June 28, 2009

TSS: Mini-Reviews

Happy last Sunday in June! Can you believe it? Halfway through 2009 already. How did that happen? Remember when time used to drag when you were a child? The older I get the faster the clock, I'm telling you. I can't imagine in 20 years how I will feel if I think time is flying by now!

Well, today (in the interest of time, perhaps?) I am offering some mini-reviews of the books I have recently read and finished. Two of the books are about Fibromyalgia, which I have, so I have included them here since they may not be of interest to some readers.

Book #: 48
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
Challenges: Banned Books Challenge, Colorful Reading, Summer Reading List
Rating: 3.5 Stars
30-Second Thoughts:
I listened to the audio version of this book. It was read by Morrison herself, although I did not think she added anything to the story in her reading. This is my 2nd Morrison novel (Beloved being the first) and while I think that her awards are much deserved based on the importance of her messages and what the reader comes away with knowing, her writing does not flow to me. I find it slow, choppy, and almost tedious. I do think audio was the way to go, though, because I don't think I would have finished this one reading it myself and, like I said, I thought the message was an important one.

Book #: 49
From Fatigued to Fantastic: A Proven Program to Regain Vibrant Health...for Fibromyalgia
Challenges: None
Rating: 3 Stars
30-Second Thoughts:
Although this one is a bit old for a health book, it is one of the foremost books on FMS and it still had some bits of wisdom to offer. A couple of things were outdated, for example FMS is now considered a neurological disorder, but here are a couple of things I did pick up: 1. The book had a nice table of the types of tests you have the right to ask for if you are experiencing certain symptoms. Interestingly, many of them I had not known about. 2. It also had information on co-morbid diseases (diseases that come with the main joy of FMS), some of which I had not known about and found interesting to read. Overall, a decent reference book, but needs updating again.

Book #: 50
Maximum Ride Series (Book 1): The Angel Experiment by James Patterson
Challenges: Triple 999 Challenge, Genre Challenge, Summer Reading List
Rating: 4.5 Stars
30-Second Thoughts:
The idea for this series came from 2 of Patterson's previous novels, When the Wind Blows and The Lake House, which I adored. Max is the main character and the children were created as experiments and had escaped. However, that is about where the similarities end. Two of my favorite characters in the other books, Frannie and Kit, are not in this series. I missed them. But I still thought Patterson wrote a great fantasy thriller that can satisfy both teens and adults. I will continue with the series. :)
Book #: 51
Your Personal Guide to Living Well with Fibromyalgia by The Arthritis Foundation
Challenges: Triple 999 Challenge
Rating: 4.5 Stars
30-Second Thoughts:
This book has gotten a bad rep on Amazon.com but I thought it to be a pretty good guide.
The Pros:
~How to set and follow realistic goals (a problem with the overachiever personalities that overwhelmingly tend to get FMS)
~Tables, diagrams, and illustrations making information easier to locate and consume.
~"Ask the Doctor", "Pain Management Plan", and "Holmes Scales" worksheets to help the patient keep better organized and find correlations between activities, environments, and symptoms.
~Personal stories from a variety of people with FMS
~How to overcome the grief post-diagnosis and get back your life by using modifications to continue enjoying things you always did.

The Cons:
~No information on legal disability issues, a major concern for those with a disability
~Not much information concerning new findings about the disease, but that wasn't really the point of this particular guide, either.
Overall, a great guide and resource for fibromyalgia patients.

Other Reviews of The Bluest Eye:

Other Reviews of From Fatigued to Fantastic:

Other Reviews of The Angel Experiment:
Other Reviews of Your Personal Guide...:


  1. I have to admit I've never read James Patterson and have no idea what sort of books he writes. I assume he writes mysteries?

  2. It's hard to believe we're half way through the year already. I'm with you, the older I've gotten, the quicker time flies. I'm sorry The Bluest Eye wasn't better for you. I love Morrison's writing, although I confess sometimes her symbolism goes right over my head.

    I haven't read the Maximum Ride Series by Patterson, but I've heard it's really good. I am glad you enjoyed it!

    I hope you have a great week, Rebecca! I'm hoping to spend much of Sunday reading, but we'll see how that goes. The best laid plans and all that. :-)

  3. How do you like Toni Morrison's books? I'm a little scared they'll be too much for me, so I've never read any of them.

  4. lol, I just finished my Sunday Salon post and it starts with a paragraph exactly like yours! Time really DOES seem to go by faster the older you get.

  5. You've had a busy week. I'm not crazy about Patterson's Maximum Ride series - it's too fantastical for me.

  6. I've got The Bluest Eye in my tbr pile. Interesting that Morrison read her own work - my Sunday Salon post today is on audiobooks with authors as readers!

  7. Interesting books! Thanks for the reviews of FMS books - reviews on them are hard to find!

  8. Half a year already. Yikes! I haven't tried the Maximum Ride series.

  9. I saw a play adaptation of The Bluest Eye and it rendered the dialogue exceptionally poignant and articulate. Not choppy at all. I read it the first time in college as a freshman and was confused and frustrated. When I revisited decades later and after seeing the play, I had a better appreciation for her work. I think she is brilliant but her work is steeped in symbolism and language is dense. I think if you recogonize the influence Faulkner has had on her writing, it's easy to see why her work is so highly respected. Still, in terms of personal preference, she's not high on my list.

  10. Time is going by so fast! It's amazing that the year is halfway over.I've read The Bluest Eye. Morrison is a talented writer.


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