Good Reads : Unbroken

Personal

I’m off to Texas this morning for a meeting and even though I’ll return home tonight, choosing a book to take has proven to be a pain-staking process. I’m not deep into a certain book yet (having just finished one), so I stared at my book shelf and debated what spine to pull (here’s a picture of my options). Did I ever mention that I owned a library as a kid? And right about NOW you’re realizing that, yes, I’m proving every homeschooler stereotype.

I had shelves of books and an index box with corresponding cards alphabetized by author name, just as my local librarian, Mrs Blum, taught me. I dusted my library shelves and even charged fines to those who didn’t return my books on time. It was a good thing I was fat as a kid or else I’d be worried about getting beat up for charging fees.

Years later, I still keep tabs on my books, even though I hate admitting this. Once my sister and I got into an argument because I wouldn’t let her borrow a book because I said she wouldn’t return it. I relented…but scribbled my name in the corner of the book JUST SO SHE’D KNOW WHO SHE WAS MESSING WITH. It’s a wonder I have friends in real life.

I recently added these books to my library and here’s my opinions on these Good Reads…
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I didn’t know what to think of this book because I picked it up from the Teen Fiction section at Barnes&Noble…I slithered through the aisle to snag it before anyone noticed it was perched next to the Twilight series. I heard great things about it, but was warned it focused on a teen battling cancer. In light of losing Grace, my friends weren’t sure it was proper time, but I dove it and loved every minute. I cried (and cried) at the end of the story because it’s impeccably written, moving, real, and raw. Green writes in a way that makes the reader fully invested in the story and beg to find cures for a disease that robs many good souls. I loved it.

All Over but the Shoutin’ by Rick Bragg. Make no mistake…this book is good (and very well written), but I just couldn’t get invested in the story. It’s the biography of Bragg’s mother’s life and while poignant, it was a little slow moving and extraordinarily descriptive. I mean, I like words, but Bragg chains them together to make you feel like you’re stuck in the hills of Mississippi licking moonshine off your chapped lips. Every.single.chapter. I have a ton of respect for his family and his hard working mother, but I’d likely pass if given the option to read it again.

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. Okay, WHERE DO I START WITH THIS BOOK?! My friend Gail suggested I read it, but she warned me it’d likely be different from what we normally read. Penned by the author of Seabiscuit (strike one), it focused on World War II (strike two…I don’t like violence), and chronicled the amazing life of Louis Zamperini, an American Olympian drafted for the war then taken as a Japanese prisoner of war (strike three…I don’t like prisoners). For some reason, I skeptically picked it up…then couldn’t put it down. It’s 400 odd pages, but I was hooked from beginning to end. It reads like a Hollywood movie and if there weren’t so many legal documents verifying the truth of his life’s odessey, I might never believe the strength of the human spirit. I finished feeling refreshed, emboldened, and challenged to live life bigger than I could have imagined. So, so good!

Happy Wednesday and if you borrow one of my books…LATE FEES!!!