Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin

Name & Author: Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin

Publisher: Bantam Books

Release Date: January 1st 1996

Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Adult

Summary:

In A Game of Thrones, George R.R. MartiGame_of_thronesn has created a genuine masterpiece, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill the pages of the first volume in an epic series sure to delight fantansy fans everywhere.

In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes of the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

My Thoughts:

I never would have dreamt of that one day I would read a series with over seven books that are all around the 1000 page mark. But I have (only the first book, but that is a start!).

I was hesitant to begin this book, since I had tried to read it once before and gave up. But after watching the first two seasons I decided it was time to start this again. I have to say that having seen the TV series made reading this book a little easier. I was already familiar with the characters (and there are a lot of them), the world and the story line.

The writing in this book is amazing. I really liked the format of the book. Every chapter had a POV from a specific character. The description of the characters are very good. You will love some characters and hate others, but through out the book my opinions of some characters changed.

This book has aged very well, as it will be 20 years since it was first published this year.

I recommend all people to try to read this book and I will soon be continuing with the series.

Diljá

Advertisements

The Mother-in-Law Cure by Farha Z. Hasan

Name & Author: The Mother-in-Law Cure by Farha Z. Hasan

Publisher: Createspace (Self published)

Release Date: September 8th 2013

Genres: Fiction, Adult, Contemporary

Summary: 

The Mother-in-Law Cure is a modern day fairy tale that chronicles the rise of the book’s central character, Humara from orphan to power matriarch in an affluent family. Humara’s influence spans generations and continents, but things are seldom as they appear. Humara’s prosperity is not simply good fortune but stems from something dark and sinister – as those who encounter her quickly begin to realize. It seems that nothing can stand in Humara’s way as she pulls the strings of those around her, until she meets the unlikeliest of nemesis. Another young orphan whose status in the household is little more than a servant will be the instrument of Humara’s demise. The Mother-in-Law Cure is an urban fantasy that takes you from Pakistan to the Middle East and back to the United States.
-Goodreads

My Thoughts:

I have always been fascinated by different cultures and countries. And when the author Farha Z. Hasan contacted me and asked if I wanted to read her book set around a Pakistan family I immediately said yes.

The book revolves around two women, daughter- and mother in law, Miriam and Humara, and how they both go from being poor orphans in Pakistan to be married into a good family in the USA.

There are few characters in the book, but you really feel something about them all. And for some the feeling in the beginning changes as you read more. I really liked and loved Miriam and Adnan. Miriam is a sweet girl, who unfortunately married into a ‘bad’ family. Adnan is a happy-go-lucky man who has no worry in the world.
I really disliked Humara in the beginning, she treats Miriam badly and unfairly. But as you got more backstory about her, your feeling softens a little.

The book is beautifully written. I really enjoyed the writing style. In the summary it says that the book is a modern fairy tale. I found it very cleaver to use fairy tale names and very well known sentences from fairy tales as chapter names. I got most of them as I was reading and some of them I hadn’t heard about before. In my opinion this book isn’t a fairy tale, it doesn’t really have the happy ending.

The only thing I didn’t like about this book was the ending. I felt like Miriam changed into Humara in the end. She was supposed to be a nice and a likable girl, but she turned out to be just as manipulated as her mother in law.

This is a great book to read if you like different cultures. It isn’t a typical book I would pic up, but I really enjoyed it.

4/5 stars!

Diljá

Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Name & Author: Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Publisher: Quirk Books

Release Date: June 11th 2011

Genres: YA, Fantasy, Mystery, Paranormal

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of very curious photographs.  

It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows. -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

Do want a book that makes you want to sleep with the lights on? A book with pictures that make you not want to sleep at all? This book is different from anything that I have read before. It is very creative and unique.

As for many books I’ve been reading lately I wan’t sure about this one when I started. I had tried to read it before, but never really got into the story line. I didn’t really get into the story line this time either but I pushed through. The book didn’t really captivate me and I didn’t connect with any of the characters but I really liked this book despite all those things.

One of my favorite thing about the book is the vintage photography. The photos made the story come alive and they really did help in the beginning when you meet all the characters at once. I don’t think that I would have finished the book if it weren’t for the pictures. They are the scary factor in the book and they are definitely not for children!

All in all the book was good and a fun read, but as in all books there is something that you like and dislike. I really liked the peculiar characters and all the stories of them. There were few things that I disliked about the book. Mainly it was the romance between Jacob and Emma, one of the peculiar children. Jacob is sixteen but I always read him as a child, 11 or 12 years old, and that just made things weird.

I would recommend this book to people who want to read something different and I am definitely going to be reading the sequel, Hollow City, soon. I also recommend to read the graphic novel version of this book.

4/5 stars!

 

 

Diljá

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

Name & Author: To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Release Date: February 4th 2014

Genres: YA, Contemprary Romance

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control in this heartfelt novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Summer I Turned Pretty series. 

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once?

Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control. -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

I have not had the best of luck with Jenny Han’s writing. I have read The Summer I Turned Pretty and didn’t really like it. But I decided to give her newest book, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, a go and didn’t have high expectations for it. It turned out that the book exceeded my expectations and I quite liked it.

As the name of the book states you would expect it to focus mainly on the results of Lara Jean’s letters being sent, but it is more than that. The book isn’t the typical YA contemporary romance. It focuses more on getting to know and be yourself and about the family relationship, rather than the romantic relationship.

The book also takes on traditions. Lara Jean is half Korean and she struggles to keep the traditions from her mother (who was Korean) after she passes away. I really liked that the main character had a mixed heritage and that she wasn’t the typical white girl with blond hair that is very often the main character in books like this one.

I wan’t sure what to think about Lara Jean in the beginning. I found her to be very naive and depended on the sister, Margot. But when Margot leaves for Scotland Lara starts to change, but the change isn’t major. She always seems like she is about 14-15 years old and bit childish. Her younger sister, Kitty, seems more mature that Lara is.

There is only one scene from the book that was rememberable and that was the scene were Lara drives for the first time herself and crashes the car.

The book is overall only OK. I found the storyline lacking and there wasn’t really any resolution in the end. The book isn’t bad. It’s fluffy and fun but nothing more.

3,5/5 stars!

Diljá

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

Name & Author: We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

Publisher: Delacorte Press/Hot Key Books

Release Date: May 6th 2014

Genres: YA, Contemporary, Mystery

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.  
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart.
Read it.
And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.   -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

How do you write a review of a book that doesn’t have a summery without revealing something? I have no idea. As a reader you go in completely blind. You don’t know anything. I wasn’t even sure if the main character was a girl or a boy. The whole book is like that. You never really know where you stand. I think that is the thing that makes this book work – you don’t have a clue what’s going to happen.

I wanted to give up on this book in the beginning. It was confusing and I didn’t know what was what. But what kept me going was the writing. It’s beautiful and it sucked me in. You get addicted to the story. You have to know what happens -weather you like the book or not is a whole other story.

The namesake of the book “We Were Liars” has a lot to do with the storyline. The kids call them selfs the Liars. It doesn’t really change the storyline, but it changes the readers view of the storyline. I never knew when they were telling the truth or not. I still don’t at parts.

This book really took me by surprise. I did NOT see that ending coming. If you want to know more you have to read the book. I recommend you do so. It is a short read, but a very powerful one.

5/5 stars!

 

Diljá

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Name & Author: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Publisher: Dutton Adult

Release Date: April 14th 2011

Genres: Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Humor

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

“Hi, I’m the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you . . . “
attachments
Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It’s company policy.) But they can’t quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.

Meanwhile, Lincoln O’Neill can’t believe this is his job now- reading other people’s e-mail. When he applied to be “internet security officer,” he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.

When Lincoln comes across Beth’s and Jennifer’s messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can’t help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories.

By the time Lincoln realizes he’s falling for Beth, it’s way too late to introduce himself.

What would he say . . . ?      -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

This is the second book I have read by Rainbow Rowell. After reading Eleanor & Park (review here) last year, I had some expectation for this book. Thankfully I wasn’t disappointed. I really enjoyed this book. It was very cute and heartwarming book that woke the inner (maybe not so inner) nerd in me. Yay for that!

The first sentence in the summary is what drew me in: “Hi, I’m the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you . . . ”  What do you do when you fall in love with someone you haven’t really met?

The book is set up like two stories that intertwine in the ending. There is Beth and Jennifer’s story, which is mainly set up in email form. I haven’t read many books that have email conversations and to my surprise I really enjoyed that part.

And then there is Lincoln’s story. His story is set up like a ‘normal’ story. I loved his character. He reminded me of Charles Eppes from the TV series Numb3rs.

I genuinely like how Rainbow Rowell takes on one ‘new’ thing that had a big influence on people. In Attachments it’s the emails. In other books it’s comic books (Eleanor & Park), fanfiction (Fangirl) and the phone landline (Landline).

As I said in the beginning the book awoke the inner nerd in me. Particularly it was the last sentences in the book:

“Lincoln…”
He didn’t answer.
“Lincoln? Are you asleep?”
“I didn’t know someone could love me like this,” she said. “Could love me and love me and love me without…needing space.”
Lincoln wasn’t asleep. He rolled on top of her.
“There’s no air in space,” he said.

All in all I loved this book. Everyone should read it, it has something for everyone in it.

5/5 stars!

Diljá

The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons

 

Name & Author: The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons

Publisher: HarperCollins

Release Date: July 7th 2000

Genres: Fiction, Romance, Historical

Book One in The Bronze Horseman trilogy.

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

A Love of extraordinary power.    

Leningrad 1941. Two sisters, Tatiana and Dasha, share the same bed, living in one room with their brother and parents. It is a hard, impoverished life, yet the Metanovs know many who are not as fortunate as they.

The family routine is shattered on 22 June 1941 when Hitler invades Russia. For the Metanovs, for Leningrad and for Tatiana, life will never be the same again. On that fateful day, Tatiana meets a brash young officer named Alexander.

The family suffers as Hitler’s army advances on Leningrad, and the Russian winters closes in. With bombs falling and the city under siege, Tatiana and Alexander are drawn to each other in an impossible love. It is a love that could tear Tatiana’s family apart, a love that carries a secret that could mean death for anyone who hears it.

Confronted on one hand by Hitler’s unstoppable war machine and on the other by a Soviet system determined to crush the human spirit, Tatiana and Alexander are pitted against the very tide of history, at a turning point in the century that made the modern world.

My Thoughts:

This book has been sitting on my bookshelf for quite some time now. I kept from reading it  because it is huge (637 pages) and the letters are tiny. Don’t let these thing stoping you from reading The Bronze Horseman. Dive straight in, the book is amazing.

This book is a epic love story set in time of war. How much better can it get? Tatiana and Alexander meet on the day Germans invade Russia. And from that their undying, and doomed, love begins.

Tatiana is very naive girl. She puts everyone’s needs in front of her own (which Alexander hates). Her naiveness is cute at times, but at other times she seemed plain childish.

Paullina Simons wrote this book so beautifully. You can feel every emotion. You cry, laugh, shout in frustration and cry again. All the character seam very realistic. I found that at some parts of the book I wanted to take the characters and shake some sense into them, most of the time it was Tatiana.

It was new experience to read about WWII from Russia’s point of view. In school I mostly just read about the affect the war had on western Europe. The affect it had on Germany, but never about the affect Germans had on the rest of the world.

I really, really loved this book. Don’t let the size fool you, I read it in three days. I recommend everyone to give it a try. And I can’t wait to read the rest of the trilogy. It’s one of my favorite so far this year.

5/5 stars!

Diljá

Find Me by Romily Bernard

Name & Author: Find Me by Romily Bernard

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Release Date: September 23rd 2013

Genres: Young Adult, Mystery, Thriller

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

A girl is dead…
A killer’s closing in…
And two little words are the only clue…
“Find Me”.

These are the words that Wick Tate finds in Tessa Wayne’s diary. And now Tessa has been found … dead. Does someone out there really expect Wick to uncover the truth about her death?

An expert computer hacker, Wick has the skills for the job, but with the threat of her ex-con dad returning, the detective hunting him sniffing around and new foster parents to keep happy, getting involved with a murder case is the last thing she wants to do. Until her little sister, Lily, is the next target. 

Foster child. Daughter of a felon. Loner hacker-girl. Wick has a bad attitude and sarcasm to spare. And now she’s going to find this killer, no matter what it takes. Because it just got personal.  -Goodreads

 

My Thoughts:

I was not sure about this book when I started reading it. It has very mixed reviews and it didn’t capture me at first. The thing that sucked me in was the fact that I needed to know what would happen to Wick.

The main character, Wick Tate, lives with her little sister, Lily, with a new foster family. Wick is a hard headed girl with a dark past (with a drug dealer, criminal mastermind father on the loose). While Wick doesn’t trust anyone or lets anyone in, Lily believes in the good in everyone and is very trusting.

The storyline is little slow in the beginning but once you get past that you can’t put the book down.

The book is very well written, very well thought out. It makes you think about when you are alone in the world and you see dark things in every corner who can you really trust? Can you trust the parental figure or the policeman?

There was one character that I really liked and the effect he had on Wick – Griff. Wick needed someone who wouldn’t use her or give up on her.

I really liked this book. It leaves you hanging and is full of plot twists.

4/5 stars!

 

Diljá

The Diviners by Libba Bray

Name & Author: The Diviners by Libba Bray

Publisher: Little, Brown Books

Release Date: September 1st 2012

Genres: YA, Historical Fiction, Paranormal, Mystery, Horror

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Summary:

Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City—and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult. 

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.

As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened. -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

This is the second book that I have read by Libba Bray. The first was A Great and Terrible Beauty, the first book in the Gemma Doyle trilogy, which I really liked but for some reason didn’t finish the trilogy. I’m really glad that I picked this one up, it was amazing.

The Diviners is set in New York in 1926. I really like this time period and Libba Bray described it very well and in a realistic way.

Evie O’neill is the main character. I didn’t like her in the beginning. She seemed shallow and self centered. My opinion changed through out the book. In the end she is a strong character and is nothing like she was in the beginning.

The book is very creepy and scary. The villain Naughty John always sings the same creepy song when he is nearing his next victim. Libba Bray’s writing is amazing. I loved the way she made different characters or moods shine through in her writing. You feel the innocence in some characters and then the creepy and really scary feeling with others.

There was only one thing that bugged me in the book and that is all the characters with some extraordinary abilities. She writes very much about them but they don’t have anything or much to do with the storyline. I think that they will all be a big part of the next book Lair of Dreams, but they weren’t in this one. It isn’t bad to have them in the book, but it confused me at times.

I loved this book, it’s amazing. I recommend all who haven’t read it to pick it up and those who have read it to read it again. The next book, Lair of Dreams comes out in August 2014.

5/5 stars!

Diljá

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

 

Name & Author: The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Release Date: October 1st 2013

Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Romance

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

 

Summary:

An international sensation, this hilarious, feel-good novel is narrated by an oddly charming and socially challenged genetics professor on an unusual quest: to find out if he is capable of true love. 

Don Tillman, professor of genetics, has never been on a second date. He is a man who can count all his friends on the fingers of one hand, whose lifelong difficulty with social rituals has convinced him that he is simply not wired for romance. So when an acquaintance informs him that he would make a “wonderful” husband, his first reaction is shock. Yet he must concede to the statistical probability that there is someone for everyone, and he embarks upon The Wife Project. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which he approaches all things, Don sets out to find the perfect partner. She will be punctual and logical—most definitely not a barmaid, a smoker, a drinker, or a late-arriver.

Yet Rosie Jarman is all these things. She is also beguiling, fiery, intelligent—and on a quest of her own. She is looking for her biological father, a search that a certain DNA expert might be able to help her with. Don’s Wife Project takes a back burner to the Father Project and an unlikely relationship blooms, forcing the scientifically minded geneticist to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie—and the realization that love is not always what looks good on paper.

The Rosie Project is a moving and hilarious novel for anyone who has ever tenaciously gone after life or love in the face of overwhelming challenges. -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

I don’t usually read books translated into Icelandic if they are originally written in English. But, I did with this one and I don’t think there would have been much difference if I had read it in English. I really loved this book. It made me laugh out lout, smile to myself and cry.

The Rosie Project has many different characters. There is the social awkward one, the open one, the player and many more. Don Tilliman is the social awkward one. At the beginning of the book I felt I was reading a Sheldon Cooper (The Big Bang Theory) love story.

Don invents the Wife project to find him a wife because married men are ‘more successful’ in life. In that journey he meets Rosie-a complete opposite of what his ideas of the perfect wife are. And of course she is the one for him. Together they continue the Wife project and start the search for Rosie’s biological father. And slowly they fall in love. One of my favorite quote from the book is when Don is trying to express his love for Rosie:

“I haven’t changed my mind. That’s the point! I want to spend my life with you even though it’s totally irrational. And you have short earlobes. Socially and genetically there’s no reason for me to be attracted to you. The only logical conclusion is that I must be in love with you.”

Graeme Simsion originally wrote this story as a movie script when he was studying screenwriting at RMIT. While reading the book I felt like the story could easily been made into a movie. It didn’t feel like it was written to be made into a movie which is a good thing.

This book is amazing and fun read. I recommend everybody to give it a try.

5/5 stars!

Diljá