A slower-paced story compared to the first three books, but a true ASOIAF book nevertheless. The world and characters are as rich and fascinating as e...moreA slower-paced story compared to the first three books, but a true ASOIAF book nevertheless. The world and characters are as rich and fascinating as ever. The only flaw is that it seriously lacks drama and action. It was not realistic to expect another A Storm of Swords, but this book proved to be the weakest in the series. The events take the story forward, though, which is all a diehard fan really wants.(less)
This is the fourth time I've read this play and it's still as good as I remember. I'm not a Shakespeare fan, but Hamlet really is a masterwork of lite...moreThis is the fourth time I've read this play and it's still as good as I remember. I'm not a Shakespeare fan, but Hamlet really is a masterwork of literature. (less)
Reading "Hyrule Historia" was akin to a religious experience. This book is now one of my most prized possessions, and I would not give it up for anyth...moreReading "Hyrule Historia" was akin to a religious experience. This book is now one of my most prized possessions, and I would not give it up for anything! Thank you, Nintendo. :)(less)
Ready Player One gave me everything I wanted from a book: -A fascinating fictional world with dystopian elements (my favorite kind of world, ahem) -A gr...moreReady Player One gave me everything I wanted from a book: -A fascinating fictional world with dystopian elements (my favorite kind of world, ahem) -A great cast of characters. Seriously, I love Parzival, Aech, and Art3mis to death. I cannot wait to see them on screen -A great plot full of page-turning action and twists. This is an EPIC quest -A geek's perspective!
I'm not a hardcore geek or anything, but I do love video games and fantasy/sci-fi. Ernest Cline mostly references games, books, and movies from his favorite decade (the 80s), but even though I was not alive to experience its glory, I can still identify and understand his enthusiasm because I feel the same about the 2000s. I also loved how well-crafted and researched this book was. Every book, game, and movie was explained in detail, so what I loved the most was that if I didn't recognize a game (JOUST or Zork, for example), I could simply google for images, cover, or video of the game and immediately begin to visualize what Cline was describing. Reading this book was a blast. I was completely immersed by the world and the OASIS within reading 2 chapters of the book. Ready Player One deserves to be made into a film, but it's going to take a lot of money to do the many EPIC scenes in the book justice. I cannot recommend this book enough. (less)
What I liked about this book was that it successfully increased the scope of the world Jonathan Stroud created in The Amulet of Samarkand. I learned m...moreWhat I liked about this book was that it successfully increased the scope of the world Jonathan Stroud created in The Amulet of Samarkand. I learned more about magic, spirits, magicians, empires, and the history of all these things, which are all very important for crafting a believable and immersive world readers can get lost in. A compelling world is essential to the success of a fantasy series, as it's mostly what keeps the readers intrigued.
Second to a compelling world is the need for likable (or loathsome) characters. The cast in the series isn't particularly big, but this book certainly expanded it. The addition of Kitty's chapters and perspective, I think, is a welcomed addition. Admittedly, I was initially annoyed at all the background information we had to learn about her in the first half of the book, but that was mostly because I wanted to read more about Nathaniel and Bartimaeus' story. Eventually I warmed up to Kitty and grew to really like her strength, intelligence, bravery, and feistiness. I can't wait to see what she does in the last book and read more of her interactions with Bartimaeus!
The book has plenty of suspense, mystery, action, and magic to satisfy any reader--which is all great. But what really impressed me was Stroud's unique take on the magician story. I haven't read many books that focus solely on magic and magicians, save for Harry Potter, but many of them probably make them out to be the good guys (or good magicians against bad magicians). However, in the Bartimaeus trilogy, all magicians seem to be pretty terrible people, with the exception of a few. Even Nathaniel isn't turning out much better than all the other power-hungry magicians in government (at least so far). Given that the series is called "the Bartimaeus Trilogy," this makes some sense. I'm looking forward to some pretty epic things happening in the last book and seeing Bartimaeus come out on top.(less)
I got this book as an Amazon freebie when I was in the mood for something spooky and supernatural. I don't know what I expected from a book that claim...moreI got this book as an Amazon freebie when I was in the mood for something spooky and supernatural. I don't know what I expected from a book that claimed to be a true story of "ghostly adventures," but I at least wanted to be scared. I'm sure that if I heard footsteps and saw door knobs turning, I would flip out, but reading about it wasn't as exciting as I thought. The book was generally, enjoyable, however. It was an easy ready, short, and kept your attention. I'm still skeptical about the authenticity of the events depicted here, but I REALLY want to believe it.(less)
After finishing this book I finally admitted to myself that I am just not a huge fan of the "classics." As an English major, it makes me rather uneasy...moreAfter finishing this book I finally admitted to myself that I am just not a huge fan of the "classics." As an English major, it makes me rather uneasy to say this, but I just have to admit it. By "classics" I mean books written before the 20th century that were deemed high and worthy literature by some unknown literary circle. I have enjoyed several books written in the 18th and 19th century immensely, but they are so rare that I should just not even bother reading them anymore. Dickens, Hawthorne, Melville? Bah, take them away! I see Wilde, however, as being more modern perhaps because he wrote during the late 19th century and died in the 20th century. But he still holds some of the unappealing qualities I find in writer of "classic" literature. Those qualities being namely the adherence to an overly scholarly and dull narrative voice that wants to reveal every single boring detail!
These great writers were deemed so for a reason, but I just feel language is varied enough to always allow a writer to express himself in a better way--you know, a way that won't put the reader to sleep. To get back on topic, Wilde was guilty of this during some parts of the book, but his dialogue and plot progression was generally interesting to read. EXCEPT chapter 11. Oh, Gods why did he write chapter 11? It was one of the most dreadful and boring parts of a book I have ever read. Basically, Dorian spends the next 18 years of his life after the portrait is painted studying jewels, perfumes, tapestries and embroidory, music and many other hobbies that are narrated in the most boring way possible. The events leading up to that were mostly fun to read when I wasn't bored or annoyed by Henry's cosntant witticisms.
In the latter part of the book, Dorian and his friends spend their time doing more or less uninteresting things, but a few exciting moments occurred. And the ending was pretty great. I rather enjoyed the magical elements Wilde used in the novel. I liked that he asked us to simply accept that YES, Dorian's corrupted soul literally was transferred into the painting and he literally did not age for 18 years. I finished the book about 10 minutes ago and was overall satisfied. As the 3 star rating indicates, I "liked it." The plot was quite intersting and suspenful and the main characters were very memorable. No matter my opinion of Lord Henry, that cynical and arrogant prick, he sure made an impression on me. And so did Dorian--what a handsome, yet evil and incorrigible bastard he was!(less)