Week in Review: May 25, 2012

Time for my week in review! I have to tell you all that I’ve had a rough week in my personal life. I found out this week that my program got funding cuts and that I will no longer have a job after June 29th. I have started j0b searching already and have a phone interview set up for today. Wish me luck!

Books I finished: When She Woke by Hillary Jordan

Books I started: In the Woods by Tana French and When She Woke by Hillary Jordan

Plans for the next week: I think In the Woods is going to be one of my longer term reads. I’m enjoying going through it slowly. I’ve decided to start my first Toni Morrison book: Song of Solomon

Reviews I did this week: The Deep Zone by James M. Tabor

 

Hope you guys had great reading weeks. Have any book suggestions for me?

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Book Review: The Deep Zone by James M. Tabor

Let me preface this review by saying that I did receive this book for free from Random House through their #earlybirdread program. It’s a program that they host through twitter. If you follow @atrandom you can find out when they post the link to sign up for a chance to receive a novel they are excited about in the office. You can also check out the #earlybirdread hashtag on twitter to find out what people are saying about this month’s book. The Deep Zone by James M. Tabor was an #earlybirdread from a few months ago.

 

 

Hallie Leland is a disgraced microbiologist trying to start out her new life as a cave diving guide. She’s determined to not let her dismissal from a government science laboratory cloud her future and has decided to put that life in her past. But then she gets an urgent summons back to that world and she’s quickly thrown back into the world she has tried to leave behind and she will have to use all of her skills as a cave diver and the knowledge of the project she was working on before her dismissal to save the world from a deadly epidemic.

This book scratches so many personal “itches”. The science, the medicine, the extreme world/exploration, and the emergency preparedness. A deadly virus has broken out and may be the worst epidemic the world has seen. A medicine that Leland was working on prior to her embarrassing dismal from the government lab may hold the key to stopping the epidemic. One small problem: the key ingredient to this medicine can only be found in a very deep and dangerous cave. Now Leland will have to go back to the cave for a sample in a race against time.

One thing  that Tabor has managed to do beautifully is making each side of the story compelling and interesting. Too often when I’m reading a novel that tells how different groups in the story are moving through I get bored with at least one side of the story and feel myself racing to get back to the story of the group I am interested in. Not in this case! Each groups experiences as we are on this fast paced journey are interesting and aid in making a complete story.

I think Tabor also manages to convey the fast paced craziness that happens in an emergency situation. You feel rushed at points just like the characters do and at points it felt like everything was happening so quickly, but you knew that it was critical it happened this way if they were ever going to get ahead of the disease.

Definitely a great book to pick up for those who love action packed thrillers with some medicine and science thrown in. Loved this book and I think more people should be talking about it 🙂

Week in Review: 5/18/12

I’m trying to make an effort to blog more regularly. In addition I feel like I’m still trying to find my voice/writing style so bare with me. A lot of time I feel like I come up with this great topic to write about, then I sit down and post it and it always seems less brilliant than I imagined. Does that ever happen to you?

So week in review: 

This week I finished The Borrower by Rebecca Makkai.

I’m going to start In The Woods by Tana French. This one has been on my shelf since at least 2009 and I think I’d honestly forgotten about it until it was mentioned on The Bookrageous Podcast by Jenn (she mentions it in episode 36). Her enthusiastic endorsement made me consider picking it up again.

I’ll try to get a review of The Borrower up soon but right now I’m still trying to digest the ending.

Hope you all have had great reading week and can enjoy a weekend full of fun and reading!

Starting an Online Book Club?

Good evening!

So I’ve been rolling around this idea in my head for a while and have mentioned it once or twice on twitter but I’ve finally decided that I wanted to make a post and see if there is any interest.

I want to start an online book club. I live in a small area and don’t have many book friends so starting a real life one seems like a daunting task. Those that are already started at the libraries usually meet at inconvenient times for me. Plus I already know that so many of you are awesome and I really want to talk more about books with you. Plus, what’s better than being able to show up to book club in your pj’s and being able to drink wine without worrying about driving home (trust me I won’t judge).

So here’s the basic idea, I’d like to limit the number of people in the club to 8 people plus me, mainly because I want to use google+ hangout as the “meeting place” for our book group. We would meet and chat about a chosen book once a month in a google+ hangout but hopefully we will get a good group together that will like to chat on twitter or by e-mail in between book club meetings.  I’m hoping that we can do this during the evening time (depending on the time we could do weeknight or weekend evening).

That being said I want to try to organize a fun and friendly group. I want everyone to feel free to express opinions about the book but I don’t want people to insult other members. We can establish more solid guidelines once we see if there are people actually interested.

 

So those are the basics of my idea. Anyone interested? Leave a comment on the blog or contact me through e-mail or twitter!

Why I Wish People Would Realize Bookstore Build Communities

So, I’m probably preaching to the choir for most people that would find their way to this blog, but I feel that most people don’t understand how brick and mortar book stores build better communities. 

I started thinking about this when at my local indie a few weeks ago. I’d stopped in on my day off, browsed the shelves and picked up a few goodies. I was the only one in the shop so as I was checking out the clerk and I chatted. We talked about the book she was reading, world book night, and the lack of book stores in the area. Then she asked what I did for a living. I told her about the program I work for (it can be found in my previous post from back when I started) and she started talking to me about her health and where she could get services. 

I can think of few other places where I would feel comfortable talking to someone on such a varied range of topics and I started to think, where in this digital age do people really gather to converse about the community, health topics and the like? I guess some still fall back on churches and other groups, but I think society overlooks the wonderful gathering place that is the bookstore. A place where people with differing views, interests and hobbies can gather together to discuss topics, the community and possibly give each other some helpful information. 

So really what am I saying here? Probably nothing earth shattering, just that I wish people realized what a valuable asset a local bookstore can be to a community. Definitely a value worth preserving. 

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