Spring Break Books

2010 March 31

Two NOT book reviews.

One I loved. The other kept making fun of me. Kind of like the loud person at a party who keeps making fun of something… only it’s you and your beliefs they are making fun of. Not so fun.

While on vacation I zoomed through a couple books. First: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, HIGHLY recommend, but there are adult situations (just so you’ll know). It’s totally gritty and I was surprised how much I was pulled in to the world of the traveling train circus. I’m all over finding and reading the author’s earlier book, Riding Lessons.

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And both my husband and I read Up In The Air by Walter Kirn.
We read it cuz we missed the movie and basically it seemed like it was my husband’s whole life last year. So many trips, he was getting to know the flight attendants and had been boosted into the ‘elite’ level for the hotel chain of choice. (This means they give him a bottled water when he stays with them now. Cool huh?)

I did finish Up In The Air. But it totally dragged for most of the book, and then the ending was completely weird. I haven’t seen the movie yet… it’s out on video and we are trying to decide whether to see it or not. So tell me.. is the movie better than the book? It has to be totally different, the book was written before 2001 and it doesn’t make sense in many parts due to all the post 9/11 security now.

I have one question for any who have read the book AND seen the movie?
What the heck is with all the Anti-Mormon stuff in the book?
Is it overt in the movie as well?

I can take a jab or two, even inaccurate comparisons to current non-Mormon sects practicing polygamy. Heck I belt out the line in the broadway play Chicago : “One of those Mormons!” But this was pretty much the whole book. This guy is like the Dan Brown of anti-Mormon genre. And Hello? The book is about a wacky air traveler joining the ranks of the million skymiles club. How exactly does the whole bring up Mormons 14 times relate??

I had all these plans a while back to write real book reviews. I love books, I really do. And here I am, happy to write. But…sheesh writing a  book review is hard work? You have to worry about giving away the plot. Or the ending! Plus how much do you share about the characters and should you point out who the bad guy turns out to be?

And ratings? I tend to read a lot of books, should I only tell you about the G-rated ones? Will you think less of me if I tell you the book has adult language? Water for Elephants has a whole scene where a woman does a strip tease act and um… she is WELL endowed and talented in a circus freak show kind of way. Just how does one explain what that gives to the book? Maybe you won’t read it if I share too much, eh? Or if I do it badly.

Let’s just leave it at…

I give Water For Elephants 4.5 stars out of 5. Go READ it already.

And… Up In The Air? 2 stars.
Didn’t love it, but I’d be happy to hear your thoughts on it?
And the husband liked it more than I did, so maybe it’s a guy thing?

Where did I read these books…? Day and Night… in paradise.

Hawaii Ko OlinaMarriott’s Ko’Olina as viewed from my ‘Lanai’. Pure heaven.

UPDATE**

Totally enjoyed the movie ‘Up In The Air’. Except for a guy who travels a lot for his job, there was very little similarities to the book. And I read that the author was quite miffed that the movie credits left him out or something..??

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5 Responses
  1. March 31, 2010

    I have not read Up In the Air, but I did see the movie. First, I really liked it. Very sweet and cute. Second, there was NOTHING about Mormons in it at all, so that’s really weird.

  2. March 31, 2010

    Well that’s good to know!? Sheesh… I swear even the last sentence in the book..

    He’s all.. I’m moving to Idaho.. I’ll be Mormon by then with lots of wives. (he’s been making fun of Mormons the whole way through so this is like the ultimate dig.. his world is blowing up so might as well move to Idaho…. )

    I was going to rent it this weekend.. now I will.. THANKS!

  3. April 1, 2010

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  4. Melissa Ann permalink
    April 1, 2010

    Hey there,

    I actually really really liked the movie. It was different, unique. Slow, but not too slow. Kinda dark, but not too much (not depressing). Just different from other movies, which I enjoyed. And it stuck with me – the characters, the unfolding… I would recommend it! And like your first commenter – I have to say that there was NOTHING about mormons/lds/fringe polygamists in the movie… It was weird to even read that, because I can’t imagine how they would have put that into the movie… strange. let us know if you like it!

    I do have a tv/movie/media question to ask one of my lds-insider-friends :). What’s the general opinion of Big Love? Because I love it – but I don’t connect it with mormons at all really. They’re suburban fringe-polygamists… LDS is the SLC background, but that’s about it. I assume that most mormons don’t like it because too many viewers confuse these people with real mormons? But since I don’t do that, I have to say that it is the best polygamous-soap-opera I’ve ever watched! I’m hooked. Don’t hate me.

    xo, Melissa

  5. April 4, 2010

    I have picked up Water for Elephants a dozen times. Maybe next time I’ll give it a go. I think I am one of the only people that thought Up in the Air was kind of boring (the movie) so I know I won’t be reading the book. 🙂 I am currently reading The Time Travelers Wife. It is good, then it drags. It has me curious enough to want to see how it ends.

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