Thursday, May 05, 2011

Book Reviews: The Help, GWDT, The Pact

I am still chugging away on my 2011 reading plan.

These are the books that I read in February, March, and April.

The Help

I loved this book! The characters and their stories totally sucked me in. It was such a great way to understand more about the South and race relations in the South in the 1960s. I'm not a Southern girl, so I think I related less to the stories about Junior League and sweet tea, but I loved this book just the same.

My rating: 5 stars out of 5


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

I may have been the last person in America to read this book and I may be one of the only people that didn't like it. The first 100 pages were so boring I almost quit. Then I started to get interested in the story on the Vangers which kept me going. I enjoyed uncovering the mystery of the Vanger family, but the amount of sexual violence depicted turned my stomach. At the end of the day the book was just OK for me. I will not be reading the rest of the books in the series.

My rating: 3 stars out of 5


The Pact

I think I am done with Jodi Picoult books. I've enjoyed several of them (especially 19 minutes and Plain Truth), but now I realize that all of the books follow the same formula (crime --> lies --> courtroom drama --> truth). This was by far my least favorite Picoult book I've read. I found the characters to be completely irrational and unbelievable. I just wanted to smack some sense into half of them. And the themes of the The Pact are seriously HEAVY. Pregnancy, suicide, molestation, marital strife, and the loss of best friendships. I literally felt sick reading most of this book and tried to finish it as quick as possible just to find out how it ended.

My rating: 2 stars out of 5


Did you read any of these books? What were your thoughts?

31 comments:

Girl of The Grove said...

I agree with your thoughts on The Pact word for word. It was a little too perverse for my liking.

Girl of The Grove said...
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Carrie @ Laugh Love Eat Ice Cream said...

I've read the first two books on your list, and I agree with your reviews 100% The Help was ah-mazing! I can't remember the last time I loved a book so much. I can't wait for the movie coming out in August! I had to force myself to finish The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and have no desire to finish the series. Based on our similar preferences I think I'll be skipping The Pact. :)

Katie said...

I read both The Help and GWTDT - I love The Help and am really looking forward to the movie in August!

GWTDT affected me the same way - slow slow slow, interesting, EWWWWW. The Swedish movie wasn't bad, although I am also looking forward to the American version too!

(Am I book to movie person or what?!)

Classy Fab Sarah said...

I'm glad I didn't read The Pact yet... I just don't think it sounds like my cup of tea. However, I love love The Help! I can't WAIT for the movie!!

BeckyJo606 said...

I could not agree with you more about Jodi Picoult. I am definitely taking a break from her books for awhile!

Vee said...

I read the first two, and pretty much agree exactly with your reviews. I gave Dragon Tattoo 4 stars because I was into it by the end, but since then I've had little to no interest in finishing the series (and the second book has been waiting for me on my Kindle...).

I've only read a few Picoult novels, and not The Pact, and while I LOVED the first one I read, they started to get predictable after that... She has a definitely style, from which she doesn't deviate. Some might even call it a *formula.* I don't think I'll stop reading Picoult, but I certainly won't be rushing into any soon.

The Coach's Wife said...

You aren't the last one to read The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.. that is my book next month. I'm not sure how I'll feel about it, I have heard its stomach-turning. I loved The Help though, I hope they don't butcher it with the movie!

Linda said...

I enjoyed both The Help and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. I've given up on Picoult books. All too formulaic.

Newlyweds on a Budget said...

I LOVED the Help. Just finished it about a week ago. Couldn't put it down!

Currently reading: Something Blue.

Amanda said...

I totally agree, I LOVED The Help - can't wait for the movie!

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

Completely know what you mean about The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. When I read it, I could barely get through the first 150 pages and then the last 100 were rough too. I went ahead and read the next two books and thought they were better.

California Wife said...

I agree with you on TGWTDT, but I promise the second and third ones are a million times better. They aren't nearly as slow, and the story gets really good!

Sonya said...

Loved The Help. Planning to read TGWTDT. Someone had mentioned the violence, but it doesn't tend to bother me as much in a book. I guess we'll see! I read The Pact. Don't remember it all that well. I love Jodi's books. Even though they are definitely the same format (with the exception of her first couple of books), I still enjoy them. I'm always surprised by how it ends!

amybyrd said...

I loved the Help, still haven't read TGWTDT(so you aren't the last). The Pact was the first Picoult I read and is probably my fave--I started liking them less and less as I read more for the same reasons you mentioned.

amybyrd said...

I loved The Help, still haven't read TGWTDT( so you aren't the last one), and I liked The Pact because it was the first I read by Jodi Picoult but I have started liking them less and less for the reasons you mentioned.

B. Wilson said...

Thanks for the update on The Pact. I have only read one JP book and loved it... but I don't want to read the same plot repeatedly. Plus, heavy topics for me = no good! Unless they are my same issues of which I can't get enough empathy through blogs, books, etc.

Kelsey @ Seattle Smith's said...

I sadly couldn't get into the dragon books!!

Kay said...

I just read The Pact last week - and I agree with you, it was horrible. I had to finish to see how it ended and the whole time I wished I had never started.

Britt said...

You are definitely not the only one who didn't / doesn't like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I have been TRYING to read it for at least 4 months now. I started it awhile back a quit after the first 40 pages or so. My friend insisted I read it, that I would love it. So I picked it back up and started over. I'm now stuck about 1/2 through and have no desire to continue reading it. I will finish it one day... just don't know when that will be. :-/

USCEmily said...

I loved The Help, and, like you, was not enamored with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I didn't like the sexual violence either, and I definitely won't be reading the follow-up books!

Becky said...

I am right there with you on The Help and Girl With A Dragon Tatoo. I just finished it last week and I won't be reading the rest of the series. After all the hype trying to figure out 'who done it', the end was so disappointing.

Roomie said...

New(ish) reader here! I have only not read The Help but it's also on my to read list. I got stuck on page 60 or some fo the GWDT and I hated it. I can't and don't want to finish it (that's completely unlike me - I also only read magazine front to back without skipping to articles that interest me) and I don't plan on reading any of the others.

Love your blog!

Shoshanah said...

I haven't read Girl With the Drago Tatoo yet either, so you're not the last. But I haven't read The Help either, and I've heard so many great things about it, I can't wait to read that one!

Perfectly Imperfect said...

I still need to read the top two, but I have to agree on the third. Her books are so predictable and without fail, I end up pissed off at the end. But for some reason I can't stop reading them!

Lil' Woman said...

I want to read The Help, this is all the buzz.

Jodi said...

I'm your newest blog follower. I found you at Kelly's Korner. I am born and raised in Boston but lived in Long Beach for a year when I graduated college! I love traveling too so have enjoyed reading your blog.

Tales of a young mamma said...

I just found you via kelley's korner and I'm a new follower. I've read all three of those books- just finished The Help last weekend actually! It's been several years since I read the Pact but I actually remember really liking it. I like all of her books though. And I have the Stieg Larsson series and have read them in both english and swedish (bettter in swedish obviously) and love them also! But the first IS my least favorite. A little slow for my taste. But I think I can relate to it much more being Swedish, and having spent time in Stockholm where the other two books take place. And the help was also great! I found it hard at first to read because of the way two out of the three characters speak, but once I got into it I didn't even notice!

Mimi said...
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Mimi said...

totally agree about the Jodi P books. After a few, they do get a little predictable, but they're a good break from time to time - like a lifetime movie or cheesy chick flick!

sherri lynn said...

I read The Help and LOVED it! Definitely agree with your 5 out of 5 stars. Girl With the Dragon Tattoo - also wasn't a huge fan. I was in China at the time with limited English books to read, so I read it, but I haven't read any of his other books since. I haven't read The Pact, but am kind of over Jodi Picoult...

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