Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Yellow Birds
By Kevin Powers

4.5 out of 5

The story of two young men who forge a friendship while serving their nation in Iraq. This is a story of Private Murphy, and Private Bartle as they struggled to keep the good guys alive, kill the bad guys, and make sense of the world that they currently called home.

This book was incredibly well written for someone who is not an author. The story tells a (mostly) true story of two young men who are in the Iraq war. The story itself is incredible, and the way the story is told, skipping around through the years, actually helps the reader to understand how Private Bartle thinks and remembers his experiences. I did tear up at a few points, but never full on sobbing. It is a story about war, there are some things that you should expect. I had to read this for school, but I thought that it was really good, and I would definitely recommend it to others!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Days of Blood and Starlight (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #2)
By Laini Taylor

5 out of 5

With the start of the first book, Karou and Akiva have both disappeared into the world of angles and chimera. But they are not together, far from it. Karou has realigned herself with the White Wolf, and is beginning the impossible task of earning her people's forgiveness, and resurrecting the chimera. And Akiva? Akiva is mourning his loss of Karou (again) while he follows his orders from his position in the seraphim army. But things are never as simple as they should be. Both sides are using guerilla warfare, attacking innocent civillians, and there will be no mercy for anyone. Unless, there is a change. From both sides. But will Akiva and Karou be able to convince anyone this is possible, when they barely believe it themselves? Or has the actions of both sides just been too much for any sort of peace, between breeds, and lovers?

This was both difficult and very easy to read. Difficult because the things that happened, are not what I wanted to happen. But easy, because it was just so good. This was the type of book that I would think about during the day, while driving home, while watching the World Cup on TV. It was a book that I wanted, needed to read. Straight from the beginning, it hooked me, maybe even more than the first book did. Karou and Akiva are such deep characters with so much history and development that I felt what they were feeling. I cringed for them, I yearned for them, and of course, I hoped for them, and I still do. I can't wait to read the third (and final?) book in the series and see what happens next!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Eleanor & Park
By Rainbow Rowell

2 out of 5

Eleanor is a troubled, slightly chubby, fiery redheaded girl who makes the mistake of not knowing where to sit on the bus. Park is a half Asian, bit of an outsider, indie music boy who makes the mistake of letting her sit in his seat with him. This is how it begins. Slowly, over time, Eleanor and Park become acquaintances, and then friends, the boyfriend/girlfriend, and then much more. But their lives are far from easy. Bullies and hatred meet them at every turn, even at home, and Eleanor's home life is a constant worry and struggle in her life. But they say true love conquers all right? Can Eleanor and Park's love do just that?

I am sorry to say that this book kind of disappointed me. Having just finished Fangirl, and completely loving it, I had high expectations for this book, and it, just did not live up. I felt that the characters were too rigid in their major character flaws. Eleanor was too closed up and defensive, even after admitting that she loved Park, she still snapped at him, and didn't let him know what was really going on. And Park, Park was too himself. Too easily angered, and driven to rage. To needing to be different from everyone else. To obsessively in love with Eleanor. That goes for both of them. Obsessively in love. This may be classic teen love, or it could be the epic love story of Eleanor and Park's time, but really, they were obsessed. Maybe this is just a never-been-in-love cynic talking, but I didn't like how completely dependent they were on each other, and how there was no just Eleanor, no just Park. There was only Eleanor and Park. If you saw a relationship like this in real life, it would not be okay. It would be deemed unhealthy. I understand what Rainbow Rowell was trying to convey with their story and the way people connect through different medias and crossing all sorts of boundaries to be together, but I really didn't think that this book was as good as everybody has been saying.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

By Rainbow Rowell

4 out of 5

Cath is about to start her freshman year of college. But everything is not as it should be. Her twin sister, Wren, isn't her roommate, Cath doesn't know where the dining hall is, and Cath can't write Carry On Simon, her massively popular fanfiction story, with her new roommate Reagan in the room. Things look tough, and they are bound to get worse before they get better. Cath is very introverted, but will people like Levi, Reagan, Nick, and Wren be able to break in and become friends with Cath? Or will they all be shut out in the cold?

This book was surprisingly good. I will admit, that I picked up the book due to name only. Fangirl. I was intrigued. This book was really good, but hit too close to home in some cases. Having just completed my freshman year of college, reading about Cath's adventures of her freshman year made me sad and nostalgic. And angry. Cath can be so introverted at times that it frustrates me. She would rather give up than be challenged in life, and that mindset upsets me. However, alls well that ends well. This book had me giddy and grinning from ear to ear (probably a lot like Cath and Levi), and other times cringing in mutual awkwardness. Speaking of Levi, the parallels I could draw between Levi and Augustus Waters from The Fault in Our Stars are incredible. Don't get me wrong, I love Levi as his own person, but I look at him very fondly as Augustus' very close cousin, I even picture them looking very similar!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Godfather
By Mario Puzo

4.5 our of 5

It has been so long since I have posted a review, but I'm back and ready to get reading!

This book is a classic, so I'm not sure how much description is needed, but here goes. The Godfather is the story of the Corleone family, one of the major mob families in New York City. Through out the book, the family deals with highs, lows, deception, betrayals, deaths, loves, and everything else in between.

This  semester has literally been the semester where it took me forever to read anything. But I have finally finished the Godfather, and I must admit, it was worth it. I, of course, have seen the movie and knew the story, but the book is always better, and I had heard that this is a great book, so when I left the country for four months, I took the book with me.

The characters were vivacious and gripping, the twists and turns in the story engaging and thrilling, while sometimes also being unexpected and frustrating. In a book there is so much more time to explore characters and story lines so the reader gets a much more in depth picture of the Corleones and their lives.

This is a book that everyone should read. It is a classic, that will never go out of style, and is a great story, for wherever you are in your life.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Measure for Measure
By William Shakespeare

3 out of 5

A tragi-comedy full of scandal, one of Shakespeare's lesser known plays will have you sweating like a whore in church, literally. The story is one of endless scandal and double standards. The story starts with the Duke leaving on a "journey". In his place he puts Angelo, who is strict to a fault, but also untested. The crime? Sex out of wedlock, and everyone in the play in involved! Lots of disguises, tongue in cheek, and play on words, if you like Shakespeare, this is a good one!
United We Spy (Gallagher Girls #6)
By Ally Carter

5 out of 5

Senior year. Graduation in imminent, but for Cammie and her friends, it might be the last thing on their minds. The only thing on Cammie's mind is the Circle and their plan. As they track down member after member, people are dying and no questions are being answered. Then things get dangerous. Preston and his dad are taken into coustedy, and the only person they will talk to is Cammie. But then when the Senator gets killed right in front of Cammie's eyes things get dangerous. Not to mention World War 3 is about to start unless the girls, and Zach, can save the world one last time.

Endings are always bitter sweet, and this one was no exception. I never wanted it to end, but at the same time, I couldn't stop myself from reading it! Ally Carter stayed true to herself and her story, and it was just as good as I expected. Now the story, was one that I didn't. World War 3, secret hideouts, raging fires, there was no way I could have predicted all of that. The only thing, and I mean only, is that in my opinion, there was not enough Zach. I am a sucker for a good romance, and Zach and Cammie just didn't have enough chances to be cute while they were saving the world.