What I have been reading...

Trema's bookshelf: read

Messenger
Gathering Blue
Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy Childhood
The Giver
Graveminder
Child of Grace
Survivor
Homefront
The Silent Girl: A Novel
Schooled
The One Who Waits for Me
Flesh and Blood So Cheap: The Triangle Fire and Its Legacy
Room
The Blind in Darkness
Haunted Kids: True Ghost Stories (Haunted Kids)
Like the Willow Tree: The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce, Portland, Maine, 1918


Trema's favorite books »
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Monday, July 9, 2012

Review: Don't Forget To Write

Don't Forget to Write
By Pam Hobbs

Quote: " More likely we'll be sold for half price tomorrow. ~ Iris pg. 70

Started: June 29, 2012
Finished: July 8, 2012

paperback/ 347 pages

From the Cover:
In June 1940, ten-year-old Pam Hobbs took the long journey from her council home in Leigh-on-Sea to faraway rural Derbyshire.
 In some foster homes Pam found a second family, with babies to look after, car rides and picnics. But other billets took a more sinister turn, as the adults found it easy to exploit the children in their care.
 Returning home, the war was far from over. Making do with rations, dodging bombs and helping with the war effort, Pam and her family struggled to get by.
  In Don't Forget To Write, Pam describes a time that was full of overwhelming hardship and devastation; yet also of kindness and humour, resilience and courage.

My Review:
 I loved this book for many reasons. First off I enjoyed reading a book based on World War II from a non-Jewish view point. I have always been fascinated with the subject but have rarely if ever seen it wrote from this side of the fence. It was wonderfully written by an child evacuee that shares her experiences and daily life throughout such a traumatic and uncertain time for anyone, let alone a ten-year-old child.
 This story made me feel as if a grandmother or old friend was right there with me, telling their story. It brought this story to life! 
 Some may get mixed up with all the characters(7 children, 2 parents, aunts, uncles, foster families), but it is well worth it to read it through. Coming from a large family of story tellers, this book was wonderful for me!
*4 stars!*

Review: Blame

Blame
by Michelle Huneven

Quote: " You'd think they could come up with something, said Patsy. So we could come out more educated, or at least less crazy, than we were going in." ~ Patsy pg. 73

Started: June 22, 2012
Finished: June 27, 2012

291 pages/ hardcover

From the cover:
The story: Patsy MacLemoore, a history professor in her late twenties with a brand-new Ph.D. from Berkeley and a wild streak, wakes up in jail-yet again-after another epic alcoholic blackout. "Okay, what'd I do?" she asks her lawyer and jailers. "I really don't remember." She adds, jokingly: "Did I kill someone?"
  In fact, two Jehovah's Witnesses, a mother and daughter, are dead, run over in Patsy's driveway. Patsy, who was driving with a revoked license, will spend the rest of her life-in prison, getting sober, finding a new community(and husband) in AA-trying to atone for this unpardonable act.
  Then, decades later, another unimaginable piece of information turns up.
  For the reader, it is an electrifying moment, a  joyous, fall-off-the-couch-with-surprise moment. For Patsy, it is more complicated. Blame must be reapportioned, her life reassessed. What does it mean that her life has been based on wrong assumptions? What can she cleave to? What must be relinquished? 

My Review: My thoughts on this book lead me to have more questions than answers. I won't say that is  going on any of my favorites lists, it is a good read that makes you think. It makes you question just who is to blame? How many times in life have we been at least somewhat responsible for something but passed the buck so to speak because someone else played a bigger part? I guess what I'm trying to say is, we may not be solely or completely to blame, but even our unintended involvement may leave part of the blame on ourselves. Whether we acknowledge it or not. 
Patsy had evidence, patterns in her behavior and a guilty conscience that helped form what she used to determine who, what she was and had become. She had family, friends, cellmates and professionals telling her how to deal, how to move on, how to live. She had both support and judgement. Sometimes from the same person. 
 Sometimes during the book I felt she was naive in her thinking and other times I thought she was being more realistic than others around her in dealing with what she knew and what she had done. There are parts of the book that are sad to me. I felt she did get screwed out of things she may otherwise have felt worthy of. I won't go into details due to spoiling the book, but she could have had a very different life after the events surrounding the plot. 
*4 Stars for Blame*

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