Okbo Lover

One more page, one more chapter, one more book!

Archive for December 2010

Review of Stolen by Vivian Vande Velde

with 2 comments

Stolen

Stolen

The same day that the villagers of Thornstowe finally hunt down a witch with a reputation for stealing children, a 12-year-old appears in the woods with no memory of her past. Is there a connection between Isabelle, the girl who doesn’t know who she is, and the girl the witch stole six years earlier? One of the few things Isabelle remembers is a chant that keeps running through her head:

Old as dirt,

dirty as dirt.

Ugly as sin,

mean as sin.

Don’t let the old witch catch you!

Could Isabelle have been stolen by the old witch of the woods, or has she lost her memory as the result of an accident? And what about the baby the witch stole right before the villagers attacked? Did either the witch or the baby survive the fire the villagers set?

I thought this book was good! I was expecting something different the book to be with more paranormal qualities. The cover was a bit deceiving in that aspect. However! I think the book is still worth the read!

The plot has all the makings of a great fairy tale and there is a good amount of mystery and intrigue to keep you guessing. There is a neat little twist in the end of the book which I wasn’t expecting and I enjoyed the ending.

The characters are all right and Honey happens to be a downright dirty villain. She wasn’t such a nice person to begin with anyway but what she reveals just makes her look awful and nasty. I’d have to say most of the characters have the making of a fairy tale, not one of the “classic” ones. It’ll be a tale similar to the ones in the Grimm’s fairy tales. It’s darker, and the violent content is there, but enough to not make it overwhelming.

Pick this book up for a quick light read, the story is good and will keep you guessing until the end. It’s a perfect book for all ages. Don’t let the cover fool you and if it’s not what you expect, keep reading it anyway. You’ll find it’s worth the time.

I give it a 9 out of 10.

 

Written by Karoline

December 18, 2010 at 9:52 pm

Book Blogger Hop 12/17

with 5 comments

Book Blogger Hop

 

Today’s question:  “What do you consider the most important in a story: the plot or the characters?”

– It’s a combination of both but I would go for plot first. If the plot does not interest me, I don’t think the characters would really save the story (unless they were REALLY good). However, sometimes I’ve come across books where the characters are great but the story isn’t so good. There has to be a good balance between the two to have a really good book. Yet without a good plot, the interest isn’t there, and the story wouldn’t even be read in the first place.

So that’s my answer! what’s yours?

hi if you’re from the Hop! leave a comment and have some xmas cookies 🙂 enjoy!

Written by Karoline

December 16, 2010 at 10:09 pm

Posted in Book Blogger Hop, Meme

Tagged with ,

Review of Ophelia by Lisa Klein

with 4 comments

Ophelia

Ophelia

As a teen, I read Shakespeare. For FUN. I loved his plays and even watched a lot of movies based on them. Of all the plays he wrote, Hamlet was my absolute favorite one. So when I found out about this book I had to take it out of the library. I thought it would be interesting to see it from different character’s point of view.

In this re-imagining of Shakespeare”s famous tragedy, it is Ophelia who takes center stage. A rowdy, motherless girl, she grows up at Elsinore Castle to become the queen’s most trusted lady-in-waiting. She catches the attention of the captivating, dark-haired Prince Hamlet, and their love blossoms in secret. But bloody deeds soon turn Denmark into a place of madness, and ultimately, Ophelia must choose between her love for Hamlet and her own life. (Taken from Chapters Indigo. Parts were cut off as I thought it revealed too much of the plot.)

When I first started reading this book I loved it. The chemistry between Hamlet and Ophelia was there and it was definitely interesting. It’s a total different take on the play and an interesting view on the characters within. It was interesting how background information is provided (as how Ophelia and Hamlet met for the first time) and how they spent their childhood years. So although it does deviate from the original play it’s not so much or goes too far out of context. For a while at least.

The parts with Ophelia and Hamlet in love are well done. As mentioned before the chemistry is there and Hamlet stays true as there is definitely emotion and passion. I do have a problem with Ophelia later on. She becomes needy and really clingy. It got annoying and although there’s lots of miscommunication between her and Hamlet, all she really had to do was ask him what the problem was instead of whining about it constantly and forgetting about it when he started to “act” normal. Hamlet did sort of reveal his agenda to Ophelia, but perhaps he didn’t spell it out for her and she just assumed Hamlet stopped loving her altogether. For crying out loud Ophelia. You were raised like a tomboy and that sort of thing affected you when you could have just approached Hamlet and even punched him if you wanted to? That kind of contrast was a little too outrageous for me. I found Laertes different. I never really expected him to be quite the jerk portrayed in the book and always thought of him as an older brother who was protective towards Ophelia. I thought that was a little skewed.

So, I have to say, the first half of the book was good. Despite some character flaws with Ophelia. The little twist with her finding out who really murdered the King was good, and her relationship with Gertrude proved interesting as well. However Gertrude also got moody, and whiny. It was as if the female characters just suddenly developed a syndrome to become this way all throughout the novel. Of all the characters in the book though, I really liked Horatio, he seems to be the only character that stays constant and true throughout the entire book without the severe personality changes.

Now we get to the last half. I can’t believe I actually went through with it too. I admit the alternate ending to Ophelia’s fate was rather interesting but the story just went to a halt and started to crawl. There were pages and pages of Ophelia’s time at a convent which did nothing to advance to plot and had me baffled as to wondering where this was going. It was borderline preachy as Ophelia tries to “find” herself while her time at the convent. I didn’t care for this part. In fact I skimmed through most of it because it was extremely boring. I actually skimmed the last 50 or so pages until the very last few to see the outcome of Ophelia. I rather figured it would end up that way, as the book slightly hinted at it. It was satisfactory, but reading dozens of boring pages isn’t worth it. Also the theme of revenge is just so overdone in this book. Sure, it’s the main theme, but it’s just so overplayed and over exaggerated it makes the emotion fake.

So, would I recommend this? yes, and no. Yes, if you’re not a Shakespeare fan. You might just enjoy it. No if you’re a very perfectionist type and love Shakespeare. Like me you’d probably wonder  who is this whiny girl (who is also a tomboy) and what has she done to Ophelia. Also, the last half of the book might just put you off of the whole thing. It’s very frustrating and unfortunate as it has good potential but just fell apart. It could have definitely been better.

I give it a 4 out of 10.

Written by Karoline

December 14, 2010 at 7:40 pm

Posted in 4, Reading Challenges, Review

Tagged with , ,

Book Blogger Hop 12/10

with 5 comments

Book Blogger Hop

 

Today’s Question is:

“What is the thing you like most about reading book blogs?  Is it the reviews, author guest posts, articles, giveaways, or something else entirely?”

 

– I love reading about books that I haven’t read or heard about. Also, I like to read reviews on books I’ve already read to see if maybe they had a different opinion or if they shared the same views I had. I used to like the giveaways, but attempting to enter them has become such a chore that I opt out of them unless they’re simple and easy to do. (Whatever happened to the ones where all you had to do was post a comment?! those are a rarity now)

Anyway! I have some lovely lemon cookies, some pistachio cookies, and walnut cookies to go around. Have fun and happy hopping and thanks for stopping by!

Written by Karoline

December 10, 2010 at 10:11 am

Posted in Book Blogger Hop, Meme

Tagged with ,

Review of Horns

with 2 comments

Horns

Horns

I heard about this novel from Shelf Awareness, and other book blogs out there. It certainly got me curious, despite the mixed reviews. So I gave it a chance and decided to give it a go.

At first Ig thought the horns were a hallucination, the product of a mind damaged by rage and grief. He had spent the last year in a lonely, private purgatory, following the death of his beloved, Merrin Williams, who was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances. A mental breakdown would have been the most natural thing in the world. But there was nothing natural about the horns, which were all too real. Once the righteous Ig had enjoyed the life of the blessed: born into privilege, the second son of a renowned musician and younger brother of a rising late-night TV star, he had security, wealth, and a place in his community. Ig had it all, and more—he had Merrin and a love founded on shared daydreams, mutual daring, and unlikely midsummer magic. But Merrin’s death damned all that. The only suspect in the crime, Ig was never charged or tried. And he was never cleared. In the court of public opinion in Gideon, New Hampshire, Ig is and always will be guilty because his rich and connected parents pulled strings to make the investigation go away. Nothing Ig can do, nothing he can say, matters. Everyone, it seems, including God, has abandoned him. Everyone, that is, but the devil inside. . . . Now Ig is possessed of a terrible new power to go with his terrible new look—a macabre talent he intends to use to find the monster who killed Merrin and destroyed his life. Being good and praying for the best got him nowhere. It’s time for a little revenge. . . (From Amazon.ca)

This book definitely had a very different and interesting concept. What I did not expect was the comedy that went along with it. Ig’s new found power (which took me a bit to figure out what it was) is an interesting gift, and could potentially be either; very dangerous, hurtful, or downright hilarious. Throughout the first bits of the book I couldn’t stop laughing. The moments of Ig’s childhood years (the shopping cart incident) and the situation with the two policemen made me laugh, and kept me reading the book. Yet there were serious moments too, with Ig finding out the truth about Merrin and her death, who was really behind it, and the real true feelings of people close to him (like his parents). It’s a bit shocking, to read how his parents really felt of the situation surrounding Ig and at a certain point of the book I really felt sorry for him.

The first half of the book was really enjoyable to read. The middle part where it focuses on Ig, Merrin, and Lee wasn’t so bad. Lee’s a jerk. A real jealous one. I never really liked him to begin with and when you see his true colors, I hated him even more. Ig was such a nice guy and Lee just took advantage of that and stepped all over him. I liked Ig as a character although throughout the second half of the book he just got really strange and started behaving rather odd. This is where I thought the book was rather stuck in a rut and it suddenly dragged. I felt the pace of the book just stopped all of a sudden and started to crawl.

The ending was good and after that rut, the pace starting picking up a bit. I was definitely unprepared for the ending and it caught me by surprise. When I finished this book,  I wasn’t sure how I felt. I had an empty feeling, I guess because the ending wasn’t what I expected, but also because I thought perhaps it could have ended differently. For a book that had such a promising start, the ending lacked the punch to finish it.

I would still say, give this book a chance. The idea and concept is really entertaining and interesting. If you don’t mind reading through the little stall in the middle of the book you’ll find the book isn’t so bad after all. Even though to me, it had a disappointing ending, but read it to be entertained and to have a laugh. It’s certainly worth a look through.

I give it a 7 out of 10.

Written by Karoline

December 7, 2010 at 7:11 pm

Posted in 7, Reading Challenges, Review

Tagged with , ,

Book Blogger Hop 12/3

with 9 comments

Book Blogger Hop

 

Today’s question is:  “What very popular and hyped book in the blogosphere did you NOT enjoy and how did you feel about posting your review?”

– Let’s see here (pulls out Mary Poppins file cabinet to see). I didn’t enjoy Paranormalcy as much as everyone else did. I’m not sure why, perhaps the main character didn’t really get to me. (Actually she got to me in a rather negative sense). I didn’t feel anything about posting my review because that’s what it is. A review. It’s just my opinion. I shouldn’t have to feel bad for posting something that did not fall with how the majority of the book blogging world felt. In fact, I will never understand how people always ask about posting negative reviews. Why should you feel bad about posting something negative when it’s your HONEST opinion???? naturally, there’s bound to be people (and authors) that may disagree with you, but if everybody agreed with everything, the world would certainly be a boring place wouldn’t it? (stop me before I go on my soapbox about this..)

– Another book, which doesn’t really count because I read it before I started a book blog. Yet everyone still raves about , is The Historian. I will never ever ever ever EVER understand why everyone raves and continues to rave about this book. I actually read it from cover to cover and regretted it. It’s one of the few times where if I could, I would ask for a refund of my time wasted on reading this novel. Actually! it’s thanks to this novel where I came to the point where if I don’t like a book past a certain number of pages I’ll drop it instantly.

So! what does everyone else think? if you’re from the Hop, hello! drop by! I’m making early Christmas cookies and need a few willing people to try them 🙂

Written by Karoline

December 2, 2010 at 10:24 pm

Posted in Book Blogger Hop, Meme

Tagged with ,