Saturday, February 28, 2009

Book Review- American Wife

I just finished the book American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld.

From the back cover:

On what might become one of the most significant days in her husband's presidency, Alice Blackwell considers the strange and unlikely path that has led her to the White House--and the repercussions of a live lived, as she believes, "almost in opposition to itself."

A kind, bookish only child born in the 1940s, Alice learned the virtues of politeness early on from her stolid parents and small Wisconsin hometow. Alice candidly describes her modest upbringing and the tragedy that shaped her identity; she recalls her early adulthood as a librarian, and her surprising courtship with the man who swept her off her feet; she tells of the crisis that almost ended their marriage; and she confides the privileges and difficulties of being first lady, a role that is uniquely cloistered yet public, secretive yet exposed.

As her husband's presidency enters its second term, Alice finds herself increasingly conflicted. Ultimately she must confront contradictions years in the making and face questions nearly impossible to answer.

I enjoyed this book. It was a nice break from all of the paranormal books that I have been reading. It really kept my attention and flowed well. Several time, after reading for a while, I would have to stop and remind myself that this is a fiction book. I kept thinking that maybe this book was about Barbara Bush because there are so many similarities, but I knew that it wasn't true.

And as it says on, " A word of advice before reading American Wife: put Laura Bush firmly out of your mind. While bestselling author Curtis Sittenfeld has waxed rhapsodic about her admiration for the first lady, she insists that in this novel, her most ambitious work to date, protagonist Alice Blackwell is most certainly not Laura Bush. Sittenfeld has conceded that she drew on some major events in Mrs. Bush's life, such as the horrific car accident that killed a fellow student in high school and her marriage to a man who is eventually elected president and steers the country into a controversial war. The rest, she says, she invented within the framework of that reality."

So I know its not just me that was thinking about the similarities. The way the story was written really made me connect with the main character and there was one part where I gasped out loud!

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

This book fullfills requirements for the following challenges:
Chick-Lit Challenge 2: 3) Read a new to you author

Friday, February 27, 2009

Friday Fill-In- February 27, 2009

1. I'm tired, I'm sleepy, I want to go to bed.
2. Why do I have so many books and not enough bookshelves?
3. How does this tax program work, anyway?
4. Every morning, I put lip gloss on my lips.
5. I consider myself lucky because I am fortunate enough to still have a job.
6. One day we’ll see a woman president.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to going to the Strawberry Festival with my boyfriend and another couple, tomorrow my plans include going to ESPN the weekend with my boyfriend and Sunday, I want to relax!

Friday Finds- February 27, 2009

Here are my finds for the week:

Everything is Fine- Ann Dee Ellis

Rampant- Diana Peterfreund

The September Sisters- Jillian Cantor

North of Beautiful- Justina Chen Headley

A Match Made in High School- Kristen Walker

Strange Angels- Lili St. Crow

One True Theory of Love- Laura Fitzgerald

Swoon- Nina Malkin

Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side- Beth Fantaskey

Kiss Me Kill Me- Lauren Henderson

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Contests- February 26, 2009

S. Krishna's Books is giving away a copy of Your Roots Are Showing by Elise Chidley. Head over by March 9 to enter.

Booking Through Thursday- February 26, 2009

Hardcover? Or paperback? I prefer paperback..its just easier for me to hold.
Illustrations? Or just text? Just text
First editions? Or you don’t care? Doesn't matter to me
Signed by the author? Or not? I hardly ever keep books, so this doesn't matter to me either

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Contests- February 25, 2009

Carrie Ryan is giving away copies of her debut book, The Forest of Hands and Teeth. Head over by midnight tonight to enter!

Amanda Ashby is having a zombie party with a lot of cool prizes. Head on over to enter!!

Wednesday Wordle- February 25, 2009

Here is a screen shot of my Wordle for the week (Wordle is a toy for generating “word clouds” from words that is seen on my blog)

Waiting on Wednesday- February 25, 2009

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

The Dangerous Book For Demon Slayers
by Angie Fox
Publication Release Date: April 28, 2009

Demon-slaying powers should come with an instruction book…

Seriously. Why does a new hair dryer have a twelve-page how-to manual, but when it comes to ancient demon-fighting hocus-pocus, my biker witch granny gives me just half a dozen switch stars and a rah-rah speech? Oh, and a talking terrier, but that’s another story. It’s not like my job as a preschool teacher prepared me for this kind of thing.

So I’ve decided to write my own manual, The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers, because no one tells me anything. Dimitri, my “protector,” may be one stud of a shape-shifting griffin, but he always thinks he can handle everything by himself. Only he’s no match for the soul-stealing succubi taking over Las Vegas. If I can’t figure out how to save him—and Sin City—there’ll be hell to pay.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

It's Tuesday, Where Are You?- February 24, 2009

Raidergirl3 at An Adventure in Reading asks, "Where is reading taking you today?"

Riley was in the exact center of Benton County, and Benton County contained two competing cheese factories: Fassbinder's our on De Soto Way, and White River Dairy, which was closer to the town of Houghton, though plenty of people who worked at White River still lived in Riley becuase Riley, with nearly forty thousand residents, had for more attractions and conveniences, including a movie theater.
(American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld)

Teaser Tuesdays- February 24, 2009

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers!

My two teasers:

"The snack bar was essentially a glorified shed with a kitchen in the back and a counter where you ordered: whenever an unexpected storm broke out, most people got in their cars and went home, but the most optimistic would cram into the front of the snack bar, hoping the rain would pass."

~pg 337, American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld

Monday, February 23, 2009

Musing Mondays- February 23, 2009

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about the library…
How often do you visit the library? Do you have a scheduled library day/time, or do you go whenever? Do you go alone, or take people with you?

Actually, I don't go to the library anymore! I use several trade sites (TitleTrader, BookMooch, PaperbackSwap, and Frugal Reader) so in the last 2 years my TBR has become over 400 books! I used to go all of the time, whenever I was done with the stack of my books!

Mailbox Monday- February 23, 2009

Mailbox Monday: Here's what came in my mailbox this week:


High Tea- Sandra Harper-- Frugal Reader Book Ring

Sunshine- Robin McKinley-- Frugal Reader Book Ring

Oh My Goth- Gena Showalter-- Frugal Reader Book Ring

Sleeping Arrangements- Madeleine Wickham--Frugal Reader Book Ring


Plum Spooky-Janet Evanovich-- Paperback Swap

A Vision of Murder (Psychic Eye #3)- Victoria

Kitty and the Midnight Hour- Carrie Vaughn--

Lord of Misrule- Rachel Caine--

Jinx- Jennifer Estep--


The Shape of Mercy- Susan Meissner-- Frugal Reader Book Ring


If You Take a Mouse To School- Laura Numeroff- Frugal Reader (for my kindergarten classroom)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Sunday Salon- February 22, 2009

Yesterday my boyfriend and I went to see Slumdog Millionaire. It was a pretty good movie. And I thought it was a cute touch how they dance "bollywood-ish" at the end. My dad has been traveling to India a lot lately, for work--specifically Mumbai. He said that they portrayed it pretty accurately. At first, I begged him to take me with him...but then the attacks happened in the city. He had just left there 4 days before, but one of the hotels where the attacks were is one of his clients. It was scary! He's going back again at the end of March.

I finished and reviewed the following books this week:
Dead End Dating by Kimberly Raye
Dead and Dateless by Kimberly Raye
Your Coffin or Mine? by Kimberly Raye
Just One Bite by Kimberly Raye

I fullfilled items for the following challenges:
Paranormal 999 Challenge: Vampires
What's In A Name Challenge: medical condition (dead)

I am currently reading American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld and up next is How To Create a Magical Relationship by Ariel and Shya Kane.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Book Review- Just One Bite

I just finished the book Just One Bite by Kimberly Raye.

From the back cover:


Lil Marchette, vampire extraordinaire and owner of Manhattan’s hottest hook-up service, is an expert at matching up the lonely and desperate (and sometimes dead). And thanks to the popular local reality dating show Manhattan’s Most Wanted, Lil has plenty of fresh blood to add to the mix–including the biggest, baddest vampire in the Big Apple. Vinnie Balducci, Brooklyn representative for the Snipers of Otherworldly Beings, is making Lil an offer she can’t refuse: find him the perfect woman or she’s going to be swimming with the fishes.

But Lil may not be the only one taking the plunge. The three hunky demon Prince brothers are poking around Lil’s office–hot on the trail of a rogue spirit trying to escape the land down under (not Australia) by possessing some poor, clueless human soul. Then Lil makes a startling discovery: The oblivious human vessel is none other than her loyal assistant, Evie. Between saving Evie from eternal damnation and saving herself from Vinnie’s lethal ultimatum, Lil is sure to be in for the most hellish ride of her afterlife.

Once again, another fun read by Kimberly Raye. I love that she uses funny things that are relevant to the time: "I hadn't seen or talked to him in a month. No phone calls. No e-mails. No text messages. Not even a measly comment on Myspace or Facebook." The next book in the series, Sucker For Love, comes out in June. I can't wait!

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

This book fullfilled the following challenges:

Friday, February 20, 2009

Book Review- Your Coffin or Mine?

I just finished Your Coffin or Mine? by Kimberly Raye.

From the back cover:


For Lil Marchette, the owner of Manhattan’s premier dating service for vampires (and a dazzling denizen of the dark herself), death is all in a night’s work. Unfortunately, it’s going to take more than matching up vamps to pay the bills and fund Lil’s cosmetics addiction. Dare she add actual humans to the mix? Eager to diversify, she signs up for a popular dating show, Manhattan’s Most Wanted (MMW), to pitch her expertise to the perfect target audience–eligible women looking for eligible men.

Of course Lil is trying to forget the one man she’d love to sink her own teeth into: Ty Bonner, the ultraseductive vamp who broke her heart after she gave him the hottest night of his afterlife. Problem is, she and Ty have an intense mental connection and she’s sensing he’s in deep trouble. Even worse, she soon finds herself heading for MMW’s grand finale (cameras are so not a vamp’s best friend). The race is on as Lil struggles to save Ty (and herself) before all hell breaks loose.

This was the third book in the Dead End Dating Series. I enjoyed this book as much as the first. Unlike the second book in the series, I actually had no clue as to what would happen in the end (I kinda guessed who the villain was in the second book). I am looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

This book fullfilled the following challenges:
Paranormal 999 Challenge: Vampires
A to Z Reading Challenge: Y

Contests- February 20, 2009

Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf is holding a contest to win a copy of The September Sisters by Jillian Cantor. The contest ends on March 13.

The Book Faery Reviews is giving away a copy of White Witch, Black Curse by Kim Harrison. Head on over before February 24 to enter.

Four Foods on Friday- February 20, 2009

Here are this week’s four questions.
Let’s talk about salty snacks.
#1. Potato chips. Flavored? Regular, ridged or stacked?I love potato chips! I guess if I had to pic my absolute favorite, it would be Cool Ranch Doritos
#2. Cheese doodles. Yellow or white? Puffed or crunchy? Definitely orange, and I prefer puffed
#3. Pretzels? Your favorite shape? Favorite flavor? Not too much of a pretzel fan, but I would rather eat sticks if I had to.
#4. Share a recipe for salsa or dip.

1) 1 pound ground beef
2) ½ pound Mexican Velveeta cheese, cubed
3) 2/3 cup Miracle Whip
4) ¼ cup onion, chopped
5) Corn Chips
Season to taste and brown meat; drain. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Spoon mixture on 9-inch pie plate. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Stir and continue to bake 5 minutes longer. Serve with corn chips.

Friday Fill-In- February 20, 2009

1. Give me any flavor of popcorn and I'll eat it!
2. Whenever I read, I have to eat popcorn (weird, I know).
3. I wish it was summer break already!
4. A chocolate frosted vanilla cupcake was the last thing I ate that was utterly delicious.
5. To live in this world one must have good friends.
6. Other than this one, Janel's Jumble is the last blog I commented on.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to having my boyfriend cook dinner for us, tomorrow my plans include going to see Slumdog Millionaire and having dinner at Fridays and Sunday, I want to relax!

Friday Finds- February 20, 2009

Here are my finds for the week:

Delicate Edible Birds- Lauren Groff

3 Willows: The Sisterhood Grows- Ann Brashares

The Hunger Games- Suzanne Collins

Promise Not To Tell-Jennifer Mcmahon

Mating Rituals of the North American Wasp- Lauren Lipton

Strange Brew- Charlaine Harris, Jim Butcher, Patricia Briggs

For Couples Only- Shaunti Feldhahn

Cracked Up To Be- Coutney Summers

Need- Carrie Jones

Note to Self- Andrea Buchanan