Saturday, June 25, 2011

Summer '11 - 12 in 12 challenge

Okay, I know NEXT year is 2012, but THIS year before the end of the school year I was given a challenge called 12 in 12. Now, let's see if I can remember all 12 of the books I am supposed to read this summer.

2 - Texas Lone Star Books
     a. The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman
     b. Payback Time (still reading - very good) by Carl Deuker
2 - Graphic Novels
     a. CSI: Intern at Your Own Risk by Sekou Hamilton
     b. Troublemaker by Janet Evanovich
1 - Adult Bestseller
      a. ?????? (don't know what I will choose yet...saving it for next to last)
1 - Genre you usually don't read
      a. On a Pale Horse (fantasy) by Piers Anthony
2 - E-books
      a. Stupid History by Leland Gregory
      b. An Ice Cold Grave by Charlaine Harris
1 - Preview book for 2011-2012 school year
      a. Oh, Harry by Maxine Kumin
1 - Book of choice
      a. ?????? (don't know what I will choose yet....saving it for last)
2 - Texas Bluebonnet Books
      a. Mirror Mirror by Marilyn Singer
      b. The Case of the Case of the Mistaken Identity by Mac Barnett

Okay, needless to say, I didn't need a challenge to get me to read this summer. In fact I have been waiting all school year to have more time to read. This challenge did provide me with the opportunity to read some great books I might not have otherwise read, for instance On a Pale Horse.
On a Pale Horse
by Piers Anthony
Fantasy is not necessarily a genre I jump up to read. I am more the suspense/ thriller reader. My husband, however, loves fantasy. When I was pregnant with our son he started reading one of  the David Eddings Belgariad books. I could not stay awake to listen. It was just not my thing. When I showed him this challenge he told me he would choose the book for the genre not usually read category (yes, he knows me and my reading habits that's what comes with both of us being a librarian). This is the book he chose. I have to admit it was a good read. At first I was reluctant to read the book simply because of the cover. I truly believe fantasy books have turned me off for all of these years because of the cover picture. I know you are not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but come on who doesn't?!? I was surprised how this book grabbed me. It was fascinating to read about all of Death's adventures. I was intrigued by the job and really hope my soul is able to leave my body before the pain of death overtakes me. Weird, yes, but this book really makes you think about your own mortality. I'm trying to decide if I want to read any of the other books in this series.

It was a bit difficult for me to choose the two Texas Lone Star books I wanted to read. I will admit there were not too many on the list that just grabbed me. Thankfully two of them did right away. The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman and Payback Time by Carl Deuker.

The Grimm Legacy
by Polly Shulman
I have actually already written about The Grimm Legacy but it really was a great book. I wish the ending had been left open for a sequel. It was a very unique combination of The Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg, the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, and The Librarian movies from Turner Network Television starring Noah Wyle. I love the way Ms. Shulman weaves the characters around fairy tale objects. What a wonderful idea. I know I said before I don't usually read fantasy, maybe I was wrong...but I am still listing On a Pale Horse for this part of the challenge!
Payback Time
by Carl Deuker

I chose Payback Time BECAUSE of the cover! I LOVE football and it seemed this book would have something to do with my favorite sport. I am currently reading this book (started this afternoon and I am almost 100 pages in - for me that is great because I am a slow reader) so I am not going to write about it yet. Next time.

An Ice Cold Grave
by Charlaine Harris
 Since I have had a Nook for over a year now, the e-book part of the challenge was fairly easy. I chose books I have been wanting to read. A lot of people love Charlaine Harris for her Sookie Stackhouse books,  the basis for the HBO True Blood series. I have read a few of these books, but I have to admit I am not really on the vampire bandwagon. I have read the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer, but I think I might have had my fill of vampires for a while. I love the Harper Connelly series by Charlaine Harris. An Ice Cold Grave is the 3rd book in this series about a young woman who can locate the dead after being struck by lightning. This book takes place in North Carolina.

Stupid History
by Leland Gregory
The next e-book I chose was actually one I saw on the free book site and grabbed because it sounded like something I would like to read. Stupid History: Tales of Stupidity, Strangeness, and Mythconceptions Throughout the Ages by Leland Gregory. When I saw how many pages this book had, I really thought it was going to take me a long time to read (not something I was too excited about because I wanted to finish this challenge so I could read what I want to read this if I don't have a choice on all of these titles). This was not the case at all. I finished it in one day! It was such a great book that goes through all of the history we think we know and tells what really happened! I'm sure if high school students were to read a book like this instead of a text book they would remember these stories a lot longer than the incorrect information we have been learning all of these years.

CSI: Intern at Your Own Risk
by Sekou Hamilton
When it comes to graphic novels I have never been a fan. In fact the closest I have really ever gotten to reading a graphic novel (other than graphic picture books) has been Mad magazine. Even then I would skip over the big sections of "comic book like" stories. I just am not into that kind of reading (maybe that should have been the genre I don't usually read?!?). I went to Half Priced Books in order to look for two graphic novels. I thought I had hit the jackpot when I found two right away. CSI: Intern at Your Own Risk and Troublemaker. I was correct on one count. I enjoyed the CSI story. It was very much like the television series, which I love.

by Janet & Alex Evanovich
The same can not be said for Troublemaker by Janet & Alex Evanovich. I really wanted to like this graphic novel. I have heard from so many of my friends who love her Stephanie Plum series of books, but this series (this is the first in the Barnaby and Hooker series) just did not do anything for me. I didn't feel the book ended. I understand it is the first book in a series, but it seems that each book should have an ending so you don't have to buy the next book in order for the story to end. You should be able to finish this portion of the story and then let something else happen in the next book. I was very disappointed. Now I'm not sure if I really want to read any of her other books. However being the reader that I am, I probably will read at least one of the Plum books.

There are two books left for me to choose as I complete this challenge. I know what I WANT them to be, but I know I will not read them because they are both over 1200 pages. I'm sure I will find something to fill these two blanks. I really wanted to be finished with this challenge before July so I guess I better stop blogging and get to reading!