Fantastical! A little gruesome. A fairy tale - and not the Disney kind - for grown-ups. A book where an angry little boy (one who can "hear" books and...moreFantastical! A little gruesome. A fairy tale - and not the Disney kind - for grown-ups. A book where an angry little boy (one who can "hear" books and their conversations) from WWII Germany is transported into a dangerous other land as he seeks his dead mother. In this land, his thoughts and nightmares become a dangerous reality and all the books he's ever read imprint onto the land. (For example, a book he read about communism comes out in the tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The dwarfs like to talk about oppression and capitalism, etc.) (less)
I was disappointed in this book - it wasn't as funny or witty as the other Thursday Next books, it seemed really forced, and it really ventured more i...moreI was disappointed in this book - it wasn't as funny or witty as the other Thursday Next books, it seemed really forced, and it really ventured more into the world of science fiction and time travel. The other books don't take themselves seriously - this one seemed to be on the verge...The series was wrapped up so neatly, but this one left off wide open for another one.(less)
What was an interesting concept (coded manuscripts discovered in an old book destroyed by fire that could lead to a new, never discovered Shakespeare...moreWhat was an interesting concept (coded manuscripts discovered in an old book destroyed by fire that could lead to a new, never discovered Shakespeare play) was ruined by the pretentiousness of the author. He spent the entire book trying to prove how smart he was rather than focusing drawing readers into a good story. I don't really care how smart he thinks he is. (less)
While this one really could go either way - historical romance or fantasy - I decided to pick fantasy because it was about drakons (or dragons). In Th...moreWhile this one really could go either way - historical romance or fantasy - I decided to pick fantasy because it was about drakons (or dragons). In The Smoke Thief an ancient race has the ability to pass as human, shift into smoke, control minds when necessary, and, of course, turn into dragons that soar through the sky. Sometimes, some of the drakons run from their small isolated community, but they are always captured, returned, and killed as punishment. When the drakon council hears reports of a Smoke Thief they know it is one of their own. They set off to catch the runner, but find out it's a woman of great power making her the new alpha of the group. (No woman has been able to turn for years.) What follows is a love story as she battles her old demons and Kit - the male alpha and leader of the tribe - falls more and more in love with her. It was an okay story, but I probably won't be reading any more in the series.(less)
Lots of twists, lots of turns. Expect the unexpected (because what else should you expect with Orson Scott Card). It makes you think and hope that our...moreLots of twists, lots of turns. Expect the unexpected (because what else should you expect with Orson Scott Card). It makes you think and hope that our world could never come to become like it is in the world of this book.
The premise of the book is that the Earth was taken by surprise by an alien race (they named the Buggers) who completely destroyed their fighting force in two difference invasions. Military leaders throughout the world banded together to create an elite force of military leaders who could defeat the buggers should another invasion come. They pulled from children, took them from their families, trained them from an early age in a space station school, and hoped upon hope a superior military presence would save them. Ender Wiggins ended up being their hope and their savior all by the time he was only 11 years old.(less)
WOW! I loved this book!!!! LOVED IT. When I first started reading, I thought it was going to be a tedious read without any real dialogue reading lette...moreWOW! I loved this book!!!! LOVED IT. When I first started reading, I thought it was going to be a tedious read without any real dialogue reading letter after letter. However, very early on I realized that the writing style pulled me in. I quickly became engrossed in the lives of Kate and Cecelia living in a post Napoleonic England where magic is commonplace. This book was a little bit of everything I love - fantasy, magic, romance, mystery, suspense....all rolled in to one. Even though, this is classified as a young adult book, it certainly rose above the teenage angst present in so many YA books and was an enjoyable read. I would recommend this one to EVERYONE!!!! Reading the author's description at the end of the development of this book (played first as a letter's game) was an added bonus that (I think) described some of the inconsistencies or inadequate descriptions in the plot (why were Kate and Cecilia's aunts looking after them, for example?) However, these points were so minor that they didn't bother me at all. I can't wait to read the 2nd book and I hope it's as good as the first.(less)
Okay - I had this on my "reading" shelf for a little over a month which just shows how much I DIDN'T like this book!!! But...I think I need to preface...moreOkay - I had this on my "reading" shelf for a little over a month which just shows how much I DIDN'T like this book!!! But...I think I need to preface this review by saying: I did not want to read this book on principle because Paolini expanded into 4 books instead of the promised trilogy. (I hate it when book series go on and on and on and on...) It seems to me that once you bridge that 3 books to 4 books it's only a hop skip and a jump away from 5 books or 6.
Then some friends said it was actually pretty good. My brother lent it to me (so I didn't actually have to spend my money) and I read some interviews where Paolini said, "I didn't want the story to suffer, etc., etc." Well the story suffered all right. It suffered from 763 pages of descriptive hogwash not all the important to the overall plot of the book. I would have preferred to have book 3 and 4 combined into just book 3 without all the dry descriptiveness
At one point I did get hooked into the story. Around page 700. Will I read the next one? No. I don't really care at this point what happens to any of the characters in this series.(less)
A cute premise if you're a cat lover - short stories about the underworld that cats exist in...from their politics to fighting evil forces to their se...moreA cute premise if you're a cat lover - short stories about the underworld that cats exist in...from their politics to fighting evil forces to their secret love lives. However, the stories fell short for me. (less)
A book that takes place in a make believe land the feels very much like Elizabethan England. The main character (Will) is an actor who is suddenly nam...moreA book that takes place in a make believe land the feels very much like Elizabethan England. The main character (Will) is an actor who is suddenly named an enemy of the people by the ruling empire. As he runs, he is saved by "adventurers" and is forced to join their ranks. As he begrudgingly joins them on their journey to protect 3 far away lands, he comes to become a valued part of their number. A magical and fantastical tale - I liked this one a lot.(less)
This was a completely unexpected read - one that I expected to enjoy but not one that I expected to love! What was especially surprising to me was tha...moreThis was a completely unexpected read - one that I expected to enjoy but not one that I expected to love! What was especially surprising to me was that after reading the first 2 chapters...I didn't like the book at all. But it sucked me in and I loved it! I liken it to the first time I watched Moulin Rouge. I spend 1/2 the movie thinking - what the heck is this? What the heck is going on? But by the end I was crying my eyes out absolutely loving every minute of the movie. It was sort of like that with this book - except the book ended so abruptly in the middle of the story I wasn't crying but dying to find out more. (I now know it ended so abruptly b/c the initial publication wasn't put out in 2 volumes but one...so volume 1 and vol 2 were part of the same book.)
Okay, into the book. First of all, I don't even know how to classify this book. It seems like historical fiction and it reads like a Victorian novel should. However, it's not really as there are no discernible dates nor recognizable historical figures. It's part scifi/fantasy and part mystery suspense.
It all starts when Celeste Temple receives a note from her finance breaking off the engagement without any word of explanation. Rather than acting like a scorned woman (although she does for a day or two) she decides to discover the reason why and uncovers a sinister plot.
The most unusual thing about this book is it's organization. Rather than chapters it's organized into parts and told from the perspectives of the 3 main characters. The first part by Celeste Temple, the second by Cardinal Change (an assassin who also stumbles into the plot) and the third part by "The Surgeon" (who - you guessed it also stumbles into the plot). By the last part of this book, all three converge and begin working together. What is so unusual is that each part picks up where the other left off not bothering with tedious rehashing or retelling to same exact story but from another point of view. It took me a little while to adapt to this flow - BUT I loved it.
One downfall of this book is the sheer amount of characters beyond the main three. There are so many on the periphery that it's hard to keep them all straight (and to be honest, even at the end I'm not sure I have straight who is who).
I'm looking forward to reading the 2nd volume. In fact I'm heading to the library right now to pick it up!!(less)