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52 Books 52 Weeks

Everything Happens for a Reason (Or Does It?)

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 04.05.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

What do David and Goliath and The Theory of Opposites have in common? Well, not to get too deep or anything, but I think both books make the point that we shouldn't just accept the things people say just because they say them often.

2 Books Down, 50 To Go

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 03.23.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Who knew that the major downside of reading 52 bestsellers in 52 weeks would be the massive backlog in my to-read pile? But so it's proved to be.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 47-48: A Little History, a Little Future

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 01.31.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

For week 47 of 52 books in 52 weeks I read Bill Bryson's One Summer: America, 1927. And for week 48 I read Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card.

I Know What Books You Should Be Asking for This Christmas/Hanukkah etc.

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 01.23.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

I've also read a lot of good books, and a couple of superior ones. And so, here are my top 10 books I'd be asking for this holiday season (or buying for myself) if I hadn't already read them.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 46: Identical?

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 01.25.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Identical follows the story of two, wait for it, identical twin brothers. One is a successful politician. The other's a convict, serving time for having killed his girlfriend.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 45: It's a Mad, Mad, Mad World

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 01.23.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

You see, despite the kids and responsibilities, not much has changed in Bridget's world. Well, okay, some things have changed. There's Twitter now, and Bridget's often hilarious foray into that social media platform is vintage Fielding.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 44: The Circle Closes

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 01.23.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

The Circle, Eggers' first foray into dystopia, is set in a near future where the world doesn't look that much different than now. Eggers does a great job here of taking our current reality and stepping it up a notch.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 41: Telegraphed

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 01.23.2014 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

But then you come to part III, which is one sentence that goes on for 12 pages (no, that is not a typo). I'm not sure what Chabon was trying to accomplish with this non-sentence. But having been forewarned, I simply skipped over it.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Weeks 39-40: The Computer Ate My Homework

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 12.07.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

While Looking for Alaska may not be as amazing as The Fault in Our Stars, it's still awesome and you should read it.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 38: Making a Racket

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 11.23.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

The Racketeer: a federal judge is found dead (only the fifth such death in the history of the U.S.) and it's a real puzzle. That is until federal racketeering inmate, Malcolm Bannister, comes forward.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 37: Let the Light In

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 11.16.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

How the Light Gets In is the 9th book in the "Gamache" series of books: it's detective fiction with two recurring sets of characters, Inspector Gamache, an investigator in the provinces provincial police force, and the residents of Three Pines.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 34: Behind Bars

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 10.25.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Author Piper Kerman conveys both the sense of disconnection, depression, fear and horror that must overcome anyone who has to go to prison, even if that person is a lot tougher than a thirty-five year old woman who had long since put her brief criminal past behind her.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 33: The Ugly Cry -- Part Two

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 10.18.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

I very much enjoyed Me Before You, even though it made me cry in public. Which bring us to week 34, where we're reading our first non-fiction piece (which is being fictionalized on Netflix) Orange Is the New Black by Piper Kerman.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 32: Famous Last Words

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 10.12.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Billed as this summer's Gone Girl, The Silent Wife tells the story of a couple who has been together for twenty years -- but never married -- and the way each of them deals with the revelation of his infidelity.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 29B: Joyland

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 09.25.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Joyland is the story of Devin Jones, who finds summer work in a carnival that has a gory and mysterious past (a young woman was murdered on one of the rides several years before, and her ghost is said to haunt it.)

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 28: The Science of Sisters

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 09.14.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Sisterland is the story of two sisters, identical twins. Both twins are afflicted/gifted (depending on which sister you're talking to) with a form of ESP.

52 Books in 52 Weeks, Week 26: The Halfway Mark

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 09.06.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Twenty-six weeks ago I set myself a task: I would read a New York Times Bestseller a week and blog about it in the hopes of re-connecting myself to popular book culture and (hopefully) read some great books. It hasn't quite worked out as I planned.

52 Books, 52 Weeks, Week 23: The Wednesday Sisters

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 08.09.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

For week 23 of 52 books in 52 weeks I read The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton, a bestseller that was originally released in 2009, which tells the story of five women who meet in the sixties and form a writing club and, eventually, deep ties of friendship.

52 books, 52 weeks, Week 22: A Red Moon Rising

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 08.03.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

The book is a re-imagination of the werewolf myth, where werewolves -- called lycans here -- live among us but are subject to scrutiny, controls and suspicion. The story is told from multiple points of view, both lycan and regular-human.

52 Books, 52 Weeks, Week 20: Divergent?

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 07.20.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

've always believed that a quick read is a sign of a book that is well-paced, plot driven and engaging. And so Divergent proved to be.

52 books, 52 weeks, Week 18: Beached

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 07.04.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Whiskey Beach is about Eli Landon, a lawyer turned writer (hey, like me!), whose almost-ex-wife was murdered a year ago (okay, not like me).

52 books, 52 weeks, Week 17: Riding the Orphan Train

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 06.27.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

What a lovely book. Christina Baker Kline does an impressive job of capturing the voice of not one, but two, very different children.

52 Books, 52 Weeks, Week 16: A River to Come Back To

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 06.22.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Harrison's book is proof of something that's becoming more and more evident: that quality books can succeed solely through reader -- rather than traditional publisher -- support, these days.

52 Books, 52 Weeks, Week 15: A Roaring Zelda

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 06.15.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

Zelda and Fitzgerald meet at a country club dance in her hometown in Alabama 1918 when she's just seventeen years old. He's a young army officer full of ambition to become a famous writer, and she's a restless and slightly spoiled girl with an overwhelming sense of fun.

52 Books, 52 Weeks, Week 14: Six Long Years

Catherine McKenzie | Posted 06.06.2013 | Books
Catherine McKenzie

I had never read, or even heard of, Harlan Coben before, and this despite the fact that he's sold more than 50 million books worldwide. My bad.