CBR Gift Exchange – Belated Thanks!!

A huge and very belated thank you to Black Raven for this fantastic gift!! I’ve already read Cinderella is Dead since receiving it and these were both perfect choices for me. My sincerest apologies for the late post. You’ll notice I haven’t reviewed in awhile, and that’s because I had a baby in June! I’m a stay at home mom now, and still trying to find my feet a little, so I’m prone to forgetting to do things like this post.

Happy holidays to you all!!

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It’s been great. Thanks for being a part of this wonderful experience!

Well folks, it’s officially done.  Yes, I know that Cannonball Read III officially ended on December 31st, and you all had until January 7th to get your last reviews written, but that still left me with the responsibility of figuring out how many reviews you all had written.  As I mentioned in the email I sent out yesterday, January is a busy month for me, so it took even longer than I expected.  But it’s done!  If you missed the post on Pajiba, you can find it here.

Here are the numbers, in case you were wondering:

Whole Cannonball (or more) – 25 Cannonballers!  That’s almost twice the number who completed a Whole Cannonball last year.

Half Cannonball (or more) – 17 Cannonballers.

Quarter Cannonball (or more) – 15 Cannonballers

Thanks again to everyone who joined in, whether you wrote a review or not.  As I mentioned before, I simply love what the Cannonball Read stands for, a bunch of folks reading together, forming a community, and honoring AlabamaPink.

Now, onto Cannonball Read IV!

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dsbs’s CBR III Review #19 and 20: The Iliad and the Odyssey by Homer


Ok, so for my minor in Classical Civilization (aka Greek and Roman studies), I’m taking a class in Greek and Roman Literary Genres, and naturally, I had to read the big three: The Iliad, The Odyssey, and The Aeneid. Now, I feel strange as hell writing reviews of the classics – their impact on society is already so established that it almost feels redundant to write a review – that’s why I’m not assigning stars to these books. So what I’d like to do is write a quick little piece on my opinions while reading the book, and then post the essay I wrote for that class, examining the themes of death and honour in Greek society.

The review part is only three paragraphs, though. Seriously, no one has to read the essay 😛

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I’m Still Tallying, Just FYI.

Hey Folks,

Just wanted to let you know that I am, in fact, still working on the wrap-up for CBR-III.  I’ve been busy lately and it’s amazing how long it takes to check each of you out to see where you ended up!

Hopefully, by early next week I’ll have it all done and ready to go up on Pajiba.

Thanks for your patience.


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genericwhitegirl’s CBR book #31: Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

If you’re into Twilight or other angsty teenage supernatural type books, then you’ll probably dig Beautiful Creatures. Now that I’ve mentioned Twilight, some of you die-hard fans (I am not one of them) might want to know which is better…honestly, I’m not sure. I think Twilight fans would still prefer the Twilight books to Beautiful Creatures, but with three books already in the series, Beautiful Creatures may be worth a deeper look.

Okay, now I’m talking to normal people. This book is along the lines of the Twilight series so…possibly an entertaining, brainless read with a cup of annoying and over dramatic mixed in.

Basically, Beautiful Creatures takes place in the small town of Gatlin, South Carolina, where the civil war is still the biggest news of the day. Ethan Wate, a sophomore in high school, has his friends and basketball team. But then Lena Duchannes comes to town. The niece of the town’s mysterious recluse, Lena’s welcome in Gatlin is anything but. Ethan, however, is strangely drawn to Lena. Haunted by a recurring dream, Lena seems to be the clue to Ethan understanding it. As their friendship develops, Ethan learns more and more about Lena’s family and all of its supernatural secrets.

I think this story focuses more on the relationship between Ethan and Lena (read: a love story) as opposed to really exploring and understanding Lena’s supernatural world. In that sense, I found the book lacking. I love being immersed in new worlds but the perspective is Ethan’s so you feel just as in the dark as he does about all the interesting things Lena is privy to. Of course, things are slowly revealed throughout the book, but I still had a lot of questions and wanted to know more. I suppose that’s the point of a series though, isn’t it? Perhaps I’ll read the second book to discover more. But I’m not sure the first book entranced me enough to go to the trouble.

Read The Blist for more reviews by genericwhitegirl.

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genericwhitegirl’s CBR book #30: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

I’d seen the Disney cartoon, the Johnny Depp version, and a creepier version on TV back when I was younger…so I thought it appropriate to pick up the actual book and experience Lewis Carroll firsthand.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was written by Carroll (a pseudonym for Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) in 1865. Apparently Carroll was a man of many hats (author, poet, mathematician, logician…is that a word?). And this book showcases all of these hats, although with characters like the mad hatter wearing them, things get a bit…strange. Apparently, according to wikipedia, and I’m sure a host of other web sites, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is rife with literary allusions and symbolism. But it was all lost on me. I suppose this book would be more interesting studied and picked apart in an academic setting than just as a summer read. Because as the latter, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. But I guess that’s the point, since Carroll specializes in the literary nonsense genre (didn’t make that up).

Alice’s story begins in her garden, where she finds a rabbit hole and falls down into a fantasy world. Each chapter is a new adventure in Wonderland, with new characters and silly situations. A lot of what happens in the book reminds me of a dream. Events are random, don’t make a whole lot of sense, and crazy seems to be the norm. I won’t go into details about the story itself…I think most of you are familiar with Alice in Wonderland in one way or another. I’ll just skip to my impressions. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy the book as much as I had hoped. In fact, it took me awhile to read – I’d pick it up between reading other books. As silly as the story is, I didn’t find myself that interested in it. I guess a lot of the humor and irony was over my head.

Would I recommend it? Not for a casual read. And definitely not as a children’s book. I think of all the versions I’ve seen, the one that I liked the most was the 1985 Alice in Wonderland movie which also included a sequel, Through the Looking Glass. I just remember they were creepy as all hell and Through the Looking Glass featured one of my favorite poems, Jabberwocky (also written by Carroll). Of course, I was only 6 when the first movie came out, so it’s probably cheesier than a can of whiz. But given the source material, I can’t really say it’s too far off base.

Read The Blist for more book reviews by genericwhitegirl.

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Tits McGee CBRIII Reviews 10 – 26

I finally finished up the reviews for my half-cannonball, and I couldn’t be more proud. Congratulations to everyone else out there who has participated! I hope to see you all again for the CBR IV.

See below for the reviews:

Book 10 – BossyPants by Tina Fey

Book 11 – Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler

Book 12 – Fauna by Alissa York

Books 13 to 17 – Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin

Book 18 – Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda

Book 19 to 21 – The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins

Book 22 to 24 – The last three Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling

Book 25 – The Free World by David Bezmozgis

Book 26 – Eragon by Christopher Paolini

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Jelinas’ CBR-III Review #53: Black Hole by Charles Burns

black hole

I actually completed a “Baker’s Cannonball” (H/T Sara H) this year, and I closed out my reading for 2011 with Charles Burns’ Black Hole. It’s absolutely fantastic, but you can’t unsee what has been seen.


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Jelinas’ CBR-III Review #52: 1776 by David McCullough


I’m late, as usual. But, hey, I’ve been up all night baking, so it’s still January 7th to me.

I’m ending Cannonball Read III with a beginning: The beginning of our nation. 1776 is a real page-turner, and a great primer on the Revolutionary War.

That’s a Cannonball! WHEEEE!!

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Cb# 52! Miscellany

I just wanted to make sure that my last review squeaks in under the wire. Here is a short review of Snuff by Terry Pratchett and Darwin’s Bastards.

Also, here is my review of my favourite reads this year, which includes The Magicians, The Magician King and The Night Circus.

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