10:09 AM

10) Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith

I've got to say that this book was a pleasant surprise.  Usually I don't read books about vampires or politicians, but something made me pick this one up.  I thought the idea of Old Abe as an axe-wielding vampire slayer was too funny not to explore.  Perhaps it's just because I'm a native Illinoisian, but this book was wonderful.  It read much like a regular biography, which the vampire storyline woven in between.  That being said, however, I DO NOT typically like biographies and find they read like a really boring list of events.  Grahame-Smith's writing was captivating throughout the novel.  His simply storytelling skills are what make such a subject so enjoyable to read.  I also have to say that everything in this book made sense as far as how the vampire situation affected Abe's life and political goals.  Everything fit like a glove and I didn't feel like there were any pieces missing or pieces forced to fit when in reality they just didn't.  Wonderful book and has a lot of true, interesting information about Abe Lincoln, although I wouldn't read it for that purpose.

Favorite quote:  "Without death," he answered, "life is meaningless.  It is a story that can never be told.  A song that can never be sung.  For how would one finish it?"

7:12 AM

9) The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker

This book has been on my reading list since I first saw it advertised in Bookpage.  I've waited oh-so patiently for it to come out on paperback and finally got around to reading it.  There's no other way to describe this book than disappointing.  It really has such potential, but the author falls short of creating anything memorable. 

Her characters are larger than life (Truly is literally so), but they have the depth of a puddle.  As a reader, you never really get to see any real emotion from the characters.  I expect Truly, the so-called giant, to show a little more sadness at the loss of her beloved sister.  And when things go wrong with Amelia, a friend who's more to Truly than her real sister ever was, it's almost like she feels nothing at all.  A few paragraphs tell us that Truly is heartbroken by this tragedy, but we never see it. 

That's one thing I couldn't get over about this book.  I really wanted to like it, but I just couldn't.  My writing teachers have always said that you need to SHOW the readers what's going on, instead of simply TELLING them.  Although the difference is subtle, I think it makes all the difference, especially in a book like this.