Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Recent Reads 1/16

I thought that I should tell what I have read recently, and since my monthly reading phase depends on how buzy I am and what I am reading, I'll just recap all the books I've read this year so far. In the future I will probably try to space these a little more evenly, maybe every two or three months.

January: half of the Christmas holiday is during January, so I had extra time to read and read five books. First book I read was Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. It was the first time I read it in English and though I know all the Potter books are awesome, I didn't remember CoS being this good. I should re-read the rest of the series, too, which I will do once I get my hands on the English versions.
Then I read Sinner by Maggie Stiefvater, which I guess is a stand-alone sequel to the Shivers trilogy. I loved Shivers and my oh my did I love Sinner. Isabella and Cole are just the perfect imperfect couple and their undeniable chemistry works like nothing else and sparks fly throughout the book.
After Sinner I read Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and that was also extremely good. I had heard it would be good but the synopsis and reviews I had heard didn't quite prepare me for the adventure I stepped into. Basically it takes place in a virtual reality where there is a treasure hunt and the winner inherits the virtual reality company, so not a big deal or anything. My only complaint is that for a chapter or two in the middle of the story the pace kinda dropped and slowed down, but it was picked up fairly quickly and the rest was just great. Can't wait for them to make a movie out of this.
The second to last book I read in January was The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith, also known as J.K. Rowling. I had my doubts about this, because I'm not too into detective stories, but Auntie Row delivers as usual. The main character Cormoran Strike is a struggling private detective who forgot to cancel his contract with a temp agency. That gives him Robin Ellacott, who has dreamed of exciting things to happen to her. Together they try to figure out what happened to a model who according to police jumped from a balcony to her death.
And the last book I read in January is So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish by Douglas Adams, which is the fourth book in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. The book is as crazy as the first three, going across time and space and nothing seems to be impossible.

February: in February I only read two books, because I started to prepare for my university entrance exam and that took a majority of my time. First I read Mostly Harmless by Douglas Adams, the fifth and last book to his Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. The book stayed on the same course as the previous four, but I expected a little more since this ended the series. The different plotlines were not resolved like I would have wanted and I was left a bit confused after finishing this. I understand there is a sixth book to this series, but it's written by Eoin Colfer, so I might check that out sometime in hopes that there I could find true closure.
The second book I read in the month of February was The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick. The book is set after the second World War, but the winners were Japan and Germany and world is build according to their preferences. The book follows a couple of characters who try to cope with the world, and one of them stumbles onto a sort of revolutionary, strictly forbidden book, The Man in the High Castle which tells how the world would be had the Alliance won the war. The book is very short, only about 300 pages when this could have been made into a whole series. Amazon has adapted this to a TV show and the first season aired last year. I watched it after reading the book and holy cow it was good and felt very fresh, I can honestly recommend it to anyone who likes series with a little historical and political aspects.

March: my March was filled with Percy Jackson, since I only read books by Rick Riordan. I re-read the Battle of the Labyrinth and the Last Olympian and then I went through Percy Jackson and the Greek Gods and Percy Jackson and the Greek Heroes. The last two were a bit hard to get through, at least I felt like it, because they were a collection of short stories about Greek gods and Greek heroes and being so there was no coherent plot. Also Riordan's joky style didn't quite fit with these stories since they mostly are tragic and serious tales.

April: in April I only read one huge book, the Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky. The story of the book is about a young guy who lives in poverty and tries to improve his situation by murdering and robbing a shylock. After the crime he is constantly worried about getting caught and gets into all sorts of situations following his crime. The book is clearly a product of its time, the description of the poverty and the poor and the constant suffering is present all along. I found the story a bit static and tedious at points, but I'm glad I went through it.

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