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Throwback Thursday (20) November 15, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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2 comments

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Wicked: The Life and Time of the Wicked Witch of the West

Author: Gregory Maguire

Original Publication Date: December 5, 2000

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

When Dorothy triumphed over the Wicked Witch of the West in L. Frank Baum’s classic tale, we heard only her side of the story. But what about her arch-nemesis, the mysterious witch? Where did she come from? How did she become so wicked? And what is the true nature of evil?

Gregory Maguire creates a fantasy world so rich and vivid that we will never look at Oz the same way again. “Wicked” is about a land where animals talk and strive to be treated like first-class citizens, Munchkinlanders seek the comfort of middle-class stability and the Tin Man becomes a victim of domestic violence. And then there is the little green-skinned girl named Elphaba, who will grow up to be the infamous Wicked Witch of the West, a smart, prickly and misunderstood creature who challenges all our preconceived notions about the nature of good and evil.

I was enchanted with Elphaba in Wicked. She was spunky and so different from any other heroine that I ever read about. I loved learning how she developed into the “Wicked Witch of the East”. This is another book I keep meaning to pick up again. I have a whole TBR list book of rereads!

Throwback Thursday (18) November 1, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Desert Heat

Author: J.A. Jance

Original Publication Date:  1993

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Life is good for Joanna Brady in the small desert community of Bisbee. She has Jenny, her adored nine-year-old daughter, and solid, honest, and loving husband, Andy, a local lawman who’s running for Sheriff of Cochise County. But her good life explodes when a bullet destroys Andy Brady’s future and leaves him dying beneath the blistering Arizona sun.

The police brass claim that Andy was dirty — up to his neck in drugs and smuggling — and that the shooting was a suicide attempt. Joanna knows a cover-up when she hears one…and murder when she sees it. But her determined efforts to track down an assassin and clear her husband’s name are placing herself and her Jenny in serious jeopardy. Because, in the desert, the truth can be far more lethal than a rattler’s bite.

This is another book that my Mother turned me onto. I’m so glad she did because it has such a likable female protagonist. Jance balances vulnerability and strength well in Joanna Brady. Not only is Joanna grieving the loss of her husband, she’s fighting to clear his good name. As she does so, she ends up having to also fight to save the lives of both herself and her daughter.

The characters I also really appreciated were the parents of Andy. They were truly salt of the earth people. Grounded and comforting, they provided Joanna and Jenny with a lot of support throughout the series. As the books went on I grew to love them more and more.

This is one of those series that gets better as the books go on. If you like mysteries with strong heroines then don’t let this one pass you by!

Throwback Thursday (16) October 18, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Cat on the Edge

Author: Shirley Rousseau Murphy

Publication Date: April 1, 1996

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

It’s been quite a week for Joe Grey. First the large, powerful feline discovers that, through some strange, inexplicable phenomenon, he now has the ability to understand human language. Then he discovers he can speak it as well! It’s a nightmare for a cat who’d prefer to sleep the day away carefree, but Joe can handle it. That is, until he has the misfortune to witness a murder in the alley behind Jolly’s Deli — and worse, to be seen witnessing it. With all of his nine lives suddenly at risk, Joe’s got no choice but to get to the bottom of the heinous crime — because his mouse-hunting days are over for good unless he can help bring a killer to justice.

I’m a cat lover. I’m not ashamed to admit it. But I’m not going to flock to just any book about cats. They can’t be too cute. They can’t be too silly. The Joe Grey books may have talking cats, but these fit the bill.

Joe Grey is a talking cat who is still a cat through and through. He is also a  man’s cat. Joe is full of character and he doesn’t back down for anyone. Especially humans. That’s what I liked about these books. The cats were cats! Bossy, sneaky yet still lovable.

The mysteries were great too. Not too violent, but still realistic and without any cartoon quality to them. As the series goes on, the cats sleuthing abilities evolves. It was great reading about how they fooled everyone.

This is probably my favorite mystery series. If you love cats, definitely give these books a try!

Throwback Thursday (13) September 27, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: The Woman in the Dunes

Author: Kobo Abe

Original Publication Date: April 16, 1991

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

One of the premier Japanese novels of the twentieth century, The Women in the Dunes combines the essence of myth, suspense, and the existential novel. In a remote seaside village, Niki Jumpei, a teacher and amateur entomologist, is held captive with a young woman at the bottom of a vast sand pit where, Sisyphus-like, they are pressed into shoveling off the ever-advancing sand dunes that threaten the village.

The Woman in the Dunes is an evocative novel about Niki Jumpei who gets trapped in a sand pit with a young woman. They have an endless job of shoveling sand to survive. Jumpei has several plans to escape the sand dunes but they never come to fruition. The sand wears down his soul and in the end it wears down his plans to escape.

This novel had a huge impact on how I thought about change and resolve in the face of adversity. Just how much could I stand in the face of an extreme challenge such as what Jumpei faced? We all face challenges in our way. How do we face them?

Kobo Abe did a masterful job of addressing these questions although he did so in a rather dark fashion. This will always be one of my favorite books and will also always be on my reread list.

Throwback Thursday (10) September 6, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: The Way of Shadows

Author: Brent Weeks

Publication Date: October 1, 2008

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

For Durzo Blint, assassination is an art—and he is the city’s most accomplished artist.

For Azoth, survival is precarious. Something you never take for granted. As a guild rat, he’s grown up in the slums, and learned to judge people quickly—and to take risks. Risks like apprenticing himself to Durzo Blint.

But to be accepted, Azoth must turn his back on his old life and embrace a new identity and name. As Kylar Stern, he must learn to navigate the assassins’ world of dangerous politics and strange magics—and cultivate a flair for death.

I absolutely loved the Night Angel Trilogy. This first book was my introduction to it. Brent Weeks’ world building is phenomenal. I can still remember how gritty and filthy the slums are where Azoth grew up. The plot to his trilogy is absorbing and entrancing. I swallowed this trilogy whole and wanted more when I was done. I had a such the trilogy hangover when I was done.

The character building is equally impressive. You get such a good sense of the many layers of Kylar Stern. The mystery of Durzo Blint is equally intriguing.  I also love that it’s about assassin’s. There’s something so sexy about assassins. I don’t know why. There just is.

If you like books about high fantasy, great world building, assassins, or just great writing, pick this one up.

Throwback Thursday (10) August 30, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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2 comments

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Outlander

Author: Diana Gabaldon

Original Publication Date: 1991

Publisher: Dell

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

The year is 1945. Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon–when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient stone circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach–an “outlander”–in a Scotland torn by war and raiding Highland clans in the year of Our Lord…1743.

Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire is catapulted into intrigues and dangers that may threaten her life…and shatter her heart. For here she meets James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, and becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire…and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.

I used to try to make it a point of reading the Outlander books once a year, but since I got my Kindle I got out of the habit. I seem to have fallen even more by the wayside since I started this blog, but these will still be some of my favorite books. These will also remain the greatest romance series for me. Jamie and Claire’s love grew realistically. It was never insta-love for them! But once it did grow it was strong and steadfast. Spanning over a hundred years through time and distance. I’ll always have a special place in my heart for this series. Lucky for me, Gabaldon isn’t done writing it!

Throwback Thursday (9) August 23, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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4 comments

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Stranger In A Strange Land

Author: Robert A. Heinlein

Original Publication Date: 1961

Publisher: Ace Trade

Available at: Amazon Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

It tells the story of Valentine Michael Smith, a human who has returned to Earth in early adulthood after being raised by Martians on the planet Mars.

The novel explores his interaction with—and the eventual transformation of—Earth culture. The title seems to be an allusion to the phrase in Exodus 2:22 (in the Biblical Book of Exodus).

Heinlein was my first foray into science fiction way back in the 80’s and it was a classic even then. Stranger in a Strange Land was one of my favorite titles of his. Valentine was a beloved character. He was equal parts naivete and wisdom. The idea of  being raised by an alien race on an alien planet seemed entirely plausible to me at the time. I didn’t question it like I would have today. Different subjects were explored like religion and sexuality. The book challenged my thinking and made my question my beliefs.

To date, this was one of the books that really changed my life and it still remains one of the books that I would like to revisit. It’s a true science fiction classic.

Throwback Thursday (8) August 16, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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1 comment so far

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Magic’s Pawn

Author: Mercedes Lackey

Series: Heralds of Valdemar, The Last Herald-Mage Trilogy

Original Publication Date: June 6, 1989

Available at: Amazon Barnes and Noble

Summary: Vanyel is exiled from his family home into the care of his domineering Aunt Savil at the High Court of Valdemar. It is under her care he will discover his hidden talents and true love.

The Heralds of Valdemar truly enchanted me, but the Last Herald-Mage Trilogy is my all-time favorite. It features Vanyel who is a homosexual which is something you don’t find very often in fantasy books. It also features Companions, horse-like partners to the mages that are sentient and empathetic beings.  I really enjoyed the addition of Companions, they added a bit of humanization that might not have been there.

Vanyel’s growth throughout these books was remarkable. He started off as a whiny, spoiled, over-privileged brat. He grew into a caring and considerate man. The other characters in the book had depth and layers to them that gave the book weight.

I haven’t read this book in quite a few years but it’s a book I’ve read more then once and will likely read again in the future!

Throwback Thursday (7) August 9, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: The Grand Sophy

Author: Georgette Heyer

Original Publication Date: 1950

Publisher: Putnam

Available at: Amazon Barnes and Noble

Summary:

Sophy descends upon her aunt and her cousins in a whirlwind to set matters right. Celia is in love with the wrong sort of man, Charles has becomes tyrannical and has an ill-matched fiancee, her uncles has becomes useless, and the younger children needs some freedom and fun. Before Sophy gets through, she will not only have stormed through the ton, but she will have stormed her way through Charles’ heart.

Georgette Heyer will always hold a special place in my heart. Her Regency era romances captured me from the first pages. Her romances are sweet and delightful without ever being sordid. There is a humor and a light-hearted fun to them that cheers me whenever I’m feeling down. They’re always my go to book whenever I’m blue.

The Grand Sophy has to be my favorite book of hers. Even though it’s about cousins falling in love, something I’m not a particular fan of, I did fall in love with Sophy. She’s spirited without being too perky. She’s spunky without losing her femininity. She’s assertive without being bossy. This is quite a feat in the Regency era.

Charles is something of a grump. He does have moments of levity despite himself. In those moments you learn to truly love him. You learn that the years of shouldering the responsibilities of the whole family has worn on him. In this Sophy is his perfect match for she provides the humor and temperance to get through it all.

The other characters in the book are equally entertaining. There’s the distracting poet, the lovesick Celia, the silly aunt. They are numerous and varied. This is an endlessly entertaining book that I’ve read over and over again and plan on reading over and over again even more.

Throwback Thursday (6) August 2, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
Tags: ,
2 comments

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books.

It’s the nature of book blogging to focus mainly on new releases, but there are thousands of great books out there that haven’t seen the “New Releases” shelf in years. We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

You don’t have to be a book blogger to participate! You can put up a Throwback Thursday post on your non-bookish blog; or if you don’t have a blog at all, just use the comments to tell us about a book you remember fondly.

Here’s how it works:
1. Pick any book released more than 5 years ago. Adult, YA, Children’s; doesn’t matter. Any great book will do.
2. Write up a short summary of the book (include the title, author, and cover art) and an explanation of why you love it. Make sure to link back to The Housework Can Wait and Never Too Fond of Books in your post.
3. Link up your post at The Housework Can Wait or Never Too Fond of Books.
4. Visit as many blogs as you can, reminisce about books you loved, and discover some “new” books for your TBR list!

Title: Dead Until Dark

Author: Charlaine Harris

Original Publication Date: January 1, 2001

From Goodreads: Sookie Stackhouse is just a small-time cocktail waitress in small-town Louisiana. Until the vampire of her dreams walks into her life-and one of her coworkers checks out…. Maybe having a vampire for a boyfriend isn’t such a bright idea.

How I loved Sookie from the first pages of this book to the last. How I loved her quirkiness and her naivete.  I also loved Bill. He was so dark and mysterious. Yet so kind and gentlemanly. The rest of the cast of characters held a cornucopia of delights for me too. From Arlene to Eric. I loved them all.

It’s just too bad that the series couldn’t keep up the momentum. I wonder if it has to do with the HBO series True Blood coming on the scene? Whatever the reason, I fell out of love with Sookie despite the fact that I used to reread her books on a regular basis. Now her books only collect dust as her latest book is another disappointment.

It’s time to dust off those books! Those early books are just as good! Sookie is just as endearing! Bill is just as mysterious and romantic!

You just need to know when to stop.