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Josephanie A. (puppyfred) - Reviews

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A 2nd Treasury Of Knitting Patterns
A 2nd Treasury Of Knitting Patterns
Author: Barbara G. Walker
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.7/5 Stars.
 5
Review Date: 12/16/2023


A classic, timeless must have for every knitter of every level!


Body for Life: 12 Weeks to Mental and Physical Strength
Body for Life: 12 Weeks to Mental and Physical Strength
Author: Bill Phillips
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 128
Review Date: 6/6/2007
Helpful Score: 1


I hated this book. The information was good, but the writer speaks in a narrative with unnecessary verbage. There is the constant tic of "you see" throughout the writing, and being one who constantly edits people's writing, I found it truly irritating. If it were reedited, I would gladly reread this book.


A Child Called 'It': One Child's Courage to Survive
A Child Called 'It': One Child's Courage to Survive
Author: Dave Pelzer
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1967
Review Date: 6/21/2007
Helpful Score: 22


This book is a sad tale that is very typical of children in foster care today. Most will read this story and be shocked at the malicious treatment Dave received as a child. However, I, as a child abuse attorney based in Los Angeles, CA, who has represented perhaps thousands of children found myself thinking, "I've seen worse." as I read of Dave's horiffic plight.

Unfortunately, such abuse as Dave's is none too common in today's world. Quite often, I've been asked by the unsympathetic fool, "What is the worst case of child abuse you've seen?" My common response is, "Do you mean where the child lived, or where the child died?"

Most of this abuse goes on right under our noses, unnoticed, and that, is the true tragedy of this story. Kudos to Dave for his ability to survive and his strength to share his story.


Cold Mountain
Cold Mountain
Author: Charles Frazier
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 733
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 5


Some people may just adore this book. For some reason, I have never been able to get into it. I've attempted to read this book several times, and just lose interest. Perhaps this book will do better in the hands of another reader.


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Author: Mark Haddon
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 4456
Review Date: 6/7/2007
Helpful Score: 8


This book was just "weird" and not enjoyable to me. I dislike math greatly, and have no appreciation for the subject. Not to be a spoiler for a reviewer, this is the adventure of a child who is a type of savant. Others may find it brilliant, but it was not my cup of tea.


The Dogs of Babel
The Dogs of Babel
Author: Carolyn Parkhurst
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.2/5 Stars.
 34
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 3


A most interesting book, written with an amazing twist of intelligence. As one reads it, the the common thought is that it is a sweet story of loss of love and coping with it. However, upon finishing the book, I found myself greatly disturbed, wondering who exactly is the mentally ill, and who is the sane? Upon reading it, you may be able to answer this question for yourself.


The Good Earth
The Good Earth
Author: Pearl S. Buck
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 512
Review Date: 5/28/2007
Helpful Score: 9


I hadn't read this book since 8th grade. Now, 25 years later, I read it again and weep with the beauty of this book. Love, tolerance, deception, greed, pride all flowing as poetry. If you haven't read this book since high school, you, now as an adult must re-read to truly appreciate what makes this book the classic it is.


The Kite Runner
The Kite Runner
Author: Khaled Hosseini
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 5750
Review Date: 6/18/2007
Helpful Score: 6


What an amazing book. A story of love, self hatred and redemption. This story comes from the heart and is reads like poetry. Destined to become a true classic, I found this book one of the finest pieces of literature I have read in many years. Its themes transcend all races religions and creeds. This should be a must read for every college student, and should be on every member's wish list. Hosseini's writing abilities stand leagues above his peers in the literary world today. Absolutely breathtaking.


The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven
The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven
Author: Sherman Alexie
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 76
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 3


Alexie published this book at the young age of 26. He offers insight into being an Indian, and even pokes fun at himself and his culture; something we Indians do to make light of our often weary situation. Most poigniantly, the story Ghosts of Salmon is the heart of this book. Read this story and consider it above and beyond all "green" literature and Al Gore stories we hear today. Alexie, prior to the trend, had a strong understanding of what was going on prior to the term "global warming." Seeing the movie Smoke Signals does not do this book justice.


A Million Little Pieces
A Million Little Pieces
Author: James Frey
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 2160
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 37


So Oprah had a hissy fit over this book. So people were put off because of some alleged fictionalization of this story. Regardless, it is excellent reading, and the author either has done a tremendous amount of research into addiction and recovery, or experienced addiction and recovery to tell this chilling story. In all reality, when one tells their side of a story, who isn't tempted to expound upon the truth a bit? Embellishment makes for good story telling. The only difficulty I had with the story is that an addict as severe as Frey could gain and maintain sobriety in as short a time as six weeks.


One L : The Turbulent True Story of a First Year at Harvard Law School
One L : The Turbulent True Story of a First Year at Harvard Law School
Author: Scott Turow
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.2/5 Stars.
 37
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 5


OK Gang, I read this book as a bright eyed soon to be law student prior to my first year of law school. Firstly, I have little credence in one who "claims" to have "aced" the LSAT. Secondly, although Turow seems to write about a hellish first year, I wish to point out, "How bad can it be, if he had time to have a wife, go to law school full time, AND write a book?" It simply is not a realistic view of what life as a first year law student at a top law school is like. My own experiences included classmates committing suicide for not being ranked #1 in their class for the first time in their lives. It also included classmates who quit the very first time they got humiliated by a law professor during a lecture. My own experience my first year was of the fear of falling behind, and playing catch-up for a semester. I was in the library by 8 AM, class at 9AM, and went home about 11PM, for the full 3 years, often with hundreds of pages to read an analyze nightly. How someone managed to write a book amidst all that madness is clearly beyond me. The only rationale I could come up with is that Harvard does not give grades in its classes; there is no student competition - your grade is either "Pass" or "Not Pass". I'd suggest doing some research on what it is to have to compete with fellow students for grades, and look at law schools where your notebook computer is stolen for the mere sin of getting up to go to the bathroom.


Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books
Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books
Author: Azar Nafisi
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.2/5 Stars.
 1399
Review Date: 6/18/2007
Helpful Score: 29


This is not a badly written book. I kept losing interest in it - Anyone over the age of 30 is aware of the oppression that women in Iran suffered upon the Revolution. The problem I had with it is that in order to fully comprehend this story, the literature discussed in this memoir should be fresh in the reader's head. Unfortunately, I haven't read stories such as The Great Gatsby or Lolita in years, and didn't want to reread these stories solely for the sake of Nafisi's book.


The Recipe to Healthy Weight
The Recipe to Healthy Weight
Author: Sav-on Albertson's Osco
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 2


This book is worth a swap - the recipies in it are really good, and shhh. . . don't tell anyone - healthy. I'm merely purging my bookshelves of too many cookbooks, so have decided I can part with this one.


Spoon River Anthology (Dover Thrift Editions)
Spoon River Anthology (Dover Thrift Editions)
Author: Edgar Lee Masters
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
 4
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 2


A collections of stories of people who lie beneath the headstones in Spoon River. I used this book in college for an advanced acting class. Each has a story to tell, and makes one think about who are the people in the marked graves. In this anthology, we learned about delivery and interpretation of each person's story, and performed each anthology several times over, interpreting it in a different fashion each and every time. For those who enjoy exploring old graveyards and reading old headstones, this book is for you.


A Thousand Splendid Suns
A Thousand Splendid Suns
Author: Khaled Hosseini
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4.3/5 Stars.
 1589
Review Date: 7/4/2007
Helpful Score: 8


My heart is still pounding, I'm hyperventilating and I'm wiping away tears.

The book doesn't have the kick in the first half or so that The Kite Runner has, but towards the middle, it picks up with the fire and passion. It leads the reader down a path that twists and turns in a gentle manner, and tweaks expectations into hairpins. The evil spouse, Rasheed, despite his shortcomings is not played out to be entirely despicable even though he is a brutal person. It is difficult to articulate, but Rasheed beats and brutalizes his wives, but at the same time, although a hateful and hated person, is somehow tolerated by the reader.

I enjoyed reading this novel. I encourage you to read it, but don't beg you to read it as I did The Kite Runner. I don't feel it is better or worse than The Kite Runner, it is merely different. Perhaps my difficulty with A Thousand Splendid Suns, is that unlike other authors such as Wally Lamb, who wrote "She's Come Undone" or Michael Dorris who wrote my favorite, "A Yellow Raft In Blue Water", Hosseini doesn't manage in the early pages to truly capture the female psyche in his writing. He does manage to capture it toward the middle of the book, at which point the pages start turning themselves. The Kite Runner was written entirely through the eyes of a man by a man, so therein lies the difference. The larger issue for me is now that I've finished both of Hosseini's works, my expectations in the quality of what I read has risen.


The Time Traveler's Wife
The Time Traveler's Wife
Author: Audrey Niffenegger
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 5298
Review Date: 6/5/2007
Helpful Score: 24


This is a book I can read over and over again. I've waited for the movie to come out, but it seems that it never made the screen. The story is fascinating, funny and heart wrenching. It grabs the readers interest, and seems to glue itself to the reader's soul. This is truly one of those "I can't put it down" books. If you are lucky enough to nab a copy of this classic, do it!


Two Little Girls in Blue
Two Little Girls in Blue
Author: Mary Higgins Clark
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 688
Review Date: 6/18/2007
Helpful Score: 5


This book was just OK to me. I read it in about 3 evenings, and suspected the author cracked out this book in about a week. Not particularly moving, this book was a somewhat decent way to pass time instead of reading old copies of People magazine or other such nonsense.


A Yellow Raft in Blue Water
A Yellow Raft in Blue Water
Author: Michael Dorris
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 133
Review Date: 6/18/2007
Helpful Score: 6


An amazing triad of stories written in the views of Grandmother, Mother and Daughter. One of my favorite stories, it is the tale of Rayona and her life on and off the reservation. Most of the jokes are inside jokes that Native American would understand, but would go undetected by one not familiar with the culture. Heartfelt and tender, this is a book to read and keep to be read over and over.


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