Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Boxing Day

I hope everyone's holidays are going/went well. I hope that Hanukkah Harry, Solstice Sam, Santa, and Kwanzaa Kofi were good to you and yours and that now you're all full of cookies and goodness and curled up with the parts of your family that don't drive you crazy and a good book.

I had to leave Wisconsin much too soon, but it was a lovely time even if the Packers totally sucked in Sunday's game. (ouch. seriously. ouch.) It even snowed...

Also, I got a lot of reading done. I now have 21 books to read before Monday turns to Tuesday. I can totally pull that off, right? Yeah, I know. But, it will be fun to see how far I get.

Anyway, here are a few of the books I read in various airport lounges, airplanes, and my parents' living room.

If a Tree Falls at Lunch Period by Gennifer Choldenko

Someone remind me to stay away from really well done non-humorous realistic fiction about junior high. They make all the memories I've worked so hard to repress come up.

Anyway, Kirstin's best friend is hanging around the mean girls they used to hate. Kirsten could maybe be included if she just tried a little harder to fit in. That's what her mom wants--to the point where she'll call up the other mothers. Kirsten's not dumb. She knows that Ms. Queen Bee doesn't want her there. She also knows she doesn't want to be there, so she starts hanging out with some other people.

Boys. Scholarship students.

Walk is one of those scholarship students-- one of a very few non-white students at this exclusive private school. He wishes he were back at his old school, with his friends...

Choldenko could have had a beautiful story, just on that. But there's also a deep dark looming secret. I'm not sure how I feel about that. It wasn't really necessary.

I did, however, love Kirsten's little sister, Kippy.

Thanks to Kelly for turning me onto this title!

You Are SO Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah! Fiona Rosenbloom

This was the very last book I read in 2006. I remember racing to the end so it would be done before we went out for New Years Eve so it would firmly end up in th 2006 pile.

Anyway, it's Bar and Bat Mitzvah season in Westchester County. So, 13 year olds dealing with the opposite gender, social ranking, friendships, divorced parents and geeky little brothers.

It's true to life while still being funny enough that it doesn't send me back into therapy.

It's a very nice coming-of-age (literally!) story.

My one complaint is that the time line is really screwed up. There are a few things that happen where the times of various events are mentioned, but it doesn't make any sense when you try to reconstruct the day. Plus, geeky little bro undergoes big changes over the book. But the book only takes place over the time span of 1 week, so that also doesn't make sense.

But this old review leads us to a new review!

We Are SO Crashing Your Bar Mitzvah! Fiona Rosenbloom

In this sequel (which I just read) Stacy and Lydia have a whole new look and can't wait to show Kelly.

Only Kelly's full time hanging out with the Chicas (mean girls!) and Stacy and Lydia aren't invited.

Literally. Queen Bee Kym's cousin Eben is having the Bar Mitzvah to end all Bar Mitzvahs and everyone else is invited.

So, Stacy and Lydia do the only sensible thing-- crash. Coupled with the outlandish lies they've been telling to make themselves seem cooler, they've spun a web that's about to catch them.

I think I liked it even better than the first one!


Susan said...

i have If a Tree Falls at home. You seem to talk about everything I intend to read but never have time to. Do you actually read all this stuff? your public has doubts. hmm.

Jennie said...

I am cut to the quick! See, Susan, you have this thing called "a life." I have books. ;)