Wild Roses

About The Book:
Written by Deb Caletti Published Year 2005
Seventeen-year-old Cassie Morgan lives with a time bomb (a.k.a. her stepfather, Dino Cavalli). To the public, Dino is a world-renowned violin player and composer. To Cassie, he's an erratic, self-centered bully. And he's getting worse: He no longer sleeps, and he grows increasingly paranoid. Before Cassie was angry. Now she is afraid.
Enter Ian Waters: a brilliant young violinist, and Dino's first-ever student. The minute Cassie lays eyes on Ian she knows she's doomed. Cassie thought she understood that love could bring pain, but this union will have consequences she could not have imagined.
In the end, only one thing becomes clear: In the world of insanity, nothing is sacred.


Maybe we consider a piece of work to be genius in part because it goes places we cannot go. Maybe it is not so much that the genius are nuts, but that there is something in the nuts that is genius. That ability to get to not just the seed of emotion, but to the place that exists even before the seed is there. Maybe they live amid the raw materials of feeling before feeling becomes organized; maybe they work with the base elements, like the cosmos in formation. There seems, anyway, an ability to get to truth, the purest emotion, if you can see through the barbed wire of chaos that surrounds it. Maybe that's what we respond to in those works of genius -- our own inability to be that emotionally unbound. An envy for the letting go the tether and seeing what is beyond the frontier, the barrier of self protection. Maybe the genius is only a letting go, in a way that most of us would be too frightened to. But maybe, too, the genius is just some wacky consolation prize for the pain of living out of this world.
I picked this one up without even reading the synopsis because I rarely see any Deb Caletti's book in paperback and this would be the first of her books I'll be reading. At first I thought the plot was abit odd but after a few chapters I started getting into it; I love those little facts about world renowed artists/writers and the twist about Dino's life. Cassie's narration was witty and honest but too jaded for a teenager in my opinion. Maybe because this is not a typical young adult book about boys, highshool or teen insecurities, even the romance was just a fraction on the joys of falling in love for the first time. I'm okay with that I just find the synopsis a little misleading because if Ian played a big part on the changes that happened to Cassie, his character should have been more defined especially in the matter of choosing between his responsibility to his family and what he wants in life. Much of the story is really about Dino and how his antics affects Cassie's life and on top of it Cassie has to deal with her parent's divorce. Cassie's voice is very mature and quite unlikely for a teen.

The Lost Symbol

About The Book:
Written by Dan Brown Series Robert Langdon Published Year 2009
As the story opens, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned unexpectedly to deliver an evening lecture in the U.S. Capitol Building. Within minutes of his arrival, however, the night takes a bizarre turn. A disturbing object--artfully encoded with five symbols--is discovered in the Capitol Building. Langdon recognizes the object as an ancient invitation . . . one meant to usher its recipient into a long-lost world of esoteric wisdom.
When Langdon’s beloved mentor, Peter Solomon--a prominent Mason and philanthropist--is brutally kidnapped, Langdon realizes his only hope of saving Peter is to accept this mystical invitation and follow wherever it leads him. Langdon is instantly plunged into a clandestine world of Masonic secrets, hidden history, and never-before-seen locations--all of which seem to be dragging him toward a single, inconceivable truth.


For someone who loves conspiracy theories which I do, this will be a hit. I don't care much for the writing or quite understand some readers contempt for Brown's writing style, I think it is shared by most of writers in the genre -- ie James Rollins and Steve Berry. It might also be true that I would not have read it with a sense of urgency if not for the author's popularity but I did enjoy reading it. I would have liked it better without the CIA in the backdrop like with the first two books. Mal'akh's character was as delusional but maybe a more sinister villain than the Camerlengo and the Albino. I love reading about the Freemasonry Conspiracies and Noetic Science in the book and I really liked reading the series, Robert Langdon's character is somewhat familiar now that almost everyone I know watched the movie franchise (not me though!) so atleast it gives us something to talk about.

Love You Hate You Miss You

About The Book:
Written by Elizabeth Scott Published Year 2009
Get this, I'm supposed to be starting a journal about "my journey." Please. I can see it now: Dear Diary, As I'm set adrift on this crazy sea called "life" . . . I don't think so.
It's been seventy-five days. Amy's sick of her parents suddenly taking an interest in her.
And she's really sick of people asking her about Julia. Julia's gone now, and she doesn't want to talk about it. They wouldn't get it, anyway. They wouldn't understand what it feels like to have your best friend ripped away from you.
They wouldn't understand what it feels like to know it's your fault.
Amy's shrink thinks it would help to start a diary. Instead, Amy starts writing letters to Julia.
But as she writes letter after letter, she begins to realize that the past wasn't as perfect as she thought it was - and the present deserves a chance too. Wherever I go, I'll always see you. You'll always be with me. And there's no happy ending coming here, no way a story that started on a night that's burned into my heart will end the way I wish it could. You're really gone, no last words, and no matter how many letters I write to you, you're never going to reply. You're never going to say goodbye. So I will. Goodbye Julia. Thank you for being my friend. Thank you for being you.
I'm a fan of Elizabeth Scott, I think it's ingenious of her being able to write books in different tones. I've read Perfect You and Stealing Heaven, both on her lighter side of her writing. I've been stalling in reading Living Dead Girl because I think it would be depressing?... scary to read? which is the same with books like Before I Die and The Lovely Bones. Generally I stay away from books with darker themes that of grief, loss, anger and guilt.
Everyone knows how hard it is to lose someone but you can never truly understand unless you're the one that's left behind, that's how Amy feels she doesn't need people to symphatize or console her. She's very angry and it's a gradual process for her to let go and learn to leave with the choices she's made. Although I'm not a fan of the theme I'm glad I've read this, I wouldn't want to miss out on Scotts books.

Undercover

About The Book:
Written by Beth Kephart Published Year 2007
Like a modern-day Cyrano de Bergerac, Elisa ghostwrites love notes for the boys in her school. But when Elisa falls for Theo Moses, things change fast. Theo asks for verses to court the lovely Lila—a girl known for her beauty, her popularity, and a cutting ability to remind Elisa that she has none of these. At home, Elisa's father, the one person she feels understands her, has left on an extended business trip. As the days grow shorter, Elisa worries that the increasingly urgent letters she sends her father won't bring him home. Like the undercover agent she feels she has become, Elisa retreats to a pond in the woods, where her talent for ice-skating gives her the confidence to come out from under cover and take center stage. But when Lila becomes jealous of Theo's friendship with Elisa, her revenge nearly destroys Elisa's ice-skating dreams and her plan to reunite her family.
Fox-Trot
By the stream the fox and she-fox stood Nose to nose beneath the stars Dancing the music of the woods.
The deer rapped a beat with their hooves, The ravens sang from raven hearts As by the stream the fox and she-fox stood.
The great owl called as a great owl would, The squirrels all shimmeid in the dark, Dancing the music of the woods.
Then from a north a fierce wind blew And broke the starry dance apart By the stream where the fox and the she-fox
stood. The ravens flew as the ravens would, Deer ran off, squirrels scuttled far away from the music of the woods.
The stars blinked out, also the moon. The air went silent, cold, and hard By the stream where the fox and the
she-fox stood Dancing the music of the woods.

I don't usually re-read books but I'm making Undercover an exception. There are books that you read simply because of the story and some like this one you just fell in love with because of the beautiful writing and the author's mastery of words. It's best not to over think when reading Undercover just because it's an National Book Award Nominee, take it as it is and enjoy it. I love how personal it felt, being privy to Elisa's thoughts and her reflections to changes around her is truly wonderful. Putting together the Cyrano angle, her knack for poetry, family issues and her newly discovered love for ice skating seemed tedious but it worked, I guess it happens? The ending leaves alot of possibilities, I liked it that Kephart didn't try hard to tie the loose ends it's mush better this way, leaving something for the readers to ponder on. I just noticed I tend to love books with simple realistic stories which usually are books for children, EL Konigsburg's The Outcasts of 19 Schuyler Place comes into mind.