I found this to be a very moving story. Sometimes it flowed right along, others it stuttered. Sometimes I wished it was done, others I didn't want it...moreI found this to be a very moving story. Sometimes it flowed right along, others it stuttered. Sometimes I wished it was done, others I didn't want it to end because I knew what was coming. But given the life Henry DeTamble leads, I'd have to say that sort of movement was only entirely accurate.(less)
I really enjoyed this story, but found myself frustrated semi-regularly. To me, there's nothing worse than conversation you trip over, and to keep run...moreI really enjoyed this story, but found myself frustrated semi-regularly. To me, there's nothing worse than conversation you trip over, and to keep running head into it in the midst of an otherwise smooth tale irked me. That said, the concept was incredible, and the story told really well. Even if I feel a bit cliff-hung by the ending.(less)
Welcome to A Christmas Carol: the Valentine's Day Version, a truly inspired retelling.
Marly has died, after a slow withering away, leaving her boyfrie...moreWelcome to A Christmas Carol: the Valentine's Day Version, a truly inspired retelling.
Marly has died, after a slow withering away, leaving her boyfriend Ben alone. And as most of us would probably be quick to do, Ben needs to lay blame. So he blames the world, and love, and life. Love tricked him, left him. He decides it can't be trusted. And that no one else should trust it, believe in it, or experience it either. If possible, this is even more heartbreaking thatn all that the original Scrooge looses out on due to Greed.
Ben's friends don't want to give up on him though. At least, not faithful Fred. Only Ben can't let him in. He can't stand to see him with his girlfriend Sarah, a continuation of the life Ben once had. With Valentine's day approaching, Ben begins to loose his hold on himself, and starts lashing out. That night, he gets lashed back.
Marly arrives in much the same fashion as in any other variant of the tale, only this time she's a teenage girl, and her chain is a chain made up of pieces of her past with Ben. Once a perfect length, it has been made ponderous because he can't let her go. It's too much for her to carry.
Unwilling to watch Ben suffer, and give up on life, she has arranged with three spirits to meet with him. He understands that she must have gone through much to get him this chance, that she wants to save him, so he tries to keep an open mind. Yet when the first spirit is due, no longer so sure, he resorts to hiding beneath his sheet.
The Spirit of Love Past brings Ben back to earlier days. Days before Marly came into his life, the day she did--and he failed to really notice. He travels through better times, beautiful times, and begins to remember what he's shut off. The Spirit of Love Present arrives on a thrown of Valentines and love letters, and travels with him throughout his town, celebrating love, showing him it still exists, that it is in fact not far removed from life itself. Indeed, without love, life can't survive.
He sees a special night with Marly, at the apartment of a friend. He sees the same apartment, with a new couple inside, sharing a special night. The very couple he errupted in front of that very day. Already his harsh words have planted tiny poisonous seeds between them.
The final Spirit shows him a loveless world. People ill-speaking the dead, Tiny and Tim broken up, not speaking. A distraught Fred and a furious Sarah. A furious Marly, if she were still alive. His appreciation for life renewed, Ben hopes to avoid facing the truth, but isn't given the option.
Ben wakes on Valentine's Day full of joy and loving everything. A young boy runs to the Florist to buy him their largest bouquet. He goes shopping and buys presents for all of his friends, to be delivered at the Anti-Valentine's Day party. Hehas set off with a passion on his new path: one where love and life are ell-encompassing, to be treasured.
I truly hope this book will be read in schools. It's a wonderful re-visioning of a Classic, with plenty of merit of its own, and at the very least would make for a great comparative essay. I had no idea what the story was about when I bought the book--the decision was made based solely on the author. But Marly's Ghost turned out to be more than I had expected, and will sit on the shelf reserved for my Favorite Books, to be read repeatedly.(less)
Marina's relationship with her brother Lex has always been different than that of normal siblings. Therefore, it’s not a shock to anyone when she take...moreMarina's relationship with her brother Lex has always been different than that of normal siblings. Therefore, it’s not a shock to anyone when she takes his apparent suicide so hard. But there’s more to the story than anyone knows. At least, so she thinks.
As Marina delves deeper into the mystery, struggling to understand what happened to her brother, hidden truths come to light. But none so large as those learned when she takes off to visit her father.
This is a story of love: how it can raise you up and pull you down, heal you and break you(less)
Bella Swan isn’t looking forward to life in Forks. Though her dad is easy to be around, she’s spent most of her life without him. On top of which, she...moreBella Swan isn’t looking forward to life in Forks. Though her dad is easy to be around, she’s spent most of her life without him. On top of which, she can’t stand the weather, and she knows she won’t fit in.
So when the first week of school is full of stares and whispers, Bella’s not surprised. Some of her classmates seem friendly enough, though some also seem overly friendly. All in all, things seem to be going fairly well. Until Biology, when her lab partner takes an immediate dislike to her, more along the lines of hatred.
When Edward Cullen stops coming to school, Bella assumes it must somehow be her fault, and can’t imagine what she did that was so bad. She finds out from a classmate that the Cullens are frequently absent, being big campers, and is somewhat appeased. But unprepared for Edward’s reappearance and attitude change.
While most of the school stears clear of the Cullen family, and Bella herself finds them intimidating, she’s also enthralled, especially with the ever-changing Edward. After he saves her life, it only gets more complex. The more she learns, the more curious she becomes, and the more reticent he is to tell her.
This is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. The story is great, and the characters will pull you right in. I, myself, am currently awaiting the sequel (with not enough patience).(less)