Friday, 31 December 2010

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is a meme hosted by Parajunkee!




Today's question is:

What are your new years book blogging resolutions?


  • I feel as if I should comment more on othe rpeoples posts! I'm always reading reviews that are great, but forget to comment and I always feel so rude afterwards!! SO I'm going to try and improve on that!
  • Write more reviews! I've only been doing this for a month, but I'm amazed at how many reviews other people write in a month!
  • Read more! It sounds weird, but I feel like I have been spending to much time on other things! I've got like a thousand books waiting for me to read them!
  • I want to go to some book signing or readings, stuff like that! Because it's fun!
  • I'd like to start up some interviews with authors, but I'm already working on that!
  • I want to go and find a book-club, where I can gush about books face-to-face with someone! You always have a lot more to say about books if you have talked to someone about it! 
I hope I'll be able to do all these things!! What are your resolutions?

Thursday, 30 December 2010

How well read are you?

I saw this over at Bookscount and thought I'd try it out! The challenge is to bold those novels that you have read in their entirety. The BBC has predicted that most people would have read only 6 of these 100 books.


Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte

Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
The King James Bible
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
Nineteen Eighty Four (1984) – George Orwell
His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
Complete Works of Shakespeare
Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk
Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
Middlemarch – George Eliot
Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
Emma -Jane Austen
Persuasion – Jane Austen
The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – CS Lewis
The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
Winnie the Pooh – A.A. Milne
Animal Farm – George Orwell
The DaVinci Code – Dan Brown
One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
Lord of the Flies – William Golding
Atonement – Ian McEwan
Life of Pi – Yann Martel
Dune – Frank Herbert
Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
The Secret History – Donna Tartt
The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
On The Road – Jack Kerouac
Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
Moby Dick – Herman Melville
Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
Dracula – Bram Stoker
The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
Ulysses – James Joyce
The Inferno – Dante
Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
Germinal – Emile Zola
Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
Possession – AS Byatt
Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
The Color Purple – Alice Walker
The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
Charlotte’s Web – E.B. White
The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
Watership Down – Richard Adams
A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
Hamlet – William Shakespeare
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

I'm really bad at counting things up while thinking but I thought the ones I read were about 15/16 out of 100. Not too bad!!
How about you?? Copy the post, paste it into your blog, do the count and leave the link!!

Happy Birthday Rudyard


Rudyard Kipling was born On the 30th in 1865 in the beautiful city of Bombay. At that time Bombay was still part of the British Empire. He celebrated this empire and is best known for his short stories, tales and poems. He returned to England at the age of 5. Kipling has been called the 'innovator in the art of the short story'.
I guess all of us have read or seen 'The Jungle Book'. Who of us haven't seen the Disney films and still sing along to 'The Bare Neccesities'? This book is a set of short stories and was published in 1894. The short stories are fables and centre around Mowgli, who is raised in the wood by wolves and the bear Baloo and the panther Bagheera.

Some facts:
  • He got his son a commission in the army during WW1 although the boy had poor eyesight. This is why he was initially turned down but he did get a commission after all. His son died in the Battle of Loos in 1915. Kipling's poem 'My Boy Jack' was inspired by this.
  • In 1995 his poem If was voted the UK's favourite poem
  • He was the first Englishman to receive the Nobel price for Literature in 1907. He was 42 at the time and is still the youngest-ever recipient, at least to my knowledge.
  • He was a good friend of the founder of Rhodesia, Cecil Rhodes.
In some old copies of Kipling's books a swastika can be found, next to an elephant carrying a lotus-flower. I was surprised and slightly shocked by this, until I found out it had nothing to do with Nazi's. He was born in India and the Swastika is an Indian symbol for the sun, which brings good luck. The word swastika comes from the Sanskrit word svastika, meaning 'auspicious object'. Before the Nazi's came to power he had it removed because he didn't want to be associated with them, luckily.

So, let's all wish him a happy birthday, shall we?

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Review: The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne

This book was seriously one of the saddest I have ever read. The ending is truely heart-breaking and shows that John Boyne is a literary genius. The book has 224 pages and was published by Random House.

The book is set in 1942's Berlin. The main character is Bruno, a little eight-year old boy. When he comes home from school one day he is told he and his family will move to a place called 'Out-With', which turns out to be Auschwitz. When they get there he has a hard time getting settled and misses his grand-parents and friends, who they left behind in Berlin. There are no other kids and the house doesn't give enough opportunities of exploration.
One day he looks out of the window and sees lots of people in stripped pyjamas and he asks his sister who they are. She doesn't know, but according to his father, who is now Kommandant, they aren't real people, only Jews. Bruno and his sister, Gretel, are taught by a tutor, who tries to change them into hardcore Nazis. Gretel is open to this, but Bruno isn't really interested.

There is a lieutenant in the house, called Kothler. He is very violent towards the Jewish servant in the house, Pavel. Pavel helps Bruno when he hirts his knee. There is a really sweet, but tragic moment when Bruno asks him whether he needs to go see a doctor for his knee and Pavel tells him that he is a doctor.

Although his father forbids him to go out exploring the grounds Bruno does exactly that. While on one of his exploring walks he sees a fence and a boy his age on the other side. This is Shmuel, who has been taken from his parents and is forced to work in the camp. Bruno doesn't know anything about what is happening in the camp and you get the idea that Shmuel is less ignorant of what is happening. They meet every day at the same spot and become best friends.

Waiting on Wednesday: Home Fires by Gene Wolfe

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, where you can spotlight an upcoming release you can't wait for!

My must-read wil be released on the 18th of February in 2011. It's a science-fiction novel and the summary on Amazon just sounded very exciting. It's sort of a distopian, sci-fi, romantic novel.

Gene Wolfe takes us to a future North America at once familiar and utterly strange. A young man and woman, Skip and Chelle, fall in love in college and marry, but she is enlisted in the military, there is a war on, and she must serve her tour of duty before they can settle down. But the military is fighting a war with aliens in distant solar systems, and her months in the service will be years in relative time on Earth. Chelle returns to recuperate from severe injuries, after months of service, still a young woman but not necessarily the same person while Skip is in his forties and a wealthy businessman, but eager for her return. Still in love (somewhat to his surprise and delight), they go on a Caribbean cruise to resume their marriage. Their vacation rapidly becomes a complex series of challenges, not the least of which are spies, aliens, and battles with pirates who capture the ship for ransom. There is no writer in science fiction like Gene Wolfe and no science fiction novel like HOME FIRES.  Amazon
So what book are you waiting for?


Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Teaser Tuesday

This meme is hosted by Miz B at Should be Reading!
This will be my final TT of this year!!! :D
teasertuesdays31

The teaser should be two sentences, from your current read. My current read is Star Wars: Legacy of the Force - Inferno, by Troy Denning, so here I go.

Serpa looked at her over the young ones separatingthem. "You killed him?" He shook his head in dissaproval. "That doesn't seem very fair, does it? He was only  trying to keep you out of the way."
Page 174, Chapter 14

I love these Star Wars books, they're simply amazing!!!
Go over to Should beReading, to check out other TT's!

Monday, 27 December 2010

A Trillian Books: Read my Review

This is a weekly thing, where you can go over to A Trillian Books and link in one of your reviews that is connected to this weeks theme. It can be an old or a new review. This weeks theme is TV/Movie Adaptions.

 
 
My review to this theme is the one on Die Unendliche Geschichte.
I chose this one because the book is amazing, but all the movies based on it are incredibly crappy. In the first one they turned the beautiful dragon into something that looked like a wet pudel! It was a serious disgrace!!
 
Anyway, go over to Trillian's and link in!!

Lyrical Monday

This is a new weekly thing and I hope I won't forget. I tend to forget things, a lot! Anyway, every Monday/Tuesday I'll post a song whose lyrics really touch me. This week's song is Rihanna's Love the Way you Lie Part 2. I'm not a really big Rihanna fan, but this song somehow really touches me. She sings it really well and the lyrics are really amazing. Here are two of my favourite parts:

  • Even angels have their wicked schemes and you take that to new extremes But you'll always be my hero, even though you've lost your mindIn this I just recognized a really familiar theme from a lot of books. It's usually the woman who wants a man, even though she knows she shouldn't. In Wuthering Heights it's basically the same. That's one destructive relationship.
  • Then after that, shove me, in the aftermath of the destructive path that we're on,
    two psychopaths but we know that no matter how many knives we put in each other's backs

    That we'll have each other's backs, 'cause we're that luckyThere is no way that this is sweet, but there's the unyielding loyalty between two people, which is even more dangerous than love. It won't let you go, loyalty, you'll always feel it, even though you say goodbye.

     


Are there lyrics that really speak to you?

It's Monday (01)




This is my first It's Monday, so here I go. It's a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey!
It's been a really slow week because of Christmas and I've been doing lot's of baking!!
Last week I finished:
  • 'Island of Secrets' by Tammie Gibbs Clarke and also did a review on it.
  • 'Die Unendliche Geschichte' by Michael Ende. It's one of my favourite Christmas books and I have read over and over again!
This week I'm going to read:
  • 'Beowulf & other Stories, A new Introduction to Old English, Old Icelandic and Anglo-Norman Literatures' by Richard North & Joe Allard. I love Old English!!
  • 'Das Gewissen' by Jessica Durlacher. I got it for Christmas and can't wait to start!
  • 'Sunrise to Sunset' by Laurie Bowler. I'm currently travelling and stupidly left this book at home. I read the first part and can't wait to get started with this one.

So what have you read this week?? And what are you planning on reading??

Saruman, an Explanation


I'm a huge Lord of the Rings-fan, partly because of Tolkien's use of Old English to create Middle-Earth and it's people. I got this book for Christmas called Beowulf & Other Stories, A new Introduction to Old English, Old ICelandic and Anglo-Norman Literatures. The title is endlessly long, but there's also a chapter on Tolkien and they discussed the names of several characters, including Saruman's. This was just to amazing to let it pass, so I hope you find it as enlightening as I did.

So, the name Saruman the White is given by Tolkien to the highest Wizard in Middle-Earth. He is good in the beginning, but turns evil and eventually dies. His name is formed out of the Old English word searu. This word covers a number of pages in An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary by Joseph Bosworth in 1838. The basic meaning is 'cunning' or 'treacherous', but it can also be interpreted as 'weapons' in some cases.

In the dictionary Bosworth says about the coming examples: 'it is uncertain whether the word is being used with a good or a bad meaning'. This gives any reader of Tolkien a glimpse at the creation of Saruman. He has been both evil and good. A word that isn't related to searu but could have inspired Tolkien is searian, which means 'to grow sear, wither, pine away'. Examples with this word usually talk about leaves withering. This could link to Saruman withering away after being cast down by Gandalf or maybe hint at Saruman's destruction of the forest of Fangorn around Orthanc.

Giveaway at I'm a Reader, not a Writer

The amazing I'm a Reader, not a Writer is doing a giveaway because she has been blogging for 6 months already, enlightening the blogging world with amazing giveaways and interviews!



Photobucket



So hop over there and enter!!


The Jealous Queen

I have been blogging for a little more than  amonth now and I noticed that although I had wanted to focuss on all sorts of books from all over the world I have mainly talked about American and European books. So I decided to mix it up and throw in an African tale I recently read. It's called The Jealous Queen from the Ibo-people in Nigeria. I have rewritten and shortened it for you, because the original is ten pages long.

There was once a rick king called Chuckwudi. He had hundreds upon hundreds of servants and was loved by his people, because he was a just and kind ruler. He was getting older and was worried about who would be his heir, because he had only 7 daughters and no sons. So he said to his wife that he would have to get himself a second wife, in the hope that she would give him his much desired son. The Queen Nwakaego however was pregnant, so he waited until the baby was born in case it was a son. Nwakaego however bore him another girl.

The king became so mad, that he locked himself up in his room for three days and didn't eat or drink. On the third day he told his wife he would marry again. Nwakaego was heart-broken and gave him a condition. The other woman shouldn't live in the house and shouldn't be seen as a Queen, otherwise Nwakaego would kill herself. She gave him a day to consider and finally, he accepted. A little house was built behind the palace and the search for a bride began.

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Review: Die Unendliche Geschichte


Die Unendliche Geschichte is a German book for children, written by Michael Ende. My father read this book to me and I loved it.

The main character is Bastian Balthasar Bux, a little 10/11-year old boy that is being harassed in school. His mother died in an accident and his father never really got over it. He works a lot and Bastian is neglected as a consequence to that. While running from other kids he hides in an old bookstore, where he finds a book called 'The Neverending Story'. He steals it and decided to hide in the school attic for as long as possible.
The book is about the land of Phantasia, that is ruled by the Childlike Empress. There is something terrible wrong though, because the country is slowly disappearing. Where once was land Nothing remains and I mean Nothing. Not just plan ground, but a Nothing that draws everything that looks at it into it. To find the cause and stop this the Childlike Empress sends the green-skinned Indian boy Atreju. Atreju is of Bastian's age and has everything Bastian wished he had.

Bastian finds he can influence the way the story goes and give Atreju hints. HE can see that Atreju will never be able to save Phantasia, only he himself can, because he knows the new name of the Empress. When she gets a new namePhantasia will resotre itself. Bastian however thinks that the Empress will think he's to low to help, so she has to trick him into saying her name: Moonchild.

As a result Bastian enters Phantasia and the Empress gives him a mission. Through his wishes he is supposed to recreate Phantasia the way he wants it to be. His wishes are fulfilled by the Empress' amulet, Auryn. He now wishes to be everything he always wanted to be, strong, powerful and wise. Something the Empress didn't tell him was that the amulet takes a memory of his "real" life everytime he wishes something. When he realizes this it is almost to late. Will he be able to get home? To see his father again?

I absolutely loved this book when my father read it to me. Not only the concept of a fantasy-world, but the entire story. My copy had an amazing way of making a difference between the story and the book that is read. The "real" story was in green print and the books story in red.

The book's central story is a story about a boy that is harassed and bullied and has generally given up on life. You feel so sorry for him and I think everyone knows how it feels to be able to compeltely escape into a book. It was almost spooky though how the story comes into his life. At a certain point there are stuffed versions of animals he has just read about that weren't there before. And when he looks into an old mirror Atreju in the book can see him.

The Childlike Empress is a very strange character. She is this beautiful and powerful young girl that rules this entire empire, but has to be "rejuvenated" by this boy in the modern world. I have come to believe that this is Michael Ende's way of showing that fantasy is dependent of the person. Imagine there was a country where all your creations of the mind went to, all the little people you came up with. They would "die" once you stopped thinking or caring about them. If no child would have a fantasy world or creation left, would fantasy die?

Michael Ende sometimes said this himself. He believed that we had everything on the exterior, but were poor on the inside. When we grow up and enter this world of facts and hard data we can only survive if we keep the child inside ourselves alive. He dedicates all his books to the Eternal Chidlike within every human and this is why his boks cannot be classified as children's books. I completely agree with this. I have read and reread this book so many times, seperately and together with my father and both of us always got enchanted by this world.

I think fantasy is something crucial to human survival. This might sound pompous or melodramatic, but what would happen if no one would ever be able to fantasize about things? Life would be so dull and grey if you can't imagine things. Imagine no one being able to "see" the old Greeks in their temples, or to "see and smell" the banquets or fights when walking in the ruins of a castle. No more books would be written, no more children's stories.

My favourite character from this book is probably the dragon Fuchur. He is a dragon of luck and resembles the Chinese drawings of dragons, with their long smooth, snake-like bodies. He is just such a symbol of hope and happiness that I never forgot. In my mind I always compare dragons in movies to Fuchur. He is such a help to Atreju and is just one of the most convincing characters in the book. Dragons are either portrayed as these fire-spitting beasts that cannot be controlled, only killed, or old, whithered creatures.

Movies about this book have always failed. I watched two versions and walked away crying both times, because they're simply rubbish and ruin the story. There are some books that are called non-filmable and until this day this books has proven to be one of them. I think it could be filmed, but the script would have to be written by someone who loves the story and understands it properly and knows it's not only for children.

I give this book ...



5 Universes!

Have you read this book? How do you feel about fantasy?

Short Story Sunday

So, here's my weekly short story. In this one I'm introducing Inspector X, who is a typical inspector. This one is called 'Murder is in the eye of the beholder'.

As Inspector X entered the crime scene two things became clear. The victim was certainly dead and the murderer was present. Nobody had been allowed to leave or enter the crime scene. e looked around, as the man in charge I was appointed to name a murderer within short time. There were five people selected out of all the party guests. Her husband, her affaire, the affairs wife, the victims son and the host of the party. He immediately got rid of the host. Nobody would be as stupid as to kill someone on their own party. The husband seemed heartbroken and was, until half an hour ago, unaware of the affaire. He let him go, so the man could receive some help. He was a poor sight. Her affaire, a youngish, rich and married man, had none reason whatsoever to kill her, because that would have brought light to his affaire. He was also released and he ran for a taxi, probably visiting his lawyer for a divorce procedure. That left the affaire’s wife and her son.

Both looked furious. The wife had just found out about the affaire and had been calling her lawyer. It had clearly been an up-class party. The son had remained silent through the entire procedure. He had told the police about the affaire, what meant he had known before anyone else. Inspector X sat down, asked for a coffee and started thinking the matter over. Soon his thoughts were disturbed by a colleague, who came to bring him the cause of death. It was an overdose of some kind of pills. It had been mixed with her wine.

‘Maybe it was suicide!’ The colleague expected a treat for telling me this.
‘ I wish you wouldn’t have said that. Now I have to consider it. Bring me the wife and the son.’
‘The wife is dead, sir!’
‘I mean the affaire’s wife, stupid!’

Both came, both still angry. The son came up to me. He was five.
He whispered: ’I did it. She hurt me, my father, everyone who knew her. And she didn’t listen to me. I found the pills in her purse and mashed them. I asked her to talk to me about him. She didn’t even answer me. I put the pills in her glass and she drank it.’
X looked at the little boy. He seemed aware of his deed.
‘Am I going to jail, sir?’ He was dead serious and serious wanted a serious answer.
‘Did you kill her, because you wanted her to die?’
The little boy thought for a while, let the words sink.
‘No, I wanted her to talk to me!’
X turned around and walked up to my colleague.
‘It was suicide. Case closed.’

I hope you liked it! Leave a comment, good or bad!! Advice is always appreciated!!

Friday, 24 December 2010

Giveaway Winners

So, the winners of the Midwinter's Eve Giveaway are:

Mary , who won Little Women
Asha, who won Favourite Wife
Aik, who won Peril at End House

Thank you to everyone who participated! I will contact the winners and send them the books!

Have a lovely Christmas everybody!

Follow Friday & Book Blogger Hop

It's this time of the week again!!
Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee. This week's question:


What are your plans for this fabulous day?

Well, I went to the hairdresser today, who cut of most of my hair! That was my biggest plan. Tonight we're going to the children'ss ervice in our church because my sister is singing and I can't wait. I always look forward to that because we sing 'Angels from the Realms of Glory' and it simply sounds amazing.
After that we're going to unwrap presents and I hope I get some good books!

Unfortunately there is no Book Blogger Hop for the next two weeks! :(

Book Blogger Hop
I wish everyone a Happy Christmas!!!

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Jane Austen renewed

This is just a quickie before I go to bed!

YouTube is an amazing thing that makes it possible to see things from a long time ago. It also makes it possible to favourite these and that way see them again later. While browsing through my Favourites I stumbled upon this one. I guess all of us, who have read and liked Jane Austen, have wanted to be able to write in her style as it seems so elegant and sophisticated. Emma Thompson did exactly that in her acceptance speech when receiving an award for 'Sense & Sensibility'. It is hilarious!




I wish you all a good night, or a good morning/afternoon/evening wherever you are!

New Moodboards



I already showed some of my moodboards/scrapbooks earlier, but I made new ones and I'll probably continue doing so until I'm unable to use the computer.

The one on the left focusses on ruins, because I love ruins. They are great things in fiction, allowing the writer to do endless flashbacks, let his portagnoist/s be hanuted by spirits form the past, show his or her descriptive style or simply baffle us with knowledge of architecture.
My favourite is probably the one on the top left. It's from India and is called the Daulatabad Fort. I have never been to India, but have admired its architecture for a long time. This particular fort, according to ancient Indian texts, is a mixed fort , Misra durg in Indian. It combines the qualities of Giridurg, a mountain fort, Dev durg, God's fort, and Bhumi durg, a land fort. In short, it was the safest place to be.
I love how every picture has a story, but it would be really boring if I told all of them.

The other board I made is about water/ice and light. It has a lot of details and I basically cut up a lot of pictures and added the bits I liked the most. If you can see your own holiday-photo I'm really sorry I didn't ask for copyright, but that would have taken me longer than making this thing. What annoyes me in books sometimes is the lack of some authors to be able to write what they see. What I mean by this is that I can't stand it if they fail to describe light. It is all around you. I'm not saying I want them to descibe things the way I see them, but there re so many aspects to light that you could write a bit more than: 'The yellow light of the morning sun shone through the window.'

My favourite bit is probably the lighting on the left. It was an amazing picture in total, but too big to put onto the board. The sky was dark, almost black and the lightning illuminated it in a purpelish light. It was so bright you couldn't see anything else. I always loved lightening. I'd sleep in my granparents living-room on stormy nights, pull the big, comfy chair in front of the window and watch. I remember thinking they were like snakes crawling across the sky, dissappearing into infinity.

I know lots of people are scared of lightening and thunder, especially when young, but they are beautiful!How do you feel about lightening?

Soundtracks

I have noticed that for me a soundtrack is crucial to being impressed by a movie. Seeing Lord of the Rings without the soundtrack would be awful and the same counts for Star Wars. Did you know that they actually tested the first Star Wars film on an audience without music and they didn't like it? And after they had added the soundtrack they loved it! So what is it with music and soundtracks?

To stick with Star Wars and LOTR, which have undoubtedly the best soundtracks around, imagine the Lighting of the Beacons in the third movie without music? I added the music below, so just listen to it while imagining the scene without music!



The Giveaway is CLOSED

As the title says the Midwinter's Eve Giveaway is now closed!
I'll announce the winner's tomorrow! Thanks to everyone for participating!!
Merry Christmas!!!!

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

The New Yorker Review of Books


For anyone who has never ever read this magazine but loves books, you should really get yourself a copy. Not all of the articles will be to your taste, you will read about books that make you  want to puke, but there are some genuinely good articles in there.
I got myself the December issue today and it was love from the first page on. On the first page, really just the backside to the cover, they wrote a out a book which is called 'Letting Stories Breathe' by Arthur W. Frank. I'm all for letting stories breathe, so I read on.

"This is a powerful book. Arthur Frank already has a reputation as a sophisticated and sensitive interpreter of how stories shape human experience, and Letting Stories Breathe will cement his legacy...His writing is consistently clear and concise as well as, at times, moving and deeply personal, conveying in its style and language the very ethical commitments that are central to the argument of book"
Joseph E. Davis

Doesn't that just sound amazing? A book about the impact of stories!
This book might not be everyone's taste, but there is plenty for everyone. Last time I bought an issue there was an article on writer Pearl Buck. Although I had never heard of her and never read anything about or by her, at the end of the article I felt a sif I had a thorough view of her writing-style.

This magazine makes me want to go out and by books, which is a good thing. And it makes you look very sophisticated to walk around with a paper from the NY Times, which is another good thing. When on holiday in France I sometimes get a magazine called Lettre, I believe. This one is also about books, but deals in themes. So sometimes it's about classics and it'll have little chapters on Homer, Ceasar and Cicero.

Is there a paper or magazine about books you really like?

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Teaser Tuesday

This is a meme hosted by Should Be Reading.

teasertuesdays31


  • Grab your current read
  • Open at a random page
  • Share 2 teaser sentences
  • Don't include spoilers (!)
  • Share title and author
My sister gave me the best early Christmas present yesterday, a collection of Lord Byron's work. Because it is so fabulous I have made a ton of pictures. But because I'm i nthe Netherlands my camera won't load them unto the computer!! :(

Here's the teaser from The Siege of Corinth by Lord Byron

On dun Cithaeron's ridge appears
the gleam of twice ten thousand spears;

And downward to the Isthmian plain,
From shore to shore of either main.

So, what's your teaser?

Midwinter's Eve Giveaway

The Midwinter's Eve Giveaway is a Hop hosted by the amazing I Am A Reader, Not A Writer. Go over here to see all the details on what this Hop is about!



MY FIRST EVER GIVEAWAY!! That many more may follow!!
I will give away three books to three people I will pick randomly! I must warn you, I can only ship inside the UK, Channel Islands excluded. So if you do not live in the UK but know someone there who wouldn't mind receiving a packet for you than that is great and I'll gladly send the book there in case you're the winner! I
The books I will giveaway are:
  • Little Women by Louisa M. Alcott, published by Penguin
  • Peril at End House by Agatha Christie, published by Fontana
  • Favourite Wife by May Edginton, published by Collins White Circle

      

As you can see these are more classics, but I hope you'll like them!
What to do if you want to enter:
  1. Be a follower
  2. Leave a comment with your email, the book you'd prefer and what the first book is you remember reading.
  3. Visit other blogs that participate in the Hop!
On Thursday I'll announce the winners, the book they got and how I'll get in touch with them, so please check back!

Try and visit at least 5 of the sites below, share the Christmas love and enter the giveaways!

Monday, 20 December 2010

Review: 'Island of Secrets' by Tammie Clarke Gibbs

This book was sent to me by Tammie to review and once I started reading I finished it in 3 days. Although the plot is terribly difficult it certainly grabs your attention immediately.
Island of Secrets
Lila is our heroine and we meet her for the first time when she's on a ferry to Leigh Island. She has taken her friend's identity as Cassie, at her friend's request, and is out to investigate the rumors about ghosts on the island. She doesn't want to stay, but is picked by the Island's boss, the mysterious Shane Alexander, to be the only journalist allowed on the island. 



While being given a ride in a carriage by a butler, she presumes, she finds a purse with an invite to a Masquerade ball with her name on it, a note telling her to stay away and a big ruby ring that she slips on her finger. When arriving at the hotel she finds she is surrounded by what she thinks are idiots, that dress like their from another century. Shane is there as well, but he behaves very strangely.

She wakes up in a room and finds Shane banging on the door. The room she has been sleeping in was locked for 300 years and she has the key. She has come back to the modern time and realizes that she was in 1796 last night. The Shane that woke her up is the spitting image of the one in 1796 and Lila is completely confused, while he still thinks she is Cassie.

That evening Shane tells her about the link between the iiland and his family, which started in 1700. He finds the ring after she has fallen asleep and slips it onto her finger, after which she disappears from his arms. He looks for her frantically in the present day, while she is 1796. There Uncle Gustavas, who was apparently the one who invited her to the island, got murdered and she was lured to his room where he lay dead by a woman in white. 1796' Shane found her with strangle-marks on her neck. Will her murderer try again? Will she fall in love with Shane? Will she ever get back to the present and if yes, will she still want to go back?


I wouldn't want to give away more of the plot, because the plot makes this book! It is so complex. Sometimes I found it hard to separate present from past, but that was mainly because some events in past and present coincide and because all of the characters in 1796 are also there in the present day. Lila is a very like-able character. She is a modern, independent woman, that is suddenly in this new world where everybody either hates her or loves her.

Gibbs writes in a very readable style. She is descriptive and detailed at the right places. She has a real talent for describing landscapes, especially when talking about the cliffs. This is great for the reader, because it gives you the ability to “see” the story. The scenes in which Lila is haunted by the woman in white and her search for her murdered are intense moments that almost change this novel into a detective/thriller.Time-novels are a very difficult thing to finish and give a good ending, but Gibbs has done a remarkable job in giving the story a fitting end.


The Shane in 1796 is incredibly mysterious and for a while you suspect him of wanting Lila dead. I don't want to tell to much of course, but their love is described really well by Gibbs. She gets into the emotional and physical feeling, without making it pornographic.

The characters I really liked in 1796 was Amelia.
Amelia is a really warm personality and the scene in which she gives birth is incredibly sweet and, I think, a very important scene for Lila. Amelia becomes a good friend to Lila and you almost miss her in the present.

There were two characters I really liked in the present-day and that were Caroline and Montague.
Caroline is a genuinely sweet and independent person, who helps Shane calm down when things get heated and hides with him when the police come looking for Lila. She is in love with Montague and I really liked this, because the author didn't fall into the trap of making every woman fall in love with the main man.

I really like Montague because his character is so different from the Montague in 1796. In 1796 it is hard to sympathize with him, but in the present he's really likeable. He is the one who keeps Shane out of trouble.

First sentence: 'I pick you.' (This is the first sentence form the first chapter, not the prologue.)

I give this book ...
       /



3/4 Universes!!

If you liked the Time-traveler's Wife, you'll most likely also enjoy this book! The only thing that kept me from giving it the complete four universes was that it had me confused some times as to what just happened.

Do you like time-travelling stories? Would you read this one?

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Short Story Sunday

Alright, so this is going to be a sort of weekly thing and will stop as soon as I run out of my short stories! All these stories are written by me and they're certainly no master-pieces, but I think they're kind of fun and I'd love some feedback, even if it's negative!

Alright, so here's the first one. It's called Blood is thicker

The situation had escalated, a lot. I faced the two sisters as if on trial. One of them was my wife, but that didn’t seem to cloud her judgement. I must say it was my fault, I shouldn’t have tried to sleep with my sister-in-law. In my defence, I only responded to her invitation. She was the handsome one of the sisters, but my wife was the smart one. If I was offered both, I thought to myself, why not?
‘I would never want to sleep with my sisters wife!’ I sighed. Whatever I said, my wife wouldn’t believe it and her sister would deny it. All I could do, was to look apologetic.
‘I am truly sorry. It was one big misunderstanding.’
‘Misunderstanding? You undressed in my bedroom and wanted to sleep with me!’
‘You said you wanted to spend the night together. You are very persuasive, you know.’
The sisters looked at each other. My wife loved me, that was for sure. It would take some alone-time with a shrink and a lot of presents for her to get over it, but in the end, I was sure, she would cope.
‘Honey, look at me. You know I only love you!’
She didn’t respond, didn’t even seem to be bothered by my words. That disturbed me, more then the nod her sister gave her. She disappeared into the kitchen and came back with a knife, wearing plastic gloves. I allowed myself to breathe again. She went to stand behind me, so I couldn’t see her. I was sure she was going to cut the rope they had used to tie me up. When they tied me up I had thought I was the luckiest man in the world. When I found out the chains weren’t meant for pleasure, I had started to worry. Now her sister came up to me and smiled.
‘I never trusted you. I had told my sister not to marry you, if you wouldn’t have been that rich. Now she’ll inherit all and we’ll live happy ever after.’
I felt a sting and something warm spread across my chest. Everything became dizzy. My chains were cut, I reached up to my neck and saw my hands were covered with blood.
‘Why?’ I asked my wife, using my last breath.
‘You are both guilty, but she is my sister. And I’d never shed my own blood!
I saw how she reached for the phone and gave the knife to her sister, who touched it barehanded.
‘Is this the police? My sister killed my husband! You have to help me!’
She hung up and smiled.

So, I hope you liked it! Have a nice Sunday!

Friday, 17 December 2010

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is a meme hosted by Parajunkee!




What did you study in college, or are currently studying and did it lead to your current 9 to 5 or are you doing something totally different?

I haven't gone to college yet, but will be applying next year for a English literature bachelor. I really hope this will then lead to me being able to write books or become a critic. So this blog is basically me practising and looking around in the "world of books". And I have enjoyed myself so much the last month!

How about you?

Book Blogger Hop (03)

It is time for the Book Blogger Hop again!! Hosted by the amazing Crazy for Books!

Book Blogger Hop

The Question is:
What do you consider the most important in a story: the plot or the characters?

Of course both matter, but I think the plot is the most important. If the story-line is wrong, if things happen that are completely uncalled for or when the story line is so cliche you could finish it yourself the book just isn't fun to read. You want to be challenged by a story, you want to feel the need to finish it just so you can find out what happens. If the plot is good, than the characters are automatically given extra depth.

It is compeltely the other way round in movies. I know we don't discuss movies, but I felt I should add that. If the story line is crap, but the actors are amazing than the movie is watchable, because the actors can bring in their own expertise to make the characters credible. Characters from a book cannot do that!!

So what's your answer?

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Thursday's Name Game

This is a "not yet" meme by The Garden of Books. You basically pick a name from a character in a novel and add some facts!

So, I chose:
Name: Dorothea
Gender: Female
Character from: 'Middlemarch' by George Elliot

Meaning:
Dorothea comes from the Greek and means 'gift of God' and is a is a variant of Doroty.

Personal experience:
I knew one girl who was named Dorothea, but I haven't seen her in ages.

Place names:
Dorotheenstadt (state of Berlin) – named after Duchess Sophia Dorothea of Holstein

Famous real-life people named Dorothea:
  • Dorothea Lange, an American documentary photographer
  • Dorothea Lynde Dix, an American activist for the indigent insane

Dorothea in song, film, etc. :
  • Dorothea's Revenge (1974)
  • Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz
  • Dorothea, an album by Laïs in 2000

Happy Birthday Jane


Today is Jane Austen's birthday. She was born on the 16 December of 1775 in Hampshire, England. She went on to write classics such as pride & Prejudice, Sense & Sensibility and Northanger Abbey. She published these works anonymously, which meant that she didn't get any renown in her own time.
The most interesting fact I found today was that in her last six months she started a novel called 'The Brothers/ Sanditon'. When she died she had come halfway of Chapter 12. It was finished by other people, including her niece Anne and published several times under the title Sanditon. I didn't know about this book and I'm definitely going to try and find it on the Internet!

Some random facts:
  • Jane Austen is buried in Winchester Cathedral.
  • Because she posted anonymously they didn't know she was the author until after her death.
  • Pride & Prejudice had a different title first, 'First Impressions'. This title makes just as much sense as the one we know, because it links directly to the first impression Lizzie had of Mr. Darcy.
  • Jane had her heart broken in 1795 by Tom Lefroy when his family opposed against the match. They wanted their son to marry a richer woman.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Midwinter's Eve Giveaway Hop

I just wanted to let you know I will be participating in the Midwinter's Eve Goveaway Hop!!
Unfortunatly I can only ship inside of the UK!! I might be able to go as far as the rest of Europe, but I'll keep you updated on that! The hop will run from 12:01 AM on December 21st to 11:59 PM on December 22nd. 

The Hop is hosted by I'm Not A Reader and head over here to go to the Hops' page.
I'm really exited and I hope you'll join in on the fun!! I'm still picking out the books I will give away.

I'm exited!!!

Waiting on Wednesday

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So, this is a meme hosted by Breaking the Spine and you simply write about a book release your anticipating!
 
Ok, so I can't wait until the release of 'The Architect of Flowers' by William Lychack. Lychack is an American writer and this is his second book. His first was a novel called The Wasp Eater. This book has gotten a lot of praise as has the writer.


The stories in William Lychack’s dazzling new collection, The Architect of Flowers, explore the inevitable distance between people in loving relationships. With minute and perfect details, Lychack observes the overlooked moments of everyday life—the small failings between parents and children, the long-held secrets in married life—to find hope in the darkest of situations.   A small town policeman steels himself to shoot a family’s injured dog; an old woman secretly trains a crow to steal for her; a pregnant woman brings home a box full of chicks to raise in the yard; a hybridizer’s wife discovers the perfect lie to bring her family magically together again. Lychack’s characters yearn to re-enchant the world, to turn the ordinary and profane into the sacred and beautiful again, to make beauty serve as an antidote to grief. From ghostwriter to ghost runners to ghosts in a chapel, these stories are extraordinary portraits of life’s tender humiliations as well as its sharp rude jolts.
Summary from Goodreads.
So I got this advanced reading copy from NetGalley and it will be published in March 2011.  The book contains a bunch of short stories and what I've read so far is really good! I'll be posting a review and a Q&A with the author in March. This way the review can be part of the publication-machine.

What book are you waiting for?

Sunday, 12 December 2010

The 2nds Challenge

So I love a challenge that encourages me to read as many books as possible! And during the Blog Hop (thank God or that meme) I found this one: The Seconds Challenge hosted by A Few More Pages. Here are the guidelines:
Guidelines for the 2nds Challenge 2011

1. Anyone can join. You don't need a blog to participate. If you're not a blogger, leave your information in the comments.

2. There are four levels to choose from in this challenge:
  • Just a spoonful - Read 3 books that are 2nd in a series or the second time you've read the author. 
  • A few more bites - Read 6 books that are 2nd in a series or the second time you've read the author.
  • A full plate - Read 12 books that are 2nd in a series or the second time you've read the author.
  • All you can eat - Read 20 books (or more) that are 2nd in a series or the second time you've read the author.
You can list your books in advance or just put them in a wrap up post. If you list them, feel free to change them as the mood takes you. Any genre counts.
3. You can join anytime between now and December 31, 2011. Don't start reading until January.

4. If you're a blogger, write up a sign-up post that includes the URL to this post so that others can join in. Feel free to use the button above. When you sign up in the Linky, put the direct link to your 2nds Challenge sign-up post.

I of  course decided to go for the All you can Eat!
My list:

  1. The Angel's Game - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  2. The Two Towers - J.R.R. Tolkien (I know, it was meant to be one big book)
  3. Sunrise to Sunset by Laurie Bowler
  4. De Geheimen van het Donkere Woud by Tonke Dragt (Dutch teen-book about knights! First one was amazing!)
  5. The Heritage of Bjorndal by Trygve Gulbranssen (The first one was amazing!)
  6. Der Ring des Sarazenen by Wolfgang Hohlbein
  7. Grass for his Pillow by Lian Hearn (weirdly enough I have read the first, the third and the final book, but always missed out on the second!)
  8. Het helse Paradijs by Thea Beckman
  9. El reino del dragón de oro by Isabel Allende (I'll be reading it in German)
  10. Payment in Blood by Elizabeth George
  11. A Year anda  Day by Monica Furlong
  12. Zoektocht in Kantoren by Jan Terlouw
  13. Streets of Shadows by Michael Reaves
  14. Face of Death by Cody Mcfayen (I just read and reviewed the third one, unaware that it was part of a series. )
As you can see I haven't yet come to 20, but I'll keep this updated on the soon-to-come Challenges page!

Was there ever a second book in a series that you loved even more than the first?

In My Mailbox (02)

This is a meme by The Story Siren.

This week I got some amazing books. And I can't wait to read them all!!!
To review:
  • Island of Secrets by Tammie Clarke Gibbs
  • Okay for now by Gary D. Schmidt
  • Rodin's Debutante by Ward Just
  • The architect of Flowers by William Lychaeck
  • Trust me Series by Amy Romine
  • Sunrise to Sunset by Laurie Bowler
  • The Cantherbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
  • In the name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
Succesful week! I'm really happy with all the books I got, especially with 'Sunrise to Sunset' (go here for the review of the prequel) and In the name of the Rose. My dad is a very big fan of Umberto Eco and that is mainly the reason I'm reading it now!

I get my books from NetGalley, other peoples bookshelves and bookstores mainly!

So what was in your Mailbox this week?

Saturday, 11 December 2010

Review: 'The Darker Side' by Cody McFadyen

The Darker Side (Smoky Barret, #3)This book isn't exactly new, it was published May last year, but I just got my hands on it last week. So, this book is called 'The Darker Side' by Cofy McFadyen.


The protagonist of this story is Smoky Barret, a FBI Special Agent with a tragic past. Two years ago her husband and daughter were murdered by a serial-killer with a personal grudge. He raped her and cut up her face. Smoky however survived and is once again one of the best Special Agents the FBI has.
That is exactly why she's chosen to investigate a very public murder. A young woman, who is a man, has been murdered on a plane, during a flight. She was stabbedin her right side with something sharp and a small cross with the number 137 was placed inside her body. She turns out to be the son of a politician, who's planning on running for office. Smoky has to try and solve the case, without alerting people to this shocking fact.

Not being interested in politics Smoky focusses on finding the murderer, together with her team. They find a second victim and they realise that the number on the crosses is for the number of victims. Smoky realizes what the killer kills for: sins. Thiss cares her, because she herself has done something which the killer could and would consider a sin. Smoky starts to despare as they can't find any clues, leading them to the killer.

Then the killer reveals himself to them, by uploading videos of his victims in their last hour onto Youtube-like sites. They cannot see his face, but are getting closer and closer to revealing his identity. Will Smoky and her team be able to find him before he kills more people?

Friday, 10 December 2010

Follow Friday & Book Blogger Hop

So, Follow Friday is a meme hosted by Parajunkee!





Do you have an under-noticed author that you think we should all know about?


I don't really think that this author is under-noticed, but I loved Marisha Pessl book 'Special Topics in Calamity Physics'. This book was a bestseller in 2006, but somehow I feel as if she didn't get enough attention. The book is amazing and really fun to read. Pessl has an amazing style of writing, which makes you want to read the book all at once!

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Book Blogger Hop is a meme hosted by Crazy-For-Books

Book Blogger Hop

What is the thing you like most about reading book blogs?  Is it the reviews, author guest posts, articles, giveaways, or something else entirely?

What I love about reading book blogs is reading all the different opinions and interpretations of books! It is jsut amazing and inspiring to see you're not the only one who can be completely obsessed about a book.
It is also great to see how dedicated people are to their blogs and to sharing it with people. And the reviews are always great to read, because it also helps me improve my own reviews.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

'Heart' by The Pretty Reckless


I thought about it and lyrics are also words. And after having thought about ti a little bit more I realised that good (!) lyrics are just like poems on music.

I really love Taylor Momsen's voice and this song is simply beautiful. Unfortunatly there are no studio-demos on Youtube and I'm not going to put up a link to an illegal site on my blog, even though I might have used  it myself.
Anyway, here are the lyrics:

Never wanted to feel
Never wanted you to steal my heart
Never wanted to know
Never wanted to show I'm weak

I'm falling all over myself
Trying to be someone else
I wish you would dare to walk me home
So I wouldn't have to feel alone

Always wanted to be
Always wanted you to see my heart
Always wanted your love
Always wanted but never was

I"m falling all over myself
Trying to be someone else
I wish you would dare to walk me home
So I wouldn't have to feel alone

I'm falling all over myself
Dying to be someone else
I wish you would dare to walk me home
I don't wanna fight the world alone

Never told you before
Never loved you more

I'm falling all over myself
Trying to be someone else
I wish you would dare to walk me home
So I wouldn't have to feel alone

I'm falling all over myself
Dying to be someone else
I wish you would dare to walk me home
I don't wanna fight the world alone
I don't wanna fight the world alone
I don't wanna fight the world alone

These lyrics are just perfect to listen to if your relationship is difficult.
What I like about some songs is that the title isn't mentioned in the lyrics itself. I think this shows that the song has a theme. You probably know these songs that are about a heart-break and that single word is repeated over and over again in the refrain, as if that shows emotion.
What I love about this song is that the lyrics are so simple and, in my opinion, realistic. I guess most people know this feeling where you want to be someone else in the hope to impress this one other person.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Breaking the Spine. What you basically do is you post about a book that highlights an upcoming release.



My choice: Rodin's Debutante
by Ward Just
Pub Date: 03/01/2011
Genre: Fiction/Adult: literary
By Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Tommy Ogden, a Gatsbyesque character living in a mansion outside robber-baron-era Chicago, declines to give his wife the money to commission a bust of herself from the French master Rodin and announces instead his intention to endow a boys' school. Ogden's decision reverberates years later in the life of Lee Goodell, whose coming of age is at the heart of Ward Just's emotionally potent new novel. 
Lee's life decisions—to become a sculptor, to sojourn in the mean streets of the South Side, to marry into the haute-intellectual culture of Hyde Park—play out against the crude glamour of midcentury Chicago.

Just's signature skill of conveying emotional heft with few words is put into play as Lee confronts the meaning of his four years at Ogden Hall School under the purview, in the school library, of a bust known as Rodin's Debutante. And, especially, as he meets again a childhood friend, the victim of a brutal sexual assault of which she has no memory. It was a crime marking the end of Lee's boyhood and the beginning of his understanding—so powerfully under the surface of Just's masterly story—that how and what we remember add up to nothing less than our very lives.    

I'm really exited for this book and the best thing is that I just received an advanced reading-copy to review!

What's your pick?

Review: 'Moon Rising' by Laurie Bowler

I got this book sent to me a week ago and finished it in three days.
This book is by Laurie Bowler, has a 133 pages and 27 chapters.

Marinette, Nessy, has escaped her Maker, Hervidor, King of the Undead and leader of the terrible Tellis coven. She runs into Charles and his coven and feels an immediate attraction to him. Although she doesn't want to stay, she is convinced to stay by Charles and By Herqacio, Hera, leader of the Gulons, a feline animal that is the vampires sworn enemy.

Hervidor comes to visit Charles in his search for Nessy and Charles hides her in a cottage. There their eternal bond is deepened even more. Nessy is a very special vampire because she is still half-human. This is because she has never ever killed a human out of blood-thirst. Nessy has terrible nightmares, in which she relives the night she was turned 300 years ago. In these dreams there is also a man in the shadows, who simply watchesher suffer. It turns out Hervidor is also Charles creator.

After Hervidor has passed Hera ivited Nessy for a Gulon-dance. He reveals to her that her old house is in the gUlon-territory and that her father was the Gulon-leader, which makes Nessy a Gulon as wel. She doesn't know what would happen to her DNA if she turned into a Gulon, but these thoughts are interupted by the news that Hervidor is coming abch, after a hint that Nessy is still around. She decides to try and turn into a Gulon, hoping this will change her traceable smell.

Nessy is as strong and powerful as Hera as a Gulon and joins in when the Gulons go chasing a vampire. It turns out to be Tellis vampire and Nessy kills her by changing back to her human self and surprising the vampire by turning back into a Gulon. 
Charles has decided to organise a dance in "honour" of Hervidor and Nessy attendes. Will she survive this confrontation? Will she be able to kill him and release herself from his hold on her? Can she be a human, a vampire and a Gulon at the same time?
I really liked this book. I think it has a really interesting take on the vampire-stories. In most vampire books a full human is the protagonist and has to choose whether to stay with her immortal love or not. This story centers around Nessy, who is a vampire with incredible morals. The book manages to stay away from msot cliches and the writer has a skill in writing descriptively.

What I loved were the flash-backs into her human and her vampire past. The writer also aknowlegdged the fact that a bunch of vampires in a forest can't go unnoticed by the human people in the village next to it. This is something Stephenie Meyer missed, which damages the credibility of her book.

My favourite character is probably Hera. He is really funny and serious at the same time. At the beginning I worried he'd be the JAcob in this story. But I was relieved to read that he had his own lover, Melody, Charles niece. This just makes the friendship between him and NEssy credible and enjoyable.

I give this book:


4 Universes!

If you like vampire stories you will definitly like this one. It is different and nice to read. I'm just readin the sequel, 'Sunrise to Sunset', and will post a review of that one as soon as I finished it.

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Teaser Tuesday


This is a weekly meme, hosted by Should be Reading.


Grab your current read and open at a random page. Then share 2 teasers, but be careful not to include spoilers. The book in front of me right now is Star Wars: Darth Bane Dynasty of Evil by Drew Karpyshyn, a New York Times bestselling author.

Random teaser 1:
'The leaders of the cult had realized a fundamental truth: the strong take what they want, and the weak can do nothing about it. They were not powerful enough to stop him from claiming Andeddu's Holocron, therefire they did not deserve it.'

Random Teaser 2:
'"Not in this!" Bane shouted. "Only the strongest has the right to rule the Sith! The title of Dark Lord must be seized, wrenched from the all-powerfull grap of the Master!"'

So, those were my two teasers. You probably will not lie this book if you're not into Star Wars!

Comment and link to your teasers !

The Mystery & Suspense Challenge

I'm in a very challenging mood today, so I decided to sign up for another challenge. This one is hosted by Book Chick City.



The rules:
  • Timeline: 01 Jan 2011 - 31 Dec 2011
  • Rules: To read TWELVE (12) mystery & suspense novels in 2011 (12 is the minimum but you can read more if you wish!)
  • You don't have to select your books ahead of time, you can just add them as you go. Also if you do list them upfront you can change them, nothing is set in stone! The books you choose can crossover into other challenges you have on the go.
  • You can join anytime between now and the later part of next year.
  • At the beginning of Jan 2011, you will find a link to specific month to add your reviews. There will be a monthly prize too courtesy of the lovely Simon & Schuster - you must be signed up to the challenge and add the link to your review to be entered into the monthly prize draw.

So, you want to sign up? Click the button in the left tab!

The Shifter Challenge

I'm now participating in the Shifter Challenge by Parajunkee.


 
The Challenge is that I read 20 books with shifters in it. Here are the rules:

  1. Post about this challenge on your blog stating that you are participating. That post is the link that you will include in the Mr. Linky below. The link should be the post link not just your blog link.
  2. Grab the button and display it in the post (use grab code underneath the button) or on your sidebar so others can join in the fun.
  3. Challenge goes from January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011
  4. The challenge is to read 20 books that have a SHIFTER as a main character, either protag or antagonist
  5. There will be a post that goes up for January 1 where you add each book as you read them and discuss books read in the comments
So, I have about a year and I already have one done. Does Twilight count? Because in that case it's two!
If you want to sign up, go to Parajunkee!

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Review: 'Suddenly in the Depths of the Forest' by Amos Oz

I have always been a fan of Amos Oz and was very exited when my request for 'Suddenly in the Depths of the Forest' was accepted.

It will be published on the 21st of March, 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
It is a childrens book and recommended for 10-14 year olds.
Pages: 144
I got this book from netGalley for free.

The main characters in this book are Matti and Maya and they live in "the village". This village doesn't have a name, but the name isn't important. Something tragic has happened in the village. Some years back all the animals in the village dissappeared. The entire flock, all the pets and even the insects and birds. Matti, Maya and all the other kids only know about animals through the tales of Teacher Emmanuella. Parents don't want to talk about it and every night all the houses are locked out of fear for the Night Demon Nehi. The forest near the village is forbidden territory, because that is where Nehi lives. The story goes that he once passed through the village and took all the animals.

A little boy, Nimi, is the childrens scapegoat and he makes a fool out of himself in order to be liked by them. One day he dissappears and nobody can find him.  After a week he returns from the forest, muddy and with torn clothes and all he does is whoop. He is excluded by the village community even more, because they think he has whoopitis. Sometimes a child talks about a dream he had about animals in school, but they are always stopped by the harrassment they face if they would continue talking about it.