Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Reviews in a Minute

Howdy howdy.

I'm starting to think that if you are a real-life adventurer, you don't have time for armchair voyages... It is hard to believe that my last post was over 18 months ago. Boy, have I seen some geography in that time! In the few fleeting hours I've spent at home not recovering from jet lag, I have managed a few titles. In the interests of brevity (and sanity) here are my quick reviews:

1) Keeping Faith by Jody Picoult.
Touching, women's read (but not traditional chick-lit) about a little girl named Faith. Caught in the midst of a messy divorce, Faith discovers an 'imaginary' friend to help her through the toughest times. Exploring issues of personal beliefs, mental illness, exploitation, and love Mrs. Picoult challenges even the most stalwart and pragmatic readers to questions their beliefs. For the first time in a long time, I spent a weekend reading just to see how the story would end. 5*

2) The Sunday Morning Philosophy Club by Alexander McCall Smith.
I picked up this slim jacket for two reasons: 1) To see what everyone was raving about with regards to Mr. McCall Smith; and 2) It is set in the New Town of Edinburgh. A traditional detective story with a less then obvious sleuth this book was a quick read. If you like nosey neighbors, you'll love Isabel Dalhousie. Although not to my taste, Mr. McCall Smith did present a plausible mystery which could be solved by even your most average bear. 2.5*

3) The Alchemist by Paul Coelho.
Mr. Coelho's iconic novel needs little reviewing as there are tomes published on it already. It is the story of a boy's quest to find the Alchemist during which he learns about life and himself. Although greatly applauded as 'a fable for our time,' I was actually less than impressed. But, new age philosophy does little to impress this pragmatist. 3*

4) PS, I Love You by Cecelia Ahern.
Tear-jerking, classic, chick-lit. Although not an avid reader of chick-lit, Ms. Ahern's novel of loss and moving on caught my eye because I was working through similar issues myself. At times hysterically funny, others immensely sad, this was a wonderful holiday read. (Yes, it went in my backpack to Crete for a month!) Do yourself a favor though - read the book and skip the movie! It was horrid. 4*

Rightey oh! Four books in four minutes. Cool! I've just come back from a week in the US during which I read The Codex by Douglas Preston. If you're looking for a beach read of the adventure variety you'll enjoy this book. My review will be coming in early July!

Until then, enjoy the words!

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