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Entries in book review (7)

Wednesday
Aug252010

Sarah Pekkanen "The Opposite of Me" makes me think differently about sisters (book review)

Having twins can make you feel crazy.

Having twin girls can make you neurotic when you....

think about them becoming teenagers,

wonder if they'll stay friends,

worry about one having a prom date while the other doesn't...

I could go on for days.

 

Finding Sarah Pekkanen and learning about sisters

Image via SarahPekkanen.com

Sarah Pekkanen's debut novel came to me by way of my friend Lindsay, and a group of women writers (dare I say 'sisters') who joined together to help Sarah promote her book and boost presales. Pre-orders, I'm learning, are really important for a new writer and their first (probably second and third) book. Lindsay sent me an email from Jennifer Weiner (yes, THE Jennifer Weiner ) explaining that anyone who pre-ordered "The Opposite of Me" would be eligible to receive a copy of one of Jennifer's books...signed by the author!

I was excited to have Jennifer Weiner's email address.

I was excited to have her sign "Little Earthquakes" for me.

I was thrilled to find out "The Opposite of Me" was about twin sisters. Maybe I would learn something from this book!

I was also touched by the love and support the other writers were giving to their 'sister'.

 

Twin Sisters bring drama but they also bring lots of love

"The Opposite of Me " is a tale of twin sisters who, like my own twins, are very, very different. In the book, twins Lindsey and Alex look different, have different interests, and are near polar opposites: Lindsey is brainy, a straight-A student, with average looks and popularity while Alex is a beauty, with average grades, but the most popular girl in the school.

As you can imagine, these sisters grow up to lead very different lives, and while deep down they love each other, they have very little to say to one another and have even less in common.

As family secrets are revealed and drama unfolds, the sisters find their way back to each other. It's not easy at first, but you see that there has always been a deeper connection.

My Hope

Reading "The Opposite of Me" made me think about what I hope for the future of The Twofer and their relationship with each other. They may have the same friends for now, but one day this may change. One may have a boyfriend before the other. One may be popular while the other better in school. But in the end they share something that I hope distance and time will never fade - the twin connection.

Buy the book. Support debut novels and freshman authors. You won't be disappointed.

Janine

Disclosure: I'm pretty sure the FTC can read above how I bought this book with my own hard-earned Amazon money. Click all the other book links people so I can do it again! All opinions expressed here are my own and this post was neither reviewed nor approved by the author, publisher, or any friend of Sarah Pekkanen. Also, in case you are wondering, Jennifer Weiner's book, "Little Earthquakes" that I received free of charge is pretty awesome too!

Thursday
Feb182010

Book Review: "Hear No Evil" by Matthew Paul Turner offers a fundamentalist spin on music 

I first learned about Matthew Paul Turner from his wife over breakfast at Blissdom '09. Jessica was telling me that he had written about his experience growing up in a strict fundamentalist Christian household and named the book Churched: One Kid's Journey Toward God Despite a Holy Mess .

Some of the stories she told me seemed crazy, until you realize this was his LIFE we were discussing. And, it was, well, funny!

Music is the work of the Devil

It's no surprise that Turner grew up NOT hearing most of the music we knew. Even popular Christian groups were frowned upon in his church. He also grew up in a world where people, even young kids and teens, received direct messages or callings from God to do things. Turner received the message that he was to be the Christian version of Michael Jackson. And when God speaks, his people listen. So what was surprising to me is that his parents let him attend university in Nashville to study music business.

A Mind of His Own

Hear No Evil: My Story of Innocence, Music, and the Holy Ghost is a collection of stories that made me laugh, raise my eyebrows a few times, and think about how music has moved me in life. Turner is open, honest, and in my mind brave to reveal how sheltered he was (the chapter Bubble Boy covers some of it) yet how he found his own beliefs and spirituality through music.

I learned more about the world of Christian music, the issue of singing to spread God's word - or for fame and fortune, and just how controversial Amy Grant really was. Turner's stories and observations give an insider's view of the contemporary Christian music scene filled with humor and an often uncomfortable honesty.

That honesty is what drew me in page after page. Now I can't wait to get my hands on Churched!

To learn more or to purchase this book visit Random House Inc.

Janine

Disclosure: I received the review copy of Hear No Evil at no cost from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group. All views and opinions with regard to the product or company are my own and are not influenced, nor reviewed by the company prior to posting.

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