I watched and enjoyed the first 8 episodes of the TV series based on this book and was afterward saddened by a wait until April for the remaining 8 epI watched and enjoyed the first 8 episodes of the TV series based on this book and was afterward saddened by a wait until April for the remaining 8 episodes. What would happen next? I had to know! So out I went to buy the book.
The first half went slowly for me. I already knew what was going to happen, but once I got to where the show left off and all was new to me, I could not get my face out of this book. Every spare moment I had was devoted to it. It's been a shamefully long time since I've read a book that did that to me. A book that even had me putting binge watching more BBC programs on Netflix on hold. It's not breathtakingly gorgeous writing, but it is a romance that I couldn't help getting swept up in, and it doesn't hurt that visions of Sam Heughan's portrayal of the hard-headed and virtually indestructible Jamie Fraser kept coming into my head as I read.
The story follows Claire, from 1940s England, who gets taken back in time while on holiday in Scotland to a time 200 years earlier. There she attempts to fit in as a Sassenach outlander, has a lot of trials and tribulations, and marries the reckless (and okay, I'll admit it, he's adorable) Scot, Jamie Fraser, out of necessity. The story does have some elements that are not for the weak of heart. There is rape, beatings, and brutality of such disturbing nature it's hard to read through, but a reader would do well to remember that it's appropriate to the time period. I'm sure that someone 300 years from now reading a book about our present time would be just as shocked by what we're capable of doing to each other. I wouldn't skip this book on account of any of that. Overall, it's a very good read during winter hibernation and if you're like me and want the TV show to come back asap, this is a good temporary remedy. I've already got the next enormous volume (surprise, it's a series!) at the ready. ...more
The first book in this series is still my favorite, and this one now comes in at a close second. At first I was not sure about it because it seems eveThe first book in this series is still my favorite, and this one now comes in at a close second. At first I was not sure about it because it seems every series I've read involving dragons has to have one or two volumes that are plague-centric. Some disease comes along leaving the dragon or human population stricken and that's gotten old for me because of how much material of this genre I do read. While this is the case in this book, the plague is in no way central to the story. Thank goodness! So far Temeraire and company have gone on adventures in China, Turkey, and Prussia. This book takes them to Cape Town, Africa, in search of a cure for said plague, and from there, on a surprisingly good whirlwind adventure to the wild interior. This Temeraire story would have gotten a full five stars from me if it weren't for the very abrupt ending. It felt like the author had paused for a breath mid-thought and never continued. It should have ended when they got back to England and tied up those loose knots. Save the rest for the next book! I do love this series dearly and the stories do keep getting stronger. I'll keep reading on until the very end. ...more
This book contains interviews from people of all walks of life and thankfully doesn't seek to define what a Londoner is in the process (though a few iThis book contains interviews from people of all walks of life and thankfully doesn't seek to define what a Londoner is in the process (though a few interviewees do try). It tells the stories of immigrants and the homeless, the successful and the down-and-out, all with their own unique perspectives on life in the capital. There was never any middle ground within the interviews. People either loved London or they hated it. They missed it or they wanted to get out of it. One of my favorites was a trader at the New Spitalfields Market. Absolutely hilarious and enlightening at the same time. I never knew there were beehives on top of the Royal Festival Hall. A unique source of honey. Also loved the "voice of the London Underground" story, and an elderly woman who continues to resist her family's efforts to take her out of the city and into the country. Truly a great and entertaining mix of voices in this book, making me nostalgic, remembering my own time as a temporary Londoner. Film school student, living in North London. I loved the neighborhood I ended up in so much that I refused to move to Ealing to be closer to school and instead endured 2 hours on the tube everyday. Good thing no one romanticizes the tube in this book! ...more
The continued adventure of Kid Loki's attempt to save Asgard and Earth against the Serpent, God of Fear. This compilation was more disjointed becauseThe continued adventure of Kid Loki's attempt to save Asgard and Earth against the Serpent, God of Fear. This compilation was more disjointed because of the perspective of other characters being thrown in randomly like Mephisto and Volstagg, but that did not make me like it any less once I got used to the different, less continuous tale. I couldn't hate the Volstagg issue anyway. It was hilarious. The climax of the story seemed too quick after all the build-up, though. That was the only thing that makes me give it less than five stars. ...more
What if Loki finally got everything he ever wanted? Defeated Asgard, had Odin, Thor, and others imprisoned, and sat on the throne? This is what wouldWhat if Loki finally got everything he ever wanted? Defeated Asgard, had Odin, Thor, and others imprisoned, and sat on the throne? This is what would happen. It was interesting to read a Marvel tale from the villain's point of view. We learn his motivations first hand, and we discover that we can actually sympathize with the God of Mischief and Father of Lies. The artwork was a bit strange. I couldn't get past how Loki was portrayed as an ugly, shriveled up old man when he is always described in the original myths, other comics, and even in the films as extraordinarily beautiful. He looked gross in this book, even with missing teeth! It's not very difficult to look past that and enjoy the story though. Also included in this volume are some Journey Into Mystery comics from the 50's written by Stan Lee which were hilarious and the final one was from the Siege series and although it did not fit in that well, it might have been my favorite. Hela is growing on me. ...more
This was my first foray into Marvel comics. I have been curious about the Marvel take on Norse myth for a long time, and I was not disappointed. It waThis was my first foray into Marvel comics. I have been curious about the Marvel take on Norse myth for a long time, and I was not disappointed. It was clear to me that the author knows the original myths, as did the illustrator. The runestones were 100% accurate, and Odin even had an upside down valknut on his eyepatch. This was apparently the story of how Thor and Balder became reborn as mortal men post-Ragnarok, and how Thor got some new armour and a new hammer. Loki, of course, does what he does best. Trickery and betrayal. Looking forward to digging into some of the other Thor comics I got now. ...more
I have read a lot of books on Norse mythology and this is by far the best compilation of the stories put into prose form that I have ever read. The EdI have read a lot of books on Norse mythology and this is by far the best compilation of the stories put into prose form that I have ever read. The Eddas can be difficult to read for those that are not passionate about the material. This is perfect for the curious and the passionate alike. Each myth is accompanied by notes in the back for those that want to delve a little deeper. There is also an extensive bibliography for further reading. My own personal favorite myth is The Binding of Fenrir, and here it is excellent. Same with Thor's Journey to Utgard and the always hilarious Loki's Flyting (taken from the equally hilarious poem from the Elder Edda called Lokasenna). This book takes readers from Creation to Ragnarok, across the Nine Realms, and on remarkable journeys with the Aesir gods of the Norse pantheon. They will make you laugh and make you sit on the edge of your seat in eager anticipation for what will happen next. I recommend it for both readers well-versed in the myths and for newcomers. ...more
This compilation of lost tales read like a mythology, and as such, only fans of mythos and fantasy would truly enjoy it. I did. I could draw a lot ofThis compilation of lost tales read like a mythology, and as such, only fans of mythos and fantasy would truly enjoy it. I did. I could draw a lot of parallels between this and Norse mythology in particular. Tolkien wanted to create an English mythology, and so he did. Well worth the read for Middle-earth's biggest fans. ...more