This site is basically targeting all of you book lovers out there who may be in the process of looking for a great book to read! I have a lot of things to say, so sit back and enjoy a quick peek inside some amazing works of art. This site is also for authors. if you would like to have your book considered for review, please email me at ashley.denis@maine.edu <3 Ashley

Saturday, March 8, 2008

The Penguin Who Knew Too Much

Well this is a first. I don't think I have ever done a review on a book that I totally and 100% hated. The novel The Penguin Who Knew Too Much by Donna Andrews was horrible! It is supposed to be a comical mystery novel. It's not. I swear. It's sloppy and overbearing with details and just a mess.

This author has writing talent. She has written many books and won tons of awards, but I think she missed the boat with this one. She is up for some kind of award and I'm curious to see if she wins it. God I hope not.

My full review of this book is at www.frontstreetreviews.com if you are interested in my full thoughts on this. Here is a brief synopsis of what my review discussed:

Meg langslow is the main character. Her and her beau are moving into a new house together and her parents and an untold amount of relatives are helping her move in. Then bam. All of a sudden she finds penguins in her basement, llamas in her yard, hyenas, wolves, monkeys. Her father is to blame for some of this. For the next 50+ pages Donna Andrews goes on to explain these animals in the most boring detail. Within those pages you find out that there was a murder and it was the zoo keeper.
The police are called and they start to invetisgate. All the while Meg is still moving into her place the animal population is growing. She starts to investigate this murder herself because apparently the sheriff is too stupid.
on and on it goes, with non stop obsessive descriptions of the animals and then we get to the end. in the end Meg finds the killer and in the process she breaks her leg, falls in a trench, gets clawed by a bob cat and is about to be shot. Now I ask you this question: what is the appropriate emotion that Meg should display? If you said Fear, Sadness, anxiety, dread, then by golly you are right!!! Unfortunatley Donna Andrews is a little off the mark and gets the wrong answer. She has Meg become cynical and has her start to joke around and make small talk. tsk tsk.
To me, when I am reading a mystery novel, the climax is obviously when you finally piece everything together and find out who did the killing. It should be the main event of the book. In here it wasn't. In just a few short pages you find out who did it, meg breaks her leg and acts inappropriatley and that's it. Very disappointing.

My biggest peeve was not knowing her target audience. For half the book I would have sworn it was for young teens because of the light nature of the book, not gorey, lots about animals and very simple writing. Well then there starts to be mention of viagra and sex and a few other sexual inuendos that are not appropriate for the teen population. So then I started to think maybe this was meant for adults. I never formed a solid opinion because it is so unclear.

*deep breath* okay that was basically a second review to the review I already did..but you should check out my review at front street because I find even more things to complain about. I really hate picking on authors because they work so hard, but I have to be truthful. I'm sure Donna Andrews is a great writer, otherwise she wouldn't have won so many awards, but damn, she didn't win any points with me when it came to this book.

Have any of you out there read any of her other books? how are those?

Monday, March 3, 2008

The Winter Rose

Hey all! it's been a while since I've posted in here...but I have a good excuse! I've been reading this book, called The Winter Rose, by Jennifer Donnelly and IT IS AMAZING. It is over 700 pages and I thought it ended too soon!
I'm not going to be posting my actual reviews on here anymore because I want you all to visit http://www.frontstreetreviews.com/, which is where all my reviews get posted anyways. It is a great site with amazing writers that do reviews of all sorts!!
So what I will continue to do on here is to post blurbs about the books i read...the good and the not so good.
Back to my praising of The Winter Rose...amazing, wonderful, entertaining, heart wrenching. Have you ever picked up a good book and transported yourself into their world and any real life interruptions are just annoying (like having to actually go to work, eat dinner, have conversations with real people). haha. That was one of these books. the characters came alive for me...and no, I'm not completley losing my mind..the book was just THAT good. :-)
It's based in the 1900's and has a bunch of small stories in it that end up interconnecting. all of the characters are related in exciting ways.
I realize I really havn't given much of a synopsis of the book, but if you go to that wonderful web site i listed above, you'll be able to read my review of it! and if you reallly really like the sound of it, the authors web site is linked on the page my review is on so that you can see what else she has written.

let me know if I've convinced you to go out and read it!!! I'd love to see how you liked it!

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