Sunday, March 23, 2014

On our bookshelf: March 2014

Not every one loves books as much as me, I know this because my book review posts are never big hits. But the thing is, I really like talking about books and there are always one or two that stand out every few weeks that I want to talk more about. This month it's these three, so for the 7 people each month who might read my book posts...this is for you.

This month:

Me:  The Paris Wife.

The Paris Wife is all about the first wife of Ernst Hemingway. It's written in her voice, but not by her. Initially I didn't like it, I had to work hard for the first 50 pages, but once I was reading it I found it pretty good. There were times that I wanted to stop reading this and go grab some Ernst Hemingway books instead and then others when I didn't want anything to do with this weird and selfish man.

It annoyed me that the couple are considered poor in financial wealth. They rent out dingy low level homes but also spend many months travelling around Europe whenever they feel like it, they have a nanny for their child and the Paris Wife never actually gets a job, her trust funds, while basic apparently, cover all these things. But this was simply a fact of how they lived, rather than a dislike of the book. Hadley (the wife) can be hard to like, I needed to really put myself in her time era to accept the decisions she makes in her life. It's a love story, but there are times when that love is hard to find.

If you like Paris, if you like history, if you like historical romance, than this book is worth it.

Junior Primary School Kids

Weirdo by Anh Do

I had this book in my present cupboard, hiding out til I needed it. One night Popps needed something to read, and it had to be read aloud for her homework. I surprised her with this book and she started reading it to Mr H. They were soon laughing so much that I didn't think they would finish the book. It's full of drawings, funny moments, toilet humour and laugh out loud moments.

The text is simple enough and engaging enough for early reluctant readers. Perfect for both boys and girls who like to be entertained while they read. Older more capable readers will finish this quickly but will enjoy it too, while older kids who are struggling a bit with reading skills will be able to complete this one and enjoy being able to read to themselves.

Picture Book of the Month. 

Keep Out by Noela Young

Popps came home with this book in her reader bag. As soon as I saw it I remembered loving it. I never had this book as a child but I must have borrowed it often from the library as I clearly remember reading it many many times.

Keep Out! is the story of a group of city kids that have no where to play. They try and play in the streets but the grown ups keep moving them on. They find an abanonded block and take over it, they play in the falling down kitchen and use rubble to build whatever they want.

Local Council come along soon enough and plan to 'clean up' the area, but the kids get their way and the council make it the best park ever. As a kid I remember thinking I would love to find this park.

I went on to Amazon to see if I could get us a copy after not being able to grab one locally. Guess how much it was. You'll never guess - $845. I decided that it was best left in the online shop at that rate. I've been keeping an eye on ebay, but let me know if you have a copy to sell.


  1. I for one love your reviews and my offer of position of senior book selector for the IBBV is still stands!

    1. Excellent - send me my job description.

    2. BTW Keep an eye out for Weirdo - Even Weirder! Hitting shelves in June!

  2. I too love reading and any opportunity to read a book review so thank you. Plus my 9 year old received Weirdo for Christmas and he just loves it.

    1. Fantastic to hear. Phew!

      Weirdo was a surprise find for us, I had no idea it would be such a hit.

  3. I have been building up my book collection over the last few years. Mainly on Parisian fashion and lifestyle as this is what I love. My youngest daughter (in year 10) has just recently discovered a huge passion for reading and reads everyday. This has helped with her writing immensely and her teachers are stating the fact, which in turn makes her happy.

    1. There are no limitations on how wonderful reading is Vicki - so much to choose from, so many stories to be lost and found in. How lovely for her reading to be making such an impact.

  4. Oh I love book talk! The best reads are found through recommendations, so thankyou :-)

  5. I love reading and books. At the moment I am reading Nora Robert's Witness and we just finished reading Charlotte's Web to Olivia.

  6. I'll definitely keep an eye out for Weirdo :) I loved Ahn's autobiography: made me laugh so hard and managed to convey some beautiful life values and perspectives, but without ever getting preachy.


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