**spoiler alert** "Comfort math" what can be funnier that? The Cinderella Theorem is a basic teen girl coming of age story but with the hilarious devi**spoiler alert** "Comfort math" what can be funnier that? The Cinderella Theorem is a basic teen girl coming of age story but with the hilarious device of the heroine doing math problems to solve her angst, understand fairyland, and to enjoy herself. If things get really too sticky to deal with the heroine brushes her teeth (and so finds somebody looking at her from the other side of the mirror). The novel is full of wonderfully farcical elements--unbeknownst to the heroine her dad who she thought was dead has been coming daily to visit her Mom via the bathtub. She always wondered why her Mom was always so distracted. It is great to have found such a delightful Indie novel. I'll be buying more of Kristee Raven's books....more
Not one but two highly original premises: one, a woman suffering from narcolepsy has great magical powers because a certain type of magic can only beNot one but two highly original premises: one, a woman suffering from narcolepsy has great magical powers because a certain type of magic can only be done when asleep; and two, every single woman in a city is mysteriously pregnant even if a virgin and even if having gone through menopause. Brood of Bones is an intelligent, well paced, well plotted story. Read it, you'll love it like I did....more
These are brilliantly, elegantly written horror stories. However they scared me so badly I just could not finish the book. If you like literary horrorThese are brilliantly, elegantly written horror stories. However they scared me so badly I just could not finish the book. If you like literary horror that is very, very frightening, you'll love this book....more
Happily, I recieved Illusion as a Goodreads firstreads giveaway. I would have had my review up sooner but I had a bad bout of the flu and then of tendHappily, I recieved Illusion as a Goodreads firstreads giveaway. I would have had my review up sooner but I had a bad bout of the flu and then of tendonitus.
Illusion by Frank Peretti is a rollicking good yarn! While the language level of this novel is quite low, anyone with a junior high level education should be able to read it easily, the storytelling is fully mature and well-seasoned. "...hit a 'ta-da pose'" a phrased used regularly, is an example of the simple, clear but artless language level. Dane, a middle aged man, loses his wife of many years just as the couple are about to retire from a brilliant career as magicians. Mysteriously, he is warned that if he meets a young girl who is just like his wife was at the girl’s age, the meeting and the young girl are a danger to him. Despite the warning, he trains the girl in magic, finding her as greatly talented as his wife. The girl is Mandy, Dane’s late wife, but she has been convinced her belief in that identity is a delusion. Dane does not fall for the young-again Mandy, for who he loves and wants is his wife of many years, not a teen-ager—a solid, characterization of how mature people do behave. This maturity of viewpoint was an aspect of the book I particularly enjoyed; Illusion is a story of good people. Dane and Mandy react to their misfortunes with decency, while the antagonists’ reprehensible actions cause the guilty confusion, hurt, or ire, realistic depictions of the world. I did not like at the periodic heavy-handed references to Christianity which seemed inserted as proselytizing devises rather than organic elements of the story. There is danger in Dane's meeting with Mandy, mortal peril. Dane and Mandy must work together in ways they do not expect to save not just Mandy but existence itself. Really, Illusion is a walloping fun read! I'd love it to be made into a movie! ...more
One quibble: copyright should not be abandoned. There are thousands of books in the public domain for today's writers to use as models and inspirationOne quibble: copyright should not be abandoned. There are thousands of books in the public domain for today's writers to use as models and inspirations.
While by-and-large I enjoyed this book, I found the main character a bit of a pompous, self-lauditory, pseudo-intellectual. She can speak all of theseWhile by-and-large I enjoyed this book, I found the main character a bit of a pompous, self-lauditory, pseudo-intellectual. She can speak all of these languages, recite the theories of Great Men, but she cant' figure anything out. Her lack of ability to correctly analyze situations furthers the plot. This makes it all realistic, but I go to fiction for truly intelligent characters not ones who just think they are and are able to wow people because they speak many languages. I'll be reading more of this author's work because Berg does have a command of language, a great sense of story, and some worthy character (I love Dante, the Librarian, and the Queen's fool brother.)...more
Yeah for a for a very good Indie book! I'll definietly be buying more of Siregar III's books! What I really liked was the author's courage. Siergar taYeah for a for a very good Indie book! I'll definietly be buying more of Siregar III's books! What I really liked was the author's courage. Siergar tackled something most people stay far away from, the nature of war perpetuated by vain-glory, self-aggranizement, greed, and the individual soldier's fear that if the war is wrong, should not ever have been fought, then he lost his leg or his buddy's life for nothing, that all that hellish suffering is for nothing if the war is stopped. It is much harder to stop a war than start one, as Stiergar so well exposes in his novel, so waging peace is the greater valor. I kept cursing the characters and wanting them to stop their war, but Siregar has it right, those sorts of characters he protrays don't want to stop war. Good on you Siregar, good on you!...more
This is fine piece of literary writing. The reason I gave it 4 stars is that sometimes the artfulness of the writing called attention to itself so mucThis is fine piece of literary writing. The reason I gave it 4 stars is that sometimes the artfulness of the writing called attention to itself so much that it threw me out of the story. Also the story just stops instead of finishing. I really don't like it when a story feels unfinished. Otherwise, this is one of those gems lovers of fine literature should not miss....more
Oh this is so funny! I love these crazy books and all the literary allusions. I love the play on grammatical errors, writing conventions, and weirdnesOh this is so funny! I love these crazy books and all the literary allusions. I love the play on grammatical errors, writing conventions, and weirdness in English language use. Every single sentence has me chortling away. During dinner, I regal my husband with my favorite funny bits. If you are well-read this is a must read. ...more
I love lyrically told fantasy and The Goose Girl does it. My one major criticism is that the scene where the heroine helps in the delivery of a foal iI love lyrically told fantasy and The Goose Girl does it. My one major criticism is that the scene where the heroine helps in the delivery of a foal is told as a recollection rather than the scene being given in the narrative present. This scene is crucial to the plot and yet its occurance is sketchily describe almost as an after thought. Since the scene was given at the chronologcial time, but as a looking-back at the event every scene related to the heroine's horse friend is weakened in impact. I'll be reading more of Shannon Hale's fantasy after enjoying The Goose Girl so much....more
All the crazy Victorian inventions, technological and genetic, were imaginative and fun. Characters who are historical personages were great fun, too.All the crazy Victorian inventions, technological and genetic, were imaginative and fun. Characters who are historical personages were great fun, too. However about two thirds into the book I stopped enjoying it. The hero breaking off his engagement with his fiancee was not believable because in the Victorian era a gentleman--the hero has a K--can not break of an engagement and still be a gentleman. Indeed the lady can sue for breach of promise. The hero, the cad, prefers to run around with a small guy who has a high pitched voice and likes to be spanked; therefore, there should have been a scene where the finacee breaks off the engagement herself so the man she loves can have the life and lifestyle he really wants. The story eventually moves into a long, boring, and illogical battle during which the protagonist punches Florence Nightgale in the head. (Does this guy have issues with women or what?) The long battle is illogical because battling over the capture of time traveler is over-kill. Cloak and dagger sneakery would have made more sense. At last the hero cad murders the time-traveler, making the prototagonist not just a cad but a vile murderer who has destroyed this reader's ability to like him. The Victorian language was enjoyably artful throughout. I wish the time traveler had made it home, even if he had changed history, and just pretends to his wife and everybody puzzled that history seems different this evening than it was this morning that his experiment did not work and could not possibly work. The best part of this novel was the cursing messenger parakeets. ...more
Such a funny book! Soulless is a great satire on Victorian manners, vampires, and romance novels. The opening is really funny with the heroine glaringSuch a funny book! Soulless is a great satire on Victorian manners, vampires, and romance novels. The opening is really funny with the heroine glaring at the vampire for his bad manners in attacking her without a proper introduction. On the negative side, the plot itself is formula and the book is quite gory at times. [I'm also tired of the "dumb blonde" trope; its a form of bigotry that has caused problems for my cousin and me and probably many more blondes.] While there are occassional modern-language-use slips such "vampire-on-vampire," the Victorian voice sings along very humorously. I really love the recurring comic thread regarding the uses of hankerchiefs. Thank you, Miss Carriger for a truly funny book!...more
**spoiler alert** Disturbing and tragic, The Unit asks questions about definitions of strength, creativity, and worth. Highly educated, creative peopl**spoiler alert** Disturbing and tragic, The Unit asks questions about definitions of strength, creativity, and worth. Highly educated, creative people are the ones who tend to end up in the "Unit," the place where those who are unnecessary to socieity end up. To be needed, a person much either be a parent or hold a necessary or high paying job. Holmqvist suggests that most creative people maintain, for whatever reason, a childishness or child-like quality which is the font of their creativity. While their childishness fuels their creativity it also holds them back, at times prevents them from finding a partner in life, taking on the resonsibilty of children, or holding responsible (non-artistic) jobs. Further, men as naturally stronger, are required by law to not "take advantage of their male strength" by doing physical work more effecitively than women and, by implication, not excelling over women career-wise either. Gender equality, parenthood, and economic productivity are the norms all adults must meet or face the reaping of their organs at age 50 for women and 60 for men.
The main character is told she is strong because she is in excellent physical health and knows her own mind, and those qualities are assumed to mean that she is also strong and independant emotionally. However, she knows she is not strong emotionally, she is shy and unsure of herself and needs the encouragement and emotional support of those she loves. How she finds this support in her quiet life as a single woman is secret from the authorities are not counted as important. She has a secret lover. She relies on her elder sister for emotional comfort, but a sybling is not considered a real need. She loves her dog for daily comfort and joy, but of course animals don't count. All her neighbors know and love her, but this too is under the raider of the rule of law and social opinion. So when at last she is in a place surronded by loving friends, the spirit of her sister (whom the sister murdered as it murders all the "unneeded") a lover who wants to marry her, and an infant, each of these is slowly, mercilessly stripped from her leaving her no emotional recourse but to accept being murdered as well.
As the artistic elite are murdered off with institutionalized rigor, the society becomes more frantic and stressed with people having more children at younger ages, more competition for the needed jobs, but the cut-off age for required death being set lower and lower.
So Holmqvist's The Unit is a true distopia. It is not interested in factual accuracy and the logic of accountants. It is asking important questions about the nature of creativity and its value to society at large....more