Tag Archive: book


I_Am_Number_Four_CoverThis book series was recommended to me by my chiropractor, believe it or not. Every healthcare professional I talk to connects with me through reading for some reason…

Anyway, I just finished the fourth book of the series, The Fall of Five, and I’m REALLY ANGRY, that I have to wait to get more of the story. I seriously haven’t had to wait for the next book in a series to come out since Harry Potter… and Eragon, but I kind of gave up waiting with Eragon. It’s an old feeling, but I love feeling it again. I’ve been a little dry with reading lately, but this series threw me headlong into the frenzy again.

It’s thrilling and fast-paced, though it doesn’t seem like it for the first book and a half or so. There’s mystery and intrigue and STUFF. I nearly (well I say nearly…) flipped out in my chemistry class today when I reached the end of it. I was seriously put out. I’ll be going back to the Redwall series now, but I won’t soon forget this series. It’s great and I highly recommend it to PEOPLE.

Cheerio!

A Countess Below Stairs

 

12485933

Eva Ibbotson is actually an author from my childhood. I read a lot as a child, which is probably not very surprising to most people, but really, I don’t remember a lot of the books I read then. Except for The Last Treasure, which I read when I was in the third or fourth grade and couldn’t get out of my head after that, even though I had forgotten the title and the author’s name (which I didn’t mention here because I CAN’T REMEMBER IT…).

The book I most likely read the most as a kid, excepting the Harry Potter series, was a book called Which Witch. I didn’t even realize that A Countess Below Stairs (which I got for Christmas this last time round) was written by the same author as Which Witch until I went to put it away on my bookshelf and found that I already owned a book by Ibbotson. Which Witch is a truly magnificent book, despite the fact that it was written for children, and I really must do a book review for it, but on to this review.

This book was actually weird for me in that the main character didn’t seem to have any arc. She starts out obedient, nice, whatnot and she ends that way. It was a really good read and it was pretty hilarious, but I attribute it to my interest in aristocratic society more than anything. The other characters seemed a bit shallow to me in the beginning, but they filled out very nicely as the book progressed.

Despite the unfortunately static main character, the book was really easy for me to read. Of course, now that I’ve taken a class entirely based around the Lord of the Rings trilogy, every read seems easy to me. That is the best part of reading, in my opinion. When the book flows well and the characters are engaging and Sam and Frodo aren’t wandering around the marshes for five hundred pages or whatever it is.

Some people are amazed at a bookworm’s ability to sit and read for hours at a time. From the outside, it certainly does seem boring, but in fact, it isn’t at all like sitting around doing nothing. In fact, it’s the most compelling thing I can think of. There are plenty of things that teenagers do that are more boring than reading. Most television shows are repetitive and obnoxious, text messaging people requires a lot of waiting and a lot of emoticons.

Lightning

362px-LightningK This book is my favorite book. I always forget that whenever I’m not reading it, but when I am, I know that it’s my favorite. The first time I read it, my brother lent it to me and I spent years afterward looking for it. When I finally did find it, there were two copies at the local DI, which seemed unfair to me since I had been looking there for so long.

You will like this book if you like time travel. The time travel in this novel represents what I believe time travel would be if it were possible, no matter how much I love Doctor Who.

It’s hard to explain just why this book is so fantastic to me, but I think it’s mostly due to the connection to the past. I think a lot about the past and a lot about the effects of changing things in the past. There’s this fantastic motif of how knowledge and hindsight can affect how decisions are made.

One thing that kind of bugged me was this idea of destiny that kept coming up throughout the book. It did make for a more robust plot, but otherwise, I disagree with the idea of destiny for the most part.

There isn’t a lot I can say about why the book appeals to me without spoiling it. Anyway, this book should be read by you. All of you. Now.

The Elegance of the Hedgehog

ImageI haven’t done a book review in a long time. I remember swearing that I was going to do more of them, but then I didn’t. In any case, I want to do one now for no particular reason.

This book came into my possession by interesting means. I first heard of this book from a psychoanalyst (psychiatrist to you primitives). This particular guy was a very interesting guy and he made a distinct impression on me. Though he didn’t cure me of my anxiety, he did have a lot to say about literature. His favorite book to talk about was Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky, which I actually got to read a few months later in my AP Literature class. It is also now one of my favorite books. Ever. It really is fantastic, though my classmates will tell you otherwise.

This book, however, was another book he spoke about once. I’m pretty sure that, at the time, he couldn’t remember the title of the book, but he described the plot of the book to me, which I thought sounded pretty interesting, for the purposes of the conversation we were having at that point.

Around four months later, I stopped going to therapy and continued on with my happy little life. This was around the time when my friend Leslie and I started hanging out a lot after school. Up to this point in our friendship, we were simply far too lazy to “hang out”, but now we had devised a master plan for Halloween costumes and did a lot of running about in order to make it happen. One of the things we started doing frequently, was shopping at the local DI (Deseret Industries), where the used books were only fifty cents to a few dollars and usually had plenty of the books that we were looking for. Within the next year, my personal library increased in size by a factor of around four or five. In short, I obtained two new bookshelves for my bedroom and finally had enough books to organize them into some sort of order.

One day, Leslie and I were preparing for college. We cleaned the room that her grandparents are going to let us live in, we built our fantastically stylish bunk beds, and we mapped out where we were going to cram all our stuff (books). By way of reward, we treated ourselves with a trip to DI. As always, we made our way to the back corner that housed the books and began methodically sorting through the books to see if they had any that we wanted. I was going along a shelf when I reached a book entitled, “The Portable Therapist.” Because of the general attitude that my social circle has toward therapy, I picked it up to look at it, bemused. Putting it back, I saw the book pictured above.

Not knowing the title of this book in relation to the story line, I picked it up, mostly because I like hedgehogs. They’re adorable. Reading the description of the book’s plot, I quickly realized that this was the book that my therapist had been speaking of all that time ago. I looked back down at The Portable Therapist and laughed at the coincidence. Then I bought both books, of course, to commemorate the occasion.

Having just read it, I understand perfectly why my therapist would like this book. I’m something of an intellectual, yet half of the words in the book were words that I wasn’t familiar with. Not to mention the syntax was so complicated that I even had to re-read sentences. It was also incredible in that the main characters were constantly obsessing about grammar. Anyone who feels so strongly about grammar has a place in my heart.

Another thing about this book made an impression on me. That thing was the fact that, throughout the whole book, the main character (a little girl) was planning her own death. She gave very well-thought-out reasons for her suicide and was very convinced that her course was the right one. However, throughout every one of her arguments, I was constantly disagreeing. This isn’t a specifically individual reaction, but it was important to me. My state of mental health has never been…. ideal. I was in therapy, you can make your own inferences. It was just important to me because it assured me of my own will to live. I’m not suicidal. I never thought I was, but something about knowing for sure is strangely comforting.

Anyway, this book is a spectacular read, if you can keep up with the advanced writing. It’s a very nice “meaning of life” book, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Favorite Actor:

I’m assuming that this means favorite actor within Doctor Who, otherwise, I might have to put a little more thought into the question. My favorite actor is probably David Tennant or Matt Smith. I can’t really decide just like I can’t decide who my favorite Doctor is. I don’t really have favorites. I have things or people that I like and things or people that I don’t like and then I just call them all my favorite.

My friends who spend any small amount of time with me can attest to this.

“Such-and-such teacher? He’s my favorite!”

“So-and-so in Orchestra class? She’s my favorite!”

“Crime and Punishment/The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes/Warriors/Pride and Prejudice/Artemis Fowl/books by John Green/Redwall books/The Bartimaeus Trilogy? THAT’S MY FAVORITE BOOK EVVVVERRRRRRRRRRRRR!”

I really am surprised that people don’t get more annoyed with me about this…

Anyway, favorite actor… I pretty much like them all.