Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday Snippet

I'm coming to the end of 'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins and I must say, that this is the best book for Young Adults I have ever read....even though I'm in my thirties. It's not always comfortable reading in fact, some elements are brutal; but the suspense and slick writing that Suzanne Collins uses, makes this novel compelling.

This afternoon, some friends of mine are off to see the film version of the novel and I have had to decline their invitation to see it just because I want to read the book, before I compare it with the film version. Have you seen the film? Did you enjoy it? If you have read the book, did the film live up to your expectations? Anyway, as soon as I finish 'The Hunger Games', not only am I going to watch the film, but rush out to buy the remaining books in this trilogy.

As I am nearing the end of this novel, there may be descriptions which give away important events within this book. So here's the first paragraph of the novel:

Page 3:' When I wake up, the other side of the bed is cold. My fingers stretch out, seeking Prim's warmth but finding only the rough canvas cover of the mattress.She must have had bad dreams and climbed in with our mother. Of course she did. This is the day of the reaping.'

'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins

Whatever you're up to, enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Happy Sunday!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Sunday Snippet

I have less than 100 pages until finishing 'I Capture the Castle' by Dodie Smith. Whilst I am enjoying this novel, my opinion of the characters has changed considerably in the last few chapters. I'm not sure whether the main character Cassandra is as innocent as she first appears. I think when characters change throughout a novel (whether from unpleasant to reformed or the other way around), this can create some interesting complexities within a novel. What do you think?

Here's a snippet:

Page 324: I shall never forget it- the thick carpet, the brocade-covered walls, the bright lights staring back from the gilt mirrors, everything was so luxurious- and so meaningless, so lifeless.'

'I Capture the Castle' by Dodie Smith.

Whatever you're up to, enjoy the rest of the weekend. I'm filled with a mix of excitement and apprehension, because tomorrow is the start of my art class exhibition. I will be showing two pictures and I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone else is going to be exhibiting. I will post pictures of the event on Wednesday.

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

'The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde' by Robert Louis Stevenson (E-Book)

This novel is read as part of 'The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen' book challenge

Publisher: Feedbooks

Length: 80 Pages

Opening Line: 'Mr Utterson the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance that was never liughted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward in sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary and yet somehow lovable.'

What's good about this novel?

I like the idea of this novel. The fact that this novel is examining the multifaceted nature of human beings is interesting. Everyone has two sides to them, the good and evil and it's up to the individual to choose whether to repress or embrace the darker elements of their nature.

What's wrong about this novel?

I think that the promising idea of the story is delivered in a dull way. From the beginning, I didn't feel inspired to continued reading this story. However I was determined to persist with this novel, thinking that it would improve. For me, it didn't. The writing often waffled and I felt my interest wane throughout. Even though this novel is a mere 80 pages this novel dragged, I couldn't wait until I had reached the end.

Is this worth a read?

I don't think this was particularly worth a read. Maybe science fiction isn't my thing, but this and 'The War of the Worlds' was unable to capture my imagination. This is possibly worth a read however, to make your own mind up about it.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Snippet

Once again, apologises for not having blogged all week. This week I have been ill with a cold; I never knew that it could wipe me out quite as much as it did. I'm a lot better than before, but still trying to shift this cold grr!

On the positive, being forced indoors for the best part of a week has given me some good reading time and I have completed 'The War of the Worlds' by H.G Wells (click here for the review) and 'The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' by Robert Louis Stevenson (watch this space for the review).

Now, I'm reading 'I Capture the Castle' by Dodie Smith. This is the May read for the 'Book Circle' on a book forum I visit called 'Book Club Forum' and I'm enjoying the novel so far.

Although the previous 3 books seem to have nothing in common, it's interesting the way in which each of the novels is from a one person perspective, but for me, only 1 of the 3 authors has successfully used this writing tool successfully. In the next few weeks, I will write a exploration into first person narrative.

Here's a snippet of my latest read:

Page 47: ' Little did I think what the evening was to bring- something has actually happened to us!'

'I Capture the Castle' by Dodie Smith

Whatever you're up to, enjoy the rest of the weekend. Today, I'm going out for lunch, my first time away from the flat in over a week yay!

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

'The War of the Worlds' by H.G Wells

Publisher: Feedbooks

Length: 182 Pages

Opening Line: 'No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water.'

What's good about this novel?

What I really liked about this novel is the overall message that this novel is trying to convey. This novel is about the power that nature has over mankind and that we as humans, should respect it and not become too consumed by our own importance.

I also liked some of the descriptions of the landscapes the main character travelled through. The desolation and loneliness the character encounters, gave impact to the novel.

What's wrong with this novel?

I think the fundamental problem I had with this novel, was it's placing in time. Due to the fact that the accounts of the alien invasion were told in the past, I felt that this gave distance to the action and discouraged me as a reader from being drawn into the story.

Having listening to the Orson Welles radio adaptation of the novel, I feel that if the story had been presented in the present, this book would have worked a lot better. As it is, the straight commentary of events gave no immediacy or drama to the story.

Is this worth a read?

To be honest, I would recommend listening to the Orson Welles radio adaptation, rather than reading this novel. I feel that 'The War of the Worlds' has too many flaws, for me to enjoy it.

Have you read this novel? What are your thoughts on it?

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Sunday Snippet

I'm a little disappointed by 'The War of the Worlds' by H.G Wells. At the beginning, I thought that the one person narrative in the book was a great way to draw me into the story. Ninety pages in however, I'm finding this style of writing, flat and at times, rather boring. Considering this book is about alien invasion I hadn't anticipated feeling bored whilst reading this!

It is a contrast with the last book I read 'Wuthering Heights' by Emily Bronte. In my opinion, this book successfully uses mostly one person narrative, to create a very interesting book. So it's a shame that 'The War of the Worlds' is not as effective. Here's a 'snippet':

Page 90: 'One may picture the orderly expectation, the officers alert and watchful, the gunners ready, the ammunition piled to hand, the limber gunners with their horses and waggons, the groups of civilian spectators standing as near as they were permitted, the evening stillness, the ambulances and hospital tents with the burned and wounded from Weybridge; then the dull resonance of the shots the Martians fired, and the clumsy projectile whirling amid the neighbouring fields.'

'The War of the Worlds' by H.G Wells

Whatever you're up to have a great Easter break.

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 6, 2012

'Wuthering Heights' by Emily Bronte (E-Book)

Publisher: FeedBooks

Length: 331 Pages

What's good about this novel?

I began reading this book, with the anticipation that 'Wuthering Heights' was going to be a novel filled with cliched romance. The reality of this novel however, is completely different.

The writing within this novel is extremely good. The way in which the story is told by Mr Lockwood, the prospective tentant of Thrushcross Grange and Mr Lockwood's maid, drew me in. Although I have to admit, it took me a while to get into this novel.

Although on paper the characters within this novel are unpleasant, irrational and in most cases totally unlikeable, I felt drawn to find out what was going to happen to them all.

One element that really stood out for me with 'Wuthering Heights', is the atmosphere of sadness and torment that is created by Emily Bronte. At times it is overwhelming, but I have never read a book that could envoke so much emotion within one novel. I felt as if I was being carried on the wave of torment, along with the characters.

What's wrong with this novel?

The only negative that I can find with this novel, is the ending. The latter part of the novel builds in anticipation for something to happen, only for there to be a slight anticlimax.

Is this worth a read?

Saying that I love this book, considering its content is a rather weird thing to say, but I do love this book. I think that the complexities in emotion and character, make 'Wuthering Heights' one of the most intriguing novels I have read so far.

Have you read this novel? What are your thoughts on this?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sunday Snippet

Firstly apologises for not posting a 'Wordless Wednesday' this week. There is no real excuse for it, except to say that I lost track of days and Wednesday passed me by without me noticing! I will try and post a photo next Wednesday.

Anyway, I'm more or less on the home straight wiith 'Wuthering Heights' by Emily Bronte. I didn't know it were possible for one book to contain so many unpleasant characters! Here's a 'snippet:

Page 256: ' Seven days glided away, every one marking its course by the henceforth rapid alternation of Edgar Linton's state.'

'Wuthering Heights' by Emily Bronte.

Whatever, you're up to, enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Happy Sunday!