I'd love to get that phone call from my dad, but on the other hand, it might mess up with the way I live and the people around me. That was my thoughtI'd love to get that phone call from my dad, but on the other hand, it might mess up with the way I live and the people around me. That was my thought inspired by the book. It didn't put me through the position where I tug between keeping faith and starting to have a whole new perspective and embrace faith. This isn't Albom's best.
I thought that the plot was a curiosity waiting to be discovered. Sadly, it didn't flourished into an inspirational story. I got the sense midway through the book that it might notoriously turn out to be Stephen King-ish horror story or a detective thriller.
The good thing about it is that the read is light and easy and fast. ...more
**spoiler alert** This first novel in the Lincoln Rhyme series is heavy on technical crime scene procedures like reading the transcript for CSI TV ser**spoiler alert** This first novel in the Lincoln Rhyme series is heavy on technical crime scene procedures like reading the transcript for CSI TV series, and heavier on initials i.e. DCDS for deceased, confirmed dead at scene.
I like how the procedures were played out - through an amateur in crime scene, a heroine, led by an ex-forensics head who's a quad; and how the plot was laid out - scary and gross killings and a bit of holding back for suspense. The characters were all distinguished, enough to last for another sequel.
Overall, I think the series is made for hardcore fans of high-octane action novel and nerdy procedures on forensics. A good read on rainy, cold nights.
A superb read which will keep you up at night. The suspense is chilling and the action unstoppable. Now I know why even Margaret Thatcher bothered reaA superb read which will keep you up at night. The suspense is chilling and the action unstoppable. Now I know why even Margaret Thatcher bothered reading this espionage novel....more
Reading through the first part of the novel, I was convinced that Jeffrey Archer has the same formula as the master story teller Sidney Sheldon (but IReading through the first part of the novel, I was convinced that Jeffrey Archer has the same formula as the master story teller Sidney Sheldon (but I still think Sheldon outwit Archer). What surprised me though was how it compares with John Grisham too - in that it detailed technical elements of the banking and corporate matters during war as well as the Depression period. I am once again an accountant!
If Kane and Abel wasn't published in the late 70's, I am inclined to think that the plot picked up on cliche soaps on television, particularly Asian and Latin. It certainly kept me devouring page after page considering that the pace of the plot is fast, as opposed to the sluggishness of boob tube dramas. Very entertaining!
I recommended the book to my mom who loves Sheldon and espionage and crime thrillers.
I started reading Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and have to drop it when I realize in the second chapter that the George Smiley character is in it (I hI started reading Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and have to drop it when I realize in the second chapter that the George Smiley character is in it (I have copy of the series). So I opted to get to know Smiley first by reading Call for the Dead.
The short novel acquainted the readers dearly with Smiley, but I became more acquianted with British style of narrative - I have to switch between Kindle and dictionary from time to time. I didn't know that their English produce a bit of confusion and diffculty for someone like me who's educated in American English. For one, compleat is really complete.
The novel ran precariously between an espionage novel and a cliche murder mystery. I supposed I placed all expectations entirely on his first book. But I am determined to get to Le Carre's more popular ones - The Spy Who Came in from the Cold and Tinker, Tailor.
I like that Le Carre banked a lot on character backgrounds and their personalities and how these affected actions. I am expectant of real hard actions though like Bourne series, to balance the dossier-like narration and got frustrated. But I like how he creates phrases and sentences....more
The novel comprises several vignettes inter-woven to become a legit work. I don't read much of this stuff but I find it entertaining, however loose. IThe novel comprises several vignettes inter-woven to become a legit work. I don't read much of this stuff but I find it entertaining, however loose. Its winning mark perhaps, aside from being popular (might be due to the title being exotic, what with the mango!), is the sense of familiarity it leaves the reader. You could be Esperanza, Sally, or Louie's cousin or anyone, or altogether at once.
The stories they tell could have happened to you, in a different manner on a different time. The relatedness hits rather close to home, where all stories and dreams begin. The humor and simplicity (and its shortness) cover the dark reality of poverty.
My main issue is not with how the work was composed (Cisneros claimed in the 10th anniversary introduction that the work is in the different voices of the characters and are not made to be a superb literary award-worthy piece) but the sense of confusion it sometimes sends you - for instance, at times, I am not quite sure if Esperanza is a kid or an adult, I knew however that she is in the awkward stage of adolescence.
The House on Mango Street did not leave me a feeling of staying. What's the point though if Esperanza herself wants to go away? I would have liked to know how she made it out, which will be more inspiring than the feeling of boredom and at times, coldness, the novel leave you with....more
**spoiler alert** The first of the Century trilogy did not fail to impress historical fiction reader like me. It brought a sense of involvement as the**spoiler alert** The first of the Century trilogy did not fail to impress historical fiction reader like me. It brought a sense of involvement as the reader gets pulled in to the magnificent force of its well-defined plot and characters. At times though, the novel became too dragging; it felt dreadfully long as the war-focused events are minced at their smallest details. These brought forth texture to the environment the characters are in though - that real "feel" when you play an rpg video game.
The appeal of Fall of Giants came from the distinction of each character as they face their destinies (or their progressions throughout the story) and gradually interweave to define them as it ends. For one, Ethel's history translated well as she grew from being a housekeeper to becoming a strong political figure in British society.
Since it's a historical fiction, I couldn't vouch the accuracy of the historical events, but at the end of the book, Follett listed his researchers and history consultants, and explained how the facts are laid out and consolidated with the fiction.
Fall of Giants is a significant masterpiece for history junkies, students, Asians and politically-inclined people. The book explored the first world war as it raged in Europe with the involvement of US. It greatly helped Asians like me to understand the event better than what was set matter-of-factually in history books, as it draws the motives, the actions and the politics in the evolution of the power nations.
If only people of my country can understand how nations were built and shaped by war and political revolutions, can we understand where our nation is heading. Unfortunately, in higher education, we learn too much of the facts - the dates, famous historical figures, events - without trying to figure out its significance and effects. If I should be a college/high school instructor, I'll strongly recommend the book. ...more
**spoiler alert** George's books will always leave you gaping at the end and wondering what shall happen, though each part of A Song of Ice and Fire i**spoiler alert** George's books will always leave you gaping at the end and wondering what shall happen, though each part of A Song of Ice and Fire is lengthy. I can't wait to begin reading the next part - A Storm of Swords.
The manner that this second book was opened, kept the excitement running from reading the first one, as the red comet holds a single point to where the characters left off and begin. The characters in their points of views take on different interpretations heralding the significance of the astronomical event, based on their varied but related circumstances.
Throughout the book, as minor characters in the first book (i.e. Theon) progressed, the excitement dwindled as preparations and news of the wars advance. But George doesn't fall short of getting the ball back in the game by placing intrigues and suspense in every chapter ending.
I thought at first that Tyrion's character held this sequel together, that it might be a "Tyrion" story altogether. But I guess it is because Tyrion rose from the ashes of shame and grotesquerie in the first one, aside from being the witty and most lovable character. It's more of a payback time for Tyrion.
It's a shame though that the only war I remember so vividly was the siege of King's Landing in Tyrion and Davos's points of view. I was expecting that Tywin's war will be narrated, but perhaps it is because none of the characters with him was in the list of those with PoV chapters.
For an instant, I also lost interest with Tyrion's character during the battle in which he hacked and slashed enemies without getting injured, except the arrows missing him. But in the end, George surprised us even better - a traitor trying to kill him, with but a slight success of making him more grotesque.
I still can't wait how Sansa will break all through this mad game, how Jon Snow will claim honor, how Arya will reunite with her family, how Theon will continue to anger the reader with his dishonorable actions, how Lady Catelyn will hold herself together, how Tywin will take command, how Gendry will take part in the game of thrones, how Bran will use the advantage of his power, how Dany will retake the throne. I'm full of the basic questions, but I love how the length of the book preserved the details of the stories.
Well, overall, I still think this series is my best read in the fantasy and adventure genre....more
One of the best reads I've ever had in my lifetime. I've been trying to put it down for the last few years thinking how boring and cliche the first feOne of the best reads I've ever had in my lifetime. I've been trying to put it down for the last few years thinking how boring and cliche the first few pages are. After I got past the prologue and met the Starks, I was blown away. I've found one of the best series I've read after Harry Potter, Hunger Games and Women's Murder Club.
I like the fluidity of the story chapter after chapter as it is told by the points of view of different characters. The style helps readers understand the characters as they develop and progress through out the conflicts. It makes the book exciting as well as personal.
The world that Martin has presented is already seen a hundred times commonly with other fantasy and adventure fictions. Yet, the familiarity and details and involvement of the characters made it a whole new realm. Now I understand why HBO's Game of Thrones is highly rated (coupled by the nudism I think).
The gore and sex may quite be a peeve, but they aren't an excuse for throne wars, rather natural and necessary to the progress of story as well as add texture to the uniqueness of the world. Deception and murder are elements I find interesting with the book. It was like reading an adultified Harry Potter in a Da Vinci Code quest, caught in the midst of Arthurian and English wars. Every chapter end is a cliffhanger; the 800 plus pages didn't even yield a close-ended one and has to continue in the sequels.
I like how all the characters are flawed, as humans, even the kings, should be. Tyrion and Jon Snow, dwarf and bastard, Bran the cripple, and all the other "broken things" I love best. These characters, however physically deformed or socially cast out, aim to be more than kings by reaching for honor beyond their powers. There is so much to be learned from unique people, as well as from Tyrion the Imp's witty remarks and tongue-lashing.
The women are not be missed. Cersei proved irksome in her manipulative and diabolic ways. Catelyn who hated the Snow bastard earned respects from readers through her courage, both as a mother and warrior. Sansa, I pity, with her iron heart and pretense of sweetness (I wanted to see her mature into a courageous queen to defy and overthrow the king and his leagues; I pray she doesn't turn into another Lysa Arryn.) I am also excited to see what happens to Arya, boyish and courageous. Dany's character is yet to be unfold as she becomes a woman on fire.
I have to admit that I am in league with the geeks now who adore the series as well as the genius George R. R. Martin. But geeks are cool anyway. Four more books to go! ...more
**spoiler alert** The lovely title - Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - somehow kept up with the light yet exquisite coming-of**spoiler alert** The lovely title - Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - somehow kept up with the light yet exquisite coming-of-age story of two young teenagers trapped in their ecotones (I love how the transitory stage of getting to adulthood was likened to ecotone!)
Benjamin Saenz did not stick too much on flattery by dumping 80's brands, culture or nostalgic objects throughout the novel, but instead provided background mostly on the activities of that era and of the character's niche like stargazing, Los Lobos, menudo.
The characters were brought to light by capitalizing on their few traits - for instance, Mr Quintana is a smiley kind of person, so that when a tragic incident occurred, it is not too much hard to imagine that he is too depressed. This helped to focus the narration to Ari and Dante, as their characters progressed.
It has a very simple plot like most summer stories of the young age. The charm came from the sweet and funny friendship Ari and Dante struck. Along the way, their friendship is challenged by accidents and identity crisis, which helped them discover their own pains and secrets.
I can't help but think that this is a censored, light and younger version of Brokeback Mountain. It is so courageous of Benjamin Saenz to write this story (I praise him for it!) as acknowledged in the page of the book. The novel managed to deliver the beginnings of homosexuality and the joys and pains the teen has to go through.
The story has the usual teenage formula: smoking joints, summer swimming, driver's license, weight-lifting, cussing, drinking alcohol. Saenz further mixed elements: kissing boys, naked bathing in the rain, masturbation questions. The book is courageously and gorgeously written! ...more
Eleanor & Park isn't exactly my kind of book. I'd line it up with the Twilight series in my classification of good story - something you could reaEleanor & Park isn't exactly my kind of book. I'd line it up with the Twilight series in my classification of good story - something you could read through and left half-satisfied.
Thirty percent through E&P mostly outlined the kind of lives they both lived - their families, their situations, their ranks in school hierarchy of bullies and teenage punks, their hobbies. Too cliche.
I love the nostalgic sense the book brought with the 80's - U2, The Smiths, casette tapes, Watchmen, etc. The book banked though on too much mention of 80's brand like I'm leafing through magazine with half of it purely advertisements.
If not for my interests in comics and music, I would have been bored. I highly suspect that the idea of incorporating music or culture was inspired in one way or the other by 500 Days of Summer, Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist.
Plot-wise, I think that the two misfits in an extraordinary love (as marketed) was placed in too common grounds, not enough to particularly blossom into really weird kids having cute love affair (as it lacks unique anecdotes/situations to inspire one - though I love the idea of bus-walkman thing).
It is too common for Eleanor's type to be bullied (her redeeming value is her humor) and for Park to be an Asian and look unique in a crowd of whites - it's not too complicated! we've seen this before - does Glee ring a bell? Well at least I think Glee has better plots.
While the two undergo the step-by-step love formula: boy meets girl (vice-versa), girl/boy gets crazy, girl/boy leaves, become broken-hearted, ends either with moving on or getting back together, the idea of young love is irresistibly sweet and cute. I just thought Eleanor & Park needs a little more push to become uniquely written and smartly plotted. I sense that Rainbow held back so much.
I like the He said, She said style of writing and that it was set in the 80's, when cellphones aren't a thing yet. I like how it ended, though I think the tension came too late at the 90% of the novel. It leaves the reader (at least in my experience) wondering if pages were missing in the end.
Eleanor & Park is made for those who holds on to cute moments and reminiscent of their first puppy love and nostalgic of the 80's. ...more
Insurgent failed to sustain the excitement of the first book - Divergent. It failed to follow through on the development of the characters. It lost itInsurgent failed to sustain the excitement of the first book - Divergent. It failed to follow through on the development of the characters. It lost its potential to become an action-spy-suspense novel and also lost its brilliance to a more prominent young adult fiction like Hunger Games.
The first 60 percent of the book explored chaos after chaos, conflict after conflict, which Roth could have used to grow her characters. What Roth is good at is surprising readers after a long boring sequences then fail to sustain that surprise.
I would expect the movie to be more interesting than the book....more