Ah, ha! Just when I thought that Rule as a book was the most predictable book ever and the super long chapters were getting on my neActual rating- 3.5
Ah, ha! Just when I thought that Rule as a book was the most predictable book ever and the super long chapters were getting on my nerves, and all the angst, anger and drama were getting a bit irritating, I was greeted by a super sweet ending.
Rule is the story of Shaw who has been in love with her best friend Remy's twin brother Rule since she first laid eyes on him. She has her own family problems and the Archer family accept her as one of thier own. Rule, however, wants to be independent, live his own life and have nothing to do with what others think about him. When Shaw and Rule spend Shaw's birthday night at Rule's place, everything between the two changes and they then begin to slowly fall in love.
In so many ways, Rule reminded me of so many book bad boys I've previously read and loved. He was a little attitudinal to me, but overall I enjoyed seeing him change and grow as and how times called for it. Shaw was a good enough girl but some of her actions peeved me. Nonetheless, as a couple, Shaw and Rule were super hot and super sweet. I even liked getting to know both their families, as weird as they were, and also their friends. Which is why I'm quite excited to read Jet, the next book in author Jay Crownover's Marked Men series.
New Adult books these days are just getting so easy to figure out. I can almost tell you the whole story after just reading one chapter from each of the protagonist's point of view. It went the same way with Rule and I tend to quite revel in the fact that I'm now so well versed with NA story lines.
Rule was a sweet and hot read that I and trouble getting into but I enjoyed by the time I finished it. ...more
Initially, I did not want to read author Leonard Kim's The Etiquette of Social Media. It's just that it didn't sound like something I would require. But I was very interested in knowing what the book is all about when I was making the author interview and giveaway post we did for the same. While it wasn't the best book I've read, I really do not regret reading The Etiquette of Social Media as I learnt a lot from the book; most of which I'll definitely be keeping in mind while establishing social media relations henceforth.
In a very simplistic, systematic and meticulous way, in his book, author Leonard Kim explains how, by being a little more aware of our surroundings by knowing how what we say to someone online affects them and stays on the internet forever, it just takes some common sense and a few easy steps to be accepted and appreciated online. While most of the stuff is pure common sense, we all know that common sense is not very common, so this book is really very helpful and useful. I did feel that there was a lot importance given to the "image" that one creates of oneself and how one is "expected" to be. Although those lean towards negatives for me, I did get the author's point when he stressed on how this affects our future and our present in many ways.
The Etiquette of Social Media is a very informative read that will make the reader think twice before typing and hitting send. For a very short read, the book is seriously packed with information. Some points are even illustrated with examples. I don't know if publishing the comments is the way to get back to someone who said something mean, but these people do exist all over the internet, and those of us who use the internet to actually gain knowledge and make a mark there need to keep our distance and stay safe. With a nice exercise, the author manages to make readers question their purpose in life as well. That made the book very reader/ user- friendly to me.
Overall, The Etiquette of Social Media was a good read that social media beginners will find very apt before starting their online journey. ...more
I used to read Middle Grade books when I myself was a middle grader. Then I don't know how, but I stopped reading MG books. The sole explanation I hadI used to read Middle Grade books when I myself was a middle grader. Then I don't know how, but I stopped reading MG books. The sole explanation I had for the same is that I outgrew those books. Then I won a couple of books that fall under the genre in giveaways. My first thought when I received those books was that I would give them away. One Sunday afternoon, I was browsing my book shelf for a quick and small read. I couldn't find anything. That's when I came across The Lemonade War and I thought, why not? I mean, I never stopped reading Middle Grade books because I thought they were too childish. But it's just that I worried a little about how it might seem. Anyway, I picked up the book and from afternoon until early evening, I was way too occupied in this super cute and innocent read that I thoroughly enjoyed.
The Lemonade War is the story of siblings Evan and Jessie who have a wonderful brother-sister relationship that gets a little rocky when Jessie, who is fourteen months younger than Evan, gets informed about something really exciting and interesting from school. Pissed off at this, Evan ignores his sister, who is also his best friend, and starts hanging out with his bunch of classmates during the last few days of their summer holidays. The two (Evan and Jessie) declare a lemonade war and the one who earns the most money by selling lemonade at the end of a week, gets to keep the money earned by both parties.
Having read mostly Young Adult and New Adult books in the past few years, I was pleasantly surprised and really happy to read such a sweet book with a nice story. Even though I fall under the category of New Adult and that means I'm supposed to relate to the characters in those books, I never succeed at doing that. When it came to The Lemonade War, I found way too many scenes that made me think of my childhood and how my relationship was, at that time, with my friends and siblings. It did make me realise how not smart I was at that age, but oh well, I cannot get over how happy and insanely cute this book was. It made me smile throughout. Of course, there were times when I felt bad for either of the sibling and I tended to side with the other. In the end, it was all good though.
The Lemonade War is a story of two siblings, lemonade, friendship and maths (which I finally learned, thanks to the book). I loved how author Jacqueline Davies has portrayed the cute, innocent and absolutely wonderful relationship between Evan and Jessie. There were times when charts, notes and tables are used in the book itself in the form of graphics which made it more fun. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and I've found a relaxing and truly entertaining genre to get to when I just want to read for the sole reason that reading is fun. I enjoyed The Lemonade War way more than I'm willing to admit. I don't care what it seems like now. I'm not ashamed of what I read and I'm so happy I read this book as it was a fantastic read. ...more
I was looking forward to reading Khushwant Singh's On Women. As I've been working on feminism and women representation for my research, I thought the book would help me in some way or the other. Turns out, I was completely wrong. It's not that I didn't learn anything. It's just that I didn't come across anything that would help me as such. Don't get me wrong. That in no way means I didn't like the book. I started off not liking it as I thought it was sexually exploitative, but as I moved ahead, I realised there was more to the retellings than just female bodies and sex.
On Women tells the readers short tales of women in Khushwant Singh's life- either in fiction or in reality. Some of the women are characters taken from his works, while others are women he has come across, met and been with in his life. The latter goes from his grandmother, his mother to his wife, his classmates from various academic institutions, the foreign tourists that he received to a beggar on the street to famous personalities like Phoolan Devi, Indira Gandhi and Mother Teresa.
As far as the book is concerned, I thought the stories were very well picked and put together. There was something interesting in Khushwant Singh's way of depicting women. Even when there were times when things got physical and it seemed like the whole purpose of the story, there would be something that brought up intelligence and integrity in a woman which made the stories really satisfactory and strong. I especially liked how women were portrayed as well-developed personalities and they stood their own alongside the presence of one of India's most renowned and powerful writer.
I have previously read Khushwant Singh's Train to Pakistan and for the life of me, I never understood that novel but it still left a mark on me. I was pretty glad when I read and understood On Women. Overall, while I did start off not liking On Women, I ended up liking it more than I have possibly been able to say. It was a really nice and short read that could have been more interesting, but even in the absence of that, it was a great read. ...more
Author Douglas Misquita's Impressions of Egypt is a tiny collection of memories the author has shared with his readers in the form of a small book from his short travel to Egypt. Like the author, and probably like most others, I have also been fascinated by Egypt for a long time now. Studying about the country in Geography class in school, playing games based on some Egyptian aspect or the other and then coming across Egyptian references in books all added in making me really curious about Egypt. That's the main reason why I was looking forward to the book, and the best part about it, for me, was that it's an extremely quick read that I devoured in an hour.
Because Impressions of Egypt is Douglas' own experiences put into words, I must say that the author has described everything really nicely. The writing was easy to read and simple to follow. It was difficult to imagine everything that was described- and I'm sure Douglas will agree with me here- as I know it must really be difficult to capture the beauty of Egypt. I quite like this one particular line used by the author in the very beginning of the book:
"I suddenly realise the English vocabulary is extremely limited: It cannot convey my experience [...]"
At the same time, however, I cannot deny the fact that for me, as a reader, it was the closest I could come in touch with Egypt and it was great to try see it with the help of this book.
Impressions of Egypt is a great collection of Douglas' travel experiences and he has done a very nice job of sharing the same with his readers. I liked reading the book and for a such a short read, it was almost like a travelogue and was packed with lots of facts and information that I will definitely retain. ...more
When I first bought Looking for Alaska, I had already read and loved The Fault In Our Stars. When I picked it up to read, I wasn't sure what to expect, but seeing as it's a John Green book, I knew that it would be, in it's own and unique way, epic. Unfortunately, it wasn't all that life-changing, mind-blowing and totally oh my God, but Looking for Alaska was still a great read, but I only wish I had loved it more.
Looking for Alaska is actually a very simple story of a bunch of friends who realise how short and valuable life is after they are struck by an incident none of them foresaw. I've read plenty of books with a similar plot and I've definitely read better. But what I must say is that Looking for Alaska is indeed a very nice story. I loved the aspect of what remains when we are gone that was taken up in it. Finding the "Great Perhaps" and all that. That was very interesting. But what has stayed with me and will stay with me most is the following line which I loved so much:
"You just use the future to escape the present."
The bunch of friends I spoke of before are Miles or Pudge, Chip or Colonel, Takumi, Lara and Alaska. I loved the gang, yes, but I especially loved Colonel. He was a cool and funny guy. And I loved his mom as well. While the book is actually from Miles' point of view, aside from his curiosity, I didn't really connect with him. Takumi had two absolutely great moments that I'll always remember when I look back at the book. Lara was really nice in her own way, but I didn't really like Alaska all that much and it's a shame, because the book is about her. She was messed up, but I would have loved to know the "whys" of everything, but I felt that somewhere, it was necessary to keep it unsaid and undone anyway.
What made Looking for Alaska a very quick and interesting read was John Green's writing. It was nice and simple and there were plenty of funny moments, although after reading The Fault In Our Stars, I didn't find it as brilliant. Besides, if I take into consideration the fact that this book is the author's debut, it was some really great writing.
I liked how the book was divided into Before and After and we go backwards and forwards from the day on which the incident that I won't tell you about happens. The summary is a little deceiving though when it talks about the After. I didn't find anything that wasn't the same except the excessive drinking and smoking which I didn't care about anyway. Speaking of the incident, I have my own theory, but to avoid spoilers, I won't mention it, although I feel everyone knows it for what it actually was than what it was made out to be. Looking for Alaska had some aspects that made it just about great for me, and I did like it while I was reading it. ...more
I came across this review of author Sachin Kundalkar's Cobalt Blue when I was searching for some absurdity-themed Marathi novels, and I was completelI came across this review of author Sachin Kundalkar's Cobalt Blue when I was searching for some absurdity-themed Marathi novels, and I was completely intrigued by the sound of it. Cobalt Blue may not have anything to do with absurdity, but it sounded so good to me. For quite some time now, I had my eye on the book, and I was excited to pick up and read the English edition of the Marathi novel translated by Jerry Pinto. Even though it's my mother-tongue, I am not the most comfortable reading in Marathi, and this book has really made me want to step out of my langue comfort zone and read the original. Somewhere, when I came across Cobalt Blue, I knew that the book would be amazing, and I can proudly say that it was just that- simply and purely amazing. There are many aspects of this book that can be contemplated over deeply and discussed thoroughly, but that would be lengthy and time consuming, so I will just write about its amazingness, taking into consideration the points I feel are the most important.
What I loved the most about Cobalt Blue- and I'm being biased here- is that it's set in my very own, lovely and incredible city of Pune where there is a peaceful and easy coexistence of tradition and modernity. I loved exploring my own city through the book, and was astounded when a shop that belongs to a family friend was mentioned. The story takes place in a simple Maharashtrian family of two brothers Aseem and Tanay, a sister Anuja and their parents. Whilst here, I would like to stress on Jerry Pinto's retention (of which he speaks in the Translator's Note) of some Marathi terms that can be translated, but sound more authentic and convincing when used the way they are. I, for one, found it very normal and nice. The Joshi family open up a room in their house for a paying guest. That's when the person whose name we do not get to know until the very end (what admiration I have for Mr. Kuldarkar), but who plays the most significant role in the story, comes into the lives of Tanay and Anuja, who are fascinated by the carefree, dashing, independent and quirky personality of their paying guest.
The first half of Cobalt Blue is a second person naration where Tanay directly addresses the paying guest, while the second half of the book is from Anuja's point of view where she narrates her journey with the paying guest. That brings me to another thing that I loved about the book, and that is the simultaneity of a heterosexual and a homosexual relationship. Although the two relationships are the focus of the book, sometimes, it seemed to me like the story was more about the Joshi family, wherein everyone knows one another, but no one really understands each other. It's so good that I can't even describe how well everything is done. That aside though, Cobalt Blue is not about discovering, accepting or exploring sexuality, it's about embracing it. In a very conscious and subtle way, the author keeps the family on one side entirely and the two love struck siblings on another side. The consequences of both the relationships are devastating and let me get one thing straight- I had been waiting to read a book like this for so long. A book where things left unsaid, remain unsaid. A book where things left undone, remain undone. It was astounding and so very amazing.
There is something so intriguing and mysterious about Cobalt Blue that I wanted to read it so bad and once I began reading it, I didn't want it to end. But honestly, like I said before, I was waiting for a book like this and I'm more than glad I finally stumbled upon it. Seriously, Cobalt Blue has proved to me that Marathi literature is so precious and there are so many gems to be discovered. On a purely personal level, I don't like to shout out about the books that I loved and find special. But something about Cobalt Blue makes me want to take up the job of letting people know about its beauty and just thrusting the book (even if it's my very own and henceforth treasured copy) in their hands just so they know how beautiful it is. The story is amazing. The writing is amazing. The translation is amazing. The book is simply amazing. ...more
I wasn't even aware of a play named Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller until my professor recommended it to me after we had a discussion on tragedieI wasn't even aware of a play named Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller until my professor recommended it to me after we had a discussion on tragedies when doing Aristotle's Poetics. At that time, while I did agree that tragedy can strike anyone, I believed that a tragedy has an effect on a larger audience when it strikes someone of higher status in society. My reason was that catharsis has a greater chance of occurring when one person's tragedy doesn't just affect that one person, but an entire section of the population entirely. I now get when I was asked to read Death of a Salesman. The play did it's job in proving to me that when tragedy strikes common people like you and me, it has an even bigger impact because it makes everything so believable and real.
Death of a Salesman was the first play or work even of Arthur Miller that I read. And it was meticulous. I absolutely loved the way it was executed. The language was simple and the plot, extremely easy to follow and understand. While I thought I wouldn't be able to fathom the basis of the play since I find it every difficult to understand plays in general, Death of a Salesman was, like I said, really easy and simple. It was simply outstanding and I can now understand why it has been touted as one of the greatest plays of its time. I admit that the characters were slightly confusing and at times, it got difficult to keep track of them all. The ending seemed a little off and vague to me, but I got what happened and that is what matters, I suppose. Keeping that aside though, whatever took place was necessary to take place and it made the play very realistic.
WILLY (moving to the right): Funny, y'know? After all the highways, and the trains, and the appointments, and the years, you end up worth more dead than alive.
How much more real can it get, huh? This time around, I also took notice of many, many aspects that I would have let pass without a second glance otherwise. That's simply because my brain has been trained to observe in a critical way now. The dynamics of the play made me question society in general and king or commoner, we are all subject to tragedy in whatever form it decides to come to us, economic, political, social, whatever. There was comedy in it but I didn't really feel like laughing. It was a family drama so to say. But I looked at it more as tragedy and the play gave me what it was supposed to. I can't seem to appreciate it as much as others have in the past and I am slightly at a loss for words, but I still loved Death of a Salesman and I am glad I read it. ...more
Okay, first and foremost, let me make one thing absolutely clear. The first book in Jamie McGuiree's Maddox Brothers series and one of the most anticipated releases of 2014, is not the story of one single couple, Cami and Trenton. It is the story of three couples and I mean that in a negative way. With the #Trentislikewoah hashtag going around like wildfire, I was expecting Trent, Trent, Trent and more Trent. Unfortunately, this is not just about Trent, but T.J, Brazil, Kody and Travis.
I wouldn't say I absolutely disliked Beautiful Oblivion because I didn't. If anything, I was just disappointed. For me, it seemed like Abby and Travis- and I admit that they're one of the greatest couples out there and I heart them both large- seemed like sugar. You put it in anything and it'll sell. And in this case, it doesn't have to be a dessert, savoury will do too. I see nothing wrong in it. In fact, I was delighted to meet my most favourite book boyfriend. But honestly? We read Beautiful Disaster. We read Walking Disaster. And now we read. The. Exact. Same. Stuff. In Beautiful Oblivion. Besides, Beautiful Oblivion is essentially Cami and Trenton's book. This brings me to another part. I was so disappointed to see- and I keep the hashtag in mind here- that Trent didn't get a point of view. Maybe we'll read. The. Exact. Same. Story. From Trent's point of view in Walking Oblivion (totally made up) perhaps?
Now onto the better stuff. I must admit that I had fun reading his book. It was a nice change for me from a lot of intellectually heavy stuff I've been reading these days. So in that way, it was a nice read. But as I contemplate over it, I realise that there are many aspects to Beautiful Oblivion that seriously make me question it. I didn't appreciate how Cami was hiding such a major aspect of her life from Trenton. I got the why of it, but how? You say you love someone and then you don't tell them the truth. How is that going to work? And the same goes for Trenton. I mean, come on. You are a Maddox. Aren't you boys supposed to be walking sex? Why did you have to wait so long to tell the girl you love, that you love her? And why, someone please tell me why do you need a child- any and whom so ever's child- to make stuff pleasant?
I feel so bad to have said the stuff I have said, but it is what it is. Like I said, I did have some fun here and there when reading Beautiful Oblivion, but once I shut the book and started gathering my thoughts, I realised it wasn't all that worth it, and there's plenty of stuff to be discussed in there. Overall, Beautiful Oblivion wasn't as promising as it promised to be. And New Adult and I have gone- for the nth time this year- on an off relationship again. ...more
I absolutely adored Katie Kacvinsky's First Comes Love and Second Chance. In fact, I remember quite well that Second Chance was one of the first blogI absolutely adored Katie Kacvinsky's First Comes Love and Second Chance. In fact, I remember quite well that Second Chance was one of the first blog tours we participated in since we started our blog almost two years ago now. Having enjoyed the first two books, I was looking forward to reading the final instalment in the series. However, seeing as it was a gap of two years, my excitement wasn't up to the brim.
Finally, Forever was the most random book pick for me seeing as I was pushing the book aside. Besides, I was just on the verge of going into a reading slump. But thanks so much to this book, I read like it was a competition and the one to finish first will be rewarded with more books. But other books will come only after I enjoy Dylan and Gray's company for a while longer by writing this review. I had no idea I missed Dylan and Gray, the cute and most unusual couple so much till I read Finally, Forever. In this book, having established their knack for wrong timing, the two bump into each other and that leads to a confused, crazy and absolutely cool road trip of a journey.
I thoroughly enjoyed being with Dylan and Gray. There are a few scenes in the First Comes Love series that have stayed with me for all this time and it's simply amazing when an author manages to do that. I must applaud Katie Kacvinsky for her unconventional way of showing an adventurous, curious, unique, vagabond girl being mellowed down by a nice, simple and sweet guy in her books, as opposed to the other way round formula. The author writes so well from both her characters' points of views. It makes you think they're real. I especially treasured the deep and meaningful conversations which are a rare find in Young Adult/ New Adult novels these days.
Dylan and Gray are such a joy to read about and it was amazing to see the two work and at the same time, not work things out together. It was a treat to watch their respective families play such an important role not just in their lives, but in the general plot of the book. I have seriously devoured and enjoyed this book to the T. If you haven't read this series yet, you seriously need to start. Or better yet, like the author herself says, you can even read the last book as a standalone. Just go for it. You'll end up having a good time, I promise. All in all, I am so glad I finally read Finally, Forever. It has been one of the cutest and quickest reads of the year for me. ...more
*NOTE: We (The Readdicts) received a copy of Twelve Years A Slave by Solomon Northup from Pirates in exchangeActual rating- 2.5
This is a DNF review.
*NOTE: We (The Readdicts) received a copy of Twelve Years A Slave by Solomon Northup from Pirates in exchange for an honest review. We thank the publishing house for the book!
When we first received an email about Twelve Years a Slave, I was extremely intrigued by the book since at that time, I was reading Edward W. Said's Orientalism for my literature class and studying the theory as well. So this book seemed like the perfect way to apply the theory to a literary work that isn't fiction. For some reason or the other- and the reason being studies mostly- I kept putting the book aside although ideally, I would have loved to read it while doing orientalism. When I finally picked up the book to read, it was too late, I guess.
When I went to Quebec for an exchange programme, the in-flight services provided by our airlines had the movie Twelve Years A Slave and I decided to watch it after having watched actors from the film go receive their Oscars for the same. I didn't like the movie much but I did find it interesting. It was sad and devastating, and I wouldn't really know how much of the book was taken to the big screen. I had the book with me at that time as well, but I already said, I never got to it since I had other stuff to do.
ANYWAY. I guess I've gone off topic enough and it's time I finally get to the review instead of just blabbering about random stuff that no one even cares about.
So, the book. Well, first off, I did not like the pace of it. It was way too slow for my liking without much happening. I understand why there was a lack of dialogue and a heavy dose of description, but for me, it was too boring. I admit that the binary opposition of master/ slave has been the most interesting relationship since it's nothing but a human thinking another human as savage and using him for his own benefit. But all that aside, the problem I have is not with the story. I don't want to talk about it since I'm not really sure I am capable of doing it.
I was under the impression that I was reading Twelve Years A Slave when I received an email from Goodreads asking me to update my progress on the book and telling me that it's been 50 days since I started reading it. 50 days. Can you imagine that? 50 days is almost a month and a half. And I read only 90 pages of the book. And in that time, I didn't even read any other paperback since I knew I was reading Twelve Years A Slave and it's better to finish one book before getting on to the next. Honestly, it's not the book's fault. It is mine. I did not read it on time and when I was in the mood for it. So if anyone is to be blamed, it's me. I would have liked to just sit down one day and finish off the book, but somewhere, I know it's not going to happen and I don't want to waste time reading something that I won't exactly prefer to read otherwise. What should be noted is that whatever I read, I found alright. It was profound and I learnt a lot of stuff here and there. But it's taking too long and I've lost interest, honestly.
I know there are people who will love this book, and I would have as well, but no. It's too time consuming (as if my current pile of books doesn't haunt me enough) and I must close one door to open the next. Sorry, book. ...more
When your favourite bloggers read and appreciate a book, you have to read it, no matter what. We Were Liars has already gone down inActual rating- 3.5
When your favourite bloggers read and appreciate a book, you have to read it, no matter what. We Were Liars has already gone down in history as the fastest and most sincere recommendation I've taken from my buddy Tanja. I had been seeing the book around a lot and when I read Tanja's absolutely beautiful review for it, I began reading the book within an hour of reading her review, so you can imagine the impact her review had on me. Our buddy Glass read and loved the book as well so that was definitely a plus. I wasn't expecting much (as I've learned not to do) from the book, but it seemed like it would be a very good story. Unfortunately, my feelings are mixed and even more unfortunate is the fact that I do not like mixed feelings.
Let me start with the positives. This was the first E. Lockhart book that I read and the writing was amazing. It had such a pretty flow to it and it could be read as poetry. It's not always easy to read books written this way and I am well aware that most people do not prefer to read in this manner, but I get hooked on to it from page one. The writing was the second reason why I went fast with the book than my normal reading speed. The first reason, you ask? The mystery. The intrigue. The curiosity. Just like the writing, I was into the plot from the beginning. I was dying to know exactly what would come my way and my curiosity was piqued to the point that I wasn't even making up my own imaginary scenes as I just wanted to know, know and know more.
That brings me to the plot itself. While the story was quite strong and highly interesting, I didn't quite like the way in which it was executed. I loved the ending because I love these kind of endings, but somewhere, I felt that something was missing and that is purely my fault since I kept asking and waiting for something more. There were quite a few issues that were going on on the island on which this story takes place among the family there and they were really good and well developed, but issues like this are much more fascinating when there's more depth to them. I felt that they became very petty at some point. Also, the ending didn't have an impact on me. If anything, I was only trying to search for something that wasn't there. The characters were fascinating, I would say, with each person having flaws, making them more real, but I didn't connect to them save for a few truly exceptional times.
I really wish I had liked We Were Liars more like everyone seems to have, but then again, I am someone who goes left when everyone goes right. Anyway, I am so glad I gave the book a try since it is beautiful in its own way and the whole reading process was one amazingly cool experience keeping me at the edge of my seat throughout and when a book does that, it is a good book. The few aspects that I didn't quite enjoy or "get" end up being the main parts unluckily, but that aside, this was a good book....more