Books From My Closet

"I Love Books The Way Some Girls Love Shoes"

Archive for the category “Love Stories”

The Circus Is Over

Hello Dear Followers,

I finished “The Night Circus” by Erin Morgenstern a few days ago. Sadly, “American Wife” by Curtis Settinfield is still not finished.

What I wanted to share about “The Night Circus” is when you finish it, start over and re-read because I found the author wasn’t clear about a lot of parts in the book leaving me confused and having to go back.  Or trying to remember why certain parts were being said again, if they were said before.

The author would do short chapters to give clues and  leave you guessing more, but you never found out what the significance was, and by the time you did, if you did, you didn’t remember it anyway.

I can see why The New York Times didn’t rate this book a best seller, you are often confused by what is happening most of the time, at least I was.  I was trying to figure out what the connections were of the people involved and why certain events happened.  I was very confused most of the time.

The good points of the book  was that it kept you wanting to read more, it had excellent life lessons throughout and like the circus itself, it reminded me of a dream.

The love story in the book was intense towards the end and lovely, but the author didn’t clarify I don’t think at least, what happened to the couple or how they got to be where they were.

I have always wanted to go to a circus and I love hearing about the circus during the turn of the 20th century, and the 1920-30s.  There is something magical about that a time period in history, I can’t quite put my finger on what it is.

I think that is why I loved “Water for Elephants” by Sara Gruen so much, I love the time period it was in.

So basically, re-read again if you have read it already to get a good handle on the story she is trying to tell and you may find you will enjoy it even more.

Until next time…

A Book of Substance

Hello Dear Followers,

As you know I am reading “American Wife” by Curtis Sittenfeld and its an excellent book. It is a real work of fiction, it’s not crappy, its real. It has substance and definitely worth the read.

This book is also fictionally and loosely based on former First Lady Laura Bush, now I am not sure which parts are or aren’t real, but all I picture as I am reading is her and former President George W. Bush.  I see him as he is in this book, it’s so weird to visualize him young like this and reading the experiences they have had together.

I think the author has painted an excellent fictional account of Alice Lindgren and the twists and turns that bring her to the inevitable title of First Lady.

I won’t be done with this book by October, but I can most definitely recommend this book. It’s not everyday you find a book of substance and I think I’ve found a new author I’d love to explore in the future.

Until next time…

The Best of Me

Hello Dear Followers,

Photo courtesy of Target.com.

My next book will be “The Best of Me” by the fabulous Nicholas Sparks.  It’s a love story, of course.  It tells the story of two small-town former high school sweethearts from opposite sides of the tracks (they are always on the opposite sides of the tracks) Now middle-aged, they’ve taken wildly divergent paths, but neither has lives the live they have imagined and neither can forget the passionate first love that forever altered their world.

When they are both called back to their hometown for a funeral of the mentor who gave them shelter, they will be forced to confront the choices each has made, and ask whether love can truly rewrite the past.

I will be reading this book until July 15 and then I will start my next book since I am so far behind. So I hope you will join me in reading “The Best of Me” by Mr. Sparks and enjoy!

Until next time..

What I’m Reading This Summer

Hello Dear Followers,

I usually don’t announce books in advance like this and I am not done with “The Help” just yet, but I have to admit seeing the constant mention of “summer reading lists” in bookstores and on various social media sites, made me nostalgic for the days before Borders and Barnes & Noble were my escapes, when I’d be one of the first kids signing up at the library for the summer reading program.  I couldn’t wait!

So here are three books I will be reading this summer -

Book image courtesy of http://www.bestsellers.about.com

1. “The Last Lecture” by Randy Pausch. A lot of professors give talks titled “The Last Lecture” Professors are asked to consider their demise and to ruminate on what matters most to them.  And while they speak, audiences can’t help but mull the same question: What wisdom would we impart to the world if we knew it was our last chance? If we had to vanish tomorrow, what would we want to as our legacy. Mr. Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon was asked to give such a lecture, he didn’t have to imagine it was his last, since he was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Why I picked this:  Because it has been my experience that books like these, however  as short as they are (this one is 206 pages), they are filled with excellent advice about life and this reminds me of my favorite book “The Five People You Meet In Heaven” by Mitch Albom. Mr. Albom’s book left such a deep impact on my life, it saved me from myself during some of the darkest moments of my life.  I imagine this book will do the same.

Book image courtesy of http://www.bookmomma.wordpress.com

2. “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.  It is January 1946, London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject.  Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’d never met, a native of Guernsey, the British Island once occupied by the Nazis. He’d come across her name on the flyleaf of a secondhand volume by Charles Lamb.  Perhaps she could tell him where he might more books by this author. As Juliet and her new coorespondent exchange letters, she is drawn into the world of this man and his friends, all members of Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, a unique book club formed in a unique, spur-of-the-moment way: as an alibi to protect its members from arrest by the Germans.

Why I picked this:  Letters, books and history. All of which I just love. I feel the art of letter writing is lost in the maze of social media and e-mail. There isn’t romance in correspondence anymore, letter writing was personal, romantic, and passionate.  I love books, if I could spend my time in a cafe  drinking fabulous coffee and reading all day escaping the world around me, I’d be happy.  History especially the time in which this book takes place has always fascinated me, I love learning about World War II and shortly after the war.

Book image courtesy of http://www.nicholassparks.com

3. “The Best of Me” by Nicholas Sparks.  In the spring of 1984, high school students Amanda Collier and Dawson Cole fell deeply irrevocably in love. Though they were from opposite sides of the tracks, their love for each other seems to defy the realities of life in the small town of Oriental, North Carolina. A loner from a violent and infamous local family, Dawson believed his love for Amanda promised an escape from the darker destiny laid out for him. A golden girl from a well-to-do family with plans to attend Duke University, Amanda saw something in Dawson that spoke to her own rebellious and passionate heart. But as summer of their senior year came to a close, unforeseen events would tear the young couple apart, setting them on radically divergent paths.

Why I picked this –  I just love Nicholas Sparks, he is a wonderful writer. He grabs you from the first page and never lets you go and when it is over.  Then you are left craving more. That is a good writer.

(Since I fell behind with “The Help” I will be making up my June book with one of these three books and “The Help” will be considered my May book.  )

Make sure you share with me what you are reading this summer on here or on Facebook and/or Twitter.

Okay! Until next time… Happy Summer Reading!

Lovely Bennet Sisters

Hello Dear Followers,

Where do I begin with “Pride And Prejudice?” I do not know. I have to say overall, I enjoyed the book, I thought it was good. I found myself bored at times however, of their constant talking and constant declarations of emotions. I kept wanting to say “get to the point already!”

I gained a respect for Mr. Darcy, I found him to be a good man and seriously mis-understood.  I think we can all learn a lesson from Elizabeth Bennet’s presumptions of him.  Don’t we all judge a book by its cover never really allowing ourselves to fully know a person until we have fully spent some time with them and really hear what they have to say?

I was glad Elizabeth learned her lesson and beyond that was able to love him how she should.   People like Mr. Darcy don’t come around very often and if they do, they may not be given the credit they fully deserve.

I feel this was story not just about Elizabeth, but also about her sister.  It was about their lives, their choices about whom they choose to love.  I firmly believe this story is based a lot on Jane Austen’s life and her own sister Cassandra’s in many ways. While both Austen sisters never married, I feel this was about a part of their lives that many may not too much about unless you have of course see “Becoming Jane” (wonderful movie, if I can keep my eyes open, I may watch it now)

I do have to say I could not stand their mother, she was too much. Pardon me, but so many times I wanted to tell her to just shut up and their sister Lydia was a replica of their mother in so many ways. So very much the same in many ways. I truly loved their father, I felt he was real, I felt he looked at life realistically and truly wanted what was best for his daughters money or no money.

I couldn’t imagine living this life where your whole life as a woman was dependent upon whether you could find a suitable partner in your life or be labeled a “spinster.”  Women weren’t given the choices they are given today. While I would have loved to live in a different time, I don’t think I could stay long feeling so suffocated.

I would recommend this book to anyone willing to spend the extensive time following a classic love story that isn’t seen today in a society that no longer exists.

Until next time….

 

It’s Human Nature

“Stupid Men are the only ones worth knowing, after all”- Pride & Prejudice

Hello Dear Followers,

I’m a little later than I thought I would be to sit down and write this post, but better late than never. I have been toying with what I was going to talk about for this post a lot this last week, because a lot of thoughts have run through my mind about people, relationships, marriage, past and present.

During Elizabeth Bennet’s time, the ultimate goal so it seems, was to find a suitable partner with whom you would marry. The courtship was quite drawn out and family was very much involved (her mother annoys me tremendously in this book).

Today, the goal has changed a bit, marriage is a much harder goal to reach. It is complicated, it is difficult to find a suitable partner who wants and shares the same goals as you do and is successful and and attractive.

Unlike women in Miss Bennet’s time, we have more freedom, we don’t have to get married, we are liberated, but with our liberation come more ties that bind. Our mothers have taught us to go after what we want, to know what we deserve and never ever settle. This generation of 20 something year olds looking for marriage are at a disadvantage because we want too much, we need too much and we are picky.

Miss Bennet’s time was a lot simpler. And I believe the character of Miss Bennet showed the independence we see in women today, she was not upset by refusing her first marriage proposal, she knew she deserved better, and she did.

“The more I see the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and every day confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of either merit or sense.”

I can’t agree more with this quote above. Miss Bennet’s sister Jane thinks she is on her way to the alter only to be miserably disappointed by the man she fell for. Does this sound any different than what we deal with today? I don’t think so.

My question to all of my dear readers, is what makes finding someone who will be good to you, love you and share a lot of the same similarities so hard? This discussion can be taken down so many avenues. No one knows. I’d love to hear what you think.

Do we lack respect for ourselves so men don’t have to try so hard? But in Miss Bennet sister’s case in the story, she was still left behind and this was 200 years ago?! What do you make of that?

I also realized that people talking about relationships, especially women hasn’t changed, we still do it. We still analyze, gossip and wonder about the opposite sex regularly. I found it hilarious the way these women spoke, because they aren’t too far behind us in their thoughts about relationships. We still compete with other women, we still cry and get angry over the person we feel the most connected with. It’s human nature.

I have to add that I found the father incredibly funny, he provided such light hearted speech through out this whole book. He was the comic relief, he was the reminder that these problems are not problems at all, just hurdles in everyday life that we need to try and conquer. I also have to say that we as women, we talk too much, I realized this fact in reading this book so far. There is so much more to life.

Until next time…

Romance and History

Hello Dear Followers,

For someone who has enjoyed history her entire life, this book certainly was an excellent read. I thought Ms. Lauren did a great job of capturing a time period and  a romance between two people kept me wanting to read more. I do recommend that readers grab a copy of this book and begin reading immediately. I want to personally thank the author for introducing me to this book and allowing me to discover a great read.

I found that I could really relate to the character of Amanda and her travels of historic homes and I feel that the author spoke to not only the history of the time but also captured today’s day and age well. I think she spoke to the past and present very well. I definitely look forward to reading more.  I would welcome the author to speak further as a guest blogger on her book.

Just the other day I myself said I wish I could time travel to a different period, I would choose the 19th century and the early 20th century. What time period would you choose my dear followers? I’d love to hear your feedback.

Until next time..

In True Nicholas Sparks Fashion

Nicholas Sparks

Hello Dear Followers,

Well, what can I say about completing a Nicholas Sparks book? He is wonderful. Mr. Sparks stayed true as always to his love story formula. He leaves you craving more, he leaves you thinking and his reads are always quick because he envelopes you into his stories.

This book had a valuable lesson through most of it. It showed that you can’t allow your past dictate who you become in life and what you allow to enter into your life. You can’t let the bad experiences in life define who you become in life.

So many of us have done that, I know I have. For as long as I can remember I have always allowed the bad to dictate my direction in life and it has dictated who I have allowed in my life and who I have not. The title of this book, “The Rescue” is true to form, it spoke to the rescue of the main character, a rescue from his past and a rescue from himself.

I would highly recommend this book, I thought like many of Mr. Sparks’ books that it was wonderful.  I hope you enjoyed reading this book along with me, if not, I highly suggest you pick this one up or any of his books up, they are really worth a try. I promise! :-) Until later!

“The Rescue” by Nicholas Sparks

"The Rescue" by Nicholas Sparks

Hello Dear Followers,

For my August book selection, I will be reading “The Rescue” by Nicholas Sparks.  Mr. Sparks  is by far my absolute favorite author of all time. There are no words to describe him as a writer. I think he is an excellent author and when you’re finished reading one of his books, you are always  left craving more.

“The Rescue” is the story about a volunteer fireman Taylor McAden who is driven to take terrifying, heroic risks to save lives. But there is one leap into the unknown he can’t bring himself to make; he can’t fall in love. A man who likes to rescue troubled women, he inevitably leaves them as soon as they want more from him.  Then one day, a record-breaking storm hits his small Southern town, and Taylor comes across a young single mother named Denise Holton in a crashed car. When she revives, Taylor finds himself looking for her missing son – and involved in a rescue different from all the others.

This one will require him to open doors to his past slammed shut by pain.  And, with Denise’s help, dare him to make the greatest commitment of all: Love someone forever.

This book I know will be a fast read, I can already tell. Until next time!

Recommended Unfinished –

Hello Dear Followers,

Before I started Books From My Closet I was  in the midst of two books that still have bookmarks in them, waiting to be completed.  While both of these books are awesome in their own way, I never had a chance to finish them, there is still hope that I will though!  So here are two recommendations of the unfinished -

"The Happiness Project" By Gretchen Rubin

1.  “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin.  – Really excellent read so far.  This book also helped in the creation of this blog, she recommended starting a blog to bring more happiness in your life. The book is the author’s memoir on how she test-drove on ways to be happier.  It is a New York Times Bestseller and definitely worth the read.  if you are interested in this book, check out the author’s Web site, www.happiness-project.com. We all need a little happiness in our lives? So why not check it out! This book may pop up later for “Books From My Closet” but until then.

2. “My Name is Memory” by Ann Brashares is a  romance that stretches across centuries and past lives constitutes the core of Brashares’s varied second adult novel, the first in a planned trilogy. The story is primarily that of Daniel, as, in the present, he pursues Lucy (whom he knows as Sophia in a previous life) and attempts to persuade her of their history and destiny, but his passion initially and understandably scares her off. He disappears, presumed dead, but Lucy, unable to forget him, investigates his claims of their history until she discovers the truth, according to Publisher’s Weekly on Amazon.com.

While I won’t get too much into this, this story is really an excellent book and worth the read, if you believe in love and the power it can have on two people, you should read this.

My Name Is Memory By Ann Brashares

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