Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Few Good Books

I love to read but somehow I got out of the habbit the past however many years. Just recently I decided to make a real effort to start reading again. I actually own a lot of books that I had never gotten around to reading along with some good books that I would enjoy re-reading. That's not to mention all the movies that are coming out based on books where I often like to read the book first, knowing that it will always be better than the movie! Below are some reviews on some books I have recently finished.

LA Candy Book Review

I am a huge Lauren Conrad fan, from Laguna Beach to The Hills, I have always idolized her. She's actually one of the top people I'd like to meet. I have a lot of respect for everything she's done in her career outside of reality tv and I love her style. I am looking forward to her style book coming out next fall. Because of who Laruen is, I automatically bought her book without even thinking about it. I actually started to read it over the summer and just never got around to finishing it. This has nothing to do with the book being lame, just simply that I was not in reading mode this summer. Once I started it over recently, I had trouble putting it down! They say not to judge a book by its' cover but this book is as guilty of a please as it's sugary sweet exterior. This book is about two girls who move to LA and get invited to be on a show that is geared to be a "reality version of Sex and the City" while following the lives of 4 girls in LA. While it is clearly a fictional story, Laruen has admitted to "writing what you know" and gives some insightful looks into the life of a reality tv star including fake friends being forced together, getting mic'd in the parking lot before going into clubs, perfectly lit scenes and getting prompts via text in what to say and talk about while living your life on camera. While this book is geared more towards teens, as a 24 year old, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Also, being the first of three books, it actually ended with me begging for more. Thankfully I waited to read it until right before the next book, Sweet Little Lies, hit store shelves...

Sweet Little Lies Book Review

In Sweet Little Lies, Lauren does a great job of continuing to develop the characters from her first hit, LA Candy. This second installment of the three book series picks up right where the first book left off. I did notice some repetition between the two books but I think it was done tastefully, just a way to explain certain incidents and situations that happened in LA Candy to refresh the minds of readers who may not have read them so close together or, for that rare reader who may have never read the first book. I think I may have read this book even faster than the first one, always eager to know what was going to happen next! One thing I love about the way both of these books were written is that all of the chapter titles include a line from within the chapter. After reading the chapter title, my mind immediately starts wondering where that chapter is going to lead. I also like the fact that different chapters are from different characters' point of view. It definitely gives certain characters more depth instead of a typical one person or third person point of view. I also recently heard that Lauren sold the rights to an LA Candy Movie so I am definitely looking forward to that along with the third book; I wonder what that title will be?

Dear John Book Review

The third book I recently dove into was Nicholas Sparks' latest box office hit, Dear John. I have been a Nicholas Sparks fan ever since I read "A Walk to Remember" and "The Notebook" (back before it became a major motion picture). Both of these stories are so heartwarming yet sad and Nicholas Sparks does an amazing job of turning that combination into something beautiful. Dear John is no exception to this. Once I heard that they were making a movie of this book and that it might actually be comparable to The Notebook, which is one of the best movie versions of a book that I have personally ever seen, I knew I had to rush to the book store so I could read it before I watched it. This book was from John's perspective, a young man in the Army who meets a girl named Savannah while home on leave one summer. The book takes you through their two-week whirlwind romance and the pain and heartache that goes along with being in a military relationship when John has to go back to Germany. There is a touching side story with John and his father that I actually fell in love with more than the main story line. Without ruining anything, I will say that some people may judge this story due to the ending of the book, but I hope that you won't. I hope that anyone reading this story will realize that life isn't the way that it is supposed to be, it is the way that it is, it's how you deal with it that makes all the difference. After reading the book, I did go ahead and see the movie recently after and I was slightly disappointed. There were a few big differences that I didn't understand. I know that some things work better in books and some things in movies, but the differences I noticed seemed pointless and didn't add anything to the movie, detracted if anything. The story between John and his father, while not identical, was done very well and was my favorite part in the movie as it was in the book. But the rest of the movie left something to be desired after expecting more from reading the book. Also, the ending is completely different which made me angry. I would definitely recommend this book and while you will be disappointed in the movie, I still urge you to read the book first. Watch the movie, but take it with a grain of salt. Understand that you can appreciate the movie for what it is on its' own, but I personally cannot accept it as an adequate portrayal of the book.