So Much For Normal… (Paranormalcy – A Book Review)

Paranormacly
Author: Kiersten White
Published: 2010

On Goodreads

Paranormalcy

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt

 

I see things you can’t see.

I find things that hunt you.

I am your protector.

But even I can’t protect you now.

Evie works for the International Paranormal Containment Agency (IPCA) and her job is to bag and tag paranormals so that they don’t hurt humans. Easy enough. She’s been doing it since her time in the foster system. Her norm is being friends with a mermaid and having a faerie ex-boyfriend.

Life gets a little complicated after capturing an unknown shapeshifter named Lend while paranormals begin turning up dead. Thought told to ignore this case, she is determined to figure out what’s happening, especially since she’s having strange dreams. With Lend’s help she will find the one responsible for this, but what scares her is that she’s connected to it all.

 

So much diversity. YAY! There were so many different supernaturals across this book. Each of them were unique and incredible. There were even a couple I’d not heard of. One of my favorites things about this book was how the supernaturals didn’t feel like monsters, like they tend to in other supernatural novels. They were just like humans, trying to survive life. In some cases, it was really funny.

One thing I will say is, there is a decent amount of mention about the world’s elements that supernaturals belong to, but I wish I knew more about them. I wanted to know more about these elements and which supernaturals belonged to which.

Evie is whimsical and really reminds me of Elle Woods. Her and the trusty taser: Tasey were hard at work bringing in those feisty supernaturals. She really brings out the soap opera aspect of this book. She’s the butter of seeking the normal life. I was giggling at how ecstatic she was over the simple things, but only because there are a few simple things that get my eyes glittering, too.

Evie, Lend, and Reth—an unknown, shapeshifter, and a faerie. One intriguing and whimsical triangle. Evie’s romantic life is complicated and it shouldn’t be as a teenager. While getting stalked by her ex, Reth, she’s falling for Lend, one of her bag-and-tags. Lend is my favorite. I admire a sense of authority, like Reth has, that you can screw with, but Lend was a sweetheart unlike him. He’s manipulative and reckless with Evie. Freaking faeries…so damn mischievous! And granted, Lend’s guarded, but his heart is in the right place, caring for Evie. He’s the good guy and after all of the tough times that Evie’s been through, she deserves a good guy that treats her right, like this guy…

Paranormacly

or this guy…

Paranormalcy

 

This book wasn’t all that for me. It was fun, but in regard to the story itself, I just wasn’t that interested. While I enjoyed the strive Evie had for a normal life, I didn’t get a strong feel for her emotions. Teens are whiney boogers, but they do have feelings and I just wasn’t getting those. There were a lot of areas that just didn’t feel quite finished. Again, this was fun, so don’t count that out, and there was a bit of tension. The plot twist wasn’t much of a twist, but I did think it was pretty cool! It just didn’t move me.

 

Quotables:

“Eyes like streams of melting snow…Cold with the things she doesn’t know.” (Evie to Lend, p. 109)

“What a lovely balance. Lend shows whatever he was the world to see and you see through whatever the world wants to show you.” (Cresseda to Evie, p. 215)

 

more to come soon…

-K.

 

P.S. Song today? Hot Mess by Cobra Starship.

 

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Shamanism and Undying Love (Bound to You – A Book Review)

Bound to You
Author: Christopher Pike
Published: 2012

On Goodreads

Bound to You

My Rating: Full boltFull bolt

 

In this book comes two stories of magical suspense.

Spellbound

Cindy is getting used to being Jason’s new girlfriend after his previous one was found horribly mutilated up in the mountains just weeks ago. She’s sure that he wasn’t involved, but there’s something off about him. She can’t put her finger on it. When another classmate is found dead in a similar way, she and foreign exchange student, Bala, are determined to figure out what is happening. When they discover what horrific thing could do something so grizzly, they wish they hadn’t.

See You Later

Mark is in love with Becky. Becky has a boyfriend that isn’t Mark. Kara is determined to get Mark and Becky together. Very determined. But why? This drives Mark to not give up on how he feels for Becky. How far will he go for the girl he loves?

 

Before I get started with this review I’d like to say I’m sorry for my lateness. Work has been really taking over. Also, one of my sisters have swung by for Spring Break. I do have a couple books up for review, so yay!

 

How to begin…Just get it out there. This book was not for me. Nope. Not even a little.

The setting was beautiful and so was the story plot. That goes for both stories. They seemed so great at first and I was really intrigued. I didn’t get past that feeling. There were just parts that didn’t make sense to me. Some parts were extremely abrupt, coming out of nowhere, jarring me and others that made no sense at all.

However, there were some really great moments, much like a shooting star. Brief, but amazing and beautiful. I just wish it had been continuous.

Spellbound: About shamanism and crazy animal spirit

See You Later: Time Travel

Out of the two, See You Later was my favorite. It was sweet and I liked the direction it was going. But that was about it. It was very meh. However, the twists in each of these books was pretty good. They weren’t the kind that made your eyeballs bulge from their sockets. They were smirk worthy because they sly plot twists. I dug’em.

Shrug II

What I couldn’t really handle was the way the story was being told. It felt very bland and I just couldn’t get interested. In some instances, what went on felt incredibly ridiculous to me and unrealistic, like it didn’t happen naturally. Because of that I couldn’t believe this book which led me to be unable to be sucked into it.

The characters didn’t even keep me interested. In fact, they made me annoyed. They were very bland without any really development. Completely one track. I get that these stories stack between middle school and high school, but still. I just felt like what was important wasn’t being focused on and vice versa. There just wasn’t any real feeling there. You know what I mean. I wasn’t moved by them. I like being swayed like branches in a breeze.

 

 

I can’t say that these did very much in the way of entertaining me. That could be different for other people. Many readers on Goodreads really enjoyed them, but I’m not one of them sadly. It just wasn’t for me. I needed more.

 

Quotables:

“Seven weeks ago today, on August 2nd, seventeen-year-old Karen Holly died. The circumstance surrounding her death as reported by Jason Whitfield, her boyfriend at the time, are as follows…” (Spellbound, p. 6)

“My tribe is sunk in superstition. I have rebelled against it my entire life.” (Spellbound, Bala to Cindy, p. 44)

“You should be the hunter, not the hunted.” (Spellbound, Joni to Alex, p. 67)

“On my eight birthday, I asked my grandfather how big the world was. When you are small, he said, it is huge. But when you are a master of nature, it is like a ball you can hold in your hand.” (Spellbound, Bala to Cindy, p. 248)

“I’m such a liar. I lie to myself constantly. The truth is I didn’t know what I wanted beck then, But when I saw her, I began to get an inkling.” (See You Later, Mark, p. 257)

“It seemed the most important decisions I made were the ones where I decided to do nothing.” (See You Later, Mark, p. 320)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

P.S. Song today? Undefeated by Daughtry.

 

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Late Night Listening (Wicked Game – A Book Review)

Wicked Game (WVMP #1)
Author: Jeri Smith-Ready
Published: 2008

On Goodreads

Wicked Game - SR

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

Late night radio you can sink your teeth into!

Ciara Griffin is no longer doing cons. She’s done with that life. Now she is living a straight life as a part-time student as a Business major and now as an intern at WVMP, the Lifeblood of Rock ‘n’ Roll, a radio station. The late-night shows feature music from 1940s blues all the way up through the whatever 90s. No cookie cutter bull-hockey here. All authentic all the time. Really authentic, like the DJs that run the shows that feature each musical era as if they actually lived during those times, which makes sense because they did live during those times. They’re vampires.

So, what does Ciara do? She pulls the perfect con to save the station, the DJs, and her new job. This one she really pulls out of her butt. The radio station’s ratings goes up and it becomes the hottest thing around when she puts the vampire DJs out front for everybody to see, which includes the broody, grunge vamp, Shane McAllister, her current complicated affair. Put the truth in plain sight. And it works! But some vampires aren’t enjoying being brought into the light and it puts everybody in danger. Ciara is forced to take the con to further than ever before, otherwise

 

This was wild and edgy! Ciara is spunky and a livewire! The young woman is smart and she doesn’t do anything she doesn’t want to, and she certainly doesn’t live by life’s ordinary rules. Though, her dark past does haunt her. It makes her a perfect fit with this rag-tag, after dark radio station. While she is tough, she also has to be cautious now that she works with people who can drain her or rip her apart. Make’s the job less boring though, right?

yay

Warning! This is not your typical Twilght tale!

I’m a lover of music. I loved that all of the DJs:

  • Monroe
  • Regina
  • Noah
  • Spencer
  • Jim
  • Shane

They have their own era that they’re stuck in. And I do mean stuck. When they were turned they were frozen in the time they died. They never moved forward in time and therefore become more lost, fading away, as the times change. Each DJ shares their time through music and it keeps them connected to the world as well as their era. Each DJ carried the emotion of their music and THAT really carried the tone, making them each incredibly independent. I really loved it.

Tid Bit: Another funny about vampires in this book? They’re crazy OCD! I get major giggles about it.

At the beginning of the book there is a playlist and let me tell you, I love getting to listen to new music. I think that an author’s playlist really gives an interesting look at the author. It’s super cool! Rachel Caine also does a playlist with Morganville Vampires, another series about vampires, and personally one of my BIG FAVORITES. Playlists like this is what inspired to go ahead do a song at the end of each book review!

dancing

This is a fun little read to kick back with. It’s fast, plenty sarcastic with a side of blood (and yes, sex too). I can’t say it seriously stirs up feelings, but it does rev you up a bit with good music. It’s stress-free, too, if that makes sense. Sometimes books are super intense and really pull you in to the brink of emotional turmoil. It can put the hurt on your heart and I was glad to be along for a ride that wasn’t hurting my heart this time. Sometimes you just need good ol’ fashioned fun and nothing else. This was that and then some. *insert smirk*

 

Quotables:

“I’m a morning person and a night person. So I have to be a nap person, or else I’m a tired person.” (Ciara to Shane, p. 43)

“I am not prey.” (Ciara, p. 50)

“Work: the all-American cure for heartache.” (Ciara, p.148)

“Something can’t just turn into nothing. Can’t. Happen. But it just did.” (Ciara, p. 248)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Come as You Are by Nirvana.

 

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Supernatural Hands On Learning (Shadow Falls: Reborn – A Book Review)

Reborn (Shadow Falls: After Dark #1)
Author: C.C. Hunter
Published: 2014

On Goodreads

Reborn

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt

Vampires, chameleons, and witches, oh my! With a side of ghosts.

Della Tsang. Spunky. Flighty. And, a badass vampire.  At Shadow Falls, a private school for the supernaturally impaired, she learns how to control her powers. Though you’re not really impaired if you have kick-ass powers, are you? Didn’t think so.

Della and newcomer, Chase, come across two dead bodies in Shadow Falls. Della’s determined to find out who and what killed these innocent people and she’ll break all the rules to do it. This isn’t the only problem on Della’s plate however. Her cousin Chan is missing, her Dad has a twin that he’s never talked about, and her romantic life has taken a downward nosedive. With everything stressing her out, she’s also being haunted.

Della struggles to achieve her dreams and find some normalcy, but it just isn’t happening. In her gut, something dreadful is on the horizon and her life is on the line.

Della Tsang is spunky and driven and FULL of sass. I mean to the brim, bookworms. She is all work and barely any play as she works to solve several mysteries that are circling around her. She’s not alone. With her two best friends, two camp counselors, and an on-again-off-again shapeshifter with a deep, sexy southern drawl, Della is going to find out what is going on with all of the crazy in Shadow Falls. That’s not to say she won’t stir up a little trouble of her own along the way, of course.

Reborn

One of the elements of the book that really drew my attention was the the Supernaturals. Supernatural rules go out the window here. The traditional rules we all know and live by like the three laws of physics are tossed out the window. For example:

  • Vampires can go out in the sunlight.
  • Vampires have a heartbeat.
  • Vampires can fly (which, okay, is one of the oldest tricks that an original vampire can do, but it was strange to see).

These are only a couple of the different traits that caught me off guard, and this is only with vampires. Vampirism is considered a virus in this world and is called V1. There are shapeshifters, chameleons, fae, and so many more races of supernatural in the book. It’s really different than what I know and that’s not a bad thing. It’s just tricky to understand and treat like it’s common knowledge. Kudos to Hunter for being incredibly unique and diverse!  She did phenomenal with being sure to detail each supernatural’s powers.

Reborn

Hunter did an amazing job in juggling multiple plots, too. There’s more than one thing happening for Della in this book, so the focus splits up quite a bit, but it’s so well done. Never once was I confused when one issue transitioned to a completely different one. Each time it was smooth and done with ease, like nacho cheese.

Just like there were so many different things happening from a haunting to solving the death of two humans, there were several characters involved. Kylie (chameleon) and Miranda (witch) are Della’s best friends and then there’s Steve, the hot shapeshifter and Chase the new vamp on campus. I may have mentioned this a little already. There are many others. I haven’t seen this many characters in a book in a long time. Della’s surrounded by so much family and people that care about her. Granted, she’s pigheaded, stubborn, and feisty as all hell, but she’s caring, loving, and determined to get her dreams to come true. Very similar to Damon Salvator of The Vampire Diaries if I’m being honest. I can relate to these qualities a tad. It’s why I got such a good laugh throughout the story. Some of her worries were so ordinary and relatable. I will say this on a side-note, Della had times when she acted like a petulant little child and I wanted to smack her silly for it.

Reborn

Shadow Falls was beautiful. Very misty and green and lush. The grounds of the school were very open. This private school isn’t set up like normal ones. Students get their own cabins. The cafeteria is separate from the main school building, or so I guess. The main school building is its own operation. Everything is so very open. I really liked it. It gives a sense of freedom to these students.

There were times that certain topics were drilled into the ground to the point of no return. Not good. There is a limit to how much a topic should get drilled in. It was run over and over to the point of aggravation for me. Della would go word for word with her arguments and thoughts as if it was the only thing she could think up, which sucks. She seems pretty smart. And, the word, chauvinist, is her favorite word. I figure it out pretty quick when she said it about ten different times….

I skimmed over such strong and repetitive parts because they were the same nearly every time.  Not one bit was reflective or even changed up.

More so, I wasn’t very surprised very much by the events that unfolded. The build-up was great, but they fell flat because of how much they were drawn out. I was just left with a feeling of meh.

Would I recommend this? It’s not a terrible book. It’s fun and fast paced. Della is a quick-witted girl and strong to handle everything that gets thrown her way. However, this wasn’t very memorable. It’s book 1 in a series and I don’t know if I want to read the other ones.

Quotables:

“I don’t fit in here. But I didn’t fit in at home, either.” (Jenny to Della, p. 71)

You have to counter the bad with the good. If not, you’ll get lost in the evilness of it all. It can darken your soul and you’ll lose all joy in life.” (Holiday to Della, p. 102)

“Boobs, smiles, and ghosts…” (Della, p. 110)

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Miss Independent by Kelly Clarkson

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Bringing 2017 To A Close – My Top Ten Reads of the Year

My bookworms, my loves!

First of all, I hope you have a wonderful New Year. May it be lively and fun and renewing. Secondly, I was looking back on the year and I have compiled a list of the top ten books out of the many that I’ve read this year. The ones that I’ve loved the most and had the greatest adventures with. It was no easy feat because I enjoyed more than just ten.

It’s been a crazy year, but I wanted to take the time to share them with you. They each left an imprint on me in their own way and I’m sure you know what that feels like after reading a FANTASTIC book.

Starting at number 10…

10.
The DUFF
Author: Kody Keplinger

FullSizeRender

Blurb: Labeled a DUFF, Bianca Piper is determined to prove she’s anything but. In the midst of parental drama and friend drama, she finds a strange comfort in the arms of the boy who started calling her a DUFF, Wesley Rush.

This was such a fun book. Certainly a little more than PG-13, but still. Having seen the movie first, I was so surprised by how much I enjoyed the book. It feels like the movie and book feel like their two completely stories, but they occur in the same universe. They’re both two situations that are rather relatable.

Review here

9.
Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future
Author: A.S. King

History of the Future-Goodreads

Blurb: Glory O’Brien can see her future and it’s not bright. It’s filled with war and tragedy and she doesn’t know what else to do except write all down in hopes that it will be useful for what will come to pass.

Though the story was slow building, I was so intrigued with seeing how Glory O’Brien was seeing the future and how destructive it was. A.S. King is wild and has boundaries when it comes to writing crazy and making you believe it in a strange way. This book was so imaginative and brilliant and really had me looking at some serious issues from a new angle.

Review here

8.
The Poison Eaters
Author: Holly Black

Poison Eaters

Blurb: This collection of short stories ranges across a wide variety of supernatural beings and creatures with their own tales. Maenads, vampires, and the devil. Oh my!

I don’t read short stories very often, but these were so much fun. They were filled with faerie mischief and supernatural hardships. All of the things I enjoy and even some new things that really piqued my curiosity. Very coming-of-age and delightful.

Review here

7.
 Anna Karenina
Author: Leo Tolstoy

Anna Karenina

Blurb: It’s such a wonderful and beautiful classic that follows the affair of Anna Karenina and Count Vronsky as it spirals in a whirlwind of lust and jealousy. And then there’s Levin who is very deeply in love with Kitty, and she’d holding her heart out for Vronsky. Like many journeys for true love there is strife, tragedy, and passion.

I haven’t written up a review for this one yet. I began reading it last year and finished around the beginning of this year, so I’m counting it as one of my favorite books this year. It filled me with such intensity that I found myself audibly sighing at some parts and gasping at others. What can I say? Russian Literature does that to me. Such a magnificent classic.

6.
Unbreakable
Author: Kami Garcia

unbreakable

This one snuck up on me. Thrilling and reeking of Supernautral-esque style, I was sucked into the world of ghosts, poltergeists, voodoo, and demons just like the main character, Kennedy Waters, was after a ghost killed her mother. Rescued by twins, Jared and Lukas, she quickly learns about the Legion and how she may be a part of this demon fighting group.  I didn’t expect this to be as good as it was and I’m currently waiting on the third installment! It was riveting and gut clenching for me.

I also recommend the second book as well: Unmarked.

Review here

5.
Love & Misadventure
Author: Lang Leav

Love & Misadventure - SR

This book of poetry was my utmost favorite this year. It explored the way love opens a person up and how much of a roller coaster it is with its ups and downs, making you dizzy and ill. Its bright lights will blind you and make you feel like you’re flying. The book is so beautiful that it makes my heart swell and ache with a longing of sorts and I’m usually closed off in affairs of the heart because of how shy I am. It really had me spinning.

Review here

4.
Ocean at the End of the Lane
Author: Neil Gaiman

Ocean at the End of the Lane

Blurb: A man returns home to attend the funeral of a family member and is suddenly drawn to the pond out behind his neighbor’s home. There, on the bench at the edge, he begins to remember his encounter with Lettie Hempstock and her mom and grandmother, each who claim that this pond is actually an ocean. Mostly he remembers how a man committed suicide in a stolen car and that these three ladies helped him defeat the cruel, frightening and utterly monstrous Ursula Monkton when he was a young kid.

I can still remember the anticipation I had when I started this book. I wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into, but I jumped into it head first because Neil Gaiman has a way of sweeping me away into a completely magical world filled with all kinds of unimaginable wonders. I’ve never read anything like this. It’s utterly perfect and phenomenal.

Review here

3.
LUX (1-2)(3-4) (5)(1.5)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Lux-Consequences - entangled in romanc

Blurb: Katy Swartz moves to a new town so that she and her mother can get a fresh start. What she didn’t expect was to be saved from an oncoming truck by the boy next door, Daemon Black. That isn’t what shocks her, though. It’s that he stopped times down to the raindrops falling out of the sky. Daemon is an alien. The alien next door and by saving her he’s put in more danger than she realizes. They know they should stay away from each other, but they’re like magnets. Drawn to each other.

This is the first book series I reviewed on my blog. The book was a constant rush of adrenaline for me, keeping me on my toes with a tension that could glued me to my seat. If it wasn’t the angst between the two main characters it was the game of denial they played with each other. Then there’s the deadly situations they get themselves into because of this denial. It’s the common case of ‘I’m addicted to you, but I don’t like you because you’re going to get me killed’. We’ve all been there, right? I found that this Sci-Fi was very interesting for me because of the added elements of romance and danger that they found themselves in. Certainly on my reread list.

Review here: (1-2)(3-4)(5)(1.5)

2.
Poison Princess
Author: Kresley Cole

Poison Princess

Blurb: Evie Greene was living the life. Cheerleader, amazing boyfriend, great school. But, there’s that word. Was. All of the great things in her life started to slip and then were completely ripped from her fingertips after the Flash obliterated the planet, leaving it a desert wasteland. To make her life more difficult are the voices in her head, telling her strange things. To figure out what they mean, she’ll need help, which is where the devilishly handsome and dangerous Jackson Deveaux comes in. The boy from the bayou promises to help her, protect her, but for a price. Will she pay it?

This book. THIS. BOOK. I was swept away and completely drawn down, like an anchor to the bottom of the ocean. This series had been suggested to me by my boss. She’d been telling me how great Kresley Cole was, and I’m so glad I finally gave it a chance. This is a jaw dropping series of crazy, eye-popping magic, and that kind of love that will tear you in two, and the page to page action that will make forget to breathe. I haven’t finished the series yet. I’m waiting (rather impatiently) for the third and fourth book to arrive so that I can continue. I can’t get enough. I’m quite addicted.

Review here

1.
American Gods
Author: Neil Gaiman

AG - bustle

Blurb: Shadow Moon gets released from prison early due to the death of his wife. On the way home, he’s hired by Mr. Wednesday, a mysterious man, to help him as he visits people across the U.S. Little by little, Shadow begins to see that not everything is as it seems. Wednesday is actually gathering allies in a coming war of new gods versus old gods and Shadow is caught the middle. Not far behind these two gentleman is Shadow’s dead wife, seeking him out in hopes of finding him and seeking forgiveness before her rotting body completely falls apart.

Is there any reason this shouldn’t be numero uno? I’d heard about the TV show coming out in the spring and it sounded fascinating, so I went ahead and got the book so I could get the lowdown on the story before the show aired. Normally, I don’t care about that kind of thing. This book took me two and a half days to finish; I was so engulfed. The imagination and sheer detail put into this book is a work of art. I have this book up in my nook beside my bed, where all of my favorite books go. I recommend this to anyone and everyone who loves the fantasy and/or supernatural genre. Even those interested in mythology should read this. You’ll get sucked in so quick that when the end comes you’ll be left in a pleasant haze of fascination. Neil can do that. Even my mom says so, and moms are usually right.

Review here

There it is. My top ten. I haven’t read as much as I wanted to, but a brand New Year is about to begin. And as my personal book resolution for 2018, I want to read from at least 25 authors that I’ve never read from before. I feel like that is a solid goal and a great opportunity to try new books, (of course it’d be within range because mysteries, if you remember, make me sleepy). I also have a resolution to get more sleep, but I’m already breaking that one before the New Year. LOL.

In addition to a resolution, I’ll be working on my layout some more. I know that most blogs, if not all, have an end of the month round-up of what they’ve read. I haven’t done one because I never thought it necessary, but beginning next month I will start posting one. That way, in case you miss a post, I will be able to catch you up.

What’s your resolution for 2018? Tell me in the comments below!

And just remember to stay safe and have fun on New Year’s, loves.

HAPPY 2018!!

2018

-K.

It’s Alive!! Now Beat It With a Stick. (Frankenstein – A Book Review)

Frankenstein
Author: Mary Shelley
Published: 1818

F-D-JH

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltHalf bolt

 

Victor Frankenstein is a man of great intelligence and seeks the greatest mysteries in life as a scientist: eternal life. He goes one step further; he seeks out a way to bring life from death. When he succeeds, he isn’t excited about the revolutionary accomplishment, but utterly horrified. Under terrific duress, he tries to escape his disfigured and horrifying creature, only for more horrors to follow him wherever he goes, resulting in ultimate dread, loss and insanity.

The Gothic horror tale of Frankenstein is the first in my three story mass market.

 

Warning: There is a chance that this review is spoiler-y, though with the novel being well in-depth, maybe not that spoiler-y.

Having seen many different renditions and portrayals of the great Victor Frankenstein and his creature, I was glad to finally get to read the book. I was surprised by many things. One being that the great Dr. Frankenstein wasn’t a maniac as portrayed…

Frankenstein - imgur

NOPE.

 

It’s rather the opposite. Key word is misery. And death. There was a lot of death in this fantastic horror. And yes, there were many similarities by the great Gene Wilder and others, but still. NOPE.

I really enjoyed how this story was told. The POV was from Victor Frankenstein, but not in a present tense. You begin with letters from a man, Walton, to his sister while he’s on a ship voyage and then stumble upon Victor Frankenstein who then relays his tale to the man. You’re reminded that he’s telling you this with speckles from him such as, “Let me regain my breath” and “Let make sure I recount this correctly”. I loved that the most, I think.

Something that pickled me, and yes, I said pickled, was Igor. Igor, always known in films to be Dr. Frankenstein’s assistant in his experiment actually doesn’t exist. Henry Clerval is the closest character to compare to the disfigured and seemingly dumb character, though he isn’t those things in the book. My mom even tossed in her thoughts when I discussed it, saying, “I guess the movie producers/creators thought the great doctor was inept and gave him an assistant.”. LOL.

Frankenstein

NOPE.

The strongest element that really pulled me in was the themes. While this is an element carried in most books, it’s not one that usually captures my attention like fireworks. Fireworks were had here with the themes. As you know, I discuss what draws me the most to the books I’ve reviewed here. In some cases it’s the characters or the setting because of how detailed it is and how beautiful of a visual it can be. Other times it’s how the book made me feel and how I related to these emotions. It’s all the usual. Frankenstein was special.

One of the themes that stuck out was in how people treated the creature. I refuse to call him a monster, because he didn’t truly become a monster until forced, and even still, he is just struggling to survive and figure out the world, like all of us. Though, I believe we call it adulting these days. So if he is a monster then aren’t we all?

More so, he was deemed a monster mostly because of what he looked like, adding (to this theme of being a monster) that he was judged based on what he looks like-something people everywhere has dealt with before at one time. After all, there’s one of those golden rules: Thou shalt not judge a book by thy cover.

And that leads me to the second theme. For those who have read this tale, you know that Victor Frankenstein’s creature comes to find the doctor after his creation/birth. He tells him the tale of his journey and how he came to learn how to talk and live off the land which shows, in my opinion, an off-handed, coming of age theme. The creature is full-grown when brought out of death and to life, but he goes through the motions of figuring out who and what he is all by himself with nobody to guide him, except those he watches from afar.

A longing for love and acceptance followed this one because the creature’s yearning that came from his tale of self-exploration and abandonment. In one way or another, finding a partner in life, one of equality and that shares in your living of it, is one of our greatest goals. It could go from having a best friend to a pet to having a soulmate in life. To see the creature express this need was fascinating and intriguing. It’s all he wanted. I was ultimately sad when it was refused.

Frankenstein

While the book did have its repetitive moments, the pacing was quick, yet steady without hiccups. More so, I was consumed by the places Victor Frankenstein traveled to and how his creature sought to be like other people and be accepted by them. The novel is truly tragic for both parties. For those who enjoy horror, take a moment to read this classic. You won’t get scared out of your pants. That’s not what this kind of horror is. It’s that you are understanding another person’s horror.

 

Quotables:

“It was a strong effort of the spirit  of good, but it was ineffectual. Destiny was too potent, and her immutable laws had decreed my utter and terrible destruction.” (Victor, 39)

“Do not despair. To be friendless is indeed to be unfortunate, but the hearts of men, when unprejudiced by any obvious self-interest, are full of brotherly love and charity. Rely, therefore, on your hopes; and if these friends are good and amiable, do not despair.” (De Lacey to creature, p. 133)

“You are my creator, but I am your master; obey!” (creature to Victor, p. 167)

“…For while I destroyed his hopes, I did not satisfy my own desires. They were forever ardent and craving; still I desired love and fellowship, and I was still spurned. Was there no injustice in this? Am I thought to be the only criminal, when all humankind sinned against me?…” (Creature, p. 221)

 

On a separate note, I received something UBER awesome today and just had to share how grateful I am. I am a very big fan of Rachel Caine’s work (Morganville Vampires) and have been meaning to get my hands on The Great Library series. Well, today I received a mysterious package and the first three novels of the series were inside.

excitedBeing Becky is pretty damn accurate.

They have been added to my immediate queue line aka the back of my couch so I imagine I will be getting to them in the Spring. I’m very excited and grateful to whoever sent them and look forward to talking about them with you all, my hapless bookworms!

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

P.S. Song today? All These Things That I’ve Done by The Killers.

 

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It’s A Pond, No, It’s An Ocean (The Ocean At The End Of The Lane – A Book Review)

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane
Author: Neil Gaiman
Published: 2013

Ocean at the End of the Lane

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

Attending a funeral, a man comes back to the remnants of his childhood home and then is drawn to the house at the end of the lane where he sits at the edge of a pond. This pond is special. It isn’t a pond at all, but a a sea…an ocean. That’s what Lettie Hempstock called it and she was right. She, her mother and her grandmother, women who were mysterious and mystical had more than once told him how they came there across this ocean. That there was a world there beyond his wildest dreams and worst nightmares past it.

As the narrator sits there, he begins to remember when he nearly choked in his sleep from a coin being lodged in his throat, and an Opal miner turned up dead, and how his friend, Lettie, who promised to protect him, had to defeat a supernatural creature that came in the form of Ursula Monkton, the new housekeeper/babysitter that came from another world and was taking over his home. There was something magical and frightening in that memory, down at the end the end of the lane. As he recall every minute detail he relives a world that shouldn’t have made any sense, but it did. And as quickly as he remembered, he forgot.

I do not know how to express how much I’ve come to love Neil Gaiman and his magic. Having read American Gods, I was ready to read his other works wherever I could find it. Down at the bottom of a dusty box, in the stockroom of the bookstore, Ocean At The End Of The Lane stared up at me like a beacon and I was so excited. I can still recall jumping up and down faster than the speed of light and getting to set it on the back counter so that I could buy it on payday.

Excited

Gaiman’s riveting detail still surprises me to no end. It’s so beautiful and frightening in a single breath. The storytelling comes from a unique standpoint as well.

As I read, I became enchanted and amazed by the world that was created just between two houses. This story didn’t take place across a large setting like a country or a town. There was no road trip. More so, the world seemed so much larger than just these two places, in the memory of one man. I can’t pinpoint it precisely, except to say that I was deeply reminded of The Spiderwick Chronicles and the harrowing adventures in the small series. This was like the grown-up, more intense version.

Ocean at the end of the Lane - Spiderwick

 

One of the most important elements (to me anyway) that I’ve come to notice in Gaiman’s books, the ones that I’ve read so far, is the great detail he gives to the moon. It is such a magical and fantastical being, though it’s so far away and, maybe it’s just me, but we can’t help but want to reach out and touch or let it swallow us whole in its beautiful, pale light or even just talk to it because it’s such a great listener. I’m taken over by a bout of warmth and fuzziness with how Gaiman writes about the moon and that it’s more than just a rock in the sky. It gives light in the dark, shining a way home.

Moon

While I was deeply enveloped in the magic of the book and I do believe it was all magic, there is a question to be posed. Was this memory all in the narrator’s imagination? Was this how he coped with serious events that rocked his life, like for example, the man’s death that he and his father discovered? After all, this book takes place in the narrator’s memory and people remember things differently from other people.

 

This book was phenomenal. If only I had enough words to describe how extraordinary Gaiman’s storytelling is. All I can say is, you have to read it for yourself.

 

Quotables:

“Can’t drink the water from the sea, can you? Too salty. Like drinking life’s blood.” (Grandma Hempstock, p. 7)

“Small children believe themselves to be gods, or some of them do, and then can only be satisfied when the rest of the world goes along with their way of seeing.” (narrator, p. 51)

“Adult stories never made sense, and they were so slow to start. They made me feel like there were secrets, Masonic, mythic secrets, to adulthood.” (narrator, p. 53)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Runaway by Thriving Ivory. 
Twitter: @CheshireKat_92

Goodreads: Kat J.