Not exactly a light beach read, but this is what I’m reading as part of treesofreverie’s read-a-thon today!
by Chelsea Handler
Released: 4 March 2014
Buy it now!
As everyone should know, I am a HUGE FAN of Chelsea Handler’s books (with the exception of Lies Chelsea Handler Told Me, which really wasn’t her fault, since her friends wrote it about her). Her first three books were outrageously funny (my favorite being Are You There Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea), with each book being a collection of short, humorous stories about her misadventures (with My Horizontal Life being a collection of stories about her sex life).
In Uganda Be Kidding Me, Handler has published another book of short stories surrounding a different theme: travel. As a big traveler who has collected quite a few funny stories crossing the globe myself, I was expecting a LOT from this book. Travel writing is easy! Especially when you’re making jokes about cultural misunderstandings. However, this book failed to meet my expectations and fell a little flat compared to Handler’s previous work.
Almost half the book is dedicated to a trip Chelsea takes in the wake of a serious breakup, where she treks to Africa with a group of girlfriends to go on safaris, meet handsome South African tour guides, and drink their way across the continent. It sounded fun, but reading about it wasn’t. Chelsea’s books have all consisted of short stories, so this extended look at a long trip was a bit dull; I wasn’t used to her writing commanding my attention for so long, and I felt like every other page was just her describing what she was drinking (and smoking).
The rest of the book consisted of short stories of Chelsea’s travels, which I found much more entertaining, though she did seem to stretch the ‘travel’ theme a bit far, by delving into stories about the misbehaved dog she tried to adopt and the time her friend stole her car in Bel Air and then left her stranded in her mansion when all she wanted was a margarita. The stories were funny, but I felt like she could have made the book even more entertaining had she not tried doing the travel theme to begin with.
Chelsea is a narcissist, an alcoholic, and a totally dependent human being who writes books inviting people to laugh at her, and I do. I enjoy her books, but I certainly don’t pick one up expecting something fantastic or PG-rated: I’m just looking for something that will make me laugh. Altogether, this book wasn’t horrible, but Chelsea has done a lot better, and I would recommend her first three books over this poor display.
What a sad review to be posting on the first day of TreesofReverie’s April Read-A-Thon!
I’m currently travelling in the GORGEOUS Savannah, Georgia, and luckily enough, I brought THE book on Savannah, Georgia with me. All the tourist shops have Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil statues, DVDs, books, and other memorabilia, and all of the tour guides mention the book on their tours.
Bonaventure cemetery is mentioned in the book, and the image on the front cover was taken here. Although the statue has since been moved to a museum, I still felt very close to the book walking around the cemetery today.
I’m so excited I’m starting off TreesofReverie’s April Read-A-Thon with such an interesting book!
by Jeff Lindsay
Released: 19 September 2006
Buy it now! - Only $6!
If you have seen the wildly popular TV show “Dexter,” then you know the premise of this series. In fact, the first season of the show is based exclusively on this book (with just a couple added subplots to make things more multidimensional), so the storyline is the same, and you really don’t need to read this book to learn anything new. If you haven’t seen the show, though, this book would probably strike you as incredibly unique and interesting.
Dexter Morgan is a sociopathic serial killer who only kills the bad guys. Working in a crime lab at the Miami police department with his foster sister, Deborah, he is in the perfect position to point the police in directions other than his own when the need arises. In most cases, though, Dexter is methodically neat and tidy with his kills, much like the new serial killer in town, who Dexter feels inexplicably drawn to. The voice in the back of his head that makes him carry out his kills seems to be drawing the two killers together, and Dexter feels excited about the killer in a way he never has with his personal relationships.
Despite feeling empty where his relationships are, Dexter knows he has to uphold the image of normalcy to keep people from finding out his secret. For this reason, he agrees to help Deborah find the killer so that she has a shot of joining the murder squad. Torn between his duty to Deborah and his obsession with finding the killer himself, Dexter must ultimately choose whether he allows the demon inside to control him or if he can make his own path.
Like I said, the TV show pretty much follows the book to a T, which made my reading of it a little less than fulfilling. If I had read the book before seeing the show, I’m pretty sure I would have been a lot more interested. That being said, the book did give me some insight into the show, mainly in regard to the actors. I had thought that some of the actors were really odd and not doing a good job until I realized that they were simply acting in the odd way that Lindsay had described them.
Altogether, the book offers an interesting mystery, a compelling protagonist, and an original storyline that isn’t often found. I would definitely recommend this book to those interested in mysteries, crime dramas, and quirky characters.
by Sarah Addison Allen
Genre: Southern Lit
Buy it now!
Josey Cirrini is a woman trapped in a life she thinks she deserves after subjecting her small town neighbors to her hellish childhood tantrums. Caring for her aging mother, whose jealousy and spite combine to make her daily life a living hell, Josey feels like she cannot leave the house without evoking her mother’s wrath, leaving her unfulfilled and friendless. The only solace Josey has is in her travel magazines, romance novels, and the stockpiles of sweets she keeps hidden in a secret closet. When a rough woman with a wicked past takes up residence in Josey’s closet, she finds her secret dangerously close to being revealed. The only way Josey can prevent the whole town from finding out about her binge eating is to go along with the woman’s plans, which mainly revolve around Josey getting a life of her own.
In her quest to be in charge of her own life, Josey joins forces with the dreamy hunk of a mailman, a sandwich connoisseur, and a sweet housekeeper with a limited understanding of English. With these unlikely sidekicks, and with a closet squatter directing the show, Josey begins to come to term with the fact that despite her mother’s testiness, the only thing holding her back is herself.
Much like Allen’s book The Girl Who Chased the Moon, this was a delightful Southern treat revolving around love, friendship, and growing up with a hint of the supernatural. The characters were instantly lovable, the plot sweet and uncomplicated, and the reading very easy.
My only criticism of the two books of Allen’s that I’ve read is that they’re light and fluffy, which is GREAT when you’re in the mood for something to soothe your soul, but her books aren’t going to change your life. I really enjoyed reading this, though (especially since I’ve traveled down to Georgia for Spring Break!), and found it a little more enchanting than The Girl Who Chased the Moon.
I would recommend this for lovers of chick lit and those who have a love affair with the South.
Donna Tartt just won a Pulitzer. Here are 21 other women writers you should add to your reading list.
Thanks to my beautiful friend Randa for sending me the article! I have to say, though, this list led to a lot of frustration when I realized I hadn’t seen my copy of Swamplandia! in awhile. I went on a massive search through my apartment, and it’s still missing. >: (
I’ve decided to hold a read-a-thon event! We’re now over a quarter of the way through 2014, so it’s a great time to assess where you are with your reading goals and progress for the year.
How can I join?
- Anyone is free to join! Please REBLOG this post if you are interested in taking part in…
I’m so excited to be taking part in TreesofReverie’s celebration of reading, the first official April Read-A-Thon!
Registration closes tomorrow, so don’t forget to reblog this post to let everyone know you’re taking part!
Top Ten Tuesday is an invention created by The Broke and the Bookish in which they give a prompt asking fellow book lovers to fill out a top ten list. This week’s theme is…
Top Ten Bookish Things I’d Like to Own
- A cool set of bookends from Knob Creek Metal Arts.
- A Pride and Prejudice book scarf.
- A Mr. Darcy Proposal Mug.
- A Glinda-themed “Only Bad Witches are Ugly” bookmark.
- A nice guy wearing an “I am Mr. Darcy” t-shirt.
- A book wreath (I’ll probably make one myself).
- A Jane Eyre Litographs tote (designed with actual text from the book!)
- A Wuthering Heights-inspired necklace (“Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.”).
- A Gone with the Wind-inspired print (“You should be kissed and often and by someone who knows how.”).
- A trip to Harry Potter world at Universal!
Cherry Blossoms in the Capital!
Thank YOU for being awesome!
I was tagged by the supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Sylvia. I’m actually stealing some questions from THIS post she made a couple of days ago because I thought they were too hilarious too pass up.
1. List 11 facts about yourself.
2. Answer 11 questions chosen by the person who nominated you.
3. Ask 11 new questions to 11 bloggers.
1. I’m really looking forward to getting started with container gardening this spring!
2. I love documentaries, especially ones dealing with adoption. I cry.
3. Last year I rang in my birthday by seeing my favorite 80’s cover band with a friend.
4. I am deathly terrified of bugs of all kinds. Butterflies! Ants! Flies! I had two ladybugs find their way into my bedroom last summer, and I had to construct a blanket fort in bed to protect myself. Shit got real.
5. I spend a lot of time day-dreaming about having a pet Corgi named Mustaches.
6. I played the drums in high school.
7. My sister is convinced I speak fluent French. She has always thought this. She has taken French in school for the past 3 years, and she has told her teachers every year, “You should meet my sister, she speaks French!” I do not speak French. It’s a very weird situation, and I have no idea where this idea originated from.
8.Today I bought some light sabers. Just because.
9. I have been to Disney Land on 3 different continents. My favorite ride is the Haunted Mansion.
10. I’m currently watching Freaky Eaters on Netflix, and all I want to do is eat the exact things that the show’s saying are terrible. Really, this show is a horrible influence. A show about a woman who eats cheesy potatoes for every meal of every day sounds like HEAVEN. WAIT - the cheesy potato addict’s HUSBAND called a dietician and a psychotherapist to corner her in a fast food parking lot? That’s messed up. Choose the cheesy potatoes, woman! You don’t need your husband! They just made her dump a bunch of raw potatoes on the road and then cover them with shredded cheese. Now the therapist is holding her as she cries at the pile of potatoes and cheese and is asking, “What do you want to say to these potatoes?” This show is whack, and I’m still hungry.
11. I’m SUPER EXCITED to go to DC tomorrow to see the cherry blossoms! I try to see them every year.
Questions from ifyougaveagirlabook:
1. Do you have a favorite classic? What is it?
Gone with the Wind! I love the book and the movie.
2. What is/are your favorite genre(s)?
Lately, it’s been GAME OF THRONES. Not fantasy, just GAME OF THRONES ALL THE TIME. It’s ADDICTIVE. The guys who sit next to me at work are obsessed with the show, and obviously, I’m haven’t gotten to the parts in the stories that they’re covering in the TV show, and the guys spend large quantities of time talking SPOILERS when I’m trying to work. I think they’re catching on as I pop my head above my cubicle, glare at them, and angrily put on headphones during their conversations. This is going to ignite some kind of interoffice battle.
3. If half of your body was sewn onto half of an author’s body, which author would you pick and why? (you would still be alive)
I spend a lot of time imagining what it’d be like to travel back in time, kidnap someone from the 1800’s, and drag them back to the future to watch their mind explode. I would say Jane Austen. She’d be a fun one.
4. Name a favorite childhood book.
Chicken Soup with Rice. It’s actually kind of freaky-looking, in retrospect.
5. Are there other bookworms in your family?
My sister is DEFINITELY not, despite my yearly birthday book gifts for her. My dad reads history books every once in awhile. My mom used to read those horrible Harlequin romances when I was a kid, but then she stopped for about 10 years, and she has just recently picked up chick lit.
6. Least favorite book?
This honor will always belong to The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake!
7. If you could make a book come alive and have its characters pour out from the pages, which book would you choose?
Any of the Sookie Stackhouse books. That would be so interesting (and Eric? Unf.)
8. Which fictional character would you love to have a sleepover with? (I’m running out of ideas.. haha!)
Rhett Butler ;)
9. Who is your favorite literary parent?
Molly Weasley, of course!
10. What book did you read in school that you HATED?
The Bridge of San Luis Rey; a bunch of random people are crossing a bridge in South America, and it suddenly collapses. What a wonderful book to remind your freshmen students of how fragile their young lives are!
11. Read any good books lately? Let me know!
I’m currently struggling to keep up with A Clash of Kings and Chelsea Handler’s Uganda Be Kidding Me. I’ve been SWAMPED at work, but thankfully, I’ve got a beach vacation coming up in a few days, so hopefully I get a chance to catch up on my reading then!
My questions (very random and not very book-ish, I’m afraid):
1. Who is your celebrity crush?
2. Do you have any tattoos/do you want any?
3. What’s the best book you’ve ever given as a gift?
4. What’s your favorite magazine?
5. When did you get your first kiss?
6. What’s your favorite article of clothing you own?
7. What’s your favorite classic Nickelodeon TV show?
8. Where will you be going on your next vacation?
9. How did you meet your best friend?
10. What was your most recent disappointment?
11. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Anyone who wants to do this! I feel like people get annoyed when I tag them, even though I love being tagged in things myself!