Thursday, September 25, 2008

Recent books

I've had good luck with the last few books I've read and I wanted to share a few of them here.

This book has become really popular and won several awards so I imagine lots of people have read it. Even so, I just got around to it. It was a great book though! A young girl growing up in 1940's Germany discovers - amid the Nazis and the book-burnings - the power of reading and literature. A little depressing at times, it's still a powerful book full of hope, love and the power of friendship.

Definitely a lighter read after The Book Thief, this is more of a children's novel... but I enjoyed it just the same. When it's announced that the future bride of the prince will come from a small mountain town, all eligible girls are all enrolled in a "princess academy" for a year. At the end of the year the prince will choose his bride. The story follows Miri, a small girl who struggles between the desire to prove herself and the love she holds for her village and its people. The book is simple and sweet enough that young girls would like reading it (or having it read aloud) but the plot is detailed enough for an adult reader to enjoy. I think my daughter is too young to like this yet, but 7-8 years old would be a good time to read it with her.

I read this book after I watched the movie and I have to say, I don't know which I liked more. Recently-orphaned Flora Poste goes to live with the Starkadder family on their creepy farm - Cold Comfort. She makes it her mission to take every individual member of the family - from the hellfire-preaching Amos to the flighty-spritey Elphine - out of their gloomy circumstances and into a normal life. Her main obstacle is the home's matriarch, the mysterious Aunt Ada who is determined that no member of her family will ever leave the farm. The book is sarcastic, funny and sweet at the same time (plus the movie leaves you with a desire to say "I saw something narsty in the woodshed" at least 10 times a day.) Definitely my favorite of these three books, I think I'll be going out to rent the movie again soon.


Hannah said...

adding them to my list of "to reads!"

Jill said...

I loved Princess Academy! Have you read her other books? I haven't been disappointed with one yet, they are lovely no brainer reads :)

Jenny said...

Ok, we need to get together for a christmas craft day and make vinyl lettering of 'there be no butter in hell' and embroider pillows with 'the wages of sin is death'.

I liked the goose girl better than princess academy, you should check it out.

Valerie S said...

I have the first two sitting on my bedstand right this minute. I'm about 1/3 of the way through the Book Thief. I'm going to read Princess Academy because I liked the Goose Girl so much. I'll have to put the other one on my "to read" list. Thanks for the suggestions.