May 31, 2007

Summer reads

Just started reading: The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCoullough
I know this was a mini-series or movie before, but I didn't watch. I will let you know how good it is. I hear it's considered a classic. We will see.

Since this post is about books I thought I'd compile a list of my favorites of all time, and if you aren't should start. You don't know what you're missing....

Not in any particular order:
-Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (beautiful and rich)
-Night by Elie Wiesel (leaves you speechless)
-Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (witty, sweet and ahead of it's time)
-The Diary of Anne Frank by Anne Frank (I'll never forget this)
-Almost Heaven by Judith McNaught (heaven of a love story)
-Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (enthralling)(see previous post for review)
-Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (she has a twisted mind)
-Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling (brilliant!)
-East of Eden by John Steinbeck (colorful characters, especially that evil Cathy)
-She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb (relatable to any woman)
-A Million Little Pieces by James Frey (even though we now know he's a fruad and this isn't a memoir, but mostly's till worth a read.)

Just finished: Julie Garwood's Ransom. I found this book highly enjoyable, considering it was about 500 pages long. It had romance, mystery and gore all rolled up in one. The setting was the early 1800's and while this book was very complicated and involved I will try to give a short synopsis.
The heroine, Gillian, and her sister Christen were small children when King John's (of England) men took over their village and their home. Before the siege, their father gave the oldest (age 7) sister ,Christen, a jeweled box and told her to hide it and not tell anyone that she had it b/c he wanted to get it to King John unharmed. Apparently this box held many secrets and was tied to King John's dead lover Arianna. Confused yet? Anyway... their father was killed when their home was overtaken and the girls were separated in the chaos. Fast forward 20 years later...Gillian was raised by her kind uncle all this time, but was taken hostage by the evil man Alford, the same man who had taken over her childhood home. He wanted that box before the king could get it and thought she or her sister had it. Gillian had no idea about where the box or her sister was, but Alford had an idea that Christen was hiding in the highlands of Scotland. In his plot to steal this box, he not only captured her (Gillian), but also a little of the highlander's sons to hold captive as ransom to get her sister Christen to return this priceless box. He enlisted Gillian to find her sister, get the box and return it to him by a certain time or the little boy and her uncle were going to be killed.
Bored yet? Ha ha!
So, Gillian being as cunning as she was escaped with the boy on her search to find her sister and to get the box back so her uncle would be safe. Because Gillian saved this young boy (Alec) the highlander's decided to let the "evil" English woman in their territory to search for her long lost sister to save their dear Uncle Morgan. This is where Gillian met Brodick..also known as Laird Sinclair. Rugged, handsome (ofcourse), arrogant (ofcourse) etc, etcetera. Brodick vows to help Gillian b/s she saved her friend's child from death and the romance between the two ensues and brings up all kinds of obstacles and challenges for both of them. And that's all I'm going to say about that. This book has much more than what I gave away. It's really a journey through time that relies on loyalty, love, betrayal, passion and intrigue. I give it 4 and a half stars, b/c it kept me entertained and I couldn't put it down to find out what happened from one page to the next. Does Gillian find her sister in time? Does her sister have the box? Does Gillian and Brodick live happily ever after in the highlands? Does she save her home and get justice? I guess you'll just have to read it and see..... (enter sinister laugh here).