Friday, June 28, 2013

Small Things & Books

Lots to talk about today so let's just jump right to it, shall we?

First up is Celebrate The Small Things hosted by VikLit where participants share whatever they happen to be celebrating from the past week. Here are my celebrations:

—The Red Sox are in first place in the AL East. I am clinging to this at the moment because (although it always makes me happy when the Sox are in first place) it's been a rough week for Boston sports. But, seriously, congratulations to the Blackhawks who beat the Bruins in the Stanley Cup finals. It was a great series.

—I took my niece to the mall this week. It's always fun to take her shopping. I don't remember being that into clothes and shopping when I was her age, and I certainly don't have her talent for putting outfits together. As she reminds me often. This trip, she looked at what I was wearing and said, "Well, it matches." Anyway, we had a great time and I bought a new pair of jeans. That were on clearance. Win-win.

—I've read a couple of awesome books, which is a perfect segue into my next topic...

The Cephalopod Coffeehouse (June 2013 edition)...

This monthly book club is hosted by The Armchair Squid and asks participants to share their thoughts on the books they most enjoyed that month. Since I love talking about books and adding new titles to my TBR list, this seemed like a perfect group for me.

While I will post every book I read this month in a few days, the one title I've selected to feature here is...

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Here's the synopsis from Goodreads:

Set over the course of one school year in 1986, ELEANOR AND PARK is the story of two star-crossed misfits – smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try. When Eleanor meets Park, you’ll remember your own first love – and just how hard it pulled you under.

I LOVED THIS BOOK.  I loved the characters. It's a dual POV that alternates between the two MCs, and I loved the character voices. They felt real to me. I love that it takes place in the 80's because I am a total 80's child. I love the music it mentions, and the movies and television shows.

And I love, love, LOVE the fact that this book has a Dicey Tillerman reference. I don't know if you know who Dicey Tillerman is but she's the MC of a YA series (first book is Homecoming by Cynthia Voigt) that I have loved for years. She is on the list of my all-time favorite literary characters and when I read her name in this book, I squealed with delight.

I just wish this story had gone on longer. Which is weird because I loved the ending and thought it was very fitting for the book, but I didn't want it to end. I wanted to stay with these characters and follow them around everywhere they went and press my face up against their living room windows just so I wouldn't miss a moment of their lives.

Unless that's weird. Then I don't want to do that. 

Except I totally do.

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That's gonna do it for me today. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great weekend!

53 comments:

  1. I'm so glad you chose this book because it's near the top of my to-read list -- I've heard such good things about it. Your review makes me want to read it right now!

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    1. You really should read it right now!!

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  2. This is on my TBR list and now I'll bump it closer to the top. Thanks for the review. Did you see Rowel has another one coming out, called FANGIRL? (I think Rowell is the author but I might be confused.)

    Oh, and Dicey! I didn't recognize the name when I first read it but then when I saw HOMECOMING, I was like OH! I LOVED THAT BOOK, HOW COULD I HAVE FORGOTTEN?! This is what getting older does. Sigh.

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    1. Yeah, she has a few books out and more coming out. And I really want to read them all.

      So glad you know and love Dicey!

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  3. First, I'm delighted that you are participating. Thank you.

    Eleanor & Park sounds like fun - very clever design on the cover, too. First love is certainly a tantalizing subject and I like the idea of dual-POV. '80s references? I now a certain Suze (of Subliminal Coffee) who will be up for that!

    Someone - I want to say Vonnegut - once wrote that a strong story of what comes before and what comes after. I think your strong attachment to the characters, despite your satisfaction with the ending, speaks well for this book.

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    1. Sigh...

      That was supposed to say "a strong story HAS A SENSE of what comes before and what comes after."

      No excuses, either - I've already had two cups of coffee!!!

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  4. It's only weird if you start licking the window.

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    1. So I should stop doing that, then?

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    2. It's also unsanitary, so I would say yes.

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  5. Sounds as though you're really into your sport. Go Red Sox! I live quite close to the Silverstone Racing Circuit where the British round of the Fourmula 1 championship is on this weekend. The talk around here is of Ferrari and Red Bull Racing Team and the like.

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    1. My grandfather-in-law would love to be there. He loves racing.

      I love baseball. And football. And hockey. And tennis.

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  6. I want to read this so bad! Good to hear you loved it. :)

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    1. I definitely think it worth reading.

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  7. I was an 80s kid too. I love reading references I understand in books.

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    1. Me too. I feel so smart. Like I'm part of an inside joke or something.

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  8. Yay, Red Sox! I keep waiting for it to crumble, but they're probably waiting for the last few weeks, just to grind it in. : p

    And yeah, heard a lot about that book and looked it up a month ago. Didn't like the opening scene on the bus much, 'cause that one jerk was so annoying, but from what you say, I should look at it again.

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    1. They wouldn't be the Red Sox if they didn't do that. =)

      And yeah, that one jerk was very annoying in the opening scene and is occasionally annoying in other scenes, but it's worth it.

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  9. Ooo... an 80's book. Sounds great. I had to smile at the shopping thing. I'm always amazed by my daughter's fashion sense - something I never quite got into either. Almost inspiring :)

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    1. I am constantly amazed by the outfits she puts together. She's a fashion designer on the rise!

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  10. Once again, great celebrations. Eleanor and park sounds awesome.

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  11. My husband is a Yankee fan and my new son-in-law is a great Red Sox fan--whoa--what fun!!! I love to shop with my girls they have fashion sense, unlike myself. Glad you had fun with your niece. And, by your writing I can tell your head over heels for this book, Eleanor and Park, sounds great!!

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    1. Two of my closest friends are Yankee fans. We have a lot of fun giving each other a hard time. Of course, I have even more fun when my team's in first place and theirs isn't...

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  12. There are books that I want to do that with too! Not weird at all because, you know, I'm so totally normal. *coughs* Yes, uh, have a good weekend!

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    1. Well, if two of us want to do that, it can't be all that weird, right? =)

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  13. New jeans and on sale! That's definitely a win-win. Add in a great time with your niece and you've got a perfect day.

    I loved the "star crossed misfits."

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    1. It was a very good day. We always have a good time when we get together.

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  14. I had a librarian in the '80s who picked out all the books I read. Homecoming was one of them. I read a lot of good books in my teen years.

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    1. I don't think I read Homecoming in my teens. I'm pretty sure it was later on, but I'm just grateful to have found it at all.

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  15. Thanks for sharing your celebrations and for telling us about the book. It's certainly a sign of a good book if you wish it didn't end!

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  16. I'm saving my sports squee-ing until the NFL season starts. Congrats on the clearance sale jeans! Things that are a bargain are twice as delightful. I'm happy for your book love -- it's wonderful to find something that stays with you long after you finish it. :-)

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    1. I'm fearing NFL season a little bit right now. I'm a Pats fan and my team is having waaaaaaaaay too interesting an off-season thus far.

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  17. It is very hard to except the ending of a really good book.

    Hugs and chocolate,
    Shelly

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  18. Oh this sounds like it's right up my alley and hearing how much you enjoyed it makes me that much more excited to read this. Thanks!!

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  19. Eleanor & Park does sound wonderful. And I may look into the book club, so thanks for sharing that. I remember the fun times I had taking my niece, and even my nephew shopping. They're all grown up now. Sigh...

    Have a great weekend :)

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  20. I tried to read this one but it struck me as largely charmless. Perhaps I didn't give it enough time to grow on me. Your enthusiastic review certainly speaks well for it.

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  21. Oh, man, I haven't thought of Homecoming in years. I loved that series! I need to do a re-read...

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  22. I've seen that book around quite a lot recently, it must be good!

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  23. I have just got Eleanor and Park so I look forward to reading it!

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  24. I think I'm the only person who didn't thoroughly enjoy Eleanor & Park! It just didn't do it for me :\

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    1. I've read some reviews on Goodreads that says you're not the only person who didn't love this book.

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  25. Your niece wouldn't think any more of my fashion sense, either. She'd probably say even my t-shirt and jeans don't match.

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    1. I live in tee shirts and jeans. I'm a serious fashion don't.

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  26. Hi MJ! Thanks so much for connecting with me! I'm happy your team is in butt-kicking position and that you're reading so many books- that's great!

    And what a great endorsment you gave that book! Being so in love with the characters that you want to stalk them is a huge compliment to the author.

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    1. I hope someday someone feels the same about characters I've created.

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  27. I felt the same way about a book I recently finished. The ending was perfect - a little bit hopeful, a little sad, everything wasn't resolved - sort of like life. But I really wanted to stay in that town with those characters and read more about their lives and what they did next. And I agree, I'd be thrilled if someone felt that way about my books.

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  28. Glad you had such a great day shopping with J.

    Eleanor and Park sounds good, but I've just started my 80's piece de resistance READY PLAYER ONE. I know, I'm late to the party on this awesomeness, but I have lots of good excuses. None of which would hold up in court.

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  29. I have a friend who read Eleanor & Park this year and loved it, but I had absolutely no idea what it was. Now I do! Glad to hear this was worth the read for you. :)

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  30. madeline diected me to this review i missed! that book sounds wonderful! thanks!

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