Wednesday, 6 November 2019

More Mini-Reviews

I think, for now at least, I prefer this mini-review format rather than doing long reviews for each book so I'm going to stick with that for now.

So here are the books I've read since I last checked in, and what I thought of them.

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

Thoughts: I'd heard amazing things about this book for years and honestly, for me it was just not worth the hype. It was a decent book, but it didn't wow me and since reading, I've pretty much forgotten about it if I'm honest. For me, the great books linger.

Unfiltered by Lily Collins

Thoughts: I adore Lily Collins. I did not adore this book. It felt like she had a list of cliche inspiration quotes that other people said and just sat down and tried to put them into her own words (sometimes not even that far) and relate them to her own life. At times it felt more like a mediocre, derivative self-help book than a biography. The most interesting parts of the book, things about her life and relationships, were bits that were the most vague, most glossed over.

The Romance of Tristan and Iseult by M. Joseph Bedier

Thoughts: I've been meaning to read this one for years because I love the movie (hush, we all have our shames!) and love other retelling's of their story. I liked it, but it was bananas. The retelling's I've read/watched have been a bit more grounded in reality, a bit more of a tragic love story but in this one the whole story hinges on a love potion and some quite slapstick shenanigans.

The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman

Thoughts: I quite liked this book. I was mostly glad to be done with the series though. I still don't think the books are worth the hype. Like, yes, I can acknowledge the skill that went into creating this world and that the characters and relationships are quite well done...but I just never felt like the book swept me up into its world, I never felt totally invested, never felt like I couldn't put the book down. It was just...average and I don't have the same love for it everyone and their mother seems to.

Pumpkin Heads by Rainbow Rowell & Faith Erin Hicks

Thoughts: Now this one, I freaking adored. The illustrations were great, the story was lovely, and it gave me all of the cosy autumnal feels and the only thing I didn't like was that it ended. I want more story, I want to see these two characters working as Santa's Elves, I want to see them go on a road trip, I just want more of them.

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Thoughts: I FINALLY FINISHED THIS DAMN SERIES. Now, I loved the original trilogy in this world. Then she announced a prequel trilogy, then a surprise continuation of the original trilogy to six books, then a sequel/spin-off trilogy and novella and oh my god it was just too freaking much. I spent like a decade of my life reading these freaking books and I feel like they got stale at least halfway through that. But I finished (to clarify, I finished The Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices). As for the actual book, meh, I liked it, but I just really resented how long this series dragged on for.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Thoughts: Glad I read it. Thought it was alright, not my kind of classic.

Snow, Glass, Apples by Neil Gaiman

Thoughts: Very dark, very twisted, wasn't at all what I was expecting. Overall, it was okay.

Persuasion by Jane Austen

Thoughts: I'm slowly plodding my way through all of Jane Austen's works (and my classics shelves in general really). This one had never been high on my anticipated Austen reads list but I actually quite liked it. Parts of it frustrated me but I'm happy I finally read it (the TV adaptation I saw had majorly put me off because the person the person they cast as Anne was annoying and they filmed it in a way that emphasised all of her annoying idiosyncrasies).

On the Road by Jack Kerouac

Thoughts: I'd read dribs and drabs of this one over the years but had never sat down and read it in its entirety until now. Parts of it I did really like. It paints quite the vivid picture of the lives these people lived and parts of the prose really were beautiful (I'm sure most are familiar with the mad ones quote, for example). But I found it quite sad and boring really.

Like these people were desperately searching for something, searching for liberation or inspiration or meaning or something, but I'm not convinced they actually found it but they talk as if they're on some big adventure and romanticize it when really they were just going from place-to-place, party to party, crappy job to crappy job with a bunch of toxic relationships in their wake. Also, just to note, it's a product of its time in regards to racism and misogyny.

...And I think that's all I've read (well, finished) since my last post.

I'm also currently juggling a bunch of books, including but not limited to:

Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, In The Time We Lost by Carrie Hope Fletcher, Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris and a book about the Golden State Killer.

So, expect one of these posts about them (hopefully) soon.


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