Friday, November 9, 2012

Dead Men Kill by L. Ron Hubbard

Title: Dead Men Kill

Author: L. Ron Hubbard

Published: Galaxy Press, 2010

Pages: 144

Summary: When several of the city's most respected citizens are inexplicably killed by what appear to be zombies, all Detective Terry Lane has to go on is a blue grey glove, a Haitian pharmacy bill for some very unusual drugs and a death threat from a mysterious stranger. Matters are soon complicated when a beautiful nightclub singer shows up who claims to have information that could solve the case, but whose motives are plainly suspect. Against his better judgment, Terry investigates her lead only to find himself sealed in a coffin en route to the next zombie murder—his own.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: This is not a book I would suggest reading at night if you get spooked easily.  At times I let my imagination run wild and at night time, reading scary stories, I can get pretty nervous.  I have to say that Dead Men Kill was really awesome as it combined horror and mystery which I love.

The writing style was really good.  It’s different to the kinds of books I usually read and so I find it to be quite a nice change of pace.

The story itself had the ability to keep me sucked in.  I felt like there was never a dull moment in the book because everything was just go, go, go.  I really enjoyed that as it helped me get through the story faster.
I have to say that I had fun guessing who the bad guy was and I did get it right, I always like it when I guess right.

Overall, I really enjoyed Dead Men Kill.  It was something a little different and had a lot of horror and mystery thrown in that made it awesome.

Source: AudiobookSync

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Title: The Grapes of Wrath

Author: John Steinbeck

Published: Penguin Classics, 2006

Pages: 464

Summary: The novel focuses on the Joads, a poor family of sharecroppers driven from their Oklahoma home by drought, economic hardship, and changes in financial and agricultural industries. Due to their nearly hopeless situation, and in part because they were trapped in the Dust Bowl, the Joads set out for California. Along with thousands of other "Okies", they sought jobs, land, dignity and a future.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: Before I started this book I hadn't really heard a lot about it and I had no clue what it was about.  I had heard a lot of good things about John Steinbeck as a writer though so I was interested in giving this one a try.

I feel like the pace of the story was a little slow and I did find myself getting bored but that the overall message of the story was a really good one.  I did find my mind start wandering at various parts of the plot but I also feel that once I got to the end I was glad I had read it just because it was a rewarding feeling.

One thing I found to be slightly confusing was all the characters.  So many of them had quite similar names and smaller roles so there were a few times where I got quite confused about who was who and that took me away from the story a little bit.

The ending itself was one that I enjoyed.  It stopped in a place that leaves you thinking about what happens next and I found it just really got me thinking about it.

Overall, I enjoyed The Grapes of Wrath; this extremely well-written novel is definitely a book that leaves you thinking at the end.

Source: Borrowed

Monday, November 5, 2012

One Grave at a Time by Jeaniene Frost

Title: One Grave at a Time

Author: Jeaniene Frost

Published: Avon Books, 2011

Pages: 358

Series: Night Huntress, Book 6

Summary: MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS! How do you send a killer to the grave when he's already dead?

Having narrowly averted an (under)World War, Cat Crawfield wants nothing more than a little downtime with her vampire husband, Bones. Unfortunately, her gift from New Orleans's voodoo queen just keeps on giving--leading to a personal favor that sends them into battle once again, this time against a villainous spirit.
Centuries ago, Heinrich Kramer was a witch hunter. Now, every All Hallows Eve, he takes physical form to torture innocent women before burning them alive. This year, however, a determined Cat and Bones must risk all to send him back to the other side of eternity--forever. But one wrong step and they'll be digging their own graves.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: I am addicted to this series and so I was super excited to start reading the sixth book in the series.  I started reading the books at the very beginning of the year and they have just been such great reads.

One Grave at a Time was no exception.  I loved this book so much.  The antagonist in this one was different to the usual and he also had this whole super creepy factor to it just because of the things that he was doing and what he could do.

I sort of feel like a part of the main story line was never resolved if only that it will show up in the next book but I felt that the ending as a whole was just over way too fast.  Thinking back on it, yeah, I guess it was a decent ending I just felt like it was done but missing something.

I was so happy to see Cat and Bones relationship just as awesome as ever.  There were a lot of other familiar characters in the book too, unfortunately, no Vlad but hey, there’s a whole book focusing on him right.  I was happy to see Ian in this book too.  I don’t know how I feel about him but I like how he interacts with the other characters.

Overall, I just really had a great time reading this book and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series, which doesn’t come out until next year.  In the meantime, I believe I have an entire book to acquaint myself more with Vlad!

Source: Library

Friday, November 2, 2012

Schooled by Tali Nay

Title: Schooled

Author: Tali Nay

Published: Corner Chapter Press, April 2012

Pages: 264

Summary: "Do you have to have sex to have a baby?" It's a question that ten-year-old Tali Nay asked the office assistant at her elementary school after the woman had done her best to explain how it all happened to a roomful of confused girls. Or maybe Tali was the only one who was confused. It's entirely possible, for if there's anything she knew at this point in her schooling, it was that she—without fail—was the last to know about anything interesting. Take her first day of kindergarten, where it turned out that every other kid already knew which letters were the vowels. Her first lesson as a student was consequently one of humiliation, and her second—only slightly less important—was that puking in a classroom tends to start a chain reaction. A refreshingly honest deep-dive into what we actually take away from a public education, this hilarious and heartfelt memoir captures the things we learn in school that are never part of any lesson plan yet somehow have the biggest impact upon the shaping of our perceptions over the years we spend in a classroom. Things like competition, failure, scandal, popularity, disillusionment, triumph, guilt, and, of course, throwing up in public. From the glorious to the gloriously awkward, this everyman tale is a story of growing up, one semester at a time.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: After laughing out loud just from reading the author’s note alone I had expected Schooled to be a hilarious read.  While yes, there were a lot of parts where I laughed out loud there were also some insightful ideas on life within the schooling system from Tali’s own experiences.

I enjoy the occasional non-fiction memoir and I really enjoyed reading Schooled.  As someone who is nearing the end of my degree I found it a nice experience reading through Tali’s school experience.

I found Schooled to be a really well-written book.  Tali just has a way with words that once you start one of the stories you can’t stop reading it and then you just go straight in for another one.  I did this one evening, I thought I’d just settle down and read a story or two before getting on with other things but in no time I had read about a quarter of the book.

There was nothing that I didn’t like about Schooled.  There was a wide range of stories that kept me interested and it was extremely well-written and edited brilliantly.  There really is nothing I have to complain about.

If you’re a fan of memoirs, especially those that touch on the side of humour then definitely check out Schooled.

Source: Tali Nay for review

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Yay, I'm back! October wrap-up and November goals

Yesterday was the day of my last exam and a lot has happened before I got to that point.  I've been so busy with study and work this year that I feel as though the blog has been abandoned and my reading has suffered quite a lot.  However, now I am on summer holidays and while this summer I'll be working I am still quite confident in getting a lot of reading done.  At the start of the year I challenged myself to read 200 books this year and for me to complete that goal I have 41 books to get through in November and December.  I'm hoping to get through heaps of books in November, I've actually started a lot of books and haven't finished reading them yet.  Either way, I have decided to make a list of books I want to read this November:
1. Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
2. Velveteen by Daniel Marks
3. Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
4. The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa
5. Two and Twenty Dark Tales
6. Framed & Dangerous by Kim Harrington
7. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
8. The Diviners by Libba Bray

I'm also hoping to read a few more books than that because I really do want to be able to make it to 200 books for the year but we'll see where we go.  I don't like to set out an explicit reading plan because there are so many books that I want to read, I prefer choosing something that I feel like reading at the time.

As well as all my reading for November, I'm also planning on doing NaNoWriMo for the third year.  This year I am going to be writing a story involving people who when they reach a certain age find out how much longer they have left to live.  Something like that anyway, I tend to just write by the seat of my pants when it comes to stories.

So, I'm back now and I think I'll be spending this November working on the blog and thinking about the direction that I want to take it in.  It's been interesting not blogging for a while but I've still been thinking about books a lot.  I'm not 100% sure of what I'm going to do in terms of content other than the whole review thing but I'm sure that I can think of some other things to write about to do with books.  I'm also contemplating whether or not I want to blog about other things on this blog as well as books.  It's hard to say but I feel like I probably won't change things too drastically.  For the moment I'm just going to be posting content every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to get back into the swing of things.  I'm also thinking that instead of scheduling up my posts like I used to do I will challenge myself to only post things on the day that I'm meant to.  So I'll write my post for tomorrow, tomorrow.  That way, I can just write what I feel like writing for the day.

I'm also hoping to comment more on other people's blog posts and to actually comment back to people who comment on my blog.  That way, I can talk to other people about books, which is something I really love to do.

Anyway, I think I've rambled on a lot and I'm basically just really excited to actually be back in the blogging game and looking forward to writing about books for the next while.  However, I have a LOT of blog reading to catch up on ;)