Saturday, March 24, 2012

This Book Room: a week of surprising reads

Shunned from the Plain life of her youth, Katie Lapp (now known as Katherine) delights in the modern world, yet she longs for the peace that reigned in her mother's heart. Though her life is far removed from Lancaster County, she must come to terms with her Amish heritage...and the man she once loved.

Additional notes: This is the third and final book in the Heritage of Lancaster county series. You can read my review of the first book here and the second book here.

My thoughts: I started out really enjoying this series, but this final book fell a bit flat for me. I don't know if it was the writing style or the character, but Katherine was a bit annoying.

Former University of Florida star quarterback, first round draft pick of the Denver Broncos, and devout Christian Tebow tells the story of his faith, his life, and football. The text will be the first look inside the mind of an athlete whose faith and ability have made him one of the most provocative figures in football.

My thoughts: First of all, I don't watch football. All I knew about Tim Tebow was that he was a follower of Jesus Christ. He loved God. I know a bit more about him now and found this book an easy read, except for the bits about football (ha!). I don't even know football, really, so the bits about plays and that were confusing for someone who knows nothing about football. And I'd just really like to say that for those who have named taking a knee "Tebowing" and criticizing others who do it - kneeling on one knee to pray has been around probably longer than Tim Tebow has ever lived. So if others are doing it, it's likely they're not just copying him. But even if they were, I think it's great that someone so publicly known is bringing others to Christ.

When Laura Schroff brushed by a young panhandler on a New York City corner one rainy afternoon, something made her stop and turn back. She took the boy to lunch at the McDonald's across the street that day. And she continued to go back, again and again for the next four years until both of their lives had changed dramatically. Nearly thirty years later, that young boy Maurice has gotten married and has his own children. Now he works to change the lives of disadvantaged kids, just like the boy he used to be.An Invisible Thread is the true story of the bond between a harried sales executive and an eleven-year-old boy who seemed destined for a life of poverty. It is the heartwarming story of a friendship that has spanned three decades and brought meaning to an over-scheduled professional and hope to a hungry and desperate boy living on the streets.

My thoughts: I didn't think I would like this book, but I could not have been more wrong. I loved it. It was a quick, easy read in terms of the writing style. I love that one moment in time can change the course of several lifetimes - and one moment in Laura's life resulted in life changes both for Maurice and Laura. I also love reading proof, once again, that blessing another means you yourself walk away blessed. You may start out ministering to another, but you walk away, realizing you were just blessed. Your life wouldn't have been as rich without that person you helped. I love it.

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, the shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before--and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

Additional notes: This is the first book in the Hunger Games series. The second and third books have already been released, and so far as I know, this series is finished.

My thoughts: Just like with An Invisible Thread, I did not think I would like this book, and again, I was very wrong. My coworkers convinced me to read this series, and I'm happy they did! The first book introduces us to extremely interesting characters, and Katniss is incredibly brave and resolved. She is inspiring to me in this first book. Rue was lovely. The ending left me a bit confused, as I thought all three books were about the one Hunger Games competition. Rest assured, the 74th Hunger Games competition is over by the end of this book.

After 25 years, Noelle and Eli Hueston are contemplating divorce. But then an accident erases part of Noelle's memory. Though her other injuries are minor, she doesn't remember Eli, their children, or the tragedy that has ripped their family apart.

Additional notes: This is the fifth novel of the Deep Haven series. You can read my review of the first book here, the second book here, the third book here and the fourth book here. So far as I know, this series is ongoing.

My thoughts: Susan has definitely taken a surprising turn with this fifth novel - the storyline is much more developed than those in the previous novels. But I have to say I wasn't in love with the characters. Noelle and Eli both annoyed me, as did Emma and Kyle. I don't know what it was, but I just didn't connect with these characters.


Amber said...

I'm so glad you're reading Hunger Games! I LOVED this series when I read it.

Jess and Jason said...

It really is so much better than I thought it would be! I love reading good books.