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Monday, September 30, 2013

#BookReview: Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

I really enjoyed this book once I got into it, but I feel like I should warn anyone that plans to listen to the audio version that it can be very confusing.  There are a lot of characters to keep up with and I've found that when that's the case, it's easier to actually read the book so you can refer back to previously read passages to figure out which character is which.  Since I listened to the audio version, I was confused for at least the first hour or so.  After that, it was smooth sailing.
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Friday, September 27, 2013

#BookReview: Mo' Meta Blues: The World According to Questlove by Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson

"But sometimes I only remember things through records.  They're a trigger for me, they're Pavlov's bell.  Without thinking about the music, I can't remember the experience.  But if I think long enough about a specific album, something else always bubbles up."

That quote right there sums up why I love Questlove and his love of music.  Friends and family make fun of me because no story I ever tell is complete without referring to a song or album that was out at the time. I can remember exactly what I was doing the first time I heard "The Double Dutch Bus" (getting my hair braided by my play mama at day camp), Doug E. Fresh & Slick Rick's "The Show" (walking to day camp) or the whole LL Cool J "Bigger & Deffer" tape (riding the bus from a sewage treatment plant on a science camp field trip).  So I can definitely feel where Questlove is coming from.  Music has been such an integral part of his life from the beginning.
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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

#BookReview: The Wedding Gift by Marlen Suyapa Bodden

It was common for slave masters to see their offspring with enslaved women as property and not as their actual children.  So it's no surprise when Sarah, the daughter of house slave Emmeline, is trained to be a personal maid to her sister, the daughter of the master and mistress of the estate.  And when Clarissa is married off later on, Sarah is given to her so that she may continue her role.
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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

#BookReview: The Awesome Girl's Guide to Dating Extraordinary Men by Ernessa T. Carter

I have only been waiting on this book for two years.  Actually, a little over two years, but who's counting?  Even as 32 Candles was released, Ernessa T. Carter promised that a new book was coming.  She let us see chapters and everything.  Then life happened and the book was delayed.  Imagine my surprise when I saw someone mention The Awesome Girl's Guide last month.  I squealed with glee knowing that it would just be a matter of time before I'd have a chance to immerse myself in the world of Ernessa and her true to life characters.
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Monday, September 23, 2013

#BookReview: The Bride Wore Size 12 by Meg Cabot

Retired pop diva turned assistant residence hall director Heather Wells has a wedding to plan.  She's got the man, Cooper Cartwright, and the date, September 28, but guess what else Heather has?  Fans of the Heather Wells series know that Heather is famous for being the Brittney Spears of her day.  They also know she's famous for working in the death dorm, also known as Fischer Hall.  As such, you can hazard to guess that there's yet another body standing in the way of what should be Heather's special day.
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Friday, September 20, 2013

#BookReview: Life in Spades by Frances Frost

I'm usually hesitant to read books by authors that approach me through email or social media.  It's not that I don't think they can write, it's that most of the time, they disregard my review request guidelines and try to pitch books that don't appeal to me in the least.  Then along came Frances Frost with her novel Life in Spades.
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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

#BookReview: Shake Down the Stars by Renee Swindle

Admitting that you have a problem is always the first step, right?  But if you won't admit you have a problem, even to yourself, what are others around you supposed to do?  As Piper Nelson quietly, and sometimes not so quietly, implodes, her family watches and you get the idea that most of them would prefer that she do it in private or at least out of view of the general public.
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Monday, September 16, 2013

#BookReview: Who Asked You? by Terry McMillan

Stella got her groove back and so did Terry!  After the less than stellar novels, The Interruption of Everything and Getting to Happy, it seems that McMillan is finally back on track.  With writing as refreshing as when we first read her words with Mama, it would seem that the cloud that's hung over McMillan's writing has finally lifted.
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Friday, September 13, 2013

#BookReview: Miss Julia Stirs Up Trouble by Ann B. Ross

I never thought I'd see the day when I only gave Miss Julia two stars, but Ann B. Ross' latest, Miss Julia Stirs Up Trouble, is only deserving of two stars.  While I usually enjoy the books and story lines, this one should not have been written, at least not in the format that it was.
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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

#BookReview: Ladies' Night by Mary Kay Andrews

Blogger extraordinaire, Grace Stanton has everything she could ask for.  Her blog, Grace Notes, does so well that it's become not only her full-time business, but also her husband's.  Ben quit his job to manage the site and it's afforded them a fabulous house in a gated community, expensive cars and a closet full of Tory and Kate.  Life is good.  Then Grace catches Ben in the front seat of his car with her assistant, Jamie, and they're doing more than just making small talk.
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Monday, September 9, 2013

#BookReview: What the River Washed Away by Muriel Macleod


The first thing everyone notices about What the River Washed Away is the cover.  I know when I saw it on the shelf at BEA, my first thought was, "Why are they re-issuing The Darkest Child?"  The advance copy of the book noted that this was not the final cover, so I thought, well then they'll change it, because if I noticed it, others will.  And you all did.  I had at least five people ask me on Goodreads if it wasn't the same cover as Delores Phillips' acclaimed novel.  Apparently, the publisher decided to stick with the cover.  It has been almost 10 years since The Darkest Child was published, but they must not know that readers have minds like elephants.  Now that we've cleared that up, let's jump into the book.
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Friday, September 6, 2013

#BookReview: Bootlicker - Steve Piacente


 It's Big Ike Washington's turn.  He's been the go to man for the black communities of South Carolina for the longest.  It's not that Ike has that much power as mayor of small town Kilgo, it's that he has the ear of U.S. Senator Lander McCauley. That, combined with the congressional redistricting of the state, is enough to insure that Ike Washington will be the first black congressman from South Carolina since Reconstruction.
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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

#BookReview: Joe Victim by Paul Cleave

Slow Joe, the Verbal Kint of Christchurch, New Zealand, is back.  Readers of last year's book, The Cleaner , will remember how delusional and psychotic Joe was.  After embarking on a four year killing spree, in which no one guesses that Joe is the actual killer, he is finally caught.  Now in prison awaiting trial, Joe is still trying to convince everyone that he's either slow, doesn't remember what happened or both.  And at times, one almost believes him.
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