Monday, August 24, 2009

The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis

Well, I finally finished them all! I read the last pages of "The Last Battle" this morning. Although I can see all the Christian references in the story, I was disappointed that there wasn't a bigger ending. This is my least favorite of the Narnia Chronicles. There is deception and treachery and King Tirian & company are LOSING! Yes, I see the similarities to reality - but I don't read a fantasy to be reminded of reality. And, in the end, they are all dead! Peter, Lucy, Edmund, Eustace and Jill and the Pevensies' parents are all dead! Yes, they are together in a beautiful place - Heaven, or the new Narnia - but they will never get back to England again. And, what about Susan? Just because she chose to grow up and forget about the stories of Narnia, she is separated from her family forever? I don't know. It just seemed as though King Tirian, Eustace and Jill and the others were going around in circles, then they went through the stable door, died and ended up in Heaven. The sun went out in Narnia, it got covered in water and ice and High King Peter closed the door on it. If the ending of the story, as beautifully described as it was, was meant to make me feel peaceful, it didn't. I believe in Jesus and I know that we will all be together with Him and our loved ones someday, but I guess I thought the theological hands were laid rather heavily on this book. Suffice it to say I didn't like it. It just didn't seem a worthy ending to a great series of books. Just my opinion.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

3 Willows by Ann Brashares

3 Willows is the story of three girls who are about to attend the same high school where the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants took place. The "Sisters" are mentioned, but they don't have a major role in this story. Jo, Polly and Ama met in third grade and by the end of the 8th grade, they think they are starting to drift apart. They each have different experiences this summer: Ama gets a grant to go to a wilderness adventure camp (much to her chagrin), Jo is spending her summer at the beach with her mother who is having a trail separation from her dad, and Polly discovers her grandmother, who she has never met, was once a model so she tries to make herself over into one, too. The adventures the girls have are very believable. As you read, you get very involved in their lives and the book flies by. Some reviewers say the book is for grades 6 - 10, but I really enjoyed it.

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Shack by Wm. Paul Young

This book presented a very different vision of the Holy Trinity. The personifications made each of them easier to imagine having a relationship with...the reason they appeared that way to Mack. The story held my interest through the different "workshops" Mack experienced. Also, wondering how the issue of Missy's death would be handled kept me reading as well. I still enjoy my Church family and the services we share there, but I understand what they were trying to get across with the importance of relationships, especially with God. I would recommend this selection. It makes you think.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis

Even though the Narnia Reading Challenge at Reading to Know is over, I'm completing the Chronicles of Narnia collection. I finished "The Silver Chair" today. I didn't like it as much as "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader," but I did like it. I especially liked the last part of the book after they released the Prince from his enchantment. Oops! I guess that's a spoiler if you haven't read the book. I didn't like when they had to crawl around in Underland...I don't think I was supposed to like it, it was creepy. Anyway, I'm so happy to have finished another of the Narnia books! I don't know why I never read them when I was young - and yes, they were published then - I'm not that old. I see they are filming Dawn Treader and it looks exciting. Just seeing the pictures makes me feel that I'm in those other worlds. Can't wait for the movie! I've put "The Last Battle" on my TBR list. I have to read a couple of other books first, but I'll get to it soon.

Have a great day!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Almost Heaven by Judith McNaught

This novel by Judith McNaught is classic romance. It has strong characters and lots of plot twists. Elizabeth Cameron is a strong, smart young woman trying to avoid being "matched" by her uncle who is also her guardian. She runs her home, Havenhurst, efficiently and is known for her bargaining with merchants. Unfortunately, she has had to pay off debts incurred by her deceased father and her missing brother. To do this, she has sold off valuable artifacts and furnishings from her home. She meets Ian Thornton, a wealthy but untitled man, at a friend's country weekend party. They have a romantic episode, but misunderstandings ensue, rumors are spread, and they are separated. Ian leaves to attend to his many business ventures, but Elizabeth is treated badly. Of course, she deals with it, but all her offers for marriage are withdrawn. After a year, her uncle wants to get her married for financial reasons and sends letters to all the men who were interested in her previously. Only 3 return invitations for Elizabeth to come visit to see if they will suit. Ian is one of those men; however his invitation was sent by mistake. Elizabeth convinces the first two men they won't suit, but then she gets "stuck" at Ian's cottage in Scotland. One thing leads to another, but I don't want to ruin the reading for you. Suffice it to say that there is a lot of emotion and romance. The supporting characters are great, too. I really liked this book and didn't want to put it down. It was very entertaining.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Graphic Works!

My daughter is amazing! She fixed my award so that it works. Isn't it cute?

It made my day! Hope yours was good, too.