Thursday, October 29, 2009

READER BUZZ: Quick Snips of Random Reads

My net conked so I was off for sometime. Got so much to talk about, so much to write but now that college's restarted, it's taking up all the time...argh!! Oh why, oh why cant there be 72 hours a day? Then I'd have time for my book, other books, a romcom/drama/musical, my blog, the guitar, bloody college, assignments, a long, long bath (instead of the usual quick shower), facebook, twitter, youtube, author websites, daydreaming, night watching, looking for my very own vampire/werewolf/fairy king/merboy EVERY SINGLE DAY. Ah, life can be so sadistic *long sigh*....
Okaaaaay, now here are some quick snips of some recent and some not-so-recent reads. JLT (maybe 'cause I just cant stop rambling :-P)
Here goes.
Arguably WHEREVER NINA LIES has to be one of the best debuts of the year. When sixteen year old Ellie sets off in search of her sister, Nina, who disappeared two years ago, with hot guy Sean for company, you know it's going to be a fun ride.What you don't know is that the breezy will give way to the pulse-racing. I was so engrossed I read it in one sitting. I'd definitely suggest you pick this up. It's a great holiday read, especially if you're on a roadtrip with your friends, Phantom Planet screaming "California" from the stereo...bliss.

My first Jill Mansell and I can't say I was particularly impressed. At seventeen, Lola was made an offer in exchange for her boyfriend, Doug. Though circumstances forced Lola to take up the offer, she never really got over him. Now years later when she accidentally stumbles upon him again, she knows she has to get him back. Except this time she's dealing with a different Doug. What do I say about this one? It was fun but very, very predictable. Mansell's characters are a cheery lot and you'll fall in love with them...but (there's always a but) a lot of the storyline seemed forced. The natural flow of things falling into place was not there. Instead, a lot of the characters ended up with each other simply because they had been single and Mansell decided they needed a partner. Forced.

Baby (yes that's the protagonist's name) lives sometimes with her absent druggie dad, sometimes in foster homes and sometimes with the local pimp. This is the story of her journey from innocence to the loss of innocence and finally the attainment of higher innocence (I get I'm sorta talking Blake..blame college influence). I loved this book. I love Baby. She goes through the worst possible things in her short life. Yet hope doesn't falter in her. Because she's still a child. She's 12. She refuses the ugliness of her life to haunt her even though it does haunt the reader. It's obvious that Heather O'Neill borrows a lot from her own life. The interview at the back of the book speaks for itself. A great debut, I'll be looking forward to more from this writer.

Believe it or not, the writer of STAR-CROSSED is just sixteen and yes, I'm jealous (ah, to have your name on the cover of a paperback/hardback *drool*). This one's a contemporary take on Romeo and Juliet, set in high school. What is unique about this book, aside from the writer's young age, is the unusual second-person narrative (first one I've read). That is an effective tool for drawing readers into the story at the word 'go'. It was kinda neat. Apparently, Rachael Wing's also written a contemporary A Midsummer Night's Dream called LOVESTRUCK. Set at a rock concert. No kidding.

My first Carole Matthews and such a delightful read too! I enjoyed it so much I didn't want to put it down (however much of a cliche that sounds). A bit impractical but her quirky sense of humour more than made up for it. Emma, in all her craziness, is one of my favourite characters ever. I want a sequel of this one. Definitely awaiting more from Matthews' pen.

Like I mentioned in the previous posts, the paranormal obssession's definitely here to stay. And, I, for one, am all for it. Raven, the sole Goth in "Dullsville" has always dreamt of becoming a vampire. Things heat up in town when a vampire in shining sunglasses, Alexander, moves into the haunted mansion at Benson Hill. A very quick read and an engrossing one at that. The first of the Vampire Kisses series (Ellen Schreiber has 7 books in mind), this one is for pre/younger teens, I'd say. Perfect for a delay at the airport.

I don't have much to say because what I say will not justify it. NINETEEN MINUTES is a gripping, edge-of-the-seat psychological thriller chronicling a school shooting while delving deep into the mind of the teen killer. Extensively researched, at times traumatic,although it does have its share of light moments (very few though) it's one of those books that haunt you (in a good way) long after you've turned the final page.And, yes, there's a twist toward the end. My next Picoult read will most probably be MY SISTER'S KEEPER (triggered by the movie, but only partly). Not worth a miss.

Adrian Mole was a legend in the 80s and rightfully so. I LOVE Adrian. He is your usual 15 year old teenage boy, drooling over his love, Pandora, and musing about his parents (and their respective lovers). Well, almost usual, except for the fact that he thinks, rather knows, he's an intellectual and mails poems to the BBC hoping to get his own personal show on air. THE GROWING PAINS OF ADRIAN MOLE is a brilliant stick-in-the-eye on adult morality. If you don't read this, you'll be missing a gem. I don't know what to say to Sue Townsend but...hats off. A genius of sorts.

I have tons else to talk about but as the owls hoots and the bats start their nocturnal days, I have to return to my writing (not the blog, the book), if I can avoid falling asleep on the keyboard itself (tiresome academia has it's price...seriously, what's the point?). So goodnight or goodmorning, depends on which part of the world you're from, and wicked dreams. For a change. *Chuckle*
Bee --xoxo 

1 comments:

Emilia Joyce Plater said...

Wow, great, insightful reviews, and so many! I've heard of almost none of these books... But they're on my radar now :)

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