My goal for this year is to read 36 books - 3 a month - after only finishing 24 last year. I'm slightly ahead of schedule, with 12 books completed so far in mid-April. Here's what I've finished in the last month.
Jack: The True Story of Jack and the Beanstalk by Liesl ShurtliffI received this middle-grade/juvenile book as an Advanced Reader ebook through NetGalley (that's my Kindle in the photo above!). It's "release date" is actually today. I was drawn to the adventurous cover of Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin when it came out last year, and enjoyed Shurtliff's telling of the old fairy tale. Again in Jack, the author takes a relatively short story and adds characters, wonderful development of those characters, and sub-plots to the original tale. Jack is a typical teenage boy who can be a bit of a troublemaker, but longs to live up to his name - he was named after his great-great...great-grandfather Jack the Giant Slayer. I loved the message that came across: troubles are not always what we assume based on what little knowledge we might have. I also loved noticing the connections between this story and Rump, though the books can easily be read separately. I've heard the next book will be Red: The True Story of Red Riding Hood and I can't wait!
Champion by Marie LuBook 3 in the Legend Trilogy - I'm reading these as part of the Young Adult Book & Movie Club. After what I said about Prodigy last month, I wasn't sure how the end of the story would go. In fact I wasn't even sure if I wanted to start this one right away after finishing Prodigy (since Champion is the April-read in the book club). But I did, and I finished it in something like two days. And I'm glad I was alone when I read the ending because I seriously cried. It's been a long time since I cried from a book. I won't say anything else about the plot, but I do think it was a great conclusion to a lot of conflict. So if you weren't a fan of Prodigy either, be sure to finish the series.
The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst"Are you living with the stress of an overwhelmed schedule and aching with the sadness of an underwhelmed soul? Lysa TerKeurst is learning that there is a big difference between saying yes to everyone and saying yes to God..." In the midst of deciding whether or not to leave my job at the library, I heard about this book and borrowed it from a friend. WOW. There was so much quotable material in every chapter I wanted to underline (though I refrained because it wasn't my book!) and I posted almost daily on Facebook the things that really stuck out to me. This is definitely going on my list of books I actually want to buy someday -- which is something that doesn't happen often (I'm usually a read-it-once kind of girl).
Did not finish:At Home in Mitford by Jan Karon
When I was done with the Legend series and wanted something lighter to read, a few people suggested the Mitford series. The first one was available through Overdrive from my library, so I started it. And I just could not get into it. I really tried. I got just about half way through before giving up and moving on. I really wanted to like it, since it's a bestselling series and so many people I know have read and loved them. But overall I think my biggest issue with it was that I didn't feel any sense of major plotline, or conflict that needed to be resolved. I felt like each chapter was practically a stand-alone short story. A few were obviously intertwined together, but I figured by halfway I should have some sense of the overall direction the book was going, besides "life in a small town". Sorry friends! I really really did try!!
Linking up today with Anne at Modern Mrs. Darcy.
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