Maybe some spoilers... So many of the reviews here already contain excerpts from the book. I'm not going to do that. If you want specific passages so y...moreMaybe some spoilers... So many of the reviews here already contain excerpts from the book. I'm not going to do that. If you want specific passages so you can judge for yourself, click on one of the other one star reviews.
I feel bad giving this book a one star rating for a couple of reasons. First, it was given to me by a friend who thought I'd find the writing style interesting. And secondly, because Mafi took the time to write it, and a lot goes in to writing a book even a bad one, and I hate to just slam an author. But still....
I definitely have never read anything in this style before. There was some interesting imagery. The problem is, most of the time, the imagery didn't make any sense in relation to what was happening. Or it was overdone. Or I couldn't figure out how it was supposed to make me feel. Or, I knew how it was supposed to make me feel, but it didn't. And the strikeouts...well, they seemed a little interesting (if distracting) at first, but eventually they didn't make any sense either. And the phrasing and imagery seemed way too adult for a 17 year old. Even a Dystopian 17 year old.
I guess this is Dystopian. Or Romance. Or, Dystopian Romance. I'm not really sure. I don't read romance, and maybe that's why I wasn't crazy about this book. But I think the real reason I wasn't crazy about it is because it went nowhere. It was not a story. It was just a collection of interesting phrases to describe a total lack of plot. I mean, what happens? A girl is kept in a cell. A boy is put in the cell with her. Then they are taken out of the cell. Then she is taken to one of the leaders of the Reestablishment, who is not much older than her. Then she finds out the boy in the cell is a soldier. Then she escapes with the boy that was in the cell. Then they are found. Then she escapes again. Then they are taken to safety, where she meets people from the Resistance. Then she is given a new outfit that makes her drool-worthy, and it makes everything OK.
yep. that's the "story".
But we never learn what happened to the world, or why there is a Reestablishment, or why people are basically living in detention camps, or what the villain (who is a poor excuse for a villain)is exactly planning to do, and how he is going to use Juliette to do it. And we never learn why Juliette has this curse, or gift, or set of abilities, or whatever it is (which only works when it wants to, and not even that makes sense.) We never learn why anybody has these weird abilities, they just do. We never learn why the boy in the cell and the villain can both touch her without consequences. It's a hot mess.
We never learn why a traditional publisher thought it was a good idea to publish this.
I won't be reading the sequel. (OMG, there's a sequel???) (less)
Few of us give much thought to where our favorite movie and TV actors earned their chops. While it's true that many of them began their careers in TV...moreFew of us give much thought to where our favorite movie and TV actors earned their chops. While it's true that many of them began their careers in TV or movies, it's just as true that many of them did not -- and instead, perfected their craft on the stage.
Fans of John Lithgow, and fans of the theatre will love this book. Written exactly the way he speaks, if you are familiar with the actor, you will hear his voice telling you the story as you read. There is no inside Hollywood gossip or dirt here...the book tells of Lithgow's beginnings...what his young life was like with a father deeply involved in the theatre, and how it formed his opinions of acting and performing. Lithgow LOVES the theatre, and it is apparent in every sentence.
As a youngster, his family moved around often, to wherever Arthur Lithgow's jobs or passion would take him. The elder Lithgow was the founder of multiple Shakespearean festivals, not the least of which is the still-existing Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival held in Cleveland.
The book is a revealing and truthful look at what shaped John's talents and personality. Far from being a "look how great I am" celebrity memoir, Lithgow portrays himself honestly with all his flaws and struggles.
Memoirs, for me, do one of two things: they either make me like the person much more, or they destroy any interest I had in the person to begin with. This was a memoir of the former type...I loved the tone and energy of the book, and it has solidified Lithgow's one-of-my-favorite-actors status.
If you are looking for the scoop on his television or movie career, you won't find it here. That part of his career gets some, but very sparse attention. This is "Drama" at its core.(less)
I received an advance copy of this book for review purposes...or rather, a *partial* advance copy. I don't understand how publishers expect reviewers...moreI received an advance copy of this book for review purposes...or rather, a *partial* advance copy. I don't understand how publishers expect reviewers to develop a complete opinion when they are provided only with a smattering of the entire book.
From what I could see, this looks like a book that would be very helpful to cat owners, especially those with multiple cats. It is designed to show how to alter your living space so it is interesting and utilitarian for both you and your cat(s). The book explains why "catification" is desirable, and how to determine what your cat needs most. It provides a checklist to help you. The second half of the book shows examples of living spaces that were "catified". Each instance describes the clients, explains the problems, and solves them. Lots of photos !(less)
Swamplandia! Is Russell’s follow up novel to one of the short stories that appeared in her debut book, “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves”. A...moreSwamplandia! Is Russell’s follow up novel to one of the short stories that appeared in her debut book, “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves”. As is the case in her short stories, her prose in this novel is impeccable, and her voice unique.
The “Bigtree” family owns and operates “Swamplandia!”, an alligator wrestling tourist attraction in Southern Florida. All of the family members participate in some way, but the star of the attraction is mother, Hilola. When Hilola dies, the family is cast adrift, trying to make sense out of life, and business, and grief.
The Bigtree children are isolated on the family island, and although their upbringing has made them fearless of the swamp, it has not prepared them for the vulgarities and harshness of the outside world. Soon, outside influences begin to unbalance their equilibrium, ultimately destroying who they are and forcing each one of them to transform in order to survive.
As the park is faced with foreclosure, each family member has an idea how to save the business. In what at first seems a traitorous move, Kiwi takes a job at a competing tourist attraction. Fiercely Bigtree, his action is more a poetically naïve attempt to take money (in salary) from his family’s biggest competitor and give the money to his father to save the business. His father, Sam, thinks that the way to survive is to change the show, and he leaves his two daughters on the island to tend to their alligators (or ‘Seths’ as they call them) while he goes off to find “investors”. Ava’s idea has the most merit among them, but she keeps it secret, waiting for just the right time to reveal it. Her sister, Ossie doesn’t have any ideas about saving the park because she is steadily spiraling into madness, driven by her ability to ‘communicate’ with ghosts.
The characters are quirky and the settings are surreal. Some of the locations sent me to google to find out more. The story is told by the youngest Bigtree child, Ava – though after chapter 4, the narrative alternates between third person and first person as the story follows both Ava and her brother Kiwi, who runs away to the mainland. Both narratives tell the tale of each child’s journey to hell and back.
Each of the characters loses a part of themselves in the journey, but also discover the strength inside of them that makes survival possible.
A collection of 16 tongue-in-cheek short stories that describe the many people we meet throughout our lives, only they are represented by various anim...moreA collection of 16 tongue-in-cheek short stories that describe the many people we meet throughout our lives, only they are represented by various animals. Sedaris shines a harsh light on human nature through these wryly funny and sometimes violent fable-like stories.(less)
This is a sweet picture book suitable for all ages. It is a photographic diary of Ted Kerasote's acquisition of a new puppy some time after losing his...moreThis is a sweet picture book suitable for all ages. It is a photographic diary of Ted Kerasote's acquisition of a new puppy some time after losing his dog, Merle. The photos are beautiful, and the text (told from Pukka's point of view) accompanying each one adds to the enjoyment. (less)
Jaycee Dugard chronicles life with her abductor during the 18 years she was missing. She is an amazing woman, both in her ability to have survived the...moreJaycee Dugard chronicles life with her abductor during the 18 years she was missing. She is an amazing woman, both in her ability to have survived the experience, and share it with us, and in her ability to reflect on it and see the experience through new eyes.
My favorite part of the book were her reflections at the end of some chapters, where she comes to terms with her emotions over specific events and analyzes what was really going on in depth.
There are parts that are very hard and emotional to read, but you just have to keep reminding yourself that she is a survivor, and she is going to come through it ok. Saddest of all is the yearning for her mom, and the uncertainty she feels not knowing if her mom is ok, or even looking for her.
A very touching story,told by a courageous woman.(less)
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park covers 521,085.66 acres, and is home to 1,600 black bears. That’s 100 times as many black bears than live at Y...moreThe Great Smoky Mountains National Park covers 521,085.66 acres, and is home to 1,600 black bears. That’s 100 times as many black bears than live at Yosemite. The Park also has more than 9 million visitors per year…so it’s no wonder that sometimes visitors and wildlife collide.
Park Ranger Kim DeLozier loves his job, and his decades in the Park have spawned a collection of sometimes amazing -- and always amusing stories. DeLozier wavers between being extremely adept at his job to being the National Park version of Barney Fife. In his memoir, 'Bear in the Back Seat' he tells his adventures from his early, wet-behind-the-ears days of ranger training, to his days as a vetted ‘I’ve seen everything’ wildlife professional.
Although the memoir includes animals other than bears, (read the rest of the review, HERE)(less)