J.K. Rowling: The Casual Vacancy

The Casual VacancyThe Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I picked the 2 stars because there are no 2,5. Because I’m not sure I liked it. Or maybe I don’t want to like it.

The characters, all trapped in their silly little lifes and drama nobody cares for are undeniably human and well written, but they annoyed me so much, that I wondered why I bothered reading on (and yes, annoying me as a reader might be intentional). I get it. Life is fucked, people are hypocrites and don’t I know it, I’ve been unemployed too. But not everyone is, in real life anyways, and taking out one person out of the equation might but doesn’t have to, tip the balance as much as Barry Fairbrother’s death did (let’s not get into speaking names, shall we) and yes, there’s Kay for instance, but still… Also, all the dieing is a bit too much. I don’t think it was necessary to get the point across, that people are biased, egoistic, caught up in their own lifes, fallible and often, suck.

And yet, it did affect me.

So, I honestly don’t know.

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John Green: The Fault in our stars

The Fault in Our StarsThe Fault in Our Stars by John Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am hesitant to read books that have been widely claimed as amazing. So often I’m disappointed when reading them. So, I put this one off.

Let me just say, this time I wasn’t disappointed. Even though (and especially towards the end) the characters sometimes seemed too good to be true, it triggered all the emotions and I sobbed into my e-reader. I loved the humor. I’m not usually taken in with love stories, but this one worked.

As I stared it I wanted to give up on ever becoming a writer. But then I forced myself to remember all the bad writing that is published and I have regained a grain of hope. (That’s the curse of reading really good books. They screamed at me, unintentionally I know; that I suck. *lol*)

Anyway: if you haven’t read this, give it a go. It won’t disappoint. Break your heart, yes, but not in a bad way.

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Christopher Paolini: Brisingr

Brisingr  (The Inheritance Cycle, #3)Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This one started much much better and really had my attention. I also read through it quicker, which translates as me not labouring over it. Also, by now I know which passages to skip. E.g. It would have been enough for me to have Roran sum up his ‚adventures‘ to Eragon over the wedding cake or something. No need to have them in such detail (and yes I know they are there to show character and mood, but honestly, I got it as Roran left Carvahall behind, I didn’t need his Conan-esque behaviour to be shown it all the detail).
But yes, better. More entertaining, but still too slow-paced for me.

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Christopher Paolini: Eldest

Eldest (The Inheritance Cycle, #2)Eldest by Christopher Paolini
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I still think that he drew too much on Tolkien’s characters (Beor Mountains, e.g.). It was also too much detail for me and therefore to slow paced. I did skip some paragraphs or only cross-read them. The end was gripping, yes, but to get there took time. Lots of time.

Also, those lovesick boys…*le sigh*…grow up and learn to deal with a no. I also think, that the author misses out on creating some stronger women. Why do the people in Carvahall treat women as grown-up children who need a man to take care of them and who don’t own anything except some cutlery and who, if they don’t own that, lose worth? Not a society I’d want to live in.

Moving on to book three. I shall finish the series.

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Isaac MArion: Warm bodies

Warm Bodies (Warm Bodies, #1)Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Let me tell you what I didn’t like:

– Julie…I don’t think she is particularly well-written. Why did she not try to punch R’s head in the minute she got a chance? As soon as she was in the plane, she should have shown some fight. Com’on. One zombie. That should be doable, especially since he wouldn’t have expected it.

– I know, it’s a random detail but…zombies ate your boyfriend. And you apply lipgloss before going out to find food with another zombie? because lipgloss lasts for about 10 minutes but since R tasted it on the bottle, it must be really fresh and I can’t think of any woman who’d do that.

– he lost me at one of the guards asking the other guard Are you a pussy? to tell him off for being weak. That is when I wanted to shut the book and stop reading because this explains to me, why Julie is not a strong female character (she can cry and be depressed and cut herself, these aren’t signs of weakness, but she’s just…not very well rounded if you ask me). Any (male) author who takes something female to illustrate weakness does not get any second chance. You should reflect more on the words you use.

– com’on, hit me over the head with the Romeo & Juliet rip-offs, because I didn’t get it. I mean, anyone who didn’t get it from the names, the balcony, Nora (=nurse) must have got it at the ‚opposites attract‘ thingy or at the direct quote (What’s in a name). Please, don’t. Because the play IS NOT A FUCKING LOVE-STORY! And neither is this story. Friendship: maybe. Tolerance: maybe. But love…hell no. Human-eating person who killed other person’s boyfriend and then abducts her (to keep her save, hah)… there’s a name for that: Stockholm Syndrome.

So…I can believe in the zombie apocalypse. I can believe in the setting, the way civilization behaves etc. I can even believe in R’s (re-)actions. But since I cannot believe in anything Julie (or Nora) does, the story lose plausibility. I can believe a lot of things, but not the way she acts or reacts.

And therefore it made barely two stars (I should stay away from books that are turned into movies. I usually tend to be unimpressed by them). (And because of sexism)

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