Saturday, February 5, 2011

Book review catch up!

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

I have a confession... I won an ARC of this book during a giveaway over a year ago and have only just now read it. Shame on me. Honestly, I have no idea why I took so long to read this. It was pretty good! I don't know if I think it's as fantastic as everyone else does, but it does top the list of great YA novels.

Before I Fall is about Samantha, a senior in high school that is part of that inevitable group of "mean girls" in high school. She's extremely popular, but hasn't always been. She knows how it feels to not be liked and teased in school, yet she still contributes to making life miserable for the unpopular kids now.

One night Samantha dies in a car accident leaving a party with her friends. Instead of moving on, Samantha lives out her last day over and over... What would you do differently if you knew that today was your last day to live?

This book really makes you stop and examine how we treat other people. It really made me think about the different personality types we all have as people and how something that might be nothing to you can really bother someone else.

If you're craving a little YA and a quick read definitely look into Before I Fall.

The Help by Kathrynn Stockett

First off, this is the first book I read on my Nook! I loved the convenience of the Nook and it's especially great at the gym. Nothing has kept me on the treadmill longer than a great book - total plus!

I've read a lot of great books, but you know a book is really fantastic when you just can't stop thinking about it. When you're not reading, you want to be. I wanted to be reading this book every chance I could get. At the same time though, I didn't want to get to the end. I didn't want it to end!

This book uncovers the truth about what it was really like to be an African-American maid during the Civil Rights Movement in the South. That period of our history has always fascinated me, as well depressed me, and living in the South for a short period of time only piqued that interest more. The Help is narrated by three different women. Wise, bookish maid, Aibileen who has raised seventeen white children in her lifetime. Sassy, sharp tongued maid, Minny who is a phenomenal cook. Recent college graduate, Skeeter who aspires to be a writer.

Each time Aibileen's sections ended I was sad. I wanted to read more about Aibileen, I fell in love with her character and have definitely added her to my list of fictional characters that I admire. She's smart, interesting and kind. Her story will break your heart and make you want to reach out and hug her.

I'm so excited that this book is going to be a movie! I cannot wait to see one of my favorite characters in action on the big screen! :)

Do not wait to read this book. Get to the bookstore, reserve it at the library, borrow it from a friend. You won't regret it! If you have a Nook I am allowed to lend it to one person! Hint, hint! ;)

What are you reading right now?


Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I also love The Help! It was such a great book. I think since you liked that, you would like Saving CeeCee Honeycutt. I just read that & really liked it! Now I am reading Shanghai Girls which I think is so-so...

Ms. Z. said...

I'm your newest follower and loving your book reviews.
I love to read and can't wait to pick up one of the books you recommend.


Ms.Z. from

Lauren Thomas said...

Ok you've twisted my arm! Definitely adding The Help to my list!

Emmy said...

"The Help" is phenomenal! I'm definitely going to have to check out "Before I Fall" and possibly add it to my classroom library!

I just finished "Unbearable Lightness," Portia de Rossi's memoir. It was beautifully written, raw, and honest. Also, if you're looking for more YA books, the "Hunger Games" trilogy is AWESOME. :)

Mandy said...

The Help is probably one of my favorite books of all time. I read it a few years ago and was completely blown away by Stockett's writing.

Shannon said...

I still haven't read The Help! I want to really badly, but I've got so many other books that I haven't read yet! Ahhhh!

Kara said...

I'm about 1/2 way through Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest - fabulous! Then I'm moving onto Water for Elephants.

The Many Thoughts of a Reader said...

I am reading Shanghai Girls and Sing You Home.. I need to get off the internet and keep reading..

Lesli said...

I really enjoyed The Help. It was one book that lived up to the hype and I continued to think about it while I wasn't reading it but wanted to be (hard to put down!) and when I had finished it. I will say it took me a little bit of time to really get into it (maybe the first chapter or so), but when I did I loved it.

The book I just finished was "Diary of a Fat Housewife" by Rosemary Green. This book was from 1995 & I found it at the public library, but it was so good--it really resonated with me. No, I have never weighed 300 pounds, but I think there was a lot in the book to relate to. I recommend it!

Erica said...

I'm reading The Help right now and really enjoying it. I wish I had a name pronunciation guide though, I may need to Google some of the names soon:)

Erica said...

I'm reading The Help right now and really enjoying it. I wish I had a name pronunciation guide though, I may need to Google some of the names soon:)

Shoshanah said...

I keep meaning to read The Help! I've heard so many good things about it, and really want to be sure I've read it before the movie comes out