My Own Little Book Corner

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Free Books for Kids!

Vote here for the state of Louisiana and our children could receive 50,000 new books to read! You can only vote once a day, but you can vote everyday until the end of the contest on July 31st. Please help put Louisiana in the #1 spot!


Saturday, July 14, 2007

Cheap Books

Check out Paperback Swap. This is a place to get rid of books you no longer want, and to get some new ones to read. Condensed version - you sign up and post 9 books. You then recieve 3 credits that can be used to order 3 books. (Each book is 1 credit whether paperback or hard cover. The exception - books on tape are 2 credits.) Your books are listed and can be ordered by others. Your cost is in mailing books that others order. These are sent Media Mail and most books cost $2.13 to send. When the person you sent a book to recieves it, you recieve a credit and the cycle continues.

If you sign up, use me as a reference (jantalk). If you do, I will recieve a credit, which I will return to you. So, you can get 4 credits to start your trading.

Be warned - this is an addictive site and you may find yourself at the post office more than ususal,, but it's well worth it.

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Thursday, July 5, 2007

Summer Reading Programs

Summer was always a season of reading for me growing up. Those were the days that Jackie and I could go to the library, browse, get our books and then take them home and read. Now there are reading incentive programs to encourage summer reading. Most libraries have them and a few bookstores. (If you have children in grades 1 - 6, check out the program at Barnes & Noble. For reading any 8 books and keeping a brief journal, your child can get a free book. Not a bad deal. )

Of course the library programs are always good too. I'm participating in the one with the East Baton Rouge Parish Library. They made it easy for adults - read 3 books, record them with a brief summary and turn it in for prizes. The prizes that made me sign up were a $5 certificate for the Recycled Reads sale and a cookie on a stick from Cookies by Design. If they had only had a coupon for CC's it would have been perfect - a book, a cookie and a cup of coffee. What more do you need?!


Tuesday, July 3, 2007

June Book Reviews

Here's the latest book reviews (trying to keep it short and sweet):

"The Goodbye Summer" by Patricia Gaffney

This is the story of a few months in the life of Cadie Winger. These months find her living alone for the first time in her 32 years of life as her grandmother moved into Wake House, a place that those who do not need intensive medical care, just a little help, can go and live together. Caddie quickly makes friends with the residents, visiting them and helping them to record their biographies among other things. There's more than one goodbye in the story, but the main goodbye is Caddie’s goodbye to her old self.

4 stars

"The Virgin's Lover" by Philippa Gregory

The follow up book to “The Queen’s Fool” this chronicles the time in England when Elizabeth became queen. A tale of politics and love as Elizabeth and Robert Dudley become close companions in both areas. Those around them see the pitfalls – the largest being that Dudley is married and that he is a Dudley – one of the most ambitious families in the kingdom. Another well written interesting historical novel from Gregory.

5 stars

"Mostly True - A Memoir of Family, Food, and Baseball" by Molly O'Neill

The story of the Molly O’Neill – oldest child and only daughter in the baseball O’Neill family. (Paul O’Neill is her youngest brother) I enjoyed reading about her growing up years (how could it not be interesting growing up with 4 brothers!) – her adult years as she developed in the food industry was not as interesting to me. It is a nice story about a close family.

4 stars

"Savannah from Savannah" by Denise Hildreth

Gotta love this southern girl who has a mind of her own. Savannah is tired of her mom – the former Miss Georgia United States of America – using her influence to make sure that Savannah always gets what she wants. She decides it’s time to step up and thwart her mom’s plans. Savannah takes matters into her own hands and is hired as a human interest story writer for the Savannah paper. Her first story is about – what else – but beauty pageants. Savannah learns that things aren’t always what they appear to be and that you always need to consider whose life you may affect with your words.

4 stars

"End of the Spear" by Steve Saint

True story of faith and courage. Steve’s dad was in a company of 5 Christian men who were reaching out to the Waodani tribe in the Amazon when they were speared and killed by these same people. Steve and his family then ended up living with these people as they found the trail of God. Through all kinds of trials, their love for each other and God continues to grow and be a great example to all.

5 stars

"The Truth War" by John MacArthur

This is a book that encourages us to stand up for the truth and to not bow to the pressures of the world to be PC or post-mod. He uses the book of Jude as a basis. Well written and convicting at times and at times a little "over my head."

4 stars

"The Grace that keeps this World" by Tom Bailey

This book drew me in. and left me with tears. Story of a few days in the life of the Hazen family at deer season time. An important time for storing food for the family, but also a time that finds the Hazen boys with different things on their minds. It is a story about the conflicts, love and resolutions within the family. Very well written and very believable.

5 stars

"But Inside I'm Screaming" by Elizabeth Flock

Tale of a woman’s recovery from a very public breakdown. Isabel breaks down on TV while reporting on Princess Di’s death. She ends up at Three Rivers to recover. This is her story of time in the hospital. An interesting story full of interesting characters. Untimely the story of Isabel's recovery and will to survive.

5 stars

"Love, Rosie" by Cecelia Ahern

Delightful story of a friendship that spans the years. Rosie and Alex grow up as close friends. His family moves from Ireland to Boston their last year of HS, but through the years they remain best friends. This is told through letters, e-mails, IM’s, etc. Very interesting way to tell a story and a fun book to read.

5 stars

"Crusader's Cross" by James Lee Burke

Another Dave Robicheaux tale. I enjoyed the book, but in ways it reminded of the last one of his I read. Another rich, corrupt family that Dave brings to their knees. I find it interesting that Dave got married again and wonder where that story line will go.

4 stars

"Almost Innocent" by Sheila Bosworth

Family story as told and remembered by their daughter Clay-Lee. Her parents, Rand and Constance were much in love, but circumstances and time affected their lives, as it does to us all. The choices made adds to the layers of the story and by the end of the story, all have borne guilt, but all are almost innocent.

5 stars

"Reversible Errors" by Scott Turow

While this story covers a death row inmates appeal, it is also rich in character development of the players involved. There were some twists and turns in the story as far as whether the right man was charged with the crime which kept it interesting. I found it to be a little predictable at times when it came to the development of relationships, but I enjoy Turow's books and this one did not disappoint.

5 stars

"A Patchwork Planet" by Anne Tyler

It’s been a while since I read an Anne Tyler book. She has a way of making her characters so true to life. In this story Barnaby is a man that I feel like I know. He has a good heart, but he can’t see that. Family relationships and romantic relationships, he dooms – but if he’d just get our of his own way, he’d find a wonderful life. What I think of as an "everyday" story. No spectacular occurrences, just life as it happens.

5 stars

"Gardenias for Breakfast" by Robin Jones Gunn

This is a story about a mother and daughter traveling the country and re-connecting with family. The main goal for the mother is to reach Louisiana where her daughter can come to know the Grand Lady (the mom's grandmother) The main story line is abut relationships between the women and what we do or don't do that effects relationships for a long time. I was disappointed in this book. I found it to be an average read that was a little shallow in character development. There were also things that just seemed to be thrown in there and at times it was like a chamber of commerce brochure. Even for a summer read - just not deep enough in development to me.

3 stars