Book Review ~ SAIL

Summary: “Since the death of her husband, Anne Dunne and her three children have struggled in every way. In a last ditch effort to save the family, Anne plans an elaborate sailing vacation to bring everyone together once again. But only an hour out of port, everything is going wrong. The teenage daughter, Carrie, is planning to drown herself. The teenage son, Mark, is high on drugs and ten-year-old Ernie is nearly catatonic. This is the worst vacation ever.  Anne manages to pull things together bit by bit, but just as they begin feeling like a family again, something catastrophic happens. Survival may be the least of their concerns.  Written with the blistering pace and shocking twists that only James Patterson can master, SAIL takes “Lost” and “Survivor” to a new level of terror.”

Sail

“Sail” was not the book that I read about above.  Maybe I went in slightly skeptical and not wanting it to be very good, but it really ended up not being very good.  I never connected with any of the characters and plot lines so it was hard to be committed.  I think I probably could have read “Sail” in three days but instead I wasn’t turning each page with anticipation and at a “blistering pace” so it took me a long five days to finish it. 

Anne Dunne takes her not so happy children out on a summer sailing trip on the family sailboat, “The Family Dunne” (pronounced DONE).  She has remarried since the untimely death of her first husband to Peter Carlyle, Esq.  Carlyle is a shark of the legal world but he may also be the ‘shark’ that tries to end the lives of his new family.  The sailing trip is lead by Anne’s former brother-in-law, Jake Dunne.  After some unfortunate ‘accidents’ in the first few days of the trip on “The Family Dunne”, a storm of tremendous fury takes the boat on a rip roaring trip that takes the family further into a perilous vacation. 

With some side steps to build up the character of a DEA Agent as well as to shed light on the darker side of perfect Peter Carlyle, Esq., the story fails to deliver any real ‘shocking twists’.  I will admit that I gasped after reading one twist that I didn’t quite see coming, but for the most part I felt let down by the “#1 Thriller Author In The World”.   

I used to enjoy the books that James Patterson cranks out and back in 2001 I even attended one of his book signings but for the life of me I can’t remember which book he was promoting.  My signed copy is in a storage unit outside Memphis, TN.  I had come across a question on a book blog in my on-line travels that had asked if you think your reading preferences change over time and I think they do.  I’m not talking about before the age of twenty-one for myself but I find that my tastes have changed a bit in my twenties and now into my thirties.  I still like to read best sellers but not necessarily the self-promoting blockbusters.  I read this book based on the summary I read above which was taken from Amazon.com.   

If you are interested in a light read to get from one airport to the other on then I will recommend this book to you.  If you are interested in reading something substantial and memorable than I would advise against “Sail.” 

{Rating 1 out of 5}

Booking Through Thursday ~ Clubbing (A Week Late)

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Have you ever been a member of a book club? How did your group choose (to, if you haven’t been, what do you think is the best way to choose) the next book and who would lead discussion?

Do you feel more or less likely to appreciate books if you are obliged to read them for book groups rather than choosing them of your own free will? Does knowing they are going to be read as part of a group affect the reading experience?

I was asked to do a guest post over at BOOKS ON THE BRAIN last month where I did write about this subject.

Yes, I have been a member of a “real life” book club.  I ran a book club here on Okinawa for two years and I called it “Lit & The Island”.  Pretty catchy huh?  Originally it started with just a few of my closest friends and then grew a bit with invitations from other members to their friends.  The group was never larger than ten people at a time but rarely did we have full attendance each month at our meetings/dinners.  With the plethora of restaurants on this island, we met at a new establishment every month.  It was fun while it lasted and we read some very interesting books for the most part.  There were some duds though so those meeting consisted of discussions about things other than the book.  Actually, there were really only a few times that the book of the month was discussed for longer than twenty minutes.  I chalk that up to the fact that some of the members hadn’t seen each other since the last meeting and had a month worth of catching up to do.  I was guilty of this bad habit myself too. 

The way we would choose the clubs books was to have a nomination/voting night every few months.  Living in Okinawa made book buying a little tricky.  The multiple base PX’s and BX (Post Exchange & Base Exchange) don’t have the largest book selection so we had to order everything on-line.  I think some people were able to find the chosen books at the library once in a while but for the most part it was order the book, wait for it to be shipped, wait for the Military mail to get it here from California and then get it from your post office box on base at the post office.  UGGHH!!!  Anyway, we would vote for three to four books at a time to make things easier.  I would always bring the longest book list of nominations.  Each person was then asked to tell the group about the book they wanted people to vote for and why.  After everyone had their turn we would write our top three of four (depending on how many months we were filling) and I would tally the books based on vote counts.  The most votes was the first book, then on down the line.  We read Elizabeth Noble’s “The Reading Group”, Arthur Golden’s “Memoir of a Geisha”, Jeffrey Eugenides’s “Middlesex”, Michael Dorris’s “A Yellow Raft In Blue Water” and many others.  These were my favorites of what we read as a group. 

For the most part, I enjoyed reading the books we assigned ourselves to read for this club.  In the beginning of the clubs existence I would read the book even if I didn’t like it but as time went on and my TBR shelf grew, I was a bit pickier with what I read.  If the book wasn’t grasping me in after about a quarter of the way through I wouldn’t stick with it.  I would have something to contribute to the discussion with hope that others could clue me in to what happened after I put the book down. 

Now I just run this on-line book club which I LOVE!  I have a little more control over the nominations and having made the time frame bi-monthly it makes it easier to read other things too.  When we move back to the States I may look into joining a “real life” book club again but for now, I am more than happy to know that I am reading a book as part of a group of readers on-line.  I don’t regret running and being a part of “Lit & The Island” though.  I believe that everything happens for a reason and it was a lovely experience. 

Let Me Tell You About A HUGE Book Giveaway!!

UPDATE:  This book giveaway is not through this blog site but actually through MAW BOOKS BLOGEveryone who has left comments here is not eligible for this giveaway.  If you just left your wonderful comment to say “Hi” and that you love Stephenie Meyer, THANK YOU!! – Karen @ Planet Books

Maw Books Blog is HOSTING a HUGE giveaway right now.  If you are a Stephenie Meyer fan than this is the contest for you. 

Planet Books Update

Hello Everyone!!  Today has been a busy day at the computer for me.  I’ve been updating and improving the Planet Books site.  If you’ll take a look to your right, you will see “What’s Happening At Planet Books”.  Here I will have updates on what’s coming up at Planet Books, be it giveaways, guest posts, upcoming book club votes or whatever. 

Also I have finally categorized all my posts.  Whew!  It took me a few hours today but everything is now easily accessible under the “Category File” section to the right and down the page.   All the Book Club books we have read are under BOOK CLUB as well as my 33 of 33 Challenge I gave myself this year. 

I hope you’ll take a moment to browse the improvements I have made here and please feel free to share some tips that you may use yourself to organize things at your own blog. 

Wiki Wednesday ~ June 18, 2008

Over at Verbatim, Karen has a great little game for Wednesday’s.  Wiki Wednesday!  Time to learn something!

1. Go to Wikipedia.
2. Click on “Random article” in the left-hand sidebar box.
3. Post it!

Here’s what I got this week:

Laurence Mark Wythe is a British composer, lyricist and writer, principally becoming known for his 2006 musical “Tomorrow Morning” which received a premiere production directed by Nick Winston, produced by Hilary Williams. The production was at the New End Theatre in London and starred Emma Williams, Stephen Ashfield, Alistair Robins and Annette McLaughlin. The original cast album is available on the Dress Circle label. In 2007 “Tomorrow Morning” will be featured at Theatre Building Chicago’s Stages Festival of New Musicals directed by Tom Mullen.

Wythe is emerging as one of the UK’s foremost young writers of new musical theatre. His other shows have been CR7 – Cancer Control Force for Cancer Research (Earl’s Court, NEC, QE2 Centre, SECC and various venues around the UK), A Tragedy of Errors (Cambridge Summer Mussic Festival & Theatre Street Performing Arts, South London), Jack Dagger (Greenwich Theatre Musical Futures workshop, Roll on the Day (Bridewell Theatre workshop).