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review 2018-08-25 05:51
The Death of Mrs. Westaway
The Death of Mrs. Westaway - Ruth Ware

I had some really high hopes for this book because I heard so many things about it and it was hyped up to my knowledge,,,,and I was kind of let down. I expected something that was a lot more suspenseful and had a different tone than the one that was in the book. I don't know how to describe but what I expected wasn't exactly what I got.

My biggest problem with this book is that it's really slow and really boring. I got to the 160 page mark,,,,and nothing of note had happened except for Mrs Warrens being a right pain in the ass. Nothing really picked up until the last 68 pages or so.

I get that the purpose of the slow build was for the big reveal and to real shock us, and believe me, shock me it did. But I think it missed that mark of being just the right pace. I had to keep making myself read this because it was a library book and it has to go back soon. And you really have to make yourself keep reading because this book is just exhausting to get through.

By the time I hit the 280 something page mark of the copy I had, I said fuck it and just skimmed most of what I had remaining and I don't think I missed much. Obviously the juicy stuff I slowed down and read properly but the rest of it, I just didn't care. I spent the entire book hearing about Hal's worries and concerns that by the end I just didn't care about what her next concern was going to be.

And I feel like the bit in the summary made it sound like the entire family was bonkers or serial killers or something when it was really only two people, everyone else was just kind of,,,,,a normal dysfunctional family.

I will say this though, the plot twist at the end, it was wild. My heart started beating so fast I went into fight or flight mode, I'm in the middle of an adrenaline crash as we speak. It was good. It was the only reason I gave this 3 stars.

Pacing aside, the writing was fine, I'm not great with punctuation so if there were any mistakes with it, it completely escaped me. And because of that plot twist ending, I'm gonna go ahead and say that the characters were pretty dang good too. I liked the tarot card reading element of the story since it essentially is the ticket to solving the entire mystery and you don't even notice you've been given the hints the entire time until you get to the end.

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review 2018-04-11 23:09
Laugh till it hurts
Pursuing Carrie (Pretending #3) - Jenn H... Pursuing Carrie (Pretending #3) - Jenn Hype

Pursuing Carrie by Jenn Hype is a fun contemporary romance.  Ms. Hype has given us a well-written book and lots of laughs.  I would rather have read it in third person, but that's a personal preference.  Carrie is a dance instructor and choreographer.  Joe is a cop.  Their story is packed with hilarious, lovable characters, drama, humor and sizzle.  This story grabbed me at page one and entertained me until the end.  I enjoyed this book and look forward to my next book by Jenn Hype.  Pursuing Carrie is book 3 of the Pretending Series but can be read as a standalone.  This is a complete book, not a cliff-hanger.

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review 2018-03-15 17:29
Pachinko, by Min Jin Lee
Pachinko - Min Jin Lee

It took me almost four months to read Pachinko. As I read, I began wondering about my slow pace. My fall semesters are busier, yes, but I still manage to finish most books in what's a timely manner for me. It certainly wasn't because I found the book hard to read in terms of comprehension or engagement. As I got closer to the end, I realized: it was because I was so invested in the characters and storytelling I had to take time to process the intense feelings the novel evoked. There are also regular gaps in time that take place between chapters where characters' situations change significantly; I needed mental space before diving into the story again. I can't think of another novel that required this sort of reading from me.

 

In addition to Rushdie's The Moor's Last Sigh, Pachinko has served to establish that "family sagas" can engage me, or at least when another culture is involved. Through the family portrayed here, I learned more about Korea, but it never feels like a history lesson. Everything comes from the characters. The novel also provokes thought about national and racial identity.

 

There were moments I dreaded, as with the return of a less sympathetic character, though not in a way that made me dislike the novel or its author. There were moments that shocked me to the point of gasping. There are many scenes that easily and vividly come to mind when I recall my reading, which I finished more than a month ago.

 

I would love to teach this novel. I have the feeling I may reread it some day, regardless. For me, that's a rarity, a compliment, and a sign of deep gratitude. 

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review 2018-02-15 07:06
How we overestimate technological change
Future Hype: The Myths of Technology Change - Bob Seidensticker

This is a fascinating yet flawed book. Robert Seidensticker's argument is that people have long overestimated the speed of technological change, which he demonstrates by surveying the decades of grandiose predictions that have fallen flat. From them he derives a series of "high-tech myths" that serve as a commonality running through many of these overestimates, before concluding by drawing some conclusions as to why people do that and how they might avoid making such mistakes in the future. Seidensticker's thesis is a credible one, and his examples show how it has merit, but his analysis suffers from a degree of confirmation bias by cherry-picking his examples and ignoring or glancing over ones which might require a greater degree of qualification. Had he pursued a more nuanced study he might have produced a more valuable examination of human reaction to technological change, though it would probably not have been as forceful as what he does provide his readers

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review 2017-12-19 22:07
Plenty of angst
Playing Stacy (Pretending #2) - Jenn Hyp... Playing Stacy (Pretending #2) - Jenn Hype

Playing Stacy by Jenn Hype is a good read.  Ms. Hype has delivered a well-written book.  If you are a fan of angst, this book's for you.  I'm not a fan of an overabundance of angst.  I'm also not a fan of alternating point of view formats, and this one also has that.  Other than Stacy's sometimes exaggerated shenanigans, I can't say anything else bad about the book.  I did enjoy the humor.  Ms. Hype also did a great job on the characters in this book.  Stacy is a hot mess.  Officer Chad doesn't find her antics amusing and locks her in jail to sober up.  Their story is a rollercoaster of good times and bad.  I actually enjoyed reading Playing Stacy, but I feel like it did drag out a bit.  Playing Stacy is a complete book, not a cliff-hanger.

 

 

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