Mini Reviews to End 2008

by Kim on January 6, 2009 · 9 comments

Inspired by Care’s Quick Mini-Reviews to Finish 2008, I’m going to just do some short comments on the last few books I feel like reviewing for 2008.  I’m skipping a few books, mostly because I didn’t have strong feelings about them, but this list covers the ones I have something to say about.

Friday Night Lights by Buzz Bissinger

I mentioned this book in Sunday Salon, but didn’t really give it a review.  Friday Night Lights follows a single season of high school football in Odessa Texas.  Bissinger chronicles the team’s successes and failures, and how the fandom surrounding the team influences the town.  I loved the story of this book, but sometimes find Bissinger’s writing style annoying.  He has a tendency to over-write sections, making them extra dramatic when I think the scene is good enough by itself.  Nonetheless, I enjoyed this book a lot and recommend it for people with any interest in sports or sports journalism.

The Story of Sushi by Trevor Corson

I read Corson’s book The Secret Life of Lobsters earlier this year and enjoyed it a lot, so I was excited to read his second book.  The Story of Sushi follows a class of students at an elite sushi-making academy, and also tells the history of how sushi went from a lower-class Japanese dish to an American delicacy.  I liked the lobster book better than this one, but thought they were both good.  It takes a talented writer to make you interested in a topic that you otherwise wouldn’t read about, and I think Corson does that well.


Brisingr by Christopher Paolini

Despite their flaws, I enjoyed Paolini’s first two books, Eragon and Eldest.  Unfortunately, I can’t say that I enjoyed Brisingr that much.  The book was very long, but nothing seemed to happen.  It felt like a filler piece between the last battle in Eldest and the final battle that will happen in the fourth book.  There were some interesting scenes, and I think Paolini’s writing style is getting better, but reading this book felt a little bit like an obligation.  People who are into the series will read it, but honestly I’m not sure you need to in order for the next book to make sense. Fingers crossed than the final book is better!

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Jenners January 6, 2009 at 9:46 pm

Love this post … quick and easy to read but you fit a lot of info in. Thanks

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Amy @ My Friend Amy January 6, 2009 at 10:01 pm

Thanks for the reviews, Kim, I want to read The Story of Sushi. :)

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Jackie (Farm Lane Books) January 7, 2009 at 6:29 am

I tried reading Eragon a few years ago, but never really got into it. There seemed to be too many long words thrown in (to try to make the author sound clever?) I got annoyed with it, so didn’t finish it. Do you think it is worth persevering?

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bkclubcare January 7, 2009 at 11:33 am

I already know about Corson (cuz I love lobsters!) and I have Buzz on my list due to the other book you said was so good, but I’m not sure I’ll get to Eragon any time soon.

Thanks for the linklove. I just realized I actually missed a rev of a book from 08. OH well!

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Joanne January 7, 2009 at 4:49 pm

What a great post! I love the idea of having quickie reviews like this. I think I may start doing this for the books I don’t have much to say about.

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Kim January 7, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Jenners: Sure, glad they were useful.

Amy: You should, it’s a fun book!

Jackie: If the writing in Eragon frustrated you, the rest of the series will probably too. He likes to throw in big words pretty regularly, although the writing does get better as the series progresses. I think the storyline and characters are interesting though.

bkclubcare: I’d recommend Buzz and Corson over Paolini, so good choices!

Joanne: I liked it too, actually. I might have to keep it up to make some of my 2009 goals possible.

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Beth F January 8, 2009 at 8:57 am

Thanks so much again for hosting this! I like your goals — specific and doable.

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Tom C January 9, 2009 at 2:29 am

I hosted my own Wordpress blog on my domain only to have it horribly (and irretrievably) hacked into with a piece of malicious software that tried to redirect everyone who visited me to a porn site. The benefits of using a third-party hosted blog like wordpress.com or typepad (my current platform) is that someone else has to manage security issues for you.

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Care December 15, 2009 at 4:21 pm

ha! I came to your blog looking for Wordy Shipmates and found this instead – you’ll hear why in a sec – but then I saw ME! in the first sentence of this post! eeek. odd experience.
ANYWAY… I just had to tell you that I ran into Borders this afternoon cuz I had a great idea to buy my husband the Tyler Florence Ultimate cookbook. Well, I can’t just buy ONE book or it will feel like a wasted trip, right? sacrilege or something. So, guess what I bought: FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS and WORDY SHIPMATES (buyonegetonhalfoff table) I knew you’d be proud of me. :)

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