mary's book basket ~ so many good books!

In the last six weeks I have done some serious reading. I have been trying to kick the TV habit which can be challenging at times. So, I thought I would share a few titles that I enjoyed. If you have read any of them, let me know what you thought.

This sweet mother/daughter tale was very touching. I loved Georgia's tenacity and strong spirit. The imperfections and struggles of each of the woman made them more real to me and the ending even more poignant. 
score B+

Really enjoyed this book even more than the movie. Percy is my kind of hero, flawed but honorable. He would give his life for his friends and even though he makes mistakes he owns them. The pacing is fantastic and the action never wanes. I love it when the underdog wins.
score A

The star of the second "Percy Jackson" installment is Dyson, a cyclops and Percy's half brother. He is so funny, a great comic relief for a more serious story line. The pacing is just as good as the first book and the story moves with some wonderful byplay between the brothers. And who doesn't love Grover the saytr as Percy's best friend? Such a fantastic character. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series. Gotta know what happens next. 
score A+

I LOVE Debbie Macomber. She weaves a wonderful story every single time. "The Shop on Blossom Street" is no different. The heroine makes a huge leap of faith by opening a yarn shop. She yearns to live instead of waiting to die. Her shop draws some very interesting  female clients, who all carry some serious baggage. They learn so much about themselves over the course of the book all while learning to knit. Debbie reveals their true characters slowly with such grace. Great book with an inspirational message: never give up on love. It's what life is all about.
score B++

This book was a revelation. Set in the Jim Crowe south, the story follows the lives of two African American maids and one of their white employers. While writing a book in secret about the maids relationships with their employees, Miss Skeeter's heart begins to change as she sees the inequality of the situation. Change is coming and she begins a quiet revolution. Each chapter is written in the first person which allows the reader to steep themselves in that characters life. The writing is top notch with a difficult subject. Absolutely LOVED this book. It will be on my "keeper" shelf.
score A+++

Another fantastic book. What made this one an even more enjoyable experience for me was that I listened to it on CD. The actors were a delight to listen to as they read the letters with beautiful English accents. The language of the day is wonderful to listen to.  The description of the English Channel island made me want to hop on a plane and visit. A wonderful glimpse at WWII England.
score A

This is Grisham's first attempt at YA and I have to say it was a success at least for me. Theo reminds me of Encyclopedia Brown who has been a long time literary favorite. The plot was much more serious but the courtroom drama and byplay between Theo and the judge were so well written. I finished this book in one weekend. A page turner hearkening back to Grisham's "A Time to Kill" days.
score B+

I am a David Baldacci fan. Ever since I read his debut novel "Absolute Power" I have stood in line for each of his books. I even heard him speak three years ago. He is such a fantastic writer. He is known for his pacing, complicated plots us and a large canvas of secondary characters. I enjoyed this novel. The relationship between the hero and heroine builds in conflict and intensity throughout the story. The plot lives up to a Baldacci suspense novel with so many twists and turns there were times I had to go back and reread so I didn't miss anything.
score B

Ok, you know I love Baldacci right. Well this is the first book of his I did not like. Why? Because this isn't a Baldacci novel. This is a Vince Flynn or Brad Thor knock off. I don't get it. David has a solid formula with some fantastic mystery/political thriller/suspense plots. Why go to the place of spies and torture? It was a tough read. Really tough. I liked the hero but couldn't stomach the tale. Sorry David. I still love you and can't wait for your next book in August. 
score D

Happy Reading!