Archive for November 2009
I’m mixed as to what this book could be classified under. I wonder is science fiction would do the job? although not much science was really mentioned. However it’s post apocalyptic. Yet that doesn’t necessairly mean it’s science fiction. Do you get my dilemma? anyway, I rather like books like these, they make me think. Then I start getting paranoid and wonder what would really happen if something like this were to really occur. It makes you think, and it makes your hair rise on the back of your neck. Plus, it also makes you count your blessings a lot more.
One Second After gives you a very interesting scenario; what would happen if an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) were to be detonated in your country? the question is answered through John Matherson as he struggles to survive and save his family through this huge life changing event as it plunges the US back into the Dark Ages and into, quite literally, utter chaos. John is a college history professor and has unwittingly became one of its’ chief leaders of their little town of Black Mountain, North Carolina. He has to go through very tough decisions, very hard moments, and very dangerous ones in a country that’s total anarchy and where survival is the only thing left on one’s mind.
This was definitely mind blowing. It’s just so realistic because it’s true, we are so dependent on technology and with one simple EMP everything would just shut down. Nothing would work. It’s just amazing what we take for granted and when it’s not there, we panic and suddenly we feel so primitive. It was so interesting and I found myself turning page after page wondering what was going to happen next. Since everything was just shutting down, and John and some others in important positions were having to come together to make important decisions you wanted to know what choices one had to make when placed in a situation like this. It was just so interesting to see that just in a matter of weeks martial law sets in, decisions as to who gets the most rations, or what to do with those who are stealing and looting and get caught doing so. It was just an eye opener to see a well structured society as the one we are so used to just crumble and fall once something as catastrophic as an EMP happens.
Again I have to say what an eye opener this book is, the realism is there and everything is just so tragic especially when I read about what was happening in the senior’s home. I nearly wanted to cry. Everything was well described and the emotion is so tense and raw, you could feel what John was going through, you can feel the desparation, the anger, and anguish as you see the events through his point of view. Given the theme of this book, it’s definitely not a happy one, there were moments where you go get a chuckle or two but not so often. Even the ending, wasn’t really a great one it left you with an empty feeling, because you still weren’t sure what was going on out there, it certainly felt as if you were being kept in the dark, the same as the inhabitants of Black Mountain.
I loved the writing style of the book and the action. It just made me keep going. I wanted to see who survived and who didn’t. I wanted the best out of the characters I liked but knew it wasn’t going to end this way because the situation just seemed so bleak. You saw John from being a college professor with a specialty in military history (with military experience) to a hestitant leader who saw society crumble in days. I really did like John’s character development. It was very real and emotion filled. The other characters played their part but they were in the background the majority of the time. It was really John you’d be following throughout this book.
There’s a few things of the book I didn’t like. There were scenes where I felt there was a corny sense of patriotism and it was starting to look like a real bad Hollywood movie. Some moments were eye rolling and it sort of ruined the reading experience of the book. Then there were parts where it was predictable (the scene with Elizabeth and Ben jeeeeezzzz give me a break). So in a way, it was like reading a Hollywood movie in a book which is unfortunate as the book was fine without those moments. Also, this book is not for the squeamish there are moments of graphic violence among other things mentioned.
Overall, an eye opening book, because this sort of thing could really happen to us. It makes you now wonder about what’s being done to prevent this sort of thing. I great recommend this book for those that are into post apocalyptic fiction.
I give it an 8 out of 10.
Hello dear readers and fellow book bloggers.
I will be moving into my very first apartment (omg yes, I’m leaving the nest) so posts will be a little slow at the moment. Right now I have one book ready to post a review (less than 100 pages to read) and after that my reading will be slow.
To those that have contacted me about book reviews: I will get to your emails shortly but not until after I move, I don’t want to give you an old address to send the books to!
I should be back on my feet in a week or two! until then I’m going to try and read as much as I can to bombard all of you with my reviews! ahahah. Until then, see you in a week!
I can’t remember where I heard this book from. It seems I come across so many books I would like to take a look at and then I can’t seem to remember where I saw it in the first place. Anyway, like the cover? isn’t it awesome. The one thing I like about kid’s books, their covers are so eye catching it’s like candy.
The Magic Thief:Stolen by Sarah Prineas is about a boy thief/spy living on the streets, named Conn who manages to steal the locus magicalicus from a wizard named Nevery. Nevery catches him and instead of punishing him, decides to take him under his wing to train him as an apprentice. Conn’s special, it should have killed him when he stole the stone. While trying to learn how to read, and between trying to find his very own locus magicalicus at the same time, something is happening in the city of Wellmet. Magic is slowly being drained from the city and if there is no magic, the city will suffer. Nevery is being called to find out what’s happening and what is causing the slow drainage of magic. Conn also attempts to help him, and uncovers a plot between a magic rival of Nevery’s and someone familiar to Conn himself.
This book was a short quick read, and filled with action to keep you turning page after page. What I really liked is the really neat illustrations that comes with each chapter. Also in between chapters, is pages that looks like it’s from Nevery’s journal in his writing and in his point of view which adds a little bit more to the plot to round it out evenly. This was also nice to read and it was a nice addition to the book. What I also enjoyed were the names of the places and setting of the book: City of Wellmet, and within the city there are districts like: The Twilight (bad area!) or The Sunrise (rich area), Heartsease (where Conn and Nevery live). Places like these make the setting more magical and fantastical, but I like it as it adds more feeling to the setting. What’s also a neat little add on to the book is at the end you’ll find two recipes for biscuits. You’ll find in the novel, the significance of them and how they’re a very common object in the novel. There is also a glossary and a few extras at the back of the book which is also a nice add on.
Conn sort of reminds me of Oliver Twist a little, he’s a thief and a street orphan who managed to survive for all this time before he met Nevery. He’s very brave and reckless and his curiosity and stubbornness does get the best out of him, but since the book is in his point of view his thoughts were very amusing and sometimes funny to read, especially when he meets with the Duchess and with the incident with the truth serum and the guards (a funny moment in the book). He’s a great character, and an exciting one who’s not afraid of going out there in the city all by himself which always creates some form of trouble or excitement.
However, I wish there was more to Nevery. Hopefully in the next book there will be a little more background information about him. It’s certainly not necessary but it’s always nice to read about it to give the character a more “rounded” out feel and not be so two dimensional. Another character I am curious about is Benet. I’d like to know more about him as well. It seems at times that background information might be helpful or perhaps would have helped in making the plot and its’ characters have more depth but then again, it’s not necessary and perhaps it will all be explained in the next books to come.
Overall a great page turner with plenty of action, comedy, and fantasy. I couldn’t have asked for anything better. Think of Oliver Twist in a fantastical setting. I will definitely be picking up the next book in this series it’s certainly well worth it!
I give it an 8 out of 10.
For the second time since I started book blogging, I’m dropping another book. The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan. It had great potential. It had zombies damnit! but…well, after 100 pages in (my limit, if at 100 pages I’m not into it, it’s gone) all I have to say is:
MARY: SHUT UP ABOUT TRAVIS FOR @#$#$@ SAKE! YOU WHINE TOO MUCH!
There. I’m done. Rant over. Kudos to you guys who managed to read and finish this novel and for tolerating Mary.
With the holiday season now upon us, have you left any hint – subtle or otherwise – for books family and friends might buy you for Christmas? Do you like to receive books, or do you prefer certificates so you can choose your own?
- I definitely prefer certificates!!!! my mom used to have headaches because she knew I had so many books, the hombre gave up a long time ago and just said to give him a list of the top 3 books I want and then he’ll get them for me makes him happy and me happy. A lot of people think certificates are kinda “cheap” to give. Not me. Give me as many as you’d like. Especially ones from Amazon. Those I love the most.
none. yes. Wipe that wide eyed look from your face I think because Wednesday was a day off for nearly everyone (including post office) so mail might be delayed. It’s ok. It’s not like I have so much to read.
Pretty Little Liars – Sara Shepard
Not much this time what are your answers?
First I have to say thank you Sourcebooks for giving me a review copy of this book. I have never ever read Georgette Heyer novels. I’ve heard of her, and have seen blogs reviewing her books and I was curious. I knew she was very well known for her historical accuracy and her historical fiction novels. Why not give her a try I thought. So I was glad to have a chance to receive and review a copy of this book. First thing I noticed, I love the cover. It’s nice, simple and minimal but there’s just something about her that just draws me to it. It’s actually perfect for a murder mystery story.
No Wind of Blame is a murder myster/whodunit. It’s about the murder of Wally Carter, who was mysteriously killed while walking to his friend’s house. Inspector Hemingway is now put on this case to find out who had killed him. What’s very puzzling about this murder are a couple of things: every character who knew Wally had a motive to kill him. Also, no one was near the weapon when it was fired. The story takes you through each of the suspects motives, and you’re left literally until the last few pages of the novel to find out who had done it and why. It will keep you guessing right until the end.
Mind you, I have never read any of the Agatha Christie novels and from what I hear, Georgette Heyer is known for having similarities with Agatha Christie novels. I was curious as lately I’ve been going through a mystery suspense phase and thought this would be a great addition. I have no regrets. It’s certainly a very “English” mystery and I wouldn’t be surprised if this book was made into one of those “Masterpiece Theatre” movies you see on Sunday evenings. (If there is a movie about it, please let me know because I would love to see it). I liked this book because it seemed to have captured the very essence of English society of the time and it was just so accurately done I had no problems picturing the setting, the characters, and as I progressed with the story it just got more interesting.
I loved the mystery aspect of this, it certainly did keep me guessing! you’re actually left until nearly the very end to learn who the culprit was. I found myself always changing my mind on who might have done it (some of my guesses were so outrageous I’m actually laughing about it now) but it was nice how it was written to make it look like as if each of the suspects could have possibly done it since they all had a motive to do it. Each suspect was explained with their possible connection to the murder and it was done in such a clever way you’re left jumping from one character to another pointing the finger as to who did it. Definitely a job well done in that aspect of writing.
Character wise, I liked most of them. With a name like Ermyntrude what’s not to like! I have to admit I liked Mary from the start. She just seemed so steady and had a serious head on her shoulders I enjoyed her character a lot. I thought Vicky was one of the most annoying characters in the book. I couldn’t really stand her and her melodrama and immaturity just made you hate her even more, especially when she started pointing the finger and trying to get Inspector Hemingway to go to other possible suspects to take the blame off of her (in many ways I had it set in my head that she was the one who committed the crime and she was my main suspect, but only because I just couldn’t stand her and wanted her out of the way). Hugh doesn’t really help much with telling Vicky to be quiet and I really don’t see what he sees in her but to each his/her own, right? (I rather wanted him to be with Mary). The Prince was such a stereotypical charming character but had a phony side to him that made him enjoyable to read, especially his behavior towards Ermyntrude, it was obvious he was after her, but it was just funny to see him try and get her attention.
A few criticisms about this book, well the plot is a little slow but it’s to give you a proper introduction to the characters and a way to get you to know them more so the mystery will work out perfectly. I understand that and think it was a necessity otherwise if you were just to read about the suspects and their motives without really getting to know their character it just wouldn’t be a fun read at all. It could have moved a little more quickly though. Another thing, because this book was written in the 30′s, it’s a very different style of writing and I found it a little hard to get used to. Plus Inspector Hemingway got so analytical about the case, and if you combine that with the style of writing it got hard to follow and understand sometimes. I had to reread some passages to get the understanding of it.
Overall, a wonderful mystery read if you have the patience to get through the writing and a slow moving but interesting plot. It’s certainly a lot like watching those Masterpiece Theatre mystery movies! If this is the same as Agatha Christie novels then I’m willing to give her a try and hope I enjoyed reading it as much as this book.
I give it a 7 out of 10.
I’m on a total roll. I’ve been bringing out those reviews as if I was on permanent vacation and getting paid for it (wouldn’t THAT be nice?) I’m on the verge of finishing No Wind of Blame by Georgette Heyer and I’m still trying to figure out who did it (it’s a crime mystery/whodunit deal) and I still don’t know and I have less than 100 pages to go. It makes it all the more exciting!
I also went to the thrift store today and picked up some cozy mysteries. The rainy cold weather makes it perfect to read them! sooooo I should be reading and putting those books I bought into my catalog. How’s everyone else for the Sunday Salon?
I believe I’ve heard of this book from some of those newsletters I have subscribed to from publishers. I always read them as sometimes I find something I might like and might want to read in the near future. This one caught my attention and I decided to give it a try.
City of Thieves by David Benioff takes place in World War II Russia during the seige of Leningrad. Here you read the story of Lev, a young boy who gets caught looting a corpse of a German soldier, and of Kolya a Russian army “deserter”. They both get saved from certain death in prison by a powerful Soviet colonel who asks them an impossible task: to find a dozen eggs to make a cake for his daughter’s wedding. Impossible? yes there’s hardly any food in the city. Rations are slim and many people are resorting to very drastic measures to get food. To avoid failure (meaning death if they fail), they go on a journey to look for these eggs.
This book has all the makings of a coming of age historical foreign movie (makes sense, the author is also a screenwriter). I can actually picture the movie in my head and watching it. It’s something I would watch. It’s both funny yet certain parts remind me of the horrors of war still thriving within the city. The story is told in the point of view of Lev who’s young and stays behind while his mother and sister move away from the city. His father, is most likely dead, as he gets arrested and is never seen again. When he meets Kolya, the charming deserter who seems to have a tale for everything and has to say something every waking moment, they make a comical duo. Lev is very surly at first and is annoyed frequently by Kolya, who doesn’t really care what he thinks of him and keeps on going with his little quirks and stories of his various romantic conquests and how he hasn’t gone to the bathroom in a very long time.
I liked this book because of its’ interesting mix of comedy and drama set in a rather serious and sombre setting. Come to think of it, I haven’t even read a book set in World War II where there is comedy in it. In fact I think it’s quite a rarity, yet this kind of rarity, and written and executed well, makes it a rare gem. I have to admit, I liked Kolya from the start. You could tell he was the comic relief of the duo here. He provided the light hearted side of the story and actually had very funny and interesting things to say. It was hard to like Lev. I don’t know what to make of him. Surly, hard to like, easily angered (really all the makings of an angsty teenager) although on the other hand, he knew how to survive on the streets which had made him mature faster while Kolya was more of the child of this twosome. However towards the end of the book where Lev actually does grow up both mentally and physically, I started to rather respect him more as his character developed.
As you read through their journey, you start to see their relationship develop and it becomes even brotherly, as Lev asks Kolya for some tips when it comes to romancing the ladies (and other “sports”). Although Lev sort of begrudgingly and even is embarassed by asking him, Kolya acts like a father figure, an elder brother, and a personal friend to Lev (although sometimes it’s more like an annoying friend you never asked for) which makes the relationship funny, but also at the same time, very personal because of the various events they went through both life threatening and yet comical. Believe me, those comical parts actually had me laughing out loud at times, the dramatic parts are just that and there’s a good balance between the two so you won’t be bored reading this novel.
The things I didn’t like about this book? well for starters, there were some very graphic and gruesome parts that aren’t for the squeamish and some parts even made me squirm uncomfortably. Lev rather annoyed me because he wouldn’t stop thinking as how Vika would look naked (and those moments increased towards the end of the book) it got annoying and stagnant. One other criticism, what happened to Kolya was rather predictable in the end. I figured that out at least before halfway of the novel. (Which is why I said it had all the makings of a great foreign movie).
Despite these faults, I enjoyed reading the book and following these two on their dangerous journey to find eggs. The whole finding eggs bit does make it comical but on the other hand it’s mixed so well with the horrors of war that you’re left being reminded that it’s still there, but that it’s okay to sometimes laugh once in a while even when the situation is very bleak. Besides, you have nothing to lose when you’re starving, and you’re always reminded of death everywhere you turn. Overall a good read if you can get past the graphic parts.
I give it a 7 out of 10.