Blog for Stephanie Bryant, a writer with too many hobbies and not enough time.

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May-June 2008: Book Reviews

I missed the ends of May and June for my reading write-ups, so I’m posting them all right here, in one long round-up:

#26

Guilty Pleasure

Romance novel, enjoyable, but not terribly memorable.

#27


Stephanie Pearl-McPhee Casts Off!

I love Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, and this is a good one. I listened to it on audiobook.

#28


Naughty Neighbors

Amusing and cute Evanovich romance.

#29


The Lies of Locke Lamora, by Scott Lynch

This is a great new world, new storyline, new characters– good fantasy fiction to enjoy, and definitely recommended.

#30


It’s My Party and I’ll Knit If I Want To! (Food, Family & Friends Cookbook), by Sharon Aris

Kind of a sociological study of the development of the knitting craze.

#31


Straight to the Heart (Kimani Romance), by Michelle Monkou

Good contemporary romance with a hip-hop/music star scene.

#32


Lady Susan, by Jane Austen

Told in letters, this is an unusual Austen novel in that the title character is kind of, well, a bitch.

#33:


The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror, by Christopher Moore

Some angels are mighty and powerful. And some are, well…. “special.” This was a really cute novel, especially when paired with other heartwarming stories, like Fido.

#34:


Not Enough Indians, by Harry Shearer

Shearer is the voice of several characters on The Simpsons, so when listening to the audiobook, I kept expecting Principal Skinner to make an appearance. But this novel is a cute story about Indian gaming, casino mobsters, and fake tribes.

#35:


Blue Dahlia(In the Garden, Book 1), by Nora Roberts

A romance novel taking place at a gardening store. It kind of weirded me out that, in this novel, the protagonist loses her husband in September of 2001, to a commuter plane crash. One assumes the crash happened between the 1st and 10th of the month, since no planes flew after the 11th for at least 2 weeks, and you simply would not have someone on a commuter flight without a lot of anxiety about it. I’ve encountered this before, where the author placed the novel somewhere just before or after the “fateful day” and makes no reference to the World Trade towers, Pentagon, etc. I know in a romance novel, you don’t want to give a story too much serious weight, but if that’s the case, it’s pretty simple: don’t set the plane crash in September of 2001. Put it in May. Or Fall of 2002. or Fall of 2000. It’s not like the year is important to the rest of the story. By placing the story at the same time as this big horrible event and not addressing it– it just seems wrong.

The rest of the story is a fine romance novel with an old Southern twist.

World’s Largest Pecan

My sister and her 2 adorable children are coming to visit me tomorrow, having driven all the way from Brunswick, Missouri. Brunswick, according to the post card they sent me before they left, is home to the World’s Largest Pecan, on Highway 24. It’s a 12′ long statue of the James Pecan Farms Starking Hardy Giant pecan.
[World’s Largest Pecan was originally posted to my blog at ustravel.today.com. Read the full article there!]

Destination: Lake George, New York

“We’re in New York” conjures in most minds images of our ungainly apartment-on-wheels navigating crowded, trafficked streets, surrounded by yellow cabs and irate urbanites.

We are not in that New York this month. We are in the other New York. They call it “upstate,” but in reality, this New York represents more of the New York we’ve seen than the urbanoscape of New York City.

We’ve been in Warrensburg, NY for the last month. Warrensburg is up Interstate 87, just inside the border of the Adirondack State Park. When you look at a map of the state of New York, there’s this big “forehead” of space in the north. About 90% of that is the Adirondack State Park. On maps, it’s a green patch bordered by Interstates. In reality… it’s much the same, and more.
[Destination: Lake George, New York was originally posted to my blog at ustravel.today.com. Read the full article there!]

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