This was okay. I never read it as a kid and probably would have enjoyed it more at that time. I found Jamie to be kind of an annoying character, pushi...moreThis was okay. I never read it as a kid and probably would have enjoyed it more at that time. I found Jamie to be kind of an annoying character, pushing his wiser friend to break the rules and do stupid things. Some of the hunting scenes were needlessly emotional (e.g. drawing the action out, describing the reactions of the prey etc.). I just read The Hunger Games and though there was a lot of hunting in that one too, the author tells rather than shows. I liked all the inventiveness and survival description. Of course, there was some sexism (things described as "women's work" etc) and it utterly failed the Bechdel test. But what can one expect with a typical Boys' Own Adventure type story from 1956?(less)
A typical Goldy mystery. She happens to be nearby when someone is murdered, is catering parties attended by all the people involved or who might be su...moreA typical Goldy mystery. She happens to be nearby when someone is murdered, is catering parties attended by all the people involved or who might be suspects in the murder (when she's not going to church with them)--and why is it that we never meet any of these people in previous books? It's like the population of Aspen Meadow completely changes with every book, except for the main characters. Tom and the rest of the police do little but chauffeur Goldy around. And Goldy gets into a car accident, falls down a mountain into a creek, and gets knocked out and almost suffocated in the snow all in one day but she just dusts herself off, has another gallon of espresso and caters another party. Oh, and steals a car. With out any good reason and no consequence. So why do I bother? Completely mindless and I like the descriptions of the food. I think there's one left in the series to go.(less)
First and foremost, this book was very long. Every time I thought the story was gearing up for a climax, I'd look to see how much further I had to go...moreFirst and foremost, this book was very long. Every time I thought the story was gearing up for a climax, I'd look to see how much further I had to go and discover that I was barely at the halfway point, or slowly approaching the 60% mark. It could easily have been split in half, making the trilogy a quartet. I liked the story, mostly, but it was very, very violent (especially for a kids' book). I didn't feel much for the characters, possibly because of the narrative style--we rarely got much exposure to the way the characters were feeling and thinking about. Also, most of the characters were literally characters in a story--with that extra step of distance, I often felt unconcerned about the deaths or suffering--ought we really to care about the fairies murdered for their blood or the children murdered by the Milksop, when we know they're just figments of Fonoglio's or Orpheus's imagination and "extras" at that? I'm kind of meh about the ending: (view spoiler)[Orpheus gets away (which sucks unless the author means to leave an opening for a sequel). Mo, Reesa, and Meggi (also Fonoglio, Eleanor and Darius) stay and presumably live out their lives in the Ink World. Really? Don't they miss the real world with all of its indoor plumbing, washing machines, adequate food supply, human rights (including at least attempts at gender equality), and antibiotics? Don't get me wrong--it would be fun to go and visit but to live there permanently? I don't think so. (hide spoiler)](less)
A nice bit of history about the men and women who dreamed of and put together the Oxford English Dictionary over the course of a few decades. I love d...moreA nice bit of history about the men and women who dreamed of and put together the Oxford English Dictionary over the course of a few decades. I love dictionaries, the OED in particular. I have its little brother the CanOx2 sitting on my desk right now. I like reading about scholars too, having once dreamed myself of being one of them. Winchester does a good job of balancing the history of the bureaucratic and bibliogony side of things and the biographies of the people involved, making for an entertaining read.
It made me want to buy a copy of the dictionary and read it from cover to cover to cover...(less)