For my review I'll just ask you, reader, to come with me on a very short visualization. Imagine me...in bed (everything rated G, please) reading the l...moreFor my review I'll just ask you, reader, to come with me on a very short visualization. Imagine me...in bed (everything rated G, please) reading the last 2 pages of this book. My eyes flit across the page as I unknowingly stop breathing. I finally finish the last word. I exhale slowly and place the closed book at my side. I look up at the ceiling and after about 30 seconds of dead silence I utter a single word...'fuck'.
Because I don't want this to turn into the some raving fan girl review I'm going to keep it short. Though I suspect it's still going to...moreHol...y...shit.
Because I don't want this to turn into the some raving fan girl review I'm going to keep it short. Though I suspect it's still going to turn into a raving fan girl review.
I really enjoyed The Passage when I read it. There were some really long drawn out parts in that book that didn't make me truly appreciate it when I originally read it. It was a good book and the beginning of a trilogy I intended to continue with. I understood that the second was a year or so away but that didn't bother me. Whatever. Decent read.
Over the year I would find myself continually going back to the story line of The Passage. I would remember scenes with vivid clarity. Sometimes so vivid I would try to remember what movie I saw it in and then remember it was a book. If anybody knows me they know that I am a HUGE fan of post apocalyptic tales especially when they concern the undead of some wicked blood crazed variety. It's my bread and butter!
So with over a year of remembering the The Passage I started getting really excited about The Twelve. Probably too excited considering my first assessment of The Passage. When my friend Kathy said she could hook me up two months early with the ARC I commenced shitting my pants. Squeeeeeeeee.
Finally this book arrives in the mail (like a week later than we'd planned...F you, UPS) Of course, it appears the day after Labor day...a wasted holiday weekend, I say! and comes at the beginning of what turned out to be a mega epic suck fest at work that had me working ungodly hours of overtime. But finally this last week I was able to sink my teeth in. And what an amazing week it was.
This book is epic. It reminds me of Stephen King's The Stand at first, with a little bit of Dark Tower full circle awesomeness about the middle and ends in a climax of chess pieced badassery not unlike what I LOVED about Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn (sans the idiotic female lead).
Speaking of idiot female leads.......this book doesn't have any. THANK YOU CRONIN FOR BEING ABLE TO WRITE A FEMALE LEAD THAT ISN'T A FUCKING IDIOT, DOESN'T RUN OFF HALF COCKED IN MORONIC EMOTIONAL STATIS AND DOESN'T NEED TO BE RESCUED BY HER MALE COUNTERPARTS EVERY GOD DAMNED SECOND!!!! The female leads in this book are realistic. A few have special powers. A few don't. But they all have strength of one variety or another. One to save the world, one to fight for a cause she believes in, one to fight for the man she believes in and one, the inexhaustible strength that comes from being a mother. That's right, bitches. These ladies are fighting it along with the boys and kicking ass and taking names. Woot!
As for the male leads, equally well written. Peter and Michael are my favorites. Tifty and Greer are almost clichés but at the last minute aren’t. And don’t even get me started on Alicia. These characters in general were great. Character development that rivals JK Rowling and Guy Gavriel Kay in its intensity and effectiveness. I’m living and dying with these characters. Laughing and crying but mainly just obsessed.
And of course, Cronin writes some pretty rough baddies. In The Twelve we get some special insight into the nature of The Twelve and a glimpse into their lives before the world ended and why they are the way they are.
Plus, some pretty bitching references back to the original vampire classic, Dracula. Cronin explores a lot of the classic vampire lore, like crossing moving water, viewing images in mirrors and familiars. Having these comparisons show up in a very realistic modern vampire tale was refreshing. Like adding a tinsy bit of old school goth back into the story.
And Cronin has that thing, you know the one, that thing that is so rare that when you find it, and find it done well, it gives you shivers…he effectively makes you wonder who is good and who is bad. Even amoung the guys that you know are good in your heart if not your head. You really have no idea what is going on until the last 30 pages of this book. And of course everything had its purpose and everything comes full circle.
This book also has the coolest overview of The Passage that I have ever seen. Really creative and really easy to refer back to, if need be. That being said, if you have the time I would really suggest rereading The Passage. I think there are a lot of things that might have been more meaningful to me if I had just recently read The Passage.
And that about wraps it up. So this review did turn into a raving fan girl review. Whatever. I loved it and I can’t wait until the third one comes out…*sigh* next year. Boo! (less)
So there is this type cast wizard character that usually appears in most fantasy novels. Dumbledore, Gandalf, Fizban.....moreI thoroughly enjoyed this book.
So there is this type cast wizard character that usually appears in most fantasy novels. Dumbledore, Gandalf, Fizban...so on. These amazing wizards are usually older, typically 'good' and just understood to have unimaginable powers though, except for a few fights, you don't really see it. You take it on the authors word.
Then there is this book. Young and head strong wizards. Kicking ass and taking names. (view spoiler)[The scene where they pretty much destroy that castle on Benedict (forgive my spelling...I audioed) Island was awesome. I loved the description of the spells. (hide spoiler)]
While I agree that Quentin was, and sometimes remains, a difficult character to like though I think he's gotten a lot better. He's passed the whole teenage angst stage and moved, quite nicely, into something a little bit more commendable. Someone with a pretty decent amount of character and heroism. I like the new Quentin.
I love Julia as a character. Her back story was extremely interesting and I sympathized with her struggle. The involvement with religion into this story was fascinating and extremely unexpected. I loved the idea of it.
What I like most about Grossman's writing is that he writes realistic characters. I completely believe these people and totally understand their motives.
I just wish he didn't leave me at a quasi-cliff hanger with no third book release date in sight. Well I'm going to need The Magician's Land pretty quick ,Grossman. So get on it.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I don't even know how to review this. This book was fantastic and easily the best science fiction I've ever read. Yes, better than Asimov. But I can't...moreI don't even know how to review this. This book was fantastic and easily the best science fiction I've ever read. Yes, better than Asimov. But I can't really say that because this book was akin to Asimov's Foundation in a way. Extremely involved but so enlightening.
What I can't quite get over is how extremely complicated this book is but how very easy it was to read and comprehend. When I look back at the story and the concept and the characters and the science, my head about explodes but I never felt any pressure when reading. What I found was highly plausible and amazing science. I loved every second if it.
And I loved every second that included Jason. My favorite character and the fictional equivalent to the love of my life. If I could transport myself into this book I would marry him, have his genius babies and listen to him talk forever. Literally, I would never say anything and I would sit next to him and listen to him talk and be completely happy forever. *swoons*
My only issue, and it's a small one, is why did the only main girl have to be an idiot? Now I understand that Diane was the storys connection to the religious side of the Spin but couldn't Tyler have been the girl and Diane a boy? Ergg. She was just this stupid idealistic paranoid illogical nut job and quite frankly, nowhere near good enough for Tyler. I never saw what Tyler saw in her but I still liked her as a character. I understood her motivations but I just wish the only idiot of the three wasn't the girl.
I love science. I love books with a ton of science. I'm no good at math which means I will never be able to have a true understanding of science on a theoretical plane. But books like this one put the science I love in a 'real world' application so I can understand in on a realistic plane. Or as realistic as science fiction can get.
I haven't read a book in a long time the elicited such a visceral and emotional response from me. Wow....just wow. Ness killed it on this one. What an...moreI haven't read a book in a long time the elicited such a visceral and emotional response from me. Wow....just wow. Ness killed it on this one. What an interesting and intimate look into the feelings of grief and lose, of guilt and fear. I felt the same way Connor did when my grandmother died and it was amazing for a story of death to involve the guilt of wanting the mutual pain to stop.
This was definitely a great way to start 2012.(less)
I absolutely loved this book. I think aside from the DT series this is my favorite King book. But of course I say that about every King book I read. *...moreI absolutely loved this book. I think aside from the DT series this is my favorite King book. But of course I say that about every King book I read. *shrugs*
Something about spirituality in books really hits the spot for me. Its always interesting to see God from a different perspective. In the end its up to the reader to decide what they thought of God in this story. Or decide if they think King hit the mark or not. Personally, I see some truth in Kings portrayal.
The first part of this book outlines Condy's childhood growing up in the very segregated and especially tense Birmingham, AL during the...moreWow. Just wow.
The first part of this book outlines Condy's childhood growing up in the very segregated and especially tense Birmingham, AL during the height of the civil rights movement. Condy's father was a very influential minister and rubbed elbows with all of the great movement leaders including Martin Luther King, Jr.
As someone born in 1983 it always shocks we when I am reminded that segregation was prevalent during the life time of my parents. Its stupid that it shocks me but it does. It just seems impossible that only in the 1950's were people so short sighted and thick headed that they believed that ridiculous crap about being inherently better and dared to treat people the way they did. Birmingham was the most racially charged city during the civil rights movement and she talks very in-depth about the black community in those times, the political climate and the many deaths at the hands of racial fanatics. A great history lesson for anybody wanting to know more about that era.
The second half of the book outlines Condy's career in academics then eventually in the White House. Its amazing to consider all of the things this woman accomplished. Not just for a black person during those times. Not just for a black woman. But for anybody. Outstanding, inspiring and very moving.
Condy never stops gives her parents all the credit for her accomplishments and the person she turned out to be. She talks often of their sacrifice to give her every opportunity in life and how that affected her life and her choices. I can relate with that because my parents were very similar. A parents role in a child's life has always been very important to me and I really enjoyed this theme in the book.
Admittedly, Condy did loose me a bit in the 3rd quarter of the book when she outlined her position helping Bush Sr. with relations in Russia but that is just because that happened when I was in middle school so I haven't studied the subject at all.
Keep in mind that the book ends right as Bush Jr. gets elected president so if you are looking for insight into that administration you will be disappointed.
I picked up this book based on Condy's interview with Jon Stewart on the Daily Show and I am not disappointed. Jon does everything right.(less)
I should write a review. I've been trying to be good about reviews but I know this one will just turn into a pool of mushy King love. I loved this boo...moreI should write a review. I've been trying to be good about reviews but I know this one will just turn into a pool of mushy King love. I loved this book!
This one took me a very long time to get through. (view spoiler)[ When Eddie and Jake died I set it down and didn't pick it up for a few months...moreDamn...
This one took me a very long time to get through. (view spoiler)[ When Eddie and Jake died I set it down and didn't pick it up for a few months. What was the point? (hide spoiler)] Its finally finished and I'm sad. I'm sad the same way I was when I finished Harry Potter. Its having to say goodbye to great friends and it always makes me a little blue.
Once again I sit here with eggs on my face. This book comes from a genre that I have publically loathed and snubbed. I am the fantasy/sci-fi chick who...moreOnce again I sit here with eggs on my face. This book comes from a genre that I have publically loathed and snubbed. I am the fantasy/sci-fi chick who looks down at girls who spend their time reading 'stupid chick lit drivel’. I think I have good reason to dislike romance books. I think they put unfair and impossible standards on men to which they can never achieve and make ALL women feel inadequate. I mean, if your man won’t fly across the world and bust into your office during the year end meeting to confess his undying love in front of the whole company then you must not be that special…right? For shame.
My problem here is that I managed to clump a lot of different genres under the chick-lit banner including romance, RomCom (is that only for movies?), pretty much anything pertaining to woman’s issues, the occasional Historical Fiction book and most notably, and regrettably, books like this one.
Perhaps I should get to my actual review now. I do not like reviews that begin by having a basic outline of the book but I’m stepping out of my normal pattern so I’m going to roll with it. Liberate myself.
This book is written from the points of view of two sisters; the eldest sister, Riley, who is a single mother living above a small cottage book store on the beach in Savannah, Georgia and her one year younger sister Maisy, who left home 13 years earlier and has made a life for herself in Laguna Beach, California as an interior designer. After their elderly mother takes a tumble down some stairs and breaks a few bones right before the cottage book stores’ 200 year anniversary and can no longer help with the festivities, Maisy is forced to return home for a week to help with the weeklong events. But who should be returning for the event but Mack Logan. The boy who, 13 years earlier managed to break both the girls hearts while maintaining god-like status in their minds and totally ruining their relationship.
So the book is basically about Riley and Maisy defeating their demons. First I should say that I have always, desperately wanted a sister. All I got was a lousy older brother. I’m kidding. I love him very much and am thankful that he’s a part of my life. But it doesn’t change the fact that I want a sister and have spent every day of my life since I was 16 berating my poor mother for closing up shop before my sister/best-friend arrived. Therefore the story revolving around these sisters was bittersweet for me. I like to read books about sisters and I like to read books that have a strong family loyalty theme because it’s important to me in my life.
The only reason I picked this one up was for a book reading challenge and I expected to hate it. I expected it to be filled with Prince Charming’s and more amazing than life heroines who are smart as tacks, beautiful, witty, hilarious and perfect. I expected to roll my eyes every other page. I kind of expected there to be throbbing members and heaving bosoms. None of these things were in this book.
What was in this book were realistic characters. Characters who were insecure, bossy, caddy, selfish, pathetic and most importantly…not good with men. These women made mistakes and had issues dealing with them. It just came across to me as very plausible. I felt like there actually were people out there who had lived this exact story.
Admittedly, it had a happy ending. Everything in its place and neatly tucked away. I usually despise happy endings but I was okay with it. I needed that for these characters. I needed to end this story knowing they would be okay and do right by each other. How totally female of me right? I had hoped that the sappy part of me wouldn’t show up until at least my 30’s. Oh well, embrace it I guess.