I haven't come across a book this captivating in a long time. For someone who can be a little too dependent on her computer, this book was a saviour.I haven't come across a book this captivating in a long time. For someone who can be a little too dependent on her computer, this book was a saviour. I passed a lot of chances to turn on the computer or watch anything on tv for this book. And there were nights when I could only let go of reading when my eyes closed out of my control or when I realised I started reading the same sentence for five times because I lost concentration due to my lack of sleep.
The book grabs you and doesn't let go until you reach the very end. I have to congratulate Suzanne Collins for her simple yet remarkable writing skills here. It is the sense of continuity that urges you to keep reading non-stop that I think was a big success. It is very important for a writer to grasp the full interest of the reader and Suzanne Collins does this with no problems.
We follow the book through the point of view of the young girl, Katniss, who's forced to be a part of a brutal game, in her young sister's place, that's supposed to be the source of entertainment for the society. The plot seems familiar I'm aware, most might link it to Battle Royale, and it is familiar, true, but while reading it I've come to realise that it's also very different. We are talking about a tradition here, where the very brutal game is a part of the society's life, where young people's, the contestants are aged between twelve and eighteen, efforts to kill one another in a game where there can only be one survivor is ordinary, accepted. This reminded me of the time we live in, with so many reality shows about almost anything and where there are almost no rules and no limitations as to what to show. While reading this, which set supposedly in the future, it did not seem like a very far one. It wasn't very hard to think the happenings in the book could easily be true. And in most parts of the book, I found myself filled with rage as to how people reacted to the whole idea of Hunger Games, even the name suggests how horrible the whole concept is by referring to it as a mere game, whereas in other times I found mnyself taking sides and rooting for one or two of the characters, which suggests how used we are to such an occasion and how easily we could adapt to it.
I also found the characters very likeable, not too gullable, as someone else here mentioned how sometimes especially the female protagonist can be so oblivion to her surroundings. Here we have a strong girl, Katniss, with a certain sense of love for her young sister that she risks her life for her without a second of thought. She is also a good hunter, the only provider for the family after her father's death, which is a plus for the games. She sacrifices herself for her sister and is joined with the baker's boy, Peeta, who is also strong with a hint of more emotional if I may add. They're both thrown in to the arena where they not only have to fight against some really cruel competitors who have been trained their entire lives for the win, the occasional interference of the gamemakers when it becomes too boring for the audience due to the lack of deaths, but also with the emotional burden of having to kill each other when the time comes to it. It was easy to relate with these characters and root for them throughout the story.
There is probably so much more I want to say about this book, needless to say I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the trilogy, I would also recommend this book to everyone who's willing to give it a try....more
**spoiler alert** I've been meaning to read this for a while, I'm glad I finally did. A heartwarming story of Nobody Owens, Bod, who comes to live in**spoiler alert** I've been meaning to read this for a while, I'm glad I finally did. A heartwarming story of Nobody Owens, Bod, who comes to live in a graveyard raised by ghosts of people buried there and a mysterious man, his guardian, named Silas. I can't explain my love for Silas, my sympathy for Bod, and of course my enjoyment reading about the residents of the graveyard. It's a atory that tells you you can find family anywhere and with anyone. And I have to admit, something about this story got to me and by the end I felt a lump in my throat. When Bod was finally saying goodbye to his friends and family, the family who raised him in his fifteen years, I felt like I was the one saying goodbye to them and leaving the graveyard. I could never guess I'd have such love and sympathy for a life in a graveyard.
This is a book that is not too long, and yet has a much deeper meaning and messages in it than its size. I hope anyone who can would read this story, I really do....more
I read this second book so fast that it didn't spend much time in my "currently reading" list. Just like the first one of the series, this book is noI read this second book so fast that it didn't spend much time in my "currently reading" list. Just like the first one of the series, this book is no disappointment. At all. The character development keeps getting better, the plot pulls you in without effort, the continuity and pace of storytelling is still amazing. I honestly don't remember any book that pinned me to my couch until the very end like this one. Suzanne Collins is no doubt a wiz of the action, and all this book now has left me with is the anxiety of waiting for the final book of the trilogy....more
The plot was interesting enough when I first heard of it. And I thought I'd give it a try and I'm glad I did. It starts off as a cliché supernatural sThe plot was interesting enough when I first heard of it. And I thought I'd give it a try and I'm glad I did. It starts off as a cliché supernatural story about a girl who can see ghosts but quickly grows into a good action as well. It sure is a supernatural story, built around characters interesting and mysterious anough for you to care for them, and gradually becomes a thrilling action that leaves you wanting more.
Whan I finished reading it, I found myself looking through the local library records for the second book only to see it's already borrowed and I have to wait. I have to admit it was disappointing.
Overall, this was a very entertaining story, and even a bit scary for someone who's not keen on the idea of ghosts like me. And I'd definitely recommend it, the pace of the action and the urgency of the storytelling made it a good read....more
Just as well written as the previous one in the series. The story keeps developing, with new characters and new plots which are more than enough to keJust as well written as the previous one in the series. The story keeps developing, with new characters and new plots which are more than enough to keep you engaged. I really look forward to the next, and final I presume, book of the series. It's official now, I'm a sucker for this genre!...more
I have to admit my rating for this book has been shadowed by my failing to visualize the setting of the story. I always counted on my english to be goI have to admit my rating for this book has been shadowed by my failing to visualize the setting of the story. I always counted on my english to be good, since it's not my mother tongue, but somehow I had a hard time with the detailed descriptions. Perhaps it's because I'm dealing with some personal stuff at the moment and haven't been able to concentrate completely so I believe I'll have to read the translated version of this book to fully appreciate it....more
**spoiler alert** I don't care what some people think about clichés, in cases like this, I love them!
This is the last book in the supernatural Darkes**spoiler alert** I don't care what some people think about clichés, in cases like this, I love them!
This is the last book in the supernatural Darkest Powers trilogy and I enjoyed it a lot. The story picked up from where we left off in the second one -this is expected since it's told from first person- and the pace was great, the plot we already knew but still engaged me with all the twists and turns, the characters were all the same awesome people, and last but not least, the romance was just lovely.
We got some surprising news in this one. We found out that the project Chloe and the others are involved in is not the only one, which means there are other kids out there with supernatural powers and they set out to find them as well as hide from the bad guys. I loved the possibilities this offers ;)
I was so glad to see Kit, Simon and Derek's father, come into the picture, it was a long time coming, or expecting in my case. I knew I'd like the guy, but I really liked the guy. I wish we got a bit more with him.
Now, the biggest surprise for me was Tori. Being Simon's sister. Yeah. I kinda liked their bickering from before and I'm ashamed to say I rooted for those two a bit in the previous books. Now this bit of news put me in my place. I wish Tori would've found out about Kit being her father though, I would've loved to see both her and Simon's reactions to the news. That should've been priceless.
I continued to love Chloe. She's young but she's definitely a good heroine. The first person aspect was fitting in this story and her inner dialogues just added to my like for her. She's smart but she's not trying to be a hero either. She knows her limitations and gotta say, I loved her comparing herself to the heroines of horror flicks in dangerous situations. I found myself agreeing with her on many occasions.
And then there's Derek. Oh, Derek. Needless to say I loved that guy from the very beginning and was crazy-rooting for these two. I am happy to say they ended up together. Uber happy. Simon's a great guy, the sweetest and he was just perfect and all, but Derek was the one for Chloe. And I was happy to read Chloe admitting to herself she has a crush on Derek. Back to Derek. He finally got through his change and became a full wolf. Nice. I'm glad the guy had his break. The interactions with Chloe while in wolf form were adorable. How could anyone have thought this guy was dangerous? It turns out, sometimes the big bad wolf is the right one, girls!
There are some things that I kept wondering about the story, like who was the mysterious Mr StCloud, or what'll happen to bad guy team, or where's Rae, and will they ever find the other kids and whatever happened to them etc. This book ended like the beginning of another story. I don't know if we'll ever get another story of other people involved in the projects but it sure ended with the hint. I loved the characters in these ones though, I feel like it'd be cheating on them to read about other kids with the same situation :)
I have this perfect fantasy where Kelley Armstrong writes a sequel adult -yes, adult- series to this one where we get to see how Chloe and Derek -yes!- and Simon and the others do in their lives. Wouldn't it be awesome? Me thinks it would ;)
Overall, I loved this. And finished it way before I wrote this down here, I simply couldn't put it down, it was "one more chapter, they're short after all!" or "I'll just read till they leave this place" etc for me.
This book is the reason why I like young adult genre....more
I read this book to see if my sister would like it, she really liked the Twilight books and the reviews around here hinted that this series was just aI read this book to see if my sister would like it, she really liked the Twilight books and the reviews around here hinted that this series was just as good and even better than Twilight. Even though I haven't read and don't really have the intention to read, the Twilight books, this one I liked. My sister told me about Twilight, so I have and idea what it's about, and the whole idea of vampire in this book sounded much better and meaningful to me. Not to mention the characters were quite believable and strong, the romances were, if I may say, quite hot, and the story interesting. It managed to make me wonder about the rest. So I'd say I really liked this book, and I could read the rest of the series, and would definitely recommend to my sister....more
**spoiler alert** I'm fighting a runny nose and coughing while writing this review so it'll be a short one.
I gotta admit, I didn't quite like Rose in**spoiler alert** I'm fighting a runny nose and coughing while writing this review so it'll be a short one.
I gotta admit, I didn't quite like Rose in the previous book but I found that I actually did like her in this one. I see that she's becoming more mature for her age and coming to recognize her responsabilities better. She has a smartass nature but it doesn't bother me, in fact, I think it makes her all the more real. I like her friendship and close bond with Lissa, her rocky relationship with Dimitri and the more I know about her, the more I feel sorry for her and like her more. She's tough but also very vulnerable.
The book had fast pace that kept my mind occupied in my sick state. I loved the new addition, Adrian, and it tore me apart when Mason died. I really liked that guy, it was a very sad couple of pages for me, I'm still annoyed by his death. And the Rose reacted to his death was nicely written and added more to my dislike over his death.
Can't wait to move on to the next one. I'm really looking forward to knowing more about Rose's parents, if we ever find out more, and this Adrian, the other spirit user, and how all this change in the Moroi/Guardians/Strigoi war is going to take place....more
**spoiler alert** I have so much to say about this book, so many feelings claw their way up from inside me, anger, confusion, sadness. There is no way**spoiler alert** I have so much to say about this book, so many feelings claw their way up from inside me, anger, confusion, sadness. There is no way to describe this book with just one when I can hardly even name them.
I don't even know where to start. Whether I should write down about the characters, everyone individually, or the story, or the action, or the overwhelming emotions, or the brute violence. Maybe I'll start with the people and go from there, after all it is the one girl who was on fire that made this book.
Katniss, the girl on fire. I'm sure her character is well known by everyone by now, how she operates. She's a strong young girl in a world of violence where I guess her youth doesn't really count for anything. Because in her world children are plucked away from their families and forced to kill each other for others' enjoyment until only one survives but not really lives anymore.
It's been a while since I've read the previous book, but while reading this, bits and pieces came back to me, at least I knew where they left things off. The irreversable battle for power and freedom over all the districts. The purpose of ridding their world of the Hunger Games.
I think after the heat of the battle and the action subsided, we got to see the real Katniss behind in this book. The more vulnerable young girl forced to grow up, the one who has to deal with all the deaths and destruction on her consicence. But she coped well. She trembled but didn't break. I admired her determination about Snow because I know I would've been driven by the same purposes. I understood her constant struggle with herself, trying to reason everything around her, especially when it came to Peeta. But I was glad that, even though she did consider, even though she weighed the options, she didn't give up Peeta. Not that I thought she would. About halfway through the book I decided he really was the one thing that kept her afloat, that as opposed to a spirit so aflame like hers, she actually needed a gentle one.
Peeta, the boy with the bread. Peeta. There really is no good or right way I can describe completely just how much I adored this boy and his spirit. Because he truly had one. He was in love with a girl who wasn't sure of her own emotions, taken away from her, tortured, beaten, broken and yet he was put back together. I say 'put back' because I think if it wasn't for Katniss he really would've been too far gone.
I admit though I missed that boy from the previous books a bit in this one, even though it would be impossible to ask for him to stay the same after all he's been through. After all they've been through, no one is expected to stay the same.
He broke my heart. For a while I actually thought he was too far gone to ever be pulled back and at some point I even tried to make my peace with that because in such a gruesome story there could be no happy endings, no place in the future for the once gentle baker boy. I was wrong. Never have I been this happy about being wrong about a book.
Gale, the hunter. Because that's what he was. Up until this book I wasn't sure about how I felt about him because I didn't know much other than that he was Katniss' best friend and hunting partner. The one who knew her the most. He's changed as well. And I realized I came to like him. He burned with the same flame as Katniss, one of anger and vengeance and a hunger for freedom and he grew on me. By the end of the book I wished he was happy in District 2.
Finnick and Annie, the couple who never let their hands go. We didn't really get the chance to know Annie much but we knew Finnick loved her. And that's why I loved her. I think that tells more than enough for what one character can make anything happen. Just because of Finnick I wished this was a fairytale, where even the supporting man could have his happily ever after. The parts where they were described though, their love for each other, were few of the most beautiful parts of the book.
Haymitch, the mentor, ally, friend. I consider Haymitch as close to a friend Katniss had apart from Gale and Peeta. He had his own agenda, he kept secrets and was missing in general in the book but I think for the parts when he was around he was really close to a friend. Someone for Katniss to trust in this mess. On some level. Until some point.
And all the other people, Katniss' mother, her sister Prim, the rebels, the Avoxes, the styling team, all the remaining allies. Such heartbroken ends for some of them. I couldn't stop the tears forming for Prim and when Peeta wanted to plant the primroses I loved him all over again.
I'm sure I'll later remember something else I wanted to include in this review but forgot now, and I know it's been long but to try to tell the beauty and the horror of this story overhwhelmed me. I think this should be taken as a message as to how easily we are on the brink of making all the wrong choices. Because the most horrible thing about this series is that I can see this happen and that it doesn't shock me. And if I live in a world where a plot like Hunger Games' doesn't shock me, then we really do need to be scared. Plutarch was right about one thing, we really are 'fickle, stupid beings with poor memories and a great gift for self-distraction'.
If Peeta and Katniss were here now, and they asked, "Our story will forever hold a place within you. Real or not real?"
I'm giving this 5 stars for its atmosphere, the way it made me feel all through the book, the way it's told and the characters.
When I started and realI'm giving this 5 stars for its atmosphere, the way it made me feel all through the book, the way it's told and the characters.
When I started and realized that it was written in both of the characters' points of view I admit I was a bit disappointed because I didn't think the story would grip me that way. I was wrong. This story, as it turns out, cannot be told any differently. It was essential for the readers to know both sides of the story, both ends of this beautiful love story. Sure, this is about werewolves, but it's mostly a love story. And a beatiful one too.
Grace, attacked and bitten by wolves six years ago, is mesmerized by wolves, specifically one yellow-eyed that keeps appearing in the woods just outside her home. For six years they watch each other, and Grace longs for something she doesn't know. And then one day she meets a yellow-eyed boy who reminds her of a certain wolf she watched for six years. The story picsk up from there, they meet, they fall in love, they realize they've been in love for years and they try to fight an inevitable fate.
Rememeber I said atmosphere? From the very beginning this felt like a sad story. I'm not talking about the ending, don't think I'm spoiling anything here, I'm talking about the beginning. It started with breaking my heart because of how Grace has lived her life after her attack. Because of the way she longed for something she didn't know until she found it. Because of Sam, the yellow-eyed wolf that longed for Grace. The boy who had more human in him than wolf, the boy who desperately clung to his humanity for her. The silent way they lived their love. And how they have always been in love, for six years when he watched her in another form, from another reality. When they were together, I felt like I was with them on a friday night and I was the third wheel, but they let me stay with them anyway because they're kind hearted people like that. They had such a bond that I felt was unbreakable. They were so connected, so relaxed and 'themselves' around each other that I envied them. It made me feel so warm inside and so sad at the same time for several reasons that you should read on your own.
This was a good book. A book that made me wish to sit down with a cup of hot chocolate. A book that managed to make me shiver in these hot summer days....more
What a book. I can definitely tell this book turned out to be so much more than I expected. What I expected was a nice, interesting fantasy novel, butWhat a book. I can definitely tell this book turned out to be so much more than I expected. What I expected was a nice, interesting fantasy novel, but what I got was a fast-paced, very well written adventure of a strong young woman, sparkled with magic.
The story's told by Yelena, a young woman imprisoned in a dungeon for the murder of the son of the man who adopted her. And this is where we meet her, while she's taken from dungeon to noose, she's given a choice of either the immediate death by the noose or the eventual one by becoming the food taster for the Commander. So she chooses the possible future death. She's taken in by Valek, the Commander's consultant and personal security chef, to be educated in the arts of poison.
First person narration always helps the story flow, adds a fast pace to it and definitely enhances the involvement of the reader when done right. And this one was done beautifully. I was able to connect with Yelena immediately, backed her choices, good or bad, I had unlimited entry to her mind. She was a strong yet vulnerable young woman who'd been dealt a bad hand of fate but in the end to my delight she was able to turn things over and find a path, a purpose that will hopefully lead to happiness.
As much as Yelena was an open book for the reader, Valek, the male protagonist, was definitely not. He was a closed box for quite a while in the book, his intentions unclear at times. That didn't stop me from liking his character though, he had a softer side that he hid well in the beginning only to be exposed by Yelena later on.
The story was beautiful, the parts with Yelena's education and experience of posion testing were well described and quite interesting.
The supporting characters, especially the 'power twins' Ari and Janco were a treat, the duo stole my heart right away.
A story of a path filled with bumps for Yelena and far from over yet, I can't wait to read her whole adventure and see where it leads her....more
**spoiler alert** I thought about it a lot after finishing this book. Even while I was reading it got into my dreams. My mind was so full of the horri**spoiler alert** I thought about it a lot after finishing this book. Even while I was reading it got into my dreams. My mind was so full of the horrible future Neal Shusterman drew for the readers that it was hard to focus on anything else. I don't know which is more disturbing, the idea of people being ok with cutting children, the supposed "future" of ours, into bits and pieces and feeling completely justified about it, or that I could actually believe it might happen some day.
The future Neil Shusterman describes is truly a horrible one. The world has changed, the rules are different. In this future, adults have the right to "unwind" their children from the age of thirteen until they reach eighteen which is the legal border to become an adult. I can't even put it into words how parents can do this to their own children when they're too much for them to handle.
There are many, many issues addressed in this book. Pro-life, pro-choice being the most obvious one. Then there's organ donation and terrorism. Many moral issues to think about. And I mean it, I think people should read this book and really think about where "now" is going.
One of the most horrific experiences of reading for me was in this book when we get to witness a kid being unwound. It was hard to get through that part of the book, honest. I felt like I was reading with something heavy sitting on my chest crushing my lungs.
And surely I won't forget the parts with the unwound kids, how they were somehow still there, since they're supposedly never dead, only "divided". Especially when Tyler was begging to his parents for forgiveness and not being unwound. The worst part is to know they probably did it for some serious problem Tyler was having they just didn't fully understand and it scared them. And can never forget Harlan. I admit I was in tears when his parents "brought him back together".
The ending was good too, after all, this is a young adult book, but I'm glad it all ended well, if not at all good, for the main characters. That they were able to dodge the unwinding, paying their own prices for that. And I'm glad it didn't end with the whole issue finally being over and done with and they didn't live happily ever after, that it wasn't finalised in a couple of summarized pages saying the unwinding was over forever. In the end they still had a long way to go, they still had a fight ahead of them, a fight with no violence but with existence....more