Monday, April 12, 2010

Best Books from Spring Break read-a-thon

After eleven days of exploring, beach combing, and soaking up the Carolina sun as we downed sweet tea and hush puppies, we're finally back at home. It's pouring rain and everyone in my house is asleep. We may be back on the west coast, but our bodies haven't decided what time zone to follow.

Being away from home is the perfect time to squeeze in lots of reading, especially when you're stuck with a sluggish internet connection. I have no idea how I ever survived dial-up for as long as I did because on Friday when I tried to watch a three minute video, it turned into a 45-minute torture session. I'm not ashamed to say I gave up and went back to my books.

I finished six of the eight I brought along and three were absolute standouts.

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
You knew I was going to love this one, right? I had high expectations for this book (which can be dangerous!), but Maggie didn't disappoint. I seriously think someone should be teaching a course on brilliant character arcs, use of language and multiple pov's using her books as the texts. She seriously has it mastered. I don't want to give away too much here, but if you enjoyed Shiver, you are going to want to get your hands on this book as soon as it comes out in July.

Princess for Hire by Lindsey Leavitt
I love when an author surprises me and Lindsey absolutely did with this book. I expected a frothy sweet tween novel, a lighthearted beach read. But I was amazed by the depth she managed to give this character. This isn't just a teen romp with romance at its core. Princess for Hire speaks more to girl power, and learning to stand up for yourself and making a difference in people's lives. With an ode to her hometown of Las Vegas, an Amazon tribal dance and unexpected twists on princess lore, Lindsey has created a very impressive debut!


The Heart is Not a Size by Beth Kephart
I've enjoyed other books by Beth, but this one moved me like no other. Maybe the fact that I went on a similar journey in high school made the story that much more real for me. But even more than that, I felt like I knew these people. The friendship between Riley and Georgia, with all its flaws and blinders, felt so true to life. The way Beth let the story unfold, the secrets they kept from each other and even from themselves, their journey of discovery was beautifully written, totally heartfelt and definitely a must read. If you've never picked up a book by Beth, let this be your first.

16 comments:

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Welcome back, Sherrie!

Thanks for the great reviews. Now I want to read Princess for Hire and Linger.

Candyland said...

Ahh vacation...what is that again?
Welcome back.

Kelly said...

Welcome back, Sherrie! Wow, you read lots! I want to read Linger!!!! (I haven't read a Beth Kephart yet, need to check out her stuff!)

Anna said...

I was SO close to buying Princess for Hire the other day, but since I'd already spent my book budget for the month I decided to save it for another time. Your review made me even more eager to go back and get it!

storyqueen said...

Welcome back.

Mmm, hushpuppies and sweat tea!!

I am just starting my Spring Break, and though I have a lot of writing to do, I want to read, too!!

Trip to the library time!

Shelley

T. Anne said...

Great reads! I read "Looking for Alaska" on my spring break and it was soo enjoyable. I love YA!

Laura Pauling said...

Welcome back! I can't wait to read those books. Someday in the future.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I just added them to my wishlist! Thanks, Sherrie. And welcome back!! :-)

JEM said...

So jealous of your spring break. I seem to distantly recall a concept called spring break, but it was so long ago...

Becky Levine said...

These are all going on my list. What you said about Princess for Hire is just what I felt when I read Alibi Junior High this week--I love getting surprised that way. And HOW did you get your hands on an early copy of LINGER??

Welcome home!

Lori W. said...

You are aware of our tradition of book swapping because I just about fell out of my chair when I saw you have Linger?! Dibs! What do you want me to buy and bring for you because I need to read these! You saw that I didn't wait for my turn for Marcelo, right? Got that one on my one based on your review.

Solvang Sherrie said...

Stina: Thanks -- hope you enjoy them!

Candy: Vacation is that space of time where you eat too much, spend too much, and take lots of photos to prove it :)

Kelly: Long plane flights make it easy. That and the fact that my kids are willing to swim in 60 degree water and I am not!

Anna: Get it next time -- it's a good book!

Shelley: Doesn't the south have great food? Have fun reading and writing on your break.

T.Anne: I've heard good things about that book. I'll have to add it to the list :)

Laura: Don't worry -- I've got a huge list of books to read sometime in the future!

Shannon: I have a feeling your list is as long as mine!

JEM: One of the bonuses of having kids around -- forced breaks :)

Becky: I haven't heard of Alibi Jr. High. Great title though! My lovely friends at The Book Loft in Solvang hooked me up with Linger. I love my local indie!

Lori: Wasn't Marcello wonderful, too? I must write a review on it. As for Linger, I only got it on loan. Sorry!

Tess said...

how'd you get an advance copy of linger? how How HOW?! okay, I'll stop the tantrum. ;)

Cindy Shortt said...

Can't wait to read them.... thanks.

Barrie said...

The Heart Is Not a Size--in my TBR pile. :)

Beth Kephart said...

Thank you — so much. I hang my head in shame that I did not know this was here. The hidden jewels of the world, waiting to be discovered.

I'd love to know about YOUR trip.

b

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