Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Late Bloomer's Revolution: A Memoir by Amy Cohen

This is about the author's experience of life, love, and dating in her 30s.

It is funny, honest, and fairly enjoyable to read, but I'm not raving about it.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

It seems like when a loved one commits suicide, the family and friends are left wondering why and what they could have done to prevent it.

In this book, Hannah Baker is a high schooler who commits suicide. But before she does, she makes an audio recording on seven cassette tapes describing the circumstances and 13 people that made her decide to finally end her life. Each of the 13 people will receive the package of tapes and are instructed to send it to the next person on the list after they are finished listening.

The story is written from the perspective of Clay Jensen, one of the last people to receive the package of tapes. As he listens to Hannah's story, all of the pieces and people click together and he is left understanding that Hannah just wanted to know that she was cared about. So many people had the chance to demonstrate this, including Clay who, out of fear, was not courageous enough to tell Hannah how he felt about her.

Wow. This book was really good, but heavy. It made me think about how I treat other people. And it reminded me that I never know the whole story behind people's choices.

A quote:
"I guess that's the point of it all. No one know for certain how much impact they have on the lives of other people. Oftentimes, we have no clue."

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry by Kathleen Flinn

When the author, Kathleen Flinn, is fired from her management job in London, she moves to Paris to pursue her dream of attending Le Cordon Bleu, the famous culinary school. This book follows her schooling through the Basic, Intermediate, and Superior courses. She weaves in other experiences of living in Paris, getting married, and hosting friends from back home (some gracious, others not). At the end of each chapter, the recipe featured in that chapter is included.

I savored this book. Each chapter was fun to read and I tried to read only one or two chapters at a time in order to prolong the reading experience. I even found Boomer reading over my shoulder several times, so I think he found it interesting as well.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates

Frank and April Wheeler seem like they have it all - a nice house in the suburbs and two kids. He works at an office job and she stays home with the kids. And yet, they are discontent. He's bored at his job and she never achieved her dream of becoming an actor.

They decide to leave it all behind and move to France with their kids to start over again. April will work and Frank will spend time figuring out who he is and what he wants. And then their plan unravels.

I enjoyed this one. The story, even though it takes place in the 1950s, seems like it could describe a couple living in today's world - the desperation, the lack of communication, the unspoken discontents. Which is why it is a tad uncomfortable.

I haven't seen the movie. I'm not sure if I will since the book was complete enough in itself and I have it all pictured in my mind.