One Down, Three to Go

I won’t lie, 2010 has been my best reading year so far in terms of numbers; I’ve read 74 books since January 1st, for a total of 18,979 pages.

As far as quality of books though, well, it has left something to be desired. Who knew so many terrible books could find a publisher? 

  • Willow by Julia Hoban
  • Despite the topic (teenage cutting; ick), I stayed up late into the night reading this.

  • Trudy by Jessica Lee Anderson
  • Sweet; made me not want to have kids when I’m in my fifties.

  • The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me by Roald Dahl
  • A new Roald Dahl for me. Not my favorite. Why do my book reviews make me sound like an animal hater?

  • The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World by E. L. Konigsburg
  • Loved “The View from Saturday.” Most everything else by her has left me cold.

  • The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey
  • Dave Ramsey is an excellent narrator.

  • How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford
  • I am not cool enough for this book. I don’t want fake, non-romance. 

  • Alvin Ho: Allergic to Girls, School, and Other Scary Things by Lenore Look
  • I think it was trying to be Diary of a Wimpy Kid/Judy Moody. Didn’t quite make it. Longest two CDs of my life.

  • Here Lies the Librarian by Richard Peck
  • Richard Peck, you need Grandma Dowdel. 

  • Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern
  • Far better than I’d expected. Funny and quite sweet. Also I sort of now understand Dungeons and Dragons. Sort of.

  • Lost and Found by Andrew Clements
  • As a kid who dreamed of having a twin, this book totally spoke to my soul.

  • Something Like Fate by Susane Colasanti
  • I hate to say it, but every book of hers is less appealing to me than the last.

  • The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
  • Read it in a day. Glad it was over.

  • Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles
  • Not nearly as good as the first book. Which was total teen romance to begin with, so it’s not like the bar was all that high.

  • For Keeps by Natasha Friend
  • Helloooooo, Gilmore Girls. Without the awesome.

  • It’s Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han
  • Another disappointing sequel. Why? Why must you torture me?

  • Flush by Carl Hiaasen
  • Oh, did you have an agenda, sir? I never would have noticed (except for every other sentence).

  • Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
  • A hugely-hyped book, it took me a good 300 pages to stop despising every character. That’s a hard sell, friends.

  • A Crooked Kind of Perfect by Linda Urban
  • Cute-ish, but slow.

  • Tangled by Carolyn Mackler
  • Blah. Have tried to put this book out of my mind. I have read all of her books and liked exactly one.

  • Frankly, Frannie by A. J. Stern
  • Great for the Judy Moody crowd.

  • The Get Rich Quick Club by Dan Gutman
  • Annoying narrator, irritating ending.

  • The Sixty-Eight Rooms by Marianne Malone
  • GREAT premise, kind of a flat delivery of that premise.

  • The Beautiful Between by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
  • The first decent book I read from ALA. I am staggered by how many lousy books there were.

  • The Mark by Jen Nadol
  • When I went back to my list of books for the year, I couldn’t even remember what this book was about. So yeah, not that good.

  • The Wild Wild West by Geronimo Stilton
  • Meh.

  • The Strange Case of Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger
  • Very funny. My Diary of a Wimpy Kid fans (which is basically every kid at both my schools) will love this.

  • Gimme a Call by Sarah Mlynowski
  • Fast and amusing.

  • The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg
  • This book has got huge publicity behind it. I think it will do well, even though I didn’t really love it.

  • Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary “Jacky” Faber, Ship’s Boy by L.A. Meyer
  • Great audio. Don’t think there is any way I’ll make it through all eight books, though.

  • Boys, Girls, and Other Hazardous Materials by Rosalind Wiseman
  • It seems kind of tacky to have your characters watching a movie version of one of your other books. Or am I too sensitive?

  • Jekel Loves Hyde by Beth Fantaskey
  • Such a nice premise. Kind of a slow production of it, though.

  • Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
  • So much better than I expected.

  • The Secret to Lying by Todd Mitchell
  • Probably wouldn’t have finished this if it hadn’t been the only book I had on the airplane.

  • Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Blew Shiver out of the water. Desperate for the next book. . . 

  • Zen and the Art of Faking It by Jordan Sonnenblick
  • Laugh, sob, repeat. Bart and I both loved it.

  • January (Conspiracy 365) by Gabrielle Lord
  • I expected to hate this book. Then I went and requested the next two. So I guess I liked it.

  • Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
  • Twilight meets Harry Potter. Not in a really great way.

  • Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
  • Glad to finally have read this. I deserve a gold star or something.

  • The Unlikely Romance of Kate Bjorkman by Louise Plummer
  • I like my romance a little more romance-y than this, I think.

  • There’s A Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom by Louis Sachar
  • How had I never read this before? I am ashamed.

  • The Rag and Bone Shop by Robert Cormier
  • This man can write. The Chocolate War was better, though, even if it was a little grungier.

  • Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
  • I can’t decide if I enjoyed or hated this book. A little of both, I guess (hint: pick the guy who is alive).

  • Lunch Money by Andrew Clements
  • Probably done with Andrew Clements for a while.

  • The Year of the Dog by Grace Lin
  • Meeeeeeh. 

  • Three Quarters Dead by Richard Peck
  • This book was downright terrible. And I was probably harder on it than I might have been because I expect big things from Richard Peck.

  • Well Witched by Francis Hardinge
  • On the edge of being really terrific. Didn’t quite make it there, though.

  • The Eternal Ones by Kristen Miller
  • This was a YA romance that felt like WORK. And I don’t like my YA romances to feel like that.

  • What Dreams May Come by Richard Matheson
  • Dear Kayla. I’m sorry I didn’t like this book. Can we still be friends?

    • The Hole We’re In by Gabrielle Zevin
    • You definitely should read this if you want to hate everyone and everything in it.

    • Conspiracy 365: February by Gabrielle Lord
    • Fine. Probably won’t read the rest of the series.

    • How it Ends by Lauren Wiess
    • Holy crap, this book depressed me. 

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      • Reply Heather March 31, 2010 at 1:26 pm

        The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle. The flagon with the dragon has the brew that is true.

        Love these book reviews – thank you for doing them!

      • Reply Kelly J. March 31, 2010 at 1:26 pm

        Your reviews crack me up.
        72! I bow in envy. I'm not sure my numbers yet.

      • Reply Peaceful Reader March 31, 2010 at 1:45 pm

        This is such a great, quick synopsis-helps me hone down my own reading list. Way to go on having the best reading year ever!

      • Reply Shelly March 31, 2010 at 2:09 pm

        Your reviews are so cute. And I know what you mean, sometimes I get on streaks of really bad books. I usually look for something from an author I LOVE to break the streak.

      • Reply Bart March 31, 2010 at 2:11 pm

        Someone might read this post and think you just sit around and read all day. If you weren't ultra productive in all other areas of our lives to boot, I might think the same, except I honestly don't know when you get the time to read so much, nor do I feel like you ever put reading before me.

        Either I work too much, or you're amazing. Or both.

      • Reply Life of a Doctor's Wife March 31, 2010 at 2:20 pm

        Wow – you are such an avid reader! Love your mini reviews. 🙂

        E. L. Konigsburg – did you not enjoy Mixed Up Files either? That's one of my childhood faves… Maybe it doesn't translate well to adults? I'm afraid to reread it lest I ruin my memories of it!

        Louis Sachar – Love.

        Lois Lowry – Love.

        Robert Cormier – LOVE.

      • Reply Tina's Blog March 31, 2010 at 2:38 pm

        I thought my 63 books was doing well! 72?! I am jealous! I love reading your lists – just short and sweet and to the point.

      • Reply Packrat March 31, 2010 at 2:40 pm

        Sorry, I quit reading about half-way down. Not that I wanted to, I just have to get busy. Two things popped out: Not being condescending, but I think the Richard Peck book is one a much older person would enjoy. As to 45 pounds of flour – always have at least that much on hand (well stocked pantry!)

      • Reply Jaclyn March 31, 2010 at 3:08 pm

        Love the quick summations– 100% with you on "3 Cups of Tea" –Happy reading!

      • Reply melissa @ 1lbr March 31, 2010 at 4:13 pm

        I wish I could sum up my thoughts in one sentence! I loved these.

      • Reply Sammy March 31, 2010 at 4:37 pm

        I left this post on one side of my screen and my library request form on the other. Thank you for adding another 10+ books to my hold list! And Life as We Knew It made me start filling up extra 2 liters full of water.

      • Reply Angiegirl March 31, 2010 at 4:53 pm

        Out of curiosity, which Mackler was it you liked?

      • Reply emandtrev March 31, 2010 at 5:53 pm

        Go you! I am going to look this up the next time I need another stack of books to reserve at the library.

      • Reply Katie Rich March 31, 2010 at 6:18 pm

        Oh wow. That is impressive.

      • Reply Ronnica March 31, 2010 at 8:11 pm

        Definitely agree on 3 Cups of Tea!

        I'm with you for my first quarter reading. Read more than I've ever had, but not that many standouts. The Help, sure, but that's on everyone's list (rightfully so!).

      • Reply Elizabeth April 1, 2010 at 12:51 am

        Erik would like you to know that 45 pounds of flour is not NEARLY enough.

      • Reply hollyhs April 2, 2010 at 8:13 am

        yay! i LOVE these reviews that you do! they always help me pick a few books for my reading list. i think i'm going with green glass sea and birthmarked this time. both sound right up my ally. i read outliers because of you and i really really enjoyed it. now my dad is reading it. and i so envy you…i want Linger bad! 🙂

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