Book review: ”American Gods”

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Title: ”American Gods”

Author: Neil Gaiman

Published: 2001 (the TV Tie-In was published in 2017)

Pages: 541

Format: paperback

Goodreads rating: 5☆

Blurb:

Locked behind bars for three years, Shadow did his time, quietly waiting for the day when he could return to Eagle Point, Indiana. A man no longer scared of what tomorrow might bring, all he wanted was to be with Laura, the wife he deeply loved, and start a new life.

But just days before his release, Laura and Shadow’s best friend are killed in an accident. With his life in pieces and nothing to keep him tethered, Shadow accepts a job from a beguiling stranger he meets on the way home, an enigmatic man who calls himself Mr. Wednesday. A trickster and a rogue, Wednesday seems to know more about Shadow than Shadow does himself.

Life as Wednesday’s bodyguard, driver, and errand boy is far more interesting and dangerous than Shadow ever imagined. Soon Shadow learns that the past never dies…and that beneath the placid surface of everyday life a storm is brewing – an epic war for the very soul of America – and that he is standing squarely in its path.

Review:

Thank you man at the bookshop! Honestly, I just love it when people I don’t know come and recommend really good books to me. I dare say this has been the best recommendation I’ve got so far 😀

At first I was quite intimidated by the book, I mean take a look at it. It’s a huge book and I felt kind of like maybe the story would be too much for me to handle. Well now that I’ve read it I am really cursing myself for underestimating my reading potential. I have shied away from books like this for way too long!

“All your questions can be answered, if that is what you want. But once you learn your answers, you can never unlearn them.” 

This novel was by far one of the most complex books I’ve read…ever. Just when I thought I had it all figured out, something happened or something was said that just turned the story in a different direction a bit. It never went far from the main storyline, but it did tip the scales on many occasions.

I am a really big fan of mythology, legends and all sorts of beliefs, and reading about them never fails to nail me to the spot. Neil Gaiman did such an amazing job here with his take on religion and gods. It felt like such an inventive and shocking way to talk about these ”taboo” topics.

“There’s never been a true war that wasn’t fought between two sets of people who were certain they were in the right. The really dangerous people believe they are doing whatever they are doing solely and only because it is without question the right thing to do. And that is what makes them dangerous.” 

Besides the way Gaiman gave on the story of the main character, the way he wrote it, I absolutely loved the crazy-all-over-the-place band of characters he had. The way they interacted and the way they reflected the cultures they (speaking of the gods here) represented was mind-blowing. I freaking loved the concept of ”new” taking over the ”old”, the fight between traditions and beliefs born hundreds of years ago and then something new born out of addiction to change (pretty much, I mean?!).

“Gods die. And when they truly die they are unmourned and unremembered. Ideas are more difficult to kill than people, but they can be killed, in the end.” 

And of course putting asides the gods, we have to talk about the main character Shadow, who is one of the greatest main characters to this day, whose POV I’ve read from. When there are usually lots of moments where I doubt the main characters decisions and sayings, then with Shadow this didn’t happen. I vey much liked the way he thought and acted. There was a pleasant ”I don’t give a damn!” air about him and it made Shadow so much more interesting. Seeing this man just quite casually come to terms with everything happening was funny in a way. I feel like the reader could really feel all his pain that came from being in prison and losing his wife, through his actions and words. Every emotion came through really well.

“I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you’re alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.” 

There were so many things about this novel that just made me fall in love with reading all over again and to put everything I felt into words, is kind of impossible. Neil Gaiman truly is a master of his art.

“Every hour wounds. The last one kills.” 

If anyone is in search of a book that is urban fantasy and mythology and a whole bunch of crazy mixed together… this is the book for you!

“Too much talking these days. Talk talk talk. This country would get along much better if people learned how to suffer in silence.” 

Check the book out on Goodreads here.

 

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Book review: “Edith & Oliver”

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Title: ”Edith & Oliver”

Author: Michele Forbes

Published: 2017

Number of pages: 320

Format: paperback

Received for review from Hachette UK.

Blurb:

From the author of Ghost Moth, one of the most acclaimed debuts of 2014, a stunning second novel which will put Michèle Forbes in the league of Colm Toíbín, Anne Enright and Sebastian Barry.

Edith was born into a different world. But her rebellious nature brought her to the seedy glamour of the music hall, where she plays the piano by night.

Oliver is an illusionist of moderate repute. But he is a man of ambition. He wants to tour the world, to pioneer ground-breaking illusions.

History and fate have other ideas.

When Edith and Oliver meet they fall headlong in love. But their children arrive as the world begins to change, as cinemas crowd the high street and the draw of the music hall wanes. What follows is a struggle: against the entropy of marriage, against the march of time, and against Oliver’s flaws-flaws that may cost them everything.

Review:

This book ended up being a DNF for me, which is sad since it was a book I was so looking forward to reading. I am very thankful though, for having received this book from Hachette UK ❤

I am very sorry for taking so long with this review, I haven’t posted a review in months (I believe ._. ) and it is so hard to get back on track with everything. Someone should just hand me the award for worst blogger of all time. Seriously. I suck at doing this, big time.

Now onto the review!

The book itself has a very promising premise, from the blurb it sounds like something that I would normally enjoy a lot. But the thing with historical fiction (and me) is that it might sound good and it could even be good in the beginning, but it can end up being a total flop really fast. I am just very sensitive (is that the right word?) towards historical fiction and the novels that I like in the genre.

This book was one that I didn’t enjoy. I started reading it as soon as I had it out of the package it was sent in and read it for a couple of days, and then things went south. I put the book aside and in no way felt inclined to pick it up again and continue reading it. The same thing happened when I tried to read it again during my summer vacation, I started from the beginning and then got about a hundred pages in… and just didn’t feel like reading on. To be honest the feeling to stop came much sooner than that.

I think the very problem that kept me from finishing and enjoying this was the writing style. There were things about the way the novel was written that didn’t click with me and made the story lose value in my eyes. Everything progressed really fast in the book and was in a way so half-heartedly written that the story felt incomplete and unfinished, sort of like a draft.

Besides the writing, the characters in the book were also ones I didn’t sympathize with. I didn’t like the characters, and if possible I liked them less than the writing style. There was no real depth there and I just… feel like it could have been more special, you know?

There are reviews for this book that are really positive and say that it is really good and I think my mistake was to trust just those few reviews that I read. This book does sound good and I don’t doubt there being people who like it and who will like it, it just wasn’t for me and I will now just set this book aside for the time being (that being probably forever). But who knows, maybe one day I’ll need a book to read and then I can take this off my shelf again.

Check the book out on Goodreads here.

Book review: “Geekerella”

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Book title: ”Geekerella”

Author: Ashley Poston

Publication year: 2017

Number of pages: 320

Format: paperback

Amount of stars I gave on Goodreads: 4☆

Blurb:

Anything can happen once upon a con…

When geek girl Elle Wittimer sees a cosplay contest sponsored by the producers of Starfield, she has to enter. First prize is an invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. Elle’s been scraping together tips from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck behind her stepmother’s back, and winning this contest could be her ticket out once and for all—not to mention a fangirl’s dream come true.

Teen actor Darien Freeman is less than thrilled about this year’s ExcelsiCon. He used to live for conventions, but now they’re nothing but jaw-aching photo sessions and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Federation Prince Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but the diehard Starfield fandom has already dismissed him as just another heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, closet nerd Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise.

Review:

I read this book for a group that I am a member of on Goodreads, called Crush that TBR.

The book, just like I thought it would be, was cute and adorable.I am a huge sucker for anything and everything that is a ”remake” of the Cinderella story. All the movies that have been made are honestly such guilty pleasure movies and when I first heard about this book I was more than excited to read it.

It was told from two POVs: that of Cinderella or Geekerella and the Prince.

The main character Elle was sassy and confident, but still doubted herself from time to time and it was really easy to actually like her. I found her quick friendship with Sage really endearing. They worked really well together and it was a really nice take on the Fairy Godmother situation.

“-Elle, we might not know much about each other, and I might not be there, and you might not be here, but I’m glad I share this sky with you.
-Maybe we should start looking up together, ah’blena” 

The ”prince” was a famous teen actor named Darien, and his point of view was entertaining to read. There were a few moments when the things he thought made me feel like skipping his chapters, but I made it through them and all of them were not as silly as I thought they would be.

The relationship between Darien and Elle was very instantaneous. I mean it was so in the Cinderella story as well, but I wished it had been dragged out a bit more or seemed a bit more special. But it was great that it wasn’t just one night and BAM! love. They texted first and that way it didn’t seem that unimaginable.

“My dad said that the impossible is only impossible if you don’t even try. So I want to try.”

The evil stepmother and sisters were, just as always, very unlikeable, although Cal did have a nice side and, her and Sage was a really nice twist in the story. The way the book was written was fun and easy to read, there were some great one-liners and overall I enjoyed the whole book a lot.

“She wears life like Elvis wore sequins, with no apology laced into the seams.” 

Because I myself am a crazy fangirl, then the whole atmosphere of the book and the emotions of the characters towards their beloved show was something I could relate to a lot.

“Look to the stars. Aim. Ignite.” 

This was a very short review on ”Geekerella” just to give an overview of my thoughts and to prove to everyone I am still alive and well 🙂 It might take me some time to get used to writing reviews again, I had such a hard time writing this, because I have been procrastinating like hell. I have some serious consistency problems, people.

Check the book out on Goodreads here.

Book review: ”A Court of Wings and Ruin”

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Book title: ”A Court of Wings and Ruin” (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3)

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Publication year: 2017

Number of pages: 707

Format: ebook

Amount of stars I gave on Goodreads: 5☆

Blurb:

Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.

Review:

Absolutely speechless. I waited a few days to write this and still I don’t think I have words to explain how amazing this book was.

“It is a new world, and we must decide how we are to end this old one and begin it anew.”   

Sarah J. Maas has done it again with the great characters and a gripping plot. I will try to keep this short and keep all the spoilers to myself.

This book made ma laugh, cry and smile and it made my heart stop and it made me angry. In the end the book ended on such a beautiful note and I couldn’t have been happier.

“It’s a rare person to face who they are and not run from it – not be broken by it.”

Feyre and Rhysand were a total power couple. The one thing I loved the most was the way Feyre took a stand for herself and sassed everyone. It was beautiful. Rhysand was a sweet murderous High Lord as always and of course the Inner Circle was absolutely wonderful.

“I see all of you, Rhys. And there is not one part that i do not love with everything I am.”   

This time Feyre’s sisters were also in the Circle and Lucien as well. They were all really great, well-rounded characters and I think Nesta is now my favourite out of all the characters. I just liked her so much.

“And death at Nesta’s hands … I wondered if they’d have to invent a new word for killing when she was done with Graysen.”

The plot was fast-paced and the twists just never ended. I loved the battle scenes and how well written they were. They were not too long or too descriptive which is something I don’t like about battle scenes, so these were really good. The scheming and plans were really exciting, the characters that came to aid…everything was perfect.

“My goal was bigger than revenge. My purpose greater than personal retribution.”   

Also, I  really enjoyed that we got to see the other High Lords in this book and get to know them a little bit as well, since in the first two they weren’t really around that much.

As I understand there will be more stories set in Prythian and I cannot wait to read them. These books have definitely slithered into my heart and will stay there until the end of time.

If you haven’t read this yet, you have a lot to look forward to!!!! An amazing novel and conclusion ❤

Check the book out on Goodreads here.

 

Book review: ”Hole in the Middle”

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Book title: ”Hole in the Middle”

Author: Kendra Fortmeyer

Publication year: 2017 (July 6th 2017)

Number of pages: 368

Format: paperback, sent for review, proof copy

Amount of stars I gave on Goodreads: 4☆

Blurb:

How do you know who you are when part of you is missing?

Morgan, a Raleigh teen who’s spent her life concealing the eerie hole in her torso, confronts a world obsessed with body image, internet celebrity, and unlikely love stories.

Review:

This book was sent to me by Hachette UK. This is the very first proof copy of a book I have read and I was really excited to read something a few months before it is supposed to come out.

”Hole in the Middle” is a YA novel about a 17-year-old girl who has a hole in her body. Anyone could literally put a fist through her body…not that she would let that happen of course. Then one day she is told there is a way to help her, as well as a teenage boy. It was quite an original and quirky book.

I liked this book for the sassy characters and the fact that they very well depicted what friendships are like, including all the ups and downs. Morgan as a main character at times seemed annoying but did make up for it. Caro was such an amazing girl, she was very positive towards life and towards her and everyone else’s bodies. She was there for Morgan and Morgan was there for her.

This book, of course, has romance in it and I didn’t mind it at all. It was sweet. One thing that bothered me about the novel was the timeline. It was so confusing because it moved between two days and then suddenly weeks had passed and I sort of felt like maybe I was missing something.

Morgan had a very strange relationship with her mother and it seemed to me like it wasn’t really solved and I would have liked for that to have happened. There were also a few strange mistakes within the story regarding some details, but it could be my mistake for maybe not noticing some things.

It was fun and I do think readers have a lot to look forward to in July.

Check the book out on Goodreads here.

Book review: ”Passenger”

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Book title: ”Passenger” (Passenger #1)

Author: Alexandra Bracken

Publication year: 2016

Number of pages: 496

Format: paperback

Amount of stars I gave on Goodreads: 2☆

Blurb:

In one devastating night, Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has travelled not just miles but years from home.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods – a powerful family in the Colonies – and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, his passenger, can find.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveller who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to their target, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home forever.

Review:

The first book in a duology and a book with a promising premise. It was disappointing.

I had such high hopes for this book and sadly have to say that I was underwhelmed.

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The aspect of time travel seemed so great and since I haven’t really read any books that have time travel in them, I was intrigued. The book has great reviews on Goodreads, but there were a few that aren’t that happy about the book. Here I am now, one of those who has to say the book fell short of what it promised to be.

“It’s our choices that matter in the end. Not wishes, not words, not promises.”

First of all there was so much left unanswered or things that weren’t described and were left vague. I had so many questions at the end of the book. Also I hoped it would be a lot more action-packed and more circled around the time periods that were used in the book. I would have liked to see the history a bit more. As for the action it was all very soft and mild. The whole business with the one family trying to get control and conflicts between all the characters could have been so exciting.

The main character, Etta, was sassy and that is something I always respect. Other than that she wasn’t really that memorable. I did like that she walked into danger without overanalyzing everything.

“Good ideas had in the dark were generally best left there.”   

The book was told from two perspectives, one was Etta’s and the second Nicholas’. His one was rather boring. He wasn’t a well-rounded character and he wasn’t in my opinion very 18th century…which is where he was from. The romance between her and Etta was nonexistent in my opinion, no chemistry whatsoever and it was just too far-fetched. I think, they were good buds, definitely not more. There just wasn’t any real reason for them to be so head over heels in love with each other.

Things got interesting in the end when Etta’s mother appeared and teamed up with Nicholas. I am going to read the second book, mainly because I bought it with ”Passenger” and don’t want to let the money go to waste. But I also know that people liked ”Wayfarer” better. And I would like to see where everything and everyone ends up.

“There are rules, but rules may be rewritten if only one hand holds the ink.”   

I do hope the conclusion is better with the detailing and building of the world. The time travel aspect in this book was great, don’t get me wrong. A lot of things were well thought out and explained, but it did feel incomplete in a way.

Check the book out on Goodreads here.

Book review: ”Crooked Kingdom”

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Book title: ”Crooked Kingdom” (Six of Crows #2)

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Publication year: 2016

Number of pages: 536

Format: paperback

Amount of stars I gave on Goodreads: 5☆

Blurb:

Welcome to the world of the Grisha.

After pulling off a seemingly impossible heist in the notorious Ice Court, criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker feels unstoppable. But life is about to take a dangerous turn – and with friends who are among the deadliest outcasts in Ketterdam city, Kaz is going to need more than luck to survive in this unforgiving underworld.

As gripping, sweeping and memorable as the Grisha trilogy – SHADOW AND BONE, SIEGE AND STORM and RUIN AND RISING – this novel is perfect for fans of Laini Taylor, Kristin Cashore and GAME OF THRONES.

Review:

This book gave me a serious hangover. I just don’t think any book could be as good as this one…at least not right now. One thing that is certain is that I loved this book a lot more than the first one.

“Fear is a phoenix. You can watch it burn a thousand times and still it will return.”   

The plot just like in  ”Six of Crows” was absolutely amazing. It was intricate, interesting, fast-paced and it was really hard to put it down. I was again amazed by the logic behind all the plans and schemes, just when I thought I was catching onto something, it all changed.

Wylan and Jesper are probably one of my main OTPs and I freaked out when they finally had their moment. They are just too precious. Matthias and Nina were the same bickering couple and it was just really cute. The duology actually, I guess,  has three OTPs, even though the one that is Kaz and Inej wasn’t exactly the best…I feel like Inej deserved better. But I did like Kaz, he is a total anti-hero.

“I don’t hold a grudge. I cradle it. I coddle it. I feed it fine cuts of meat and send it to the best schools. I nurture my grudges, Rollins.”   

This book made me cry, which just shows how much I love the characters and the story. I don’t want to say too much, because maybe someone hasn’t read this, but just know that one character died and it broke me. I cried for like a solid half hour.

“I don’t like this.”
“To be fair, Matthias, you don’t like much.”   

It is so hard to review books that I love, because I never have the words to put my feelings out there for everyone to read. Leigh Bardugo has created the best world full of magic and political intrigue and deceit. I have to get around to reading the Grisha trilogy, which came before the ”Six of Crows”.

“Suffering is like anything else. Live with it long enough, you learn to like the taste.”   

I seriously have no idea what else to say. A cunning story that will make every reader hold their breath, waiting for the next twists and turns. Highly recommend reading this ❤

Check the book out on Goodreads here.