Tuesday, February 10, 2015

List #21 - I'll show you my books; you show me yours... vol.1

Steph and Jana host a monthly link-up - a place for bloggers & readers to share what books they've read the previous month.  I blog.  I read.  I've talked about the multiple book challenges I'm tackling.  So, this link-up is a great way to share my thoughts on books I've read, keep track of my book challenges, and find (even more!) books to read that are shared by others.  Plus, Jana put on the positive peer pressure.  I cratered.
Life According to Steph 

The Books I Read in January:

 The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey - In Semi-Charmed Kind of Life's Winter Book Challenge, we were asked to "read a book from a genre that you normally don't read".  This book was on the goodreads 2014 reader's choice list in the 'Horror' category.  I read a lot of different types of books including psycho thrillers with serial killers, but I don't usually go to the 'Horror' section.  If you like apocalyptic part horror, part science-fiction, part zombie-type people, this is the book for you. I don't regularly like horror, apocalyptic, sci-fi, or zombie-esh stories, but I was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed this book.  The lead character, Melanie, is fantastic.  This is a great read IF this is your kinda thing or if you want to step outside your comfort zone. 4/5

Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King - "Dark, funny, brilliant." - Ellen Hopkins, New York Times Bestselling Author. I totally, completely, absolutely agree. So many YA books are female points of view. This one is a mix of a 15 year old boy's reality and dream sequences, and it is a fantastic book. 4.5/5

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery - In Book Challenge by Erin (yes, it's run by moi), I selected this book for "a book set in Europe".  A friend recommended it a few months back, and it was time for me to read it.  There are people on goodreads that despise this book. Upon closer inspection, I think those people take themselves way too seriously. I found this book to be charming and beautiful. It has been a long time that I've actually copied quotes from a book. I did that with this one. One quick example: "What does Art do for us? It gives shape to our emotions..." 5/5

 Eye Candy by R.L. Stine - This book was also selected to fit in a book challenge categroy.  It is authored by the same person as the "Goosebumps" series, written for an adult market. It was bad. The lead character is unlikeable. The writing is simplistic (just like this review is simplistic). Most of the characters are underdeveloped. 1/5

 Cockroaches by Jo Nesbo - This is the 2nd book from a series written by a Norwegian author that features a very flawed, but very bright Norwegian detective. I enjoy the series because the detective gets sent overseas when tragedy strikes a Norwegian citizen. The first was set in Sydney; this one was set in Bangkok.  I imagine I'll end up reading the entire series.  For crime/thriller readers, this is a good one. 4/5

 Rocks: My Life In and Out of Aerosmith by Joe Perry with David Ritz - I'm a rock music fan. I'm a rock biography reader. I'm a Joe Perry fan. This book did not disappoint. He blends the stories of youth, the music business, his music passion, family dynamics, stories of addiction, and the relationships with his band mates (especially the complex brotherly love/hate with Steven Tyler). I've read Steven Tyler's autobiography, and I think he is a brilliant frontman...but, I will always be Team Joe. 4.5/5

 Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho - I read this for the 2015 TBR Book Pile Challenge.  I read two or three of this internationally famous author years ago, so I grabbed this book at a second hand bookstore, and it's been sitting on my shelf for a couple of years.  Finally, thanks to the challenge encouraging us to read those books that are collecting dust, I read it.  It was just okay...which was actually disappointing because Paulo Coelho has the capability to write some beautiful stuff. It felt he was trying too hard with this one. There were a few snippets of stories that I was moved by, but the overall book just fell a little flat for me. 2.5/5

I've shown you my books; you show me yours.............................


  1. I read a couple of Jo Nesbo books as well and want to read the whole series! I love grumpy detectives. And The Elegance of the Hedgehog is on my list as well!

  2. I put the first 2 on my Goodreads! The first one is definitely outside my comfort zone and love the "dark, brilliant" description of it.

  3. Boo on the Coelho disappointment. I hate that.

    I'm interested in Joe Perry's book. I read Nikki Sixx's late last year on Jana's recommendation. I find the rocker life fascinating.

  4. I am definitely going to add "Everybody Sees the Ants" to my Goodreads list! That sounds really interesting!

  5. Oh, sorry about the sucky books. I hate that. The girl with all the gifts sounds terrifying but also kind of awesome. It is definitely not my kind of book, but I am getting better at stepping out of my comfort zone and finding amazing books while I'm there.

  6. You read all those books last month?!?! Holy crap! I wish that I had the time to read that much! Dang! Since the beginning of the year, I finished If I Stay, read Lies That Chelsea Handler Told Me & started Gone Girl.

    Mandie ~ http://badbrewpack.blogspot.com/

  7. I had quit a few sucky books as well this month. Though Cockroaches looks interesting.

  8. I have a Jo Nesbo book on my Goodreads list. I wish I could remember which one.

    I definitely do not enjoy horror/sci-fi/anything like that but I do like a good celebrity memoir and a good YA book. My two favorite rock memoirs are Nikki Sixx's and Rick Springfield's (I'm mildly obsessed with the latter).

    And Eye Candy, is that the book the new MTV series with the same name is based on? Because I'm pretty sure I have no interest in either.

  9. Wow! I haven't read an RL Stine book in YEARS!

  10. I think Joe's book sounds interesting. The rocker life is so interesting, i can't imagine seeing all they see while out on the road.

  11. Oooh, I totally want to read Joe Perry's book! I love biographies too. I'm adding those first two books to my list. They aren't typically something I'd read, but your reviews convinced me!

  12. I haven't read Joe Perry's biography yet! I need to get around to it. I am like you and a huge sucker for rocker bios. One of the best I've read was Anthony Kiedis' recently.

  13. That's sad the RL Stine book was bad. I remember how popular those books were in school! That rock star Joe Perry book looks pretty good. I'm not usually a biography reader, but every once in a while I'll pick one up. A lot of people take themselves too seriously on Goodreads, lol!

  14. I'm so excited to see someone reading The Girl With all the Gifts. I didn't read what you had to say about it because I was told by a bookseller that I would probably like it (based off the books that I bought that day) but that I should read it not knowing anything about it. So I'll read your review once I read it. It's sitting on my shelf. :)

  15. I read Veronika Decides to Die a while back for a book club I was in at the time, and I felt the same way. There were a few parts of it that were really good, but overall - meh. I am agree with you that it felt forced.

    I never finished Elegance of the Hedgehog -- is it one of those books that you really need to stick with for a while and then it gets good? It's been a while, but I seem to remember that I was just confused... where is this story going?


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