Monday, January 31, 2011

I Dig Reading Challenge: January Update + 2 quick reviews

I dig reading.
I am happy to report my results for January's I Dig Reading Challenge. I completed nine books over the course of the month. That means I will donate $45.00 to my cause of choice, the Aussie flood relief.

The books I read this month included:

Prada and Prejudice
The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate
The Help
If I stay, and
The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

I haven't yet had a chance to review If I Stay or The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. Don't let that reflect on my enjoyment of the books: both were fantastic. I am crunched for time these days. So let me catch up with two brief reviews.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Tiny synopsis: Mia and her family are in a horrendous car accident. Mia's spirit waits outside her body in ICU, trying to decide if she should stay or go. 

A really fantastic book: I now understand why it's gotten the buzz. This book is about a potentially sensational topic, but I didn't feel the author sensationalized it. I am not sure if this is clear. What I mean is, she could have used this as an opportunity to wallow in the destruction and tragedy that is the auto accident. Instead, it's really a means to an end: an opportunity for Mia to explore her own life, her incredible family, their friends, and her first love. It is a sweet, sad, and magical book.

 The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie could not be more different.

Tiny synopsis: precocious Flavia de Luce witnesses the last breath of a dying man. His final words set her on a path working to unravel the mystery of this stranger, and his connection to her father.

This is one of those books that, although the MC is an eleven year old, is not considered YA or MG. Don't let that stop you. It's a stupendous adventure, including a mystery with so many twists and turns my own book feels slight in comparison. I also ADORE that Alan Bradley is a 70-year-old debut author.


  1. I love Flavia! I need to read the second book...I was sent the third for review. It's awesome that you're giving to the flood relief fund.

  2. I'm so glad you liked Sweetness. I LOVED that book!

  3. I thoroughly enjoyed Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, read Matched also this month and plan to listen to Linger soon.

  4. Oh I love Flavia so much! The second one is wonderful as well.

  5. Too right, Mrs. De Raps and Carrie. Isn't Flavia fantastic? What a character.

    Meredith, it was so good, wasn't it? I loved the complexity of the mystery.

    Jennifer, wasn't Calpurnia delightful? She made me appreciate the era to which I'd been born.

  6. Yay! I read 5 books -- not as many as I'd hoped. Let's see, I read:

    THE MUMMY CASE by Elizabeth Peters
    DIVERGENT by Veronica Roth
    HEREAFTER by Tara Hudson

    I'm going to donate to Running Strong - $5 each book. I may hold off, though, and also donate to them in February. We'll see. :)


  7. I read If I Stay yesterday... just, wow. As somebody who's spent a lot of time around ICUs, I thought it was incredibly well done.

    I got through seven in January:
    Matched – Ally Condie
    The Unusual Suspects (Sisters Grimm 2) – Michael Buckley
    The Adventurous Four – Enid Blyton
    The Boxcar Children – Gertrude Chandler Warner
    Leviathan – Scott Westerfeld
    Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief – Rick Riordan
    Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters – Rick Riordan

    Still deciding where to donate, but I'll be posting it on my blog once it goes through. I'm also upping my donation amount to $5 per book, so that'll be $35 to this month's charity.


YAY for comments! Thanks for adding to the conversation.