Ellen (ennienyc) wrote,

Books

Before my windows were replaced almost 2 years ago Thanksgiving, I sorted the books I needed to review into neat piles (loved, just OK, didn't finish, nonfiction, Library Thing early reviewers, etc.) which then got messed up when I had to move everything away from the window area. The books sat in my living room randomly piled, until the windows were done and I moved them back to the bedroom, still random. There are two tall piles, and while they aren't in danger of hitting the ceiling (yet), I need to get moving. Besides catching up on blog backlog, this will allow me to give away books. Unfortunately, between the giveaway shelf at the Times and exchange shelf in my laundry room, I acquire more than I give away. We won't even talk about the books that find their way to my iPad apps, but at least those are just taking up cyberspace.

The books I'm willing to give away are listed here (if the status is set by someone else, I no longer have the book), if anyone wants anything. I list the book trading site I'm using, or I can mail or delivery personally to friends. I like books to find a good home.

Nonfiction:

Hugs & Kisses (You Deserve Lots of Them) by Bruce Davis and Genny Wright - This is a cute little illustrated book, with sayings like "Sometimes you just use your little finger to kiss a hurt" (with a picture of a woman touching a lump on a boy's head) - just like my mother used to kiss the booboo to make it better. My (used) copy is inscribed "Especially for C., In admiration, J." Whoever they are, I wish them well, and I'll pass the book on to spread love in this mean old world (not really... but I don't see a need to keep the book, and will make it available).

Falling For Me: How I Hung Curtains, Learned to Cook, Traveled to Seville, and Fell in Love by Anna David - I loved this author's fiction book Bought, but her real-life memoir did not grab me. Using Helen Gurley Brown as her mentor, David traveled both literally and figuratively to enrich her life.

The Great Fitness Experiment: One Year of Trying Everything by Charlotte Hilton Andersen - I probably should not have requested this book from Library Thing Early Reviewers, since my idea of fitness is joining the health club in my building's basement and then never going. My exercise consists of walking in the city, and taking the stairs to the second floor. So this book (where the author tries various fitness regimes) didn't hold my interest and I skimmed most of it. I did like the chapters on Jillian Michaels and Skinny Bitch.

The Case for Falling in Love by Mari Ruti - Another one I shouldn't have requested from Library Thing, since I'm kind of retired from this venue and didn't really want to read about it. So I skimmed and didn't absorb much. My fault; it could be a wonderful and useful book, for all I know.

Fiction:

Between You and Me by Emma McLoughlin and Nicola Kraus - I was excited to get this from Netgalley. I loved The Nanny Diaries (I own but have not yet read the sequel), though some of the authors' later works weren't as good. I almost met one of the authors (her then-fiancee, now-husband worked in the same office where I had a short-term assignment; I saw them having dinner in our kitchen area and he later told me who she was - and that they liked Wordplay), so there's a bit of a connection. In this book, a Britney Spears-like character (former child star still not very grown up, dysfunctional family, acting out, bad choices - but no lip synching) hires her estranged cousin. The past is slowly revealed as we follow them on tour. These are not likable characters, and I found it hard to root for anyone.

More Like Her by Liza Palmer - There is an underlying sadness about this book, which deals with a shooting at a private school of the seemingly perfect principal by her crazed husband. The teachers deal with this tragedy as well as their own love lives. Maybe I like my chick lit more frothy.

Here, Home, Hope by Kaira Rouda - Kelly's life is basically OK, but while the kids are at camp she feels a midlife malaise. Making a conscious effort to improve, she starts a real estate staging business, helps take care of a friend's daughter, and checks off items on a to-do list. This wasn't a bad book, but I couldn't fully get into it.

Blind Man's Alley by Justin Peacock - It's probably not a good sign that I don't remember much about this book, which I read less than 3 years ago. OK, I've read a lot of books since then, but this is a thick book (465 pages) so I must have spent some time on it. I gather it's about rich people, lawyers, real estate, community activists, and politicians in New York City so it's the sort of thing I like (I like to stay close to home, even in my fiction) ... but I just can't remember much.

Heart Conditions by Sara Lewis - Alice finds herself barefoot and pregnant, or at least unmarried and pregnant, and decides to keep the baby. At the same time, she moves in with her eccentric former Hollywood starlet grandmother. Like some of those around her, I felt she wasn't ready for motherhood, but what do I know?

Starfishing by Nicola Monaghan - London's equivalent of Wall Street is one crazy place, especially for young women. Frankie tries to break in as a trader and deals with the accompanying sex, drugs and rock and roll (well, everything except the rock and roll). It's decadent and exhausting. I have no personal experience with that world, but I don't think I could survive.

College Girl by Patricia Weitz - Natalie transfers into U Conn and has to grow up fast. I would hate her life, and probably would not have made the same choices. This was basically a downer, but does capture post-adolescent angst.
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