Tag Archives: Reading

The Princess Diarist

WARNING: There are some spoilers ahead. Short non-spoiler version: It was good… you should read it 🙂 Yay Carrie Fisher!

Image result for the princess diarist

Ahh The Princess Diarist… When I found out this was coming out I made sure the library was getting a copy. With the release of the Star Wars VII there was a lot of renewed interest from our patrons in Carrie Fisher’s books. As well as pretty much anything that could in some way maybe be slightly related to anything Star Wars 🙂

When we got it in there was definitely interest and I wanted to read it myself so I put on a reserve and waited patiently. Unfortunately no librarian perks when it comes to the reserves queue hahaha.

When I borrowed the book I got a few chapters in that night and the next day Carrie Fisher passed away. Some of what she wrote in the book talked about her eventual passing and it was just too weird and sad to continue reading it at that time so I returned it and let the other masses waiting for it go first.

So a couple of months down the track now the hordes have cleared I decided to give it another go. I really enjoyed this book. Bios are not generally something I steer towards, but I have found that when they are well written and interesting I do enjoy them.

It was quite interesting to see the differences between the writing styles of “present” day Carrie and the pages of 19 year old Carrie’s journals. It was very apparent from 19yo Carrie’s writing that she was very much infatuated by Harrison, though present day Carrie is reasonably discrete about the affair itself 19yo Carrie seemingly (to me) struggled under the banner of secrecy. If you are looking for some ground shattering literary genius out of those diaries you are not going to get it. They are what you would expect of a creative, somewhat angsty 19yo who’s smoking joints and head over heels. Kind of felt as though perhaps she had gotten hold of some of my old journals except I had more of a penchant for songs than poems.

I really enjoyed the behind the scenes parts of the memoir and I liked how she simultaneously loves and hates cons. She has a special tongue in cheek love for her fans as well.

Her writing style is quite quirky and you can almost imagine her saying the words as you read along. Actually the audio book would probably be great!

She does make a few references to her inevitable passing as well as that of her mother which made reading the book quite touching, but beautiful at the same time. One of the most poignant parts of the book for me was in the acknowledgements when she thanks her mother for “being too stubborn and thoughtful to die, “I love you, but that whole emergency, almost dying thing, wasn’t funny. Don’t even THINK about doing it again in any form.” Given that her mother died just one day after Carrie what was probably meant to be a wry joke took on a much more tender meaning.

If you are a fan of Carrie Fisher you will enjoy this book. If you are looking for some scandalous tell all on “Carrison” then this is probably not for you 🙂 But you will likely find some amazingly graphic fan fiction online hahaha. Whatever floats your boat, no judgement.

 

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The Beauty of Darkness

The Beauty of Darkness is book 3 in The Remnant Chronicles saga and is my book number 2 for 52 books in 52 weeks.I talked about the second book in a recent post and was looking forward to reading the final installment. I will be as vague as possible, but some might consider what I will write slight spoilers 🙂

This was a thick book at 679 pages, so if you are someone who cannot commit to long books you might struggle, but I don’t mind them personally and I felt it was worth the read. When the story is good I don’t generally notice how long it is. Plus I was already two books in, I wasn’t about to stop now 🙂

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Love the cover art for this series!!!

There was this really interesting message through this whole story that I felt repeated over and over again through different storylines and that was that ‘no one is too great to fall’. This is SUCH a true message in day to day life for every person as well as in this book and I think that is why I appreciated it. It also shows how those that fall respond, do they become desperate and cruel or evil, or do they have an inner strength and sense of self that sustains them through the harshest of times. Let’s not mince words, these characters went through some hellish ordeals, particularly the female protagonist Lia. From a waited on princess to someone’s prisoner covered in filth and blood wearing a hessian sack, Lia’s resolve never faulted and her inner strength and leadership qualities just grew. Everything was taken from her and she didn’t crumble. This is a great book for young women to read for this message alone.

The other thing I liked about Lia and some of the other main characters is that they often didn’t make the popular choice. They were not afraid to make the difficult choice that would be immensely harder and possibly end in death because ultimately it was the right thing to do and could save many lives. Too often you read books where people throw the lives of thousands out to dry in the name of love and whilst I understand that being an impossible choice I do get frustrated by the sheer amount of these type of novels – like the Fallen series for example (not that I didn’t enjoy it – you can tell here and here).

Relationships were so interesting in this book. To be honest it didn’t end the way I wished it had. The ending I wanted wouldn’t be the popular version, but to me it was more realistic and I cannot say much more about how I felt about this without spoiling things so I will stop here.

I was a fan of the overall ending and was definitely a fan of many of the messages in the book. I was a particular fan of the women in this book. There is a strength to the women in this book that you cannot help but admire. Seriously SUCH a great read for young women today.


52 Books in 52 weeks – November

Yay, before 2015. I knew I could do it 🙂 I have to warn you there are a couple of spoilers today, I swear not many, but just consider yourself duly warned okay?!

Here is the list 🙂

Number Title Author
47 – Oct 27 – Nov 2 Shadowfever Moning, Karen Marie
48 –

Nov 3-9

Iced Moning, Karen Marie
49 –

Nov 10-16

 Famous last words  Sanders, Annie

November was great, as you can see I finished the Mackayla Lane series and actually started the Dani series with “Iced”. I am so close to my goal now, but honestly I have fallen behind with everything going on at the moment, but that my lovelies is a story for a different post 🙂

shadowfever

Shadowfever – Karen Marie Moning

I need to be honest here, in my last review I was talking about struggling with these books and the first one I absolutely struggled. In fact I think it took me awhile to read because I was just not interested at all. Book 2 I was a little bit more interested, towards the end of book 2 I was all in and seriously you guys I tore through the rest of the series over 1 weekend! One weekend! I mean I didn’t really see my Hubby much, but I went into total book lockdown. I try very, very hard not to put spoilers in my reviews because I want you guys to make the decision to read the book on your own and I don’t want to ruin any of the experience for you 🙂 For this reason it is inherently difficult to discuss this last instalment properly because even by discussing the characters that are in the last book I could be providing spoilers. It does make it difficult because I really want to talk about it with you. Let me just say that I had kind of guessed one or two of the big reveals, not because it was obvious, more because I think my story weaving mind works similarly to the authors. There were points where I went, ‘if I was writing this I would totally twist it like this at the end’ and it just so happened that two of the twists I thought of happened. Trust me you guys there is at least two awesomely big twists at the end of this series that you will probably not see coming 🙂 Naturally at the end of the series I had that hangover you get when the story ends and you have to leave that awesome world you had immersed yourself in. To me that is how you tell if you really enjoyed a book or not. The whole series is worth reading for this final instalment.

Iced

Iced – Karen Marie Moning

Luckily as it turns out I do not have to give up the world completely. It seems the story continues, not from Macs point of view, but from Dani’s. Crap, SPOILERS for Shadowfever you guys!!! SPOILERS!

I have just realised that again I cannot really discuss anything from this book without giving away seriously big plot points from Shadowfever. Hmm… okay I have given away one… Dani survives. There that is done LOL.

I really enjoyed her character development. I really like the character of Dani, I like the bad guy, like the plot development and really like the Big Boss scenes. But… sorry people there is a huge but coming… I have an issue with the fact that again there is a massive sexual undertone to the whole book. This protagonist is 14 and you have males (can’t mention names due to spoilers) that are following her around having seriously kinky thoughts about her. The best way of handling it is to forget that she is fourteen, which works until the males in question start talking about the fact that their thoughts are wrong because she is only 14. This book leaves you on a serious cliff-hanger, particularly in regards to the fate of a number of the main characters. I can’t wait for the next instalment in 2015!!

Famous last words

Famous last words – Annie Sanders

This was a random book I picked up at the Library. I am not even sure what made me choose it to be honest. This was an interesting story, I certainly enjoyed seeing the character Lucy rediscover and embrace life. Some of the things she got up to I wish I had the courage to do, but aren’t we all afraid of doing anything and everything we want to do? Afraid of looking foolish or being ridiculed? I liked those aspects of the story, some even made me giggle. A few times I thought I had guessed the ending, to be honest it ended up more obvious than I had expected and I found that interesting. Rather than try to pack a punch with a big message they went with the slightly more realistic message, the weird part being that a realistic message appeared in the most unrealistic part of the story. To be honest I am still trying to sort out my feelings about this one 🙂

Just so you have a running score I thought I would let you know that the end of this post signifies 49/52 books

I swear December shall come… hopefully before the beginning of 2015, but I can’t promise 😛


52 Books in 52 weeks – June

Some different books this month including one I was quite surprised to like.

Here is the list 🙂

Number Title Author
23 –

Jun 2-8

False Impressions

Stamping Sisters mystery #3

Thayer, Terri
24 –

Jun 9-15

City of Dark Magic Flyte, Magnus
25 –

Jun 16-22

City of Lost Dreams Flyte, Magnus
26 –

Jun 23-29

Darkfever Moning, Karen Marie

 

Continuing on my path of aiming to read books I wouldn’t normally I went to the Library and grabbed a couple of books by authors I had never read – I will neither confirm or deny that part of my choice was based on alluring covers 🙂

False impressions

False Impressions: Stamping Sisters mystery #3 – Terri Thayer

This was an oops, I didn’t realise it was number three until I got it home… damn fine print 🙂 Luckily this series is one of those that does not have to be read sequentially so we got along fine. I found the characters interesting and the story overall was quite good. I liked that the book was different from your typical mystery and there were character/economic points that I felt really fit with real life situations, for example the main character April has to live in her fathers restored barn with his partners parents because she does historical stamping for restoration projects for a living and there is not much call for that so she has no money – so there are those kind of side stories that make the characters more “real” and relatable which is great. I am definitely considering going back to read the other two – although I am hoping the villain is better hidden because I figured out who it was really quickly and everything after that just confirmed my thoughts until the big reveal and I was kind of sitting there going, ‘oh come one April, you are not this stupid!’

 

 

city of dark magic

City of Dark Magic – Magnus Flyte

This book held surprise for me, here I was thinking I was getting a paranormal suspense novel with a female protagonist (Sarah Weston) who is a music student working a summer at Prague Castle Cataloguing Beethoven’s manuscripts (hello! I am a Librarian and a muso – like that wasn’t going to catch my attention haha). What I wasn’t expecting was a sexual element – which at first was really strange and to be honest whilst I now understand why she had a high libido I am not entirely sure it needed to be talked about so much, but I suppose danger, magic and sex kind of go hand in hand. Once the sexual element came in I really wasn’t expecting to like the book, I admit… I judged. I figured it was going to be literary porn masked as a serious novel, but I was pleasantly surprised and indeed rather swept away with the twists and turns in the book. It hooked me and I really, really enjoyed it – it certainly was not porn and as you got into the story you came to understand what that first shock had been about. There is a book two and I am hot on the trail to finding it 🙂

 

 

CITY-OF-LOST-DREAMS-COVER

City of Lost Dreams – Magnus Flyte

I found book two! 🙂 Hooray! I do hate when you start reading a series and have to wait forever for the next book *cough cough* George R. R. Martin *cough*. Slight spoilers, but not really.

This book did have a different feel from the first one, the story was split between Prague and Venice so whilst the main protagonist was still Sarah you spent more time than in the previous book seeing the story unfold from others points of view. I really enjoyed these books for their uniqueness, it was a really different concept that not only challenged the way you looked at the world, but also in the end looked at how people choose to spend their lives. Two different immortals; one who spent their life trying to achieve and brought science and medicine forward in leaps and bounds and one who spent their time frivolously searching for a way to end it all – don’t worry they are not Vampires 🙂 Just humans.

 

 

darkfever

Darkfever  – Karen Marie Moning – SOME SPOILERS

This one I just grabbed from Overdrive because I had nothing to read and it sounded interesting and had a pretty cover. Turns out I was right with my earlier assumption… danger and magic mean that at some point or other in a book you’re going to end up with sex… why is that? Whilst the whole book was not a sexual tone the couple of times it was it was kind of a shock.

I found the story okay, you have no clue who is bad and who isn’t for the entire book. The female protagonist kind of grows on you, but she spends a lot of the book insisting she is not a bimbo, but whining about her looks and nail polish… I get the impression that the fact is at the beginning she WAS a shallow bimbo, but she is supposed to be slowly changing into someone of depth due to what is happening around her. I have no clue what is going on with the character of Barrons, if I was living in that place I would be spending my days (when he is not around) going through his house from top to bottom searching for ways to protect myself from him – he seems like a psycho and throws Mac around – it’s very strange!!!

One thing that really annoyed me was that I didn’t feel like the ending was an ending, I thought it was the end of the chapter, turned the page and there was the glossary… umm wtf? I google the title… dammit it is a series and nowhere has the second book, this annoyed me because the book had no kind of conclusion, seriously… the narration is done from some point in the future as though she is telling the story of how she got there… naturally I figured the end of the book would at least get me to the point the narrator was up to, but no… nothing. It was really weird, but it also drew you in so I kind of want to read the others, although admittedly that could be my love of closure 🙂 Don’t even get me started on how Mac magically transformed into Buffy TVS after one lesson on where to stick the pointy end… just… don’t.

supernatural-books

And so we go into July… so many books… so little time. What are you reading at the moment? I am open to suggestions 🙂


52 Books in 52 weeks – May

I do apologise in advance as I have to admit my last two books this month were shorter than what I would normally read, but to be fair I didn’t realise how short they were until I started reading the series.

Here is the list 🙂

Number Title Author
18 – Apr 27 – May 4 Sometimes a Rogue Putney, Mary Jo
19 –

May 5-11

The Maze Runner Dashner, James
20 –

May 12-18

Married with Zombies Petersen, Jesse
21 –

May 19-25

Resurrected Rice, Morgan
22 – May 26 – Jun 1 Craved Rice, Morgan

 

Part of the reason I designed and set this task for myself this year was to force me to read books that I wouldn’t normally read as well as books I keep meaning to read, but somehow never get around to reading. Most of the books I read this month fall into one of these categories.

Sometimes a Rogue – Mary Jo Putney

Sometimes a Rogue

I’m not going to lie; it took me a while to try a “Romance” novel. Why? Because whenever I have read them in the past it was the same story every time, just in different settings with different names; damsel has bad thing happen to her such as getting kidnapped, often the leading man is the kidnapper, but he is misunderstood, he falls for the captive she gets what I always amounted to be Stockholm syndrome AKA falls in love with him too and somehow everything works out after they almost break up a few times. Oh and sometimes for a plot twist she falls pregnant, but doesn’t tell him for some reason. So as you can imagine I went into this with very low expectations and was pleasantly surprised… apparently romance novels sometimes have a damsel who has a spine? The female character Sarah did get kidnapped, but she fought her kidnappers, dressed as a boy to elude them once she had escaped, slept in barns, survived a huge storm at sea during which the boat split into a million pieces, saved the male protagonist and protected his land by shooting invaders. Like I said, pleasantly surprised.

 

The Maze Runner – James Dashner

maze runner

Finally I got to this book, it has been on my “To Read” list for ages! This novel came out in 2009 and can I just say that it certainly stood up to (and in many cases far exceeded) the quality of YA fiction coming out at that time. I really enjoyed it and will likely see the movie when it comes out later this year, mainly because I am interested to see the Grievers brought to life 🙂 I have already put a hold on the prequel and sequel at the Library, there are a couple of holds on them though so I may be in for a wait 😦

 

 

 

 

Married with Zombies – Jesse Petersen

Print

If you are looking for a gruesome hard-hitting Zombie novel this is not the book for you. I enjoyed this book, I actually laughed out loud a few times and really liked the chapter titles as you went along which combined surviving the Zombie apocalypse with lessons from their marriage counsellor. I liked the offbeat humour in this novel and particularly enjoyed where they sat down and had a conversation about all the movies they had seen to try and put together a list of how to possibly kill Zombies. I also had to laugh when they were filling up on gas and the husband started stealing all the cigarettes because he thought they could be used to trade for goods later on. It was also nice to have a bit of realism in that the power, water and internet didn’t automatically stop because there were Zombies. Worth a read… I am trying to track down the sequel.

 

Resurrected & Craved – Morgan Rice

resurrected

craved

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These books are the first two in a YA series by Morgan Rice, they were ok for a Vampire Novel and would likely be snapped up by the target audience, but for someone that grew up on
Anne Rice (quite literally I was reading her novels in my early teens) I was a bit underwhelmed. The characters were pretty well developed for a YA novel and Morgan definitely has the teen-speak down – meaning I have like never seen so many “likes” in one page in like any book in like ever… like.

And so we go into June… so many books… so little time.