Saturday, June 28, 2014

Clockwork Princess

I'm not sure how I feel about Clockwork Princess.  I enjoyed it, but I feel like the book was written to make everyone happy.  (If you've read it, you know what I mean and please feel free to discuss in the comments.)  I was excited, entertained, riveted throughout the story.  I love that Tessa comes into her own. I do like that her end and Jem's wasn't as "neat" as Cassandra Clare could have written it.  I loved all the connections to The Mortal Instruments series.  I loved that a man took a woman's name.  There were so many good things about Clockwork Princess.  I may wonder about the end, but I loved it too. So, even if Clare did write it to please as many people as possible, I think it was successful.  Or maybe I'm just jaded because I've read several series where central characters are killed off.... 

The Infernal Devices is a great series.  I can see myself reading it years down the road when I needs something fun and exciting.  I also think it was a lot of fun to read it staggered with the last three books of The Mortal Instruments.  I wonder what the connections will be when I read City of Heavenly Fire.  I can't really say anything else without giving away the whole book.  I feel spoilery even mentioning Henry's red hair!  I'm hoping though, that we'll see Tessa again one day.

Thursday, June 26, 2014


I seem to be reading books because I "have to" this month. Alias Grace, The Strain and now Delirium. I'm happy to say none of these books have disappointed me.  I heard that the Delirium pilot was going to be made available online for all the fans to watch. I have watched tweet after tweet, comment after comment, loving this pilot that wasn't picked up.  Well, I better read this book and watch this pilot, because for whatever reason* I have to know what's going on.

Delirium was fantastic.  Lauren Oliver creates a world where love is a disease.  Romantic love is the focus of the disease, but by taking that love away, they also take the love a parent feels for a child.  Reading the descriptions of parents ignoring the pained screams of their children when they hurt themselves (even just minor booboos) really resonated with me.  What disturbed me more were the cases of parents who couldn't bond with their child at all.  I know that Delirium has the teen-romance-dystopian thing going on, and it was great, well-written and believable, but that people could choose not to love their children bothered me.

I thought Delirium had a fascinating premise, which is what drew me to it.  The characters, Lena, Alex, Hana, Carol, Grace, they kept me reading.  What I want to know more of is, how did this happen?  How did Romeo and Juliet become a cautionary tale of the love disease?  I'm hoping to find out more in the second book, Pandemonium.  I've noticed this with some YA dystopian series.  The first book hooks you with a crazy story, the second and/or third books gives you the why, the explanation.  I wouldn't have minded a little hint in the first book though.  I would have also liked for Delirium to be a little more enclosed.  It doesn't exist on it's own as a novel as much as other first books have.  The ending was exciting, but there was too much left unwritten.  I'm still prepared to soak up every bit of the series.  

*Honestly, I don't usually read because of hype, but something about Delirium's buzz (and The Strain's), I couldn't resist.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Strain Strain television series is making it's way to FX (and FX Canada) this summer.  I've had The Strain sitting on my shelf for quite some time.  I don't know why I hadn't read it.  With the television show premiere date fast approaching I figured I aught to read it right now.  I don't know why I waiting so long.  The Strain was more than I expected.  It was dark, gruesome without being overly gory.  It reached for my emotions with a stinger.

I loved Eph.  Everything about him.  A scientist, a healer, a father and a vampire hunter.  He was a fantastic main character.  I can't wait to see what he does next.  I'd also like to see what Nora does next.  I feel like she wasn't developed enough and she only existed to deepen Eph's angst.  A few of the characters were like that.  They either existed for Eph or for Setrakian.  I loved Setrakian's story. Holocaust survivor and vampire hunter.  He had a cool basement.

The Strain was creepy, tense and. great flow to the whole story with characters that you care about. I was in the novel's grip.  I wanted to know what happened next.  Too many nights I stayed up because I just had to finish "one more page".  What happened when the flight came down, seemed so real.  If a strain was going to be let loose on a city, they would do it this way.  I'm so excited to read The Fall, which I have... staring at me right now with its red and black eyes....

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

City of Lost Souls

City of Lost Souls is the fifth book in Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments series. Before I get into the story, I have to ask, who is proofing the books? I saw more than one error in City of Lost Souls. It wasn't many, maybe three, but I also noticed it in the last book of Clare's I read. Is it a coincidence? I don't know. What I do know is that I find errors disturbing to the flow of my reading. Please, remember commas.

I loved Isabelle & Simon, and Magnus & Alec. I'm really interested to see how these relationships turn out. They aren't the star couples of the series, but they are the most appealing to me. I'm continually annoyed at Clary. I think the conversation that she and Jace have at the end is to try to justify her behaviour, but I still found some of her decisions questionable. I do like the development of her relationship with Izzy though. Clare has developed Sebastian in Lost Souls. He's grown beyond the monster he was in Fallen Angels.  Sebastian is a complex antagonist and there are moments where you feel sympathy for him. He's batshit crazy, but you know it's because of his father, who treated all his children as experiments.  I'm excited to see what happens to him.

I'm really looking forward to City of Heavenly Fire. I want to see the war they keep portending. I'm looking forward to some shocking, gasp inducing moments. I'm glad I won't be waiting too long.

Friday, June 06, 2014

The Dark Tower: the Gunslinger - The Man In Black

The Dark Tower: the Gunslinger - The Man In Black was everything I've come to expect from the Dark Tower graphic novel series.  The Man In Black is the "end of the beginning".  It deals with Roland's relationship with Jake (just like in the novel), and Walter sends him on the path to the Dark Tower.  I loved that it stayed true to the original story, but with the added bits you can only include in a graphic novel.  The art very much suited the mood of the story, and Roland's appearance in The Man In Black was pretty much how I imagined it for the entire series.

I know there's another Dark Tower graphic novel.  Last Shots I believe tells the story of Sheemie, so it's sort of a prequel/parallel story instead of a continuation.  I wondered as I drew closer to the end of The Man In Black if there would be more graphic novels. The second novel, The Drawing Of The Three is one of my favourite Stephen King books and I'd love to see it in graphic novel form. However, there are eight novels.  They can't all be adapted, right? I'm slightly obsessed with this series though, so if they write them, I will read them.

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

X-Men: Days of Future Past

X-Men: Days of Future Past was pretty much exactly what I wanted from the latest X-Men film. It brought together the mutants from the old trilogy and the last movie.  They blended together so well.  I really enjoyed the new mutants too, Bishop, Blink, Warpath and Sunspot... and Quicksilver!  I thought teenage Quicksilver was fun, cheeky and added the right bit of humour during an action filled movie.  I love all the moments, the mutants from the past/present/future popping up to say hello.  I love that they acknowledge Wolverine being in First Class.  I loved the end.  I loved the post-credits scene and as soon as I saw the sand, I knew what it was going to be about.

I have a complicated relationship with time travel in movies and television.  Sometimes I hate it.  I hate when no one remembers the original timeline.  I hate when all the characters lose time and it isn't even acknowledged.  I hate when it's used as a tool of convenience.  I like when time travel allows characters to witness events, even if they don't change them.  I have enjoyed time travel as a fix, with a celebration or acknowledgement of the fix by someone.  I liked the time travel in Days of Future Past.  I maybe would have rather had Bishop or Professor X doing the time travelling, but I understand why it was Wolverine.  I also liked that they kept Kitty as the vehicle for the time travel.  I know that a lot of people (including myself) were not happy with the ending of X3, but Days of Future Past makes up for it.  If you haven't seen it yet, Days of Future Past is worth your time.  It might be my favourite of all the X-Men movies.

Monday, June 02, 2014

A Few Words About Alias Grace

Alias Grace was simply amazing.  I don't know why I waited so long to read it.  I'm going to be waiting just a bit longer to post about it.  Alias Grace is my Spin book from the Classics Club.  As such, the post is not supposed to go up until July 7th.  

I started Alias Grace so early because it's not a short book and I wanted to have it completed on time.  When I read Villette I was late and when I read Lives of Girls and Women I barely made it.  Now, I'm much too early, since the post won't be going up for over a month.

I couldn't let this moment pass, however, without saying that I thought Alias Grace was a fantastic novel.  I couldn't stop reading it.  Margaret Atwood is one of my favourite writers and it is because of stories like Alias Grace.