Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Relief, Indeed!

The Sweet Relief of Missing ChildrenThe Sweet Relief of Missing Children by Sarah Braunstein

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Five stories going back and forth through time.....ending, or focusing, on the disappearance of 12-year old Leonora Coulter...deemed a "good" girl by her family and friends...a girl who got caught in a 'twist of fate"

Five sets of characters who interact with each other in unexpected ways throughout the book.

Awkward, damaged people going through life with enough "baggage" to down an airplane.

Small town life...the flip side of Bucolic

The awkward style of this book bothered, and distracted, me...until i realized it was perfect for these characters...most of whom are searching for reinvention...seeking acceptance, and comfort, and a sense of identity. The surprising ways in which they interact and separate remind me of broken glass on the sidewalk....that, in spite of the separateness of the pieces, the whole splintered mess, in fact, forms a weird kind of Whole

This wasn't an easy read and these people are not lovable......the atmosphere was desperate, claustrophobic, and strange....In an odd way I like it, and respect Ms Braunstein for letting her characters speak in their own tongues...

*this was an ARC from Library Thing Early Readers*

3 stars

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Saturday, April 2, 2011

Is Dinner Ready?

One Bite Won't Kill YouOne Bite Won't Kill You by Ann Hodgman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is one of my "Reviews-on-the-Fly"....Be Warned:

I became aware of this book through some Childrens Catalogue (to remain nameless because I can't remember) where it was tucked in the last pages.

Now that i own my copy...I was looking at it, the other night...and figured it needed a review

Ann Hodgman is a wonderful comedienne "on the page"...and Roz Chast is...well..."i swoon" at her talent..

The book itself is full of recipes...some good..some bland. BUT...this book is geared toward parents with kids who are "picky eaters" alien life form, when I was a kid. I ate what was served...or creeped downstairs after dark for a bowl of cereal...UNTIL i learned how to cook....for my own self ( and after my Mom went AWOL). Ms Hodgman does a bang up job in the Introduction....explaining the world of "Kids & Food"...i skipped kids here...Her Afterword WHY NONE OF THIS it.

The recipes:

BROC BAKE-page220- is seriously sure to use Fresh Broccoli

PERFECT BROILED CHICKEN-page68- is just that

BREAKFAST "ZA-page 29- is so good..and a good reason to keep Crescent Roll Dough "in the house'

I recommend this to anyone who has to feed kids every day..if only for the humor element....and to anyone who loves to cook...and can tweak otherwise pedestrian recipes

4 Stars