From that time on, the world was hers for the reading....

Monday, February 21, 2011

E. Lockhart: Real Live Boyfriends

I'm such a fan of E. Lockhart's Ruby Oliver series that I was both excited and sad to read Real Live Boyfriends, the final book in series.

Ruby is a high school senior with a real live boyfriend and college applications to fill out. For her college admissions packet, she decides to film a documentary interviewing her friends about the definition of love and popularity.

Meanwhile, her family is falling part. Her grandmother passes away. Her father deals with his sadness by eating junk food and lounging around the house. Her mother, who can't handle Ruby's criticism of her strange eating habits and her husband's grieving process, takes a solo vacation.

On top of that, Noel, hasn't been acting like a boyfriend since he visited his brother in New York City. In fact, he's distant and Ruby doesn't even know if she can still call him her real live boyfriend, which causes a bit of a complication when Gideon, a boy she used to crush on, returns to her life.

And then there's the pesky panic attacks and appointments with her therapist Doctor Z.

Clearly, Ruby has a lot on her mind. But what's new there?

This book was hilarious, and sweet, and sometimes heartbreaking. E. Lockhart created a lovable, memorable character who was real, flaws and all.

I didn't want it to end. Still, it did. And it was a fitting ending to a great series.

For more information on E. Lockhart, visit:

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

January Book List

Slam by Nick Hornby -- Sam's life is going well. He's happy. Then his ex-girlfriend Alicia drops a bomb on him -- she's pregnant. Sam's not ready to be a father. He's just a teenager. And he knows how hard it was for his mom, who gave birth to him at age sixteen, to raise him. Confused and scared, Sam turns to his hero Tony Hawk for advice. Through reading his autobiography and having long conversations with his poster, Sam believes Tony Hawk has the answers to all of life's major questions. But this time he's doubtful as he keeps getting transported to the future to see what kind of father he will be and how his life could be. Nick Hornby is such a brilliant writer. Sam's emotions spilled off the pages. It was easy to care about him and hope for him to find a happy ending.

Cross Fire by James Patterson -- When an assassin starts gunning down crooked politicians, Alex Cross is forced to put his wedding plans on hold and hunt down a murderer who always seems to be one step ahead of the investigation. As if Alex wasn't busy enough, he starts getting phone calls from Kyle Craig, a relentless antagonist from his past. I think the Alex Cross series is James Patterson's best work, and it keeps getting better. This page-turner was suspenseful and intriguing.

Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks -- Katie is new to Southport, NC and determined not to make any personal connections, which isn't easy in a small town. Despite her best efforts, she finds herself forming relationships with Alex (a local store owner) and his two children and her new neighbor Jo. Despite a terrifying past that haunts her daily, she slowly lets down her guard and learns the importance of taking risks and getting her life back. Though I get a lot of grief for reading Nicholas Sparks novels, I really enjoy them. Safe Haven was no exception. It was a bit of a departure, though, as it was the first Nicholas Sparks novel that didn't make me cry. And there was a bit of a twist at the end that I didn't see coming.

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