Our blog has moved!

Dear loyal LDSWBR follower:

Happy News - LDSWBR has a new home! Please come visit us, tell us what you think, and let's talk books. Happy reading!

- Shanda, Sheila, Mindy, and Hillary

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Friday, August 27, 2010

A Date with "Mockingjay"

I am thrilled that I will be reading "Mockingjay" this weekend. I received my copy two days ago and have only read 2 chapters. That does not mean I didn't like the book, it just means I have been super busy. I also have been going to bed A LOT earlier that I used to. Now that my daughter is in middle school, we have to get up earlier, because school starts at 7:30 a.m. I am getting to bed about 2-3 hours earlier than I have been before.

What I want to know, how many of you out there, are also reading "Mockingjay" by Suzanne Collins? This is the third and last book in the series. Maybe we will do a group review of this book in a few weeks. I am almost positive that we all will be reading this book.

That's all for now! Happy Reading!!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Next week...

I'll be back next week to review the "Enchanted, Inc." series by Shanna Swendson.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Thanks, Mindy!

It's a good thing we have Mindy on the LDSWBR team.

She's keeping this blog going single-handedly right now.

Sheila just finished her first week back at school. We know how crazy it is for our kids. It has to be ten times harder for the teacher.

Hillary's leaving me. Well, she's leaving the state. She's packing to move very soon, and I'm in denial. You need to understand- we've been best friends since 3rd grade. I won't say how many years that has been. A long time. I'm crying my first tears about her moving away. Suddenly I feel like I'm in 3rd grade again, watching my best friend wave at me through the back window of the station wagon as she drives away.

My hubby's on a big 12-day business trip. By far, the hardest trip to date. And the longest.

I feel guilty admitting how difficult it is, especially since my sister didn't see her husband for over six months when he was in Iraq. She had a 2-year-old, was pregnant with #2, AND managed their apartment building. When I feel like giving up, I remind myself of how comparatively easy I have it.

DD#2 is currently on her first track break, which is great since DD#1 hasn't started at the middle school yet so they are both here to help me with DS and DD#3. They are great with the physical things like getting the little ones dressed and keeping them entertained.

The psychological stuff, though, is out of their realm of expertise. Unless it's helping me on my road to the mental institution with the way they nit-pick each other. Between that and the sudden bursts of ear-piercing screams my 3-year-old son has perfected (and considers funny) I find myself closer to that padded room every day.

If anyone has any tips on how to teach children that garbage goes in the GARBAGE CAN and not on the floor, I am all ears.

My kids are incredibly sad that their summer break is almost over. I remember feeling that way when I was a kid. I find myself wondering if my mom secretly counted down to the first day of school with my same enthusiasm.

On a happier note, today I came across two uplifting and inspiring blogs. If you have a minute, visit Sandy and the 1000 Paper Cranes and Operation Nice. Both excellent blogs that helped bring a smile to my face and a tear to my eye. I really liked this post. The little things are the big things.

I still have some school shopping and preparation to do, and the house is in chaos (after all, it's four-to-one over here) but I'll be back on the blog reviewing soon. I'm anxious to get back to it.

Thanks, Mindy, for keeping the reviews going while the rest of us deal with life right now. YOU ROCK.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Help - Kathryn Stockett

I had this book from the library about a month ago, but I was reading so many other things, I couldn't get to it before it was due, so I reluctantly had to return it. I quickly got my self back on the hold list and it was slowly getting back to my turn. Until last week. I was getting my Summer Reading reward from the library, and there it was, sitting there on the shelf behind the librarian. I couldn't believe my luck, so I grabbed it.

Let me just start with this... this book was amazing. There were many times when I cried. I was so touched and humbled by this story. I knew from history class that this was a difficult time in our country, but I really had no idea.

"The Help" is told from the perspective of three woman. Skeeter is a 23 year old white woman who has just returned from college and is wondering where Constantine is. Her black maid and best friend. But, no one will tell her the truth. Many know the truth, but won't reveal it. Skeeter is friends with Hilly Holbrook and Elizabeth Leefolt. Miss Hilly is the queen bee of Jackson, and everyone looks to her as an example. But, it is not a good one. When she says jump, all the ladies in the community ask how high, and can I get you anything before I jump. Aibileen is Miss Leefolt's maid and is raising her daughter Mae Mobley. Miss Leefolt is a bad mother, but really has no role model of her own. Aibileen is working one day while Miss Hilly and Skeeter are over at Elizabeth's playing bridge. Hilly has the "brilliant" idea that Nigra's need their own toilet in the house they are working in for sanitation purposes. Skeeter doesn't agree with Hilly, and asks Aibileen when they are alone if she wishes she could change things. This gets Aibileen thinking.
Minny is Aibileen's best friend. She is sassy and talks back to her employers, and gets fired a lot. Minny goes to work for Miss Celia Foote who also has a connection to Hilly, but has secrets of her own. Skeeter, Aibileen, and Minny are all amazing women and each has a beautiful story to tell.

What is really enjoyed was the friendships that exist between the woman, and the one that develops. I loved how the author brought real life events into the story as well, and how those events affect the ladies. Medgar Evers, the six black girls who were bombed in the church, JFK, and many more. Each individual character was so well written and unique. All were so real to me, even the ones I didn't like, it was like I was watching a play. I laughed and cried, and was sad when I was done, I didn't want it to end.
Make sure you read the author's personal story about Demetrie.

5 stars

I would recommend it to anyone, and would read it again. There was some language, but it didn't change how I felt about the story. This is the author's first novel.

"The Help"

Kathryn Stockett

Amy Einhorn Books-G.P. Putnam's Sons / 2009

Hardcover - 451 pages

FTC-FYI: Borrowed from the library

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Magic Thief (#3) Found - Sarah Prineas

"The Magic Thief - Found"

Sarah Prineas


Published: June 2010

Hardcover: 357 pages

ISBN 978-0-06-137593-4

FTC FYI - borrowed from the library

Sorry, but I'm doing it again. I'm reviewing yet another series book. And, again, it's not the first of the series. But, I won't apologize for the books because they are great.
I found the first book of "The Magic Thief" series sitting in the new arrivals section of my dearly beloved library when it first came out. I was drawn by the cover, title, and the word magic. Long story short, I enjoyed the first and the second, which is called "Lost", but I think "Found" is the best of the series.
To sum up the gist of the stories... Conn is a thief who lives on the streets of Twilight. He has to pick pockets to survive, but that has also made him strong and smart. One night he picks Nevery's pocket, and it turns out, Nevery is a wizard. He takes Conn in, reluctantly at first, but he and his "housekeeper" Benet, start to love the boy. Conn meets many in the city, good and bad and has a problem with the Underlord. Who also has a problem with him. Conn finds out, he's a wizard too, and every wizard needs a locus magicalicus to do magic properly. What Conn's is and how he finds it, and what happens next, I'll let you read that. But, it's an adventure.
In "Lost" there's trouble in another city and it's up to Conn to help. He gets fixed up in the city's magic and what's happening to it (that is explained in the first as well). Conn is misunderstood by many, and many are mean to him. The "lost" part of book is what takes the story on a great turn of events.
"Found"... well, I can't say what was lost or found. But, it's no secret that the magic in Wellmet is in trouble and something terrible is coming. Conn needs to find what was lost so he can help. Along the way he finds dragons, which could hold the key to fixing the long-time problem with the cities magic and what it really is.
Great story for kids, or anyone who wants a clever, fun, quick read. I would recommend these books and I would read more from this author.

3 stars for books 1 & 2. 4 stars for book 3

Enjoy! Until next week...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Necromancer - Michael Scott

The Necromancer

Author: Michael Scott

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Published: 2010

Hardcover: 385 pages

ISBN: 978-0-385-73531-5

FYC FYI- I bought my own copy

"The Necromancer" is the fourth book in the " The Secrets of The Immortal Nicholas Flamel" series. This book was awesome, held my attention, and left me wanting more. "The Warlock" will be the next released and last in the series is "The Enchantress". I did some research to try and find a release date for "The Warlock", but I was unsuccessful. (So, if you find anything, let me know.) I'm sure it's because "The Necromancer" was just released :). That's what is so hard about loving a series, is you have to learn to wait.

I would not read this book without reading the other three. Only a week has passed since the start of the series. And, a lot has happened. You might ask yourself, "Why is she reviewing book four then?" And, I really don't have an answer, only that I would want you to read the whole series. You won't be sorry.

Here's the basics on the story: Josh and Sophie Newman are twins. Josh works for Mr. Fleming at his book store and Sophie works at a coffee shop where Mrs. Fleming is a customer. However, The Flemings have a secret. They aren't who they say they are, and the two have been searching for the twins of legend... for centuries. There is an enemy of "Fleming's", his name is John Dee, he is also searching for something. Something that will help him complete all his plans of destruction and earn him favor with the Dark Elders.

There isn't much else I can say without revealing anything spoilerish. However, every book brings interesting problems, magic, power, mystery, and mind-blowing characters. I love this series. It is very fast-paced and well written. I didn't want to read it too fast in order to savor every detail slowly, but I couldn't put it down. I love how the author executes the chapters. They are short, but you jump back and forth from one exciting situation to the next, and there's always a cliffhanger that makes you continue reading. There wasn't anything I didn't like about this book, or the series for that matter.

4 1/2 stars for "The Necromancer" and the other three in the series.

I cannot wait for the next and I would read anything from this author.

Reviewed by Mindy

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Wrong Number- Rachelle J. Christensen

Hey Kids-

Sorry I've missed a few weeks in there...To say my life is chaos right now would be an understatement. I'm sorry to report that it will probably get worse before it gets better, as my family is moving out of state. Anyhoo, I will try to keep up when it's my turn.

LDS Storymakers conference this year is where I caught my glimpse of "Wrong Number." As I scanned the inside cover, I noticed it mentioned that she had won a first chapter contest from Story Makers previously (I'm not sure which year), so with great interest I started with that award winning first chapter, and it did not disappoint.

Aubree Stewart starts her day like many of us. Well, like me. Forgetting to charge her cell phone (her being pregnant she at least has an excuse, I'm not pregnant, just naturally forgetful).So, her husband generously lets her use his. As she is driving into work, she receives a call that forever changes her life.

Because of the call, Aubree becomes the hunted. She finds herself in the witness protection program and having her first baby. Some exciting things happen (I just CAN"T tell you, you have to read it for yourself), she unexpectedly and creatively finds a way to take care of herself and her daughter, and in the process finds love.

The book spans approximately 18 months, which can be a long time in a book, but you don't feel it too much in this one. I liked that the love she finds comes from a surprising and unpredictable source, which was a pleasant addition to the book. I personally could have used a little more sizzle, but it still worked wonderfully with what was going on.

Overall for a freshman novel, it was well done, unexpected and unpredictable. I was kept constantly on the edge of my seat, and wide awake despite the late hour I found myself in. Again. Really enjoyed it, and would highly recommend it.

Until next time!


ftc fyi- library