The story is great visually to imagine with interesting set-pieces. I have full confidence that Spielberg can make this into an AMAZING film. UnfortunThe story is great visually to imagine with interesting set-pieces. I have full confidence that Spielberg can make this into an AMAZING film. Unfortunately it's just not that well written. I have a feeling I will enjoy the movie much more than the book.
The multi-narrator format for this book really fell flat for me, especially when the author attempts to have a robot - yes a robot - narrate the story. Internally. In its head. So is a robot really going to spend the time describing how fast his feet were moving "like the needle of a sewing machine"? No, a robot - even a self-aware one would not bother with this kinda stuff, so it just comes off as really cheesy and lame science fiction. There just seemed to be a lot of unbelievable science in this book, which is a problem.
Again, once the narrative format is removed and Spielberg gets his hands on the visual uniqueness of the book to tell a story, he will probably do a much better job than the author did....more
It's really hard to know get a grasp on what kinda book this is from the outside. I was completely wrong in judging the overall tone of the book, evenIt's really hard to know get a grasp on what kinda book this is from the outside. I was completely wrong in judging the overall tone of the book, even after I read some reviews. As mentioned in other reviews, the book captures a mothers love for her child amazingly, and provides a strange juxtaposition between being tender and innocent yet haunting at times. But do not be deceived by the synopsis and reviews. It's easy to assume this book is a teary eyed sad sack story about some abused kid, with the author over-using a child's plight as a cheap device to make you feel extreme emotions.
One thing that I am not seeing people mention about this book is that it really feels like a thriller or scary story to me - or at least the first half of the book. I have never felt so anxious about what will happen next in a story as I was when reading this book. It doesn't start out this way - instead it's a nice pleasant story that slowly builds in intensity until you are extremely invested in the outcome. It was like a pot of cool water on the stove that slowly started boiling until it violently begins overflowing. Interestingly the second half of the book changes the tone from being nerve racking and scary to a completely different, yet still gripping tone. Overall it's a great ride and a very thought provoking tender story that will give you a lot to appreciate about your life especially if you have kids.
This book is a must read for anyone who is interested in technology and where the internet is taking us as a society. In many ways it is Google that iThis book is a must read for anyone who is interested in technology and where the internet is taking us as a society. In many ways it is Google that is driving us there. Levy provides a surprisingly detailed perspective on the inside of Google which helps demystify the company a lot. It's great to see what is true about the company and what isn't. I was also surprised how balanced the book was. I assumed since Google allowed him to be an embedded reporter that the book would be skewed a bit and let Google off the hook for certain things. I was happy to discover my assumption was wrong. The author still comes off a bit as a Google fan, but he does not shy away from the big issues that face the company.
The most mind-blowing aspect of this book is coming to understand how insanely ambitious Google's co-founders are and how intensely they value data. They find like minded people to welcome to the fold and their unified fanaticism takes on a nearly religious tone. I have no doubt that these people at Google will continue to change our world in very dramatic ways (perhaps for good, perhaps for worse). Changes like self-aware computing, assisted human cognition, these advancements are surely coming, this book just convinced me that it will most likely be Google taking us there.
This book stands to be one of the most important I have ever read. It is a masterpiece in moderate thinking and is able to do what most other books abThis book stands to be one of the most important I have ever read. It is a masterpiece in moderate thinking and is able to do what most other books about food, diet, and health cannot do: sit squarely on the fence between the camps for and against vegetarianism. Because of this fence sitting the author is in an elevated position and can paint a more complete (albeit less polarized and dramatic) picture of the realities of the food world we live in and how to navigate it.
Unlike most books about diet and food health, this book will not uncover some deep conspiracy theory, isolate ONE particular evil in our diet, or promote a specific secret to dietary health. What it WILL do is give you a very believable and comprehensive birds eye view of where we are in the food chain, how the western industrialized diet has become so problematic, and how to avoid the pitfalls that plague our western sensibilities. This book will inspire you to ENJOY food, seek quality over quantity, and to be involved in the process of gathering cooking and eating food with your family. It will give you the fortitude to trust hundreds of years of food tradition over modern scientific food trends, and give you ACTUAL believable common-sense reasons why processed foods are not great choices - something I always felt confused about, but now deeply understand.
My only small gripe, which isn't enough to effect my rating really - The author tends to repeat himself a bit too much, and has a slight tendency to dramatize language (something I dislike with Malcom Gladwell as well), especially when talking about nutritional science. It was only when discussing this topic did he seem to be a bit too biased and polarized in his view for my liking. That being said, he does have some very justifiable reasons for vilifying industrialized food and nutritional scientists - this just felt like the only part of the book that was a bit too overly dramatized (and conveniently so, because it creates a villain and builds reader interest.)
This book was probably my favorite of the series. It covered more mature themes and the brutality in the book was a little more than I expected. I doThis book was probably my favorite of the series. It covered more mature themes and the brutality in the book was a little more than I expected. I do really like how the author created morally grey situations within the context of war and how there are no perfect solutions. The internal narration of Katniss did not irritate me as much as the previous books, I suspect because there is just not as much time to be inside her head as this story is pretty eventful.
I wont say much about the ending, except that I thought it was handled very well, and the way in which it plays out is the most unpredictable part of the series. This was refreshing, even if the rest of the book suffers from some cliche moments or predictability....more
Although the grand pieces of the story are still very predictable, this book does a better job at giving you unexpected turns of events. There is a poAlthough the grand pieces of the story are still very predictable, this book does a better job at giving you unexpected turns of events. There is a portion of the book that gets a little tired when it repeats a similar outcome of events from the first book, but other than that it was pretty enjoyable. Katniss' narration still tends to over-analyze every situation, but less so than the first book, which really bugged me. So that is at least a bit better. What irritates me still is how completely dense the character is at recognizing the grand scheme of whats going on. When every reader already has put the pieces together, and the main character who has the same information has not.. it's hard to empathize with that confused character. Instead of sticking to the witty, empowered, independent female character type, the writer ends up painting her as a bit dense - which is a shame.
Still looking forward to the last book.. as mentioned on the previous book, the broad strokes of story are still good, and enough to keep you reading.
I should also mention, I have been listening to the audiobook.. and the person reading is starting to bug me, and probably only adds to my frustration with Katniss and the way she thinks. So if you have a choice, you might want to stick to reading it yourself....more
I think if I had known this was a young adult novel from the outset I would have liked this book more. An inexperienced reader may not have been as asI think if I had known this was a young adult novel from the outset I would have liked this book more. An inexperienced reader may not have been as as irritated as I was with some of the narrative devices, or the overly convenient happenings that were presented in the story. For teenagers this book may be pretty compelling - but for people who have years of movies, books, and video games under their belt it's hard not to see the flaws. Sadly there are only a few unpredictable and TRULY organic feeling moments in the book. Early on I could see the story ending in a couple different ways within the first quarter of the book - and by in large that is how it played out.
The only other thing that bugged me about this book is how the female was written. I don't know if the author was making a critique on how women tend to think, and maybe the disadvantage to that mode of thinking sometimes, or just writing how she tends to think: over-analyzing every interaction, reading in-between the lines of every conversation, etc.. but it became a bit too much. At first I thought it was kind of a clever use of narration, but near the end I became extremely impatient with it and just wanted it to stop. At some point I even felt it became somewhat derogatory to suggest that women think this way. I could be way off base on this and I don't intend to come off as misogynistic, but for whatever reason it really irritated me. Apologies if this author somehow "effortlessly captured the mind of a woman" or something.
All that being said, I DID like it overall. The broad strokes of this story and setting are strong. Despite the flaws it's still entertaining with good ratios of love, adventure, and emotional turmoil. I will probably dive into the sequel, although if that narrative style continues as it does.. I might have to pull the plug....more
The strongest features of this story are the duality of the rest home story vs the depression era story and the dirty and gritty underbelly of the cirThe strongest features of this story are the duality of the rest home story vs the depression era story and the dirty and gritty underbelly of the circus, giving the reader a fascinating insider view the way a good documentary would. For those things alone, this book is a great read. The love story is decent, but I really don't think it was intended to be the main focus of the story, or at least it wasn't for me. The meat of this book covers two separate stories: a young man, and a very old man, navigating through some sticky situations, and the love story is simply part of that theme.
Too bad nursing home narratives and a gritty circus underbelly aren't marketable. Hollywood will remove everything that makes this book original (or as much as possible of these things) and leave just the love story, effectively turning it into a forgettable Notebook knockoff. From here on out it will be flowers, rainbows, and a perfectly romantic circus setting. Uuughh. The trailer made me cringe. Hope I am wrong....more