Wednesday, April 29, 2015

April Wrap Up + Review

1. When I’m gone by Abbi Glines


Mase Colt-Manning has always preferred his humble life as a Texas rancher to his birthright as the son of a legendary rock star. In fact, he rarely visits his father’s rarefied world in Rosemary Beach, especially if it means bunking at his vile half-sister Nan’s house—until one visit leads to a chance encounter with a young, gorgeous house maid who awakens him with her off-key but spirited imitation of a country music star… Reese Ellis finally has her freedom. After escaping a lifetime of abuse from her parents and classmates for an undiagnosed learning disorder, she seizes the opportunity to be a house maid to some of the richest families in Rosemary Beach. But her job is in jeopardy when she causes an accident at the home of her most important client, Nan Dillon. When a hot, half-naked stranger with a cowboy’s swagger comes to her rescue, she’s intrigued—then afraid once he shows his own interest. Reese has never met a trustworthy man in her life. Will Mase be any different? 

Rating: 2.5/5
         I was hoping more for this book. I love Abbi Glines, her sea breeze series is my favorite of hers. But this book is what I would say common. The plot is not unique in the sense that its elements are the same with Abbi’s other books. I was hoping something new from her, maybe a new approach to this type of stories. Furthermore, the plot was too concentrated on Reese Elis that it did not show the deeper side of Mase Colt-Manning, therefore for me there is a lack of connection between the reader and Mase. I love how we see the development of Reese in the story but I hope in the next book, we see a more in depth story of Mase (about his childhood and his relationship with his father), and see his development as a character.

2. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon


Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow.

Although gifted with a superbly logical brain, for fifteen-year-old Christopher everyday interactions and admonishments have little meaning. He lives on patterns, rules, and a diagram kept in his pocket. Then one day, a neighbor's dog, Wellington, is killed and his carefully constructive universe is threatened. Christopher sets out to solve the murder in the style of his favourite (logical) detective, Sherlock Holmes. What follows makes for a novel that is funny, poignant and fascinating in its portrayal of a person whose curse and blessing are a mind that perceives the world entirely literally. 

Rating: 4/5

I would say this is an interesting read because it is my first time reading a book that is narrated by a person with autism. It is eye opening because I get to get a glimpse on what they are thinking. Well, in this case Christopher’s point of view. We see how different he is from us in a way that he does not understand the emotions people and he gets very agitated when people physically touch him.

In this book, we could see their family and community structure in how they deal with Christopher’s disability. In this book, the reader can see how different characters have a different ways of dealing with Christopher. Also, the characters in this book are relatable to the readers with how they deal with struggles and their coping mechanisms. Especially with Christopher even though he is autistic, we see ourselves in him in how he deals with the truth. What I love about this book is how the author introduces the book with in a light matter (with the mystery of the murdered dog) than shocks the readers with another mystery that has to do with Christopher.  Reading the plot I though it is just about this autistic boy that is trying solves the mystery of the murdered dog but after reading this book I can say that this book is more than that. Plus the pacing and flow is good, I did not like the middle of the book (when Christopher was going to London) because it was draggy and it bored me a little but it made redemption with the ending. The ending was so good. It shows how the problem is being resolve in a slow process.

3. Panic by Lauren Oliver


Panic began as so many things do in Carp, a dead-end town of 12,000 people in the middle of nowhere: because it was summer, and there was nothing else to do. Heather never thought she would compete in Panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She’d never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought. Dodge has never been afraid of Panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game, he’s sure of it. But what he doesn't know is that he’s not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for. For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliance, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them—and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most. 

Rating: 2/5

            I had a hard time reading this book because I couldn’t get in to it. I started reading this late September/early October and I would just get bored of it a stop but I have finally picked it up again and just read to get it over with. The characters were flat, un-relatable and annoying. They just have the criteria and characteristics any bad young adult character could have. The do “stupid” stuff on the spur of their emotions. Plus, I don’t see the characters growing into more than young adults. We do not see how mature they are in the end.

            Furthermore, in term of plot I would say that it is a cheap version of ready player one by Ernest Cline where in the real world is ugly and the only thing to do is join a game in order to separate themselves from the ugly reality. 

Moreover, Panic is about discovering yourself (conquering fears), and forming and testing friends. This book shows people doing crazy things for love. Also, it shows that there is a thin line between bravery and stupidity.

4. Scott Pilgrim 01: Precious Little Life by Bryan Lee O’ Malley


 Scott Pilgrim's life is totally sweet. He's 23 years old, he's in a rockband, he's ""between jobs,"" and he's dating a cute high school girl. Nothingcould possibly go wrong, unless a seriously mind-blowing, dangerouslyfashionable, rollerblading delivery girl named Ramona Flowers starts cruisingthrough his dreams and sailing by him at parties. Will Scott's awesome life getturned upside-down? Will he have to face Ramona's seven evil ex-boyfriends inbattle? The short answer is yes. The long answer is Scott Pilgrim, Volume 1: Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life

Rating: 4/5

         The graphic novel shows teenage angst and problems that teenagers deal with like love and friends (growing up in general). I like all the characters and I like seeing their similarities and differences from one another and how they clash and bond with one another.  My favorite is Wallace who is Scott’s gay best friend. He is just funny, and does not care what others think or say and is very outspoken.
            Furthermore, the graphic novel is fast pace and easy to get in to. It is very entertaining and the drawing style is amazing. Even though it is about a normal teenage boy the drawing is in a superhero/game style with the coins appearing after Scott’s fights with Matthew Patel.

5. The Revenge Of Seven by Pittacus Lore


The Garde have suffered an unbearable loss. Number Five has betrayed them. Eight is gone forever. Ella has been kidnapped. The others are now scattered. In Chicago, John makes the unlikeliest of allies: Adam, a Mogadorian who turned his back on his people. He has invaluable information about Mog technology, battle strategies, and weaknesses. Most important, he knows where to hit them: their command base near Washington, DC. During the assault, however, John and Adam learn the unimaginable truth: it is too late. The Mogadorians have commenced their ultimate invasion plans. With a front-row seat to the impending invasion, Ella finds herself in the hands of the enemy. For some reason she's more valuable to them alive, and they'll stop at nothing to turn her. Meanwhile, Six, Nine, and Marina make their way through the Florida Everglades, hot on the trail of the traitorous Five. With the development of a new Legacy, Marina finally has the power to fight back—if her thirst for revenge doesn't consume her first.

Rating: 5/5

            That cliffhanger!!! Pittacus Lore (pseudonyms of James Frey and Jobie Hughes) why must you do this to me, again?!?

            Anyway, the plot is not draggy and it kept me on the edge of my seat. Plus the last part gave me a mini heart attack. It also has the right amount of action, comedy, and romance with out it being cheesy or going out the point of the book. Because other science fiction * ehem * the host * ehem * has too much romance in it that it does not feel like a science fiction book anymore.

            Furthermore, the characters were on point, especially in this book because we get to see their deeper side with their mourning for eight and their intentions. We see their flexibility in terms of their emotions due to the fact that they show toughness and softness throughout the book. An example of this is Nine because he shows that he is sad and greatly affected of eights death but at the same time he continues to put on a strong face and jokes around. And because of that Nine is my favorite character. I love his jokes and lines but at the same time we see a serious side of him. He just has the perfect balance of humor and seriousness that I really like. Moreover, the Lorien characters are very relatable. Even though that they are aliens they are still humanized in a way that they struggle with teenage problems (like love and death of a friend). Plus, we see them mature in this book, especially Marina (Her dealing the lost of her soul mate, and her process of grieving and acceptance), and Five (Him trying to do right his wrong doings).  

So far this series definitely haven’t disappointed me and I can’t wait to read the next book, which is going to be the last one.

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