Thursday, January 31, 2013

This Book Room

Alan Christoffersen, a once-successful advertising executive, wakes one morning to find himself injured, alone, and confined to a hospital bed in Spokane, Washington. Sixteen days earlier, reeling from the sudden loss of his wife, his home, and his business, Alan left everything he knew behind and set off on an extraordinary cross-country journey. Carrying only a backpack, he planned to walk to Key West, the farthest destination on his map. But a vicious roadside stabbing has interrupted Alan’s trek and robbed him of his one source of solace: the ability to walk. Homeless and facing months of difficult recovery, Alan has nowhere to turn—until a mysterious woman enters his life and invites him into her home. Generous and kind, Angel seems almost too good to be true, but all is not as it appears. Alan soon realizes that before he can return to his own journey, he must first help Angel with hers. From one of America’s most beloved and bestselling storytellers comes an astonishing tale of life and death, love and second chances, and why sometimes the best way to heal your own suffering is by helping to heal someone else’s. Inspiring, moving, and full of wisdom, Miles to Go picks up where the bestseller The Walk left off, continuing the unforgettable series about one man’s unrelenting search for hope. 

Additional notes: This is the second book in the Walk series. There are currently three books in the series, and the fourth book is due out later this year, in 2013. You can read my review of the first book here.

My thoughts: This book is just as riveting as the first. Angel and Alan are quite the characters. You just find yourself rooting for them all the way through - not necessarily in a romantic way, but in a "I hope they can work out their weirdness and be friends" kind of way. This series is actually refreshing in that it's not about romance - it really is about one man's quest to find, what I believe, will be God. With finding God, I imagine he'll find hope, joy, himself - all the things a human needs to persevere in the tough times. This series is good for anyone - man, woman, teenager, families, etc.

The little settlement that weathered the long, hard winter of 1880-81 is now a growing town. Laura is growing up, and she goes to her first evening social. Mary is at last able to go to a college for the blind. Best of all, Almanzo Wilder asks permission to walk home from church with Laura. And Laura, now fifteen years old, receives her certificate to teach school.

Additional notes: This is the seventh book in the Little House on the Prairie series. There are nine books in this series and all have been released. You can read my review of the first book here, the second book here, the third book here, the fourth book here, the fifth book here and the sixth book here

My thoughts: While it's fun to read about Laura now as a teenager, I find myself yearning for the earlier books, when the girls were all girls and young. I imagine that's pretty much how I'll feel all the time once my little Monster {who isn't even here yet!} reaches his/her teen years. There's just something so precious about a young child. Once a kid is a teen, it's like s/he sees the world for what it really is, which is typically disappointing compared to what they thought it would be. Sigh.

The Darlings have just begun their second semester of ninth grade, and love is in the air.
Victoria: The sweetheart
Jack: The irresistible songwriter...but is he writing off Victoria?
Natalya: The overachiever
Colin: The perfect match, if only the game were less complicated
Jane: The drama queen
Simon: The Greek god... of mixed signals
In the face of both joy and heartbreak, the Darlings know that they'll always have each other. Boys come and go, but the Darlings are still forever.

Additional notes: This is the second and latest book in the Darlings are Forever series. You can read my review of the first book here

My thoughts: When I read teen fiction books like this, it's always enjoyable, but painful, too. I try to convince myself I wasn't like the character in the book when I was a teen, but it's a lie - I totally was! So much drama, so much angst. I tell you this: I am so glad I am a mature adult! Er, at least, I'm mature sometimes :) Anyway, the characters in this series are lovable, mostly. Natalya and Colin's story is most interesting to read. Victoria and Jack are just kind of sappy and annoying, and Jane and Simon are predictable. This book is mostly innocent, so if you have a teen girl, I would say this book is fine for her to read.

Real estate expert Olivia Bellamy reluctantly trades a trendy Manhattan summer for her family's old resort camp in the Catskills, where her primary task will be renovating the bungalow colony for her grandparents, who want one last summer together filled with fun, friends and family. A posh resort in its heyday, the camp is now in disarray and Olivia is forced to hire contractor Connor Davis -- a still-smoldering flame from her own summers at camp But as the days grow warm, not even the inviting blue waters of Willow Lake can cool the passions flaring or keep shocking secrets at bay. The nostalgic joy of summers past breathes new promise into a special place and people...a promise meant to last long after the season ends.

Additional notes: This is the first book in the Lakeshore Chronicles. There are nine books in this series and all have been released. I can't say for sure, but I would imagine this series is ongoing. 

My thoughts: If you can get past the few moments of seriously ucky romance, this book was intriguing. I love that there were several subplots for the reader to follow and that the author used flashbacks to fill in the story. Olivia has quite the family! I've been a camp counselor before, and while my experience was relatively tame since I was counselor for a Girl Scout camp, Susan definitely gets the setting and feel right for a camp experience. It made me want to go back up north, camp in a tent and make a fire!

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