Into the Wild (Jon Krakauer)

2 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:

It’s possible that I just wasn’t in the mood for a fiction/non-fiction, man-against-wilderness read, and for that, I apologize. I was helping a student with this assignment, and thus, had to read it. I found the book… unbearably frustrating. It delves deeply (almost too deeply) into the teenage angst-y feelings and emotions of McCandless. We have interviews from his father, his mother, his friends, and it just feels… too much. For a book that’s about a wilderness adventure, we spend remarkably little time hearing about those final days, and the pages and pages of details describing his unhappiness, his desire to be bigger and better and leave behind the shackles of society, all felt like kind of cliched pre-pubescent ramblings (from both the author and the protagonist). There are bits of writing that are quite well done, even beautiful, but they’re buried until needless trivia and overly-long descriptions.

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Hello World! We’re Changing Things Around Here…

Hello World!

We’ve gone through some changes here at booknosh, and will be changing a few things moving forward.

Moving forward, we’re only going to have one regular poster, Aidyra, though some of our other past reviewers will probably still post occasional guest posts!

As such, we’re going to change our schedule and focus a little:

1. We’re going to aim for one review or some kind of positing once a week.

2. We’re going to gear more and more toward lists, as they’re more fun :) essays, and an interview now and again.

3. We are also, officially accepting requests from new authors again. However, our genres are very limited: literary fiction (self-published or through a traditional house), historical romance, children’s, middle grade and young adult. Read our updated about section for more details.

OK, that’s all for now :) Thanks for reading!

Barnyard Dance! (Sandra Boynton)

Not Recommended, Not Repeatable

Sandra Boynton has a distinctive style in terms of artwork and the way she tells a story — usually I’m a fan (for example, But Not the Hippopotamus). Here though, I almost think you would have to be a fan of square dancing for you to enjoy this book (and then, I think it’s a home run, or whatever the square dancing equivalent of a home run). The animals are dancing, and there’s her usual cow (who now plays a fiddle) and pigs (who twirl), but the text just doesn’t seem as engaging or even as lively as I usually expect… so this was a real miss for us.

Goodnight, I Love You (Caroline Jayne Church)

Not Recommended, Repeatable 

Similar to I Love You Through and Through, this book has great, simplistic illustrations that really hold your toddler’s attention (there’s just something about them that speaks to them!) This book, however, though it’s a simple bedtime routine, just isn’t as fun/engaging as other books where Church has been the illustrator and not the writer (odd thing to say, I know, considering some of these books have fewer than 100 words, but still). It’s not bad, but there are better versions of the going-to-bed-story.

Turkey Bowl (Phil Bildner)

Recommended, Not Repeatable 

It’s a cute Thanksgiving/family tradition story, where a young boy and his friends watch, year after year, as his family plays touch football (which gets clever name changes every year depending on the conditions: Mud Bowl, Ice Bowl, etc). They cheer everyone on, but really, they dream of the day when they’ll finally be big enough to play. The year finally arrives, he dresses and prepares… and then finds out that the roads have been snowed in, and it looks like he might miss his opportunity. It was a cute story, well-drawn in a way that looks almost portrait/picture like, but it’s not really something I think I’d want to read over and over again.