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Book Review – You

Title: You [You 1]

Author: Caroline Kepnes

Genre: Thriller, Contemporary

Length: 424

Rating: 5 Star

Series Review: 1, 2

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Description/Synopsis:

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card.

There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting.

As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

This book creeped me the hell out. I mean this in a good way, but the combination of the writing style, unique character perspective, and the great voice acting in the audiobook left me feeling creeped out pretty much the entire way through the book.

And I will never again underestimate the power of anticipation. There is no better boost in the present than an invitation into the future.

In You, we are gievn the perspective of a sociopathic stalker. You follow his actions as he follows and obsesses over a girl that came into his bookstore one day. I think the most confronting part for me about getting things from this perspective was listening to his interpretation of his actions. He looked into them in a way that fed into his delusions but looking at the same things from my perspective or from the perspective of a sane girl of about the same age, I just kept wanting to scream at him.

“NO! YOU ARE A CRAZY PERSON! IN NO WAY DID I DO THAT FOR YOU! YOU ARE WRONG!”

I think the writing in this book was amazing.  I was hooked from the get go and it even made me a little paranoid. I thought it was pretty accurate as to how someone like this would think and behave. I would avoid listening to this book at night because it was just too unsettling.

Other than Joe and Beck, we don’t get very many characters that are really relevant to what is happening in the story. Beck is the main person that Joe is focused on, and he only cares about the other people around them as far as they were suiting his obsessions or if they were getting in his way. I can’t even say I liked any of the characters in the story. There are no golden people in this story. They are all human, and they are all flawed. None as flawed as Joe except for maybe Mr. Mooney who I think just strengthened a lot of Joe’s craziness. But I was so stressed about what was going to happen next, if any of the characters did anything actually good I worried about what Joe was going to do to them because of it.

SPOILER – There was one thing that bothered me about the overall story though. He seemed just a bit too lucky. With all the things he did over the course of the book, he didn’t get busted on anything. He even managed to put some of those things onto other people with seemingly little effort. I don’t know, it seemed to easy. Perhaps I have too much faith in the idea that the bad guys actually get caught. – END SPOILER

The only thing crueler than a cage so small that a bird can’t fly is a cage so large that a bird thinks it can fly.

I am eager to pick up the next book in this duology, but I will be giving myself some breathing space between the two because I just need to get away from the inner workings of Joe’s mind for awhile. If you like thrillers I think you will really enjoy this book. I haven’t read anything with this perspective angle before.

 

Till Next Time. . .

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Book Review – Clan of the Cave Bear

Title: Clan of the Cave Bear [Earth’s Children 1]

Author: Jean M. Auel

Genre: Historical Fiction

Length: 512

Rating: 5 Star (4.5)

Series Review: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

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Description/Synopsis:

This novel of awesome beauty and power is a moving saga about people, relationships, and the boundaries of love. Through Jean M. Auel’s magnificent storytelling we are taken back to the dawn of modern humans, and with a girl named Ayla we are swept up in the harsh and beautiful Ice Age world they shared with the ones who called themselves the Clan of the Cave Bear.

A natural disaster leaves the young girl wandering alone in an unfamiliar and dangerous land until she is found by a woman of the Clan, people very different from her own kind. To them, blond, blue-eyed Ayla looks peculiar and ugly–she is one of the Others, those who have moved into their ancient homeland; but Iza cannot leave the girl to die and takes her with them. Iza and Creb, the old Mog-ur, grow to love her, and as Ayla learns the ways of the Clan and Iza’s way of healing, most come to accept her. But the brutal and proud youth who is destined to become their next leader sees her differences as a threat to his authority. He develops a deep and abiding hatred for the strange girl of the Others who lives in their midst, and is determined to get his revenge.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

This book had been on my TBR since about the time I started reading really. This is one my mum read when she was younger and she was always raving about it and telling me to read it. This however was always followed by “It took me about nine years to finish it because the start is really boring, but the end was worth it.” So as you can imagine I was curious, but also a little hesitant.

But I needed a new long audio book to listen to on my long driving trips I do every day, so I thought why not and picked it up. I am so glad I did.

My mum was right. The start of the book did have one seriously sloe part where the properties of plants was talked about for quite awhile. If I had not had the warning beforehand, and had been reading a physical copy of the book rather than an audiobook, it might have taken me an extra moment to get through it as well if at all. Maybe not nine years, but probably awhile. I think the audio aspect really helped me here, as while I was driving I could start to zone out on the road for the sections that were boring. The voice acting was also very good and easy to listen to.

The rest of the book up until the last chapter was evenly paced and was interesting the whole way. I loved the sort of old magic that came with the Clan and the way Ayla’s new worldness affected them, and her way of thinking about things conflicting with what they have taught her her whole life. Then it rushes at you at the end.

All the characters are well written, at least all the ones you deal with on a regular basis. I love Ayla, Iza, Uba, and Creb. Their family dynamic was so beautiful at times. Ayla’s relationship with the rest of the clan was strained at times but there were shining moments of glory when they accepted her. Brun was a good leading and considering their way of thinking he was very reasonable to her and his act of kindness to her at the end was lovely. Their way of thinking about women though really irritated me and it was hard for my ‘strong independent woman’ brain to swallow the more degrading parts of the book. Broud is everything I hate in someone.

The overall sort of sad tone to the book and the rush of things left me wanting to pick up the next book. I made the mistake to read goodreads reviews though and none of them are too positive and my mum never once told me to read the next one, so now I am oohing and aahing about it. One day perhaps.

If you like historical fiction, don’t mind a bit of plant talk, and are open to history with a bit of magic, I think you will really enjoy this book. The second half is beautiful, and the first half is too between the boring bits.

 

Till Next Time. . .

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Book Review – King’s Cage

Title: King’s Cage [Red Queen 3]

Author: Victoria Aveyard

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Length: 507

Rating: 5 Star

Book Series Reviews: 0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4

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Description/Synopsis:

In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.

As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Oh my god I don’t even know where to begin. If my heart wasn’t ripping in two I think I would have a better time at formulating sensible and understandable thoughts, but it is so I am sorry in advance if nothing makes sense and its just me yelling into the void.

The crushing weight of silence hangs heavy as always. For a moment it’s too difficult to breathe, and I wonder if this is how I die. Drowned in this bed of silk, burned by a king’s obsession, smothered by open air.

For those about to go into this book, the first half is almost unbearably slow. It starts off where the last book finished off, with Mare captured by Maven and we spend six months with her as she is being tortured in various ways. I both really liked and didn’t liek this part of the book. I found it was a bit repetitive in its slowness, and I can fully understand why because as we are in Mare’s head and nothing very much is happening to her other than being tortured, dealing with PTSD, and trying to stay alive as she learns as much about Maven and the court as possible while she is there. I did enjoy learning more about this real Maven we are presented without mother or him pretending to be a golden child to her. Their relationship is really interesting to me because of how alike but different they are, and how they both sort of end up relying on each other to keep each other sane but at the same time breaking each others mind.

I would like to go on record at this point that I do not get all the Maven love that is throughout most of the reviews on this book. Yes, I can understand Maven more now, I can sympathise with more knowing the full extent the job his mother did on him, and I find a lot of his parts interesting. However, he is completely fucked up. There is no fixing that level of fucked or really finding any redeeming qualities in no matter how much this series is about how people are not just good or evil. His mother literally removed all his good parts, he is basically not a real being at this point. He even thinks so. I am interested in seeing how his story ends, but if it doesn’t ed with his death I am going to very disappointed.

Maven Calore is not his own self. He told me as much. He is a construct, a creation of his mother’s additions and subtractions. A mechanical, a machine, soulless and lost. What a horror, to know that someone like this holds our fates in the palm of his quivering hand.

Through all her torture Mare sort of solidifies in her character. Instead of just going from moping about things to electrifying anyone who annoys her, she learns who she is through having to try and put herself back together after truly suffering. She realises where she was arrogant and becomes more likeable. She knows who she is.

The second part of this book basically doesn’t stop moving once it gets going. A lot of political things have been happening in the first half and once the ball of war starts moving it just kept smashing through things and people. The second half of this book is physically epic where the first half was very psychologically breaking.

A new thing we get in this book that I really really enjoyed was that we got two new points of view. In the first half we get Cameron’s point of view of what is happening with the other characters while Mare is with Maven. I really thought I wasn’t going to like being in her head at all considering how much she got on my nerves in the second book, but it actually made me warm up to her. She still isn’t my favourite character but some of the tension between her and Mare is smoothed out and he get more of her inner thoughts that different to just the dumb antagonistic things she says.  The other point of view we got in the second half was Evangeline. Now if I was surprised by how my mind was changed on Cam a bit, you can bet I was bloody surprised when I was excited to get inside her head. I don’t know if I can forgive her for how vile  she was in the first two books, but her points of view were some of my favourite parts of the book.

SPOILER – CAL HOW BLOODY COULD YOU?! I WAS BLOODY ROOTING FOR YOU! I THOUGHT YOU HAD GROWN MORE OF A BLOODY BRAIN! WHY CAN’T YOU LEARN ANYTHING FROM YOUR DAMN MISTAKES?! YOU ARE KILLING ME! – END SPOILER

I kiss him for what could be, what might be, what will be—the last time. His lips feel strangely cold as we both turn to ice.

For those who are reading this reviews and the other very mixed ones online, if you liked the first two, you will most likely enjoy this one. Just get past the first half. Enjoy the emotional trauma knowing that everything starts moving once you get passed it. Just get passed it and you will be here sitting with me and my throbbing heart painfully waiting for the next book to come out.

 

Till Next Time. . .

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Bout Of Books 10 – Day 5 Challenges + Update

Bout of Books
I finally finished a book today. Hurray!

Day 1

Pages Read: 27

Books Completed: 0 (Clearly)

Day 2

Pages Read: 43

Books Completed: Nope still nothing

Day 3

Pages Read: 11

Books Completed: No.. Im so ashamed

Day 4

Pages Read: 68

Books Completed: A Shade Of Blood by Bella Forrest

Challenge One:

 

coverchallenge

Cover Scavenger Hunts are my favorite type of challenges. All the book covers we used are from reviews on the blog from April and May, so happy hunting. 

  1. Hidden: A Child’s Story of the Holocaust by Loic Dauvillier
  2. The Accidental Keyhand by Jen Swann Downey
  3. The Glorkian Warrior Delivers a Pizza by James Kochalka
  4. Fly Away by Patricia Maclachlan
  5. North of Nowhere by Liz Kessler
  6. Entwined by Heather Dixon
  7. The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier
  8. Marathon by Boaz Yakin
  9. The Great American Dust Bowl by Don Brown 

Challenge Two: Rainbow Of Books

Here’s your challenge: Create a stack of book spines from your bookshelf, or post pictures of the covers, that go in rainbow order. So, you start with white on the bottom, then red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo (purple), violet (like a darker purple), and then black! The spine should have at least a majority be the color you are looking for, but just use your best judgement to get the rainbow-like flow.

Check out the host blog here.

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So there are my answers to todays challenges! Link me yours so I can have a look.

Till Next Time…