Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Saturday, March 27, 2010
Friday, March 26, 2010
It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.
A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.
Review: After the first chapter or two, I was immediately sucked in and I have to say that Along for the Ride is, I think, my favorite Sarah Dessen book right after This Lullaby.
Auden has always been academically smart as both her parents are proffesors and all. She hasn't had much of a social life. She goes to visit her dad and his new wife and her new baby sister for the summer. She begins working at her stepmother's botique shop and becomes friends with the other girls there.
There were so many things I enjoyed about this book . I loved the relationship between Auden and her brother, Hollis. I love great sibling interaction. I loved Audens feminist mindset!! I definitely caught on to her remarks! I could relate to that and a some other things. Like, the insomnia that both Eli and Auden faced. The romance was sweet. I loved parts with them together.
Sarah Dessen does it again! I can always count on her books to always get me in a good reading mood! If you haven't read Sarah Dessen, this is a great one to pick up!
Thursday, March 25, 2010
(I'm not going to do the favorite characters, etc since the book was short.)
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
It's about a girl. It's about a boy. It's about Parisian boarding school, almond-scented macarons, famous cemeteries, and cinemaphiles. It's about heartache. And it's about true love.
Sunday, March 21, 2010
- The challenge starts on January 1st 2010 and ends on December 31st (but we don't mind you starting early.)
- You don't have to make a list beforehand (but you can, of course! Lists are great because they give ideas to people who aren't sure what to read. And if you do make one, don't feel forced to stick to it!)
- We simplified the levels of participation: you can be a Beginner (3 Comics or Graphic Novels), Intermediate(3-10) or an Expert (10+). You're more than free to adjust your level of participation after the challenge has begun.
- There will be mini-challenges! Look for a post with more info on that soon.
- Overlaps with other challenges are totally fine.
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
Hot Pink Cake Adapted from Giulia Melucci’s novel I loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti
Ingredients: 2 cups sugar 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour 3/4 cups cocoa powder (the better the quality, the better the cake; I am devoted to Valrhona, but Hershey’s is fine) 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda 1 teaspoon salt 2 eggs, left out of the fridge for about 30 minutes 1 stick butter, melted and cooled slightly 1 cup whole milk 2 teaspoons vanilla 1 cup boiling water
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter and flour twp 8-inch baking pans and line with parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Add eggs, butter, milk, and vanilla and beat at medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes, until all ingredients are combined and the cocoa bits are smoothed out. Stir in the boiling water. Pour batter into pans and bake at 350 degrees until a cake tester comes out with moist crumbs, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in pans, then transfer to cooking racks. Wait until the cakes have cooled completely before frosting.
For the Frosting: 1 stick very soft butter 1 pound confectioners’ sugar 3 to 4 tablespoons milk 1 teaspoon vanilla A little too much red food dye
Mix all ingredients with an electric mixer at low speed until creamy. Add more milk if necessary. The trick is for the icing to be not too thin and not too goopy.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Summary: "Jacob Hunt is a teenage boy with Asperger's syndrome. He's hopeless at reading social cues or expressing himself well to others, and like many kids with AS, Jacob has a special focus on one subject -- in his case, forensic analysis. He's always showing up at crime scenes, thanks to the police scanner he keeps in his room, and telling the cops what they need to do...and he's usually right. But then his town is rocked by a terrible murder and, for a change, the police come to Jacob with questions. All of the hallmark behaviors of Asperger's -- not looking someone in the eye, stimulatory tics and twitches, flat affect -- can look a lot like guilt to law enforcement personnel. Suddenly, Jacob and his family, who only want to fit in, feel the spotlight shining directly on them. For his mother, Emma, it's a brutal reminder of the intolerance and misunderstanding that always threaten her family. For his brother, Theo, it's another indication of why nothing is normal because of Jacob. And over this small family the soul-searing question looms: Did Jacob commit murder?"
Review: I have only read a couple of Jodi Picoult's books but I am so hooked on them! I love how her books deal with important issues and they are done wonderfully!
After reading House Rules I now know a lot more about Asperger's syndrome. While reading the book you can tell how much time and effort that Jodi spent researching this syndrome. I honestly had never really thought about the legal system and how if you were to have autism or something it could put one in an extremely serious place. Jacob, an eighteen year old boy with Asperger's, loves forensic analysis. He is into it, he even goes to the sites of crime scenes. When he is suddenly accused of murder he must convince the jury that he is innocent.
I like how Jodi Picoult has the different POV. Not only do we get to see Jacob's, but we see four other POV. I think this is a great addition to the book!
I will admit though, the ending wasn't that surprising for me. I kind of figured it out earlier but I still thought that the ending was just incredibly good. Another thing that I really, really enjoyed was how for the start of each chapter there is information on some murder mystery case in history. Like Jacob, I am very much into that sort of thing. I will watch a JonBenett Ramsey documentary on A&E and then watch more cases on the ID channel and to top it all off, I am obsessed with the show Criminal Minds (which I'm watching right this moment.)
I highly recommend this book to those wanting to know more about Asperger's or the legal system or just likes Adult Fiction, to read this book! I got the chance to see Jodi Picoult on Saturday and get my book signed! To read more about my experience at the book event GO HERE.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
"Each book you read must fit in to the subject of one the classes. You do not have to read books that fit all the subjects. Each book equals one point (toward the house cup)." If you read a Harry Potter book that is worth 25 pts.
Stargirl. From the day she arrives at quiet Mica High in a burst of color and sound, the hallways hum with the murmur of “Stargirl, Stargirl.” She captures Leo Borlock’s heart with just one smile. She sparks a school-spirit revolution with just one cheer. The students of Mica High are enchanted. At first. Then they turn on her. Stargirl is suddenly shunned for everything that makes her different, and Leo, panicked and desperate with love, urges her to become the very thing that can destroy her: normal. In this celebration of nonconformity, Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli weaves a tense, emotional tale about the perils of popularity and the thrill and inspiration of first love.
Saturday, March 13, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010