Ever read a book only a while ago and then had a sudden urge to read it again? Fahrenheit 451 is one of my examples. And instead of picking up the act...moreEver read a book only a while ago and then had a sudden urge to read it again? Fahrenheit 451 is one of my examples. And instead of picking up the actual book, I picked up the recently published graphic adaptation. It wasn’t what I planned, but it's what I took out of the shelf and I thought, “Hey, what not?”
The comic book version was more than what I expected. It was very faithful to the book, and the art was wonderful. And the irony of this adaption! Fahrenheit 451 states that one of the causes for the decline of books is that books were being abridged to comic books. There is a particular quote from the novel that says this: “"Books cut shorter. Condensations. Digests, Tabloids. … Classics cut … to fill a two-minute book column.”
Is the dystopian world of Fahrenheit 451 alarming close to ours then? It is if people are going to read this comic book as a means of gaining a shortcut of the novel. However, I would recommend this for those who have already read the novel and would like to it see portrayed in a different way. (less)
If there’s ever any more new books to the Harry Potter series, this is the closest it can get. You just need to forget the fact that it’s fanfic and s...moreIf there’s ever any more new books to the Harry Potter series, this is the closest it can get. You just need to forget the fact that it’s fanfic and simply enjoy this next generation of the Harry Potter world. Lippert does an amazing job depicting it, and I doubt HP fans will be disappointed. Well, that is, if you don’t worry yourself about the smallest and silliest details that may be wrong. :D
If you enjoyed the first James Potter book, you’re going to find this second book much much better. I really hope there’s a third book. There is still much left unanswered, and questions like "What did that ending scene mean?" and "What's going to happen to blahblahblah?" and "And what about him/her?" are going to kill me sooner or later. The story can't definitely end here, can it? There must surely be more, right? (less)
Whenever I had the slightest bit of free time, I was plunging into the pages of Fire. I couldn't stop reading it.
What Kristin Cashore did here is shi...moreWhenever I had the slightest bit of free time, I was plunging into the pages of Fire. I couldn't stop reading it.
What Kristin Cashore did here is shift her camcorder and zoom it into a different area of the world she created (and go back 35 years but a camcorder can't do that, so we will ignore that part). She has a story that will not disappoint her fans. And people who didn't like Graceling: well, there is no Katsa in this book, so maybe there is something you might like in here.
The writing, the plot, the fantasy, the complex characters, the wonderful gripping scenes--I devoured it all, and now I'm hungry for Bitterblue. (less)
I used to think that Frankenstein was the monster and not the creator of the monster. I know, tsk tsk. But I bet there are numerous number of people w...moreI used to think that Frankenstein was the monster and not the creator of the monster. I know, tsk tsk. But I bet there are numerous number of people who think that too. Confess it; I won’t bite you. No, Frankenstein is not the green-skinned blockheaded zombie with bolts in his neck. Frankenstein is the person who created the monster. There are several other things that shouldn’t trust from the movie, so it’s best to read the book instead.
I love how the story is like a set of Russian dolls. The largest doll that covers it all is Walton’s letters to his sister, and Frankenstein’s story fits inside that, and within Frankenstein’s story is the monster’s story. See how beautifully layered that is?
And it’s beautifully meaningful too. It raises great questions about humans trying to go beyond their limits when experimenting in science. Right now, nanotechnology is the hot topic full of hope, but what about the ethical dangers that could occur in the future as a result of this scientific advance? It’s stuff to ponder about.
If you want, you could block out all of the themes and symbols and just read it as a chilling horror sci-fi story. It’s quite an extraordinary book whichever way you read it. (less)
I read this in... 4th grade?? Well, whatever, this is the sequel, but I read this before the first book (which I rarely do). But I remember really lik...moreI read this in... 4th grade?? Well, whatever, this is the sequel, but I read this before the first book (which I rarely do). But I remember really liking it. (less)
**spoiler alert** OH MY GODS... This was, like, the perfect ending for the series. All the loose ends were tied and all the questions were answered. T...more**spoiler alert** OH MY GODS... This was, like, the perfect ending for the series. All the loose ends were tied and all the questions were answered. The conclusion of the saga was perfect. Not at all sappy and lived-happily-ever-after. Simply perfect. (Okay, I need to stop saying that word). Perfect! XD
*****************NOW TIME FOR SPOILERS************************
1) I like the title of the book. When all the other gods are out there having a hard time fighting Typhon, when it looks like Olympus is sure for destruction, there is only Hestia left. She is the the goddess of hearth, meaning family and fireside. Percy says, "Hope survives best at the hearth." When your friends are dying around you and when you are fighting something like Kronos, there might only be one thing you could hold onto--family--and it might just tip the balance in favor of you and Olympus might be saved after all.
2) Okay, so Luke dies. It was kind of predictable. But how Luke dies was a total surprise. I was thinking more along the lines of a duel between Percy and Luke to death. And I'm sooo glad it didn't turn out like that. Also, it was cool how Percy didn't end up being the hero of the prophecy. I see Luke differently now after knowing his difficult past and how in the end he sacrificed himself to kill Kronos. Totally unexpected.
3) Hurray for Percabeth!! I was grinning the whole time during the "best underwater kiss of all time" part. Yay!
4) I loved Percy's wish of making the gods promise that they will to claim their half blood children. It's cool how camp half blood is going to have cabins for minor gods. And I'm so glad Percy turned down the gods' grant of immorality.
4) It was kind of creepy how Rachel became the Oracle, and how it was her "destiny." But with the previous Oracle not having anyone to take her place for years, and Rachel painting the pictures of Luke as a kid and the Empire State building surrounded by an army... it all makes sense. The pieces fit correctly.
6) Okay, adding onto #5--the second great prophecy.
*spooky music* "Seven half bloods shall answer the call. To storm or fire, the world must fall. An oath to keep with a final breath, And foes bear arms to the Doors of Death."
I wonder who the seven half bloods will be. I heard Rick Riordan saying that his second series (Yipee! I am so happy there's going to be a 2nd series!! Thanks Riordan!), is going to be about the next generation of half bloods. So, Percy, Annabeth, Grover, and others might not be in it, and if they are, they are going to minor characters. Also, I wonder what this new adventure is going to be.
I applaud this wonderful series. It's definitely one of my favorites, and I will be on the lookout for the second series.
Oh, I just remembered. Tomorrow, August 18th, is Percy Jackson's birthday! Happy (early) b-day, Percy!! =)(less)
**spoiler alert** Amazing! Incredible! I absolutely loved it!
Funke did an excellent job wrapping up the trilogy and even a better job in making me nev...more**spoiler alert** Amazing! Incredible! I absolutely loved it!
Funke did an excellent job wrapping up the trilogy and even a better job in making me never want to stop reading the book. Come to think of it, I might even like this book more than Inkheart… Wait, OMG, I didn’t just say that, did I? No way, Inkheart is the best book in the trilogy, right? Or did Inkdeath take its place? *Sigh* You know what? Let’s just say both of the books are really good! :)
Some points: (Oh, and don’t continue unless you read the book. The review is marked for having spoilers, but just making sure for some people out there. ;))
First thing’s first, I have all the abhorrence and hate ever possible towards Orpheus. My god, what a terrible character! All the trouble he caused, and his greediness! Well, a story does need an antagonist like that, but he is dreadful! And, to much of my dislike, he doesn’t die at the end! Adderhead and the Piper die, but he does not! What’s with that, Funke? (Just kidding, but still.)
Next point—Meggie’s new baby brother! He sounds so adorable! But, one thing that keeps bugging me, I don’t know his name! Or maybe I somehow skimmed over and missed that part... Or maybe Funke wanted it to be mysterious, and wanted us to use our IMAGINATIONS. Also, it is kind of interesting how Meggie wanted a sister and even Mo wanted a daughter, but it ends up to be a brother...Hmmm, interesting. :)
So, throughout the book, I always wondered what three words is Mo going to write in the White Book. Well, eventually, I read that it's Heart, Spell, and Death, the words in the three titles of the trilogy. And now, I wonder if Funke means "Heart SPELLS death." I don't know. It's just a thought. Anyway, I also heard that in the German version the second book was Inkblood, not Inkspell. Weird.
Oh, another thing! Farid...Okay, I admit it, he was kind of getting annoying in this book. He was always trailing around Dustfinger, and if Dustfinger wasn’t there, sulking around. So, I perfectly understood why Meggie didn’t feel the same way towards Farid like she used to. And, why she started liking Doria...But in the end of Inkdeath…! (And here comes my point.) Meggie was just like said, “Oh, sorry, Farid, but I don’t like you anymore. I like it here. I don’t want to come with you...but good luck wherever you going,” and Farid just left… forever… It was just so sad... :(
Well, is anyone asking what I didn’t like about the book? Well, I thought and thought, and found one thing.
Meggie is NOT the main character in the book! *Gasp* (I know, right? I couldn’t believe it!) Seriously though, she does NOTHING, but sit around and worry and expect OTHERS to save her beloved father, Mo. Ugh, I completely hated that. I read the whole 700 and so pages and she simply did zilch! Even ever-disliked Jacopo, Violante’s son, had a bigger role in the conclusion of Inkdeath than Meggie. Where is the daring, audacious Meggie I knew in the first two books that basically disappeared in the third one?
So, I give this book 5 stars. (I'm ignoring that one thing I dislike about the book. Maybe Funke wanted the adults to "save the day" this time. Whatever.) Anyway, I enjoyed the trilogy a lot and now it's kind of sad there isn't more... *weep* (less)
**spoiler alert** I went from pretty much disliking this series to completely loving it. With each book, the series got better and better, and CITY OF...more**spoiler alert** I went from pretty much disliking this series to completely loving it. With each book, the series got better and better, and CITY OF GLASS was the best one, no question about it.
This last book was definitely a roller coaster ride for me—twisting and turning, the sudden drops, the dramatic climbs, the breathless and heart-pounding moments, etc. The vivid emotions shown throughout the book were wonderful. It was all great fun. And the ending was just right—well-rounded and satisfying and fuzzy-feeling.
And there was a solution to the love triangle! After I finished CITY OF ASHES, I thought, “How could the things between Jace and Clary ever get resolved?! It’s so complicated!” One of my friend guessed that Jace and Clary might not be siblings after all. (Oh, isn’t she a smarticle?) And I thought I would hate it if that happened. I really don’t like it when the reader is told something, and then later told that what they heard before was false. (Don't you just get bummed when that happens?) I thought I would hate it more in this book, especially since we have been knowing this lie for two whole books!
But that’s not what exactly happened. Yes, I did dislike it a bit. I thought “Why would a YA author keep pushing a love relationship with a sibling? That would raise too many questions from the public.” And when I read the twist, I was like, “Oh, right. Of course. She’s going to make them not related.” I thought it wasn’t realistic at first, and it would be more real-life-like if they remained brother and sister. However, I ended up liking it. And I loved how Cassandra Clare drops in clues that suggest it’s Sebastian, like how Clary thought she had known Sebastian all her life even if it was the first time she met him, or how she got Sebastian’s hair dye on her fingers. Cool foreshadowing. =)
The best thing out of the whole series are the characters. Oh god, I loved them. Each one really is making a journey of his/her own through the series. They grow, they change, they have their ups and downs in their journey, they learn their abilities...and most importantly, they have some yin and yang going. This makes them so real and flesh-like and distinctive. Sometimes I felt sympathy for Valentine, sometimes I hated Jace. It was crazy.
I liked who everyone ended up with. Alec and Magnus are awesome. I'm glad it isn't Simon and Clary, but I would prefer if he was with Maia and not Isabelle. I actually liked the part when Clary's mom tries to catch up to Luke and tell him her real feelings. I know, that kind of scene is in very freaking movie, but it was cute. And Jace and Clary... all's settled. ;)
One of my favorite quotes in the book is probably:
“So we all have to do that?” Maia said. “Get drawn on, I mean.” “Only if you’re going to fight,” Isabelle said, looking at the other girl coldly. “You don’t look eighteen yet.” Maia smiled tightly. “I’m not a Shadowhunter. Lycanthropes are considered adults at sixteen.” “Well, you have to get drawn on, then,” said Isabelle. “By a Shadowhunter. So you’d better start looking for one.” “But – “ Maia, still looking over at Alec and Magnus, broke off and raised her eyebrows. Simon turned to see what she was looking at – and stared. Alec had his arms around Magnus and was kissing him, full on the mouth. Magnus, who appeared to be in a state of shock, stood frozen. Several groups of people – Shadowhunters and Downworlders alike – were staring and whispering. Glancing to the side, Simon saw the Lightwoods, their eyes wide, gaping at the display. Maryse had her hand over her mouth. Maia looked perplexed. “Wait a second,” she said. “Do we all have to do that, too?” (less)
A father and a son walk through a post-apocalyptic wasteland. We don’t know their names (they are known simply as “the man” and “the boy”), and we don...moreA father and a son walk through a post-apocalyptic wasteland. We don’t know their names (they are known simply as “the man” and “the boy”), and we don’t know a thing about the catastrophe. We only know about their journey on the road. We only know about their heart-wrenching hope to survive. Nothing else matters.
It was beautiful and depressing. The lack of apostrophes and quotations, and the clipped conversations worked perfectly with the bleak setting.
I felt that there could have been more at the end, but nonetheless, this is an unforgettable story. (less)
One of the strongest aspects of the book was the way Hosseini depicted the culture of Afghanistan. The food, the places, the people were all very inte...moreOne of the strongest aspects of the book was the way Hosseini depicted the culture of Afghanistan. The food, the places, the people were all very interesting to read about, and it made me realize how little I know about Afghanistan. How I sit here, and there on the other side of the globe is a country in constant turmoil, its people always on the run for their lives and the sound of bombs always in the air. It really makes me think about today and the world and what it has become.
Some of the descriptions of the happier side of things—-the kite running, food, and streets of Kabul--brought back memories of my own. I remember how in India the electricity goes off at times. So, my cousins and I would go up on the rooftop because sitting inside the house when the fans weren’t working was definitely no fun. And so, we go up on the roof, grab the kites, and see if any bit of wind in the sweltering hot sky will let them fly. I was hopelessly bad at flying kites, so I would willingly let my cousins fly them, and squint up into the sky and watch the kites dance in the air. Sometimes, I held the spool, though that too I was bad at. I held it uncertainly with both of palm ups, and kept giving my cousins glances to see I was doing it the right way. I don’t quite remember my hands or my cousins’ getting bloodied like in the book. Oh well, maybe its different in Afghanistan. Anyway, I don’t think we had kite running in India, just kite flying. The food too gave me some good delicious memories of the kulfi pistachio ice cream or coconut juice or kofta. Yum. Anyway, my point is the way Hosseini paints out life in Afghanistan was spot on.
I was deeply absorbed in the first half of the story, completely engrossed by the events. The writing is quite simple, but it certainly did trigger emotions in me. The complex relationship between Amir and Baba (that’s father in Farsi) was wonderful to read about. The conversations between Amir and Hassan were heart-wrenching. It’s the human feelings that were sewed in between the events that make this book so so so powerful and brilliant. Friendship, struggle, loss, jealousy, redemption, hope. What makes us more human than that?
However, it was toward the second half that I started reading slower and started seeing a few flaws here and there. Sometimes, it was too dramatic, and sometimes, the twists were ironically cliché (you will learn why the irony if you read the book). Also, Amir was getting annoying the way he was acting sometimes. I thought it took too long for Amir to grow (not his age, but growth of character). I mean even after like thirty or whatever years, he still seemed like the same guy. He still didn’t learn from his past and his mistakes. Mostly, though, it seemed as if the second half was elongated with unnecessary parts Hosseini could do away without. The first half was perfect, every event was important and needed, but the second half just seemed dragged and slow.
Overall, though, I’m really glad that I read it. It's haunting and depressing, and yet, it is beautiful. Its one of those stories you remember longer than the rest. (less)
This book contains so much depth that it's bound to feel heavy in your hands regardless of the only 300 pages. You will fall in love with the vivid ch...moreThis book contains so much depth that it's bound to feel heavy in your hands regardless of the only 300 pages. You will fall in love with the vivid characters. The small Alabaman town will materialize before your eyes. Valuable messages of mankind and human nature will be uncovered. This book isn't just meant to be studied in high school; it's meant to be visited again and again and to be enthralled each time. (less)
Such a sweeping poignant story. I honestly can’t decide if this book or The Kite Runner is the better one of the two: A Thousand Splendid Suns just ag...moreSuch a sweeping poignant story. I honestly can’t decide if this book or The Kite Runner is the better one of the two: A Thousand Splendid Suns just again proves to show Hosseini’s immense talent of storytelling.
The backdrop of this book is the nearly forty years of tragic turmoil in Afghanistan’s history, from the Soviet occupation to the end of the Taliban rule. This story, however, mainly focuses on the lives of two extraordinary women, Mariam and Laila, who will meet each other by fate and must persevere in their hardships during a time when flamingoes could not be painted without trousers because their long bare legs were too revealing. Over the course of the book, I really felt for and was moved by the characters. Hosseini, through his eloquent prose, paints a heartbreaking reality of how Afghan women were crushed under the rules and regulations of the Taliban and within their households. I do hope he writes more in the future and I am waiting for his next book.
Maybe Katsa is a bit too strong of a female protagonist (anti-marriage and all that), but overall it was very engrossing read. It's what a great fanta...moreMaybe Katsa is a bit too strong of a female protagonist (anti-marriage and all that), but overall it was very engrossing read. It's what a great fantasy novel should be--high tide adventure, interesting characters, and a captivating plot. (less)