Monday, November 29, 2010

Currently Reading

A World Without Islam by Graham E. Fuller

Yet another book spotted while at work. This is in the current affairs section, and it caught my eye and my interest. It's in this book that Fuller intends to show what the world may be like without Islam - and it may not necessarily be any different at all. Indeed, if not Islam, then what religion, what politics might have come into play and would they be the same in terms how how the West is viewed, etc? Very intriguing questions. I'm not yet very far into the book, but look forward to see how Fuller's ideas unfold.

Notes from the playlist: "What I've Done" by Marié Digby

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Recommended for Fantasy Readers (Kids and Adults)

Mariel of Redwall by Brian Jacques

I threw young readers in there because the Redwall books are placed in both the adult fantasy section as well sa the young readers section of the store. I read them when I was young, but I would totally read them as an adult as well. In the end it just depends upon the book style you want. But whatever you decide, these are a lot of fun. I actually found Watership Down through these. I chose Mariel of Redwall because it was my first Redwall book and my favorite. The main characters are mice, otters, moles, and other woodland creatures while the bad guys include stoats, weasels, and rat pirates. They're fun to read and I must say, the food always sound delicious, haha.

Notes from the playlist: "Unopened" by Sonata Artica

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Recommended for Travelers and the Curious

God's Middle Finger: Into the Lawless Heart of the Sierra Madre by Richard Grant

I first spotted this book two, maybe three years ago when working at my other store. It's kind of hard to ignore a book called God's Middle Finger. It's equally hard to forget about it after reading what it's about. With phrases like, "[...] his reckless adventure spiraled into his own personal heart of darkness when cocaine-fueled Mexican hillbillies hunted him through the woods all night, bent on killing him for sport." Whaaaat? Really? Of course, I didn't get the chance to read it right away, but that book stuck with me until years later I finally got my hands on it. It's a great read. Definitely worth it. Grant travels all along Sierra Madre and learns about how the police and the drug dealers co-exist, sees abject poverty, the nonstop machismo that saturates the culture (and the men), and quickly discovers that it's all about who you know.

I put this book near Thanksgiving because after reading this book, it just makes me thankful for everything I have here. I'm sure Grant's happy to be alive and well on the opposite side of the Mexican border...

Read the Epinions review here!

Notes from the playlist: "Silver Springs" by Fleetwood Mac

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Recommended for Kids, Camels, and Beach Bums

To the Beach by Thomas Docherty

"Take an adventurous trip to the beach and hang out with the best camel ever."

That's what my Bookseller Recommends card read when I stuck this book on the recommendation shelf (back when I worked in a store that had newest store did away with employee recs - VERY sad about that). It's a simple story about going to the beach - but this boy does it in a very unexpected way. And the camel is awesome - and adorable. That was actually one of the things that made me pick up this book, the cuteness of the camel. Who doesn't love a camel that knows how to have fun? I know we're in November, so read this and think of sunny days, or hang onto it until beach days come again.

Notes from the playlist: "Love Song" by Sara Bareilles

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Recently Finished (and Recommended)

Star Island by Carl Hiaasen

I was in the mood for something different, and having read the book blurb about Carl Hiaasen's newest book, thought that might just do it. I've never read anything by him before and figured now was a good time to see what Carl's all about. Though Star Island doesn't really fit the mystery genre by any real definition, it was still a fun romp. Weird, wacky, and amusing at every turn, I had a great time and polished this off in a single day. It's all about the trials and tribulations of pop star Cherry Pye - or at least, her double Annie, who slips in when Cherry's too coked out/drunk/unconcious to do the job. I guess it's in mystery because A.) the rest of Carl's books are in there and B.) you really don't know who is going to do what next. It may be your cup of tea and it may not be, but I say definitely give it a try and see what happens.

Read the Epinions review here!

Notes from the playlist: "Who Wants to Live Forever" by Queen

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Recommended for Bakers of Cookies, Cakes, and More

Nestle Classic Recipes by Nestlé

Mmm. Who doesn't love Nestle goodness? From their classic chocolate chip cookie recipe to a few surprising ideas (key lime pie, anyone?), this book is choc-a-bloc full of delicious goodies ready for baking. And guess where I found this? In the bargain section of the store! Haha! Always great stuff in the bargain section. This book is a total joy to have around and I'm always eager to make something mouth-watering. The best part is that most of the recipes are simple, so for when I want something sweet and awesome and don't have the time or money for a recipe from Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey, this is the way to go. Yummy!

Notes from the playlist: "Vianne Sets Up Shop" by Rachel Portman

Friday, November 5, 2010

Recommended for Readers of Dystopia

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Dystopia. The opposite of utopia. This is one of the quintessential dystopian novels, alongside others like 1984 and Brave New World. Book burning is what Guy does as a fireman. He starts the fires - he doesn't put them out. At least, until he discovers that there is more to life than burning books. That in the past, books weren't set on fire - they were read. He begins to discover how ridiculous and meaningless most of his life is. Soon, ideas of escape begin to form... This was indeed a good book and it is more than interesting to watch Guy change as he learns more and more. But when a novel rests in a dystopian society, how it ends can be anyone's guess...

Notes from the playlist: "Reunited" by Alan Silvestri

Monday, November 1, 2010

October Book Giveaway Winners!

Well, the winners have been chosen via Random Number Generator and the ballots are in (wait...numbers? Ballots? Nevermind). The winners are:

Anonymous for The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff! (wow, it seemed like everybody wanted this book...)
David for Little Bee by Chris Cleave!
Nicole C. for Zoo Story by Thomas French!
MayinJune for The Search for Wondla by Tony DiTerlizzi!

Congratulations guys! I hope you enjoy your new reads!

Thanks to everyone who participated and keep checking back for more cool books to read. And you never know when I'll have another book giveaway!


Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Whoops! I completely forgot to mention this. Last month I reviewed Stephanie Garber's amazing book Caraval for the web blog I curre...