August 29, 2011

Sarah's Key

By Tatiana De Rosnay

Amy Marie: This book keeps you from the first time you open the book. All the chapters are very short and filled with huge events that happen in the book. I won't lie and say that I didn't put this book down... because I did. I stopped reading for a little while because I knew the story was only going to get worse for a little while, that the story couldn't get better.  From back when I started reading in the 4th grade... Holocaust books have always had a place in my heart, brought tears to my eyes and never left me thinking that the story wasn't a good story. This book is about the round up of Jewish families (including children) in France in July of 1942. It is the intertwining and connecting story of a little girl and her connection to a modern day family and big secret. A wonderful love story that keeps you between the little girl, her family and the modern day journalist.

Kristin: This book was one that I had a hard time putting down. It did a great job of capturing your attention from the very beginning. I have always liked to read about stories from the Holocaust. It always dumbfounds me that we as humans could be so cruel and inhumane to our own human race. I liked that the chapters were short...I felt like I could sit down and read several chapters at one time...which is probably why I finished the book in less than 2 days! It was a really touching yet sad love story. The story had been kept a secret for generations but the pain and hurt of the secret carried on in the characters through out their lives. I tend to like books that are based on historical truths....granted the characters were fictional but the actual events that happened in German occupied Paris during the war were very true and historically accurate. I am looking forward to seeing this movie when it comes out...however...I don't think it will be as good as the book...guess time will tell! Would definitely recommend this book, especially if you were an Anne Frank book lover as a child.

Sonneri: As with almost every book written about the Holocaust, Nazi occupation or anything to do with either World War - you know going into it that the story won't be all fluff and happiness. So I knew it would be sad, which it was to some degree, but I didn't expect such a wonderfully written story of secrets. This book had so many layers - past and present, multiple families, historically accurate events and fictional characters - that you don't usually see in a book of this time period. It was so riveting that I couldn't put it down, despite the horrors and heartaches that come with World War stories. The author did a fantastic job of weaving all the elements together, and while the ending wasn't "feel-good", it suited the story perfectly by showing that redemption and forgiveness are possible by honoring your past.

August 21, 2011

One Day

By David Nicholls 

Amy Marie: This book was an amazing story. It was one of the first books where I was happy to know that Anne Hathaway was playing the character because I could put her character into the book while I was reading it. I wanted to finish the story so quick so I could go see the movie. It is a fantastic way to write a story- tracing the friendship and relationship of a couple on the same day over twenty years. I found myself laughing out loud and feeling excited to keep reading because some of the years end on cliff hangers. I do have to admit I did shut my book at one point and get really upset at what happened, but by the end of the story I found myself not high on a cloud but feeling joyful to live this day. I found this book very real... and full of life. If you are looking for a Disney love story where everything turns out how you want it... this isn't the book. For that I can appreciate this real life book. It is funny and sad and confusing and ends the way some things might end in our lives... not ideal but good. I like how Nicholls addresses the everyday feelings between people, spoken and unspoken. He does an amazing job at narrating for both Dex and Emma and their conversation with each other. I love how it was written with a british accent... it wasn't too hard to follow but made for fun reading. I would absolutely recommend this story to anyone who is looking for a great read full of lots of emotions.

Kristin: I had no idea what this book was about when I started reading it. The book had a different writing style...each chapter was written on the same day, July 15, over the span of 20 years. At times I felt like it was a little "choppy" and hard to follow. Parts of the dialogue  made me laugh out loud and I could totally see Anne Hathaway playing the part of Emma...I pictured her through out the entire book. However, I can't say that is was one of my favorite my opinion is was kinda depressing. Neither Dex nor Emma had very fulfilling lives. There was no sense of "hope" in anything for either character. It did have a twist that I was not expecting. Overall, it was a worthwhile read that kept me engaged...but I when I was finished it left me sad. I was reminded by this book that each day is a gift and we should not take our time on earth for granted. If you are looking for a "feel good" romantic book...this is not for you....however if you are looking for a book that kinda shakes things up a bit then I say give it a go! 

Sonneri: I did not like this book! While the writing style was interesting, I would not say that this is a story to read if you're looking for a happy-Hollywood-ending. Kind of like the feeling you get when you go to see a movie with high expectations, and it turns out to be not that great... making you wish you could get your money back. I literally wanted to throw this book across the room when I finished. Sorry, but it's true! Ok, so there were pretty funny parts, and you get very attached to the characters through the extremely real quality of the writing. But the ending was miserably frustrating and goes against everything I believe about there being hope in the worst of circumstances.