Saturday, September 28, 2013

September Book Haul Part 2

Alright so I am officially putting my self on a very real actual book buying ban and I have announced it to people to help me because I somehow ended up buying 17 books over 3 days right after I put up my original September book haul. So here's a 2nd one. Because I have problems.

Let me know down in the comments any of your thoughts on these books and if you've read them or anything else!

Books Mentioned in this Video:
Of Poseidon by Anna Banks
Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
Crank by Ellen Hopkins
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Eon and Eona by Alison Goodman
Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas
Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke
1984 by George Orwell
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Pathfinder by Orson Scott Card
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Proxy by Alex London
The Diviners by Libba Bray
Antigoddess by Kendare Blake

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak || Book Review

The Book Thief
Markus Zusak

Genre: Historical Fiction, YA, World War II
Publication Date: July 1, 2006
Number of Pages: 552
Source: Purchased
My Rating: 

It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.

The Book Thief is an amazingly written, life changing book. Everyone should read this book. The research and accuracy and time and heart Zusak put into this book shows throughout the entire book. Zusak is one of the most creative authors I have had the pleasure to read. I was constantly astounded by the uniqueness of his writing style.

When I first read this book in 2008 I wasn't old enough to understand most of the book and it's themes. I also didn't spend a whole lot of time contemplating the deeper meanings of the book and how in depth the thoughts behind it went. I still loved the book back then but for very different reasons.

To start with, I didn't understand the narrator was Death the first time I read this book. With that knowledge, this book suddenly becomes not only the story of a little girl, but a commentary on life and death. Death is probably the best narrator I have had the enjoyment to read. The way Zusak utilizes Death's omniscience and experiences to tell Liesel's story is breathtaking.

Zusak also captures a side of World War II that most books don't. The story isn't of Jews or people desperately attempting to save Jews or soldiers. It is about a little girl who doesn't fully understand what is going on. A girl who loves words and reading and how it changes her life in a few short years. And it made me think about how much I take books for granted.

I wish that more people would read this book. I wish school's everywhere would use this book to accompany teaching about the Holocaust.

I happily and full-heartedly give this book a shining five gold stars and if I could I'd give it more. Now go read this book.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

September 2013 Book Haul

In which I am really excited to read all of the books that I bought. Since this video's uploading a day ago, I have already bought 7 more books. I don't have a problem at all. Let me know in the comments if you have read any of these books and what you thought of them or if you want to read any of these books!

Books Mentioned in This Video:
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Crossed by Ally Condie
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith
Prodigy by Marie Lu
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Thursday, September 19, 2013

2013 YouTube Survey

In which I discuss the questions Alex Day has posed to YouTube this year! Let me know your answers in the comments if you don't want to make a video and if you do make a video let me know!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Fablehaven by Brandon Mull || Book Review

Brandon Mull

Genre: Fantasy, YA, Children's
Series: Fablehaven
Publication Date: July 1, 2006
Number of Pages: 351
Source: Purchased
My Rating: 

For centuries, mystical creatures of all description were gathered to a hidden refuge called Fablehaven to prevent their extinction. The sanctuary survives today as one of the last strongholds of true magic in a cynical world. Enchanting? Absolutely. Exciting? You bet. Safe? Well, actually, quite the opposite ... Kendra and her brother Seth have no idea their grandfather is the current caretaker of Fablehaven. Inside the gated woods, ancient laws give relative order among greedy trolls, mischievous satyrs, plotting witches, spiteful imps, and jealous fairies. However, when the rules get broken, an arcane evil is unleashed, forcing Kendra and Seth to face the greatest challenge of their lives. To save her family, Fablehaven, and perhaps the world, Kendra must find the courage to do what she fears most.

This was actually a reread for me. The first time I read this book was about 2008 and the differences of what I noticed this time through was really interesting.

Although Fablehaven is directed towards a younger audience I definitely still thoroughly enjoyed reading it. The plot is engaging and interesting and the characters are believable and even a little endearing now that I'm older. I love the way that Brandon Mull has integrated the modern world and the fantastical one. The idea that fantastic creatures are things that need protecting on preserves is one of the coolest ideas I've come across.

I don't really have any big problems with this book. It doesn't slow down, but it doesn't speed up a whole lot either. It's pretty even paced the whole way through. It's a great concept, but it never left me on the edge of my seat dying to know what happened next. It's also a tiny bit predictable and the side characters are a little underdeveloped. But this book is directed towards a younger audience, so I wasn't expecting it to be as intense as novels directed towards adults.

I also know what the next couple books have in store which makes me very excited to reread the next few and also finally finish the series. Overall I give Fablehaven 4 out of 5 stars.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Cinder by Marissa Meyer || Book Review

Marissa Meyer

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Series: The Lunar Chronicles, #1
Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Number of Pages: 387
Source: Purchased
My Rating: 
Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl. 

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

Cinder is by far the best take on Cinderella I have ever read. Even with the knowledge that the story was based off of the classic tale, I didn't find myself bored because it was the same old story. Because it wasn't the same old story, Marissa Meyer added in many other plot points such as the plague that kept me wondering what was going to happen anyways. The start of the book is the slowest part and every page gets more and more intense.

The futuristic world that Marissa Meyer sets up is one of the most interesting societies and worlds that I've seen set up with the history and different provinces and countries and so many other things. There are so many little details that are thrown in that make the world seem so believable and realistic. The characters are pretty well developed, especially considering that so much happened in the book.

The biggest problem I had with Cinder was that it was fairly predictable. I didn't ever find myself totally shocked with what happened next. But the world and the characters are so well developed that it didn't bother me that much.

Overall, I gave Cinder 4 out of 5 stars. It's a great new take on Cinderella and I definitely recommend it to anyone who thinks it sounds interesting.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

August Wrap Up and September TBR

Apologies to my poor plant that I kept hitting in this video. Comment what books you're looking forward to reading in the next month or if you have read any of the books in my TBR list. If you have, what did you think of them? I'd love to hear from you!

Books I Read in August:
Just Don't Fall by Josh Sundquist
Matched by Ally Condie
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Legend by Marie Lu
Batman Vol. 2: City of Owls
Aquaman Vol. 1: The Trench

Books I'm Planning on Reading in September:
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
Fablehaven by Brandon Mull
Carrie by Stephen King