Secondhand World (mini-review)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Isadora Myung Hee Sohn—Isa—has just spent ninety-five days in a pediatric burn unit in Albany, New York, recovering from the fire that burned her house and killed her parents. Moving back in time, Secondhand World casts a devastating spell, revealing the circumstances that led to the fire.

Growing up the daughter of Korean-born parents, Isa is bullied by American classmates and barely noticed at home. Seeking the company of another outsider, Isa falls in love with Hero, an albino boy. But what starts out as a small teenage rebellion sets in motion a series of events and revelations Isa never could have foreseen.

This was a very fast read. It was a coming of age novel about a girl who grows up the daughter of Korean parents living in the states, and all the cultural issues associated with it. She falls in love with an albino boy, likely due to the fact that they are both different. The story doesn't have so much to do with the fire but the life that was lived up until that point. It was very interesting and can be read in almost a single sitting. Very good book!

Project Jennifer (mini-review)

What's in a name?Joan Benjamin, a plain and uptight secretary on Long Island, New York, is suffering an identity crisis brought on by a very bad week. Her ex-fianc‚ just married someone else; she's lost her cushy overpaid job; and she's been kicked out of her apartment. All because of women named Jennifer! So when Joan learns that her parents almost named her Jennifer, she decides to transform herself into the Jennifer she might have been.
It's either Everything.Armed with all the pop psychology she can get her hands on-and with the help of a dear friend who can recite Cosmo-style stats by heart-Joan sets out to cultivate her inner Jennifer: a sexy, successful belle-of-the-ball who's completely in charge of her professional and private lives.
OR NOTHING AT ALL.But "Project Jennifer" is not a rousing success right out of the gate-apparently, even Jennifers can have bad dates and wardrobe malfunctions-but soon Joan begins to feel transformed by her new self. In fact, her Jennifer persona might end up teaching her a few unexpected lessons about life: like how to say "yes" to things you want and "no" to things you don't, and that just being yourself is enough. Even if that self is named Joan.
A clever, fun new twist on a story of a modern woman grappling with the very nature of who she is and why, Project Jennifer explores whether having the right name can really take you places.

I don't want to be cliche and repeat what all the other reviewers are saying, but it definitely was a good chick-lit that had a great message about being yourself. The character was someone everyone could relate to and there were lots of LOL moments for me. In the beginning the author sort of repeated a couple tid bits or events (about Jennifer) and I was worried it was going to be repetetive. But it ended up coming together very well. This was a cute chick lit!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

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Review Policy

Friday, August 1, 2008

I would love to accept requests for reviews. While I can only do a limited number at a time, it will be my responsibility to not accept those I cannot complete. Therefore, the books that are sent to me for review will be posted as soon as possible, approximately 2-3 weeks from the time the book is received at the latest.
I am currently a little backlogged so reviews will take a little longer. I will, however, work on this and get all reviews posted. (9/19/09)

In addition to being posted here, reviews will be posted and/or discussed on paperbackswap, goodreads, librarything, book, amazon, and However, there might be a slight delay in when I post on these other sites, as my first goal is to post it here. My favorite genres are contemporary fiction and mystery/thriller, but I also read various books from other genres.

One last thing -- I am honest in my reviews. While I try to be nice in what I say, I will say what I truly feel since this is my blog and my opinions.

Thank you!