniest Jewel by Marian Henley
Keep the Faith by Faith Evans
The Book of Calamities by Peter Trachtenberg
A is for Atticus by Lorilee Craker
After the Fire by Robin Gaby Fisher
Mike's Election Guide by Michael Moore
War as They Knew It by Michael Rosenberg
Fixing Hell By Col. (ret.) Larry C. James
Wild Boy: My Life with Duran Duran by Andy Taylor
The Last Under-Cover: The True Story of an FBI Agent's Dangerous Dance with Evil By Bob Hamer
Border Lass by Amanda Scott
Insatiable Desire by Rita Heron
Hungry for More by Diana Holquist
Free Food for Millionaires by Min Jin Lee
Trespassers Will Be Baptized by Elizabeth Emerson Hancock
He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not by Trish Ryan
Never Surrender by General Jerry Boykin
Dream in Color by Congresswoman Linda Sánchez, Congresswoman Loretta Sánchez
Beyond Belief by Josh Hamilton
Cobain Unseen by Charles R. Cross
Doing Business in 21st Century India by Gunjan Bagla
Branding Only Works on Cattle by Jonathan Salem Baskin
Launching a Leadership Revolution by Chris Brady, Orrin Woodward
How to Hear from God by Joyce Meyer
Knowing Right from Wrong by Thomas D. Williams
Pope John Paul II: An Intimate Life by Caroline Pigozzi
Pure by Rebecca St. James
He Loves Me! by Wayne Jacobson
So You Don't Want to Go to Church Anymore by Wayne Jacobson and Dave Coleman
Move On, Move Up by Paula White
The Rosary by Gary Jansen
Shoot the Moon by Billie Letts
The Choice by Nicholas Sparks
Right Livelihoods by Rick Moody
by George by Wesley Stace
The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold
Trunk Music by Michael Connelly
Hollywood Crows by Joseph Wambaugh
Dead Boys by Richard Lange
The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters by Lorraine Lopez
Sisterchicks Go Brit! by Robin Jones Gunn
Beyond the Night by Marlo Schalesky
With Endless Sight by Allison Pittman
Harlequin Titles: To Be Announced

Many other blogs are giving away books and prizes for BBAW as well! You can see the links to all of these giveaways here.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Book Club Meeting Today

We had our book club meeting for the first time at Barnes and Noble.
It was convenient and everyone seemed to like it there.
All of us agreed to meet here again on October 22nd at 1P.M.
We had some business, and then some more business and then it was back to
We decided on a few things, do you remember, how crazy last year was with us. Participating in gift wrapping?? If you do, then you would agree that it is best to skip December's meeting. We decided to read something totally different, we will be reading Exile by James North Patterson. Since the book is 600+, We will wait to discuss it in January. In February, we will be discussing, People of the Book by Geraldine March. It is similar to" Davinci Code/Jewish Slant". We are hoping that Rabbi Debbie will be available to host the book club in February. That should be very interesting.
Our next book in October is Keeping The House by Ellen Baker. The author will be joining us, with her treats that she will be sending us.
I love the book cover it drew my interest. I hope the book is as good as the cover, or I am in great trouble. Anyway, here is what everyone thought of the book, AWAY by Amy Bloom.
We felt it was very unrealistic.
The book Away, was a short book less than 300 pages. It was about a young Jewish immigrant.
She looses her husband and daughter in Europe during the pogroms in the early 1920's. She decides to leave Europe to the better life in the United States. But she finds, life is not any better here than in Europe. She is struggling to survive poverty, and the desperation she must endure. She learns that her daughter is alive from a friend. He helps her financially to help her on her way.
She leaves NYC to search for her daughter in Alaska. We learn about her hardships to get there and all the strange people she meets along the way. It would have done better with short stories. She did not know how to make the story flow. She did not know how to change the scenes subtlety. The novel would have done better with short stories.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Hurricane Hannah, Or Was It!!

Hurricane Hannah was nothing but wind and little rain. It hit Myrtle Beach, SC around 1 A.M. The lights flickered on and off a few times. The electricity was off for about 40 minutes. There wasn't anything major. What a gype.
When we heard that it may possibly hit Charleston, SC on Tuesday. I was getting nervous. I thought I better get prepared.
Thursday morning, I went to the store to get esentials like water, batteries,flashlights.
As I was about to pay I read the newspaper, they were saying we will get wind and rain
I decided forget it. I am not buying a thing.
The evening it was going to hit, you should have seen the lines at the store.
Just for a SMALL STORM, THAT WASN"T!! People panic when they hear everything is closing. Because every thing closed down.
I was not going to buy anything because all the food spoils anyway. What's the point.
They closed schools, gov't offices, and all the stores. The stores were boardiing up.
How ridicolous. You see, I have been through it before.
You want to to talk about a real hurricane. click here. I was in a catagory 5 with Hurricane Andrew in August 1991. We were living in Kendall, that is part of South Miami. It was awful. It was over 100 degees. Many of the homes were flattened. WE did not have electricity for weeks. There was not any running water. We couldn't put gas in cars because the pumps run off of electricity. We could not get money at the banks either. You want to talk about stranded. There was a curfew,people were looting.
It took the gov't a few weeks before FEMA was established. We had to wait in line waiting for water. You could only get a gallon of water. I had my two year old son then. It took him a few years not to be afraid of any storm after this.
Homes were flattened. We did get help but it took quite awhile. FEMA was established during Hurricane Andrew. The community of Miami was devasted for weeks. All of us were waiting for help from the gov't. FEMA pays for a portion to help you relocate, and helps you to refurnish your home, and welfare(if I remember), helped pay for food.
Every hurricane season it brings back memories of Hurricane Andrew. One of the things Hurricane Andrew did was to see how unimportant possessions are. I just hope when a real hurricane comes to town with real force , that we all pay attention,
and not sit back.
You cry wolf too many times, then no one is going to listen. The problem these days is the news is too sensationalized.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Book Blog Appreciation Week

Over At My Friends Amy's blog she is having a book blog appreciation week.
the rules and what you can nominate are listed below.
This should be interesting to find out about other reading blogs in cyberspace.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
BBAW Award Nominations are Open

It's time to open nominations for Book Blogger Appreciation Week Awards 2008!

Listed below are the categories of awards. There are many. You may not have a nomination for each award. It doesn't matter. Nominate up to two blogs per category and send an email to BbawawardsATgmailDOTcom with your choices. You DO NOT have to have a blog to make nominations. Comments left on this post will NOT be accepted as nominations. Each category will be narrowed to the top five blogs by number of nominations received, so don't be shy!!! Support your favorite blogs and bloggers! Nominations will close on August 31st.

And the categories for the Book Blogger Appreciation Week Awards 2008 are:

Best General Book Blog
Best Kidlit Blog
Best Christian/Inspirational Fiction Blog
Best Literary Fiction Blog
Best Book Club Blog
Best Romance Blog
Best Thrillers/Mystery/Suspense Blog
Best Non-fiction Blog
Best Young Adult Lit Blog
Best Book/Publishing Industry Blog
Best Challenge Host
Best Community Builder
Best Cookbook Blog
Best History/Historical Fiction Blog
Best Design
Most Chatty
Most Concise
Most Eclectic Taste
Best Name for a Blog
Best Published Author Blog
Best Book published in 2008
Best Meme/Carnival/Event
Most Extravagant Giveaways
Best Book Community site
Write In--think we missed something? Write in your category and nomination and if there are enough other write-ins of the same category it will be added!

Madonna's Of Leningrad

I read the Madonnas of Lenigrad by Debra Dean. This book was selected by You can listen here
The author joined blogradio as well.
But on to the review.
The Madonnas of Leningrad by Debra Dean is the story about Marina, and her memory She is Russian.
The story flashes back and forth from memory from WW2 and the present. Marina is going with her husband and her daughter Helen to her grand daughter's wedding.
We realize that things are not right about her.
She seems confused, and her memory reverts back to WW2 and certain things don't connect right. Her memory is locked only she know what is truth.
Certain times, Marina has flashbacks in her memory and take her back to her days as a young woman in Russia during WW2, with the invasian of Germany. Marina is a docent and takes people on tour at the Heritage Museum. There are pictures that have been rescued while the war is going on. The pictures are taken but the frames are left almost as a reminder that they will be back. The Madonna paintings are remembered in detail by Marina. This is all committed to memory. Also there is a part where we wonder did she have sex with a g-d or with her husband it is never answered.
I thought this was a good connection with the book. And now the present, the daughter becomes the nuturing person. The museum's past, and the painter's past of the Madonna's, and the mother's past all represent memory. I really liked the connection. I thought the author did a good job connecting this with symbolism.
My favorite passage in the book is :
Marin is embarrassed to realize she has been muttering out load. Oh, I beg your pardon. It's nothing, a sort of game I paly.
To see how many paintings I can recall." You are building a memory place ?"
Marina has never heard of such a thing. They don't teach this in school anymore? Anya asks and clucks in display" When I was a girl, we had a memory palaces to help us memorize for our examinations. You chose a actual place, a palace worked best, but any building with lots of room would do, and then you furnished it with whatever you wished to remember."She goes back to her memory of her husband when he is a soldier, and her Uncle is starving and she has chocolate and has to decide to keep it for herself since she is stronger, or give it to him since he is weaker and will die and other terrible times during the invasion.
In the present, after the wedding she is missing after Marina husband, Demitri realizes she is not sleeping. A search party is formed and she is found later. After, the search party, find her. Helen sets the scene. Her mother beomes more confused, and then she has died and the family accepts her death. It is becomes a beautiful thing and a natural order of things. and she dies peacefully. When someon e you know gets dementia, the memory is locked but also there are stories that don't jive. In old age they tend to tell us the stories they never did when they were younger. They are not restrained and their tongue becomes loose.
I don't think many people can read this kind of book because it deals with old age, death and dying. This book would be good for a person going into the field of Gerontology maybe. But not for a person who has a elderly loved one.
But objectively, this was a good read. It was beautifully written. I probably would not have picked this book up myself because it was hard to read because it dealt with old age and dying. I still would like to thank bookclubgirl for sending me a copy. I wanted to be part of the program but I was unable to. My one question to the author was, where did she get the idea of Memory Palace. That was wonderful. That blew my mind. That was a great concept.
Next up on is by Ann Patchett in September. Hopefully, I will be there for that one.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Teaser Tuesday

Tuesday Teasers
Posted by Literarily at 8/19/2008 6:02 PM and is filed under Memes,tuesday teasers

Teaser Tuesdays asks you to:

Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) "teaser" sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your "teaser" from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given.
Please avoid spoilers!

This teaser is from Madonnas Of Lenigrad by Debra Dean.
It is the idea of the city, the idea of the world suggested by the guilded frame that surrounds it.

One Thousand White Women: Book Review

One Thousand White Women By Jim Fergus I have been looking forward to reading, One Thousand White Women. S...