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Showing posts from April, 2011

Ellen Tebbits

Here's another book that I read with our 5 year old daughter. I actually remember the plot of this book fairly well, it must have been one of the books that I owned as a child and read over and over. Ellen is a normal girl, she lives on Tillamook street, she takes ballet from Valerie Todd Spofford, she's in the third grade, but she feels that she's the only girl in her whole school whose mother makes them wear scratchy woolen underwear. Ellen must hurry to her dance class to arrive before everyone else so that none of the other girls will guess her secret. Unfortunately, the new girl Austine has arrived before Ellen and by the time she goes into the dance studio it's time for the other girls to arrive, so Ellen does the only thing that she can do to protect her secret, she goes into the cleaning closet to change and hopes that the other girls don't realize that she's in there and open the door. Poor Ellen, unable to keep her woolen underwear up, her teacher'…

The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party

This is the newest book in the No 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. These are some fun books. I love the characters! Precious Ramotswe is the lady detective, her assistant/secretary is Grace Makutsi. There is Mma Ramotswe's husband Mr. JLB Matekoni and his apprentices, Charlie and Fanwell. Oh and I can't forget her tiny white van, it's a character too! These characters are all so crazy, I've gotten to the point that I feel like I know them. Mma (I can't remember what this stands for anymore, but it's something to do with respect for mothers) Ramotswe has more crazy cases to solve. She's contacted by a man who's fearful after 4 of his cattle have been found dead in his field. All of the cattle's front legs have been slit and the cattle bled to death. He's so fearful that he refuses to go to the No 1 Ladies' Detective Agency office, so they meet for tea elsewhere. There is a lot of tea drinking going on in Africa apparently. As Mma Ramots…

Vengeance

I love to read books that seem scary and that you are constantly trying to figure out who did it. Clair Poulson is one of my favorites. This book starts when Aubree Lansing is 8, she's playing in her parents walk in closet when she hears arguing and a few minutes later a gunshot. She waits for a little bit to make sure that everyone who was arguing had left before she ventures over to peek out. When she does she's terrified. Her father is standing over what appears to be a dead body, he's got blood on his hands and he's holding a gun. Of course, Aubree has to testify at her father's trial and what she saw is condemning enough that her father is sentenced to go to jail. 10 years later we find an 18 year old Aubree living a privileged life. Her mom's a wealthy model and her step-father a renowned lawyer. They live in a big fancy mansion with lots of servants to help them do things. They are about to embark on a cruise as a family, when with no warning Aubree'…

Honeymoon Heist

Claire wants her wedding day to Rodney to be perfect, and it's really not even close. I hadn't realized that in England marriages in the Temple are not considered legal. They have to get married in a civil ceremony first and then go to the Temple to be sealed. Anyway, off an a tangent, Sorry! Their wedding day wasn't perfect for so many reasons. Her maid of honor is a tomboy and hated the dress that she had to wear. All kinds of people that neither Claire nor Rodney knew showed up at their reception. And worst of all Claire's ex-husband, Alexander, showed up at their reception - drunk! Little do they know, the honeymoon is going to be worse than the reception! They go to a little island called Majorca, a tropical paradise, for their honeymoon. Claire hadn't realized how cheap Rodney was before their honeymoon and Rodney hadn't realized how much Claire liked to spend either. They'll have to spend some time getting to know each other better, but not on their …

Mark of Royalty

This book starts with the King's advisor, Apollo, on a nighttime mission. He's carrying a newborn princess to a friend to care for. The people in this kingdom have been waiting for an heir to the throne to be born. Some have said that they would kill any girls that were the first born. Fortunately for the queen she had twins, a boy and a girl, unfortunately the girl was born first, and without even looking to see a gender, Apollo had marked her as the heir to the throne. In order to save the small princess' life, Apollo also marked her twin brother and swearing any who knew the queen had born twins to secrecy he sets off to meet with his friend Miranda. Miranda is a young widow, so Apollo knows that she will have no trouble leaving her life in this country for a new life in another country. Miranda agrees to take the newborn princess and raise her as her own with no one knowing that she is actually the heir to the throne of this kingdom. She leaves as soon as she can. The …

Henry and Beezus

Here's another book that I read with our 5 year-old. Right now Beverly Cleary is her favorite author. I think we've read all of the Ramona series and this is the second or third of the Henry series that we've read. I'm not sure if we ever know just how old Henry is. He doesn't have a bike of his own yet, but he's in school, so he's past trike riding age. I would imagine he's probably somewhere around 8 or 10. He has a dog named Ribsy and one or the other of them is always in a bit of a mess. In this book Henry gets in lots of messes. Ribsy steals the neighbors meat that they were making for dinner for some friends that were coming over. Henry finds a ton of gum and tries to make money to buy himself a bike by selling it at school. That one backfires, because the kids are not allowed to chew gum at school. I love how Beezus and Ramona are included in these books. Beezus and Henry are as good of friends as that age boy and girl could be. They still can ge…

By Love or By Sea

This book has been out for a while, I remember watching for it at the library, but it didn't ever show up on the online catalog. I was randomly searching for books on the library site a few weeks ago and remembered this title. They had finally gotten it! This was a really cute book. Alice is a young woman who dreams of a young man, the problem is that she doesn't know who it is. Then one day, she happens across some one walking through town. He asks her if the Newmans still live in town. She tells him that they do, and he goes on his way, but Alice has a hard time getting the stranger off of her mind. He bears an uncanny resemblance to Caleb Newman, the young man that she was in love with as a young girl, and also to the mysterious man that shows up in her dreams. Soon she learns that it was Caleb back basically from the dead, because everyone thought that he had drowned when the ship that he was sailing on went into the ocean in a storm six years before. Unfortunately Alice d…

Faith Behind the Fences

This book is a true story, in a novel form. Because, like historical fiction, you can't always know exactly what was said when or by who. Sumatra is a hot and humid island. At the beginning of World War 2 it was ruled by the Dutch. There were also a lot of Dutch citizens that lived there. Hanny Londt-Shultz and her family were some of them. They lived a normal life of school, fun with friends and family and music on the island of Sumatra. Soon though, they learned that the Japanese were trying to take over the islands to use their natural resources. Hanny's father tried to prepare his family as best as he could for the Japanese takeover. He buried all of their valuables beneath a slab of concrete in the backyard. He put all of their important papers into a hidden compartment of a suitcase that his wife Tina would carry with her. And then he did what the Dutch government wanted him to do. He sabotaged the mines and oil fields of the island in any way that he could think of. Alm…

The Assignment

Julia is a middle aged mother of 3, she's also employed by Melton Mallon. He's an older wealthy philanthropist, who likes to help people in under privileged countries. He has numerous charities and Julia oversees some of them in the Philippines. Melton's granddaughter Sophie works as a nurse at one of his charities in the Philippines. One day she and fellow nurse, Lily, are taking a break at the mall when they are abducted by two men. Sophie's kidnapping is devastating to her grandfather, more especially since her grandmother is battling cancer and chemotherapy and not doing well at all. So Melton asks Julia to go to the Philippines and put together a group of men to find and bring back Sophie. Meanwhile, Sophie has determined that she's in the custody of members of the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf and that she needs to be very careful of what she says and how she goes about nursing the boy that the group has kidnapped her to nurse. As she watches the others who are …

The Wanderer

I used to enjoy reading books by Anita Stansfield, but the last few of her series just haven't been as enjoyable to me. I'm not sure why, maybe she's just being way too rushed when she's writing them. This one was okay for me. It's the story of Ian. He's run away from his home and family. The reason he ran away was that his best friend, Greer, was killed in a fire at a tavern and he was too drunk at the time to be able to help him get out. Ian was lucky that he was able to get himself out. He doesn't even remember how he got out. One day in his drunk stupor in London, he sees some street preachers with a large crowd around them. He decides to see what all the fuss is about. He hears the street preacher reading some sort of scripture that entices him to buy the book. It happens to be The Book of Mormon. I found this kind of interesting, because he decides right then to go home to his family in Scotland and doesn't really even read the book. He reads a bi…

I'll Walk Alone

Mary Higgins Clark is my very favorite suspense author. I was so happy to have gotten this book almost as soon as it came out! Zan Moreland's life has been terrible for the last two years. Two years ago her son, Matthew, was kidnapped from his stroller in Central Park as his teenage babysitter napped next to him. He was 3 at the time. This story opens on his 3rd birthday. Zan has spent all of her money hiring expensive private investigators to search for her son. She's devastated that it's been two years with none of them being able to find him. She's also trying to run her little interior decorating business. Her ex-husband insists that they need to have dinner together on Matthew's birthday, so Zan reluctantly agrees to meet him. Little does she know, her world is about to be turned upside down. Some one has stolen her identity it seems, because there are mysterious charges on her credit card. A plane ticket out of the country, new clothes, furnishings for a job …

Miles to Go

This is the second book in The Walk series by Richard Paul Evans. I'm really enjoying this series. It's about Alan, his wife died in the first book, after she dies Alan realizes that he has nothing to live for. His business tanked and he couldn't afford his expensive house, so he decides to walk from Seattle where he and his wife lived to Key West, Florida. The only reason for picking Key West was that it was the farthest place away from his home on the map. Along the way he's met and helped people, people have met and helped him. And some thugs beat him up. That's why in the beginning of this book he wakes up in a hospital in Spokane, Washington. He wakes up and realizes that he's been stabbed in the stomach and that he will have kind of a long recuperation. It will soon be winter and Wyoming winters are brutal, so he knows there is no way that he will get across Idaho and Wyoming before the snows of winter hits. That depresses him a little, but he does get to…

The Fourth Nephite

This book is one that I've had on hold at the library FOREVER! I'm glad it was worth the wait. Kaleo is a junior in high school, popular, on the football team. It seems as though he has everything going for him. The one thing that he's not sure of is his Testimony of the Church. He goes through the motions of attending Church and Seminary, but that's all it is. He doesn't read his scriptures, he figures that Joseph Smith just wrote them himself. One day, he's pressured to attend a "party." A big guy on the football team tricks him into hiding out beneath the bleachers with some cheerleaders and some beer. His Seminary teacher finds him there with a cheerleader on his lap and a beer in his hands. Even though he hadn't had any beer, his seminary teacher thinks the worst and who could blame him? Sometimes pictures speak louder than words. Kaleo is terrified that his Seminary teacher is going to turn him in to both his mom and his football coach and t…

Becoming Kate

I found the opening of this book pretty interesting. You meet the main character, Liz and her family Bruce, Megan and Mark and within a page or two Liz has died. She was having a normal Saturday morning, when she was hit by a truck on her way to the grocery store. What I found really interesting was that 3 days later Liz wakes up in an 11 year-old's body. This girls name is Kate and everyone is calling her Kate, but it's a bit confusing for Liz. You see Liz was an organ donor and Kate's brain wasn't working properly so they implanted Liz's brain into Kate's body, thinking they had erased all of Liz's memories, but they hadn't. Liz is terrified to tell anyone that she still has her memories, because she thinks that if the doctors know they will erase her and who knows what it will do to Kate's body, but Liz will definitely be completely dead and gone. Being a mother, I can understand why Liz's main concern is the well being of her kids and husban…

Beyonders: A World Without Heroes

Some of my very favorite books are Brandon Mull's Fablehaven series, if you haven't read them, you definitely should. Anyway, we had to read this new series of Brandon Mull's. I got to read it second, because our 10 year-old wasn't already in the middle of a book like I was. It was kind of funny to be reading a book second for a change, I usually get to read them first, she kept coming and reading over my shoulder to see where I was and saying how much she loved the part that I was reading. Jason is a normal boy about to start high school. He does normal things like playing baseball and working at his afternoon job at the Vista, Colorado zoo. One day he's cleaning the hippo's tank when all of a sudden he hears music- normally not a problem - but this music is coming from the hippo's mouth. Jason climbs onto the railing for a better look, not a smart move, because he loses his balance. As he's falling into the hippo pool, the hippo opens his mouth and Ja…

The Gate of No Return

Sorry this picture is so blurry! I've had to figure out how to take pictures of books so that they're not blurry and now I may need to figure out newspapers. This is another of the serialized stories that our newspaper publishes. I think that it's cool that they care so much about reading. I've always felt that reading is important and that's why we're raising a couple of readers! This was an interesting story, I found it kind of strange. Our 10 year-old says that she's liked it, but I'm honestly secretly glad that it's over! This is a story about Axle, a Manarkin that lives on the planet Mizmoe, lately strange things have been happening to Axle. He's blown up a science lab, and ruined his schools chances in the Manarkin Marching Band Competition, little does he know that more crazy things are going to happen to him. His father is missing and he's been raised by his mother, a perfectly great mother, all by herself for as long as he can remem…

Re-Post: Key Lime Pie

I have really enjoyed these culinary mysteries by Josi Kilpack! I think her character Sadie Hoffmiller is hilarious. Sadie is an older widow and she always is in some kind of trouble, in the last book she was given community service for getting in the way of the police officers who were trying to investigate a murder. And of course, she always makes yummy food - the recipes are included in the book, so cool! This book finds Sadie finishing her community service with her friend, Eric, of course Eric wants more than just a friendship with Sadie, but Sadie's confused. She already has a boyfriend, police officer Pete Cunningham. When Eric gets a call from Florida police saying they may have found his daughter Meghan's body she must decide whether to stay in sleepy Colorado or follow Eric to busy Florida. This was a fun book, I have tried to read national best seller list culinary mysteries before, but I can never finish them, they are always full of profanity or blasphemy, but the…

Abish: Mother of Faith

Have you ever wondered about the woman Abish mentioned in the Book of Mormon. There are few verses written about her, but she was obviously a woman of great faith. I love how sometimes books can take a scene from the scriptures and make it seem real, as if those people are still living and breathing today. That was the kind of book that this was for me. Abish is a young woman in this book, she's already helped with King Lamoni's family's conversion to the faith of the Nephites. That happened in Abish: Daughter of God, the first book written by K.C. Grant. Abish is 24 in this book and married to a good man, Jared. He's a blacksmith and she is a healer, though he would rather she not be a healer. She wants children, but as yet has not been blessed with any. But, their faith is a problem for their Lamanite neighbors, who decide to come to war against them. The people of Anti-Nephi-Lehi as they are called have made a covenant with Heavenly Father that they will never take …

Decision Points

This book has been on my dresser for a while now (I think a couple of months, but I really can't remember!) I've wanted to read it, but I've had a bunch of library books to get through, plus sometimes I'd rather read fiction than a biography. Now I'm just sad that I put off reading it for so long! This is not a book describing what happened to President Bush day by day, this book is about his decisions on what he felt were the most important points in his presidency. He describes his life before the presidency, things like growing up, going to school, meeting Laura, their daughters and being Governor of Texas. It also talks about his campaigning to be president. Of course, it talks about things that happened during his Presidency. September 11th, the stock market collapse, war in Iraq and Afghanistan, writing letters to the families of every soldier that was killed in either of those places. There were some funny anecdotes too! Things like meeting U2's lead sin…

Ramona the Brave

I know that I've read an awful lot of these in the last few months, they're something that our 5 year-old has really been into since the Ramona and Beezus movie came out in January or February. Ramona is starting first grade in this book and she's having the growing pains that come from not going to kindergarten anymore. She has to go to school for the whole day, she has to get used to her new teacher's teaching style, and she's supposed to keep her hands to herself, sit in her own chair, not help others who haven't learned as quickly as she has and be quiet. She's also learning to sleep all alone in her bedroom for the first time in her life. She and Beezus have always shared a room, but now her parents have added another bedroom onto their house, so they can both have their own room. Ramona's never noticed before how noisy their house is and how many scary corners there can be when you turn out the light. This was a fun book, a classic really. How man…

Lucky Change

This was a fun book! Karen's an older single mom, she's worked at Smith's forever, she's got two grown kids and a cute granddaughter. One day, she goes to visit her Bishop to confess her sins, his first thought is that she's pregnant. But then she tries to hand him a tithing check with an awful lot of zeros on it, and he realizes that the terrible thing that she had done was buying a lottery ticket and she won! Her Bishop, Rex, happens to be an attorney so he tells her that she needs to keep quite about the fact that she won and come to see him at his law office the next day. Little does he know that for him, the fun has just begun. Karen had been the ward service project for the whole time her family had been in the ward, and she had kind of a grating personality so there was a lot of making fun of her behind her back going on in the ward. She realized that it was going on, but when she had more money than they all did she didn't try to get revenge, although h…