Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Begun when the author was only eighteen and conceived from a nightmare, Frankenstein is the deeply distrubing story of a monstrous creation which has terrified and chilled readers since its first publication in 1818. The novel has thus seared its way into the popular imagination while establishing itself as one of the pioneering works of modern science fiction.
Frankenstein has probably got to be one of my favourite classic books. I remember reading it a couple of years ago and wanted to refresh my mind on the story, so re-read it. Frankenstein was written marvellously and contained a combination of eerie and grostique events.  The story takes place in Europe, and many scenes are in Geneva, Switzerland where Frankenstein is from. Is it me or do most dark Gothic books take place there? Many people mistaken the name Frankenstein for the beast, but really it is the name of the creator. The beast is never given a name, and is often referred to as a hideous monster, and demon by town folks and Frankenstein himself.

This story is born when Frankenstein decides to create a companion, but ends up not liking his results thus leaving it alone. Little did he know his creation would come to life and would ultimately lead to his demise.  Through the beginning of the book the reader feels sympathy for the beast because of the emotional trauma he goes through of not being accepted by the human society. Shelley displays the human nature in judging by appearance rather then seeing an individual for who they are. The rejection he feels ultimately transform into rage towards his creator. As the story progresses, the reader (at least me) feel sorry for both characters, but especially Frankenstein's life. I will stop there for fear of any spoilers!

The only complaint I had was that there were some parts where the story kind of dragged with unnecessary scenes, but the ending made up for it. I would greatly recommend this classic to anyone who likes to read something dark Gothic once in a while and don't mind the writing structure of a classic. If you like easy words that are used in modern lingo, then I wouldn't recommend this book for you. But to others, great book, go read it!

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen

After her mom vanished in a stench of drugs and alcohol, Ruby continued to live in the family house alone. Finally found out, the introspective teenager is sent to the luxurious home of her older sister, Cora, whom she hadn't seen in ten years. Everything there seems unfamiliar, uncomfortable, and supremely weird: her fancy new room; her lavish new wardrobe; the exclusive private school where she never quite fits in. Most mysterious of all is Nate, the friendly boy next door who seems to have a deep secret of his own. Synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Lock and Key was my first contemporary book to read. And guess what? I really enjoyed it. The characters (even minor ones)  involved in this book were very critical to the development of the plot. Ruby, the protagonist was such an inspirational character. The beginning of the book portrayed her as the typical teenager with a not so good family. Ruby's dad hasn't been around since she was young, she hasn't seen her sister in ten years and her mother abandons her out of no where and she is left alone until social service come and gets her. Ruby feels she doesn't need anyone's help, especially her sister, Cora's and brother-in-laws, Jamie's help. Ruby struggles to accept friendships, and family. 

Throughout the book she is searching for the meaning of family, as it was one of her projects from her new private school. Ruby meets new friends whom she initially does not accept as friends, just as acquittance. It is a story of a young teenager opening herself up to the possibility of being loved and to love.

I enjoyed reading Lock and Key so much that I am contemplating to reading it again. It is strangely nice seeing a young girl develop so much throughout a book. From being the "leave me alone, I don't need you" type to "I will accept you into my life" way. This is one of those books I can imagine happening in real life to many teens out there. I loved reading about all the characters in this book. They all had their own little problems that they had to overcome. It makes you think that everyone has their problems in life to worry/overcome and that you are not alone. And I believe that is what Ruby learns. In fact she learns and begins to understand life more better that she ends up helping others with their struggles. I'm in love with Dessen's writing. It is beautiful and meaningful that I must get her other books! If you haven't read Lock and Key, I suggest you give it a try ;)

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by the blogger Breaking the Spine. If you want to join in, click the link above !

This is my first Waiting on Wednesday post! I'm looking forward to Witch Song by Amber Argyle which is a YA classical fantasy novel that will be released on September 1st 2011.

 The world is changing.
For thousands of years, witch song has controlled everything from the winds to the shifting of the seasons. But not anymore. All the Witches are gone, taken captive by the dark Witch, Espen.

As the last echoes of witch song fade, Espen grows stronger as winter and summer come within the space of a day. Now she’s coming for the one she missed—a shy, untrained girl of fifteen named Brusenna. 

Somehow, Brusenna has to succeed where every other Witch has failed. Find Espen. Fight her. Defeat her. 
Or there won’t be anything left to save

Sunday, 19 June 2011

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

It's always been just Kate and her mom—and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate's going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won't live past the fall.

Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld—and if she accepts his bargain, he'll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.

Kate is sure he's crazy—until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she'll become Henry's future bride, and a goddess. (Synopsis provided by Goodreads)

The Goddess Test was a fun and short read. I believe I read this book early last month, but I just started blogging so I thought I'd post up a review on it. This book made me feel like I was fifteen again because I remember reading YA's that were somewhat similar to this story. For example like a girl moving to a new school, there's the jocks, the cheerleaders, etc. Usually I'm not a big fan of this type of cliché and try to avoid it as much as I can, but I enjoyed this one. Maybe it was because the writing was good and that it had been a while since I've read this type of book. 

The number one reason why I enjoyed reading The Goddess Test was because I am a huge fan of Greek mythology. Ever since I was in fifth grade I absolutely loved reading the myths. I enjoyed reading about Kate and it was really emotional in some scenes when she was going through the hardship of losing her mother to the illness. Losing a mother is probably one of the most heart breaking thing in the world. I thought Henry was a bit too quiet and believed he could have been a little more out there. I know he's the god of the underworld and all but I didn't find him to have that "sex" appeal. I think it was because he wasn't the bad boy type ha! Maybe in book 2 he'll impress me. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the twist near the ending, it was totally unexpected. If you've read it, you know what I mean. Carter has done a good job in making this story flow, and I didn't feel like it was choppy in anyway. Her writing was great and understandable, which means I am totally waiting for the next book to hit the shelves. Although, I'm disappointed that Goddess Interrupted is released next year! If you like light reads with a mix of Greek mythology go get yourself this book :) I've posted the cover to the next book, although I don't think it's final yet. This image is provided by goodreads.


Friday, 17 June 2011

Follow Friday!

Every Friday Parajunkee hosts what is called Follow Friday. It's where bloggers get to find out something new and interesting about other bloggers. Also a way to meet new book friends. Go check her blog out to find out the rules to participate!

Q: Genre wars! What's your favourite genre? And which book in that genre made it  your favourite?

My latest favourite genre definitely has to be Dystopian. This is fairly a new genre to me. I love books, but haven't always been an avid reader due to different interests. But this year I have been reading non stop. What got me reading the most was when I first read The Hunger Games trilogy. I didn't even know it was classified as a dystopian genre until someone pointed that out to me. After that I read Delirium, and bam I knew that was definitely my favourite genre from now on.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

New books make me smile!

Today I went by the mall, and of course I had to stop by the bookstore. I think the workers there know me by now, since I go there almost once every god darn week. Anyway, I went in there to get The Forest of Hands and Teeth, but they were sold out so  I ended up getting Graceling by Kristin Cashore and Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen.

 I have heard many good things about Sarah Dessen's books so I've decided to go ahead and give one of her books a try. Last week I went by Chapters and picked up City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare. So, I'm excited to read these three books.

Divergent by Veronica Roth

In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself. 

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her. Synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series—dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance.

I picked up Divergent because there were so many people reading it and many reviews and hype about it. Almost all of these reviews I have managed to stumble upon were giving this book 5/5 stars. I have to admit that the rating was rightfully given. Divergent was a wonderful read, and kept me wanting to turn the page no matter what the time was. 

I absolutely loved the characters in this book. Tris was beyond what I was expecting. Tris showed bravery, courage, and yet she had that little bit of weakness that every human being has. Not everyone is flawless. I was impressed and glad that Tris was not portrayed as the whinny, smart mouthed, annoying little girl that most books tend to incorporate in their main heroine. The other character I was quite curious about was Four. During the beginning of the book, Four was mysterious and he did not say much. This made me even  more curious about him. As the book progressed I could see some of his secrets slip away, and his romance with Tris was totally cute. There were times I thought he was being a jerk, but he had good reasons behind that. 

This book resembles The Hunger Games trilogy, but it certainly has it's own unique elements that are different to THG. Veronica Roth is definitely a talented author and knows how to depict scenes in a very realistic manner. I am very excited to read the next instalment of Divergent. If you don't know this, Veronica Roth will be announcing the title of the second book today, so go check out her blog listed on her twitter.  

Thursday, 9 June 2011

The Mortal Instruments: City of Glass By Cassandra Clare

To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters -- never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight. 

As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadow-hunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadow-hunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her new found powers to help save the Glass City -- whatever the cost? (Synopsis provided by Goodreads)

City of Glass is the 3rd instalment of the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. City of Glass has to be my favourite of the three books. City of Glass contains twists and turns that I absolutely loved. I'm not sure for the others out there who have read this, but I didn't expect anything. For those of you who haven't read it yet, you will know what I'm talking about when you read it ;) It is really remarkable at how each character in this book have developed as a fictional person. Almost as like if they were actual people. That's how good Clare has written them. 

Clary, Jace, Simon, Isabelle, and Alec have grown up in such a short amount of time (they had to). You can definitely see the maturity level rise in each character and it gave me that tingly sensation of proudness. I was very shocked at how Simon matured! Maybe it was the vampire in him? I'm not sure, but at the end of the book you can tell he has learned to accept life, and his childish ways have ceased. I loved how he accepts Clary's relationship with Jace, unlike in City of Bones. City of Glass has to be my favourite book from the first three books. 

I am now excited to read City of Fallen Angels! I'm already wondering what adventures wait them, and I think I kind of know who is behind it...For those of you who have not  yet picked up this series, or is seeking out a series to read, do give Mortal Instruments a try! Especially if you love YA mixed with a bit of Paranormal adventure/Fantasy. 

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