The reason Ms Harper won a Pulitzer Prize is because this book is simply amazing. Full of humor and heartachReview original posted on Absurdly Nerdly.
The reason Ms Harper won a Pulitzer Prize is because this book is simply amazing. Full of humor and heartache, the reader watches as a young girl grows up in a very very southern town in Alabama in the 1930s.
Her father, Atticus Finch, puts on a masterful defense of his client and while I find law stuff fascinating in general, I think most people would agree that even the mundane bits of the trial are interesting in Lee Harper’s capable hands. Atticus is a master sorry teller because Harper is herself.
I enjoyed the voice acting of Sissy Spacek. She has a wonderful listing southern accent that rings true. But her children’s voices are hardly distinguishable. While the country kids have decent country accents, Scout and Jim’s voices are hard to tell apart, and they do a great deal of the talking. But with the wonderful written words of Harper guiding the story, I didn’t have trouble following along except a handful of times....more
This review first appeared on AbsurdlyNerdly, you can go to the link to read the full review.
I’ve had my palm read twice. The first time was an elderThis review first appeared on AbsurdlyNerdly, you can go to the link to read the full review.
I’ve had my palm read twice. The first time was an elderly black woman Willie Jean, a self proclaimed psychic. She lived in a huge store front where she gave readings and lived in a built in loft in the back. Her house was full of stuff. Mostly yellowing newspapers and garbage. One summer she was hospitalized for a time and a group from the neighborhood went through her house and cleaned it up so that when she got back she wouldn’t get some kind of infection. I still have paint splatter on a pair of my jeans that are from helping paint the kitchen walls yellow and Willie Jean’s.
I was visiting my Mom in Chicago, before I moved out here, and we went over to visit with her and bring her food. I was sitting next to her on the couch and she kept eyeing me with interest. Without warning she snatched up my hand and pressed her fingers into my palm. I was a tad startled and my mother just explained that Willie Jean read people by the …vibratations?… feeling their palms. I just wondered if I was supposed to pay for a reading I didn’t really want.
What did she tell me? “You have a sweet soul, but you have a lot of learning about life to do.” I was 21 at the time, and none of this came as a surprise.
The second time I had my palm read, it was also against my wishes. I must send out some kind of energy that entrances people who like to read palms, I really don’t know. I was working with this . . . quirky guy Danny (honestly, quirky is the nicest way to talk about him. I have other Danny stories that are far more ridiculous than this) a scrawny white guy who wore shirts that were two sizes too big and was trying to make it in the acting business. He asked to read my palm. I told him, No thank you. Several weeks later he grabbed my hand and told me that my “creative line” was really strong and curved sharply. That I should watch out because I had an overactive imagination. Again, not much of a surprise to me.
Danny also once tried to rearrange my aura. He literally was pulling at the air around my head until I told him to stop. I said I wanted my aura the way it was. That I was contemplating something and that just because he wanted my aura to be brighter and happier didn’t mean I did and he should leave it alone. (Ask me some other time about the birthday sex conversation I had with him.) Oh Danny.
I guess Richard Mayhew never had these experiences with quirky people when he was younger because when an old woman reads his palm one day and tells him that his life will begin with Door, he is slightly freaked out and fails to listen to her.
Richard Mayhew is kind of an Everyman. His life takes a sharp turn toward the weird and he falls down the rabbit hole. At the bottom of that hole is a deep well of water and it takes him a while, but eventually Richard learns to swim among the treacherous waters. I like Richard’s transformation across the story, it is subtle, but by the end Richard has been changed by his adventures. All he wants is to get back to his normal life, but in the end he discovers he isn’t so normal himself. The girl he meets is in all kinds of trouble and drags Richard along with her. Door is strong, smart, and cunning. She also uses people to get what she wants. But in a straightforward kind of way, that I must applaud her forthright attitude and actions. She gets stuff done, she makes the moves on the chessboard she needs to, and she fights for what she wants. The side characters in this book are just as delightful, and every single person serves a purpose to move the story in a unique direction.
Gaiman’s prose and storytelling are masterful.I also like how Gaiman writes stories that discuss greater human themes in subtle and engaging ways. Neverwhere is about the people who fall through the cracks of society and gives them their own world and universe. Humanizing the homeless man sitting on the street corner and showing us how we fail to see all of humanity as we pass by it. He does this without preaching, he does it with out pointing it out, he just makes his comments about society fall at the right moment from the right person onto the page of his story....more
This is the fourth book in Scott Westerfeld's series, The Uglies. However, this book is from the perspective of Aya a fifteen year-old Extra living inThis is the fourth book in Scott Westerfeld's series, The Uglies. However, this book is from the perspective of Aya a fifteen year-old Extra living in Japan. Tally Youngblood shows up as a character in this book and the reader is given the continuing story of Tally, Shay, and David's journey to keep the earth safe from destructive Uglies, Pretties, and Crumblies; but, the main story is Aya's quest to find face fame through Kicking.
Imagine a world where Facebook status is the economic system under a meritocracy. Everyone's skintenna keeps a continuous flow up updated statuses and as someone gains popularity they increase their merits and this in turn determines where they can live and what they can buy. For those who are Extras, people on the fringe of society who haven't made it far up the face fame ladder, they can always earn extra merits doing the jobs no one wants to do in a society free of the Pretties brain lesions. Aya is a Kicker, a new term for reporter, and wants to earn fame through exposing the Sly Girls. Sly Girls are a clique, an urban legend, until Aya goes under cover to join their group hoping to get footage of them in action. Nothing is true, unless you can prove it with video. But as Aya infiltrates the group and discovers what it means to be free of the feeds, she begins to question the wisdom of kicking this story just for more face fame. As something is Kicked, other people re-examine the evidence and then re-kick the story. The wisdom of the crowd determining what must be true. But as Aya discovers, "[s]ometimes the wisdom of the crowd was just so much noise." (pg 230)Then, something unexpected happens, Aya is determined to find the truth and more face fame, but discovers that sometimes one quest can overshadow the other.
I thought this book was a fitting end to Westerfeld's incredible story of a dystopian future where the government had control until the people took it back. I found the story line of Aya interesting, the concept of face fame fitting with today's Facebook frenzy, and was intrigued with Westerfeld's notion of how each City contains elements of sameness with the other Cities, but also carries it's own unique flavor based on the history of the place, here Japan. ...more
I read Lock In by John Scalzi via audible. This was my first Scalzi read and I was not disappointed. It is a well written, well researched, and well cI read Lock In by John Scalzi via audible. This was my first Scalzi read and I was not disappointed. It is a well written, well researched, and well crafted story. I also really enjoyed listening to Wil Wheaton who narrated the story.
There are so many wonderful things to say about Scalzi’s Lock In, that it is hard to pick a place to start. The premise of the book is based on a mutating virus which produces something other than zombies. People who are locked into their bodies unable to move or express themselves in any meaningful way as the result of contracting Haden’s. The locked in people are eventually given a way to roam the world, through the use of personal vehicles that look like C-3POs, called Threeps. How awesomely nerdy is that?! What I also really enjoyed was how detailed the story behind the Haden’s Syndrome was. It is explained enough in Lock In to further the story, but if you are a science nerd then read the novella Locked In which goes into even more detail on the growth and mutation of a completely made up disease!
Scalzi creates a believable, interesting, and ultimately thought provoking world centered on a disease that has infiltrated how the world views technology, health care, and a budgeting crisis. If you enjoy well written narratives about the twisting paths of a murder mystery, check out Lock In.
Quentin finds himself shunned from the one place he dreamed about his entire life, and he survives it. More, he becomes who he always tried to be, somQuentin finds himself shunned from the one place he dreamed about his entire life, and he survives it. More, he becomes who he always tried to be, someone who faces his trials with courage, intelligence, and sometimes maturity. But mostly, he finds himself. Quentin has actually learned from his life experiences. I love when characters grow and become who you hope they will become.
Plum, a senior at Brakebills, finds herself in the middle of an adventure at Quentin’s side While Quentin’s journey is well on its way, her’s is just beginning. I liked their mentor/mentee relationship. It was a nice break from romantic relationships, but just as meaningful and engaging. Plus, Plum is a great character and I really liked what she brought to the series. In some ways she reminded me of me, though I’m not into pranking people. But I do always have a plan, and it usually goes about as well and Plum’s do.
While Fillory is still a huge part of the story, Quentin and Plum’s quest and their magical treasure hunt adds an element of creativity and fun to the novel that I really enjoyed. The magic in The Magician’s gniverse never gets old, or boring. Grossman adds new and interesting twists that make sense with the continuity of the universe but add delightful touches to an already entertaining world.
But my favorite aspect of this series is that it is not always light and happy, that darkness pervades not just the antagonist side, but the protagonist side as well. Quentin is not perfect, nobody is perfect. Plum suffers from depression and mood swings and the desire for something more, which leads her to make unwise choices. Magic doesn’t always help the characters, some times it just makes things harder. Real life in all its glory and sadness spills itself across the pages and that is the beauty of Grossman’s characters. Not that they have magic and spells, but that they have life, and they live it.
I really enjoy the otherness of and strange mystical adventures in The Raven Cycle Series. What makes this book stand out from other Young Adult fictiI really enjoy the otherness of and strange mystical adventures in The Raven Cycle Series. What makes this book stand out from other Young Adult fiction is this all encompassing love for each other that the characters feel and live even as their lives are turned around and around with the mythical search Gansey is determined to solve and conquer and understand. Since they want that for him, that want it for themselves as well, and the unit stands firm against grey men and assassination attempts.
While I really enjoyed the continuing adventures of the Raven Boys and Blue, since I read the first two books in hardcover I had the voices of the characters already set in my head and so the voices that the narrator, Will Patton, used were not my own and that threw me. I reconciled most of them except for his version of Blue which was really different than my own.
The third installment of The Raven Boys Cycle continues to intrigue and mystify. While Stiefvater weaves a tale that is its own throughout the book, more mysteries are created than solved and pathways are taken that I never expected. I love this series for its characters, its setting, and its mythology. The interwoven roads are leading somewhere spectacular and I can’t wait to discover what the journey brings.
The second book in The Raven Cycle series is a lot darker and dangerous than its predecessor. Ronan takes a bigger part in The Dream Thieves as he becThe second book in The Raven Cycle series is a lot darker and dangerous than its predecessor. Ronan takes a bigger part in The Dream Thieves as he becomes a master of his special gift, pulling real items from his dreams. More of his background is revealed and the reasons behind the way Ronan interacts with the world begins to make a little more sense.
But all of the characters share the lime light, and that is what makes this series great. The depth of feeling and emotional connection that develops from the reader is not just because of the awesome mythical story line that arcs over the series, but because the characters are so real, and at the same time, bigger than life. You end up rooting for all of them, because they all have the potential for greatness even though at the same time you can see all their flaws and why that potential may never be reached.
Blue is one of my favorite female protagonist. Like most of us, she is trying to find her tribe, the place that she fits. When she finds those people, the people she can be her different self around, her connection to the group changes over time and she has to keep revisiting how she fits with them. Life is not static and Stiefvater shows how this plays out in Blue’s life.
I really love this series. In fact, I think I will have to go back and reread it, because I’m sure I’m missing some of the smaller details that get lost in the overall thrill of the story. Stiefvater has a way with the supernatural, with the telling of it, with the reality of it, that makes her own work magical.
Absurdly Nerdly I am a nerd, blogger, and Whovian who enjoys practicing my stand-up comedy on the unsuspecting public.MenuSkip to content HOME REVIEWS 30 Absurdly Nerdly I am a nerd, blogger, and Whovian who enjoys practicing my stand-up comedy on the unsuspecting public.MenuSkip to content HOME REVIEWS 30 DAYS OF THANKFUL ABOUT ME CONTACT ME BOOK REVIEW: YOU AND I, ME AND YOU DECEMBER 3, 2014 BY JAMI ZEHR You and I, Me and You, is the third book in a series my MaryJanice Davidson. You can read my review of the first book and the second book. There will be some slight spoilers of the previous two books, so you are warned.
you and i me and you
Summary from maryjanicedavidson.net
The final book in Davidson’s laugh-out-loud trilogy featuring an unconventional FBI agent who finds love in the most unexpected places. Cadence (and her sisters) has moved in with Patrick and everything is more than she could have ever dreamed. Except why does the dreamy Dr. Gallo keep popping up unexpectedly in her fantasies? When her pleasantly steady love life suddenly starts looking pretty darn shaky, Cadence and her sisters find themselves knee-deep in a new case that brings the escaped Threefer Killers back onto the scene. The stakes are higher, the danger more real, the hijinks more hilarious, and the love and passion are more delicious in this final book of an unforgettable trilogy.
Candace has been diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder. Her “sisters” as she calls them, the other personalities that reside in her same body, both help and hinder Candace as she works for a special department of the FBI which reasons that the best way to catch a sociopath is a sociopath. Candace is working with a therapist to co-exist with her personalities so that they are not so much separate identities but facets of one personality. This way the alternative personalities don’t feel threatened and try to take over the main personality and Candace actually starts to heal from the trauma of her childhood. While working through her past family issues and trying to learn how to live with her boyfriend, Candace must also catch a trio of serial killers.
Even a brief description of the plot line reveals that Davidson has a quirky sense of humor. I enjoy how this plays throughout each book and the series. While there is a lot of dark areas of Candace’s past, Davidson deals with those issues with research, sincerity, and humor. While there are some funny moments, Davidson has done her research into personality disorders and shows how they interact with the world in a real way. I also like how the people with personality disorders are getting help from a therapist and a place to work. A lot of fantasy and scifi books and series have people with a lot of issues that never get help for those issues. Here, Davidson uses Candace’s recovery and growth as the driving force in the series arc. Well done I say, well done.
If you like reading strange quirky humorous novels with a science fiction bent, about people with personality disorders catching serial killers than give this series a try.
I downloaded The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (as read by the author himself) via Audible with a free credit. I’m quite a fan of GaimanI downloaded The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (as read by the author himself) via Audible with a free credit. I’m quite a fan of Gaiman, so when I was searching for an audio book I am always drawn to his stories and discovered this one. You can read my full review at Absurdly Nerdly
I started The Ocean at the End of the Lane and immediately found myself drawn to this strange otherworldly tale, at times scary and intense, always imaginative and all consuming.
This is not a book to try to fall asleep to.
Like his other stories, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is full of strange mythologies interwoven with such relatable characters that I was pulled into the story, sucked in, and had to fight to find my way out again. Though the main part of the story happens in a man’s past when he is quite young, it is not a story for children. At the same time, Gaiman is able to capture the voice of a young boy, reminding me of how I used to view the world, that I began to recall my own childhood, well, at least all the scary moments of growing up.
As I’ve come to expect from Gaiman, his prose is wonderful and wonderfully read by himself. The pacing of Gaiman’s writing is beyond compare and I never step outside the story to wonder what will happen because I am always entranced by what is happening, in that moment. Some times so engulfed in the story that I can’t sleep. Gaiman has such an amazing talent for voice acting that I have come to love the stories he reads himself.
This is a story to experience. So, go out there and find your experience. Buy a copy, listen to the audiobook, fall in love with Gaiman just a little bit more....more
While I really liked the first two books in the series, I am enthralled with the third book. It is of epic proporOriginally review on Absurdly Nerdly.
While I really liked the first two books in the series, I am enthralled with the third book. It is of epic proportions and story telling might. This is definitely a series that needs to be read in order or you will get lost. In fact I had not read Days of Blood & Starlight in quite a while and I had a bit of trouble in the beginning catching up to the story line, but I soon did and listened every chance I got.
What I love about the series are all the amazing and strong female characters that are quite a bit different from each other, that lean on each other for support instead of back stabbing each other, and go forth into the universe with their own path to walk, not because they are chasing after a boy. Though there are quite a few complex male characters as well, and the story does have its romances which play into the paths that the female characters choose for themselves.
Also, I’m in love with the voice over actor, Khristine Hvam. She is simply wonderful and I wish I had read all of the books via audiobook just to hear her say the words and work the character voices and accents. She told the story beautifully and in a captivating manner. Gah! If it wasn’t being automatically returned to the library tomorrow and the second book in my queue due back in two days, I would listen to it again! In fact, I think I need to hunt down some other series that she has read…… OK. Getting back to the task at hand.
The Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy is a wonderful story full of otherworldly creatures, but centered around universal themes of love, betrayal, life, death, rebirth, and hope. If you enjoy stories with strong female characters and interesting world building, check out this trilogy. And if you like audiobooks or want to give them a try I would highly recommend the audio version of this series....more
I'm a huge fan of dystopian futures, and so I figured I would like this first book in Scott Westerfeld's The Uglies series. I was right. This is the bI'm a huge fan of dystopian futures, and so I figured I would like this first book in Scott Westerfeld's The Uglies series. I was right. This is the beginning of a great series, set in a world where everyone is made pretty at the age of 16, so that nobody has to worry about being an Ugly any more. Tally is the main protagonist in this book, an Ugly about to turn 16, whose greatest enjoyment in life is Tricking. This book is not only an intriguing take of adventure, but it is also a social commentary on what it means to be beautiful, inside and out. Filled with such gems as, "History would indicate that the majority of people have always been sheep," Westerfeld brings brilliance and charm to this story that makes it a must read. ...more
The Raven Boys follows the story of Blue and four boys from a local prep school set in the Virginia nowhere. Blue, daughter to a psychic, goes with heThe Raven Boys follows the story of Blue and four boys from a local prep school set in the Virginia nowhere. Blue, daughter to a psychic, goes with her “aunt” to the corpse road on St. Marks Eve as amplifier for her psychic aunt who sits on a wall drawing a strange symbol waiting for the soon to be dead people to walk down the path. Every St. Marks Eve those people who will be dead within the next year appear as ghosts traveling the corpse road and Blue’s family takes down names to tell clients if they are soon to die. Blue never sees any of them herself, merely an energy amp, she is tasked with writing down the names and waits for her aunt to be finished. But this fateful St. Marks Eve (sorry, I couldn’t help myself) she sees a ghost, a boy who calls himself Gansey. No less shocked her aunt tells her “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.
’m a huge fan of Stiefvater. I loved The Scorpio Races naming it one of my top four books of last year, and enjoyed the Shiver series. I had really high expectations for The Raven Boys and I am happy to report I thrilled with her latest book. While many of her other books alternate chapter by chapter from one person to the next, The Raven Boys is told from the perspective of all five people at once. Unlike my blundering, her writing is so subtle, and the emotions and thoughts of each person so unique unto themselves, that it works brilliantly. The Raven Boys is a cunningly crafted story of magic, friendship, and asks the question: If you knew you had one year left to live, what would you do?
I loved this book. *slight spoiler alert* The main character is a female contender in the Hunger Games, she learns not only how to fight for food andI loved this book. *slight spoiler alert* The main character is a female contender in the Hunger Games, she learns not only how to fight for food and resources but how to find the mind games of the people officiating the games. She is totally a strong female character who doesn't wait for someone to save her, but figures out how to save herself and possibly others. A dark fantasy set in a dystopian world, the Hunger Games is one of my favorite reads so far this year. I can't wait to finish the series. ...more