Let's get right to it, shall we? :) (Again, lots of parentheses, lots of links, and lots of random pictures/gifs.)
Those I Finished:
Little Men by Louisa May Alcott. I liked it! It wasn't exactly my favorite, but it was Alcott; ergo it was good and interesting and charming and all those lovely things. The part when *SPOILERS!* Danny comes back and Teddy runs to his bed the next morning made me deep-down-in-my-soul happy. *END OF SPOILERS* 4 out of 5 stars.
Goodbye, Mr. Chips by James Hilton. I think I'll just go cry now. No, really, it was a very sad book, but it was so gentle and darling that I couldn't help falling in love with it. Oh, and for those of you who have read the original book of One Hundred and One Dalmatians, Chips reminded me of the old man whose fireside Pongo and Missis visit on their journey! Mind=blown. 5 out of 5 stars.
Mary Barton by Elizabeth Gaskell. WHOA. WHAT. This one was amazing! I've read that it was Gaskell's first book, and that really surprised me at first, because personally I think it excelled North and South and even Wives and Daughters. But then again, I guess I can also see where it's her first: she is extremely blunt in this novel; there's virtually no subtlety of theme at all--you are left in no doubt of what her intentions are with the story. Also, she interjects herself into the narrative a lot, with use of first person, the author appealing to the audience, perhaps just a little more than is strictly constructive. Anyway, the story is convoluted and dark and I'm not going to try to write a synopsis, so I'll just mention that it "kept me on the edge of my seat", so to speak. I didn't know how everything would turn out. Would there be a happy ending? A so-so ending? A tragic ending? Who actually did what? (Well, I kind of guessed that one, but it's pretty obvious.) *SPOILERS* Guys when Mr. Carson came and held Mr. Barton as Barton was dying. JUST HOW. *END OF SPOILERS* I don't think I'm getting across to you how good this book was. Read this quote, just read it:
Bright, beautiful came the slanting rays of the morning sun. It was time for such as she to hide themselves, with the other obscene things of night, from the glorious light of day, which was only for the happy.
I mean! *sputters* Yeah, it's definitely a rather depressing book, but I loved it, and I usually don't love depressing books. I don't even like Dickens (THERE I SAID IT). So, ya know, don't let that deter you from reading it, if you're like me and don't like those kinds of books.
Oh, OH, and THE COURTROOM SCENE I MEAN I SERIOUSLY ALMOST LOST MY ABILITY TO CAN. This is basically what I wanted to do to all of the characters afterwards:
Gahhhhhhh. 5 out of 5 stars.
Yankee Stranger by Elswyth Thane. You can read my Goodreads review here. 4 out of 5 stars.
My Ántonia by Willa Cather. I'd heard glowing things about this book, and it lived up to its reputation. An authentic, simple, but epic depiction of the way relationships change us, and the courage and grit of those who settled our country. Plus, it's SO beautifully written. Wowzah. 4 out of 5 stars.
Those I Didn't:
Hans Brinker by Mary Mapes Dodge. Just wasn't feelin' it, I'm sorry to say. I'm sure it's a good book, but I wasn't "in the mood."
The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson. This is the second time I've started and then stopped this book. Something must be wrong with me, because it sounds like a really fun story. I DO plan on reading and finishing this eventually, honest I do.
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. Haha, no. I'm sure I'll read it eventually (famous last words), but I was so not about to start that mammoth thing as school and music were winding down.
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. Hehe. I sowwy. It's a gothic romance, gothic romance is just Not My Genre, I read about six chapters, and decided to postpone my reading. Abject apologies, and all that (sort of).
And there she be! Now, on to tackling the third and final shelf, as soon as I finish the last three chapters of my re-read of Inkheart (that book is life, guys)! See you then ;) (Not that I won't be posting before then, of course. You understand.)