Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Read and To-Read

As promised, I’m back again with a book post! I think this is the first time I’ve posted about books here, which is a little odd, since it was supposed to be one of the main reasons I made this blog… Oh well, here it is now!

I want to let you know about some of the most important books in my very long To-Read list, but first, I thought it would be cool to show and tell you a little bit about the last few books I read (not for class). I was going to give you blurbs about the plot of each, but that would take up a lot of space. Instead, I’m going to link you to the Good Reads page, and if you’re interested you can find the blurbs there:

1. “Bleach” by Kubo Tite

I’m going to count these all under one, since I’ve read tons of them, there are tons more to go, and they are very quick to read through. Bleach is a Manga, which, for those who don’t know, is essentially a Japanese comic book. They have a very distinctive style, which, to be honest, I used to hate to death, and am still not all that thrilled with. However, if you can get past the style, or if you like it, the story to Bleach is pretty interesting.

Stereotypically, this is probably a “boy book”—there’s lots of action and fighting, and the majority of the main characters are male. But I love tons of stereotypically boy-things, so that wasn’t going to stop me, and it really shouldn’t stop anyone. It’s got action and fighting, as I said, as well as pretty good characterization, plot, drama, magic, and humor.

I’m not finished yet, and as I said, there’s a lot to this manga, so it’s difficult to review. It’s definitely interesting, though, and worth a try. If you don’t have access to manga in stores near you, you can read translations online. Bleach is massive, so it’s not hard to find. One good place to read it, though, is Manga Panda.

2. “A Study In Scarlet” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

I read this one for free on my tablet, so it doesn’t technically have a cover, but it looks prettier this way =P

Anyways, I started reading this because of Sherlock, which is a show you must have heard of if you live on the internet, but if you haven’t its wonderful, look it up. (By Steven Moffat, starting Benedict Cumberbatch). It is actually surprisingly close to the show, so it was really easy to read and interesting. My only problem with this story in particular, which includes a narrative of how Sherlock and Watson meet, is that, in the second half, it deviates from the original story for a very long time, without any promise of returning to the original point, until it suddenly does very close to the end. Other than that though, this was a fun read!

3. “Lord of the Rings” by J. R. R. Tolkien

Without a doubt, one of my very favourite books and stories. I’ve read it a couple times before when I was a kid, but I hadn’t read it since middle school. After years of only experiencing the movies, which are also fantastic, it was really cool to re-read these books and be reminded of all the extra awesomeness that was never in the movies. Tolkien is just such a wonderful author. His descriptions are just insanely beautiful, his word choice is perfect. Maybe it’s because I did read them as a kid (with my mom. I’m cool, okay? Don’t judge), but for some reason, re-reading this book (and yes, technically it’s one novel, not a trilogy, but that’s a bit of a technicality) is just comforting. I literally forget everything else and feel so immersed in its world. If you’ve never read The Lord of the Rings, I definitely suggest you give them a go. Especially if you love fantasy and/or descriptive fiction. Tolkien is practically the father of modern fantasy novels!

4. “Silver Linings Playbook” by Matthew Quick

I meant to read this before seeing the movie, but, because of school, I ended up going to see the movie first. If you haven’t seen it yet, what are you waiting for? It’s fantastic! And it would be fantastic even without Jennifer Lawrence, but of course it’s better for her being in it! =P

Anyways, when I finally did get around to reading this book, I was a little surprised to find out how differently the story is presented. The point of view in the movie is much more objective, whereas the book is narrated by Pat, the protagonist, himself. That’s Bradley Cooper’s character, if you were wondering. However, despite that and numerous other small differences between this book and the movie, I loved it. It was fantastic. I definitely suggest experiencing both the movie and the book for what they are, because they are both great individually.

5. “Divergent” and “Insurgent” by Veronica Roth

These are the first two books in a trilogy and I love them. The next book comes out in October, and I’ve already pre-ordered it so it will come straight to my door when it’s available!  This trilogy is a teen/young adult dystopian story, somewhat similar to the Hunger Games, but with very important differences. The biggest similarity, in my opinion, is that they are both dystopian novels aimed at teenagers, probably teenage girls, since the protagonists are female.

Either way, though, these books are emotional, intense, exciting, and a great read. Also, they were surprisingly quick reads for me, despite their page count. I’m super excited for the final instalment, as well as for the Divergent movie that is supposed to be coming out soon. Don’t be discouraged because these are teen books, I think there’s a lot in them for everyone to enjoy.



1. “The Selection” by Kiera Cass

Another young adult dystopian-style novel/series. I read the first three chapters of this from a sampler ebook from the Google Play store and fell in love. My friend bought me the book and I can’t wait to get back into it after my assignments are all handed in!

2. “A Game of Thrones” by George R. R. Martin

I’m sure you already know about these if you don’t live under a rock. These are the books that spawned the intense, heartbreaking, funny, dramatic, exciting, and bloody fantastic show by the same name. These books are huge, and often compared to the Lord of the Rings, which I told you my love of earlier, so I’m super excited to try reading them, especially since I love the show so much! I do suspect that this series will be much more character driven than LotR, though, which is more focused on plot, but I’m sure I’ll love it just the same!

3. “Delirium” by Lauren Oliver

You may notice a trend in some of my choices by now; this is another teen dystopian series. I found this one through the same sampler, I believe, as The Selection above. If you’re interested in either of these books but unsure of them, you could definitely get the same sampler and try out the first couple chapters.

4. "It's Kind of a Funny Story" by Ned Vizzini

This is a book I’ve wanted to read for a few years now. I think I first heard about it in a magazine, randomly. Its about this kid who has some mental issues, at least partly from school and social stress, but it sounds like its more than that. I’m looking forward to it, so I hope I finally get to it soon.

5. “The God Delusion” by Richard Dawkins

Sometimes I hate Richard Dawkins for being a little rude and arrogant, and sometimes he is hilarious and kinda my hero. Considering this is one of the biggest books about atheism, I thought it would be interesting to read, and I bought it from Value Village a while back, but haven’t had a chance to read it. However, it’s one of the textbooks for my one class this next semester, so that’s a great opportunity to finally read it!

6. “Troilus and Cressida” by Geoffrey Chaucer

I think I picked up this old book from my favourite used bookstore in Downtown Vancouver. If I remember correctly, its an Arthurian story, though that might be a guess. It is definitely, however, a story that Shakespeare later re-wrote in one of his lesser known plays. I know from the Canterbury Tales that I kinda like Chaucer’s style, so I wanted to read this story through him, not Shakespeare. Also, old books smell good…

7. “Warm Bodies” by Isaac Marion

I picked this book up when I first heard about the movie, because the concept interested me. The movie doesn’t really interest me, because it looks like a weird comedy, but what I’ve heard about the book is that it’s a bit more serious and drama/romancy, whereas the movie is funny. I think I’m much more likely to enjoy the more serious version, espeically because zombies aren’t usually my thing.

8. “An Abundance of Katherines” by John Green

I love John Green to death. If you haven’t read any of his books, or checked him and his brother out on YouTube (they are the vlogbrothers), you’re missing out on life. John’s books are hilarious, heart-warming, and heartbreaking. . . sometimes all at the same time. This is my best friend’s second favourite after The Fault In Our Stars (Also my favourite), and the only one that he didn’t collaborate with another author on that I haven’t read, so I’ve bought this one and it’s waiting on my shelves for me.

9. “Sacred Hearts” by Sarah Dunant

I read “The Birth of Venus” in highschool, by the same author, and I loved it. This is one of the few adult books on my list. It’s set in the Renaissance, which is one of the most fascinating periods of history in my opinion, and I know I love Dunant’s writing style, so I’m looking forward to this book.

10. “The Lucky One” by Nicholas Sparks

Finally, because I think 10 is probably more than enough, I have this one. I bought this ages ago to read as fluff during a semester break, but never got around to it. Since then, I’ve seen the movie, which was beautiful, so I’m looking forward to reading the book even more. I love Nicholas Spark’s books; they’re very romantic, fluffy, sometimes sad, and always well-written. Or at least, I’ve never had reason to complain about one. They may be predictable, but I see no problem with that.


If this interested you, and you want to stalk my reading more often and more efficiently, you can add me on GoodReads here:

Thanks for reading!

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