Truth - I had watched the movie version first and I do find it oddly attracted to the movie in many ways (the performance, the story, the theme) that I truly enjoy it a lot. What I did not was reading the book first. I had this with me for a year over now and last month, I decided (based on a mention) to read it and it was then, I never thought how honest this book turns out to be. There are many realistic themes about this book that makes it not just sad but emotional, troubled but relief and undeniable but real... because in reality, there are no happy endings. Just closure.
Pat Peoples was released from an institution he could not remember why he was there in the first place. At age 34, staying with his parents is the only way he could recuperate his mental health. With a football season starting, Pat has to improve himself physically and started reading books to return to his wife Nikki, so that his 'apart time' is over. He can't wait to go back to his wife until he befriends Tiffany, his friend's wife sister and the secrets they both block and keep together in their own way to come to terms with their hearts and mind.
Its not easy to write characters that are broken and in ways, how damage they become. I can relate a lot with Pat Peoples and most of all, people who do not understand him well. Much like how TiffanyPats and his family and friends, the joy and happiness and the opposite of it. The anger and opinions about the books Pat reads and how he needs help from people he never expect. Its what I believe why this book works because its real. For me - a real positive message is better than a hopeless positive message advice given and for a long time now, I never thought I would read a book that really hits it. Although the movie adaptation and the book had a lot of difference in terms of content, both in their own way is good except I like the book better.
My first 2018 book rated very highly because this book makes me feel in so many ways that I can say I loved it a lot and its one of my favorite reads. I would highly recommend to readers who doesn't believe happy endings are real but believe that we are all part of life to who wants to be happy but not in a Disney way.
Some ideas are good, some can be difficult to write. When I pick up Every Day by David Levithan, it the idea that I find interesting, a plot that makes me wonder what happens if we live in a life of someone each day. With the upcoming movie adaptation releasing next year, I am intrigued and it give me a reason to read the book.
Every day, A live in a life of a sixteen year teenager. Every single day, he will live a life of a sixteen year old, whether it is a boy or a girl, and do what he or she to do on that suppose day. It was then until he met Rhiannon, he fell in love. The trouble is every day, he wakes up in a different body. Every, single, day. His desire to be with Rhiannonallows him to open up to her but how can A be able to maintain a relationship if every single day wakes up as a different person?
This is the main plot of Every Day. It started off interesting, and then it became a melodrama that has interesting and yet thought of to a point, the execution turns out to be a little draggy. While David Levithan points out the importance and the problems A, I can't help but feel this is going to end as tragic as its meant to be. What I did not enjoy is how he drags 90% of the book of it and then, it gets interesting and then it ends with a cliffhanger and an expected sequel to be release next year. To me, I didn't like the way its done because many of the chapters feel unnecessary and even if its part of to show changes in the relationship between A and Rhiannon, I felt its not really done well. Its not that the book is bad, it has its strong points but its just how David Levithan writes it that makes it a little dull. While I am unsure whether I would pick up the sequel and I definitely, I would not read Another Day (its a companion piece, not a sequel), this remains in the future. For me, its a book I can't say its good but its just on a border level of interesting, only it did not give the kind of reading pleasure I want.
NOTE: There is a prequel six additional chapters included in this book for the first time in print and I felt those six chapters makes it more interesting than the main book.
Its Christmas soon and what better way to be in the festive mood than to read a book about the season of giving? So far, I had two and I pick them up one year after the other but I never read them and they were on my shelve for until last Friday I read one of them and I pick this one. So I started to read this last week Friday and managed to finished it early morning today. Here's the thing - I love short stories. They are precise, simple and short. Can be fun, dramatic, romantic and whatever that was meant to be in a genre. So when I read My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Stories, I was looking forward to 'TWELVE HOLIDAY STORIES'. As it turns out - it should be change to 'Twelve ROMANTICHoliday stories' instead. And as I know, its under young adult and although I do want to read Christmas stories, I should have bought 'A Christmas Carol' instead. My fault because I should have known what I am getting myself into.
The question is - is this book worth reading? As you can see the rating above from this review... mehhh.
There are a total of twelve short stories here from today's known young adult authors and so far, all twelve of these stories has the same kind of formulate story you must have read or even watch on television. I mean, there are some nice funny ones and I do enjoy Holly Black, Kiersten White and Ally Carter ones but the rest, I just didn't feel it. The worst one was Laini Taylor because to tell you the truth - at the beginning of the story I had no idea what was going on. Its cheesy, its cliché and it gives no reason why the girls want to kiss the boys first. Although The Girl Who Woke The Dreamer and Polaris is Where You'll Find Me stays out of its modern themes, every single one of these stories must have 'a kiss with a guy' in any way it has to be written. Seriously, I felt it is forced upon. Why? Because... the guy is cute. That's the reason. Whether the guy is a figment of imagination, a God, an elf... the male counterpart is cute. For me, that's what I remember most.
Did I hate it? Not really. Did I love it? Not really. Its just not really the kind of holiday stories I was expecting to be cliché about. Would I recommend this? To teen readers (girls) who love cute guys. Other than that, no.
There are times when I read a crime novel, I always felt the protagonist have to be a hard case hero with a death wish. You Were Never Really Here pulls up that darkness I never thought that is so good, that I am looking forward to the upcoming movie adaptation to be released next year. When it comes to such genre, I always wonder how good can it get. This book, really hits the spot.
Joe is a man with an abused past. He is an ex-marine and an ex-FBI agent and now he is a man for hire for doing dirty clean up jobs secretly for important people. When a senator hires him to retrieve his captive daughter in a brothel, Joe is on a quest with his only weapon of choice - a hammer. Little did he know after rescuing the senator's daughter, he is about to be paid a price in a conspiracy that is unexpected.
I have never heard of Jonathan Ames but it was that movie trailer starring Joaquin Phoenix caught my attention to read this book. Its dark, gritty and straight to your face in 96 pages. Yes, only 96 pages and already its a compelling crime novel I never expect to enjoy. Its not predictable, its straight forward and its brutal. Not many stories about a protagonist that enjoys darkness without light in many books but this hits it right. I can say I love the attitude this book has and how amazing this book turn out to be. If you can handle a dark thriller and if you really love hammer as a weapon, read this.
I love time-travel stories. There are those that really open up a world of twist and turns or, as they say, 'butterfly effect' where one person make one mistake, could change a whole timeline. There are many time-travel stories abound but how many truly know how to write a good one? Well, All Our Wrong Todays is a book I do not know how to give a rating. There are some good points and some bad points and one, probably very flawed consistency of the writing itself. This is Elan Mastai's first book and even though I understand its purpose, the execution isn't up to that standard.
It opens with a narration. Written in such a way like a memoir where chapters are about 2 to 5 pages long. It opens in the year 2016 where life is good. Yes, the future of 2016 isn't much like ours. Hovering cars, functional robots that is dedicated to you, no printed papers and synthesizer food is unlimited. Tom Barren is a son of a scientist named Victor Barren, brilliant in so many ways but not so as a father figure in the family. Tom's mother died a few years back and on the most important day his father wanted to reveal the world his greatest creation - a time machine based on Lionel Goettreider's creation of the Goettreider Engine in 1965. Tom was not a scientist, he's just someone that fails in his life in what he do and wreck things up. Enter Penelope Weschler, a chrononaut in preparation to be the first woman to enter time travel, Tom soon fall in loves with her. And then... some thing horrible happens. Because of that 'some thing' horrible, Tom uses the machine to go back in time only... to create more problems. Hence, created a different time line... one that is our modern day 2016.
Yup, this is how it started. At the beginning of a read, it was good. The narration was good, the pacing was good but some where on the 2nd act of the book, it felt slightly off course. And as I go further, I realize how bad this turn out to be to a point it makes me wonder whether this is going any where. I realize the writing is sporadic. To some point, that this was not the author's voice. Its like he is writing for the sake of trying different styles. Yes, there are moment that are funny and there are moments I just felt lost. What is he trying to prove and the philosophy of time travel is one to ponder. At the beginning, he did mention a few references of famous time travel stories but soon, he is creating an analogy of uncertainty that really push off the reading. Towards the end, it was a book that I did not felt satisfied at all. The ending was just... too convenient. And of course, there is so much confusion in writing that it does leaves me unhappy of why such paradox in outline of the plot.
All Our Wrong Todays is a difficult book to rate. To me, it was good and bad. It was at its interesting moments and then it was at its worst. Overall, it leaves me confuse because I have no idea what was the author's intention. I can't say its a bad book as it has its good points but this is one science fiction time travel book that is no where up there or below. My main problem is there is too much narratives in the book even though its short. If taken away those narratives this book would have been a better read. I do understand the function of writing history of the main and supporting characters main motivation but it does kill it off, especially the theories and its philosophy of time travel. Overall, I can say I can give a hard 3.5 out of 5 star for this but to recommend this book, I doubt so.
Historical fiction is a genre I am most interested to read but have a fear that I might put it down. One week ago, I have heard a lot of good reviews and opinions about The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue and with an upcoming book discussion and Skype with Mackenzi Lee. Here's some thing I have to be honest about - I would never pick up a book with a book cover that features a real person. I admit I was skeptical at first but after a while, just trusting my intuitive I give it a go and read it.
I have no regrets in the end.
Set in a 18th century period, The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue begins with Henry 'Monty' Montague, a care less, young drunk charmer who happens to be a born gentleman from a high-class family waking up next to his best friend Percy, one day before their Grand Tour around Europe. Tagging along is Henry's sister Felicity, who is on her way to a boarding school. Every thing was thought as plan by Henry's father, only that it goes very wrong because of Monty's behavior that leads to (surprise) an unexpected turn of events filled with adventure, mystery, conspiracy, a little bit of science and of course, romance. For a young adult book, its a fun read. What is more surprising is that its so light and easy, its enjoyable in many ways. While its pretty straight forward, its the combination of all that makes this relaxing that doesn't need much deep thought but just sit back, rest and drink your preferred tea (or coffee).
I would recommend this without a doubt for anyone who wants light reading or a historical buff but in a young adult manner. I can't say much as it will spoil a whole lot more but this is a book, despite how people say never judge a book by its cover, should pick it up and read it.
This was a hard decision on whether I would give it a 3 or a 4 star rating but in the end, the overall of the book won a 4. It took me a while to finish this (again, I am beginning to delay in reading) when I began since October and now its December already! Anyway, once again I love how the world building is but the 3rd sequel focus on a young Sophos, last seen in The Thief, in his perspective on how he became the King of Sounis. After been captive by Medes (twice), slaved and fought back, A Conspiracy of Kings has every thing as it turns out except that I felt the first few chapters were very slow. As how it was delivered, the promising part of unexpected events turns out well in the consistency of writing, character and plot. While (been bias now) I rooted for more Eugenides to appear in this book, his appearance is much lesser but when he does appear, its once again a favorable wind that perks up the reading. Still, this is one series I am still in any way following due to its writing and world building. Of course, I can't wait to see what will happen next and I am one book away to read Thick as Thieves and hope I can read it when time permits. This, again, is a book I would recommend to anyone who started from the beginning.
It's my first time reading Adam Silvera's book. When I picked up this book, it was the title, not the synopsis that drew my attention - They Both Die At The End. That's a title that I felt so bold and daring that gave me a reason to picked it up. I managed to finished it after my book discussion. To my relief, its a good book. Nothing glorifying and nothing horribly written.
In the near future, Mateo receives a call from Death-Cast (a company that predicts death) that he is going to die today. On the same morning itself, Rufus receives a call as well that he is going to die today too. Both are total strangers in their own way. Both have no idea how they would die but only they know, that they want to reach out to someone... and they found each other through an app. As they start their journey together in one day before their demise, they do what they can to start living and make the best of it.
Yes, there is no doubt as the title says, they really did die at the end. There is no twist, there is no sneaky trick that will make you believe one of them will survive but indeed, they both die at the end. But why read a book when I know the ending? For one, its the writing. Its good and nicely done and although the execution is similar to Nicola Yoon's The Sun is Also a Star, its the characters that work. Sadly, the world building background is rather vague that we need to accept that this is how it is in our alternate reality of our future. Much like a Twilight Zone episode for me. Still, with short chapters, easy to read and yes, it can be a sad ending... I did not feel emotionally attached to the book. In other words, I did not shed a tear. Don't get me wrong - I do enjoy reading it. Its just not enough to pull me under the covers and think about what would I do if someone I loved knows I am going to die today and what will be my parting words? I felt it was not that strong enough to pull me there at the end but overall, its just good writing that I enjoy. One thing I know, there are some aspects that Adam Silvera explore about death but since this is a YA book, its theme is light and good enough to accept in any other way. Although I did not read his two previous books, I would say They Both Die At The End is a good book to read in one sitting.
Here's some thing about me - I am an ISFP personality introvert after a personality test. I never thought myself to be an introvert before (for those who know me) but looking back, I was pretty much shut-in myself then before I met someone from a past that brings out the best in me. Quiet Girl in a Noisy World: An Introvert's Story has been a book I look forward to read. I stumble upon Debbie Tung's work through Facebook and her work spoke true about introverts and this nicely drawn book says so much about introverts that I can connect with. Its a beautiful written work that I can read and read again. The humor, ups and downs of an introvert and the angst of being an introvert spoke true. This is an autobiography drawn book about her life, from the final days of college to adulthood, marriage and self-love captures every thing true for introverts today. I for one would recommend this as it can be a self-help guide for those who are going through some thing they do not understand about themselves. Quiet Girl in a Noisy World is a comic book for all personality types to enjoy.
There is a unique voice in I Liked My Life and it comes from Abby Fabiaschi. As I read it, I never thought it would be poignant for me and it does, in a sentimental way. This is a book that talks about loss, connection, healing, redemption and forgiveness in ways it was never predictable. Most books would have their characters stayed on to the very end in a formula that ends with a practical approached in writing. I find this emotionally well-written, and although I did not shed a tear (for my own personal reasons), I do find this book important and should be read.
I Liked My Life talks about one family in three perspectives - Madeline, whom recently died from committing suicide still lingers on in spiritual form, Eve, a distraught seventeen year-old daughter in disbelieved that her mother died suddenly and was ashamed of her death and Brady, Eve's father and husband to Madeline who blamed himself for Madeline's death. As I read on, what draws me in are the depth in the characters that are written. Then, I loved most of the characters that interacts so well together as real as what families are. And what makes it work is how it was handled in it. Every single chapter reveals parts of the characters that really makes you closer to them. Every single dialogue was written in how real people deal with their loss. Its a love story about family, what keeps them together, the secrets family members keep and the importance of compassion. I was trying to gauge the story but in every single chapter, I thought I could predicted it. Turns out, as realism gets, its different in some levels that life isn't what we expected but through help, what we needed is the least expectation.
For me, I would have given a higher rating of 5 out of 5 star, but then towards the end of the book it was anti-climatic for me. Not to mention, it was used before. In a way, it was clever to hide the true reason but after reading that chapter, I was just feeling at a bit of loss at the reasoning. I Liked My Life is a book I would recommend to a certain group of people to read because of its writing, its sheer wit and for those who wants to hug their family members more.
I have a confession to make - this is actually my first Agatha Christie's book. I have never read any of her books and even though I have heard of her, I never once touched her books. So what compels me to read Murder on the Orient Express? Hype perhaps of the upcoming movie? A few months back my favorite bookstore was promoting her works? I can't be sure of which but in the end, I picked it up last August and finally read it this month. It took me a while but eventually, I finished it.
While I never realize this is part of a Hercule Poirot series, it had a setting and a premise that is intriguing. A man dies one night on a train and M. Poirot were entrusted to investigate to find out who is the real murderer. Divided into three parts, the flow of the story for me is well-thought of. There was the introduction of characters, then the depth of the investigation of getting to know each character that were in the train and the deduction through guessing came to the conclusion that is so impossible, it feels real in the end. Every thing else falls into place.
Was I impress? Not really. It started off as a simple murder-mystery where everyone can be a suspect and through interrogation and investigation on the train, a detective (as the greatest of all) make a guess deductions through human emotions and body language to be able to discover truth and lies. I don't know that on this day and age it would work but since it was first published in 1934, its acceptable. Still, I love how its written and there are words I never thought of I can learn from. It's a good book but not really that great to a point that makes it the greatest detective book ever written, even though I heard so much about it. I would recommend to anyone to read this first if anyone wants to read Agatha Christie's stories but I am unsure whether I would continue to read any Hercule Poirot's crime-solving series in the near future.
When I read The Gunslinger, I was not impress. I was not really sure where this book was going until towards the end, turns out to be a quest book. Then, I have my doubts. But what I started from the first book, I had to move on to the second book and it took me a while to finished it. Yes, I took my time to read it and in the end, that long time... was worth it. I read slowly and absorb the words, the intentions and the purpose. In the end, it is once again a quest book with more questions but I am surprise how good The Drawing of the Three turn out to be.
From where it was left off, Roland of Gilead now has a goal. In order seek The Dark Tower, he has to recruit others from other worlds to join him on his quest - Eddie Dean, a drug junkie who loves his brother Henry more than anything else, Odetta Susannah Holmes, a girl that may seem nice but other wise, deadly and a third that I would not spoil it here. What caught my attention was what does drawing of the three means and its said inside pretty much clearly. Still, the entire book is all about how Roland, almost to his dying breath after been attacked by sea creatures like lobsters, with grit, goes through all hell to get these people from another Earth-like dimension (which is our own). For the first time, and even though Stephen King, in his style of writing long narrations of background history so that we get to know the characters involved for the readers, he managed to draw my attention in a way that is suspenseful and it is good. I truly enjoy my reading and that is why I took my time to finish it. Towards the end, even though there are more questions involve, I am looking forward to read The Wasteland soon. If you have read The Gunslinger and you have your doubts, trust me, The Drawing of the Three is worth continuing.
When I read Words in Deep Blue, why I pick it up because of its setting, the concept and of course, the blurb. Then, there is the title. In no time, I took my time to finish reading it and I love every thing about it. Although towards the end I felt it was short for me, I almost felt the right emotions might play it out right if only it was strong at the end but it wasn't. In every thing, I thoroughly enjoy the excerpts of in-between letters within the pages as it was written through the view of two protagonist best friends. Its quite a typical character-driven about two best friends who love each other but never admit and some where along the way, some thing happens and lost and found their way back. And every thing about it is how the people they meet finally put them together and love found their way. But what really set this book that won me over are the written letters, they are the true main strong points of this book.
For me, this is some thing I would recommend to any true book lovers out there. Its beautiful, its poetic and its one that connects lost souls in a world that people believe in materialism rather than passion. I wish I could say more about it but pick this up if you love a book about books, lost loves that later found and what we lose will eventually be found from someone close to us with certainty and commitment.
Modern day fables isn't some thing that is easy to write. The thing about writing such short stories it takes a lot of imagination to turn some thing that is like a fairy tale to some thing that suits the current modern day genre. But Tales of Falling and Flying some how, found its unique voice. And with that, I am glad that I pick up this book and read it in 2 days.
From the first short story 'The Dodo', I was in a good way speechless that this story got me thinking. There's a reflection in this story that touches on human nature, even though the story is about a dodo bird who thinks is a dodo bird but actually is a chicken since dodo birds are dead but deep down inside, its a dodo bird. Did I get you confuse? Maybe, but if you read it (in which I won't reveal much here), the metaphor is much deeper here. This is how Ben Loory found his mark as a writer. He writes what he wants to write. He writes about sad tales, love stories, science fiction with a touch of humor and even fantasy. He writes about animals that talks and do weird things. He writes about people that do weird things. In short - these are weird stories and its not a bad thing. It is his way that I love so much about it, that brings fresh new voices in the writing genre and I doubt there is anyone out there that really knows how to write a good modern day fable stories none other than him.
If not for a few stories which I do find it not to my liking, I would have given this a 5 rating but with 40 short stories in this book, 4 rating is what I would give plus I would recommend anyone who likes modern day fable tales or some thing that is weird.
Picking up Uncomfortably Happily was a personal reason of mine - to really understand what is it like living in country side. This manhwa graphic novel is a semi-biography of Yeon-Sik Hong, a struggling procrastinator artist that struggles to meet its deadline and his supportive wife living near a mountain side further away from Seoul. As they rented a house over there, memories were made, animals were loved, and other troubles assured. As he tries to complete his and revise his drawings and studies in school, he re-discovers life on the country side is so much different than living in a city. Once there, life became free and easy.
I truly enjoy the story and the simple artistic approach of this book. While it does show in a realistic way life living on the mountains can be tough, they were happy and they did give reasons why they are living happily. While situations can be difficult, the couple do what they can to survive and manage to live a life happily before they were forced to move out because of change. Its a nice read and nothing deeper to it. I realize one of my dreams to live on the country side I understand such struggles are real, its a matter whether I can survive in situations that Yeon-Sik Hong experiences. I truly enjoy this book and would recommend if anyone wants to read about life living on the country side.
Trilogies is a tricky thing to write. When I first started reading A Court of Thorns and Roses, I have no expectations as I know its a start of a series from an acclaimed author of Throne of Glass. As I had heard its a rendition of Beauty and the Beast young adult fantasy style, it was more of a surprise of how it was written. I was hooked and I wanted more. A year later the released of A Court of Mist and Fury changes every thing I learned in reading - it was one of the rarest books that I would give 5 out of 5 star. It was a read unlike any thing before and from there, not only I wanted more - I just can't wait. It was reported that the 3rd book would be the finale then and this year after a long wait, I had finally read A Court of Wings and Ruin, the war I have been waiting for and to its end, it is the trilogy that ends as the first arc of the Prythian series.
There is so much I want to talk about but where to begin. For one, its the flow. Its fast, is good and for each chapter it opens up much better than the previous. There is much excitement and suspense that really works well inside. And then of course, the description of the action sequence is well done. It really brings the battle out of the page (for me) that really is what the characters are created. There is depth now for some characters, more side-romance that were crafted well, I felt the pain from Lucien of the unrequited love he had knowing his mate is Elain that still not yet embrace him. Characters that were briefly mention are now more known of their motivation and what are their motives. I felt how Morrigan having to reveal who she really is and it was well-written on that part, I do felt the pain her. Almost some back stories, the immortals and more were quick to a point that it works. My only dislike was the forced scenes between Rhysand and Feyre when they want to make love, which felt disconnected and then towards the end epilogue of the chapter. The rest played out well.
I am happy that this ends the first arc of the story (like Star Wars played out the prequel trilogy and the main trilogy) that really ends with a satisfying feeling. I was teary of what I thought might happened but if it did (which I will not reveal), it might make a big impact. I do hope next year when the next release will be as good as this but until then, I am glad that I finally finished this and it's a 4.5 out of 5 star for me.
NOTE - I know I started reading in early August but I actually took off reading much faster in late August. My fault for taking such a long time to finished)