Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Twitter-style book reviews no. 2
I had intended to just write book reviews on my personal blog, Alice in Faerieland, but then I realized I actually want to keep all my bookish writings separate. Occasionally I will cross post, but I'm too attached to this blog to quit entirely. That being said, I cannot write full reviews of all the books I have read recently (meaning in the last year or so), so here is another quick list.
The Lightning Thief, by Rick Riordan
Fairly good opening to an incredibly popular series. Percy Jackson is a likeable boy, as are his friends. And Riordan (despite the fact that I don't much like his writing style) has a fantastic grasp on Greek mythology, which I greatly appreciate because I was obsessed with it when I was a kid. (I feel bad putting this book in this list when I just finished the second one and am going to write a full review, but I read this last summer so the details are not as fresh in my mind....)
Cloud Atlas, by David Mitchell
Where do I even begin with this one? It was a confusing and honestly hellish ride, but I absolutely loved it. Mitchell has a unique way of showing how we as humans are all connected in ways we may never know. I truly wish I had actually penned a review upon finishing the book, because there's no way I would get it right a year later. Sigh. It's definitely worth reading, though. The film...ugh. No.
Fruits Basket, Volumes 1-4, by Natsuki Takaya (link to volume one)
Ah, manga, how I love thee. And I wish I had managed to keep up on reading Fruits Basket because I may need to reread these four volumes before moving on. The series is long, but manga is easily consumed. I find Fruits Basket to be an adorable tale, and that's really all I have to say at this point, haha. Must read the rest.
Translucent, Volume 1, by Kazuhiro Okamoto
All I recall about this manga is that it was adorably romantic and the main character, Shizuka, has Translucent Syndrome, which causes parts of her body to basically go invisible over time. I don't know how many volumes there are of this and I intend to find them.
Pita-Ten, Volumes 1-3, by Koge-Donbo
Yes, I was on a manga kick for awhile last summer. It happens. Often. And then I discover that my library only has a few volumes of a certain series and totally forget about it until I go back and look at what I read on GoodReads. Anyway, Pita-Ten is one of those that I feel like was written mainly for the cutesy factor. Misha, the main character, is an adorably hyperactive angel who is living on earth, and given her hyperactiveness, hilarity ensues. The translation is a little over the top, which I have noticed my fellow GoodReads people agree with, but oh well. Must find and read the rest of these. I truly dislike leaving a series unfinished, unless I hate it with a passion (I'm looking at you, A Song of Ice and Fire.)
William Shakespeare's Star Wars: Verily, A New Hope, by Ian Doescher
I truly have no words for this utter masterpiece of a retelling of one of my favourite movies into the gorgeous prose of one of my favourite writers of all time. Ian Doescher has created a moment of perfection. This is worth reading aloud, by the way.
Between Shades of Gray, by Ruta Sepetys
This is one of those YA novels that I found at the bookstore and brought home and left sit for months on my dresser. It is a historical novel, an account of a Lithuanian teenage girl and her family who are deported to Siberia during WWII. The writing is lyrical, Lina is a truly believable character, and the situations these people went through made me cry. I don't even want to tell you anything else, just read it.
Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher
This was a gorgeous and sad book. Clay, a high school student, receives a set of tapes that turn out to be from Hannah Baker, a girl whom he had cared for who had committed suicide. The tapes reveal her reasons for killing herself. It is a chilling account of how lies and rumors can hurt a person...and it makes you never want to spread a terrible rumor ever again.
The Towers, by Jordan Jeffers
First off, one of my best friends painted the cover of this book, so there's that. Second, this is epic fantasy in the tradition of Tolkien. And third, it was sort of difficult to read at times, but it was one of the most beautiful fantasy novels I have ever read, with true sacrifice being a central theme. This is one of those that I will read again, and will most likely write a more detailed review. I cannot do it justice right now.
Death Note, Volumes 1-12, by Tsugumi Ohba & Takeshi Obata
Oh look, a manga series that I managed to finish! This series gripped me in a way that I haven't experienced recently with manga. It was fast paced, hilarious at times, and raised many interesting questions about the morality of killing. Light Yagami, the main character, is a high school student who discovers a notebook which turns out to be a Death Note of a shinigami, a Japanese god of death. He learns he can kill anyone whose name and face he knows, so he begins to rid the world of criminals. Soon the Japanese Police are on the trail for this killer, known only as Kira, with the help of a teenage (I assume) genius by the name of L, who happens to be my favourite character. This is a series that I would recommend to people who have never even read any manga, honestly.
Okay, I'm caught up now, with the exception of a few that I most recently finished. I will be writing complete reviews of those, including A Series of Unfortunate Events, by Lemony Snicket. Not each book separately, though!