Original Link to the review at my blog Le' Grande Codex - here
Definitely not like any zombie book I have read before.... and that's what makes it uni
Original Link to the review at my blog Le' Grande Codex - here
Definitely not like any zombie book I have read before.... and that's what makes it unique (Note:- I read the ebook and listened to the audiobook alongside). Presenting World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks.
Here is the summary of the book:
Soon to be a major motion picture!
The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time.World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.
Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.
Most of all, the book captures with haunting immediacy the human dimension of this epochal event. Facing the often raw and vivid nature of these personal accounts requires a degree of courage on the part of the reader, but the effort is invaluable because, as Mr. Brooks says in his introduction, “By excluding the human factor, aren’t we risking the kind of personal detachment from history that may, heaven forbid, lead us one day to repeat it? And in the end, isn’t the human factor the only true difference between us and the enemy we now refer to as ‘the living dead’?”
Zombies.... the raging disfigured remnants of humanity. When it comes to a post-apocalyptic zombie book, you sometimes expect some form of biological hazard resulting in the zombie out break and the protagonist of the story going on a dangerous quest hell and back again to retrieve the coveted cure. Maybe something along the lines of Issac Marion's Warm Bodies (a surprisingly marvelous read and a good movie), Julie Kagawa's Blood of Eden series or Lia Habel's Gone with the Respiration series. But Max Brooks proceeded to deliver something akin to these preconceived notions.
A form of a journal.... that is what this book is. With the narrator collecting interviews across every nations on the globe. The main thing to keep in mind about the execution about this book is definitely not about the survivors or the zombies in general but it is what everyone around the globe went through in the great war. But zombies are there in the background as each interviewee explains their ordeals of the war. I'm going to go off tangent and somewhat compare the concept of the book to Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, where the titular character had no prominent role but the plot was devised around the man..... Just the same while zombies don't exactly feature on the foreground, they are very much present throughout the background of the whole book.
A book of such a global scale requires even more preparations and research than what a book normally requires. So many countries, so many cultures, different races & ethnicity, the accents even and their way of things..... he incorporated just about everything to the point. What the people did, how the countries came up with their own ways to tackle the situations and what the military conducted.... this is a coalition of all such facts and stories making it akin to a post-great war type journal.
Max Brooks did one thing more that sets it apart from the typical zombie genre..... he kept it grounded in reality. Zombie books have a way of being in the paranormal genre but World War Z kept it real, you get the feeling that it actually happened, the way the author presents the book. A side effect of which leads us to nor form connections with the plethora of characters, but its not them but their situations that situations that matter.
I would like to point out that I read it because of the upcoming film, which as I understand is going to follow the documentary styled book fully at all, since Bad Pitt seems to be the central character but I'll give it a go..... And people get this in audiobook, its an oral history. It serves better to ear it than to read it. I was moved to tears enough throughout...... have lost count of the number of times I bordered on highly emotional at the predicament of humanity.
"Max Brooks brings to us stories of a war like no other.... thought provoking and intense..... a call to humanity to right their ways before the unthinkable happens and it be too late to change"
Book 11 and the final book of the Legends Triology, To Be A King was likable not excellent for besides a few errors, the author didn't tie up all of tBook 11 and the final book of the Legends Triology, To Be A King was likable not excellent for besides a few errors, the author didn't tie up all of the loose ends as effectively as in her previous books.
The things I liked about this book in particular were the creative new characters, a new romance, and Hoole's transition from being a chick to an adult, from being a follower to a leader. Part of the book centers on the forces of evil (Pleek, Ygryk, Kreeth, and Lutta, Pleek and Ygryk's "daughter"), while the other part centers on the newly formed Guardians of Ga'Hoole.
This book basically lays the foundation for the Guardians of Ga'Hoole, the sea of Hoolmere and the Island of Hoole. The final battle for the N'rythghar is waged. While King Hoole reigns over the S'rthgahr, chaos runs rampant in the N'rythghar. Lord Arrin is ammassing an army for a final invasion, while kraals, Ullryck's hagsfiend troops, and a mad upstart owl's forces fight for the spoils. King Hoole must also form an army before Short Light, or lose all hope of ever reclaiming his father's throne. Hoole gains new allies: Strix Strumajen the Spotted Owl, Sir Bors the Barn Owl, Sir Tobyfor the Northern Hawk Owl, Lord Rathnik the Snowy Owl, and many others.
New, dark forces also lurk, preparing to strike and steal the Ember of Hoole: the archfiend Kreeth, and the changeling bird Lutta. Lutta transforms into Emerilla, Strix Strumajen's lost daughter, in order to gain Hoole's trust and steal the Ember. But Lutta finds something much more than just the Ember...
There are also deaths in To Be A King, but nothing too disappointing. Basically, the entire book explains how the Guardians of Ga'Hoole came to be.
But there were some problems in the book. Some parts were poorly edited, and had many errors. At the end, it was unclear whether or how Lord Arrin, Ullryck, and Shadyk were defeated and/or killed. Sure, Hoole and the Guardians triumphed, but the whole battle was mostly vague. Other than that, To Be A King is a great ending for the Legends trilogy and provides some insight on Book 12, The Golden Tree. ...more
**spoiler alert** Book 10 The Coming of Hoole, finally Kathryn Laskey is getting back on track. The arc of irrelevance and boredom started in The Hatc**spoiler alert** Book 10 The Coming of Hoole, finally Kathryn Laskey is getting back on track. The arc of irrelevance and boredom started in The Hatchling and continued all the way through The First Collier. But The Coming of Hoole is interesting and sticks to the original Guardians of Ga'Hoole story without slipping up nearly as much as the past three books.
Laskey made the right move in ending Grank's rambling first-person narrative and returns to the third-person, which the rest of the series is written in. The "writer" of this Legend book that Soren and Coryn (now accompanied by Otulissa and the rest of the band) read is supposedly unknown, but easy to figure out from pretty much the first ten pages. I liked her choice, and though you don't really get much more insight into this character than any of the others, it was still good narrative.
The widowed Queen Siv's egg has hatched, and Grank names the owlet Hoole. Immediately he and Theo begin to teach and train him, and Hoole is enthusiastic about it all. You can't help but love his owlet character- he's hyper and ambitious, totally unaware of who he really is and the power he has. When others decide to inhabit the island with Hoole, Grank, and Theo, however, the first collier begins making plans for their journey to Beyond the Beyond, where Hoole will learn from the dire wolves- most especially Fengo, Grank's old friend.
Meanwhile, Siv can't stand to have never seen her owlet. She makes an attempt to see him, which almost ends in his capture by hagsfiends, so contents herself with letting those she trusts in her old kingdom know she's there, readying suport for when she'll need it.
As typical now with Kathryn Laskey, there is no show of character development- Hoole grows up overnight without so much as a warning, and there is almost no mention of how the owl kingdom is faring without Hrath's leadership. So why do they care that the hagsfiends are there? From what it shows they haven't done anything bad! The battle scene at the end is sloppy, and, as predicted, the magic of the hagsfiends doesn't seem to stop any of Hoole's side, even though it supposedly made them unreachable in The First Collier.
But I still liked this book. It had good pace with a good story. Afterward, however, I'll be very glad to get back to Soren and the band (with the unfortunate addition of Coryn) with The Golden Tree, which will supposedly pick up where The Outcast left off. It's almost hard to read their tiny prolouge and epilouge scenes in the Legends trilogy. ...more
Book 9 The First Collier, like the book 7 & 8(The hatchling & The Outcast) changes perspectives again from the band (Soren, Gylfie, Digger andBook 9 The First Collier, like the book 7 & 8(The hatchling & The Outcast) changes perspectives again from the band (Soren, Gylfie, Digger and Twilight) to Coryn in the last two books towards the old legends of ga’hoole. This book is the first part of a mini series triology.
From his death bed, the old owl Ezylryb warns Soren and the great tree’s new king, Coryn, of a coming danger, and instructs them to read the Legends of Ga’Hoole so they will know the identity of this mysterious rising threat.
The first of these three ancient volumes is entitled “The First Collier.” In it, Soren and Coryn find a world of chaos, warring kingdoms, and nachtmagen, the dark magic of the evil half-crow, half-owl creatures known as hagsfiends.
When good King H’rath is murdered by the foul hagsfiends, his mate Queen Siv knows she must give up her egg if it is to survive. The hagsfiend Ygryk knows that within the egg is a very special owl, and she wants nothing more than to steal it and turn the chick within to evil. To rescue her chick, Siv gives the egg to noble Grank, the first collier, so he can raise it far from the hagsfiends’ harm.
Lasky was very elaborate with the characters names like: H’rath, N’yrtghar. Doing this was part of her creation of a new Scottish/ German owl language called “Krakish.” This shows the creativity of the author when they are able to “make up” a whole language (in fact she made two).
By the tale’s end, Soren and Coryn discover what Ezylryb intended them to learn: that the evil is not confined to the time of legends. An ancient malevolence has been loosed from the past that will threaten the very existence of the great tree. ...more
Book 12, The Golden Tree may as well be the best book of the whole series, although 15 books is stretching my interest.
After the mid-mini series of thBook 12, The Golden Tree may as well be the best book of the whole series, although 15 books is stretching my interest.
After the mid-mini series of the Legends Triology the Band finally makes a comeback, and Coryn is getting used to being King. Soren's chicks also hatch, though I was disappointed there wasn't much about them in The Golden Tree.
Coryn and the Band go on a journey to discover whether Nyra is really a hagsfiend, and if Coryn's blood is tainted due to his evil heritage, but end up finding out something totally different and possibly even more dangerous. A dark secret from the past is unearthed, and is in Nyra's clutches. Coryn and the Band need to stop Nyra before it's too late, and an important, beloved character nearly dies (i'm not revealing the name, it'll spoil all the fun), and another character does die. I was practically on the edge of my seat with excitement!
Meanwhile, in Coryn's absence, Otulissa is left to deal with the annoying Whiskered Screech Owl, Gemma, and Elyan the Great Gray Owl. Both have become obsessed with the Ember of Hoole, and many Guardians start to follow them. Eventually, even Otulissa is powerless to stop them, and the Guardians' only hope of alerting Coryn lies in one of the most unlikely of owls.
A character mentioned in Book 1, Bess the Boreal Owl, Grimble's favorite daughter, reappears as the Keeper of the Palace of Mists in The Golden Tree. However, Bess, like Soren's daughters, Pellimore, and Eglantine, also has no dialogue, except for flashbacks.
One of the book's greatest surprises was Madame Plonk's amazing personality transformation, from a spoiled, fat old singer to a warrior gadfeather. There are also hints at new romances, and a brand-new owl kingdom. ...more
After journeying through the Utopian vs. Dystopian saga of the Hunger Games, I have now entered the dimensions of the Wilbur Smith novels. As a welcomAfter journeying through the Utopian vs. Dystopian saga of the Hunger Games, I have now entered the dimensions of the Wilbur Smith novels. As a welcoming ceremony for entering a new literary dimension I leaved through the authors Standalone novel, i.e., novel that doesn't form a part of any of his other series...Elephant Song......and I was pleasantly surprised.
So far I have only read a few literary works, young adult, paranormal, fantasy, detection, sci-fi and few more so coming across Elephant Song felt as a coming-of-age novel, as the book focuses on the reality of life and had a much more of adult content than what I had previously read. It is also the first book that I am having a difficulty to write about so bear with me as I try to give words to my thoughts.
Here is how the summary goes:
The rangers closed in, firing steadily. Within minutes all the adult animals were down. Only calves still raced in bewildered circles, stumbling over the bodies of the dead and dying. Six minutes after the first shot, a silence fell over the killing ground on Long Vlei......
In the blinding light of Zimbabwe's Chiwewe National Park, Dr Daniel Armstrong, world-famous TV naturalist, films the slaughter of a herd of elephant. In London, anthropologist Kelly Kinnear is forced into violent confrontation with the shareholders of the most powerful conglomerate in the City of London, warning them of the destruction of an African country.
Now the time has come to act. Together, Armstrong and Kinnear forge a passionate alliance - and begin the fight against the forces of greed, evil and corruption attacking a land they both would give their lives to save........Combining breathtaking realism and thrilling suspense, the world's master storyteller takes us on a journey deep into the heart of a wild, magnificent continent, threatened forever by the destructive hand of man.
When I first bought the book from a book fair in the city, I had no inkling as to what I was about get myself into, Wikipedia pretty tells us the whole story so I had to forgo the urge to see the details about the book and prepared myself to be surprised because I had heard a lot about the particular talent of the Mr. Smith as a master story-teller. And I must say it was pretty much surprising, captivating, dark and all the harsh and cruel realities of life.
It is pretty much clear as to what the story is about from the title, elephants. Specifically the majestic beasts of the African continent. The author takes us on a journey through his pen into the heart of the Africa, its jungles and towards all the hardships faced by its people on a day to day life but it is also a novel that points us to the increasing imbalance in nature resulting from not only economic gains but also by greed. Elephant Song is still an exceedingly well written novel with a well thought out storyline. Many of the scenes invoke rage and disgust, while the scenes such as that which gives the book its name create emotions of deep loss and sadness. This book is not an environmentalist reader, though it does have strong themes of it, nor is it a conservationist reader, though it has strong themes of that as well.
Wilbur Smith through the medium of this book has defended the hunting of elephants and the controlled sale of game products - including ivory - as the only way to save Africa's wildlife. Writing in the an issue of African Safari Magazine, Smith plunges into the controversy over ivory sales which has pitted government, animal rights activists and conservationists against each other worldwide. The South African adventure-novelist says it was atrocious that Kenya burned several million rands (the South African currency) worth of tusks to support a total ban on trade in ivory in an attempt to end poaching. It was like taking money that could have been better utilized for conservation and setting fire to it, he writes.
The book also has strong undercurrent of corruption in the high offices. An African disease or the author's statement that if you have black governments managing their country exclusively for black tribes-people and wildlife becomes undesirable, then we're going to lose it. Smith's argument was that if you try to convince a subsistence farmer with a large family that the elephant or the lion is a beautiful animal and should be conserved, he will think you are out of your mind. The buffaloes graze on the grass that he needs for his cattle, a crocodile probably killed his grandmother and the leopard is killing his goats. You have to prove to him that the wildlife is of value and that it is worth his while to make some sacrifice. He says people will protect the animals if it can be shown that they will benefit from the money earned from hunting or sales of wildlife products.
As to the characters of the story - it is clear that Dr Daniel Armstrong is the protagonist, so he gets a much more page time (can't write screen time because we are reviewing a book). He is seen developing throughout the book as opposed to the others. We first see him doing his job of shooting footage for his new independent “Africa – Dying” series. After a life changing experience we see his life turn about. It is vengeance that drives him to do the things he does for the precious loss of life very close to him. While Kelly Kinnear comes in very late toward the end but it is seen that she also plays a pivotal role in the confrontation that takes place towards the conclusion of the plot.
It is a typical tale of economic gain balanced against the ecology and a bygone way of life. A novel says much of the times that we are in. Greed and personal gain at someone else's expense. Clearly well defined by the blurb on it back cover by the daily mail - "Sex, money, ambition, fear and blood.......and emotional stampede" ...more
A classic masterpiece. Another book that deserves your undivided attention. Presenting 1984 by George Orwell.
Here is the summary of the book:
WrittenA classic masterpiece. Another book that deserves your undivided attention. Presenting 1984 by George Orwell.
Here is the summary of the book:
Written in 1948, 1984 was George Orwell's chilling prophecy about the future. And while 1984 has come and gone, Orwell's narrative is timelier than ever. 1984 presents a startling and haunting vision of the world, so powerful that it is completely convincing from start to finish. No one can deny the power of this novel, its hold on the imaginations of multiple generations of readers, or the resiliency of its admonitions a legacy that seems only to grow with the passage of time.
This is the lord of all things dystopia. A relic of old if you will but definitely not a must read because not many have the patience to go through a classic novel and its long winding paragraphs. Now i'm not going to go in depth with this review because this is one book that you need to read yourself to understand the authors motifs and while all his predictions may not have come true for all....with a few exceptions to the rule but the Orwellian masterpiece is one you don't want to miss out on.
Thought crime, thought police or the concept of Big Brother, an entity that keeps a close eye on everything that is happening in the city. Well reading this you'll definitely understand where and how the concept of big brother and its adversary reality shows may have sprung up. Imagine a world where one single stray though can be detrimental to your safety. One single thought can be your undoing.
WAR IS PEACE.
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY.
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.
Orwell really gives a new meaning to them with his penmanship. That famous chapter nine definitely cuts up a new, gives a new meaning to the hollow within. In a world overloaded by laws Winston maintains his illicit romance, the torture, the manipulation.....a raw power in the making.
"An Orwellian saga you don't want to miss out on if you are a Dystopia fan"
Alright I simply don't know why I didn't discover this before....its so good. Presenting before you all my views of Marian's Christmas Wish by CarlaAlright I simply don't know why I didn't discover this before....its so good. Presenting before you all my views of Marian's Christmas Wish by Carla Kelly.
Here is the summary of the book:
Miss Marian Wynswich is a rather unconventional young lady. She plays chess, reads Greek, and is as educated as any young man. And she s certain falling in love is a ridiculous endeavor and vows never to do such a thing. But everything changes when she receives a Christmas visit from someone unexpected--- a young and handsome English lord.
Christmas is just two months away and what better away to spend the time than to read this phenomenal book about a many christmas wishes coming true for the Wynswich family don't you think? Well I simply can't fathom the fact as to how I could have missed this one before. Oh well......its here now and it is one the best historical romance fiction I have read so far.
Set in the time of Napoleon the story revolves around the Wynswich family and how they spend their christmas together. Although people might think of their family as wild and mismatched but each member has his/her own characteristics that define them. After the death of Lord Wynswich the family is down under dept and as used to be the norms of the old times girls then had to marry rich lords in order to pay off their debts, so is the scenario here as well the oldest son Percy who is a diplomat himself is trying to get a rich suitor for his sister Ariadne so they may pay off the debts. But Ariadne had already given her heart to another, the vicar Reverend Sam Beddoe (who is not only poor but shy in asking Ariadne's hand for holy matrimony) and does not wish to marry whoever her brother was bringing for the christmas. So her sister Marian (bless her) knows she must do something to avoid disaster from happening. Marian's only wish for this christmas is the happiness of her whole family.
As predicted her brother Percy does return back to Picton with not one but two rich gentlemen lords, a Sir William Clinghorn and Gilbert Collinwood, Earl of Ingraham. Sir William is the one who wishes to marry Ariadne but his rather lordly attitude is less than appreciable by the other Wynswiches (take Percy and Lady Wynswich out of the equation) and do all they can break off the affair for Ariadne's sake with a little help from the Lord Ingraham and while Marian does not wish to be tied in matrimony but this christmas is not only out of the ordinary for her but also for herself. Through a series of events Marian who had been planning her Christmas pudding wish all year, saving it for her much derailed family finds herself changing her wish: “I wish that Gilbert Collinwood will have the best Christmas.” Little does she know that Gilbert's own special pudding wish will depend on her to be fulfilled.
Marian's Christmas Wish is a re-issued traditional Regency romance from earlier in Ms. Kelly's career, originally published in 1989, and it has the feeling of a storyline which really moves, interesting, but accessible characters and pure entertainment. Out of the enormous catalogue of Carla Kelly's book this one is the first I have come across (and I'm so going to try the whole lot later). The story is rich in its plot, its rich characters, its prose and even the language that is styled as of the classic genre is easy enough to understand. Kinda made me remember of Jane Austen's Emma.
Marian is a very likeable character. She is spunky, she is intelligent, and there you go she has got a practical head in there. She is a sensible human being, even when crossed in love, and she’s got a sharp tongue and a cool head when such things are needed. And she’s more than a match for Gil, the equally intelligent and charming hero who has a rather big secret of his own, giving him a slight unexpected edge. There is one that should be noted here is the fact that Marian like the others of time when daughters married nobile gentlemen and acquired all the knowledge required to be the housemistress but she does act like a 16 year old and not showing the maturity portrayed by a say 28 year old would.
As to Gil's part of the story is seen. He remains a total enigma and although he is a diplomat and all the interactions between Gil and Marian make the highlight of the tale the nature of his work is the reason for the main confusion and heartbreak of the heroine halfway in the story. The author completes the personalities of the heroine and her hero with their words and actions.
The plot has an episodic feel to it and the best part as I had already stated are the interactions between Gil and Marian. They recognize an affinity between them immediately, quickly become comfortable allies, and progress to love. Marian, a good heart, though gets into much trouble with her loose tongue and sharp mind. Gil on the other hand is rather secretive himself yet very kind and has a particularly attachment to Marian, despite the 12 year age gap. And although this episodic saga has too many threads and wires weaving through it but at the end it all meets at a comfortable convergence, a perfectly sweet ending to an amazing read.
"Lovable and episodic...you'll find yourself wishing alongside Marian on her Christmas pudding"
Book 13, The River of Wind, finally the series i almost coming to an end.
The owl Bess has been studying The Others for sometime. They have had strangBook 13, The River of Wind, finally the series i almost coming to an end.
The owl Bess has been studying The Others for sometime. They have had strange markings, maps, and the special "winged ones" all clues that suggest that the owls aren't alone or weren't, at one point. But in the scraps of strange objects, lies a map of a strange sixth kingdom.
Bess calls Soren and the entire Chaw of chaws to investigate and see where this sixth kingdom lies. To find this place they must go on an air current The Others called "The River of Wind."
Traveling they find blue Dragon Owls, with almost Buddhist-like values, who live in the mountains. But Nyra, Soren's sister-in-law, is back with the cult of The Pure Ones who know of the sixth kingdom and spreads the demon's magic over the monastery.
What I love is how Lasky adds yet another fascinating culture based on real life, this makes the story just as interesting.
In the story we see how peace is easily disturbed by violence. The story takes a dark twist when even some of the blue owls practice black magic on the new eggs, making them possessed with hagsfiend magic and when they keep a large bird as the king, though he isn't very humble, being filled with jewels and materials things get worse. Nyra's strange demonic religion is spreading dangerously as her very feathers turn dark with all the evil that possesses her and Soren becomes worried that Coryn is concerned about his destiny, his mother, and the idea he might be what she is consumed in.
And the biggest secret of the blue owls in their evil past is revealed....more
It gets better and better each time. Presenting The Wardstone Chronicles #2 The Spook's Curse by Joseph Delaney.
Here is the summary of the book:
Now iIt gets better and better each time. Presenting The Wardstone Chronicles #2 The Spook's Curse by Joseph Delaney.
Here is the summary of the book:
Now it's the dark's turn to be afraid. The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, deal with the dark. Together they rid the county of witches, ghosts, and boggarts. But now there's some unfinished business to attend to in Priestown. Deep in the catacombs of the cathedral lurks a creature the Spook has never been able to defeat; a force so evil that the whole county is in danger of being corrupted by its powers. The Bane! As Thomas and the Spook prepare for the battle of their lives, it becomes clear that the Bane isn't their only enemy. The Quisitor has arrived, searching for those who meddle with the dark so he can imprison them—or worse. Can Thomas defeat the Bane on his own? Is his friend Alice guilty of witchcraft? And will the Spook be able to escape the Quisitor's clutches?
Picks up where the spook's apprentice left off. Tom with the Spook goes to Priestown to attend the funeral of one of his brother, a priest (the reason why they were going to Priestown in the first place) and finished an unfinished business of his....sense that...Spook's business. That "business" is a creature called the Bane. Long ago it roamed free and left destruction and despair in its path. It is secure enough, but is getting stronger and is able to control people's minds. The death toll is rising, so the Spook is ready to take care of it.
But that is not the only trouble they face, the Quisitor is here an he is all sorts of trouble, he is ruthless, he is devious, he is all kinds of bad. In the name of religion he goes about burning women even if they were witches or not all based on the fact they were said to be associating with the dark and the spook seems to be on his hit list and would do all he can to get him killed. That not all the Quisitor has already got himself another witch to burn and its....Alice.
Add to that something is different this time; keeping the Quisitor aside and taking the factor of the Bane in consideration. Well the Bane seems to be the influencing factor behind a major portion of the story. Constricted within the catacombs beneath Priestown, the creature can still access the minds of the people and day by day the darkness grows and the people keep getting controlled by it. The Bane knows that the spook is the only one who can put a stop to him. What follows is a series of events much more darker and dangerous than the previous one and testing the Spook, Tom and Alice to a T.
As far as the story and the danger level and the is considered there is the heightened level of risk here. The Spook's Curse is a very old and powerful curse that will one day claim his life (but if you believe in it). Again the story is pretty much an awesome piece of work. There is drama, there is risk and most of all there is the darkness that seems to be ever growing and more menacing than before. This book also peels away some more layers of the Spook's character bit by bit and kinda makes us see the "old-bones" in a new light but sadly Tom still remains the same, although he is now much more cautious, thinks things through and has realized that in a spook's line of work he has but only his master as his greatest friend but we don't really see anymore changes in him here.
So another great book and i'm off to read the next one now.
Moving onto the 3rd Installment of the Pendragon series The Never War, was pleasantly amazing for not only does it feature a planet....sorry territorMoving onto the 3rd Installment of the Pendragon series The Never War, was pleasantly amazing for not only does it feature a planet....sorry territory that we are very much familiar about but a territory that is also in reality is the only livable planet in the solar system (maybe the scientists would one day find more about outer space....).
Here is how the summary goes like:
Fifteen-year-old Bobby Pendragon is a loyal friend, sports star, devoted pet owner � and Traveler. Along with his uncle Press, Bobby has visited the alternate dimension of Denduron and participated in a civil war. He�s also waded through the endangered underwater territory of Cloral. Now Bobby once again finds himself thrust beyond the boundaries of time and space into a place that seems somewhat familiar: First Earth. Bobby and the Traveler from Cloral � Spader � have flumed to New York City, 1937. Against a backdrop of gangsters, swing music, and the distant sound of a brewing war, the two must uncover the evil Saint Dane�s newest plot. But is Bobby ready for the difficult choices ahead?
Before I delve into reviewing this book, i'd make one thing clear - FIRST EARTH is not any other territory as we have seen all this time but is entirely another time altogether....yes First Earth is none other than Earth in the past more preciously the time of World War II....Third Earth is the time in a distant future around the 5010s and is strangely the utopia that anybody could imagine.........while Second Earth from where Bobby Pendragon comes from is actually a time in the middle.
So, Bobby after winning against Saint Dane on Cloral in the previous book now heads to First Earth this time with Vo Spader to make sure nothing that the evil shape-shifting demon does that pushes First Earth the wrong way from its 'turning point'. So, First Earth the year 1937.........yes time to take out the world history books. The 1930s and the Hindenburg are familiar to me through several other books I've read as well as history I've researched.
For all the familiarity with the time period, though, MacHale tells a fascinating and fast-paced tale. Bobby and his new best friend Spader land in the 1930s while pursuing Saint Dane. They're immediately met by machine-gun toting thugs that try to kill them. Bobby figures out how to escape and gets Spader out as well. Spader is way out of his depth because he's never seen anything as "technologically advanced" as the 1930s.
One of the best things about the Pendragon books is that Bobby usually gets to save the day in a down-to-earth manner. He doesn't have any really special skills or powers that help him. At this point, he's fifteen years old and can do what most kids that age can. This makes the series more believable in some ways, and I think it draws the Pendragon audience in a little closer.
MacHale's sense of timing and pacing is excellent has improved much. The story moves quickly, and I got a real sense of urgency throughout the book as Bobby tries to figure out what Saint Dane is really doing. Many of the chapters end up on cliffhangers that will draw you rapidly into the next chapter. The dialogue is fantastic and sounds real in a way somebody's personal diary sounds like. One of the other facets of the series that I really enjoy is Bobby's friendship with Mark Dimond and Courtney Chetwynde. The closeness they share, even through Bobby's journals, feels real.
MacHale also mixes in adult heroes with his young champion. Vincent "Gunny" Van Dyke was an excellent grown Traveler in this novel. He was kind and gentle, and guided Bobby and Spader throughout the adventure.
I did miss the world-building in this novel, but I know MacHale gets back to it in later volumes of the series. But for kids who haven't researched the 1930s much, this should be a fun book. Also the question as to why is it that Bobby has to go fluming to other territories and save it before Saint Dane does the deed still persists.........................the one major major plot hole this series suffers from.
Readers won't mind the lack of character development as they're drawn into the nonstop action, snappy dialogue, pop-culture references, and lots of historical trivia. It's advisable to read the books in order because, although each one has a stand-alone plot, frequent references are made to previous events....more
After his adventures on Eelong in Book #6 The Rivers of Zadaa, Bobby Pendragon is now on Zadaa. Lets see how it goes...
Here is the summary:
Bobby PendAfter his adventures on Eelong in Book #6 The Rivers of Zadaa, Bobby Pendragon is now on Zadaa. Lets see how it goes...
Here is the summary:
Bobby Pendragon's pursuit of the evil Saint Dane leads him into the dangerous territory of Zadaa, which is locked in a civil war between two rival tribes. As Bobby and Traveler Loor attempt to pacify the region, he begins to realize that he has been transformed by his quest. An exciting fantasy series for readers 12 and up.
This story takes place mainly on a territory called Zadaa. There will be two main tribes here: The Rokador and the Batu. The Rokador live in tunnels underground and are fair-skinned, while the Batu are dark-skinned and live in a sunbathed city called Xhaxhu in the desert. For years, the Rokador have relied on the Batu to protect them from other savage tribes on Zadaa, and the Batu have relied on the Rokador to provide them with water. But the Rokador seem to be holding back the water, causing all the Batu to starve.
The struggle of good versus evil continues as Bobby Pendragon follows Saint Dane to the territory of Zadaa. Saint Dane's influence has fueled the fire of discontent between two warring tribes: the Rokador and the Batu. This is also the territory where the Traveler Loor lives as a member of the Batu. Together she and Bobby must work to thwart Saint Dane's efforts to destroy Zadaa.
But as Bobby pursues Saint Dane, he begins to notice changes in himself. He is no longer a flip kid looking for excitement. He is a young man beginning to see this quest as more than a series of adventures. He is also learning that as a Traveler, he had powers no normal human should have.
Zadaa was narrowly -- very much so --- narrowly saved, and like the other Territories is tremendously improved by the change. The city of Xhaxhu and its underground sibling Kidik merge into a single, very fertile and gigantic oasis, after the underground explodes in water.
In many ways, "Rivers" is a reworking of "The Merchant of Death". The parallel of two rival tribes being forced by a self-instigated catastrophe to co-operate is unmistakeable. In addition, the Traveler Alder, from Denduron, joins with Bobby, the acolyte Saangi, and Loor for this mission. Just as well, as I see it, is the way Bobby handles his feelings for Loor. Rather than beat about the bushes, he tries to kiss her as a signal. When she withdraws, her explanation is simple; they may love each other, but they cannot be together because an emotional bond would interfere with their interrealitial war for the future of Life.
Yet by the end of the book, the whole nature of their war has changed. No longer is Saint Dane's plan merely to destroy the civilizations of Halla; now he is mounting a personal campaign to entrap and kill the Travelers themselves. To this end, he attacks Bobby on Zadaa, then puts Courtney Chetwynde in danger while at the same time making himself a science partner with Bobby's acolyte, Mark Dimond. Later in the game, Saint Dane's wrath is out of control, to the extent that he slays Loor outright. But he evidently has not counted on the Traveler dependence of Need; Because Halla needs Loor, Bobby is able to heal her. Although no idea how that healing stuff works.
The dialog is now reaching a level of Good. You can sense Bobby's feelings towards Loor in this one, if you read the others you may have already. Bobby has grown up and is begining to show it. Still a teenager? Yes But now sounds older and more responsible? Yes. He thinks about his old life and knowing now he will never go back to that.
But i'll say it again it is a great time killer but not exactly appealing to me. Although book 2, 3 and 4 were my favourite so far....more
I could feel everyone looking at me, but I was used to it.
It was on the internet about a new movie named Beastly, starring Vanessa Hudgens and Alex PeI could feel everyone looking at me, but I was used to it.
It was on the internet about a new movie named Beastly, starring Vanessa Hudgens and Alex Pettyfer(who on a side note i would like to say would be a great Jace for the Mortal Instruments series movies). The descriptions everywhere said that the movie is a modern re-telling of the age old fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, a YA book. At the time when I watched the trailer I had no notion that it was actually a book that was being made into a motion picture. It was actually on a goodreads.com book of month poll in one the reader groups that I came across the book. So I went an got the book and it was actually very good. A really enjoyable book.
As the Summary of the book goes,
Kyle Kingsbury is a gorgeous high school freshman, spoiled rotten by his famous anchorman father, a man who'd rather dole out cash than affection. Kyle attends the exclusive Tuttle School in New York City and torments those poor unfortunates who lack his looks and wealth. When he humiliates a girl at school, she transforms him into a horrific-looking creature. Kyle's only hope for breaking the spell lies in finding true love-as he reports online in meetings of the Unexpected Changes chat group (other members include Froggie and the mermaid Silent Maid).
Beastly as I had already stated above is a modern day retelling of the fairytale “Beauty and the Beast.” Kyle Kingsbury is a sixteen-year-old at a private high school. He’s everything that every girl wants, and every guy wants to be: rich, gorgeous, charismatic. When he plays a nasty prank on an ugly girl at school, he gets the shock of a lifetime when he discovers that she is a witch. She puts a curse on him, making him as beastly on the outside as he is on the inside. He has two years to break the curse, two years in which he must find a girl who will look beyond his horrible exterior and love him.
Alex Flinn has taken the typical tale we all know so well, and dolled it with wonderful characters and the story of a shallow young man finding out that there is more to life than beauty and money, that there is value in kindness and intelligence and self-sacrifice. Kyle’s transformation goes so much deeper than his change on the outside. He is helped along the path by his blind tutor, Will, and his housekeeper, Magda. They show him how to love unconditionally, how to become a person that a girl may find worthy of love.
The contemporary style of the novel was definitely up to the mark and the modern dialogue delivery was perfectly done. and that it was from the Beast's point of view. Kyle really does change from a beastly rich boy (Kendra, the witch who curses him, calls him this the first time he's mean to her) into a smart young man who can love someone other than his own reflection. I liked the fact that Lindy, his "Belle," isn't actually a Beauty - she's just a normal girl. The online chat group (run by a "Mr. Anderson") was a neat touch. I think the thought that you could find a chat group for even magical changes in this day and age is rather an enchanting thought.
Flinn captures the cocky male adolescent voice really well. The meanness is there. The sex obsession is there, but we're not forced to read about it, making it appropriate for young readers. (When Kyle has sex with the rich chick, it goes on behind closed doors, so we just read that it happened, not the play-by-play.)
And she does a terrific job working the fairy tale into modern life. How she handles the rich father, the witch, the girl whose dad easily trades her for his freedom, the roses, the mirror, the servant, and the benefits for the others in the "castle," etc. are all skillfully worked in. I can't see that she misses anything at all. Flinn even includes fun little interludes of internet group counseling with other "transformed" creatures: the little mermaid, Snow White and Rose Red, the Frog Prince.
Above all the retelling business is that it is all believable - loved the believable way she showed us Kyle changing, transforming. And of course there's the wonderful blooming of true love. All this adds up to a truly delightful book that I hope will become wildly popular with teens. The book does a solid job of giving us a fresh perspective to the original in keeping with the drama and the element of intrigue high.
At the heart of it, the tale of the beauty and the beast goes back hundreds of years. But people understood the effects of testosterone long before anyone had a clue what hormones were or what they did. Hormones haven't changed, so human nature hasn't. That's why the story still works today. Even the girl Flinn puts in the story to save the Beast, although he overlooks her at first because she wears unstylish clothing, turns out to have a hot figure as soon as he sees her dressed up.
The Magic is real and it is there, but tis a modern setting. And even though the story was predictable, how could it not be? I was turning the pages faster and faster as I came to the end. This is a wonderful re-imagining of a tale that has much to teach us about what true beauty is.
And any adults, who will admit to enjoying Twilight, let me urge you to give Beastly a try, as well as those who love to read YA and fairytales. ...more