Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

“I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some sort of secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers.”

This book blog has been sorely neglected! I have actually been reading quite a bit, but just haven't taken the time to post anything. I was at Barnes & Noble last month and they had the table set up with the "Buy 2 get 1 Free" promo, so I bought three books on a whim. The Friday Night Knitting Club, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and the book I just read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. I picked it up because of the funny name. I then went to the Relief Society Book Club meeting, and discovered that it was the book for the next meeting. Lastly, I checked out Stephenie Meyer's website to see if she was writing anything new and she had a post recommending this book. So I guess the universe was telling me I should read this book and I'm glad I did!

I loved this book!! It is written as a collection of letters (oh why oh why don't we write letters anymore?? does anyone want to be pen pals?) between the main character Juliet Ashton and the members of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Guernsey is one of the Channel Islands and the book is set right after World War II. The characters and their stories about founding the literary society and surviving the occupation of the Channel Islands are humorous and heart breaking. The letter format was good, but it did leave me wanting more. Oh Juliet, Kit, Dawsey, Isola, how did your lives turn out . . . Juliet was right the story doesn't end when the hero and heroine are safely engaged! I don't want to give away too much, so if you want a more in depth description or info on the author's you can go to the B&N website.

John has been hoping that his work will open up the opportunity to work in the UK again, and after reading this book I have the same hope! Then I might be able to visit Guernsey!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Ok, I don't know if that many people actually read this blog, or would be interested in this book for that matter (it's slightly controversial), but I thought it would be fun to do a giveaway!

I bought a digital copy of the audiobook "The Golden Compass" by Philip Pullman and I burned a copy to CD for my brother. He was taking a long road trip and I thought it might entertain him. I don't think he ever listened to it and he gave it back to me the other day. I already have it on my iPod, so I have this extra copy on CD to give away.

I loved the "His Dark Materials" Trilogy (The Golden Compass; The Subtle Knife; The Amber Spyglass). I love a good story and this is a fantastic story with awesome characters! My favorite of the series is "The Subtle Knife". The audiobook is also amazing! One of the best that I've listened to in fact. It actually has a cast of characters reading and not just one person, which helps distinguish the characters and makes the crazy worlds in the story come alive.

Here is the amazon description of the trilogy:
In the epic trilogy His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman unlocks the door to worlds parallel to our own. Dæmons and winged creatures live side by side with humans, and a mysterious entity called Dust just might have the power to unite the universes--if it isn't destroyed first. Join Lyra, Pantalaimon, Will, and the rest as they embark on the most breathtaking, heartbreaking adventure of their lives. The fate of the universe is in their hands.

I read this blog entry by Sheri Lynch a long time ago and she describes so perfectly in a way that I could never articulate how I feel about reading (hence this crazy long run-on sentence) and she also talks about "His Dark Materials" - post link

Ok, ok, enough rambling, back to the giveaway! Here are some quotes from a few books I have read in recent months. The first person to correctly identify the title, author, and character the quotes are from wins! You will really impress me if you can do it without Google!!

Oh, someone please participate, so I don't feel lame! :)


  1. "The boy never cried again, and he never forgot what he'd learned: that to love is to destroy, and that to be loved is to be the one destroyed."

  2. "I am going to love this boy more than the girl but I mustn't ever let her know. It is wrong to love one child more than the other but this is something that I cannot help."

  3. "If you have a sister and she dies, do you stop saying you have one? Or are you always a sister, even when the other half of the equation is gone?"

  4. "I bit a pillow. Or two."

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Host is headed for the Big Screen

They are going to make Stephenie Meyer's The Host into a movie, yay!! I'm excited to see who will be cast and I wonder how long it will take them to make it. It's being directed by the director of Gattaca and I really liked that movie, so it should be good!

Article about the movie

Thursday, May 21, 2009

What's everyone reading??

Good job Nick for posting the last book review, you've probably read the most books this year out of all of us. We've really neglected this blog, so I wanted to find out what people are reading.

John is still reading "Angels and Demons." He has about 80 pages left, but we went and saw the movie anyway. Pretty good! I have picked up "Breaking Dawn" again, remember I never finished it. I am going to read "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" next for the RS book club. "My Sister's Keeper" is next and then I was thinking about trying one of the historical fiction books that Nick likes so much. I was also thinking about reading the "Kite Runner". We were supposed to read it for book club last month, but I never did.

So, whatcha reading, or planning on reading??

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Rising Tide - I gained a new fascination...

My last fasination that I have developed was from reading the historical fication books about Caeasar and Brutus (Julius and Marcus). I was amazed at the the ambition that Caesar had in these books and how far he made it in such a short time. I compared what I read about to the actual facts and I felt satisfied that the books were close to enough to give respect to someone who deserved it. This book, the Rising Tide has done the same thing. The book is about WWII and the prominent characters are Ike Eisenhower, George Patton, Montgomery, Rommel, FDR, and Winston Churchill. And then you have your other characters who could either be made up or lower rank soldiers who fought and sometimes died in WWII. The focus of the book was always on the leadership of these main characters/heros/enemy/etc. The fascination that I now have is on Erwin Rommel. Before this book I have never heard of him although I have come to find out that he is quite famous for his leadership ability and tactical brilliance, much like Caesar. The only problem he had was that he was not Hitler. Hitler had the final say so in what happened on the battlefield. Sometimes Hitler listened to the demands Rommel said were necessary to be met if they were to win certain battles. The fight starts of in the desert of North Africa. Rommel is kicking everyones butts and could've continued if not for the fact that people simply didn't like his arrogance and toughness. He always seemed to know the exact thing that needed to be done. Thankfully he was not listened to. He kept off the allied forces with beat down tank battalions, barely enough food, water and fuel, and quite a bit less troops. Now the book portrayed him as someone who could not stand those in Berlin, including Hitler. So it helps you continue to have respect for him. He simply was a genius. A tough, arrogant, genius.

Now onto the Allied Forces. Certain chapters were dedicated to described the experiences Eisenhower had leading Great Britain and the US as they fought together. His weaknesses and his strengths were shown through certain chapters. Then you had Patton who was as people continue to describe him. Someone who did not respect authority but demanded respect himself. He may not be a genius but he was tough enough to get done anything that was asked of him. He just did it, no questions asked by himself or anyone he commanded. His rival was Montgomery. They had many similarities other than the fact Patton just went in to fight and Montgomery took his time, planned everything out many different times, then would fight, pull back, reasses, and then make some more plans, and then fight again. In the end they still would win. Just different ways to get there. Some of the cooler characters were the privates and majors and lieutenants included in some of the battles. The paratroopers being dropped in on Siciliy and the fight they had and the tanks rolling in on Italy, Siciliy and North Africa. The guys in this book, if describing real people, were heros. However, I know real guys are out there that did similar things that these guys did. Young leaders, 20, 24, 27, etc. that led men into battles and made decisions with mortars, bombs, bullets, tanks, etc. surrounding them. It was all amazing.

The thing that impressed me the most is that when the US entered the war, we were the least experienced in battle. Germany was rolling over everyone. They had experience, they had the machines, they had the weapons. Great Britain had more experience than us and they were responsible for quite a bit of the allies pulling out the victory in this war. But the US caught up quick. The guys gained their experience, they proved themselves, and they were the reason Hitler and his army lost.

A side note, only references were made towards what was going on out in the Pacific and with Japan. North Africa, Sicily, and then into Italy was all that was talked about. I need to find out if there's a volume II. I don't think there is but there should be.

My next book I'm going to read when it's released as a soft copy next month is Killing Rommel. I refuse to look up how he dies b/c I want to find out as I read "Killing Rommel". Like I said, the guy is amazing!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

These is My Words by Nancy Turner

I read this book for my church book club. Never mind that I was the only one, other than the host, to read the book! When I first started the book, I wasn't sure if I was going to like it because of the diary format and the grammar is pretty bad at the beginning, but it got better and the story was so interesting!

The book is a fictional diary of Sarah Agnes Prines, but it is based on the life of the author's great grandmother. It begins in 1881 when Sarah is 18 years old and her family is traveling in the Arizona Territories. There is plenty of action and drama throughout. It was amazing to read about how hard life was for those people establishing new territories. I loved Sarah and how strong she was and her desire to learn and educate herself. Along with all the action is a great love story between Sarah and an army captain named Jack Elliot that she meets. I loved Jack's character too and I loved reading all their adventures.

I'm really happy that this book was picked for the church book club, because I may have never read it otherwise. It was a great love story with plenty of adventure. I am only giving it a 4 out of 5 though because not everything was tied up with a pretty bow at the end. I gotta have my blissfully happy endings!

Monday, September 22, 2008


This book really is a murder and romantic mystery rolled into one novel. I did enjoy the story however I can not say that it is a masterpiece, like I heard this book being described. To me the plot moved slow and the pages were described with vivid descriptions that left confusing sentences. But the author is very effective in creating a plot of a classical murder/romantic tale. The characters to me are very complex which keeps a dark psychological twist causing tension throughout the story.

The plot starts with the young girl who is the narrator of the novel, which her name remains unknown throughout the entirety of the book. She is a companion to a wealthy lady where she meets in the dining room of a hotel, the rich widower Maxim de Winter a man who is twice her age. He is taking some time off after the apparent suicide of his wife. They fall in love and after a whirlwind romance, they get married.

After their honeymoon they return to Maxim's family estate, Manderley. She is all to soon faced with the burden of living there, the mansion that is haunted by the powerful presence of his first wife, Rebecca. This is where she finds it incapable of understanding her husband's past, especially as she gets no direct answers from him. She finds herself living in Rebecca's shadow and haunted by the mystery of the woman's death. She is and always will be the SECOND Mrs. DeWinter, something the sinister housekeeper, Ms. Danvers, will not let her forget. Through a series of disastrous events, the second Mrs. de Winters learns the truth about Rebecca's death.

Great! 4 out of 5