What a fun read! Well done epistolary-style, heightened the suspense as events unfolded. Not looking forward to the Brad Pitt movie coming out, becausWhat a fun read! Well done epistolary-style, heightened the suspense as events unfolded. Not looking forward to the Brad Pitt movie coming out, because I can't imagine they will capture the book's magic and style well enough! Great blend of humor, horror, drama, survival and monster story! ...more
I hated the ending - hated it! - because I knew there was not a next book to jump to, and that I would have to wait however long to meet up with CormoI hated the ending - hated it! - because I knew there was not a next book to jump to, and that I would have to wait however long to meet up with Cormoran and Robin again. Damnit!
The book is typical of my experience with JK Rowling/Robert Galbraith in that it's very engrossing, but I can't tell you why. The writing doesn't strike me as particularly brilliant at any given moment (though there are a few choice quotes that I'm sure will be featured in Goodread's Quote section). Not that her writing isn't brilliant, but that the seams are so well hidden, like the Harry Potter series. But I feel quite intimate with Cormoran, can see him so clearly, know his tics and preferences. Same with Robin. I know the story and the setting, can feel the cold winter in London, see the flamboyant characters who fill the background of the literary publishing world, but I can't tell you why I like the book. She (or do I refer to the author as 'he'?) stumps me. It was the same with HP back in the day, when I was encouraging my sister to just read the books. I coudn't tell her WHY I enjoyed them or why she should read them, just... just.. pick up the book and read it, you won't regret it!
I do admit that while I am reading instances in this book as well as the predecessor, my mind will wander about how much of this world did JK experience herself, as a writer, as a famed and public figure. But that's as much as my attention as a reader wanders away from the story.
Regardless, it's a great book. Not just entertaining and engrossing, but a keeper. Most genre novels are like junk food - consume with some regret afterwards - but this just leaves me wanting more. ...more
Yes the only reason I read this is because it was written by J.K. Rowling. But you know what? Certainly glad I did! Not without a few flaws, but thereYes the only reason I read this is because it was written by J.K. Rowling. But you know what? Certainly glad I did! Not without a few flaws, but there is something about how Rowling writes that captures a spirit unlike any other writer. The characters and scenes crackle on the page. Other thrillers has more tense and suspenseful plots, but these characters - well, ya kinda fall in love with them. They're quirky, loveable, flawed but funny. Each character is really individually fleshed out, has his or her own manner of speaking and tone. It took me a leisurely three days to read the book, and I was always eager to get back into the world. And now that the book is done, I kind of miss that world.
So maybe I'm not a Harry Potter fan because I like magic and wizards; maybe I'm a Harry Potter fan because JK Rowling is just a damned good writer and creator of literary worlds......more
Uh, wow. This was unexpectedly hot. Like, super hot.
I was all about resisting the hype, even though I caved with Twilight, and Hunger Games, and okayUh, wow. This was unexpectedly hot. Like, super hot.
I was all about resisting the hype, even though I caved with Twilight, and Hunger Games, and okay even Harry Potter, which I didn't start until the fourth book was out, way back when.
All because I can't stand people discussing and heatedly debating pop cultural things like books and movies which I have no experience with!
So I bought the first, Fifty Shades of Grey, a couple of days ago, deciding there was no way I was going to get the second and third books. I really was not a big fan of the Twilight series, and I had yet to read any erotic fiction that I found palatable. How could this combination possibly appeal to me? Oh, but it did. Because of my age, because of my education, because of my low expectations?
In short, I found the book engrossing, the characters crisp and well defined (though a few points were lacking credibility - really Ana, you're graduating college and never got drunk, never kissed anyone, and you don't own a computer?? Hard to believe!), the plot absorbing and even humorous. And did I mention hot?
I received this book yesterday afternoon, and finished it at 2:30am this morning.
And of course, I've ordered books 2 and 3, am kicking myself for not order them for next day delivery....more
Great, easy to read and accessible book for anyone just getting started in the voice over world, or even just curious about what it entails. If you liGreat, easy to read and accessible book for anyone just getting started in the voice over world, or even just curious about what it entails. If you like what you read, and fail to be intimidated, then move on to the next stage - workshops, training, more "in-depth" books like The Art of Voice Acting, etc. If you are sad to realize that animation is only about 3% of the voice over world, then maybe this is your chance to stop and not invest anymore money or time into the field.
I've since taken a couple of "serious" workshops in voice over, as well as delved into limitless hours of internet research, and everything that Yuri and Tara say are right on target....more
How We Met (me & the book): At a book festival I attended this past weekend, one of the authors recommended Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan series asHow We Met (me & the book): At a book festival I attended this past weekend, one of the authors recommended Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan series as a really good (and hopefully future iconic) example of steampunk. Later in the day in a different workshop, another author cited the same as an incredible series while we were discussing Westerfeld's previous series, the dystopian Uglies. I figured, if two authors at different venues recommend the same book, I gotta go check it out. Plus Westerfeld is coming to my area at the end of this week touring on the release of the last of this trilogy, so I thought I’d better be prepared for the reading to get the most out of it. Had previously read “Uglies” but never got all the way through.
What's This About? This Young Adult steampunk novel takes place at the beginning of the first World War, and alternates between the points of view of the two main protagonists. The first is Alek, the 15- year old son of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand whose assassination sparked the Great War, and as a result Alek becomes the heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian empire. But there are issues with that. Second is Deryn, a British teen girl who disguises herself as a boy to enlist in the British Air Service. Both Alek and Deryn are on separate sides of the war - the former with the Clunkers who rely on machines and technology for their wars, and the latter with the Darwinists who have heightened the theories of Darwinism and create hybrid animals to do their bidding.
What’s Cool Well first, Westerfeld writes great stories - exciting pacing and plot woven around believable and distinct characters, all thrown into a very imaginative world. His Clunkers and Darwinists takes modern technology and cranks it up about ten notches. These are massive war machines the author has imagined, so they’re all large, and scary, and a challenge to master for these two protagonists. And he keeps them so separate, these two competing technologies, in an impressive manner. Well, in EVERY aspect Westerfeld is thorough. Details are believable.
Also, as a YA book, I like how the author emphasizes all the mistakes Alek and Deryn make as they’re thrown into their new respective worlds, and how they grow and learn from them. It’s not “yay look how smart/strong/clever I am” but “I will take a stand, oops I messed up and look at these horrible results” - over and over again. But through these mistakes and consequences, we see each character grow, which helps the reader to care a lot about what happens to each of them.
On top of all that, Westerfeld throws in the ingredient of “thriller’ and only from an informed eye do I see the conflict-on-every-page pattern. Even though I see it, the book is still thrilling and a real page turner. Did I mention I stayed up until 3:30am reading this book until the end?
But What Happened Here? Aside from reading the last page and wanting to read the next one immediately? :) I sort of wonder what happened to Deryn’s femininity. I know she’s trying hard to adopt a boyish manner so as to keep up her disguise, but somewhere it would have been nice to see her core femininity peep through, because then we ask near the end, who is she really?
I also wonder what happened to Alek’s inner turmoil? The reader is shown so many of his brave and daring qualities, but then we fall into being “told” that he’s a bit emotional and traumatized inside from his parents’ sudden death.
Tazza is cute, but does not serve an obvious purpose. Why is Tazza in the book? Comic relief? To shine extra light on Dr. Bowers' character? Unless he plays a larger, significant part in later books, I don't know why he's there.
But seriously, folks, these few critique points I had to really to conjure up. Most of the book is really tight, fast paced, well written and exciting to read.
Leftover Thoughts: Well, I could impress you all by confessing that I read this book all in one setting, staying up to 3:30am to finish it. But then again, that’s been my reading habit as of late - just carve out that block of hours to enjoy a book from beginning to end. This block of time for the Leviathan, however, was time well spent. And I mean it when I said how disappointed I was that the book actually ended, and how glad I am that there’s at least two more books coming.
The Deryn angle reminded me of one of the most beloved books of my youth, the Alanna series (aka Song of the Lioness quartet) by Tamora Pierce, where Alanna also dressed herself up as a boy so she could train as a soldier and knight, when girls weren’t allowed to do that kind of thing.
I'm really chomping at the bit to go get the next book, so I will post this entry, and head out to the library!
Recommend? Yes, for any lovers of YA, sci-fi fantasy, steampunk certainly, and fantasy.
I've been a sucker for these free Kindle books, as this first one is, and so far they're doing a good job sucking me into purchasing the rest of the sI've been a sucker for these free Kindle books, as this first one is, and so far they're doing a good job sucking me into purchasing the rest of the series. ...more