BookShelf

I am kind of a book nerd.  I collect old books, first editions, and I have worked in three different libraries.  I am not one of those elitist readers who claim to only read works of “substance.”  I’ve learned that while it is important to read books deemed to be works of literature, it’s also a good idea to just read for the love of reading’s sake.

In college, I’ve had a laundry list of required reading to  tackle.  While many of these books are ones I’ve always wanted to cross off my reading list, I am also one of those people who enjoys books so much more when I am not being forced to read any particular one.  This realization has actually inspired me to re-read some of the required novels and short stories because I am positive I’ll enjoy them in a whole new way outside of class.  So if you’re like me and couldn’t get into The Scarlet Letter or Heart of Darkness in high school, maybe give it another try as an adult who no longer fears passing AP English.

What I’ve Read Lately

Persuasion

I enjoyed this more than I expected at the beginning. I had no prior knowledge of the story line or the characters, as I did when I read her other books, and this made it difficult for me to get into it at first. I wouldn’t say I liked this anywhere near as much as I did Pride and Prejudice, but it was absolutely worth the read. Anne Elliot is an amazing female character, and I felt like she was as strong and intelligent as Elizabeth Bennett, if not more so. Gasp! I feel like that statement is almost blasphemous toward my love for Pride. Jane Austen hasn’t disappointed me yet, and I can’t wait to start another one of her novels.

My rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.

This was absolutely, positively not a book that I enjoyed. The beginning seemed alright, I suppose. I felt that the concept of the book was interesting — that love is something to be feared, and is the main cause of humanity’s suffering and demise. However, the author did a poor job of bringing this plot to life. While Oliver threw in some clever one-liners, it wasn’t enough to make up for the lack of substance. Lena’s character seemed exceptionally weak. Even towards the end of the book, I never felt that she came into her own. Instead, everything she accomplishes can be attributed to another character. I also thought the relationship between Lena and Alex was predictable and dull. I know a lot of people truly enjoyed this, but I am not one of them.

My rating:  2.5 out of 5 stars

Room is one of those books that is so intense and horrifying, I couldn’t put it down.  The book is written from a unique perspective — a little boy whose entire life has been spent in captivity, so to speak.  I’ve never read a book quite like it.

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

This is a non-fiction story of survival that took place during World War II, when a promising runner turned bombardier disappears over the Pacific ocean after his bomber crashes into the sea.  From spending day after day in a raft surrounded by sharks to being a prisoner of war, this book is both exciting and inspiring.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I have always been a fan of the A&E version of this book with Colin Firth.  For some reason, I put off reading this because I had seen the movie a bazillion times, and I thought there would be nothing left to draw from it.  I’m embarrassed by how incredibly wrong I was to make that assumption!  This book is easily one of my favorites.  I can’t say this about every book, but I would read this again in a heartbeat.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Yup, I’m that reader who is going to recommend this series of novels to just about anyone.  I know, I know.  A million screaming teenage girls are obsessed with this series.  Guess what?  I’m not a teenager, and I still love them.  Yes, they are an easy read.  No, they will never become classic literature.  Who cares?  This is a delicious dessert for your brain, but with a way better plot than Twilight (which I couldn’t get into).  I was on the edge of my seat throughout all three books.  I wasn’t as fond of book 3, but all in all I was happy to have read them.

My rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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