Posts Categorized: books

New Laptop and Windows 8(.1)

December 30, 2014 books, fun, miscellaneous 4

I got a new laptop!

I party like Iron Man

I didn’t even plan on buying a laptop, but my old one has been sounding like a lawn mower on ecstasy for the past couple of… well, years. It was basically broken from the start, and I was too lazy and too broke to get it fixed, sooo. Yes, I’m one of those people. #sorrynotsorry What do you mean there are no hashtags on WordPress? WELL THERE SHOULD BE.

lawn mower on ecstasy

I thought you might want to know what a lawn mower on ecstasy looks like.



This laptop is so much quieter than my old one. Whenever the screen goes black because I haven’t done anything in too long, I freak out because I think it has shut itself down because I can’t hear it anymore. I realize that I’m still in the honeymoon phase, and this one will probably develop annoying issues at some point but OH BLISSFUL SILENCE. Now I’m thinking of the Silence in Doctor Who. No marks on my arm (I did actually just check), so we’re good.

doctor who silence

Unfortunately, buying a new laptop means buying a new laptop with Windows 8(.1 if it makes any difference) on it. I have been avoiding Windows 8 for years after trying it out for two minutes on a friend’s laptop a couple of years ago. Let’s just say the experience was frustrating. I was determined to make it work though (mostly because I was too lazy to attempt a downgrade – what, I did mention I was one of those people earlier, were you not paying attention?). There were a few times I grew frustrated (WHY Windows WHY), but now I’ve figured out (read: Googled) how to start it in desktop mode and basically ignore every new feature there is. What? I’m afraid of change okay.

Of course now I’ll have to show my grandma how to use my old one. It’s stripped of all of my data, so there’s nothing potentially embarrassing on there, but I quiver in fear of the day she decides to get facebook.

I got something else that’s new today: books! My Darkest Minds trilogy finally arrived and I’m expecting some more books tomorrow (my cousin and her boyfriend gave me an amazon gift card for Christmas, so obviously I had to cash that in right away). I haven’t started reading Never Fade yet, but so far I’ve been entirely content staring at the trilogy in its perfection. I kiiiind of resolved not to read Never Fade until my essay for uni is done, but… I haven’t even started researching it yet, so I probably won’t keep that resolve.

She needs to sort out her priorities


I know, Ron, I know. But first let me get back to marathoning old polandbanana videos on youtube.

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End of the Year Book Survey 2014

December 28, 2014 books, fun, miscellaneous, psa, recs 6



I love filling out surveys, so I figured this is as good a reason as any. If you want to do it yourself, you can follow the link to Jamie’s Blog or click on the picture above and link up your own post. And now, let’s see what I read this year!


Number Of Books You Read:

According to Goodreads, 39. I think it was a couple more, but 40 give or take should be correct.

Number of Re-Reads:

Four.

Genre You Read The Most From:

Fantasy/Urban Fantasy, but scifi and contemporary are strong contenders as well.
Read more »

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Book Review: The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken (Or the One With All the Friendship)

December 25, 2014 books, reviews 2

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken cover

When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control. Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.

This book, guys. Okay, let me attempt to bring my notes into a coherent review, so I can convince you to read it. The Darkest Minds is one of those books that stands out from the mass of dystopian YA books in a way so few manage to accomplish. It has great characters, an interesting story and beautiful writing.
Read more »

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Talk To Me: Followers and Give-Aways

December 17, 2014 books, discussion 8

Talk To Me

is a no-nonsense discussion feature on this blog. No-nonsense means I’m too lazy to make it look pretty. It’s exactly what the title suggests: I’m going to pose a question or tell you my own opinion about something, and I want to know what you think about it! Obviously feel free to write up your own post on the topic and link me up.


Topic

FOLLOW MEEE! Give-aways are almost ubiquitous in the (book) blogging scene. In a lot of give-aways, you have to follow the blogger on various social media sites to have decent chances of winning. Sometimes there’s a free entry, but if there are ten more possible entries, you’ll probably want to enhance your chance of winning that cool book you’ve been waiting for for ages. But do you stay subscribed or unsubscribe when the give-away is over? Are give-aways worth it in the long run – for bloggers and for subscribers?
Read more »

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Book Review: Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle (Or the One With Carla the Car)

December 16, 2014 books, reviews 2

Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle cover

An ill-timed storm on Christmas Eve buries the residents of Gracetown under multiple feet of snow and causes quite a bit of chaos. One brave soul ventures out into the storm from her stranded train and sets off a chain of events that will change quite a few lives. Over the next three days one girl takes a risky shortcut with an adorable stranger, three friends set out to win a race to the Waffle House (and the hash brown spoils), and the fate of a teacup pig falls into the hands of a lovesick barista.

A trio of today’s bestselling authors – John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle- brings all the magic of the holidays to life in three hilarious and charming interconnected tales of love, romance, and kisses that will steal your breath away.

If you want to get on your holiday cheer with an easy read, then this is the book to enjoy while curled up in front of the fireplace.

Read more »

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Book Review: Orla’s Code by Fiona Pearse (Or the One With the Anonymous Lover)

December 14, 2014 books, reviews 0

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld cover

“If you want to get ahead, get noticed,” is Orla Hanlon’s motto. New to London and the first female programmer at CouperDaye, a global investment bank, she takes on a high-profile but controversial project.
With her new luxury apartment and a work-romance quietly on the side, Orla thinks she has everything under control.
Until a bug in her code causes chaos on the trading floor and Orla finds herself a scapegoat in a corporate game, fighting to save her new life in London.

I bought this book mainly because of the programming aspect and because the blurb sounded intriguing. I’m not an expert on coding, so I can’t tell you whether the author got it right or not, which is why I’m only going to talk about the story itself.

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Book Review: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld (Or the One With the Hot Death God)

December 3, 2014 books, reviews 0

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld cover

Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she’s made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings… Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the ‘Afterworld’ to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved – and terrifying – stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.

I have the suspicion that this book is going to inspire a lot of people to write. Which is a good thing because yay, books!

Read more »

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Talk To Me: Romance Novel Heroes

November 24, 2014 books, discussion 4

Talk To Me

is a no-nonsense discussion feature on this blog. No-nonsense means I’m too lazy to make it look pretty. It’s exactly what the title suggests: I’m going to ask you a question or tell you my own opinion about something, and I want to know what you think about it!


Topic

As I previously mentioned I just had to give a presentation on the representation of the male romance novel hero at university, so I thought why not take it to the blog! My presentation was based on a chapter from the Smart Bitches‘ Guide to Romance (hilarious book, I highly recommend it) and an academic essay on male virgins in romance novels. Basically, I talked about the stereotypes of romance novel heroes and how they have changed over time. I’m pretty sure we’ve all read a book with a controlling, dominant alpha hero, who is naturally the most handsome guy around (or if he has competition, he just has that extra something that gives him an edge) and is competent at everything but stepping the macho behavior down a notch. So… good and entertaining or stupid and sexist?

My Opinion

Personally, I fall into the category that would say good and entertaining AND stupid and sexist. I can’t speak for everyone, but even though it doesn’t always work for me (there’s a fine line between I-had-a-tragic-childhood-and-that’s-why-I’m-a-jerk-but-I-will-change-for-you and I’m-just-a-jerk-and-all-my-excuses-are-stupid), I have read a lot of novels like this and liked them. I think the same concepts would probably apply to same-sex relationships if one is always portrayed as the more dominant and controlling one (although there is probably a different history of stereotypes and portrayal), but it would be interesting to think about how that might or might not change the dynamic.

If I recall correctly, one of the points the Smart Bitches’ Guide made (yes, I did choose the presentation topic because I saw that title on the reading list) was that one shouldn’t underestimate the reader – we’re aware it’s a fantasy and don’t necessarily want our partner to behave like that in real life, but sometimes the fantasy is nice. The book also talked about how the male role has changed over the years due to the fact that heroines are now often in control of their lives without needing the hero to save them, so the hero can be a more interesting character because he gets to do more than swoop down and save the damsel in distress.

So I guess I don’t always mind the macho behavior, as long as the heroine is not completely dependent on her love interest and can support herself and kick ass all on her own. To be more precise, I don’t mind it as long as it’s more showing off than really acting like an overbearing jerk. I do appreciate a more realistic portrayal of men (or, you know, people in general), and I think it would be much more interesting to read about more diverse and complex characters. To be honest though, I have a MUCH higher tolerance for jerk-y behavior in books than I do in real life. Would I approve of a friend’s relationship with a guy who killed several people, werewolf or not, in real life (yes, the werewolf hypothesis still holds up in this scenario)? Proooobably not, but it’s not like I’m going to throw my book across the room when the hero kills off all the bad guys either.

Your Turn!

So, what’s your take on romance heroes? Are you into controlling alpha males in books, or do they just plain annoy you?

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Book Review: Loop by Karen Akins (Or the One With Female Snape)

November 16, 2014 books, reviews 0

Loop cover by Karen Akins

At a school where Quantum Paradox 101 is a required course and history field trips are literal, sixteen year-old time traveler Bree Bennis excels… at screwing up.

After Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage (a teensy snafu), she stands to lose her scholarship. But when Bree sneaks back to talk the kid into keeping his yap shut, she doesn’t go back far enough. The boy, Finn, now three years older and hot as a solar flare, is convinced he’s in love with Bree, or rather, a future version of her that doesn’t think he’s a complete pain in the arse. To make matters worse, she inadvertently transports him back to the 23rd century with her.

Once home, Bree discovers that a recent rash of accidents at her school are anything but accidental. Someone is attacking time travelers. As Bree and her temporal tagalong uncover seemingly unconnected clues—a broken bracelet, a missing data file, the art heist of the millennium—that lead to the person responsible, she alone has the knowledge to piece the puzzle together. Knowledge only one other person has. Her future self.

But when those closest to her become the next victims, Bree realizes the attacker is willing to do anything to stop her. In the past, present, or future.

This review contains spoilers.

You had me at time travel academy! I found this book on Goodreads First Reads a few months ago. I didn’t win it (obviously), but I bought it anyway because the premise sounded fun. I had to struggle through some university books before I finally got around to this one, but it didn’t disappoint! Loop is an entertaining, fast-paced read that contains a lot of action and wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey stuff.

Read more »

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Update and Stacking the Shelves (5)

October 31, 2014 books, fun, miscellaneous 8

Hey there, it’s been a while! I hope I find you scared and laden with candy on this joyous day.



Okay, actually it’s just been a week or so, but my last few posts were scheduled, so I feel like I haven’t written one in ages. I can’t believe how busy I suddenly got! One week I was minding my own business, procrastinating and working every few days as usual and then BOOM university hit me over the head with a stupid amount of workload. Okay, to be fair some of it is voluntary, so maybe it wouldn’t be as much if I were only taking the seminars for my own program. But they’re so booooring and everything else is so SHINY. :D

So, what’s new?

This semester, I’m taking Hindi (because why not). I didn’t think I’d already have problems learning the alphabet. The frickin’ ALPHABET. But hey, failure is the road to success; I’m sure at some point I will actually be able to hear the difference between t and th and the other t with the little dot underneath (what the hell, Hindi). I can write my name in Hindi now though, so I feel disproportionally cool.

I’m also taking Digital Media Design because someone told me about it two weeks into the semester and it sounded good. I went for the first time last week and it’s EXACTLY what I want to learn. Our homework (of course people aren’t calling it that at university because it doesn’t sound cool enough, but that’s exactly what it is) this week is to design a button and write the HTML and CSS to go with it. How cool is that? Wow, I’m using the word cool a lot in this post. Anyways, I was able to sooort of keep up during the lecture because at least I’ve heard of HTML and I’ve taken a look at Photoshop before, but I expect this is going to get pretty hard pretty fast. I already asked my tutor a gazillion questions last time, but hey, what’s he there for, right?

I also quit my job. I only started in August, so that was kind of a douchy thing to do, but I’m sure they’re used to fast turnover as they only pay 5€ an hour and they already found someone new. The money sucks, but it’s not like it’s the hardest job ever. They have to pay minimum wage starting in January, which is why I considered staying. In the end, it really wasn’t worth neglecting university or my social life for a boring job with a bad salary though. Once the semester is over, I’ll probably start applying for jobs and internships again, but for now I’m happy with my decision.

Books!

I didn’t have a lot of time to read lately, but I finished one book for my seminar (Burnt Offerings by Laurell K Hamilton – it had EVERYTHING bad and cheesy that people who are prejudiced towards paranormal books would expect) and I’m reading two other books at the moment, which are thankfully better. I also got some new ones!



LOOP



I found this book on Goodreads First Reads. I didn’t win it, but I bought it anyway because TIME TRAVEL and… no, actually that’s it. It sounds like a light and fun read and I’m VERY tempted right now to throw my other books across the room and start this one already.

WASTED (A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia)



I’m reading this right now for a seminar called Writing Madness. I just received it yesterday, so I’m not too far in yet, but I think it’s very interesting, if a bit self-indulgent. I know that I read a book like it when I was much younger, but I read it in German and it was like ten years ago, so I have no idea if it was the same book or not.

GIRL, INTERRUPTED



This book I also bought for the Writing Madness seminar. I haven’t read it yet, but I remember watching the movie (or part of the movie) with Angelina Jolie when I was younger and liking it. I’m looking forward to reading it!

So, that’s it for the new books I got. I think I might as well link this post up with Stacking the Shelves since it’s tomorrow – everyone who is (shockingly) not interested in my personal life can just scroll by that part. :D

Tynga's Reviews Stacking the Shelves Post
Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews

Anything new with you guys? Tell me below! And if you’re feeling talkative anyway tell me your opinion about blogging and stress too. :)

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Loony Blurbs!

October 23, 2014 books, fun 3

It’s time for Loony Blurbs, where we write blurbs based solely on the titles of books! I missed the first few installments of this for time reasons, but I was determined to participate at least once because this is totally my kind of thing. Whacky? Creative? Both combined? Hell yeah.



Out of the ones I did, I’ve only read The Book Thief. I have no idea what the other books are actually about, but I think it’s even more fun this way. I didn’t look at the covers before I wrote the blurbs, so it’s all based on the title.

Read more »

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Talk To Me: Authors and Social Media

October 21, 2014 books, discussion 2

Talk To Me

is a no-nonsense feature on this blog. No-nonsense means I’m too lazy to make it look pretty. It’s exactly what the title suggests: I’m going to ask you a question or tell you my own opinion about something, and I want to know what you think about it!

Topic

AUTHOR ALERT! AUTHOR ALERT! …is what goes off in my head every time an author replies to me/favorites a tweet/comments on a post of mine. Theoretically, I knew social media give everyone a chance to connect better, but it was only when I got into this blogging thing that I really realized what that means. I’m not really someone who tends to be startstruck by anyone, but let’s be honest – it does kind of give you a kick when someone whose work you admire acknowledges your existence.

My Opinion

As with everything there are two sides to this. I think it’s amazing that writers, performers – basically anyone who has a fan or two or two million – can connect and interact with the people that love their work. This usually benefits both sides enormously. BUT, and you knew there was a but coming, it does make me think more about what I say and how I say it. That alone is not necessarily a bad thing, but there is such a thing as thinking TOO much about it. I think it’s important to remember that reviewers are criticizing the work and not the maker behind it (unless they’re jerks), but I generally believe in being respectful in my reviews. I do however make exceptions sometimes: If I really hated something, I might be tempted into a rant and, if they hit my kind of humor, I like reading bad reviews from time to time. Oops.

Naturally I don’t like everything I read or watch. Even when I really liked something there will probably be things that could have been improved. Let alone the times I DIDN’T like something. Does the fact that the person who created whatever I’m criticizing might see my review make me change the content of my post? No, I like to think it doesn’t, but sometimes I have to really force myself to leave things in. My blog is TINY in comparison with others and this has already happened a couple of times, so I can imagine this can get stressful for some people who accept review requests from authors who personally send them their books, especially if they know and like the author.

All of that doesn’t mean I don’t want authors (or whoever else) to see my posts or to connect on social media. Quite the opposite – 99.9 percent of the time it’s AMAZING. I do think this could be stressful the other 0.1 percent though, and I’m wondering how people who are under a lot more pressure due to a bigger audience or a personal relationship with the author handle this.

Your Turn!

What do you think? Is it part of the job description to deal with rants and disrespectful people when you’re a creator or should people be respectful at all times? Have you ever changed a review or a post because you didn’t want to hurt someone’s feelings? If you’re an author, how do you deal with bad reviews?

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Book Review: Dear Comrade + Childhood Favorites Feature(?)

October 15, 2014 books, psa, reviews 0

I didn’t actually finish this book just now, but I was reminded of it recently and after looking it up on Goodreads, I saw it didn’t even have a review there (now it does). Since this is one of my childhood favorites and it saddens me that not a lot of people seem to know it, I decided it deserves some space on my blog. I’m also toying with starting a Childhood Favorites feature of some sort on my blog so people have a chance to highlight those little almost-forgotten gems that impacted their childhood. If you’d be interested in showcasing a favorite book from you’re childhood/youth, definitely drop me an e-mail at reviewsandcake@gmail.com!

If there’s enough interest, it’ll definitely happen! If not, I’ll delete this part of the post and we’ll never talk about it again.

Okay, so now for the actual review:

Dear Comrade cover

After a party Kate and Paul start to write each other. The letters reveal their very different political convictions, but even so they can’t stop themselves from falling in love with each other.

(Goodreads keeping it short and snappy there.)

The main reason I like this (very short) book is that the two main characters manage to respect each other and establish a relationship despite the fact that they have vastly different world views. Even though their ideological perspectives couldn’t be more different, they don’t just SAY they’ll try to understand each other, they actually DO. Try, that is, not understand each other. There’s still a lot of fighting and casting stones (metaphorically) going on. Couple that with all the confusion and insecurity of first love and you have Dear Comrade.

That’s another thing I like about this book – Paul and Kate’s relationship is sweet without being annoying and develops naturally. Whereas the premise of the book can feel a little constructed at times, their relationship progresses organically as they begin to care more and more about each other. They often struggle to even stay friends, which of course makes it even harder once romantic feelings are involved. But when things get serious, they can rely on each other, which makes this story more romantic than a lot of things I’ve read recently. This book is basically the opposite of instant love. Plus, it’s an epistolary story, so what more can you wish for?

4 out of 5 cupcakes to this novella!

cupcakecupcakecupcakecupcake


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Book Review: Joss Whedon – The Biography (Or The One With Tom Hiddleston’s E-Mail)

October 13, 2014 books, reviews 0

Joss Whedon: The Biography by Amy Pascale cover

From the cult favorite Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which netted four million viewers per episode, to the summer blockbuster The Avengers, which amassed a box office of $1.5 billion, Joss Whedon has made a name for himself in Hollywood for his penchant for telling meaningful, personal tales about love, death, and redemption even against the most dramatic and larger-than-life backdrops. This biography follows his development from a creative child and teenager who spent years away from his family at an elite English public school, through his early successes—which often turned into frustrating heartbreak in both television (Roseanne) and film (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)—to his breakout turn as the creator, writer, and director of the Buffy television series. Extensive, original interviews with Whedon’s family, friends, collaborators, and stars—and with the man himself—offer candid, behind-the-scenes accounts of the making of groundbreaking series such as Buffy, Angel, Firefly, and Dollhouse, as well as new stories about his work with Pixar writers and animators during the creation of Toy Story. Most importantly, however, these conversations present an intimate and revealing portrait of a man whose creativity and storytelling ability have manifested themselves in comics, online media, television, and film.

Let me start this review by saying I HATE reading non-fiction books with a passion. I can’t remember a single instance where I managed to read a non-fictional book from start to finish unless it was also meant to entertain in some way or another. I even struggle with essays I have to read for university. Don’t get me wrong, they’re always interesting in some form or another, but where are the DRAGONS? Where’s the MAGIC and the CHARACTERS and the SUSPENSE? I actually love books that contain scientific elements, whether real or made-up, and I only vaguely remember the time frame of the French Revolution because of Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly. Wrap it up in a story of some sort and I can retain (fictional) virology and dates of important historical events like no one’s business, but serve it to me as actual facts and I’ll forget it in a min- what was that? I DON’T REMEMBER I WAS READING ABOUT A MAGICAL KINGDOM.

However, this biography is about Joss Whedon. The creator of fictional stories like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dollhouse, Firefly and to top it all off Avengers and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. All of those I love more than I would my firstborn child (don’t judge me, I hate children – you’re judging me even more now, aren’t you?), so when a friend walked into the room with this book, I just had to borrow it.

Read more »

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Frankfurt Book Fair 2014

October 10, 2014 books, fun, miscellaneous 2

I went to the Frankfurt book fair yesterday! It was a semi-spontaneous decision. As you may remember (or not if you’ve never been on my blog before, in which case: hey, there!), I took a weekend seminar on what an editor does two weeks ago. The editor who held it recommended to go the Frankfurt book fair to make connections and possibly talk about internships. We decided to go on a Thursday because the fair isn’t open to private visitors during the week and we thought we’d have more of a chance to talk to people. I even got in for free because I accidentally signed up for press accreditation and my blog qualified, which I thought was pretty damn awesome.

Book License Advertisement Penguin Group
book rights advertisement

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Book Review: Trial by Fire (or The One With a Lot of Aquiline Noses)

October 4, 2014 books, reviews 0

Trial by Fire cover by Josephine Angelini

This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan. But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian . . . Lily’s other self in this alternate universe.

What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.

It’s been a while since I’ve read a YA fantasy book that entertained me this much. Let’s talk about the good things first.

This review contains spoilers. Please only read on if you don’t mind or have already read the book.
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Stacking the Shelves #3

October 3, 2014 books 9

Wow, that week went by fast. I didn’t buy any new books, but I borrowed two from friends.



Joss Whedon: The Biography by Amy Pascale
Or, alternatively, Joss Whedon: Geek King of the Universe. Which is totally not over the top. At all. I’m about 80 pages in and I’m basically just waiting to get to the Avengers part. Apparently there’s an e-mail by Tom Hiddleston. Not that I’d care about that.

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
I already have Cat’s Cradle on my to-read list, but I happened upon this first. Apparently John Green mentioned it’s one of his all-time favorite books or something and that’s why my friend bought it. DFTBA, yo. It also says on the back it’s “one of the worlds great antiwar books”, so that sounds promising.

What’s New?

Um… my downstairs neighbours brought me delicious pizza tonight because they had too much. Can you say great neighbours? In slightly more interesting news: I’m going to the Frankfurt book fair next week, so prepare for a post on that soon!

On the Blog

I finally posted my review of Throne of Glass. Spoiler alert: I didn’t like it.

What have you been up to this past week?

Tynga's Reviews Stacking the Shelves Post
Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews

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Book Review: Throne of Glass (or The One With All The Balls, No Not Those)

October 3, 2014 books, reviews 0

Throne of Glass Cover by Sarah J Maas

In a land without magic, where the king rules with an iron hand, an assassin is summoned to the castle. She comes not to kill the king, but to win her freedom. If she defeats twenty-three killers, thieves, and warriors in a competition, she is released from prison to serve as the king’s champion. Her name is Celaena Sardothien.

The Crown Prince will provoke her. The Captain of the Guard will protect her. But something evil dwells in the castle of glass–and it’s there to kill. When her competitors start dying one by one, Celaena’s fight for freedom becomes a fight for survival, and a desperate quest to root out the evil before it destroys her world.

Initial Impression

I was fully prepared to like this book. Guess it goes to show that you should never trust the hype.

The word that best describes my feelings when reading the first couple of sentences of this book is relief. The author’s writing style didn’t suck, so how bad could it be, right? Wrong. I feel like the gifs in this review express my feelings perfectly, but I’m going to attempt to review it anyway.

Thoughts While Reading

BEWARE, THERE WILL BE SPOILERS

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Stacking the Shelves: University Edition

September 27, 2014 books 5

I was planning to do my STS post next week because my internet at home doesn’t work, but I’ve been at the university library for an hour without writing a single word for my term paper, so I figured I might as well do something a little more fun!

Tynga's Reviews Stacking the Shelves Post
Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews

I was totally going to wait before buying more books, but I HAD to buy these for university. :D Usually we don’t read bad romance novels at uni, but this is a seminar called Investigating Intimate Relationships (yes, I totally expect this to get awkward haha) and the lecturer either has really bad taste in books or plans to look at them very critically. Here’s what I got.

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Talk To Me: Are Translations Important?

September 19, 2014 books, discussion 3

This post is inspired by a BBC article on why English speakers won’t read books in translation.

Talk to Me

is a new no-nonsense feature on this blog. No-nonsense means I’m too lazy to make it look pretty. It’s exactly what the title suggests: I’m going to ask you a question or tell you my own opinion about something, and I want to know what you think about it!

Topic

When I was younger, I never really cared whether a book was a translation – unless I had to wait for the next book in a series because it had to be translated before I could read it. Other than that, the main criterion that decided whether I would read a book was, of course, always the story. To be honest, I never even thought about the subject that much until I read the above linked article. The author of it wonders why literatures from other languages make up so little of the English-language publishers’ output and it got me thinking. I almost exclusively read books written in English these days, and I read them in the original because I can, because I like it and because I don’t trust the translation. Before I was able to do this, however, I was already an avid reader. When I think back to my childhood, I’m pretty sure that the majority of the books I read were translations from English, so I never really thought about the fact that this could be different in other countries.

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