OSR: July 2011

I slowed things down a bit in July when I decided to reread (for the third or fourth time) East of Eden, and I like mentioned last week, that is a book to savor. So I finished these books within the first two weeks of July.

Sarah's KeySarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was really compelled during the first half. I loved how the author told Sarah's story in tandem with Julia's research. When Sarah's narration abruptly ended, however, I was a little disappointed in how the rest of the story panned out. I liked Julia well enough, but I didn't enjoy her narration on its own nearly as much as I did when it worked with Sarah's telling.

I really appreciated this account of the Vel' D'Hiv, especially since I hadn't known about that piece of French history. Despite the interesting historic aspect, I found the conclusion unsettling and a little depressing. This book was good but didn't quite live up to its potential.

Mindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with FoodMindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food by Jan Chozen Bays

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Coming from a belief system that values the human body, I found the concept of mindful eating attractive. Instead of focusing on "good" and "bad" foods, the author encourages becoming in tune with the body and what it needs and wants. Bays advocates eating slowly and purposefully, stopping when you're satisfied instead of bursting at the seams. While some of the theories proposed in this book are a little too new age for me, I like the idea of evaluating the different types of hunger we feel and the goal of appreciating and valuing eating instead of controlling it.

Take what you want from this book, and don't feel bad about disregarding the rest.

Little BeeLittle Bee by Chris Cleave

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I debated between giving this book 3 or 4 stars. How about 3.75? I ended up liking the story and found the perspective of a refugee girl fascinating. I had a harder time liking Sarah's narration, because I just have a hard time sympathizing with adulterous protagonists. I did end up liking Sarah at the end, but it took me a while to get there. The writing was original and thoughtful, and the message of hope at the end was empowering. Little Bee exposed me to a world I know little of, and I appreciated that.

BossypantsBossypants by Tina Fey

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If you're a 30 Rock or SNL fan, you should read this. (And really, if you aren't a fan of those shows, I don't know what would draw you to this book in the first place.) Sure she gets up on her soapbox a few times, but it's her memoir, so really we can't blame her on that one. The best part about this book? Bossypants reminds us that it's way more fun to laugh at yourself than to take yourself too seriously.

And for the record, I plan on tuning in to 30 Rock's sixth season this fall. Can't wait.

View all my reviews

Yesterday I realized that I was only about 100 pages away from finishing East of Eden, and I've been so swept away by this book for the past few weeks that I haven't given thought to what I'm going to read next! I promptly put four books on hold at the library for pickup today or tomorrow. Close call, guys.

{If you don't want to wait to September to read the East of Eden review on the blog, be sure to click on the link at the bottom of the post that says "View all my reviews." The review should be up today or tomorrow.}


A Mitton said...

My mom said something very similar about Sarah's Key. I think she read it for her book club.

And Mindful Eating is intriguing to me. I've been thinking a lot about how the body knows what it wants/needs health-wise lately, so I kind of want to find this book. If I weren't afraid of the library hating me, I'd go pick it up after work. (Way way way overdue books, I'm terrible. I also have library fines in three states.)

Shilah said...

My sister bought me that Little Bee book about the time i met Craig and i STILL have not read it. The fact that the back and inside covers gave NOTHING away terrified me. I've always wished the covers would be less revealing but i was completely shocked when it actually happened. I'm also so horrible at finding time to read, but i think if it was a threeish almost four in your book [pun not intended, but could've been intended] then i should probably just get to it and give it a try! It seemed like an easy read, i think i read the very first chapter and it felt fast-paced. And like you said, it seemed to deal with the type of world we're not completely familiar with but i still love to read about.

Jill said...

I felt the same way about Sarah's Key and Little Bee.

I haven't read Bossy Pants, but I adore Tina Fey/Liz Lemon so I know I'd love it.

John Wood said...

I have only seen up to the 4th season!! When does the newest one start and does hulu plus have season 5?

michelle said...

I feel the same way about Sarah's Key, Little Bee, AND East of Eden! Love your book reviews.

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