Posts Tagged ‘Books’
As cofounder of Joy Division, Peter Hook was the inspiration behind a band that would shape the course of popular music. He provided the propulsive bass guitar melodies of “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” and was at the heart of the sound that came to define an era and inspire a generation. Here he tells the story of that time: of the music, the madness, the band members, and the other characters on the scene that made it the unforgettable, iconic time it was. He talks with eye-opening candor and reflection about the suicide of Ian Curtis—often seen as the “intellectual one—to Peter and the band he was just “one of the lads,” and the burden of balancing his epilepsy and the demands of his domestic life only really emerged when it was too late. Peter covers the band’s friendships and fallouts; their rehearsals and recording sessions; and the larger-than-life characters who formed a vital part of the Joy Division story. (From Amazon.ca)
Okay. Two reasons why I requested this book for review. 1. The hombre loves Joy Division. and 2. I wanted to know more about the band. Now I’m not a fan. Yes, I listen to a few of the songs when the hombre plays them (I must say, he still has the CD set of Heart and Soul that I bought him as a gift years ago – which makes me all warm and fuzzy because I got him something that he loves and still listens to..anyway! I’m going off topic here….)
I thought the book was pretty good – now I completely understand a fan would greatly appreciate this book as it gives you an insight on how the band was. I liked the way it was written, it was to the point, and at some times really blunt. I found myself laughing at bits of it. Gradually as the book progresses though, it does get more serious and more sad – since you know what’s going to happen to Ian Curtis and although he was undergoing serious health issues they just kept going. It’s admirable because they went through a lot of struggle in the beginning, but they persisted (it’s also extremely difficult to be successful as a rock band as I learnt while reading through this book)
The book also includes a more detailed description on each track the band has made which I believe fans will greatly appreciate and lots of references to other bands they have met, toured with, and sometimes fought with (hah, those were funny parts). It was also interesting to see how Hook describes Ian Curtis during their tour stops. (He can be just one of the guys too – which was hard for me to see) You also had to sympathize for him and his struggle with epilepsy. Hook’s narrative is very good and easy to follow and above all very entertaining.
Fans will greatly appreciate this book, non fans wanting to read how a real (yes I say REAL) band works should pick this up to get a glimpse at how hard it really is (no seriously, it’s really hard and not as easy as you think!) also, nice small appearances from The Cure and Bono!!!!
I give it a 9 out of 10
Thanks to the publisher for the review copy of this book! it’s in the hands of the hombre now along with all his Joy Division goodies
It’s very well written, and although the plot is a little slow to start off, I think it’s essential for it to go at that pace. It introduces the reader to a detailed world with a good amount of characters to read about. The sisters in the book are distinct enough so the reader can figure out who is who. Some of their personalities are stronger and more memorable than others (Bramble comes to mind). There’s real well placed moments of humor throughout the book and you do find yourself laughing here and there. The more fantastical and magical elements of the book are also well done, especially towards the ending where the pace of the book goes at whirlwind speed and keeps the reader engaged well until the last pages.
The character of the Keeper is also well written. As the book progresses his sinister side comes out and it does get a little, well creepy. It suits the story and the setting (where the Princesses go to dance). The setting itself does seem marvelous and beautiful but there’s a coldness and detachment to it – which is a very likely home for the Keeper himself as his personality also is a reflection to the setting.
The ‘couples’ of the book are well done and they suited each other.
It’s another retelling of Twelve Dancing Princesses but I feel that it’s much more than that. It’s well detailed, and despite it’s length, it’s a beautifully written story where when you’re done with the book, you feel satisfied, and complete. Definitely recommended for those in love with young adult books, fairy tales and the retelling of them, but also those that like fantasy stories without intense descriptions of magic.
9 out of 10.
When every bit of human magic disappears suddenly from Vastia, it falls on the familiars—Aldwyn the telekinetic cat, Skylar the know-it-all blue jay, and Gilbert the gullible tree frog—to find the Crown of the Snow Leopard, an ancient relic that can reverse the curse. They learn that the only way to do this is by following in the paw prints of Aldwyn’s missing father, who went searching for the Crown several years earlier. This magical spirit trail extends into the Beyond, where our heroes encounter new enemies and danger, while Aldwyn learns about his mysterious past. (From Amazon.ca)
I’m so glad this series just keeps getting better! I’ve really enjoyed the first one, but this one is even better!
It’s still an adventure, and it’s certainly more focused on Aldwyn and his friends. It’s certainly more focused on Aldwyn and his past, and provides a little more on the background information to make the world building more comprehensible and easy to picture.
I’m also glad to see Gilbert still hasn’t lost his touch on being the funny one of the group. I was also surprised that Skylar is still a know it all but she’s not as annoying and has turned out to be more friendly and supportive. I still love Aldwyn and he will always be my favorite.
The plot is still just as good, I liked the riddle/puzzle element to it, it’s reminiscent of the Redwall books (they’re always filled with those) but with a much more adventure flavor to it. The thing I like about this is the writing style of the plot. It’s easy to picture, and if possible, could very well be made into an animated feature film. The illustrations provided are also fun to look at and is a great addition for younger aged readers.
I’m looking forward to the next book in this series and can’t wait to see what happens to them next! most definitely recommended to Middle Grade readers, but all ages will have fun reading this one.
Note:It’s best if you read the first before this one.
I give it a 10/10
Crime lives–and dies–in the deceptively picture-perfect town of Port Gamble (aka “Empty Coffin”), Washington. Evil lurks and strange things happen–and 15-year-olds Hayley and Taylor Ryan secretly use their wits and their telepathic “twin-sense” to uncover the truth about the town’s victims and culprits. Envy, the series debut, involves the mysterious death of the twins’ old friend, Katelyn. Was it murder? Suicide? An accident? Hayley and Taylor are determined to find out–and as they investigate, they stumble upon a dark truth that is far more disturbing than they ever could have imagined. (From Amazon.ca)
I really tried to like this novel. The cover got me all curious. Yet it wasn’t what I thought it was. I thought there was going to be more of a paranormal feel to it, but it’s limited to mostly the twins having their telepathic abilities. I rather liked the history behind the two girls that was actually the more interesting part of the book. The mystery part of the book wasn’t that great. It sure had all the makings of an intriguing mystery, it even got me hooked and I kept trying to guess who was behind it. Yet the ending was just so anti climactic and I felt almost as if I was cheated out of a good ending (and suddenly feeling the urge to demand a refund of my time back). So when you find out who did it and what really happened, it was pretty much bland.
The characters were okay. The twins were your typical gifted, overachieving, strikingly beautiful people to ever walk the earth with paranormal powers. Nothing new there and they were like made out of a cookie cutter style. None of the characters really stood out to me, and I think this, with the combination of rather dry writing, and a slow pace of the plot, I didn’t really enjoy the novel. It was disappointing, since I was looking forward to reading this, and I thought it certainly had the potential to be interesting.
I am still not sure if I’m going to read the second one of this book. It’ll have to be spectacular and exciting enough for me to read. It is the first book of a series, and sometimes they’re off to a rocky start so who knows what the second one will have. Not going to recommend this to anyone but if you are curious, I say take it or leave it.
I give it a 5/10
Raylene Pendle (AKA Cheshire Red), a vampire and world-renowned thief, doesn’t usually hang with her own kind. She’s too busy stealing priceless art and rare jewels. But when the infuriatingly charming Ian Stott asks for help, Raylene finds him impossible to resist—even though Ian doesn’t want precious artifacts. He wants her to retrieve missing government files—documents that deal with the secret biological experiments that left Ian blind. What Raylene doesn’t bargain for is a case that takes her from the wilds of Minneapolis to the mean streets of Atlanta. And with a psychotic, power-hungry scientist on her trail, a kick-ass drag queen on her side, and Men in Black popping up at the most inconvenient moments, the case proves to be one hell of a ride. (From Amazon.ca)
I’m always very cautious when I pick up an urban fantasy book. For two reasons: 1. I’m not a romance reader, so the moment I see a paranormal/urban fantasy with romance and unexplainable feelings stirring from the loins because there’s a character with bestial urges and dangerous animal/pheromone attractiveness, it makes me roll my eyes and go for the next book on the list. 2. Inter species fluid swapping makes me cringe. Enough about this I am going off subject…
I am very pleased to say, this book has NONE of the things I was not looking for in this type of book. Actually, in fact, I was pleased with this book overall. I loved the writing style, and what grabbed me after a couple of chapters is Raylene herself.
Raylene is a character so well written, and so filled with wit and charm you can’t help but like her. She’s got an attitude, and her insults are beyond hilarious not to mention, her narration of the story is what really keeps the plot going and interesting. I’m not sure who you would compare her to, as my experience reading in this genre is somewhat limited, but I’d have to say her wit and insults got me laughing out loud at times. Her snide side comments also provide for much of the comic humor that goes on throughout this book.
That is not to say this book is in anyway a light hearted read. The real plot itself is dark and the overall setting and some of the characters are oily, seedy, and awful. So there is a balance between action and humor here that makes the reading certainly ‘feel’ light even though the subject isn’t close to that. What I thought was fun was Raylene seems to attract a small group of followers and she has no choice to accept them. I thought the two orphans showed the ‘softer’ side of Raylene (does she really have one though? maybe!) and the other two followers show potential romances (maybe? although her choice at the end rather surprised me).
The book overall was really good and I had fun reading this. There were moments where the action was so fast paced and almost movie quality reading, and then there’s comedy moments where I found myself laughing out loud. I’m really looking forward to reading Hellbent, the next book that comes after this one. Greatly recommended for urban fantasy fans.
I give it a 9/10
On her sixteenth birthday, Anastasija Parker learns that her so-called deadbeat dad is actually a vampire king. And he wants Ana to assume her rightful position at his side, in spite of the fact that she has witch’s blood running through her veins-from her mother’s side. Too bad witches and vampires are mortal enemies. And now Ana’s parents are at each other’s throats over her future. It’s up to Ana to make a choice, but deciding your eternal destiny is a pretty big deal for a girl who just wants to get through high school. (From Amazon.ca)
For such a short book, it was a great read! it take an idea that’s not quite new, and puts a new spin on it. The writing in the book is quick and fun to read. The characters were also quite memorable and extremely likable.
The magic part of the book was simple, yet satisfying. It was fun to read Bea do her little spells with a simple “zap”. Plus, it was fun to see the magic at work. The plot itself was really good and easy to follow. Ana has wit, and her thoughts are extremely entertaining and funny to read. Naturally, in nearly all YA’s out there, there is a love triangle in the making, but it’s not cheesy or overdone. Both Nikolai and Elias are likable in their own way although I’d have to say, I’m leaning towards Elias a lot more.
I’ve read one other of Hallaway’s books and enjoyed it as well, so I’m going to continue reading this series. It’s enjoyable and a fun light read without any overbearing cliches and cheesiness. Give this one a try if you’re into paranormal YA and want something quick between long epic reads.
I give it an 8 out of 10.
Emma Smallwood, determined to help her widowed father regain his spirits when his academy fails, agrees to travel with him to the distant Cornwall coast, to the cliff-top manor of a baronet and his four sons. But after they arrive and begin teaching the younger boys, mysterious things begin to happen and danger mounts. Who does Emma hear playing the pianoforte, only to find the music room empty? Who sneaks into her room at night? Who rips a page from her journal, only to return it with a chilling illustration? The baronet’s older sons, Phillip and Henry, wrestle with problems–and secrets–of their own. They both remember Emma Smallwood from their days at her father’s academy. She had been an awkward, studious girl. But now one of them finds himself unexpectedly drawn to her. When the suspicious acts escalate, can the clever tutor’s daughter figure out which brother to blame… and which brother to trust with her heart? (From Goodreads)
I thought this was enjoyable to read. It reminded me a lot of Jayne Eyre (sans an eccentric Mr Rochester) as it had a lot of similar qualities in the book. It certainly does have a Gothic element to it which adds more to the mystery and gives the story a bit of a dark theme to it.
Emma is quite a lovely character to read about. She’s certainly very bookish, but has the patience of a saint to deal with students (such as Henry – who was quite odious as Emma had described during her past with him) (he still remained so…although I’m the type to bear a grudge sometimes so I wouldn’t be so forgivable..Emma can be just too nice in my opinion). I’m not too sure what Emma really saw in Phillip. I didn’t find him the least bit likable. Charming yes. However it’s like a wallflower having a crush on the most popular guy in school role. The moment he opens his mouth he just doesn’t become that Adonis you’ve always thought of. So I’m not really sure what Emma saw in him. He wasn’t that great (neither was Henry but at least Henry had a level head on his shoulders)
I’m not sure what I think of Lizzie. She’s the type where you have to be her friend because she’s the only one around who will talk to you but you don’t really want to hang out with because you just simply can’t trust her….
The plot itself was really good although the urge to kick Lady Weston every so often was there throughout the entire book (argh she was awful) the mystery element of the book was good and interesting. The romance element is nice as well and the pace of the book was steady and even.
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this book and will continue reading more of Julie Klaasen (I’ve read Maid of Fairbourne Hall – which I enjoyed as well). If you haven’t checked any of her books out, I highly suggest you do so for some very enjoyable reading with well done characters.
I give it a 9 out of 10.
“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.
What stood out for me the most about this book was the writing. It was very well done. The sights, the smells, and the general feeling throughout the plot was certainly felt. I loved the mood and atmosphere that was set for this story. The whole mystery mixed with some paranormal characteristics was good although I was wrong as to how Lillian died. I certainly wasn’t expecting what she died from. But then, that would be pretty typical right?
The story does sort of try to not become a typical plot you would find in most of these types of novels although when it came to the end it basically boiled down to an ending that you would have expected – but as I have mentioned earlier, what stood out for me was the writing style of the book. Although it may have left you wanting more out of the plot, you can’t dismiss the unique writing style and how well done it was. The ending had a mini twist, but it offered closure and closed all the loose ends nicely.
As for Hannah as a character, I didn’t dislike her or like her. It certainly did feel that Lillian and Hannah were two halves of one person and one without the other would be just an empty shell. You certainly did feel sorry for Lillian and what she went through. As for the romance factor in the story. It was all right. Certainly, it’s typical (bad boy and good girl couple) but they seemed to be fit for each other quite nicely.
Although I thought book was pretty decent, it left me wanting for something more. Also, the plot was a bit slow to go through and the pace could have been a bit quicker. Otherwise it’s a decent read and worth a try at least once, just to get the feel of Yovanoff’s writing style, which was excellent.
I give it a 6 out of 10.
Thank you Razorbill for providing me a review copy!
It helps a bit of you’ve read Jane Eyre. But even if you haven’t, this might peak your curiosity so you can actually get your hands on the original classic and read it! for those that have read Jane Eyre, it’s nice to compare between the two. I personally thought this was a great modern retelling of the original book. You’ll see Lindner does a fantastic job of trying to stay as close to the original as she could, but adding a few bits here and there to make it different (and still readable without destroying the original).
I couldn’t help but feel so sorry for Jayne throughout the book she really does create this aura of helplessness about her and it’s hard not to sympathize with her. Thing is though, I thought she was just a little too bland and boring, and not much of a personality came from her. Nico on the other hand was super intense! I loved his character!!! it was such a great idea to make him a secluded rock star with a not so great past! it was very well done! he’s got all the qualities of a dark brooding rock star you can’t help but swoon over that! however I didn’t care for his pity trip at the end of the book. Meh. Mr Rochester didn’t get that whiny in the original…..
The writing in the book was also really good, the length may be daunting to some, and it may take a bit to read through it but you’ll realize it’s most definitely worth the time to read. The heartbreaking moments are just that – super heartbreaking you can most certainly feel (it’s one of those books that could tear you apart emotionally). Which just goes to show how well written it is.
Most definitely recommended to YA readers, and if you haven’t picked up the original classic Jane Eyre yet, do so! so you’ll know at least where this brilliant retelling came from
I give it a 9/10
Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. The Wrecker civilization has long been destroyed, leaving only landfills for Saba and her family to scavenge from. That’s fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother Lugh is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives, along with four cloaked horsemen, Saba’s world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on an epic quest to get him back. Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside of desolate Silverlake, Saba is lost without Lugh to guide her. So perhaps the most surprising thing of all is what Saba learns about herself: she’s a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. And she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization. (From Goodreads)
I had trouble with finding a good book in the Dystopian genre that was on par with The Hunger Games. I thought to myself, nothing will be able to compare. I finally found its’ match. It’s this one. For sure. People who ask for other books like Hunger Games, I yell out Blood Red Road and nothing else.
Remember Mad Max? well the world is something like this. Dry, desert, hot. Blazing hot. The setting was so descriptive and rich you can feel the heat, the sweat, and the dryness. It sure seems like a very desolate lonely world, but the world building is wonderful and so rich and detailed. It’s a perfect setting for this type of novel and it’s extremely well done.
I loved Saba. She’s tough, she’s gritty, she’s not afraid to get dirty and to fight tooth and nail to get to Lugh. She treats her little sister like dirt, and yes I did find the little kid annoying, I would have hated to be in her shoes if she ever got Saba angry. But, you have to give credit to Emmi, she does talk back. As the story progresses, Emmi does grow on me and she’s definitely got the same strength Saba’s got. I love the bantering between Jack and Saba. There was chemistry there and with Saba’s bad temper it just made their interactions absolutely fun to read at times. The characters overall in this book were excellent. There was nothing to dislike! I also loved the Free Hawks. It was just awesome reading a girl gang who are able to survive on their own!
The action scenes are also really good (there’s worm like creatures! it’s like the sandworms from Dune except evil and really really aggressive!!! I squeed when I read this part!) the entire plot of this book was engaging, interesting and could not stop you from reading. It was literally, a page turner.
The only thing I had an issue with is Saba’s narration. It’s different, and took me a few tries to follow but you do get used to it as you read through the story.
Other than that, fans of the Hunger Games would LOVE THIS! and SHOULD READ THIS! drop everything else and give this one a try. It’s one of the best dystopian books I’ve read that definitely should share the pedestal that the Hunger Games is on.
I give it a 10 out of 10