How Christmas is celebrated around the world

These pictures were taken from Huffington Post (blog)

India
Malaysia
France

These pictures were taken from BBC News.

Guatemala
Indonesia

From ABC News:

Australia
England

Beautiful pictures, aren’t they??? :) How was your Christmas? Anything special? Or extraordinary? Whatever it was, I hope you had loads of fun! I know I did!

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson

Jenna Fox woke up one fine day remembering nothing from her past. The 17-year-old doesn’t remember who she was, who her family was, who her friends were, where she went to school, nothing. After a year’s long coma caused by an accident, Jenna woke up trying to remember as much as she can but finding it quite difficult.

Mother provided Jenna home videos to watch hoping to trigger some of her lost memories. But all Jenna sees is a girl who looks like her doing things she doesn’t remember doing. Her grandmother, Lily, urges her to skip the rest and watch the final video, the video which was made just before Jenna’s accident. Jenna ignores Lily and continues to watch them in order. Lily is the only one who behaves coldly towards Jenna, unlike her Mother and Father who obviously dote on her.

Then Jenna also meets her neighbour and first friend post-coma, Clayton Bender, a photographer who likes to feed the birds. Her parents initially didn’t allow her to leave the house alone so Mr. Bender’s like her confidante. He may not be a typical teenager’s friend but he’s someone whom Jenna can talk to and also someone who doesn’t seem to be keeping secrets from her. Well, not that he has his own personal secrets.

Why did they move away from Boston, their home? Why stay so far away from Jenna’s doctors? Why don’t any of her old friends contact her? Why don’t her parents let her attend school? So many questions but nobody’s answering them. Lily does give Jenna a hint or two and it’s definitely not to strengthen their relationship.

The Adoration of Jenna Fox is written from Jenna’s point of view so we readers are also trying to figure out the truth about everything that’s happened. Chapters are really short and abundant. There are also poems written by Jenna to reflect her feelings and emotions in the process of discovering her identity.

For me, it was slow to start with but Jenna’s relationship with her Mother and Lily are certainly intriguing. I also like the part where Jenna goes to school for the first time post-coma and was wondering how she’d interact with her new friends, given that she remembers nothing from before. Oh well, she manages well and even does a good impression on some of them. And especially one of them, Ethan.

I wasn’t totally moved by the book, it was just okay to me. It’s a quick read, with lots of short chapters and sentences along with dictionary definitions of some words. I guess Jenna doesn’t remember parts of her vocabulary too.

With numerous awards already in hand, this book is going to be turned into a movie coming from 20th Century Fox! So, who do you think would make a good Jenna Fox?

Lastly, thanks to Em from Em’s Bookshelf for I won this book from her giveaway.

Other reviews: alita.reads.

More books to win!

Princess Bookie is giving away two sets of cool books and a mystery ARC. You must be a follower of her blog to be eligible. Open worldwide. Ends Dec 31, 2009.

Jessica from Book Bound is giving 3 winners the books of their choice. Open worldwide. Contest ends Dec 18, 2009.

Dar from Peeking Between the Pages is giving away two copies of Dragon House by John Shors. Open worldwide. Contest ends Dec 19, 2009.

Steph Su from Steph Su Reads is giving away a copy of Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers. Open worldwide. Ends Dec 25, 2009.

Miss Eliza from strange and random happenstance is giving away a signed copy of Thumb Flagging by Jerome Peterson. Open worldwide. Ends Dec 20, 2009.

Reading with Tequila is giving away a cool set of books! And the more followers she gets, the more winners there’ll be. Open worldwide. Ends Dec 27, 2009.

Teddyree from The Eclectic Reader is giving away two winners the book of their choice. Open worldwide. Ends January 31, 2010.

Robby from Running for Fiction is giving away some YA books. Open worldwide. Ends Jan 31, 2010.