Sunday, September 6, 2015

Burns Book Challenge 2015: Completed!

I finished the challenge! WOOOO! I am including all my final books read but the newer ones I have not posted about yet are in red. The stars (*= poor, **= good, ***= great).

1. Storm Front by Jim Butcher **(Dresden Files series about a wizard PI in Chicago- funny!) 
2. The Giver by Lois Lowry ** (Have not seen the movie, should I?)
3. Anonymous Rex by Eric Garcia ** (How could I not pick the cover?! It is neon green with a dino in a duster. Plus Dave Berry endorsed it.)
4. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell ** (The ending was kinda "meh" for me, tainting the story a bit.)
5. The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordon *** (The Heroes of Olympus series rocked, not technically published this year but October of 2014 is dern close enough).
6. The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer *** (Really interesting book about a boy clone and nature vs nurture).
7. Nightbird by Alice Hoffman ** (Quick enticing read that makes me want to bake Pink Apple pies... and I just might too- stellar author. Her book The Dovekeepers is why I read this. She wrote Practical Magic too).
8. The Bane Chronicles by Cassandra Clare (Not rating yet because this is my current read. Is that cheating? Thank you Tricia for lending it to me!!)
9. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt ** (Disturbing, poignant, but again the ending ruined it. Too much philosophical pining for my liking.)

10. Elizabeth I by Margaret George ** (This beast took me about 4-5 weeks to read. It offered a view of her life in the last 20 or so years of her reign.)

11. The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan ** (See #5).
12. Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater ** (The third book from the Raven Cycle but left ho-hum, hoping the final book will make up for what this one lacked. I do recommend the series for YA fun. This has witches so it counts.)
13. Cinder by Marissa Meyer ** (Neat fairytale twist where Cinderella is a cyborg and aliens form the moon come to Earth to rule.)
14. Cinnamon Skin by John D. MacDonald *** (Because everyone- especially Native Floridians- needs to read some Travis McGee).

15. Odes to Common Things by Pablo Neruda*** (Poetry, who'da thunk it. I loved it. In fact so much I am sharing an excerpt with you. Because it is my blog. And I can.)
16. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant *** (I learned about this book from Lynda through posting about this challenge, I am so so glad I read it. What a heart wrenching point of view of Jacob and Joseph's stories viewed through the women in their lives.)
17. Four Seasons of Marriage by Gary Chapman ** (It made me smarter about my marriage, the most important question it gave me was to ask Adam "What can I do to make you feel more loved?" We ask each other that from time to time and it has moved mountains.)
18. The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon *** (A story built around a mentally handicapped institute held white woman and her deaf African American lover who fight to keep their love and sweet baby child safe from the dreaded hospital they run from. Read this.)
19. Anne of Green Gabels by L.M. Montgomery** (Late to the party on this one I know, but there are tons I never read in school that others seem to have read. Cute heart warming story that made me smile and gaze on my own spunky girls with affection.)

20.The Help by Kathryn Stockett *** (Literally the last person on Earth to read this. It was worth the hype.)
21. The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things by Carolyn Mackler** (The adolescent feminine power that developed kept me turning the pages on an otherwise so-so story. Opening line "Froggy Welsh the Fourth is trying to get up my shirt.")
22. The Real Boy by Anne Ursu*** (A beautifully written and illustrated story about an alternate telling of Pinocchio.)
23. Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan ** (Very interesting.)
24. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton *** (I hemmed and hawed about re-reading something, but once I spotted this at the library for $0.25 I knew. I forgot just how incredible this book is. Way different than the movie, plus reading it at 13 is way different than reading it at 34).
25. The Hound of Baskervilles by Sir Arther Conan Doyle*** (I may be biased but as a huge Sherlock fan, I loved this story. Published in 1902, I think this fits as over 10 years old.)
26. Abundance, a novel of Marie Antoinette by Sena Jeter Naslund *** (Based on a true story, but one I have never really learned about in school. What a poignant story.)

It was a challenge to find books that fit the bill but in the end I ended up enjoying just about everything I read. Do any of these books stick out to you? Something you really enjoyed or would like to read? How has your book reading come along this year? I plan on cracking open all the other discount library books I bought soon. I just wrapped up The Perfume Lover and it consumed me like a flame. 

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