I think this book made me cringe more than Twilight :/ Stating the obvious: it started as fanfiction, so it obviously reads as fanfiction. The authorI think this book made me cringe more than Twilight :/ Stating the obvious: it started as fanfiction, so it obviously reads as fanfiction. The author feels the need to describe every little pointless detail - like the things Ana eats, what time she wakes up, repetitive thoughts, feelings and phrases… because let's be honest, she doesn't know what else to write to build her word count. Can you imagine what she wrote at the end of every chapter? "1000 likes and I'll write a 5000 word chapter next time, guys!"
The lack of thesaurus usage (oh, but when she uses one, she really uses one. Way to find the most obscure words in the suggestion list). The lack of any real plot, lack of a real climax (pun unintended. There were a lot of climaxes, obvs). Even the way the story ends, and it's obvious this little fanfic writer was thinking "yes! Ultimate devo ending! Now I can write BOOK TWO and all my fanfic.net fans will be begging me for more!"). The characters are flat and expected. Grey is all moody but sexy with a really dark past, Ana is a virgin but is ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL and has all the boys chasing her!! All the other characters have more life than these two.
But… let's call a spade a spade. At the end of the day, this book is absolutely mindnumbing, but sometimes we all need a little mindnumbing, a lot of cringing and a fuckload of laughs… not intended surely, but I'll take what I can get.
And I'm not gonna lie, I am reading the second one. Cos I can. We all know these two 1D characters are gonna end up together… I just want to see what other pointless crap James puts them through for 2 more books in order to finally get there. Plus surely the suspension cords are making a guest appearance soon, yeah? ...more
One Day is one of those books I'd ummed and aahed about reading for a solid year. I would always consider it when going through my Book Depository wisOne Day is one of those books I'd ummed and aahed about reading for a solid year. I would always consider it when going through my Book Depository wishlist, but ultimately I would choose something else. Something funnier-sounding, or prettier-looking, or just more interesting over all. Something that didn't constantly remind me of 'Vince and Joy' (which, by the way, never pick up 'Vince and Joy'. It is severely disheartening).
But when I came across it in Foyles, a bookstore in London, with the "Signed by Author" sticker on it... I immediately snatched it up. And I'm SO glad I did.
One Day follows an interesting premise: we are introduced to two characters, Dexter and Emma, on the 15th of July 1988. From thereon, we are given a glimpse into their lives, the same day each year, as they grow older, separate and together.
I loved this from the beginning. Not only did I thoroughly look forward to seeing where the new year would take these two characters, but Nicholls' creation of these people was BRILLIANT. The concept used in this novel could easily have broken down, either by moving too fast, or not giving the characters enough time to grow. The reader could easily have felt left behind by missing out on so much between each 15th of July. Instead, I remember distinctly putting the book down somewhere around the middle, and thinking... dear God, these characters are amazing. They felt INCREDIBLY real. Nicholls also did a superb job at always keeping the reader on their toes, while simultaneously keeping them well informed. You never feel left behind. You never feel like Em and Dex's lives are flying by.
The only reason this doesn't receive 5 stars is because of the ending. Without spoiling, the flow of the book does come to quite a sudden halt (readers will know what I'm talking about) that caused me to question what the motive was. Was Nicholls trying to draw a reaction from the reader? Shock them? Anger them? Or was he simply trying to remind us that you don't know what might happen in the future? Tomorrow? Next year? Either way, I'm not sure I agree with it; it doesn't seem to fit into the story.
Over all, I still loved this. I loved Emma and Dexter, I loved everything about them and then some. And now I'm so excited that David Nicholls has signed my copy \o/...more
Upon reading the final sentence, all I could think was 'that book was amazing.'
The beach is a brilliant portrayal of a downward spiral into madness, tUpon reading the final sentence, all I could think was 'that book was amazing.'
The beach is a brilliant portrayal of a downward spiral into madness, the longing for adventure and utopia, and the wreckage of that supposed paradise. Upon arriving in Thailand, Richard meets the mysterious Mister Daffy, who gives him a map with directions to the beach before slitting his wrists. Along with a french couple, Etienne and Francoise, the trio set off in hunt of this garden of eden, setting themselves up for more than they ever bargained for.
I picked this up because I once loved the movie. I haven't seen it since the release (I watched it many times that year, though. Almost ten years ago...) and with flashes of the film filtering through my mind, I wanted to read this if only to see if it matched up with what leftover memories I had. Bits of it did, most of it didn't; nevertheless, I loved it.
Garland's style of writing has made me envious. For NaNoWriMo this year, I tried to write a girl as she slowly doubts her reality. Garland's attempt is effortless. There is no telling; it is pure showing as Richard grows restless on the island, seeks danger in the DMZ, hallucinates a dead man. I think it is the moment when Jed turns to Richard and claims that he sees Mister Daffy in him that I bowed to Garland's skill. Everyone living on the island consider themselves sane, and yet... they're not. Along with Richard's spiral, several other characters follow the same route. It is brilliant characterisation.
At face value, the Beach is a paradise. But with every bump that comes along, a bit of that paint is scratched away, and we begin to see what is beneath that flawless sheen. And yet... even with the stunning climax, I still want to find my own beach, my own paradise, my very own broken garden of Eden.
I can't wait to watch the movie again, although I don't think it will rate so highly in my mind now that I've read the book....more
I don't really know what to say about this book, except that it's just confirmed my fears: cheating seems inevitable in our relationships, dishonestyI don't really know what to say about this book, except that it's just confirmed my fears: cheating seems inevitable in our relationships, dishonesty leads our lives, and we're doomed to live in our pasts.
While I liked this, I felt like there was something missing. I don't know what I expected, really. Something profound, some life-altering realisation.While I liked this, I felt like there was something missing. I don't know what I expected, really. Something profound, some life-altering realisation. Something.
The ending was not a surprise; I expected it. I'm wondering if by reading so much of Chuck Palahniuk, I've learnt to expect the unexpected when it comes to novels, or if everyone else saw the "twist" coming as well. Was it meant to be a twist for the audience, or just for Veronika? I'm curious.
I'm not quite sure what I DID like about this, either. I have a feeling things were lost in translation, and the fact that Paulo Coelho inserted himself into the novel kind of grated my nerves.
Apart from that, I did love the characters and their backstories, Veronika, Mari and Eduard in particular. I loved the stereotyping of "crazy" people. I wholeheartedly concur with some of the issues Coelho brought up: are you only crazy if everyone says you are? That fascinated me. The story of the King was great as well.
And I now have a desire to travel to Slovenia, in order to see this poet's statue, and the face of his lover on the wall. It sounds beautiful. ...more
First thought: I wish I hadn't seen the movie first.
Second thought: I really wish I hadn't seen the movie first. :(
Reading Palahniuk is an experienceFirst thought: I wish I hadn't seen the movie first.
Second thought: I really wish I hadn't seen the movie first. :(
Reading Palahniuk is an experience. You dive into his novels expecting nothing and everything all at once. Whatever you initially think, you won't be thinking by the end. Chuck has the most amazing ability to surprise the reader with the most BIZARRE concepts; his style is something that I definitely aspire to in my own writing (and is probably why I can never write a short story without a weird twist in the end). This is why I wish I'd read the book first, because I hated reading this knowing what the twist was. Ironically, the only reason I hadn't read the book first is because I hated the hype surrounding it. I've read nearly all his other books, and I put this off til last, determined that I didn't want to give into the hype. Yes, I'm an idiot.
Now, as for whether I enjoyed Fight Club... of course I did. As for whether I enjoyed it as much as his other novels... not so much. Once again, I don't know if it's because I started reading this knowing what I did (and the novel was therefore spoiled for me), or if I just didn't like it that much. Invisible Monsters, Survivor, HAUNTED... those novels are brilliant. Fight Club was maybe on par with Diary. No, better than Diary. The one good thing about seeing before reading though, is that I was able to pick up all the little clues and hints Palahniuk slipped in, which is always fun. He's an extremely clever writer. (If you haven't picked it up yet.. I QUITE LOVE HIM. Haha.)
I would recommend reading this. Just read it before you see the movie. Chuck deserves that from you, at least ;)...more
I don't usually write my reviews so soon after starting a new book, but this one is especially nagging at me.
First of all, Holly Golightly is terriblI don't usually write my reviews so soon after starting a new book, but this one is especially nagging at me.
First of all, Holly Golightly is terribly offended that Patty Belle could even be considered a worthy comparison. I loved Breakfast At Tiffany's, and thought it was a brilliant character sketch of such a unique woman. The Lotus Eaters feels like it's trying too hard to follow in Capote's shoes. Marianne MacDonald attempts to keep the narrator impassive, a quiet observer so that the star character, Patty, can shine through. It doesn't work, though. Lottie (the narrator) is constantly having to explain why Patty is so wonderful, which only makes her so-called "Holly Golightly-like charm" all the more transparent. It is a classic case of telling instead of showing. Furthermore, I cannot understand why Lottie and Patty are friends. It is as though MacDonald has tried to throw the characters into one of those chance encounters which lead to an instant connection and lifelong friendship, but I just can't see it.
To be fair, though, maybe I wouldn't be so harsh if the novel summary didn't compare The Lotus Eaters to such a loved classic - it was doomed to be compared and criticised as so, instead of on its own merits, and all because of a small paragraph at the back of the book. I don't think I would have started the rant if it wasn't for that description.
Honestly, I don't know if I'm going to finish this novel. We'll see.
Edit: I won't be finishing this anytime soon. I'll try again in the future....more
I really enjoyed Rules For Saying Goodbye. After reading reviews, I can understand many readers' points of view that it's very aimless, but I think tI really enjoyed Rules For Saying Goodbye. After reading reviews, I can understand many readers' points of view that it's very aimless, but I think that's what I enjoyed so much. The disjointment of plot and paragraph gives a sense of aimlessly wandering through life, something I find very relatable. The dialogue was very witty and had me laughing out loud at times. All the characters that Katherine met were unique and refreshing and real; there weren't two that were alike, and trust me, there were a lot of characters. I liked that there was no climax, no "real" plot, no major problem to overcome. But I can understand why people would find that dull, frustrating or anti-climatic.
I think it's something you just need to appreciate for what it is, rather than waiting or expecting it to become something more. It's a journey through life. That's all. ...more