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

Advertisements

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

Top 5 Wednesday | Friendships

 

I have been watching Top 5 Wednesday videos on YouTube for a while now. Top 5 Wednesday or T5W was created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey on YouTube.

The theme for this week is the top 5 friendships in books I have read. I had a pretty hard time picking these 5 friendship. I couldn’t for the life of me think of books with friendship that I liked. I will put the books in order from 5-1. One being the most favorite.

 

5. Quentin Jacobsen, Margo Roth Spiegelman & Friends

paper towns

The first group of friends (technically two groups) are from the book Paper Towns by John Green. I loved the friendship between Quentin and Margo, even though Quentin was more of a friend than Margo. They didn’t spend a lot of time together but they knew that they could count on each other. There are also Quentin’s friends and Margo’s that unite in the end.

Goodreads

My Review

 

4. Charlie, Sam & Patrick

This group of friends are from the book The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. Charlie is a shy and socially awkward boy. One day he meets Patrick and his step sister Sam. And with them he discovers the world. He gets out of his own shell.

Goodreads

 

3. Eleanor & Park

eleanor and park

This pair of friends are from the book Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. Set in 1986, Eleanor and Park meet on the school bus. Coming from two different worlds they become friends. This is so sweet and complete friendship.

Goodreads

My Review

 

2. Cath & Levi

Cath and Levi are from the book Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. (She really has a gift for writing beautiful friendships). Cath is a very shy freshman at collage. She slowly becomes friends with her roommate, Reagan, and Levi, who she thinks is Reagan’s boyfriend. What is so special about Cath and Levi’s friendship is that he never really gives up on her when she is being difficult.
I also really liked the friendship between Cath and her twin sister, Wren.

Goodreads

 

1. Harry Potter, Ron Weasley & Hermione Granger 

My favorite friends are from the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling. I feel like they are my favorite because I grew up with them. I think that probably many feel the same way. Their friendship is like most people’s. There are ups and downs. Fight and peace.

Goodreads

 

Diljá

 

 

Other people who are also doing Top 5 Wednesday can be viewed here.

Top 5 Wednesday | Books I’d Like to See as Movies

 

I have been watching Top 5 Wednesday videos on YouTube for a while now. Top 5 Wednesday or T5W was created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey on YouTube.

The theme for this week is the top 5 books I’d like to see as movies. It didn’t take me long to decide on what books I wanted to be turned into movies (or TV shows). I don’t know if any of these books are in the process of possibly being turned into movies or not. I will put the books in order from 5-1. One being the most anticipating.

 

5. Bones by Jan Burke:

This is the seventh book in the ‘An Irene Kelly Mystery’ series. I have not read any other book in this series. This book is about journalist Irene Kelly who goes along with the police and murderer Nick Parrish to a isolated mountain in hope that Parrish will lead them to his victims. Everything goes well until all hell brakes loose.
This book is great and would be a excellent movie for fans of horror and suspense.

Goodreads

4. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell:

It’s hard to only name one Rainbow Rowell novel, I would like to see all her books as movies. I have to choose Fangirl as my favorite. It’s my most resent reads and I found it easier to connect with that book than the others. Fangirl is about Cath’s college life and her fan-fiction writing about Simon Snow. It would be great if there would be scenes from her Simon Snow fanfic in the movie along with her daily life.

 Goodreads

3. Burial Rites by Hannah Kent:

This was the first book I read in 2014. Burial Rites is about the last months in the life of Agnes Magnúsdóttir who was the last person the be executed in Iceland. I think that this could be a great movie. It could have flash backs when Agnes is telling her story-for the viewer to see how things really happened. It is rumored that Jennifer Lawrence will be Agnes and Gary Ross will be the director but no other information is out yet. Who knows what will happen.

Goodreads

My Review

2. The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons:

This is the only book that I have yet to finnish. I started it last night and am about 100 pages in and loving it so far. A historical romance set in Russia during the second World War, who wouldn’t love that?
I don’t know much about this book but as far as I have read I would like to see it as a movie.

Goodreads

1. The Diviners by Libba Bray:

Finally, the most anticipated book to movie adaptation (possibly). The Diviners by Libba Bray. There is so much that is going on in this book. The murder mystery and all the people with supernatural abilities. I think that this book, and the rest of the series, will be great as a TV series. There is to much going on to fit into one movie. The scenes with Naughty John could be so creepy!

Goodreads

My Review

 

Diljá

 

 

 

 

 

Other people who are also doing Top 5 Wednesday can be viewed here.

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

Poison Dance by Livia Blackburne

 

Name & Author: Poison Dance by Livia Blackburne

Publisher: Lion’s Quill Press

Release Date: September 12th 2013

Genres: YA, Fantasy

Summary:

James is skilled, efficient, and deadly, a hired blade navigating the shifting alliances of a deteriorating Assassin’s Guild. Then he meets Thalia, an alluring but troubled dancing girl who offers him a way out—if he’ll help her kill a powerfulnobleman. With the Guild falling apart, it just might be worth the risk. But when you live, breathe, and love in a world that’s forever flirting with death, the slightest misstep can be poison. Poison dance is approximately 14,000 words, or 54 printed pages. -Goodreads

My Thoughts:

I have been looking forward to read Midnight Thief by Livia Blackburne for some time now. When Livia contacted me and offered me a copy of the prequel to the book, Poison Dance, I got really exited. This is the first time I have gotten a book (novella) for review.

I think that the novella is a great introduction to the world. Even though this was not a full novel I felt that the world and the Assassin’s Guild was well described and it felt at parts like I was reading a full novel.

The novella tells the story of James and Thalia. Even though I liked their story I’m not sure how they (James mostly) connects to Midnight Thief. I read somewhere that he is a secondary character. I didn’t connect as well with him as I did with Thalia.

When I started reading the novella I wasn’t sure about the time period the story takes place in and that bothered me a little. If I had known that this is a medieval time period some things in the book would have made more sense. I didn’t like the use of the word ‘Lass’ when the men referred to Thalia.

All in all I really liked the story. And I can’t wait to read Midnight Thief when it comes out in July 2014.

4,5/5 stars!

Diljá