This couple is ridiculous. I've read Harlequins less saccharine and groan-worthy. And I'm still waiting for the female lead to become less insipid but she's challenging my expectations in the worst way.
There's enough here to keep me going, but godamn it takes forever to get to the point. I love me some romance, but the one in here is cold and uninspiring and just getting in the way of dragons, prophecies and imminent invasion.
*sigh* what's with all the disappointing reads lately? This was more so, considering how damned long it was. Another review in the works.
I did it.
I managed to finish. I only had some 30 or so pages left and I wanted to DNF. I gave myself a final push and finished Ghost Train to New Orleans.
I have to let it sit for a while. I'm stewing in some mild rage fuelled by sad disappointment. This is not quiet objective writing time. Let me just...
...sleep on it.
The Maze Runner
Delacorte Press (2009)
The Long and Short:
A very male centric dystopia with great world building, but less the impressive characters and writing style. I wasn't expecting anything too profound, so I wasn't disappointed when it scratched only two layers of skin.
I could have done this in one sitting, but life interfered. I was not expecting much, and I got a very little bit more than that.
There were a couple of things that were quite well done, such as the amnesia angle. The terror and confusion of knowing almost nothing but your own name (only to find out later that you don't even have *that*), and the kind of oppressive feeling of living in such a fake world, knowing that you're always being observed and there's always the reliable threat of Grievers. So the world building is more than good.
I also liked the Maze "language" the boys have since it adds to the disorienting off kilter feel of being tossed into the maze. The strange made up terms seem to annoy a lot of my friends who've read it, but then I'm a linguistics student, so I appreciate those kinds of things.
The plot is simple: get out of the maze and find out what the hell is going on. That is the biggest propelling force in this book. Dashner has a flair for ending his rather short chapters with cliff-hanger/sensational statements so that you *have* to start the next one. He always has you wanting to know what happens next, even at the expense of pace and characterization. That is the biggest problem with this book; aside from Newt and Minho and even Chuck, everyone else is pretty one dimensional. Thomas is just too much of the perfect hero to really appreciate, and Teresa seems to be there merely for decoration and plot movement, which is a crying shame, as she's the only female in the book.
Another thing, of a very spoilery nature *you've been warned* I was incredibly upset that when we finally get a chance to experience the Change through Thomas, it all happens off page. WHAT. We're told over and over and over how awful the Change is, then we don't even get to experience it. Utterly robbed. He just gets up, none the worse for wear, wipes his hands of the mess and more or less says, "well now that's done with, lets call a meeting and let me tell you what all this maze business is about, shall I?". Yeah, was really not happy about that. It didn't help endear me to Thomas' super speshulness either. /Spoiler.
Other annoying things are the "not telling you things you need to know" attitude by *every*one in the book. This is where Dashner's need to keep the chapters exciting and short force the tension to be stretched out in a frustrating way. I also had a problem with Thomas and Teresa being the centre of everything. I understand them being catalysts, but Thomas seems to be the only one able to do anything right. There's so much potential in the supporting cast, but they're forced to the background to let Thomas shine in stead of being full characters in their own right. Which sucks even more since I found Thomas to be not all an interesting or sympathetic character. I may also just lack an imagination equipped with a bestiary - I couldn't for life of me figure out what the Grievers were supposed to look like, and so they ended up being much less scary than they could have been.
I'm happy I read it before I see the movie, and while I enjoyed it for the most part, I ain't gonna rush out and buy the sequel either. I'll get to it eventually.
Context Free Quote:
n/a - unfortunately, this book lacked any standout phrases or moments for me. A sign, that.
So today I finally got my copy of Dreams of Gods and Monsters, the last monstrously huge instalment in Laini Taylor's trilogy.
I loved, LOVED the first book, messed up pacing/structure, cliffhanger, insta-love and all. But I didn't attack the second volume when it came out. My TBR pile is forever threatening to collapse and bury me, so it wasn't for a rainy day.
No, I decided I would wait.
Normally, I'm an instant gratification kind of girl, but I restrained myself. I'm less willing, these days, to parse up my reading. I like to enjoy things in one fell swoop. The more complex a story, the more I want to pay attention and keep it all fresh. I'm also the queen of re-reads. I love doing it, but I realize that it's detrimental to making any significant progress on my TBR list. So I wouldn't say refresher reads are a waste of time, but its more a matter of being an adult now and having so much less time for myself than I used to. I have less and less free time and mind space to devote to remembering all the small details of a story, and that's only going to get worse, unfortunately.
So I'm ridiculously happy this last one is finally out so that I can read the one that came before it.
Been taking the time this week to figure out this internet thing and my place in it. So far I've only been lurking around various social book sites and a forum here and there. Now there's the problem of my actually creating content in the forms of review and blog posts.
I like to have control over what I create, so I've been making lots of efforts lately to find out just how to do that.
Hence my new BookLikes profile, my new-ish blog (which I will link to eventually, once I've finished wrestling with the dashboard and theme)
I'm horribly aware that I'm at the bottom of the learning curve, so I'll appreciate any help from those of you more experienced folks.
I've already found some familiar "faces", so I was quite happy to see all the new follows in my notifications.
I haven't given up entirely on Goodreads, but its more like an old coat that I don't quite fit anymore. I like to repurpose things, so instead of throwing it away I might just cut it up and find some other use for it. A little purse for Galley reviews or something.
Despite all the mental exhaustion and backaches from all this technical learning, I'm quite excited about all this.
So, Hello BookLikes, lets see what comes next.
I had fun with this one, but I have to admit that it can be described pithily by a word that is very over-used in its pages: clusterfuck.
There is ALOT going on in this book all the time. It's kinda hard to pay attention to what's happening and suspension of disbelief is very necessary to enjoy this book, much like the Die Hard movies. I just went along for the ride, which was fun once I stopped trying to make sense of it.
Aside from the abundant humour, Crusie's draw for me is her characters. Funnily enough, the character I liked best, next to René the horn-dog Cajun, was the psychotic Tyler. I like villains, especially Crusie's, but this book shortchanged its bad guys. If the craziness of the plot could have been whittled down to dealing with...well, just whittled down, I think this book might have been a little less schizophrenic.
The romance is sweet, if a bit awkward (and rushed - whole thing happens in three days). It is somewhat spoiler-ish, but it must be said that I really had a hard time with Lucie's crazy "this is forever, even if it's only been 3 days and I don't even know your first name" attitude. Maybe because the plot is so bombastically huge, the lovers don't get the time they need.
This is absolute brain candy, maybe not a Ferrero Rocher, but a Twizzler or something along those lines. A Ding Dong, maybe.
Context Free Quote:
“It’s my backup gun. You can have my primary if you want. Anything for you.”
“That’s really sweet, J.T.” Lucy looked at the gun as if it were going to bite her. “Next time, try jewelry.”
-and one more, because I loved René that much-
“She an actress?” LaFavre said.
“No, she’s the Angel of Death,” Wilder said.
“I’ve done one or two of those,” LaFavre said, unfazed. “Got to use the dark swamp voodoo on them.”