Friday, September 21, 2012

Reading Journal #21: Dying to Read, May B., & More

Dying to Read: A Novel (The Cate Kinkaid Files) by Lorena McCourtney

My thoughts:
I had previously read Lorena McCourtney's Ivy Malone Mysteries which I found very funny and enjoyable. When I saw she had a new novel out I had to check it out.

Cate Kindaid is in between jobs and gets hired to help her uncle, who is a P.I. On her first assignment she discoverers a dead body. Cate is suspicious that it may have been murder not an accident, which sets her on a path of discovering the truth, which may be more than she bargained for.

While I didn't enjoy this book as much as the Ivy Malone Mysteries, I found Dying to Read a light read with some funny moments. You can check out a teaser from this book here.

SCROLL Pictures, Images and Photos

Chasing the Sun (Land of the Lone Star) by Tracie Peterson

My thoughts:
Set during the time of the Civil War in Texas, Chasing the Sun tells the story of Hannah Dandridge, whose father was given a ranch for his support of the Confederate army, and William Barnett, a Yankee, whose family lost the ranch due to their support of the Union Army. Also, Hannah's father disappears and she is left with two younger siblings to raise all the while her father's partner is offering her marriage. Hannah has to decide the right thing to do and follow her heart.

I really wanted to like this book--I mean, we are talking Texas and the Civil War! The book dealt with the bitter feelings between the North and the South and the hatred against the Indians. There was a lot of conflict between Hannah and William, and when there wasn't conflict there was attraction. Hannah was portrayed as a "strong woman" who was following God's voice, but I found her very annoying. I tried, but I just couldn't like this book.

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May B. by Caroline Starr Rose

My thoughts:

I checked this book out from the library for my daughter and ended up reading it while visiting at my mother-in-law's house. Destini (12) had been trying to read it, but she was having a hard time getting into it. So, I decided to give it a go.

May B. is told in verse, which gives it a different feel. May B.'s deep desire is to be a school teacher, but she struggles to read and has been dismissed from school. May B. is being sent away from home to help another young couple until Christmas. By doing this she is helping contributing to her family. After being abandoned, May B. must survive to stay alive while being confined to a small sod house. Here is book that I really liked the description of the story (sigh, do you see a pattern here?). I like Laura Ingalls Wilder and really enjoy Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson.

This was a quick read and it is an okay story, though I probably would have enjoyed it more if it was told in prose. One of the main struggles of May B. is her inability to read, which bring up something I find quite annoying. Did kids in that day and age really struggle to read?

This summer when my parents were visiting my dad told me that my Grandma, who taught in a one room school house in the 1930's, said that they didn't have kids that couldn't learn to read. It wasn't heard of. So, I know this is fiction and the author has liberty to put whatever she wants in her book and I understand that she is addressing an issue here, but honestly, it just seemed out of place. Sometimes, today's issues don't fit into yesterday's world. Okay, I'm off my soap box.

If you enjoy hardship stories or stories written in verse, than May B. would be a great pick.

As a side note: I gave Destini permission to not read the book. I knew it was something that she wouldn't find very interesting. I'm trying to help her to learn that you don't have to finish every book you start to read. Now if only I could follow my own advice!

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