Tuesday, 29 July 2014

An Abundance Of Katherines - John Green

"19 Katherines and counting...
When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton's type is girls names Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact.

An Abundance of Katherines is about a former child prodigy, Colin, who has always dated Katherines. He uses a road trip with his best friend as a way to recover from recently being dumped by his 19th Katherine. In honesty I read this book because I like John Green's writing style and the thought and development of his characters.

Throughout the book Colin's best friend Hassan has no problem telling Colin when he talks about things people find utterly uninteresting. Colin likes to try and talk Hassan into enrolling in college but he has not managed to be successful. Beyond both of these characters is an amusing and powerful friendship, it is obvious to see both characters are trying to have the other succeed where the other fails.

Throughout the book it is repeated about mattering to the world, some don't think the point is relevant to the plot, but I do. It is important to know you matter, even if the author has put it into his book where others think it irrelevant. The book does focus primarily on Colin ans his theorem of Dumper's and Dumpee's, this does involve math but it is a choice of yours whether to read the math part, that is what I like, you don't have to read the math part its a choice of the reader and it was enough to keep me interested in something I have not previously given much thought to.

One thing that always intrigued me throughout the book was Colin's revelation about how stories always affect us, regardless of their importance, which was tied in with his thoughts about mattering and oblivion. His belief that we can never be the person we once were because we are only the person we are now was also another thing I thought intriguing.

I love this illustration on the book cover even thought it is different to the one I have, I  like it because if you look, the heart in Colin's chest is broken in 19 pieces representing the 19 times his heart has been  broken by a Katherine.

Book Rating:

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Readathon Relay

As most of you know, me and two other bloggers took part in a 24 hour book read where the money raised would be given to beat bullying. The event begun at 12pm on Friday night til 8am then from 8am to 4th then 4 til 12pm.
I had the first shift, and let's just say it was a difficult time. At 4 am I was suppose to have a break and update you all but due to the thunderstorm my Internet had gone down and It was bad timing.
By the end of my 8 hours I had finished
the last 1/3 of World War Z -  Max Brooks
I also read a short horror story called The Second Coming - Griffin Hayes.
Both were very enjoyable to read and there will be a review up for each of them very soon.
I also got round to reading Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, by 8am I had reached the beginning of chapter 35.
The Readathon relay is officially over and I would like to thank all of those who supported and sponsored us. I had a great time taking part and hopefully with the money raised we can make a difference.
The other two book bloggers who took part with me are:
Go check them out.

Monday, 14 July 2014

A Monster Calls - Patrick Ness

"Conor has had the same dream every night, ever since his mother first fell ill, ever since she started the treatments that dont quite seem to be working. But tonight is different. Tonight when he wakes, theres a visitor at his window. Its an ancient, elemental, a force of nature. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.
It wants the truth." 

Thirteen-year-old Conor has nightmares. He's losing his mother to cancer and he's losing himself, becoming detached from his own life and others. Every night he dreams a truth he does not want to face. One night, he hears a monster calling his name, and sees it walk from its place to his window. But he's not scared. There are worse monsters, and this is not the monster he was expecting.
This monster, an ancient kind of being in the form of a yew tree that has the ability to heal. He has come walking, because Conor had called him. And it wants to scare him. To tell him stories. To make him admit the truth of his fear, that he faces every night when he falls asleep.
The book is based around several concepts, but most of all Family, Illness and the ability to heal. but also the story is about stories, the strength of the stories we tell each other, and how they can affect us. Stories we tell can hurt and heal us if we use them for that purpose. as always this is a story that tells a story, it isn't rare to find a story within a story.The monster tells the stories, but they don't turn out quite as we might expect from our knowledge of childhood fairy tales.
The plot of Conor's story is quite simple. It is a journey of learning to heal, so there isn't a whole lot of anything even though some action, like his encounters with the school bully, and the clock at his grandmother's house. But mostly there is a lot of character development, and simple events that mould the family in the mist of illness.
I would recommend A Monster Calls to nearly any reader. Older teens might be put off by the young lead character or the simple story, but I hope you'll (if you're reading this) try it anyway. Some readers might find the monster frightening, but it is the best kind of frightening. The kind that shows you that maybe there wasn't so much to fear after all.
Even though the cover is quite intimidating and dark it isn't all that much scary, there is some violence but only of the bully kind. it is a deep story that you may interpret differently than to what I did, but I hope if you do indeed read it that you embrace it's many meanings. 

Book Rating:

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Cry Silent Tears - Joe Peters

"Joe was only 5 years old when he watched his beloved daddy burn to death in a garage fire. And five years old when he lost his voice.

Left at the mercy of his abusive, violent family and unable to ask anyone for help, little Joe's life turned into a living hell. Raped by his mothers boyfriend, beaten and locked in the cellar, he was fed only on scraps that he was forced to lick from the floor. To drink water, he first had to gnaw off the glued top of a bottle, a trick played on him by his brothers.

But much, much worse was to come."

Joe  was only 5 years old when he saw an incident that would literally strike him dumb. Joe was not able to speak again until the age 9, but in the past 4 years that had passed Joe was unable to talk his way out of the abuse he received.

His schizophrenic mother and two of his older brothers spent years beating him, raping him and keeping him locked in the basement of the family home, When he wasn't a prisoner in the basement, he was treated like a dog, forced to lick scraps of food from the floor, he was sometimes left in the dark naked for 3 days at a time without human contact.

Unable to read and write Joe could only express through drawings. Most were of his father burning in the flames, His mother was then allowed to convince teachers at his school that he had become mentally unbalanced by the trauma.
The violence and sexual abuse escalated, his step father along with other men, were allowed to use him as they wished, most of them would pay.

The only thing that helped him survive was the kindness of his oldest brother and his only school friend who showed him that love is around even in the darkest of situations.
At 14 Joe finally found the courage to run away,fed by the local kids after the discovered him mile away from his home. His freedom was short lived and he spent the following 2 years being dragged between foster homes and his mothers house until the moment he turned 16. He hitch - hiked his way to the other side of the country. he was finally free and on a journey to a new life.

Joe Peters grew to become and extraordinary man who build up the strength to walk away from the abuse. He now speaks out against abuse and supports the children who's lives have been affected by it.
This is the heart wrenching story of a scared child on his journey to becoming an extraordinary man.

Book Rating:

Saturday, 12 July 2014

The Perks Of Being A Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky

"Charlie is a freshman.
And while he's not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years yet socially awkward, he is a wallflower, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it.

Charlie is attempting to navigate his way through uncharted territory: the world or first dates and mixed tapes, family dramas and new friends; the worlds of sex, drugs and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when all one requires is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite. But he can't stay on the sideline forever. Standing on the fringes of life offers a unique perspective. But there comes a time to see what it looks like from the dance floor."

I never usually like books that are written in a letter/diary format but i had been recommended to read it so I did.

Charlie is and outsider, he gets bullied and would avoid the school bus to walk 40 minutes to his home instead.
In a series of letters from Charlie to an unknown person we learn of his new friends, his family and himself.There is on more than one occasion a time where he mentions his English teacher, Bill, who gives him extra books for him to write essays on as he wishes to be a writer one day.

Charlie is a mystery for another day, right before he started high school his best friend had shot himself. At school he meets Sam and Patrick, both are outsiders too,cooler ones. Patrick is gay, and before his step sister Sam introduced himself to "good" music, he was a popular kid. Sam and Patrick introduce Charlie to parties, drugs and rock music and for the first time he knows what it feels like to have real friends.

What makes this book so special is that its reality bound, if an adult was to read it, it takes them back to being a teenager/child, and if a child was to read it, it shows what lies ahead and what could inspire them as a teenager. By now we should all know there is no other time to discover who you are and where you belong like when you are a teenager.

Self discovery may deem daunting, but if we never know who we truly are we can not be the best we can be.

Book Rating:

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Allegiant - Veronica Roth

"The faction- based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered - fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she's knows, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties and painful memories.

But Tris's new reality is even more alarming that the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths chance the hearts of those she loves. And once again Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature - and of herself- whilst facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance sacrifice and love."

This is the final of the 3.
After all Tris and Four have been through, is there more?
Unable to stay in a place where so much has happened they leave with a few others. The get out of the geat but is what greets them far worse that what they just left behind?

After all Caleb had done I've been able to forgive him, he is still human, therefore at the bottom of my Allegiant favourite character list. Tris, Four and Christina are still high up my list. Then there is Peter. We knows him as the one who attacked Tris and stabbed Edward int he eyes with a butter knife, but he is a favourite of mind because he lives like if somebody does something good for him he will do something good for them. His actions may be irrational and defensive but his hay of repaying favours is a soft side.

After they left, out of the gates I was guessing all the way to the end, My Favourite part of the book has to be the Epilogue, its a new starts and a wonderful ending. Broke my heart. As always the action scenes were written particularly well.

I think it is clear to say that at 12pm I had gotten to chapter 17 on the same night i had finished Insurgent. I then read from 10am til 3pm and then from 5pm til 11pm. I spent the time it took to read from chapter twenty eight to thirty nine crying, then from forty five until the end crying and I didn't even feel like a goon doing it either.

I'm really upset that the trilogy has now come to an end and that i no longer can indulge in reading about Tris and Four, Caleb, Peter. Christina, Zeke or Shauna or Matthew or Cara and Amar or anyone else involved in the Trilogy.If you're a teenager into romance/love and action and occasionally crying, this book is for you, infact the whole trilogy is. I cannot wait for the books to finally have their movies.

For one final time, Allegiant's book cover is beautiful and within its rights to be.

Book Rating:                                       Trilogy Rating:
5/5                                                         9/10

Insurgent - Veronica Roth

"Tris has survived a brutal attack on her former home and family. But she has paid a terrible price. Wracked by grief and guilt, she becomes ever more reckless as she struggles to accept her new future.
Yet if Tris wants to uncover the truth about her world, she must be stronger than ever...because more shocking choices and sacrifices lie ahead."

Still haunted by her actions Tris can not stop reliving them. The group reaches the fence and enter the Amity compound looking for allies. After one battle is over another one begins.

I still favour Four Tris and Christina but after reading this book I don't think I  can favour Caleb. Tori becomes stronger and more influential and those are great traits. Uriah is a wonder because even in the worst of times he can always crack a joke and smile.

In this book I saw none of it coming, I was always guessing and trying to figure out what was to comes but the only way it would happen was if i were to carry on reading. I can remember welling up reading this book but never full on crying. I did laugh when I can, Probably just to stop me from crying.
I can remember opening this book whilst lying on my bed at 10am, I  lay there till 8pm reading it, Maybe my curiosity got the best of me but the book sure as hell kept me turning pages.

Just like Divergent I dislike it having a last page with a last word and a last full stop, but knowing I was now going to be on the final book made it even more heart breaking. This book has even less traits with The Hunger Games, It is more independent and original now. I can no longer compare any of Divergent, Insurgent, Allegiant with The Hunger Games.

If you are a teenager who likes romance and action this book is for you.

The book has a cover that is truly glorious, Magnificent in its own right.

Book Rating:

Divergent - Veronica Roth

"Sixteen-year-old Tris is forced to makes a terrible choice. In a divided society where everyone must conform, Tris does not fit.
So she ventures out alone, determined to discover where she truly belongs. Shocked by her brutal new life, Tris can trust no one. And yet she is drawn to a boy who seems to both threaten and protect her.
The hardest choice lies ahead."

Young Beatrice Prior lives in a community divided into 5 factions;
The factions have different values but none the same.

Beatrice is 16 and lives in a house with her family in Abnegation.The Selfless. She now has a choice to change that, she doesn't think she truly belongs and decides to change, so she does. To Dauntless. The Brave

When it comes to picking a favourite character in a trilogy it can differ or I just keep adding more to the list. As this is the first instalment of the trilogy, I am currently in favour of Beatrice 'Tris' Prior, Tobias 'Four' Eaton, Tori, Caleb and Christina. Tris is on a voyage of self discovery and I believe you have to be strong and brave to want to discover yourself. Four is strong and stern, he has a soft side but he's independent when it comes to thinking but he finds it difficult to find trust within people. Caleb is brave and intelligent and strong willed, that is why I like him, he is the perfect combination of bravery and intelligence. Christina is truthful and doesn't care for the repercussions of being so. She is also a supportive and caring friend.

I always get asked 'do the characters feel real to you?' and it is always the same answer. Yes. In a trilogy or just any book they are real. Like if I call their names they would run up the stairs and join me, That is how real they can be to me. To have a character feel real, you must allow yourself to believe. The material is in front of you, you just have to believe.

The book to me had a few predictable moments but besides those moments I was forced to keep guessing as everything else was unpredictable. I cant say I have a favourite part of the book without spoiling it 100% so it be open for discussion.

The action scenes are written particularly well. I always feel myself being drawn further and further in during the action scenes. I had cried at this books and well I cry at most books, but I cred at the emotionally tense parts.
This book draws you in and keeps you turning pages. I finished Divergent a while back but I was eager to read the following book, Insurgent. But during exams I didn't have enough time to do so, but eventually after my exams I had the time.

I think the only thing I dislikes about the book was that it had a last pages,a last word,a last full stop. But what softened the blow was the fact I had two more books to read after it.
If you like action and romance and you are a teenager this books is for you, I can remember saying this book has small traits of The Hunger Games, it does but only tiny ones.

The books front cover is amazing and uses a blend of really gorgeous colours.

Book Rating:

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Up and coming

Today is Sunday 6th July.

In 13 days I will be taking part in a 24 hour readathon relay.
This fundraising event does not go without cause. All money raised will be going to beat bullying. Not only is this a chance to do what I love but it is also going to be a personal achievement and I can not wait to make a difference.
So far including me there are 3 people participating so that means 8 hour reading each. Of course you are all welcome either to take part and read or just for moral support both are much appreciated.
Follow my personal twitter @bleep98 and this blogs own account @booksglory to stay up to date.