Thursday, April 28, 2011

Home to Woefield

Home to Woefield
by Susan Juby

This is such a fun read! Prudence leaves her life in New York City when she inherits a rundown farm located on an island off the coast of Canada. She befriends a group of quirky, endearing characters, and together they must learn to work together to make the farm a success. The group's misadventures are humorous indeed. It takes a lot to make me laugh out loud while reading, but this book had me chuckling all the way through.

This is a quick, fun read - take it on vacation this summer!

- Kathy

Monday, April 25, 2011

A Way in the Wilderness

A Way in the Wilderness
by Elizabeth Wagler

The Waglers, and Amish family, tell their story of financial struggle as they raise their large family and try to stay out of debt, unlike so many of their neighbors, who are deep in debt and despair. They come up with some creative solutions to earning a living, which I found interesting.

- Ann

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Black Swan

Black Swan

Nina would like the part of the Swan Queen in the ballet production of the Black Swan but does not make it. She persuades the director of the ballet she can dance the parts of both good and evil swans. He has his doubts but gives her the opportunity to prove he is wrong.

This movie starts out at a slow pace then crescendos into action. You will sit-at-the-edge of your seat as an emotionally unstable Nina struggles to be the perfect ballerina and fights personal demons that push her to the edge.

Even though this movie is based on Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake ballet and uses the music as background, it was not produced for relaxation, but for drama and suspense. Black Swan does contain graphic and violent scenes.

- Rose

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World's Most Dangerous Website

Inside Wikileaks
by Daniel Domscheit-Berg

Daniel Domscheit-Berg met Julian Assange in December 2007. In short time, he became the Wikileaks spokesperson as well as a content manager. His account of the quick & controversial rise to power of Assange is very interesting. With important secret documents being posted on their website daily, Daniel writes candidly about moral dilemmas facing the WikiLeaks team. Their travels throughout Europe and their overwhelming workload creates stress that inevitably fractures their team.

This book provides real insight into the European hacker world. From Julian's ego to the nomadic life they all had to assume, I really enjoyed the inside scoop. I recommend it to everyone who followed the WikiLeaks headlines.

- Holly

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Temple Grandin

Temple Grandin

First let me say that as soon as this movie was over I wanted to watch it again. It is that good.

This is the amazing true story of Temple Grandin, an autistic professor. Claire Danes plays the title role and does a great job of portraying just how challenging every part of life could be for someone with autism.

Contrary to the doctor’s suggestion, Temple’s mother refuses to institutionalize her when she is diagnosed with autism. Through determination and love from her mother, aunt, and a special teacher, Temple learns to adapt to situations that are confusing and terrifying concepts to her.

The movie does a great job showing Temple’s strengths and weaknesses and the reaction of the people around her. In the movie, her mother is quoted as saying “she is different, not less”. That sums it up beautifully.

My words can’t do justice to this film so I say:

Check it out and pay attention.

- Dixie

Friday, April 1, 2011

Minding Frankie

Minding Frankie
by Maeve Binchy

Noel is a drunk and bored with his job. He still lives with his parents but the family relationship is strained. One day, Noel receives a phone call at work from an old flame, Stella Dixon. She wants him to visit her at the hospital. He remembered she was fun and could match him drink for drink. But, the Stella in the hospital ward was very pregnant and dying of cancer. Then she delivers the shocking news, he is the father and Stella wants him to raise the child.

Noel, with the help of his cousin Emily, tries to turn his life around and takes responsibility of raising his daughter, Frankie. Moira, the social worker wants to take the baby away from Noel and constantly checks up on him. The community, even his parents, rally around him and help to take care of Frankie and shield them from the relentless and unyielding social worker.

With all the family and community support given to Noel, will he be able to remain sober, and most important, keep Frankie?

- Rose