Book Review: Doodling by Jonathan Gould

Amazon summary
Semi-finalist in the 2011 Goodreads Choice Awards – Humor

Neville Lansdowne fell off the world.

Actually, he did not so much fall off as let go. The world had been moving so quickly lately and Neville was finding it almost impossible to keep up.

Doodling is an engaging comic fantasy which relates the events that befall Neville after he finds himself abandoned by the world and adrift in the middle of an asteroid field. Douglas Adams meets Lewis Carroll (with just a touch of Gulliver’s Travels) as Neville wanders through his new home, meeting a variety of eccentric characters and experiencing some most unexpected adventures.

My review
Two phrases come to mind when I read this book: “Stop the world. I want to get off,” and “It’s us against the world.” You will never think of those words quite the same way after reading Doodling.

On the surface, Doodling is a humorous, ridiculous story about missing toasters and wayward asteroids, and is completely enjoyable on that level.

Doodling is also a cautionary tale, warning against the danger of moving too fast, doing too much. Gould reminds us that life is always better when it’s taken at a reasonable pace.

Doodling is a semi-finalist in the 2011 Goodreads Choice Awards. Voting for the semi-finals ends November 20. You can take my word for it that it’s a great book or you can Doodling” target=”_blank”>get your own copy for $0.99 at Amazon or your favorite ebook retailer. (It’s short enough that you can comfortably read it on your computer if you don’t have an ereader.) But vote soon, the semi-finals end Sunday!

About the book
Title: Doodling
Author: Jonathan Gould
Release date: Feb 6, 2011
Where I got the book: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Rating: 5 stars

Know Me Better – Round 7

“Know Me Better” is a weekly meme hosted by I Am A Reader Not A Writer. Each week five questions are asked as a way for your readers to get to know you better. Want to play along? It’s easy! Just click the link above to take you over to the host’s page. From there, copy and paste the meme image into your blog along with the meme code. Link back to the host and you’re done!

This week’s questions

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I don’t know because I don’t know what people think. LOL I do know that a few years ago, back before Facebook, I posted a picture to a Yahoo group I’d been an active member of for years. Several people expressed surprise at my hair color. It seems everyone had envisioned me as a blonde. I don’t even want to examine that too closely.

Beach or Pool?
Eh, neither, really. I’m not really a water person. I can take low doses of the beach, and the pool is fine if I have something to do. As much as I love to read, I don’t really enjoy getting crispy while I do it.

If you had 24 hours alone how would you spend it?
I have lists and lists of things to get done when I have no distractions. But if you’re asking what I would choose to do with 24 hours alone, it would be reading, sleeping, and eating ice cream.

Coke or Pepsi?
Neither. Dr. Pepper or water.

If a movie was made about your life, who would you want to play the lead role and why?
Well, apparently I should pick someone blonde, but I won’t. In junior high and high school, people told me I looked like Alyssa Milano. I didn’t see it then, and I certainly don’t see it now, but at least she’s the right age.

See what these other bloggers had to say

*CLOSED* Gratitude Giveaways Hop – Win The Help

Welcome to the Gratitude Giveaways Hop hosted by I Am A Reader, Not a Writer and All-Consuming Books! This hop runs until November 27th which will give you plenty of time to enter all the giveaways.

There are 300 blogs each saying thanks to their followers by offering a simple, easy, one entry giveaway. No long list of optional entries on this hop – they are not allowed. The list of blogs is under my entry form.

I’m giving away a hardcover copy of The Help. Just enter your name and email address in the form.  (Sorry, US only) Following is not required, but is always appreciated! It also ensures you don’t miss all my great book giveaways and reviews. 🙂

First Dentist Appointment

Today, Bennett had his first dental appointment. It wasn’t his first visit as he has been present for all of Jeffrey’s check-ups and several of mine. Jeffrey had an appointment at 11am today, and when we first got there, Bennett was excited and happy. Then Miss Julie (our hygienist) asked him if he was going to let her count his teeth later. Apparently, the answer to that was NO. He spent the rest of the Jeffrey’s visit standing with his face pressed against the hallway wall opposite the exam cubby. No, he wasn’t in trouble. I don’t do time-out. He just didn’t want anyone to talk to him and apparently he’s still in the “If I can’t see you, you can’t see me” stage. Of course, several staff members tried to talk to him, but he was having none of that.

So Julie and I were both thinking that his afternoon visit was going to be very interesting. His appointment wasn’t until 2pm, so we came home for lunch. (Got the car cleaned out, too. That was an adventure.) He was not happy when we left the house. When we got to the office, I reminded him that Miss Julie wouldn’t do anything that would hurt. As we walked into the cubby, he asked, “Are you sure it won’t hurt?”

He was not at all sure about all this at first.

We promised him it wouldn’t. It was supposed to be just a “get to know you” visit, but once he got settled in, he did so well that she went ahead and cleaned his teeth.

Julie asked him if he still let Mama help him brush his teeth. He said yes, and Jeffrey piped up and said, “I help him, too!” Bennett said, “Jeppy, too.” Then he exclaimed proudly, “I pee all by myself!” Because apparently, when you’re three, everything you do in the bathroom is connected.

He did a fabulous job and as soon as we got in the car, they both started fussing and yelling at each other. Exasperated, I asked, “Why do y’all act so good when we go someplace, then get crazy as soon as we get in the car?” Bennett replied, “Because if we don’t have good manners, they’ll kick us out.”

*CLOSED*”Make It Mine” Monday – jesus freakz + buddha punx Book Giveaway

This week’s book is jesus freakz + buddha punx by M.E. Purfield. You can read my review here.

You can get additional entries by
+1 Sharing on Facebook
+1 Tweeting about the giveaway
You can easily do both things right from this post, using the buttons at the bottom of the post. (To get the link for the fb post or tweet, just click on the time stamp below your post.)

Don’t forget to vote for next week’s book. The poll is near the top of the sidebar and you can vote for more than one book. I’ve been reading a lot of ebooks lately, so our list is dwindling. I’ll have more choices up next week.

Entry will close at 11:59 PM EST, Friday, November 18, 2011. Winner will be chosen using and will be notified by email. Winner will have 48 hours to reply to claim the book. For more information, see the “Make It Mine” Monday page. Sorry, US only.

Sunday Summary

Recap of last week
The Charlatan’s Boy, Meet Franklin Bean, Worlds Apart, Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out, Driving to BelAir. Wow. No wonder I’m tired.

“Make It Mine” Monday
Emily W. was the winner of A Sound Among the Trees

I also wrote about Jeffrey’s birthday last weekend and our Lego overload. (Okay, I’m the only one on overload.) We went to today to Toys R Us to get his Lego video game and saw this. I give up. (It is kind of cool, though.)

Yes, it’s a Lego Wii remote. Uses real Legos and everything.

Sneak peek at next week
“Make It Mine” Monday: jesus freakz + buddha punx by M.E. Purfield
You know the drill. If you want a different book, you have a few hours left to vote. I’m trying to get a larger variety of books, but most of the books I’ve been reading are ebooks. I do have several paperbacks coming up, so I’ll be adding to the poll soon.

Gratitude Giveaways Hop: Nov 17-27
I think I’m probably going to giveaway a hardcover copy of The Help that I won. (Which I suppose means I need to post a review before Wednesday.)

Book Review: Driving to BelAir by William G. Jones

Amazon summary
Is it the road trip from hell or the opportunity of a lifetime?

Dale had it all–a prominent career with a Manhattan ad agency, a luxury car, a beautiful, rich girlfriend–but when his ex-fiancĂ© calls to tell him that his father has died, his world crashes around him. What he thought would be a quick trip home for a funeral turns into a week-long journey to scatter his father’s ashes in the Gulf of Mexico. Trapped in a cantankerous old car with two quarrelsome brothers, a still-bitter ex-fiancĂ©, an increasingly high-maintenance girlfriend, and a pee-happy poodle, Dale finds himself trapped as everything that can go wrong does.

Will a father’s last wish be the key to reuniting a family torn apart by tragedy? Or will Dale lose everything while driving to BelAir.

Book Length: 41,500 words.

My review
I laughed and I cried. No, I really did. This novella packs a big punch.

Dale ran fast and far from an abusive father and the family farm. Three years later, he’s back with a spoiled girlfriend and her little dog, too. To fulfill his father’s last wishes, he is supposed to make a trip from Indiana to Florida to scatter Dad’s ashes in the ocean. The catch is that he has to go with his brothers. One has just a little problem with marijuana, and the other is nursing a huge grudge against Dale for leaving home.

Can they make it all the way without killing each other? Or leaving someone on the side of the road? Maybe. But whatever happens along the way, you’ll laugh out loud. You might even shed a tear or two. It’s all worth it.

About the book
Title: Driving to BelAir: A Novella
Author: William G. Jones
Publisher: J.R. co… Publishing
Release date: August 25, 2011
Where I got the book: I received this book free from the author as part of Adopt An Indie Month.
Rating: 5 stars Can’t think of any reason everyone wouldn’t like this. There is a little bit of talking about sex, but it’s nothing graphic.