Mags' book blog

 I like geeky things, horses and reading. One of these days I swear I'll get through my 'to read' list...

Oryx and Crake - Margaret Atwood This book is horrifying. No, I'm not saying it's bad. The writting couldn't be better. The world building? Amazing. The characters? The words 'real', 'complex' and 'vivid' come to mind. And the plot? Engaging. I stayed up until 3am last night reading; I just couldn't put it down. No, the book being horrifying has nothing to do with its quality. The horror comes from the creeping realization you get as you read and realize that the future described here could easily be our own. The corps, splicing, compounds, pleebland, even the pigoons; all these elements are great because you can easily imagine them being real. “He doesn't know which is worse, a past he can't regain or a present that will destroy him if he looks at it too clearly. Then there's the future. Sheer vertigo.”Jimmy and Snowman. They're the same person. Mostly. Snowman lives in the present where the world's already ended. The book follows him as he makes a journey looking for extra supplies. When he reminisces and the focus shifts to the past he's Jimmy. Crake was his best friend, Oryx his love. This is about as boring and generic as you can get with a book description and yet it's as discriptive as I want to get. The way Atwood reveals her story is straight up masterful. Each time she peels back a layer the story becomes richer and more vibrant. And just when you're ready to fling yourself off a roof from how depressed you are she hands you a nugget of hope.Now for the downsides. If you're looking for a fast paced book this is not it. There's no fight scenes or villians to destroy or what have you. None of this stopped me from loving it. This is the quote that both made the book and scared the daylights out of me. And in many ways is the best summary of the book I could come up with."Let's suppose for the sake of the argument," said Crake one evening, "that civilization as we know it gets destroyed. Want some popcorn?""Is that real butter?" said Jimmy."Nothing but the best at Watson-Crick" said Crake. "Once it's flattened, it could never be rebuilt.""Because why? Got any salt?""Because all the available surfact metals have already been mined," said Crake."Without which, no iron age, no bronze age, no age of steel, and all the rest of it. There's metals farther down, but the advanced technology we need for extracting those would have been obliterated.""It could be put back together," said Jimmy, chewing. It was so long since he'd tasted popcorn this good. "They'd still have the instructions.""Actually not," said Crake. "It's not the like wheel, it's too complex now. Suppose the instructions survived, suppose there were any people left with the knowledge to read them. Those people would be few and far between, and they wouldn't have the tools. Remember, no electricity. Then once those people died, that would be it. They'd have no apprentices, they'd have no successors. Want a beer?"Is it cold?""All it takes," said Crake, "is the elimination of one generation. One generation of anything. Beetles, trees, microbes, scientists, speakers of French, whatever. Break the link in time between one generation and the next, and it's game over forever.""Speaking of games," said Jimmy, "it's your move."
Towering - Alex Flinn Interesting take on Rapunzel. I liked the way the author included the traditional parts of the Rapunzel fable, just tweaked to fit in a modern day setting. The book has a darker atmosphere to it which I'm always a fan of.On the negative side there's the love at first sight/dream thing. I know it's what happens in the fairy tale, but still. It seems like everything in YA these days is going "Our eyes have locked, we are soul mates. I shall love you forever, let us make out with tongue." Bleh.That, combined with the numerous plot holes/inconsistencies (Who the heck is making prophecies/curses around here anyways? Why did Zach just peace out? etc) is what dragged the book down for me. Overall this around 2.5 stars for me. Rounded up for the Star Trek references And let's be honest here, who didn't think of Tangled with the whole healing-powered tear thing?
The Assassin and the Princess - Sarah J. Maas I swear I will write a proper review of this once my fever's gone and my brain doesn't feel like it's going to fall out
Patty Gayle and the Legend of Kingsley - Cynthia P. Willow First off, I'll admit that I was surprised at how into this book I got. Patty Gayle and the Legend of Kingsley is a light fantasy novel that's targeted for kids, and yet here I am in my 20's getting absorbed by it lol! If you're looking for a book that's suitable for a kid this is a great book to pick. I found it very easy to read and understand. Kingsley was a fun place to visit and I look forward to reading the second book.The reason this is four stars instead of five is that I felt it took a bit too long to get to Kingsley, and there was a bit where the villain was dispatched that I didn't like. But neither of these keep the book from being worth reading. -I received a free copy in return for an honest review
Patty Gayle and the Legend of Kingsley - Cynthia P. Willow First off, I'll admit that I was surprised at how into this book I got. Patty Gayle and the Legend of Kingsley is a light fantasy novel that's targeted for kids, and yet here I am in my 20's getting absorbed by it lol! If you're looking for a book that's suitable for a kid this is a great book to pick. I found it very easy to read and understand. Kingsley was a fun place to visit and I look forward to reading the second book.The reason this is four stars instead of five is that I felt it took a bit too long to get to Kingsley, and there was a bit where the villain was dispatched that I didn't like. But neither of these keep the book from being worth reading. -I received a free copy in return for an honest review
At the End of Our Journey - Jack R. East Jr. This is a great book. It's short and very easy to read, only about 80 pages long. I finished it in a couple of hours. Don't be fooled by it's length though. The message in it is profound and moving; and everything from the scripture references to the tools listed are helpful and uplifting. All around this is a great book!I received a free copy from Goodreads
Magic Rises - Ilona Andrews I'm still dead over this book
The Other Typist - Suzanne Rindell This book. Oh my gosh. I here are the simple truths of this book.1. Amazingly well written. Sucked me in within the first few pages2. I could hardly put it down until I finished it.3. The last chapter justI stomped around my apartment ranting and waving my arms around4. I will absolutely read anything else this author writes.-I received a free copy of this book from Goodreads
Tell the Wolves I'm Home: A Novel - Carol Rifka Brunt Beautiful story. I cannot stop crying.
The Almond Tree - Michelle Cohen Corasanti This book. My gosh, this book. I'll write a review after I've had some time to process it.
Prodigal - Rektok Ross This is a really good, really solid book. I loved so much of it! Loved Lexy, loved most of the story, loved how fleshed out the characters were, loved how it showed Lexy's burgeoning faith. I even loved the parts that broke my heart and made me cry! I really, really debated about whether or not to make this a 4 or 5 star review; if I could have put it as 4.5 I would have. The main thing that put me off was Ash. Did I like him? Yes. Did I understand and sympathize with him? Yes. BUT, did I love him and Lexy as a couple? Ehhhh...kinda? In the beginning I found myself rooting more for Brian then Ash as romantic interest. Overall though this is a really great read. I think I got very, very lucky in winning this on goodreads. I look forward to reading more books from this author!
21 Stories of Faith: Real People, Real Stories, Real Faith - Shelley Hitz,  C.J. Hitz,  Janet Perez Eckles,  Jorja Davis,  Kim Bookmyer,  Mark Moyers,  Lilly Maytree,  Carol Freed,  Laura J. Marshall,  Cheryl Rogers,  Victor Brodt,  Mikayla Kayne,  Paul B. Heidt,  Marilynn Dawson,  Mary L. Ball,  Nishoni Harvey,  Ruth Kyser,  Kryst Wow, what a great book! It really sucked me in. The stories are short and sweet, making the book easy to read. In the first day I got about a third of the way through before forcing myself to put the book down and go to bed. I found myself highlighting passages in almost every story because there were parts I wanted to remember and/or found very meaningful in regards to Faith. This book helped me re-examine and strengthen my own faith, and I think it takes a very special book to do that. 5 stars!I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review
21 Stories of Faith: Real People, Real Stories, Real Faith - Shelley Hitz,  C.J. Hitz,  Janet Perez Eckles,  Jorja Davis,  Kim Bookmyer,  Mark Moyers,  Lilly Maytree,  Carol Freed,  Laura J. Marshall,  Cheryl Rogers,  Victor Brodt,  Mikayla Kayne,  Paul B. Heidt,  Marilynn Dawson,  Mary L. Ball,  Nishoni Harvey,  Ruth Kyser,  Kryst Wow, what a great book! It really sucked me in. The stories are short and sweet, making the book easy to read. In the first day I got about a third of the way through before forcing myself to put the book down and go to bed. I found myself highlighting passages in almost every story because there were parts I wanted to remember and/or found very meaningful in regards to Faith. This book helped me re-examine and strengthen my own faith, and I think it takes a very special book to do that. 5 stars!I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review
The Eternity Cure - Julie Kagawa OMG. Amazing, amazing book. I just finished it and I don't even know how to make my feelings into coherent thoughts. In the last bit of the book I went from loving my life to anger and almost throwing my Kindle across the room. The epilogue saved my life, it gave me a reason to live again.
The Night Lives On - Walter Lord Drags in the beginning, but turns into a compelling read.
Firelight - Kristen Callihan If I could give out half stars Id bump this up to four and a half. Great book, I loved the the main romance. I had a few minor quibbles with the book but nothing that will keep me from reading the second once I have the money.

Currently reading

Dune
Frank Herbert
Prodigy
Marie Lu
The Casual Vacancy
J.K. Rowling
Both Sides
Paul E. Stawski