Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Chosen by Chaim Potok

This was a great re-read! Potok is such a good writer! I enjoyed the book all over again and learned new stuff about Jews and the history.
The novel takes place in Brooklyn. Too boys of different Jewish sects meet while playing baseball. World War II has just begun. The boys should have been enemies but they become BEST friends. They are almost opposite when it comes to home life. Their dads both love them but raise them so differently it is hard to imagine. They both love to read but one does it in secret and one does it without a second thought. The story takes you through the tough times in each of their lives and brings them together through their education and the study of the Torah. I highly recommend this book for a new perspective on Jewish life in America.

Whole Book

Saturday, December 26, 2009

My 2009 completed books!

My goal is to read 50 books each year. Here are all the books I read in 2009. I wanted to make sure I didn't just read children books but a few hefty classics and politics/history/biographies... Well, I got a few of those in but still read a lot of great children books! I also really enjoy the book groups I belong to. They help me to get some variety into my reading too.
Last years list.2008

This Years...
2009 Reading list

1.A Town Called Charity by Blaine and Brenton Yorgason
2.Forest Born by Shannon Hale
3.Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom
4.Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O'Brien
5.Midwives by Chris Bohjalian
6.We The Living by Ayn Rand
7.Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China by June Chang
8.The Quiet Little Woman: A Christmas Story by Louisa May Alcott
9.Lessons from the Varsity of Life by Robert Baden-Powell Pride and Prejudice by Austen An Assembly such as this by Aidan
12.Bullies in the Headlights by Mathew Buckley
13.Chickens in the Headlights by Matthew Buckley
14.The Blue Sword by Robin Mckinley
15.HOST by Stephanie Meyer
16.Julie of The Wolves by Jean Craighead George
17.The Walking Drum by Louis L'Amour
18.5,000 year leap by Skousen Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank
20.Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis
21.Elantris by Brandon Sanderson
22.The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke
23.Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke
24.I Don't Have to Make Everything All Better by Gary Lundberg and Joy Lundberg
25.The Law by Frederick Bastiat
26.A Girl Named Zippy: Growing Up Small in Mooreland Indiana by Haven Kimmel
27.The Case Against the Fed by Murray N. Rothbard
28.Empire by Orson Scott Card
29.History of Hyde Park in Utah's Cache Valley, 1860-1990 by Dale Z Kirby
30.These Three Remain: A novel of Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman by Pamela Aidan
31.Duty and Desire: A Novel of Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman by Pamela Aidan
32.Sarah by Orsen Scott Card
33.The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread DiCamillo, Kate
34.Daddy Long Legs Webster, Jean
35.The Hero and the Crown McKinley, Robin
36.For One More Day Albom, Mitch
37.Hush Woodson, Jacqueline
38.The Littlest Angel Tazewell, Charles
39.The Walking Drum L'Amour, Louis
40.Jonathan Livingston Seagull Bach, Richard
41.The Redheaded Princess: A Novel Rinaldi, Ann
42.Princess Academy Hale, Shannon
43.The Omnivore's Dilemma Pollan, Michael
44.The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
45.The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
46.Christmas Oranges retold by Linda Bethers
47.One Special Star by Anita Mcfadzean
48.The Littlest Christmas Elf by Nancy Buss
49.One Snowy Night by Nick Butterworth
I am still reading the last book but should have it finished before the New Year!
50.The Chosen by Chaim Potok

A Town Called Charity by Blaine and Brenton Yorgason

This was an interesting book of short stories about making decisions. I found a few of them to be very profound and thought provoking. I picked up this book at the DI for my son but read it before I passed it to him.
The last story in the book was about a Town Called Charity. You would have thought a town with a name like that would be very charitable but when a "tramp" comes to town we learn what is really in everyone's hearts and minds. The town learns a lesson and in the end Charity is found again.
I like books with moral lessons and things that make you take a look at your own life. Even thought these were simple and very LDS they all were unique and interesting.

Whole Book

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Forest Born by Shannon Hale

This is the fourth book in the Goose Girl Series. I liked it a lot! It wasn't as dark as the one before. It also had all the characters from the books before but this one was written from the perspective of a new character, Rinna. It was also pretty humorous in some parts. It was also very unpredictable.

Whole Book

Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom

I thought I already blogged this book but I guess I didn't. It was a good one for Christmas month. I liked the fact that Mitch wrote about his thoughts on being a Jew and his ideas about Christian faiths from the point of view different then mine. I also liked that he wrote about a man that changed his life around, completely around and became a priest helping others that were just like him before he changed. It was also interesting to find out more about the Jewish faith.

Whole book.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O'Brien

Z for Zachariah (New Windmill) Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O'Brien

This one is a page turner! It was so scary! The end of the world and you don't get to pick who you are stuck with, or do you? I don't want to give anything else away. If you like reading about the end of the world -- well this one is a good. It is written from the prospective of a teenage girl. She is very innocent and naive.

I think there is a movie out too...anyone seen it?

Healing Book

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Saturday, December 05, 2009

Midwives by Chris Bohjalian

This book had a lot of flaws when it came to planned home birth with a midwife in this century but it certainly had a page turner story to tell.

The events are laid out by Connnie, an OB/GYN Doctor and daughter of Sibyl Danforth, the midwife who is on trial. She is remembering what happened when seh was 13. The event was to be a normal home birth of Charlotte Bedford's second child. A few things in the birth process changed for the worst, and Sibyl, unable to get to the hospital due to a snow storm did an emergency cesarean section to save Charlotte's baby. Charlotte's husband, and Anne, the inexperienced assistant were present during the unfortunate incident but had different opinions to what happened. The jury must now decide if Sibyl Danforth performed the cesarean section while Charlotte was alive, thus killing her because of a massive hemorrhage or if she was already dead before she saved the babies life. Hero or manslaughter?

I think the author did a good job trying to tell what it was like to give birth and from a girls perspective too, but he failed to knock out some stereo types. Midwives and their clients are not all hippies wearing long dresses and hugging everyone. In fact most now days aren't at all like that. Not all teenagers smoke weed behind their parents backs and they don't all drink, smoke and think about sex all the time! I guess he just doesn't think very highly of that age group or women that don't follow the crowd to the hospital.

The trial was interesting because it kind of helped me get a sense of the different strategies lawyers use to stack the jury and time things just right for psychological dramatic effect in the courtroom. So many small details go into each trial. The lives of the people on trial are changed or destroyed by what seems like powerful people...the lawyers. They are either defending or prosecuting and if they make a mistake lives are changed forever. The lawyer in this book seemed really on top of things but so did his opponent. I really didn't know who would win until the very very end of the book. Suspenseful!

For fictional light reading I think the book was okay but to learn about midwives and home birth, I think I would stick to the real thing. The truth about birth goes much deeper then a murder trial or a teenagers perspective on the world. I have used midwives with three of my babies births and have found the whole experience to be enlightening, peaceful, and educational. I was very thankful for the wonderful midwives that have passed through my life and helped me find joy in the process of getting my little ones here. I wouldn't have done it any other way despite the pros and cons that can sometimes seem scary. I think the risks would have been greater for me to have my babies in a hospital. Thank goodness we live in a time where Medical professionals and midwives have so much technology at their fingertips. Birth is a natural thing!

Healing Book, Broken Book