This is really a 3 and 1/2 stars rating. Books should come with a disclaimer. Of you hate cliffhanger endings forcing you into another book don't read...moreThis is really a 3 and 1/2 stars rating. Books should come with a disclaimer. Of you hate cliffhanger endings forcing you into another book don't read this until the next is available. Well the setup is somewhat clever and the perversion of Oz seems appropriate to me at 31 I'm not sure my 14 year old self who loved Oz would appreciate or like it. Mostly my biggest complaint is the lack of ending or the abruptness of the ending. There was a solid point to stop. But then a few more pages go on and rush through what would be a good opening to book 2. Unfortunate. Will I read the second book? Maybe. I'll see how the story sits with me in a few weeks/months. (less)
A very engaging reading with enough pop culture and book culture references to fill a dissertation on their relevance, symbolism and context. There is...moreA very engaging reading with enough pop culture and book culture references to fill a dissertation on their relevance, symbolism and context. There is a lot you can read into this book. But also a lot that can be taken with little philosophical viewpoints at all. The story itself drags a couple of times but for short bursts and gets back on track.
My number one reason this is a 4 star versus a 5 star is that I got very tired of reading about how amazing Google is. In fact given that so much else in the book is made up it would have served better (and felt like less of an advertisement for Google) had Sloan made up a tech company that was on par with Google.
Overall a very satisfying read. If you have a love of technology, books, print, fonts and codes (or even 2 of these are loves of yours) then I think you will greatly enjoy this book. (less)
While the ending to this book is very good. The first half is too slow, lacks our character development and has too little Peabody and other character...moreWhile the ending to this book is very good. The first half is too slow, lacks our character development and has too little Peabody and other characters I love in this series. Far from the best but was still a tolerable read. (less)
Edited to make more coherent as it was written at midnight originally.
This is a 3-star review ONLY because the writing is fantastic (and worthy of 5-...moreEdited to make more coherent as it was written at midnight originally.
This is a 3-star review ONLY because the writing is fantastic (and worthy of 5-stars) and did move me (who rarely cries) to tears; but two stars lost for being cliche, lame plot and typical characters. I want to clarify I did not tear up because of the plot or story. Merely because the writing is excellent and I couldn't help but be moved by the poetry of it all.
Now let me take you down my road of reading The Fault in Out Stars... (And then ask some questions I want EVERY READER of this book to ask themselves...)
Step 1: Insistent on not reading it because hate books that are only written to make you cry. Step 2: One of my best friends tells me it's quite good and lends it to me (she's a hospice nurse and I've known her a long time so I always try anything she thinks worthy of a read).
Reading Book 1) Start reading book. This is a very FAST and mostly satisfying book... At the beginning. The characters are witty and kinda cute; writing makes you want to stay up all night and keep reading. 2) The meet-up. Our two lovebirds first meeting was too Twilight-y for me. I detest the "insta-love" meetings. My husband and I didn't insta-fall in love; but we know we truly love each other. Does that then make it a lesser relationship to the insta-love kind (because I felt like Green was making me feel that way)? 3) Are we there yet? Book carries on for another 200-some pages... And all I can think is there had better be an amazing ending to this or else it's just another cancer book to make you cry. 4) The Reveal. At big "reveal", which I was dreading would be as cliche; and it was EXACTLY as expected *sigh*. I'm pretty much wanting to throw the book across the room (but it's borrowed so I gently put it on the table and bitch to husband about it) 5) Nearing completion. Get to last 30 pages and find myself struggling not to cry. This is NOT because the plot or entire book itself is amazing. It's because the writing is so damn poetic. 6) Even closer to completion. Get annoyed at crying (which I so rarely do when reading; note: I hated my sisters keeper and didn't shed a tear-- yes I may be a heartless bitch) 7) The end & realization. Think on it for a few minutes and say to myself that it's not the book itself I dislike. As it's well written and quite elegant at times. What I hate are the plot cliches and characters.
A few things to consider, in my mind, about why this isn't the best book ever: A) Had Green used a different less "visual" disease than cancer would people still feel drawn to this book? Example: If a rabid parasite devoured a child would it be less tragic? B) If the treatments for cancer weren't so horrific and illness inducing on their own would you still think of this book the same way? Example: if the disease just slowly but surely ate your lungs away and there was NOTHING at all to ever try or do (like cystic fibrosis) would you be as moved? Or just bored by pages and pages of pain and hospital visits? C) if the book was about any age group other than teens would you still go "awhhh" to the love story? I know I would think; cliche and very "convenient" plot to suit the emotional 'journey' of our characters. Romanticizing teenagers seems to be a thing lately. I had a good time as a teenager but the drama is not something I EVER want back again thanks. D) If you knew someone right now dying of any disease whatsoever would you still feel impassioned by this book? Or would you feel it's a cheap way to "inspire" people to live life to its fullest or appreciate the small things? Example: is the tragedy of this book teens (whom you tend to love for their odd wisdoms) with cancer who may or may not die? Or is the tragedy that cancer kills so many? Or is it that there is the idea of undying love? E) Did you just read this book and now hope every day after to meet your "Gus" and start your life?
A few things I'll say in conclusion and a few about me and people I've known to give perspective on why I'm a cynical bitch about this plot and characters: 1)I hope all teens who read this realize it's fiction and love is neither convenient, well timed, nor as romantic as novelists love to make it. (I love me a good historical romance but I read them for light reading; not to gain insight on my life). Relationships, even the best, take work and constant checking in and devotion. Love is not always enough and rarely comes easily over long periods of time; insta-love or not. 2) To the adults who say this is a life changing book... Sorry but you should realize your life is whizzing by without you engaged as you look for your man (or woman) on a white horse ready to "save" you. That doesn't exist!! My partner "saved" my life from being boring and cliche. But I "saved" me too for being open to said change and risk; instead of being destined to be a little old lady who lives with her books and stitching. I will (hopefully) be a little old lady who loves her books and stitching and has had a great time in her life with the man that is still beside her making everything funner than you thought possible. 3) Yes, you may have guessed this; I knew and was friends with a boy who died when we were both 17. He died of CF and it was neither romantic nor beautiful. He was not my boyfriend at all. But I think love comes in many forms. Let me say: It downright sucked. Period. End of discussion. Do I think on him fondly? Of course, but he is immortally 17 and that bothers me a lot. As I'm not sure he'd like being remembered 15 years later as a 17-year-old were he alive today. Does this make me feel that cancer/disease dying books are glorified with their struggles and cures? Yes, yes it does. 4) A good friend's baby died (age 2) a couple years ago and it was easily the most devastating thing I've EVER experienced. Not just because we did the sick, then remission, then dead dance. But because there was again nothing romantic about it. Nothing. It just sucks. Not for me personally in the way it was for my friend. If I found it devastating I won't even try to pretend what it was/is like for her. I detest how people like to think that family or parents will "accept it" or "move on" or whatever. Those people, to me, have never yet felt crippling loss like the loss of a baby (no this is not a 1-up game; example, this tragedy is worse than this). The truth is that some deaths are more tragic, it seems to be human nature. Once your time is over with that loved one it doesn't matter how much of it there was it still is devastating. Therefore teens dying instead of 30-somethings dying can be equally awful, for different reasons. This is is eluded to in this book but not developed enough for my satisfaction. 5) Finally; I live with a chronic pain illness and take a bunch of drugs everyday. They allow me so called "quality of life". I'm lucky that I still can work and get to maybe 75% of my social engagements most months. There is nothing and nobody around me that is saying (or should be saying); "wow what a fighter" or likewise. Why? Because if I wanna live my choices are chronic pain illness or nothing. There's really no choice in being a fighter and most people would absolutely fight because again, human nature. It doesn't make you special just makes you human with a desire to live.
The Fault in Our Stars gets one thing absolutely right and that is that pain sucks. And it's 100 times worse when you are hurting those around you, even if there is nothing you can do.They do discuss this somewhat well with the idea of being a ticking grenade amoungst family and friends.
If you take one thing away from this book take this thought. Death is inevitable, we are not immortal. So do something with your life, that isn't waiting around for Augustus or Hazel to "save" your life from its dreariness.
- Written by a jaded, cynical, sometimes-bitch who hates "make you cry" books(less)
I adored the non-crime parts of this book. But also had some great hatred for the killer (whom we know right from the get-go). As always an excellent,...moreI adored the non-crime parts of this book. But also had some great hatred for the killer (whom we know right from the get-go). As always an excellent, quick read from Robb (Roberts) and always worth the time to enjoy. (less)
To start: this is not a time travel book. It's a book that has time travel is an insignificant part of the story; and in fact the time travel aspects...moreTo start: this is not a time travel book. It's a book that has time travel is an insignificant part of the story; and in fact the time travel aspects really only work to tell the same story from different perspectives without getting to know a new character.
Life after Life is really a story about a girl and her life (or lives as she reincarnates) during 1910 (her birth) to just after WWII. The stories (reincarnations) vary between her in England, a citizen of Germany, through different men (husbands & affairs) and many other scenarios. The book is really about life growing up in England prior to WWII and the different choices we make that affect our outcomes.
The writing of the book is fantastic. Very indepth and draws you in. There are some slow moments, and many times I wondered when the time travel would really "matter". As opposed to just being the mechanism that allows for Atkinson to tell the story many different ways without ever getting to know a new character. It's quite brilliant actually.
I'd say overall this is a 3.75 stars for me. It does drag in a few places and the ending didn't quite provide me the time travel explanation I hoped for. However, there is one twist at the end that makes it well worth the read. It's also interesting to see how many different directions ones life can go based on the smallest things. Overall a very well written book, interesting and intriguing. If you love WWII literature then definitely read this clever book! (less)
I can't believe I read a "zombie horror" book. Let alone that it would leap to my favourite books list immediately. This book is clever, smart, unique...moreI can't believe I read a "zombie horror" book. Let alone that it would leap to my favourite books list immediately. This book is clever, smart, unique and terrifying in so many ways. The presentation so is intelligent. To tell a story of a zombie war, AFTER the war is over and from the perspective of the survivors. It creates an almost romantic look at people; right along side terrifying the reader into wondering what their fate would be in this crazed, panicked world. There is a 'chapter/story' about a regular family in the suburbs of a big US city that hear the first 'sounds' of the "Zacks" approaching in their neighbourhood. Just like what would likely happen to my partner and I. It has stuck with me during the entire book and likely will into the future. Disturbing and yet will remind me to decide when it's safe and when it's not on my own in future panic situations.
I almost think the doomsday preppers are right after reading this book... almost.
Don't be afraid to read this because it's zombies. It's so cleverly written that you will be so engrossed in it you'll almost forget to be afraid and just want to keep reading! Max Brooks has created the future we all dread and loaded it with scientific predictions, insanity situations and quislings (which are the most terrifying of all the monsters in World War Z).
Just trust me, even if you never read horror, hate zombies, war or fear mongering books; read World War Z. You'll thank yourself for being a small sliver in the massive hype around this book. And that hype is (surprisingly) well deserved. (less)
The Icove premiere! I never ever have anything bad to say about this series. Continues to be fantastic indulgent romance, with some fight, reading. Le...moreThe Icove premiere! I never ever have anything bad to say about this series. Continues to be fantastic indulgent romance, with some fight, reading. Let there be more and more of Eve, Roarke, Peabody and friends. (less)
This book is quite different from what the back of it tells you. Don't be alarmed, it doesn't mean it's not good, it's just not about the cop Joona. I...moreThis book is quite different from what the back of it tells you. Don't be alarmed, it doesn't mean it's not good, it's just not about the cop Joona. It's really about Erik the Hypnotist.
While I did not feel this book was spectacular. I was a decent read. Unlike in the Swedish translation of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo this Swedish translation is less challenging. The locations are irrelevant and no prior knowledge of Swedish politics are required to understand it.
That said, there are some inconsistencies and weaknesses in the story. They don't ruin the journey of the read or the action, excitement or trauma of the characters. But, for me, they did make me think afterwards that the fore shadowing was not very good and that it wasn't as good as I had hoped for.
A decent read? Yes A must read? No, unless you adore murder mysteries or Swedish translations. :) (less)
One of the best of the series to date. This book is much darker, disturbing and sexy than some of the others. Camille's books are always my favourite...moreOne of the best of the series to date. This book is much darker, disturbing and sexy than some of the others. Camille's books are always my favourite and this one does not disappoint. (less)
For a science fiction/ fantasy book written in the late 90 Archangel has a surprising amount if culture to it that is relatable to technology today. T...moreFor a science fiction/ fantasy book written in the late 90 Archangel has a surprising amount if culture to it that is relatable to technology today. The overall themes here are love (of course), race/ethnicity and religion. It's a great metaphor to today's segregated society. And reminds us all that no matter what there's always something to divide people. So choose a side and be ready to defend it; or pick based on the person you love, as this story goes. I'm definitely interested in reading the next couple books that follow in Archangels footsteps.(less)
Another solid book by Howard. Not as interesting or intriguing as the first one. But it's hard to top soul sold to Satan I suppose. Still a great read...moreAnother solid book by Howard. Not as interesting or intriguing as the first one. But it's hard to top soul sold to Satan I suppose. Still a great read. The constant wit, irony and amazing writing of Howard will continue to bring me back to his Cabal stories for as long as they are being written. (less)
I really enjoyed this book for the first 400 pages. The last 10 pages were a bit disappointing. A loose ending with no real substance to it. Almost as...moreI really enjoyed this book for the first 400 pages. The last 10 pages were a bit disappointing. A loose ending with no real substance to it. Almost as if the author just decided he was done and gave up.
Truly sad as the rest of the book is magnificent. Cleverly woven together and 'magical' without being outrageous. The look at magic versus mental health is quite interesting in this book. And while mostly I took it for the magic of literature, I also often felt the author was telling us something of what our minds create and how distorted the world can be.