Saturday, June 4, 2011

This Book Room

This was a big week for me in reading (possibly because I was sick all week and read a LOT)! Let's get started.

First up, I finished the Complete Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn. If you are looking for new ways to save money, read this book. Since the gazette was printed in the 1990s, some of the information is outdated. One reader tip was that we should email instead of send letters since email is quicker (uh, DUH!). But back in the day, that probably was a really good tip and email was not the norm.

I personally have found new ways to save money because of this book. Please check out my Saving the Moola post on a price book - this has saved us a ton of money already on our grocery bill. We've challenged ourselves to $70 a week (which Amy would say is a lot for 2 people), but it's difficult because we prefer organic and buy that as much as possible. So far, we're doing good with it, though.
If you have kids, this book is a must read. I didn't pay as much attention to these tips as I do not have kids, but there are a lot of good tips.

Also, Amy shared some really unique recipes that I had never seen before. I have a recipe/how-to for making whole-wheat crackers (I didn't even know you could make crackers from scratch!!!), a cheese ball recipe, and a hot chocolate recipe (using powdered milk).

Amy also shared tips on saving on car insurance. Since we don't drive often (about 200 miles a week total between Jason and I), we will be able to save on that. Check with your car insurance provider to see what steps you need to take to get a low-mileage discount. We will have to install a Snapshot device in our car (device provided free from Progressive) and drive with it so it records how often we're driving.

Next up are my fiction books I read this week. I was dubious of Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda because I tend to not like books that have plots set in different countries - don't ask me why because I don't know. I just don't resonate with them. I guess I'm too American. But, I really liked this book. It was really interesting, and I learned a lot. I even wikipediaed India afterward to learn more about the country. If you have a soft spot for adopted kids or for kids who come from countries who don't value children, read this book. It was englightening beyond what I had already knew (that a lot of countries do not favor girls - to the point of killing them as soon as they are born).

I was so excited when I saw Rachel Herron was continuing her Cypress Hollow series. If you love to knit or read about knitting, this book is definitely for you. Her first book is How to Knit a Love Song, and the second book, which I read this week, is How to Knit a Heart Back Home. Her third book in the series, Wishes and Stitches, will be released later this year. This series is a bit smutty, but not too much (thank goodness), but I really really like this series. I liked the first one a bit better, only because it really sets the scene for the second book, and I presume, the third book.

I was (keyword: was) so excited when I first read the synopsis for Man in the Woods by Scott Spencer. I enjoy thriller, suspense-type books (love Mary Higgins Clark!). But this book was a huge disappointment. First, it was just boring. It was not intriguing at all. A man goes into the woods to relax, basically, then finds a man kicking a dog. A fight ensues, and the man who was kicking a dog dies (rightfully so, might I add - you kick a dog, you should die). Spoiler alert: the man who kills him is never found out, but I didn't even really care. The whole story was boring. Man kills man, first man is horrified at what he did, and blah blah blah. Don't read this book. Or if you do, tell me if you thought it was as boring as I thought it was.

I first heard of Megan Hart's book, Precious and Fragile Things, through I love this website - if you can join, find me and we can be friends! I was a little freaked out when I saw she typically writes erotica.... but rest assured, this is not an erotica book. It is a thriller-ish book, and I really liked it and hated it at the same time - which really is what any good book makes you feel. I think this book would be perfect for a January read.

Last night, I finished Choker by Elizabeth Woods. This is technically a young adult book, but the storyline was a bit mature, I thought. I don't want to say too much for fear of giving away the ending, but this book was really really good and perfect for our generation. A girl is bullied at school, and her best friend returns but is hiding out at her house. Two girls that bullied the first girl end up dead, and at first, they're thought to have drowned and commited suicide. Until it looks like someone killed them... who is the murderer? It will surprise you!

Because I read so many books this week and wanted to share them with you, Jason is taking this week off from This Book Room, but he wanted to share that he is still continuing the Southern Vampire series and looks forward to sharing with you all next week!

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