6 Following


The Fault in Our Stars - John Green I thought this was an incredible story but that being said, I can't say I enjoyed reading it. Hazel makes an original and interesting heroine and I think Green tackled adolescent cancer with a brutal and refreshing honesty. Hazel and Augustus had a realistic relationship that was quirky and fun to read about but even though I cried through the whole latter part of the book, I never really connected with Augustus as a character. There was just something missing about him I can't really put my finger on.
Sick Puppy - Carl Hiaasen Intriguing and very well executed. This gave me a lot to think about.
Forgotten: A Novel - Catherine McKenzie This premise was really good, I was fascinated but the book went downhill pretty quickly. The character development was weak and ending wrapped everything up into annoyingly perfect little bows.
Dash & Lily's Book of Dares - Rachel Cohn, David Levithan This was a lovely story, that really encapsulated some of the best of New York City. Refreshing and incredibly witty.
The Paris Wife - Paula McLain I was very disappointed by The Paris Wife as I found it incredibly dull. I expected a great deal more from Hadley's perspective but I quickly grew tired of listening to her yammer on about how bored she was as Ernest went off and wrote and she stayed home. I don't understand how this novel has become so popular.
This World We Live In - Susan Beth Pfeffer I was very glad to see this book from Miranda's perspective again, I really don't like Alex very much and I can't fathom why Miranda does either. These books were much better when they were about family and survival and didn't include the romance. Not only is Alex not very likable, but their whole relationship is incredibly rushed and underdeveloped.

The religious exploration made sense to me when the book was from Alex's perspective but it didn't work here with this blended set of characters nearly as well and became over done quite quickly.

There were some really excellent parts of this book, I think Pfeffer has constructed an incredibly dark and gritty but a believable situation for the most part. However, it just didn't live up to the first one. I still enjoyed it, and Miranda's moral conundrum was good food for thought but it just wasn't as good, thematically or otherwise.
The Dead and the Gone - Susan Beth Pfeffer This sequel was strong but it wasn't as good as the first book of the series. I really liked the religious exploration this one took but I didn't like the story as much. Both the books in the series so far have ended abruptly and I was really looking forward to more of Miranda's story. I'm glad to see the next book will pick up with her.
Life As We Knew It - Susan Beth Pfeffer I loved this story, it was a beautiful exploration of human frailty told in the eyes of a sixteen year old girl. Pfeffer did an excellent job maintaining the voice of a sixteen year old in a realistic fashion but still managed to keep the story and the plot interesting. Miranda's character shows a great deal of depth and development, as does her family. It's incredibly refreshing to read a young adult novel with significant and interesting themes that does not rely on a romance. I'm looking forward to the sequel.
Every Day - David Levithan This was a lovely book, a breath of fresh air really. It really explored the limits of love and acceptance and gender fluidity in a unique way that really opened up my mind.
A Discovery of Witches - Deborah Harkness What I expected: A fun historical fiction novel about witches. Perhaps similar to The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane
What I got: A romance novel about a witch who falls in love with a vampire.
Yeah I've essentially already read that book, thank you. Seen the movie. Watched the tv show. I'm over it...mostly.
Hollowland - Amanda Hocking Another free Kindle book that I was very pleasantly surprised by. Is it plausible? No. But isn't that why we read fiction to begin with?

Remy makes a heroine who is equal parts brave and vulnerable. She's no Katniss, but she's honest and she's tough.

I am aware the pet lion might have strayed a bit on the side of over the top but Ripley was an entertaining and lovable touch to the story.

As far as the love interest goes the dynamic could have been better but I've read much, much worse. While Lazlo wasn't particularly dynamic, he was likable, he didn't act like a complete caveman, and he didn't piss me off constantly so I appreciated that.

The way this novel is written is certainly not for everyone, Hocking takes a very expository stance in the way she writes but I found I much prefer to it to the incessant emotional gushing some young adult authors have a tendency to do. In a way, it kind of makes sense as Remy is emotionally closed off.

All in all it wasn't a perfect book but I really enjoyed reading it and that's what matters to me.
Relatively Famous - Jessica Park This book is a cheesy made for TV movie just waiting to happen.
Borrowed Dreams - May McGoldrick This was one of those free Kindle books that I started reading to just to see if it would be any good and I was pleasantly surprised. Historically I think there are quite a few errors but it was a solid story with an interesting plot and characters whose lives and story I found myself emotionally invested in. The story certainly involves romance but there is more to it than just the love story which I found incredibly refreshing. Certainly far from a serious novel but a fun read none the less.
The Morganville Vampires, #1-8 - Rachel Caine To be fair, I'm probably too old for these books and I didn't have particularly high expectations for them but I thought I would give it a go. The plots were actually pretty interesting, I found myself caught up in the story, but I just couldn't get into the characters. Claire was just a really blah and boring main character. I don't really have any issues with her actions or anything, she was just really dull, as was her love interest Shane.
The most interesting characters were the vampires who were sort of regulated to the sidelines, I would have been much more interested in this book had it been written from Amelie's perspective or even Eve or Michael's. I made it through book five before I just got too bored and decided to read something else.
Spoils of War: World War II & Its Aftermath: The Loss, Reappearance, & Recovery of Cultural Property - Elizabeth Simpson (ed) The Spoils of War is an excellent resource for examining the aftermath of WWII and cultural property. However, it is largely centered around issues concerning Eastern Europe and thus was not as helpful to my dissertation work as I had hoped.
Fifty Shades of Grey - E.L. James I read this book so I could honestly have an argument as to why it is so terrible. My expectations were exceeded in some ways and not in others. The writing was not as bad as I thought it would be although I would dearly like to punch Ana's constantly irritating little"inner goddess" in the face. If you're looking for a plot there isn't really much of one, it's just them having sex. As for the characters, Ana is nothing short of pathetic and irritating, I don't understand how anyone could be THAT naive unless they were raised in a convent. Christian is aggravating and borderline abusive, I don't really go for the caveman thing so I don't really understand the attraction. He basically fulfills every romance novel stereotype, hot, rich, controlling, boring, but at least he isn't a vampire. In fact he makes Edward Cullen look like a great boyfriend which is scary in itself.
It's not really the sex I take an issue with so much as the lifestyle that goes along with it. What happens in the bedroom is one thing but the stalking and the controlling and the telling her what to do? That's another thing. I know that everyone is a legally consenting adult, it just baffles my mind why any woman would want to enter a relationship with a man who wants to control her every habit. Especially given how many women are forced to live in that kind of situation every day with little hope of getting out.
All in all, not a great read. I hope Ian Somerhalder will hopefully have enough sense to not go near that film.