Tuesday, April 12, 2016

I show you my books; you show me yours... vol.15

Life According to Steph

Jana & Steph are doing it again...they are bringing us our favourite link-up...Show Us Your Books!

Last month featured a lot of emotional, heavy books, so I thought I'd start this month with something a little lighter...a mob book!  You know, filled with murders and betrayals.  Super light reading, right?

1.  The Winter of Frankie Machine by Don Winslow - This is the 2nd book I've read by this author. The 1st one (The Power of the Dog) was about drug cartels, and this one centered around a retired mob hitman based in Southern California. I've decided that I need to read every book ever written by this author because I enjoyed both of the ones I've read that much.  Also, I tweeted that sentiment, and the author favorited my tweet, so that makes me like him even more.  4.5/5

2.  Past the Shallows by Favel Parrett - I really wanted to love this book, but I didn't.  Meh.  2/5

3.  Alert by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge - Typical Patterson book.  Quick, page-turner, needing to find out what/who/why NYC is being targeted with bomb and assassination plots.  3.5/5

4.  Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys - Colorful characters, an intriguing story, and a depiction of seedy New Orleans in the 1950s come together for a delightful book.  Highly recommend. 4.5/5

5.  The Ex by Alafair Burke - This book was on one of those lists of highly anticipated thrillers of 2016.  I wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it, I just don't think you need to run and grab it as soon as possible (like I did).  3.5/5

6.  What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty - I read this book as part of the Aussie Author Challenge, and you can read my review of it here.

6.  Little Black Lies by Sharon Bolton - It took me awhile to get into this one, and that is the only reason this wasn't a five-star thriller.  Once I was hooked, I didn't want to stop reading.  Twists galore for any thriller/mystery lovers.  My first book completed for the Around the World in 80 Books challenge, set in the Falklands.  The author's description of this island's community, wildlife, and geography made me feel like I got to know a small corner of the world a little better, and that was the reason I wanted to participate in this challenge.  Recommend.  4+/5

7.  Cross Justice by James Patterson - The 23rd installment of the Alex Cross series.  If you like this series, read this.  Now. If you haven't read this series before, I'm doubting you'll start now.  For Alex Cross fans, 5/5.

8.  Me Before You by Jojo Moyes I purchased this book at a secondhand bookstore almost two years ago. I'd heard so many things about it, I avoided reading it, worried the hype would spoil it for me. It didn't. I adored it. My heart burst with all kinds of emotions. Yes, it is predictable how this story is going to play out, but the ride getting there makes for a wonderful book.  Highly recommend. 5/5


9.  Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden - This book is an example of why I participate in book challenges.  It's been on my radar for years, but I had never picked it up to read...until a challenge encouraged me to do so.  What a beautiful book about a fascinating (and sometimes disturbing) culture. 4/5

DNF:  Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris - . I hate saying this. I really do. Because I don't like to bash books. But, I quit this. It is a collection of short stories that has received a whole helluva a lot of high reviews, but I read the first three stories and really wasn't entertained by any of them. Too many books, too little time, to read something that doesn't entertain me or pique my interest.  This group has actually helped me learn this lesson.

DON'T FORGET (if you haven't already) to take a look at the "Read My Books" challenge happening in June.  It's a good one.  Prizes are to be won!




I've shown you mine; now you show me yours!

45 comments:

  1. Memoirs of a Geisha is one of my favorite stories. I loved the film as well. So beautiful. I need to read Me Before You...everyone seems to have loved it!

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  2. Out of the Easy sounds like my kind of book! I still have Shades of Gray sitting on my Kindle (I remember you recommending it to me in the past), so I think I really need to give Ruta Sepetys a try soon!

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  3. I'm definitely going to check out the Don Winslow books. They sound right up my alley. Little Black Lies is also making my list; I love a good thriller! I haven't read Me Before You yet, but it's being prioritized since the movie is coming out this summer. I like to read the book first, so I can get all grumpy and indignant in the theater when it differs from the book. ;) I'm looking forward to your challenge too! I started going through my long-ignored books and some look good while others were clearly bought because the cover was pretty! LOL!

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  4. Definitely adding a few of these to my list, especially Little Black Lies and Out of the Easy. I LOVED Me Before You, I'll be interested to hear what you think of "After You" if you read it :) I saw a preview for the Me Before You movie a few weeks ago and not quite sure what I think... Sam Claflin seems perfectly cast, not sure yet about Emilia Clarke, although I do love her on Game of Thrones (which might be part of my problem, SUCH a different character). Time shall tell. Thanks for the recommendations!

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  5. I was going to read Me Talk Pretty One Day and then I couldn't find it. After reading this, I think I'll just take it off my list. Whew!

    I might be the only person who didn't love Me Before You. It frustrated me more than anything. The sequel was more interesting, in my opinion, but still didn't love it.

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  6. I love that some of the books on your list are not recently published books, that means when I make up with the library after t-ball I won't have to wait on a hold list for them!

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  7. Me Before You made me sob and sob. I read Memoirs of a Geisha years ago and remember it being a great read.

    I'm going to check out Out of the Easy. Seems like my kind of book.

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  8. I liked Me Talk Pretty One Day when I read it years ago, but haven't read much by Sedaris since.

    I will definitely check out Out of the Easy, especially since I was just there.

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  9. I can't believe you didn't like David Sedaris. He's one of my absolute favorites! But I find him funny... so that makes a difference :) I can't believe how many books you read! Dang! That Out of the Easy looks great!

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  10. YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY i am so so so so glad you loved me before you <3 happy times. womp womp about alice. added the out of the easy to my list.
    okay. i am not a david sedaris fan, but KC is, and I tried to read his book and wanted to bash my head against the wall. i turned to the audiobook and LOVED it. i highly recommend it. he really is quite funny and is just quite likable. so i don't know if you like audiobooks or whatever, but if you're interested i could totally send it to you.
    i am behind on my blog reading, but i will catch up and read about your challenge but you know i will participate!

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  11. I'm with you on the too many books, too little time. I learned that lesson last year and never looked back. Same with movies... or anything really! The Ex caught my attention solely from the cover. I might add it.

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  12. I hate when I just have to quit a book - but I'm learning that its not the end of the world. Not every book is for everyone. I had to do that to The Paris Wife & so many liked that.
    I am up next at the library for After You & CANT WAIT to get back in that story

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  13. Haha I actually like David Sedaris books, but his stories all have the same style. I don't know why they make me smile. I added Out of the Easy to my list, sounds really good.

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  14. Haha my husband is not a big reader but loves Sedaris. Also Chuck Palahniuk- but I can't stand either of them!

    I have probably read more than half of the Cross series but haven't picked up a Patterson in a while, even though I actually really enjoy his writing.

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  15. Saw in the comments they are making a movie of Me Before You... Yay! It took me a while to read as well but was glad I did, and I liked the sequel even better (although I'm probably the only person who thinks so).

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  16. hmmm.. Memoirs of a Geshia. I've go the movie, but I've never read the book. I kind of forgot about it :( I'm going to add it to my list!

    Sarah
    The Midwest Darling

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  17. Isn't Memoirs haunting? I loved it so much. If you haven't already, you should watch the movie. The cinematography is absolutely stunning.

    Adding "Out of the Easy" to my want to read list now. :)

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  18. Ooh, I LOVED Memoirs of a Geisha! And it's outside my normal genre, too, and I may have read it for a book challenge also (maybe I don't remember). Everything about their culture was fascinating, even the darker bits.

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  19. Out of the Easy sounds like a good one! I've been adding a lot more books to my DNF list this year-- usually once I start I always try and finish (unless it's a library book and I'm out of time) but I have so many books to read, I'd rather just start something new if I'm not loving what I'm reading. I've never wanted to read Memoirs... but I've never really known what it's about, but checking it out now & adding it to my tbr list!

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  20. I'm a big fan of Liane Moriarty, so I'm going to add What Alice Forgot even though it didn't grab you; I just need to see for myself. I haven't read anything by David Sedaris but I feel with all the positive reviews I need to give that a shot as well, but maybe I'll start with one of his other works. Memoirs on deck to read between now and July :)

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  21. I added Out of the Easy. New Orleans is my favorite city to visit! I also loved Me Before You and Memoirs of a Geisha. Bummer that you didn't like What Alice Forgot - I really enjoyed that one, but it was my first Moriarty. I'm also loving the June challenge, especially since it's one I really can't fail!

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  22. Ooh, I need to read Little Black Lies! The Falklands fascinate me because my dad fought in the Falklands War.

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  23. Ooh, I'm falling behind on my James Patterson books. Just added the two here on my to read list. Out of the Easy and What Alice Forgot are already on my to read list. I liked Me Before You and Memoirs of a Geisha.

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  24. So sorry that you didn't like Me Talk Pretty One Day. I listened to it on audiobook and Sedaris narrated it as well. I thought it was hysterical at times, but I often wondered if the things that made the audiobook so funny, like Sedaris' infection and pacing, was evident in written form. I can see where it would be a book where the audiobook was much better.

    Me Before You is next in my lineup. Had a to a break from challenge books and read (well, listen to) an MC/Badboy romance. Not my typical book, but every now and then I get a hankering for a rough and rowdy romance involving some badass bikers. LOL!

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  25. Even though James Patterson can sometimes get old, I still love reading his books. Little Black Lies and Out Of The Easy sound like such interesting reads! For some reason New Orleans is such a fun city to read about, so I'm sure that I'll love Out Of The Easy!

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  26. I hadn't heard of Me Before You before, but this book totally sounds like something I would be interested in reading :)

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  27. Out of the Easy sounds like the one for me from this list. Sorry you didn't enjoy What Alice Forgot, I liked it but it's the first book I've read by the author so who knows, maybe I'll prefer the others?

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  28. I can't wait to read "Me Before You"!!! I haven't read a good love story in a while. And glad you liked Memoirs. It really is a lovely description of another culture and yes, sometimes it was disturbing. I started reading Me Talk Pretty many years ago and I didn't find it funny at all. I also quit it.

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  29. I love authors that favorite and/or respond to tweets. It makes me like them and their works so much more! I haven't read Out of the Easy yet, but I did just read the author's latest book Salt to the Sea. It's really very good so I'll probably read everything else she's written soon! I'm so glad you liked Me Before You!! It's definitely one of my favorites!! Hopefully the movie will be decent.

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  30. I am so glad that you liked Me Before You!!!! I really liked After You too. You know Will is gone, so the book can't be the same. Don't hold it to the expectations of the first and you will enjoy seeing what happens to Lou without Will. I think that The Winter of Frankie Machine sounds interesting, as does Little Black Lies.

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  31. Several of these are on my "To Read" list already: Little Black Lies, What Alice Forgot (it sucks that it didn't live up to the hype for you, though!), and Me Before You.

    I'm adding Out of the Easy for now, and I may add the Don Winslow book later. I added the other Winslow book you reviewed, but I think I'll see how I feel about that one before adding another. Mob/drug lord stories are very hit or miss for me (this is true for movies as well).

    I have a different book by Alafair Burke on my list (Long Gone), but I keep seeing The Ex pop up on my library website and Goodreads as recommended or "new/hot." I may read it eventually, but I'll probably read Long Gone first since it's been hanging out on my list for a while.

    I'm proud of you for quitting a book! I still can't. I wish I could sometimes, but I just force myself through it. Why? I have no idea. I'm a weirdo like that, I guess. Haha. You're absolutely right, though, there are too many great books out there to waste precious time on shitty ones (or ones you just can't get into). Now if only I could heed that advice ...

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  32. Me Before You is so, so good! I felt the same about The Ex. I'm adding Out of the Easy and like I said on FB, I gotta get around to Geisha already! Haha!

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  33. Have you watched the preview for the Me Before You movie? It made me so happy!

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  34. Ooh, I <3 New Orleans, so Out of the Easy is definitely going on my list! I've found that I enjoy Sedaris's stuff way more on audiobook, btw. The stories are just funnier in his voice.

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  35. i love the concept of your read our books challenge! I am so guilty of pushing aside the books I own for other library books or books that come out and grab my attention immediately. I can't wait to take part!

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  36. Definitely checking out Little Black Lies and Out Of the Easy! Thanks for the recommendations! I loved Me Before You and the sequel, After You!

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  37. So glad you still enjoyed Me Before You despite all the hype - I know how sometimes that can totally "ruin" a book for you. I adored that book too. I haven't read the sequel yet, and I need to get on that. I'm not sure my heart will be able to handle the film adaptation though - I can't even get through the trailer without crying lol.

    I've only read one David Sadaris book before (Dress Your Family in Corduroy) and I thought it was pretty bad. I too had read it based on "rave reviews", but I didn't find it funny at all.

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  38. Thanks to you, I have so many more books to add to my TBR list! Yayyy!!

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  39. Out of the Easy is definitely on my to read list. I loved memoirs of a Geisha, so I'm glad you enjoyed it :)

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  40. Out of the Easy looks really good, adding! Love that you loved Me Before You. And I'm intrigued by your review of Memoirs of a Geisha. I too have had this on my radar, but not quite my TBR, for years and wasn't sure I'd ever read it. These few sentences of yours changed my mind though! Adding it to the list.

    I'm sorry to read you didn't like Me Talk Pretty One Day. I love David Sedaris and think he's an incredibly storyteller, but he can be quite UN-enthralling at times too. If you can ever hear a recording of him telling stories, though, I definitely recommend. He's featured often in episodes of This American Life! (And I fully agree. Too many books to read one you don't love.)

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  41. I'm so happy that you loved Memoirs of a Geisha! I adored that book. Also Me Before You. Like you said, you knew exactly where it was going but it didn't make it any less enjoyable. Out of the Easy is getting added to my list.

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  42. The Don Winslow one looks really good; I'm definitely going to check his books out. You're so right about Me Before You -- I remember reading it and thinking "I know what's going to happen, but I'm so desperately hoping I'm wrong..."

    Also -- I don't usually participate in reading challenges, but the Around the World sounds fun!

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  43. I looooooved David Sedaris in college but now when I hear him on This American Life (the podcast) I don't like him. Not sure how I would feel about him now. I loved Me Before You and I'm looking forward to the movie. I have What Alice Forgot waiting for me on my kindle and I've heard it's one of the best Moriarty books so I'm pumped!

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  44. (I'm late, I know. Whatevs. Better late than never?)
    So I really like it when people I like have the same opinions as me. It makes me feel validated. Probably silly, but that's how I roll.

    I'm so glad you like Me Before You and I felt very similar about What Alice Forgot (and I also couldn't remember Elizabeth's name right after I read it) and about Memoirs of a Geisha (I really liked the movie).

    I hate when I read something that everyone loves that just kills me, for instance David Sedaris or Augusten Burroughs. I've never been able to finish any of their books, even though I heard they were hilarious and I love me some hilarious books. :(

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