Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Double post: A Desirable Residence & Say the Word

I've been neglecting this thing ... hence, a double post.

1) A Desirable Residence, by Madeleine Wickham.

It must be nice in the summer, she thought, forgetting that this still was, to all intents and purposes, the summer. Her mind always worked at least half a term ahead.

Wickham is better known as Sophie Kinsella, the author of the "Shopaholic" series, of which I am a big fan. Her real name is apparently Madeleine Wickham, and there are a few books she wrote before her Kinsella years, such as this one. This was one of the earliest ones and it was fine, but I like her later novels much better. The 'voice' was completely different from that of her "Shopaholic" books; yes, this is still a chick lit novel, but it caters to a different crowd.

2.5 stars out of 5.

2) Say the Word, by Jeannine Garsee.

Normally I make a terrific hostess. I like to plan menus and select flowers for the centerpiece. I enjoy deciding which set of china will look best on our formal, twelve-foot-long table. This only shows you how desperately dull my life really is.

An interesting YA book. Shawna's mother, who left her and her father ten years ago, has just died, and secrets are starting to arise. The reason her mother left them was to be with her lover, Fran, and she and Fran raised Fran's two boys together. Her will, however, was never updated, and so Shawna's father gets everything; this forces Fran's family into almost-poverty and they move from New York to Cleveland Heights, where Shawna and her dad live, to stay with an aunt.

The book was pretty good. Shawna starts to question herself and the people around her, and Garsee does an excellent job of showing this as well as the consequences and fallout that occurs.

4 stars out of 5.

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