By Jared Della Rocca, Technology Resources and Outreach Librarian
I've been tasked by the BFP to bring you, my rapt audience, book reviews. I had some reservation about doing ANYTHING for the BFP, since I'm still peeved over Jan's yellow journalism - endorsing Lucky Dragon over China Wok. $9 FOR ALL YOU CAN EAT! I mean, that should've ended things right there. But after being told I wouldn't have to interact with their resident Food Critic, I gave them the rest of my rules:
1) No picture books, aka "Graphic novels." Books should have pictures on the front and back cover. THAT'S IT! Okay, one map is acceptable, but ONLY one. Yeah, I'm talking to you Rand McNally Road Atlas. Your book should be one page long and it should say, "Google Map it."
2) I actually didn't have any other rules. Once I had made clear my disdain for picture books, I was ready to start reviewing.
Spoiler Alert: There may be spoilers in here. Honestly, after reading my thorough reviews, you'll feel like you've read the book, and you can tell people you did and then be like, "Can you believe that ENDING!" and they'll totally believe you read it too, so I'm probably doing you a favor.
On to the reviews:
The Fear Index by Robert Harris: A good thriller that took me about a day to read. Is he being stalked or slowly going insane? Neither, it was a computer program all along. Boom, no need to read the book now.
Watership Down by Richard Adams: The Velveteen Rabbit meets The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, minus a kick-ass lion and scarlet fever. Spoiler: it's a book about rabbits, and they make it to Watership Down like 100 pages into the book. Oh, and despite all the rabbits, not one Elmer Fudd appearance. Seemed like a missed opportunity.
The Poisoner's Handbook by Deborah Blum: Yeah, this is really more of a handbook for CATCHING poisoners. You learn a lot about poisons, yet not one section on how to get someone to drink the coffee you just put poison in. Frankly, I learned more about poisoning someone watching The Princess Bride (develop an immunity to the poison, then put the poison in BOTH cups!).
Psycho by Robert Bloch: Norman Bates' mother was always dead. This would be a great movie; someone call J.J. Abrams and see if he's available.
A Home At the End of the World by Michael Cunningham: I finished this book three weeks and 8 books ago. I can't remember what it was about. Probably wasn't that good. Plus I gave it only two stars, so no reason to try and remember.
Vox by Nicholson Baker: Just mentioning this book makes me blush. It was recommended by a student, so I try and jump on student recommendations, but in doing so I missed the quote on the front cover which said "Erotic..." The book takes place in a phone sex/party hotline. Okay, I think that's enough reviewing of that book.
Ya know what, I'm done here. All of this reviewing is wasting precious time I should be devoting to reading. If you want to know how good a book is---read it. The End.