on being sick and comfort reads (+ 2 mini-reviews!)

I don’t do sick well. I’m not the kind of person who can suck it up and plow through. When I’m sick my world collapses into a horrible mess of tissues and teabags. I knew it was bound to happen – the majority of my family/co-workers have been battling colds/the flu this past month, so I figured it was only a matter of time before I caught it.

Well caught it I did. Thankfully I had a long weekend and apart from remaining a bit stuffy, I’m feeling much better.

Like many people, when I’m feeling crummy there’s nothing I like more than snuggling in bed and getting lost in a book. Also, like most people, when I’m feeling crummy my reading tastes change. I just don’t have it in me to get through a tough or emotionally-investing read.

I wanted to find some good comfort reads: easy, light-hearted books that didn’t require much thought. Naturally I already have quite a few of these, but I was in the mood for something new, a book or two I haven’t already read. As much as I love my e-reader I decided to go the traditional way (to be honest, Nook Colors + cases are weighty and I didn’t feel like dealing with that). Luckily for me I have more than a few books on my shelves that have yet to be read.

My first pick was Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes by R.L. Stine. Confession time, guys: I have never read a Goosebumps book before. I know, I know. Chalk it up to an overactive imagination as a child: I avoided these books when I was younger because I was convinced they were terrifying. Unlike me, Matt was a huge fan of the series and when he was sick last year I bought a few books. Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes was my introduction to the world of R.L. Stine and, for what it was, I had a good time.

Joe and Mindy Burton’s father is obsessed with two things: his garden and lawn ornaments. There’s a friendly rivalry with the neighbor until the day Mr. Burton brings home two fat and ugly gnomes. Suddenly the gardens are getting terrorized and Joe refuses to believe it’s his dog’s fault.

Short chapters, a quick pace, and fun characters made this an extremely quick read. I’m not sure if this is the case for the series as a whole or just this book, but Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes definitely felt like a “boy’s book.” Not that that bothered me, nor would it have bothered me when I was younger.

I expected a bit more than I got, though I was pleasantly surprised at the ending. Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes held my interest at a time when I desperately wanted to take my mind off my cold.

I’ve got a little collection of gnomes and that was what led me to buy this book. I can’t fault the writing style – this is, after all, a book written for children. Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes was fun while it lasted and I can see why so many kids love Goosebumps.

Yesterday I picked up Practical Demonkeeping, Christopher Moore’s debut. I’m a HUGE fan of his, but had never read this one before.

Travis, a 90-year old trapped in the body of a 25-year old is stuck with an invisible demon (Catch) by his side after an accidental summoning. Seventy years later Travis has finally tracked down the one person who can help him free himself.

Wow. Just…wow. Another short book with a few pages per chapter, but definitely not what I have come to expect from Moore. I suppose a head cold has subdued my critical eye however, because I found myself going along with it. I didn’t have any feelings for the characters, but that was my intention in the first place. For once I was more than happy to play the observer as opposed to feeling like I was part of their world (& now it’s stuck in your head. You’re welcome.)

Hidden among the numerous plots and characters were moments of brilliance, however. There were a few parts that made me laugh out loud and it was a taste of Moore’s genius and what was to come.

What about you? What are you comfort reads?


8 thoughts on “on being sick and comfort reads (+ 2 mini-reviews!)

  1. I hope you’re feeling better now! I’ve been battling a respiratory infection for the last month and I feel pathetic! Sadly, I haven’t been able to indulge in comfort reading — too many review books in the queue — but normally I go to cozy English-y classics or something moody and gothic. Rebecca is almost always picked up.

  2. Never read a Goosebumps book?? Guess there’s a first time for everything! As for Christopher Moore, I have yet to read any of his books, but my boyfriend is a big fan. He sounds pretty brilliant and funny! Hope you are feeling better now!

  3. I think Christopher Moore is hilarious. I haven’t read this one – but I think I own almost all his books. I’ve read all the vamp ones. But this one didn’t seem to meet up to your expectations for him…ergh.

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