Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Buddy: How a Rooster Made Me a Family Man by Brian McGrory

Started: 1/26/14
Finished: 1/28/14
Year: 2013
Pages: 328
Genre: Memoir
Grade: B
Reason for reading: review for Librarything.com
Blurb (from back cover): "Brian McGrory thought he had it all figured out: a great job, a condo in Back Bay, and his beloved golden retriever Harry by his side. But after Harry's death, McGrory's life as a bachelor takes quite the turn. He falls in love with Harry's veterinarian, Pam, and leaves the city for life in the suburbs with Pam's family and their two dogs, two cats, two rabbits, and Buddy-the self-assured family rooster who hates Brian's guts.
"These things never go as easily as they should. The commute is long, the kids are wary, and Buddy is constantly poised to attack. But rather than accept defeat, Brian eventually sees that Buddy shares the kind of extraordinary relationship with Pam and the girls that he wants for himself. Funnily enough, it's the rooster's tenacious devotion to the family that encourages a change in Brian's perspective, and before long, the archenemy becomes his inspiration, helping Brian evolve into a true family man."
Opinion: It is hard to believe that a rooster of all things could help someone grow into becoming a family man...a life very different than what was being led by McGrory.  The beginning tells of the love that McGrory had for his dog, Harry which hit home for this reader.  The antics with Buddy, the rooster, were amusing. Overall, a fun read.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Dexter by Design by Jeff Lindsay

Started: 1/22/14
Finished: 1/26/14
Year: 2009
Pages: 285
Genre: Suspense
Grade: B-
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from book jacket): "Back from his surprisingly glorious honeymoon in Paris, Miami blood spatter analyst Dexter Morgan is one step closer to perfecting his human disguise. Married life feels almost normal, and even seems to agree with him: he's a devoted husband who plays Kick the Can with his little Dexters-in-training, Astor and Cody; his stomach is full; and his homicidal hobbies are nicely under control. But old habits die hard....and Dexter's work for the Miami Police Department never fails to offer up new playmates-bad men who appeal to his offbeat and unshakable sense of justice.
"The discovery of a corpse, artfully arranged in a very public place, sends shock waves through both the Miami Police Department and the tourist industry alike. And when more of these 'decorative projects' are displayed around Miami, Dexter and his Dark Passenger can't help but lend their expertise and get involved. Miami's finest, led be Dex's surly sister, Deborah, realize they've got a terrfying new serial killer on the loose...and Dexter, of course, is back in business."
Opinion: This book didn't seem as tigh as Lindsay's previous Dexter novels. It seems that all of a sudden certain people were around and I found myself rereading pages to make sure I didn't miss anything. Still a rather interesting story line with Dexter is found to be on the killer's sight.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Work with Me: The 8 Blind Spots Between Men and Women in Business by Barbara Annis & John Gray

Started: 1/15/14
Finished: 1/20/14
Pages: 249
Year: 2013
Genre: Business/psychology
Grade: B
Reason for reading: review for The Library Thing
Blurb (from book jacket): Each day, men and women looking to bring their best to work are often challenged by false assumptions and mistaken opinions about the other gender-persistent blind spots that frequently result in misunderstandings and miscommunication, affecting their ability to find success and satisfaction in their work lives as well as in their personal lives."
Opinion: This book takes an in-depth look at how men and women communicate and how it effects them in the work place. It includes a scientific look and also looks at how to improve communication among the sexes.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Hard Eight by Janet Evanovich

Started: 1/5/14
Finished 1/12/14
Year: 2002
Pages: 311
Genre: Mystery
Grade: B
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from book jacket): "Fugitive Apprehension Agent Stephanie Plus has a big problem on her hands: seven-year-old Annie Soder and her mother, Evelyn, have disappeared. Evelyn's estranged husband, Steven, a shady owner of a seedy bar, is not at all happy. During the divorce proceedings, he and Evelyn signed a child custody bond, and Steve is demanding the money guaranteed by the bond to find Annie. The money was secured by a mortgage on Evelyn's grandmother's house, and the True Blue Bonds Bail Agency wants to take possession of the house."
Blurb: Some laugh out loud moments that Stephanie gets herself caught up in. A slight twist to the ending that I wasn't expecting.

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

Started: 12/29/13
Finished: 1/5/14
Year: 2012
Pages: 315
Genre: biography/memoir
Grade: A-
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from book jacket): "A powerful, blazingly honest memoir: the story of an eleven-hundred-mile solo hike that broke down a young woman reeling from catastrophe-and built her back up again.
"At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother's death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life: to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State-and to do it alone. She had no experience as a long-distance hiker, and the trail was little more than 'an idea, vague and outlandish and full of promise.' But it was a promise of piecing back together a life that had come undone."
Opinion: A great memoir that makes me want to see the West Coast mountains more than I already did. I give Cheryl a lot of credit for taking this adventure on by herself. Not many would have been able to do it.