The Sunday Salon (Mar. 11): Tiny reviews of Death of an Obnoxious Tourist, Penumbra, Kitchen Confidential

The Sunday Salon.com Okay, so here’s the deal: I’m getting a little tired of my usual blogging practices. Normally I write 3-10 reviews a week, depending on how far behind I am. Keeping up with that? Is kind of tiring. Especially since I want to try doing other, non-review posts sometimes. Writing the reviews, though, takes up most of my blogging time and that’s annoying.

What I’m going to try to do instead is sort of like what I did back in November/December when I was trying to read a book a day: I’ll do tiny reviews of the books I’ve read in the previous week for my Salon post. Longer reviews (and therefor separate review posts) will be saved for review books and books that I just have a lot of feelings for. And then hopefully I’ll have more time/energy to write other blog posts! Like, say, more tips for blogger newbies posts. Or reading journal-y posts! Or other exciting stuff!

Basically I guess I just don’t want to be trapped into doing a million review posts a week. Because feeling trapped is not fun, and I want to have fun!

So: books I read this week:

045. Death of an Obnoxious Tourist – Maria Hudgins ★★★
Publication: Five Star/Thomson Gale (June 7, 2006), ebook, 275pp / ISBN 1594144672
Genre: Mystery
Read: March 4-6, 2012
Source: Freebie

For some reason I feel like I should like this book LESS? idk why, maybe because I’ve been burned by cozies in the past. But this one is cute! And the mystery is actually really good! And it stars an older (mid-50’s, I think?) lady who’s going through a divorce but doesn’t obsess about it for the whole book. In fact, the book’s more focused on the mystery than anything else, really, even the romance (which is more like a subplot).

Conclusion: better than most cozies, though still not perfect.

046. Shadows on the Moon – Zoe Marriott ★★★★★
Review to be posted closer to April. (It’s an AWESOME book, though!)

047. Penumbra – Carolyn Haines ★★★★
Publication: Tyrus Books (January 1, 2012), originally published 2006, ebook, 288pp / ISBN 0312351607
Genre: Historical Fiction, Magical Realism, Mystery
Read: March 9, 2012
Source: Freebie

I actually started reading this book to get away from a depressing book I’d been reading right before– bad move. Penumbra? Is depressing in that way that lit fic usually is. On the one hand, I’m kind of annoyed with Penumbra because of the ending (which sucked) and the fact that it uses all the stereotypical bad Southern things to shock its readers (incest-y creeper rapist mountain men, for instance). On the other hand, it’s got some amazing characters (including female ones!) that managed to keep me reading the book even after the fifth description of a brutal rape. Soooo.

Also there is magical realism stuff, which I like, although it wasn’t actually used in any way that moved the plot along, which I didn’t like.

Conclusion: Tough but fascinating read, even though there were some bumps in the plotline.

048. Kitchen Confidential – Anthony Bourdain ★★★★★
Publication: Bloomsbury USA (December 10, 2008), originally published 2000, 321pp / ISBN 158234082X
Genre: Memoir
Read: March 10, 2012
Source: Bought (cheapie!)

Ah, Anthony Bourdain. You’re such an interesting fellow. You get to travel all around the world eating food and seeing amazing things (well, mostly– you DID skip out on seeing the pyramids in Egypt that one time) and it’s obvious you love your job. Plus, you’re a decent writer! Kitchen Confidential was funny and kinda shocking and while the first chapter seemed like it was trying to be in a Hunter S. Thompson instead, overall it was really well written. I liked learning about how you became a chef, how the cooking world’s changed in the time you’ve been in it, and that though you’re a dick at least you admit to being one (and that you apparently try to be less dickish when people call you out on it). I’m definitely going to read your other books, if only to see how much you’ve changed in the 10+ years since this first (non-fiction) one was published.

Conclusion: Doesn’t go TOO in depth on the non-cooking aspects of AB’s life, but the stuff that IS in there is pretty darned good.

Weekly Book Stats

Books reviewed this week:
021. Wanderlove – Kirsten Hubbard ★★★★★ eR
040. What Would Jane Austen Do? – Laurie Brown ★★★½ e

Books acquired this week:
It was Read an Ebook week this past week, which meant LOTS of free and cheap books. Here’s some of the ones I’m most excited about:

7 Comments

  1. 3-10 reviews a week? A, I’m impressed! Can you write my reviews too? 🙂 I really think that’s amazing. This is your blog and you should do whatever makes you happy.

    One question, where is a link to your other blog about cheap e-reads?

    • Anastasia

      lol, about half of them were mini reviews, so I don’t think it’s as impressive as it first seems. 🙂 But writing tons of mini reviews is still tiring!

      That blog went bye-bye, unfortunately. Couldn’t keep up with it, either. 🙁

  2. Lu

    I think this is a great way to do your reviews. I find that I really only want to review books that I have a lot to say about. Why force myself to write a full review of a book that I don’t have many thoughts on? I’ve been doing short reviews in my monthly review posts and that’s working just fine. Don’t burn yourself out on reviews!

    • Anastasia

      Exactly! Plus, sometimes I think I only have a little to say about a book, and then it turns out I wrote 500 words instead. Doing it this way gives me a bit more leeway with my posts, that’s all.

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