Thursday, May 10


This week when I began my blog, I thought it was going to be a collection of rambling thoughts, but then all my thoughts started to be about books I've read recently. So, what you're going to get is quasi-book review.

I started writing back in the eighties when being self-published was called Vanity publishing. Flash forward several decades and it's now called 'indie-publishing'. And to be honest, some of those old prejudices still linger in the back of my mind when it comes to indie-publishing. 

So, imagine my surprise when I started reading On the Island by Tracey Garvis Graves. 

My sister bought for her Kindle, read it in a day or so and then loaned it to me. I read it in a day and when I was finished, I wanted to start reading it again, so I bought my own copy. At $2.99 on Amazon, it's definitely a steal.

The book is about Anna, a teacher flying to an island with her sixteen-year-old student, T.J. to meet up with his parents. She's to be his summer tutor to make up for the time he lost when he was fighting cancer. Their plane goes down and they are stranded for over four years on this little island with nothing but fish, coconuts, and breadfruit to survive on. 

I honestly can't say enough good things about this book. It is such a great read. Not only did my sister and I enjoy it. My 25yo daughter started reading it at 10:30 one night and finished at 1:30 in the morning--yeah, she's an amazing reader but it was a work night. My mom read it on a rainy afternoon and my non-reading sister read it in two days. So, from the Wilkinson/Senechals--five enthusiastic thumbs up.

A book that I'm not understanding the fuss over is, Shades of Grey by E.L.James. I bought it for my Kindle after a Today show spotlight. I read 2/3 of it a few weeks ago and haven't felt a compulsion to go back and keep reading. 

While the story is engaging, I was bothered from the get-go by the author's lack of research. You see, the book begins in my hometown of Vancouver, WA.
The heroine, Anna, is a student at WSU-Vancouver Campus along with her super-rich roommate from Seattle, who's studying Journalism and is editor of the school paper.

On page two, there's this passage. "The roads are clear as I set off from Vancouver, WA toward Portland and the I-5."

Here's the thing. I-5 runs through Vancouver and we don't head South to Portland to get North to Seattle. There are at least six onramps to I-5 as it passes through Vancouver. And trust me, we use them all. See, around here, freeways are the only way to travel.

This was a simple thing really. A simple thing a little reseach could have caught. Or a look at a map of the area. If you're going to set your book in an area that you're unfamiliar with, talk to someone from there (Hi Liz!). Or better yet, fictionalize a town in the area. 

Oh, I'm missing the point. The book is sexy! Titilating! 

Yeah, I don't get that either. I've never understood the appeal of hand-cuffs, dominance, and spankings. It's an okay enough romance--I like the characters Ana and Christian. I'm just not in love with them.

I'm running out of time--I have to leave for work in 20 minutes so I'm going to give another enthusiastic thumbs up to Sophie Kinsella's I've Got Your Number.

Poppy is spunky and adorable--think Bridget Jones before she got a jaded. And Sam = major swoon.

Such a great story! Again, when I finished this, I wanted to turn around and begin again. Oh, and there's one scene that had me rolling on the couch with laughter. 


  1. Thanks for the reviews, Margie! I'm a Sophie fan, but haven't had the chance to read this one. Will add to the queue...and the Island book sounds fab - definitely going to check that out.

    I haven't read 50..haven't felt the need. Think I will probably pass on this one.

    1. On The Island is fab! She's been on Kindle's top 20 for the past couple of weeks, along with the Fifty shades books and The Hunger Games. That's kind of amazing.

  2. Oh, that first book sounds do the teach and her student become lovers?

    Fifty Shades of Grey--bleck. I haven't read it, and I'm not going to. Spanking and crap, not for me.

    Thanks for the reviews.

    1. TOTAL SPOILER ALERT: Yes, D'Ann, they become lovers. And it's so believable and natural the way it happens.

  3. I agree with D'Ann--the first one sounds great. Sophie Kinsella is one of those voices that I think is great, and...I can never get into. That's so weird, but it happens with all of us.

    Good post.

    1. You know it's funny, Liz, because I never could get into her Shopaholic series because I just don't understand the mind-set. But, her other books I love. And this was by far, my favorite.

    2. Aha, those are the only ones I've read, and I read two of them and said...well, no more. But I will try I've Got Your Number.

  4. Not intending to read 50 Shades either. Did you know it started out as Twilight fan fiction?

    1. I did know that. I've read it in a couple of different places. I'm so glad that I'm not the only one that's not into the whole bondage/submissive thing.

  5. For those of you with E-readers, Murder One by Robert Dugoni is on sale for $1.99. Now, I haven't read it yet, but have been fortunate enough to take workshops from Mr. Dugoni for the last two years at the Willamette Writer's Conference. He's funny, charming, and pretty damn easy on the eyes.

    And since getting to hear him speak, I've always wanted to try reading him, so for 1.99 what do I have to lose?