Monday, December 31, 2007

The Bridge of San Luis Rey

The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder

1928 Pulitzer Prize

Brother Juniper is a monk who witnesses the collapse of the rope bridge between Lima and Cuzco broke and plunged five people to death in the gorge below. He immediately wonders why the disaster happened to that particular five people. He sets out on an investigation into their lives to try to find out if they deserved their fate.

I enjoyed the book, but I didn't get what the big Pulitzer whoopty-do was about.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Mr. Ives' Christmas

Mr. Ives' Christmas
by Oscar Hijuelos

"Mr. Ives' Christmas" is about a father mourning the loss of his son. The boy was 17 and about to enter the priesthood when he is shot by a 14 year old boy as he is leaving choir practice.

The book follows Mr. Ives through decades from his adoption in the 1920's until he's in his 70's. The main focus of the book is his attempts to come to terms with the death of his son. Since he is a good-hearted man, he even has a brief correspondence with the killer. But as the years go by, he is becoming more withdrawn from the life he has. But he hods on to his spirituality. He knows it's the only thing that will get him through to the end.

I thought this was a very good book. It makes the point that compassion is desperately needed in our lives.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Locket

The Locket
by Richard Paul Evans

"The Locket" is a sweet little story about forgiving and second chances.
Michael Keddington is a 22-year old college student who had to leave school to care for his dying mother. After her death, Michael takes a job in a nursing home until he can get a scholarship to go back to school.

He immediately connects with a reclusive woman, Esther. She slowly opens to him and tells him of her life and her missed chance at love.

Then tragedy strikes the nursing home and one of the residents dies after being abused. And Michael is blamed and must face trial.

I really enjoyed this book. If you liked "Tuesdays with Morrie" you'll like this one.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

O Pioneers!

O Pioneers!
by Willa Cather

"O Pioneers!" tells the story of a family on the prairie in Kansas at the turn of the 20th century. It opens shortly before the death of John Bergson. Upon his death, the oldest of his children, Alexandra, takes charge. This doesn't prove easy for her in a male dominated world.

As the hard winters force most of the neighbors to sell out and look for greener pastures, Alexandra decides to buy up the surrounding land. This was difficult to sell to her brothers, but proves worth the risk.

"O Pioneers" follows the family into the next century. I found it a very easy book to read. I recommend it to all those who are looking for a good story about frontier life.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Booking Through Thursday-Catalog

Booking Through Thursday

Do you use any of the online book-cataloguing sites, like Library Thing or Shelfari? Why or why not? (Or . . . do you have absolutely no idea what I’m talking to?? (grin))

If not an online catalog, do you use any other method to catalog your book collection? Excel spreadsheets, index cards, a notebook, anything?

I'm a Lifetime paid member of LibraryThing. I have all of my books listed there. Except my cookbooks. Maybe someday when I get some energy I'll do those too. And I need to spend some time writing more comments.

I'm also in goodreads, but on that site all I'm doing is listed the books I've read and giving the 1 to 5 star rating.

And I've also got a spreadsheet on Google for my TBR and challenges, but I haven't figured out how to post it where people can see it.

Monday, December 3, 2007

What Holiday Are You?

You Are Thanksgiving

You are a bit of a homebody who enjoys being in the company of people you love.

It doesn't take a lot to make you happy. You're enjoying life as it is.

You have many blessings in your life, and you are grateful for each one.

You believe that life is about what you *do* have. You feel like you have enough of the good stuff.

What makes you celebrate: Family, friends, and the changing of the seasons.

At holiday get togethers, you do best as: The host of the party

On a holiday, you're the one most likely to: Spend so much energy preparing that it's a full time job

Yeah, I pretty much agree with the personality assessment. I love to bake and holidays give me a chance to try fancy stuff. Thanks to Good housekeeping and Taste of Home online recipes, I get to experiment on my family every holiday.