apart from the shocking twist and abrupt ending, which i was not so fond of, i love how the author effortlessly blended the humour with the dram...more3.75/5
apart from the shocking twist and abrupt ending, which i was not so fond of, i love how the author effortlessly blended the humour with the drama. and that you couldn't quite pigeonhole most of the characters. taking e.g. raven's dad who seemed to be the villain in his family, but had his jolly moments (view spoiler)[ and also grieved like any other parent for the death of his child (hide spoiler)]. gemma .. she was relatable and witty for all her bluntness, but also unsufferable when looking down from her moral high horse, fortunately she came to her senses (more or less).
aussie ya-lit at its best, folks. i enjoyed every glorious minute of it!
book pairings: okay for now, looking for alibrandi
i hesitated. "i thought wearing blue eye shadow was out now?" "what would you know?" said debbie. dad walked into the kitchen, his hair slicked down with baby oil. "bloody hell!" he said."did you fall on your face?" mum's bottom lip flickered. "debbie gave me a makeover." "with a plank?" "no," said debbie. "she can't go to brian's like that," said dad. he wiped the oil off his hands onto a tea towel. "they'll think i bash her." (p30)
*** ** *** ** *** ** ***
"how do you know when you're in love?" i asked. mum stood up and popped her cup in the sink. "oh that's easy. i know a good test. you'll know when you're in love when you meet someone and --despite his faults and flaws-- you'll happily clean his shoe for him after his trodden in dog poo." "that's the test" i asked. "dog poo? that's the test you used on dad?" "your father had a lot of flaws," said mum. "he hocked up his phlegm in a way that made my skin crawl. he wasn't a good listener. he was tight with his money. his hair was oily and he always seemed to have a speck of red capsicum caught in his front teeth - but one day we went for a walk and he trod in a mountain of poo, and i couldn't clean it quickly enough. it was delight. a pleasure. after that, i knew he was 'the one', even though his flaws are the same if not worse." she dipped her hands into her pockets and beamed at me. "the moment that something like the dog poo happens to you and you don't care, you'll know you've found 'the one'!" "but what about the fireworks, the heart thudding and the legs trembling like jelly?" i asked. "the're important," said mum. "but they're not always the most reliable hallmarks of enduring, true love." she patted my head. "no, gem. you can't go past the dog poo test." (p112-113)["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
cover the cover sums the story of the book in just one picture up: dark, creepy, terrifying, but also with flashes of beauty. i get goosebumps jus...more2.5/5
cover the cover sums the story of the book in just one picture up: dark, creepy, terrifying, but also with flashes of beauty. i get goosebumps just by looking at this cover.
story daphne (daughter of lilith and lucifer) and a mortal boy, truman meet in hell, because he tried to kill himself. but circumstances allow truman to return to earth. daphne stays in hell. when her brother goes missing, she leaves her home behind to find truman, the last person to see her brother. one thing leads to another and they find out some surprising things..
the good, the bad & the ugly the story read nicely, although sometimes a little stiff.
angels aren't all downright good or evil, more like somewhere in between, just like the demons who are in hell. that added a nice touch. i like my characters with shades of gray. there are even some horror elements (that's a plus point, btw!) (view spoiler)[a baby who can talk and doesn't need food for a month with pointy metal teeth (flashbacks to angelfall) (hide spoiler)]
there's no love triangle (hooray), there were some nice and touching moments and dialogues between the lead characters, but overall it still wasn't enough. maybe i'll feel differently at some point, but right now? nope. also the secondary characters like lilith or beelzebub (view spoiler)[In later Christian and Biblical sources he appears as a demon and the name of one of the seven princes of Hell. [ article] (hide spoiler)] or obie (her brother) were underdeveloped. i wish the author had polished the characters a little bit more, to give them a little shine.
the showdown wasn't much of a showdown. it was pretty ... anticlimactic to tell the truth.
quotes daphne & truman: "I have a toothbrush,” I tell him, trying to make him feel at home. “You can borrow it, if you like.” He just looks at me. Then he smiles a little, shaking his head. “Toothbrushes aren’t the kind of thing people usually share.” “I know. I haven’t used mine yet though, so it’s new. It could be yours instead.”
beelzebub: “What you have to understand is that this is his life, and he’s the one who has to live it. People make decisions, and maybe you don’t always agree, but those choices are still their own.”
flashbacks to daughter of smoke & bone: All I know is that demons are born from chaos. They’re born from rage or blood or fire, or ruined holy water. They’re born from eggs. They come into the world as wisps of smoke or in grotesque forms that splinter off and multiply. There are all kinds of origins, all different ways to be born [..]
love is a bitch: (view spoiler)[I remember kissing Truman on the balcony, and maybe he never said he loved me, but he meant it anyway. And there’s my mother, shrieking in pain when she thought something had happened to her son, and Myra with her sly smile and her dead eyes, grieving for Deirdre in the only way she knew how. My father, holding the razor to Beelzebub’s throat, telling him that it would all be over in an instant. (hide spoiler)]
moloch & truman: “I’m not a holy man,” Moloch said from behind his hand. “I’m not pious, and I’m not good. But if I were, your penance would be to start reaching for the things you want and giving up the things that will destroy you.”
likeable female protagonist on a quest to save her sister. loved the parts about the family. as an individual pal (you know, drinking beer on th...more3.75/5
likeable female protagonist on a quest to save her sister. loved the parts about the family. as an individual pal (you know, drinking beer on the porch with), i'd have liked him, but as a serious love interest, he was .. bleh so far.
matthew mcconaughey represents a certain type of romantic-comedy hero that i’ve come to loathe. the man-pig. the bad boy. the douchebag. the guy who has to be tamed or fixed – or by-true-love cured. when it’s not matthew mcconaughey in this role, it’s gerard butler. or josh duhamel. it’s always somebody who looks good with his shirt off because that’s what this character has instead of redeeming qualities – a really spectacular chest. it’s supposed to be disarming, i think. but it’s not.
for me, there’s nothing romantic – or even darkly irresistible – about a roguishly handsome guy who treats women like kleenex. when one of these characters comes on screen, i always want katherine heigl to run the other way as fast as she can. (it’s always katherine heigl, isn’t it? someone in hollywood loves watching katherine heigl fall in love with lower primates.)
this stereotype – the guys who hates women until he finds the right one – isn’t just gross; it’s kind of a dangerous lie. i’ve never met a creep who was just one kate hudson encounter away from being a great catch. it’s insulting to men, i think, to imply that they need kate hudson to turn them. that they have to be tricked into wanting love at all. and it’s insulting to love to imply that this is the point. falling in love isn’t about turning a bad person good.
"for eight years i dreamed of fire. trees ignited as i passed them, oceans burned. the sugary smoke settled in my hair as i slept, the scent like a cloud left on my pillow as i rose. even so, the moment my mattress started to burn, i bolted awake. the sharp, chemical smell was nothing like the hazy syrup of my dreams; the two were as different as indian and carolina jasmine, separation and attachment. they could not be confused.
standing in the middle of the room, i located the source of the fire. a neat row of wooden matches lined the foot of the bed. they ignited, one after the next, a glowing picket fence across the piped edging. watching them light, i felt a terror unequal to the size of the flickering flames, and for a paralyzing moment i was ten years old again, desperate and hopeful in a way i had never been before and would never be again."
A whimsical and refreshingly honest coming of age story about the blossoming sexuality of a teenage girl, based o...morefilm pairing:
TURN ME ON, (GOD)DAMMIT!
A whimsical and refreshingly honest coming of age story about the blossoming sexuality of a teenage girl, based on the novel by Olaug Nilssen.
15-year-old Alma (Helene Bergsholm) is consumed by her out-of-control hormones and fantasies that range from sweetly romantic images of Artur, the boyfriend she yearns for, to down-and-dirty daydreams about practically everybody she lays eyes on. Alma and her best friend Sara live in an insufferably boring little town in the hinterlands of Norway called Skoddeheimen, a place they loathe so much that every time their school bus passes the sign that names it, they routinely flip it off. After Alma has a stimulating yet awkward encounter with Artur, she makes the mistake of telling her incredulous friends, who ostracize her at school, until Sara can’t even be seen with her. At home, Alma’s single mother is overwhelmed and embarrassed by her daughter’s extravagant phone sex bills and wears earplugs to muffle Alma’s round-the-clock acts of self-gratification. Throughout, the complexities of Alma’s burgeoning sexuality are compassionately rendered by Systad Jacobsen with a frankness that always rings true, as does first-time actress Helene Bergsholm’s funny and moving performance as Alma.
Laced with warmth and quirky humor, Turn Me On, Dammit! is a light-hearted take on a story that is told so often about boys and so rarely about teenage girls. [ click ] [ review ](less)
i wish the book had been longer, because if you actually hold it in your hands ... - it's pretty thin. i inhaled the story. the book cover added to th...morei wish the book had been longer, because if you actually hold it in your hands ... - it's pretty thin. i inhaled the story. the book cover added to the story's sinister tone. ♥
some people complained about it being too slow. i sort of agree. twas slow, but not an unbearable slow, rather an enjoyable slow. i also think the slowness was necessary, so as for the reader to take in enough background information, in preparation for the line#2.
kate is an appealing but not overly-idealized heroine, and a smattering of eastern european and roma (gypsy) folklore and tradition gives the book sh...more kate is an appealing but not overly-idealized heroine, and a smattering of eastern european and roma (gypsy) folklore and tradition gives the book shape. mostly, though, it’s about human nature: suspicion, desperation, family loyalty, mob mentality. to an adult reader, it’s a mite predictable, but not in particularly frustrating way; it didn’t feel like kate was being daft by not putting things together, it just felt like the reader had a longer view of the situation. kate had immediate concerns to distract her; the reader is looking for the big picture. the only significant flaw is the ending; it feels a bit too neat, and there are enough sudden changes to make the reader feel a bit jerked-around. still, it’s a beautiful, gripping novel. [ thebooleyhouse ] (less)
The story switches back and forth the whole book through. It's told in 1st person from Ellie's point of view.
At the beginning, Ellie is 15. And this i...moreThe story switches back and forth the whole book through. It's told in 1st person from Ellie's point of view.
At the beginning, Ellie is 15. And this is where she gets in touch with Pride & Prejudice and thus Jane Austen, with whom she gets a good friend and companion ... so to speak.
Ellie is pretty much an average girl. She gets good grades. She loves books. She thinks about boys. If only she could get that bad boy Sam out of her head.
Then we see her, a few years later with her disastrous relationships with guys (one turns out to be gay, another is a two-timer, then one who's scared of being committed and doesn't want children ... etc).
Her relationship with her family isn't described thoroughly, probably because she just doesn't have a very good one, especially with her very mean sister Di. Yet. Because that improves a lot, as time goes by.
As I said, the story switches back and forth the whole time.
First she's 15. The next chapter she's an adult. Then we get a flashback and she's 17, then 18. Then she's an adult again and the author tells us how Ellie loses her virginity, to the one guy she supposedly hated (& feels attracted to nonetheless), - Sam Blaine. She's happy and in 7th heaven, only Sam suddenly doesn't speak to her anymore. She's hurt and angry. Their ways part anyway, because it's the last year of school.
In the last few scenes of the book, she's finally already 34. Just like in the first chapter, as she begins to tell us her tale of finding her one true love.
The Jane Austen, in Ellie's mind proves to be a very important friend to Ellie. Austen warns & encourages Ellie all the while with help and advice. At the very end of the book, we even get to know, why Ellie can hear Austen's voice in the first place.
You are more imaginative than any of them. Your cousin. Your siblings. Even your schoolmates. They have talents, to be sure, but beyond an intelligent mind there must be a creative spirit. It is not enough to absorb mere facts. True invention is in the application of vision. This you have in grand measure, far beyond your years and experience.
It was funny how Austen eyes the male species still very suspicously. Let me give you an example ...
It is more likely a result of the philosophy you persist in holding dear. Romanticism encourages an abandonment of restraint and, as you’ve so often wished to fall in love without regard to rationality, this invites the absurd. Your mistakes in judgment are not due to the complexity of humanity, Ellie. They are due to the lens with which you view love.
Yet, as for knowing the truth of your fate, Ellie, I confess I do not. I do believe, however, that it is always better to have loved well—fully and purely—for once, rather than halfheartedly for always. I had hoped this advice might be of use to you, too.
So ... is the book worth your time? Oh, yes.
WARNING ! WARNING ! WARNING ! WARNING ! WARNING ! This might be a YA book, but includes plenty love scenes. You have been warned.(less)