26 February 2014

Big B, Little b- what begins with B?

Books of course! A truly simple pleasure of mine is reading- sometimes I wish I could just read all day long. It's kind of funny because honestly I was a slow learner when it came to the reading scene. I have clear memories of looking at books in kindergarten and 1st grade, not understanding what was going on. But the summer between 1st and 2nd grade it all clicked- woah- my eyes were opened for the first time to the amazing literary world. I even remember the first chapter book I read by myself. The Baby-Sitters Little Sister book # 52 - Karen's Mermaid. It felt amazing, I was proud of myself and I couldn't wait to see what else was out there. 
Last week I mentioned I was reading The Monuments Men, which I since finished along with several other books ( I like reading multiple books at a time, I mean not all at once but I read a few chapters of this, read a few chapters of that..)- thought I would give a few  reviews and pass the titles along to all the other book lovers out there.

 Labor Day by Joyce Maynard : I thought this was an excellent read- the point of view is from the son, and tells a somewhat unconventional love story. It has recently come out as a movie with Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin. A prisoner escapes from a local jail finds a mother and son in a supermarket... things go from there. I read this one pretty fast, in about a day, mostly because a) it was good b) I wanted to know what happened. Kept me surprised and not all at the same time..
   The Monuments Men by Robert M. Edsel : This was a great look at a side of history we don't normally see. Things that in history class you didn't even think about questioning- but what did happen to all the amazing European artwork when Hitler was doing his thing? This is about the very small group of men who helped save and bring back some of the most famous pieces of art during and after WWII. The book is long and very dense in some places ( I admit, I might have skipped some paragraphs here and there) but the underlying story is great and you get to learn something new and true. Also a new movie out, but apparently its gotten bad reviews- not sure if I will see it. And for the  movie watchers- the characters in the movie are not of the same names as the actual people in the book.
 The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey: This is a great Young Adult novel. I told my family it was a mixture of Independence Day, The Host, Ender's Game and War of the Worlds. If you like the new "end-of-the-world/teen take over" books, like Hunger Games and Divergent, this is a good one for you. I also read it very quickly- it's a bit confusing in the beginning, but it catches you up quickly. Part of a series and the next isn't due until the fall... Noooooo!!! I want it now!
 The Book Thief by Markus Zusak: Talk about beautiful tear-jerker. Make sure you have some kleenex handy. I read this book sometime in middle-school/high-school (I can't remember) and I recently watched the movie (amazing, go see it and bring some tissues for that too) and decided to re-read the book. Takes place in Germany during WWII, girl is fostered by a family, discovers how amazing books are (perfection, I know)  all while befriending a Jewish man living in their basement. I wish they added this to school required readings- maybe the do?- it is an excellent story and the narrator is Death. Also the movie does a good telling of the book, on my top list of adaptations.

Not going to lie, I saw some buzzfeed list a few months ago about books you should read before they come out as movies and that is why almost all of these are movies. Even so, the books were all great and I think you should all read them and then tell me what you think.


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