Friday, August 31, 2012

Off the Book Shelf

I've got three new books to share and each of them is so different from the next.

Stolen Innocence by Elissa Wall
This is the true story of Elissa growing up as part of the FLDS, becoming a teenage bride and breaking free from this demented world.  I have always been interested in the FLDS lifestyle, so I really enjoyed reading Elissa's story.  My heart breaks though, for the number of girls that I know are still being raised in this life and made to marry men at very, very young ages.

In this courageous memoir, Elissa Wall, the star witness against polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs, tells her inspirational story of how she emerged from the confines of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) and helped bring one of America's most notorious criminals to justice.
Detailing how Jeffs's influence over the church twisted its already rigid beliefs in dangerous new directions, Wall portrays the inescapable mind-set which forced her to wed her first cousin at age fourteen, pressured her to follow Jeffs's directives, and, once she married, encouraged her to submit to her husband in "mind, body, and soul." For over three years she suffered at the hands of her husband, until one snowy night when a chance encounter with a stranger set in motion a friendship that eventually gave her the strength to break free of the church and come forward against Jeffs, so that girls still inside might be spared her cruel fate.

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
This book is a true work of art.  Ransom Riggs found a number of unique (and sometimes creepy) vintage photos...yep, real photos...and he built an amazing imaginative photo around them.  I really hope there is a sequel book, cause I am dying to read more and see more of these amazing photos.

A mysterious island.
An abandoned orphanage.
A strange collection of very curious photographs.
It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

Peony in Love by Lisa See
Lisa See is one of my favorite authors.  She writes such amazing stories that transport you back to old world China.  Her imagery is brilliant.  She did not disappoint with Peony in Love, but this one is not like her others.  Read it to find out how she intertwines that spirit world with the living.

For young Peony, betrothed to a suitor she has never met, these lyrics from The Peony Pavilion mirror her own longings. In the garden of the Chen Family Villa, amid the scent of ginger, green tea, and jasmine, a small theatrical troupe is performing scenes from this epic opera, a live spectacle few females have ever seen. Like the heroine in the drama, Peony is the cloistered daughter of a wealthy family, trapped like a good-luck cricket in a bamboo-and-lacquer cage. Though raised to be obedient, Peony has dreams of her own.
Peony’s mother is against her daughter’s attending the production: “Unmarried girls should not be seen in public.” But Peony’s father assures his wife that proprieties will be maintained, and that the women will watch the opera from behind a screen. Yet through its cracks, Peony catches sight of an elegant, handsome man with hair as black as a cave–and is immediately overcome with emotion.
So begins Peony’s unforgettable journey of love and destiny, desire and sorrow–as Lisa See’s haunting new novel, based on actual historical events, takes readers back to seventeenth-century China, after the Manchus seize power and the Ming dynasty is crushed.

Each of these books is amazing and I loved each one of them.  I hope you'll read them and let me know what you think.

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I am married to my best friend and am the mom of two wonderful kids. I have had my ups and downs in regards to health, happiness and weight loss. This blog will tell you about all of those ups and downs and my opinion on the randomness that we call life.


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