Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Sleeping Beauty Proposal by Sarah Strohmeyer

I loved this book. It is totally unrealistic and if it happened in the real world I am sure things would go very differently, but it was a great story. Genie, the main character, has been dating her boyfriend Hugh for over 4 years. Being in her mid-thirties she has been waiting for him to pop the question for a while. Hugh has just wrote a NY Times bestseller with a very romantic plot line. While on his book tour he does a TV interview. As Genie is watching the interview, the interviewer asks Hugh about his own love life and this prompts him to give the most romantic on-air proposal ever. When Genie finally gets a hold of Hugh on the phone he explains that the proposal was not meant for her!

Genie is flabbergasted and everyone they know thinks the proposal was meant for her. So following the advice of her best friend, Genie goes along with it.

"You remind me of that idiot Sleeping Beauty, lying around like a zombie waiting for your prince. Well, guess what, he rode right past your castle and now you have a choice — you can either go back to bed or you can wake up!"

(I don’t really get how faking her engagement is “waking up” but whatever)

Hugh is over in England continuing his book tour, so he is not there to dispute it.

Genie plays the role of bride-to-be with her family, friend, and co-workers. She lets them start planning showers and the actual wedding. She even goes as far as buying a fake engagement ring. She feels like this is all Hugh’s fault anyway, so let him explain the mistake to everyone. It all makes for an entertaining story.

From the author’s website:
“Genie realizes that she never needed a man to start her life — to buy a home, to get a better job, or even to wear a diamond ring. And if Prince Charming wants to show up while she's at it, she just might teach him a thing or two.”

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars!

Check out the author's website here.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

I didn’t know what to expect with this book. I knew that it had won some awards and I had heard good things about it, but I didn’t really know what it was about or why it was so great.

It is basically the story of a young guy named “Pi”. His father is a zookeeper in India and eventually they sell the zoo and a lot of the animals. They take a large ship transporting some of the animals when the ship sinks and Pi finds himself as the only human survivor in a life boat with a hyena, zebra, orangutan, and a 450 lb. tiger. Sounds unbelievable right? Well, that is kind of the point. I think the whole point of the book is faith. I mean when someone tells you a story you have to have faith that it is true because if they were the only ones there to experience it, you will never know for sure.

Really the way he writes the story does not make it seem unbeileable at all. He tells it in such a matter of fact way. It is just like someone recounting exactly what they experienced without embellishing it to make it sound better or worse than it was. Just like “here is what happened, and then this happened…etc.” But with enough detail to make it believable and interesting.

The first part of the book was kind of slow for me. But as soon as he found himself ship wrecked, things picked up. The majority of the book chronicles his 227 days trying to survive at sea with a tiger in his boat. It is a great adventure story and the lengths at which he went to survive and the surprising coincidences that saved his life multiple times are astonishing. He has to tame the tiger in order to survive and provide him with fresh water in food the whole time so the tiger won’t kill him. All this while trying to keep himself well-fed and hydrated. Some of the highlights are an epic battle between a tiger and a shark, finding a meerkat infested floating algae island, a brief period of blindness where they randomly run in to another blind castaway, and the many fishing adventures.

Once I go into it I couldn’t put it down.

The only parts that were hard for me to read were the gruesome detail about the hyena slowing killing the zebra and the parts in the beginning where he becomes a faithful Hindu, Christian, and Muslim all at the same time. That is impossible. You might could get away with following the religious traditions of each faithfully at the same time, but there is no way all 3 can coexist if you accept and really believe the teachings of each.

But it is unlike anything I have ever read and was very entertaining.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Through Thick and Thin by Alison Pace

This book has been on my bookshelf for a while. I had nnever read anything by this author, but it sounded like the perfect chick lit book. Struggles of losing weight and getting a dog...sounded like a great read to me.

The story is about Meredith, who is a young, single girl living in NYC. She is the critic for The NY magazine and gets to take friends along to try out all of New York's hip, cool new resturants. Meredith's sister Stephanie seems to have the prefect suburban life. She's got a husband cut straigh out of a J Crew catalog, a new baby girl, and lots of new mommy friends and activities.

As a way to stay connected, the sisters decide to go on a diet together. They try everything from The Zone to Atkins to Weight Watchers. Each has their own successes and struggles with each diet.

Meredith seems to have a much harder time sticking to it seeing how she gets paid to review great food. And Stephanie discovers a damaging secret about her seemingly perfect husband that causes her to loose focus for a while too.

Meredith gets a new dog and falls in love with him and discovers Doga- which is doggie and people yoga.

It was filled with lots of little interesting plot lines, but nothing deep at all. I like reading mindless chick lit sometimes, but at the end of this book I kind of felt like I had just wasted my time. I really didn't take anything away from it. I didn't care too much to know what happened to the characters after it ended. And everything in the book just really felt...well...forgettable.

The book isn't bad, and really I am just one opinion, but I would say don't waste your time with this one.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars.
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