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text 2018-12-02 18:23
November Reading Round Up
Things Slip Through - Kevin Lucia
Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins
Hollow Shell: A Zombie Epic - Part One - Mark C. Scioneaux
Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues - Diana Rowland
V for Vendetta - David Lloyd,Alan Moore
The Lesser Dead - Christopher Buehlman
A Monster Calls - Patrick Ness,Jason Isaacs
After: First Light - Scott Nicholson
The Wind in the Willows (Kindle in Motion) - Kenneth Grahame
The Rose Master - Valentina Cano

 

 

I've missed a lot of round ups this year so thought I should post at least a couple before the end of the year.

 

Just the 10 reads for me this month, but only 1 comic was included so that's a plus.

 

Yearly Reading Challenge update - 122/140

 

Read in November - 10

 

Audio - 0

Novels/novella/short stories - 9

Comics/Graphic novels - 1

 

5*

 

Things Slip Through - Kevin Lucia  A Monster Calls - Patrick Ness,Jason Isaacs  

 

4.5*

 

Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues - Diana Rowland  The Lesser Dead - Christopher Buehlman  

 

4*

 

Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins  V for Vendetta - David Lloyd,Alan Moore  After: First Light - Scott Nicholson  

 

 

3.5*

 

The Wind in the Willows (Kindle in Motion) - Kenneth Grahame  

 

3*

 

Hollow Shell: A Zombie Epic - Part One - Mark C. Scioneaux  The Rose Master - Valentina Cano  

 

 

Just gearing up for the end of the year now, I'm pretty much done with my Christmas shopping and only have to post a couple of presents off to Oz for friends. 

 

I'm working this Christmas which is shit and I've noted in my recent pay that it has STILL not been sorted which now makes it 6 months of management pissing around. 

In all honesty I don't think I can stay there full time anymore, I've really hit my limit and the frustration of several elements is driving me insane. 

Next year will bring a few changes work wise but I'm not quite sure what that will be at the moment. 

 

I'm off on leave at the moment and tomorrow I'm taking Boo to the vet to have her neutered so I'm feeling a little anxious about her having an anaesthetic. I'm sure Suzy will love this as it will give her several hours of peace and quiet.

 

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review 2018-11-04 17:43
Mockingjay
Mockingjay (The Final Book of The Hunger Games) - Suzanne Collins

The 3rd and last instalment to the series sees Katniss in District 13. She is the 'Mockingjay' a symbol of the rebellion against the Capital. A group of rebel soldiers including Gale and a severely traumatised Peeta are with Katniss for a PR promo when they get pulled into the Capital and a new 'arena'.
A very fast read that I enjoyed a lot but left me thinking that Katniss is a deeply unlikeable person on so many levels. I got a little fed up of her always wanting to be the martyr, imagining that everything happened because of her or her actions, completely forgetting that people have their own agency.
That being said I still enjoyed this a lot but less so than the other books.

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text 2016-10-01 19:16
2016 Reading Challenge- End of September Update
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope - William Kamkwamba,Bryan Mealer
The Fifth Elephant (Discworld, #24) - Terry Pratchett
Rogue Heroes: The History of the SAS, Britain's Secret Special Forces Unit That Sabotaged the Nazis and Changed the Nature of War - Ben Macintyre
The Story of Patriarchs and Prophets - As Illustrated in the Lives of Holy Men of Old - Ellen G. White
Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins
The Gifts of the Jews: How a Tribe of Desert Nomads Changed the Way Everyone Thinks and Feels - Thomas Cahill
Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power - Jon Meacham
Well September turned out to be a really good reading month for me.  In the calendar month alone I started and completed five books as well as completed two books I had started at the end of August or earlier in the year.  This month I completed my Goodreads Reading Challenge by achieving and surpassing 30 never-before read books for the year.  My overall total so far is 39 and by this time next week I will have finished The Book of Mormon completing my challenge.
 
October is probably going to be pretty silent from me on reviews, The Book of Mormon not withstanding, because my next book is The Count of Monte Cristo which is 1256 pages.  So I might be doing some miscellaneous posts that I have been wanting to write for my WordPress blog and sharing them here as well. 
 
1) Revolutionary Heart by Diane Eickoff [LibraryThing Early Reviewers]
2) The Complete Sherlock Holmes, Volume II by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
-> The Ice Dragon by George R.R. Martin
3) A Short History of Byzantium by John Julius Norwich
4) Feet of Clay by Terry Pratchett
5) A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin- REREAD
-> The Separation of Church and State edited by Forrest Church
6) The Crusades Through Arab Eyes by Amin Maalouf
7) Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
8) Hogfather by Terry Pratchett
-> Before the Storm by Rick Perlstein- REREAD
-> We the People by Juan Williams [LibraryThing Early Reviewers]
9) Nixonland by Rick Perlstein- REREAD
-> Blood Stain (Volume One) by Linda Sejic
10) The Invisible Bridge by Rick Perlstein
--> Oddly Normal Book 3 by Otis Frampton
11) Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll
12) Jingo by Terry Pratchett
--> Jefferson's America by Julie M. Fenster [LibraryThing Early Reviewers]
13) The Sworn Sword: The Graphic Novel by George R.R. Martin, Mike S. Miller, & Ben Avery
14) Legends II: Dragon, Sword, and King edited by Robert Silverberg- REREAD of The Sworn Sword
15) Marlborough: His Life and Times Book One by Winston Churchill
16) The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
17) The Last Continent by Terry Pratchett
18) How the Irish Saved Civilization by Thomas Cahill- REREAD
19) Marlborough: His Life and Times Book Two by Winston Churchill
--> The Poetry of Robert Frost
--> Seventh-day Adventists Believe by General Conference of SDA
20) Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
21) Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchett
22) A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin- REREAD
23) The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba
24) Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
--> Rogue Heroes by Ben Macintyre [LibraryThing Early Reviewers]
--> Patriarchs and Prophets by Ellen G. White
25) The Fifth Elephant by Terry Pratchett
26) The Gifts of the Jews by Thomas Cahill- REREAD
27) Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power by Jon Meacham
28) The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
29) The Truth by Terry Pratchett
30) Warriors I edited by George R.R. Martin- REREAD of The Mystery Knight
31) The Black Count by Tom Reiss
32) The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins
33) Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett
34) Desire of the Everlasting Hills by Thomas Cahill- REREAD
35) The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Vol. 1 by Edward Gibbon
36) Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavendra
37) The Last Hero by Terry Pratchett
38) A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin- REREAD
39) The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Vol. 2 by Edward Gibbon
40) The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
 
Also reading:
The Book of Mormon (86%)
The Waste Land and Other Poems by T.S. Eliot (24%)
Prophets and Kings (16%)
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review 2016-09-19 00:37
Mockingjay (THG #3)
Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins

The nation of Panem collapses into a state of civil war and both sides are looking towards for the appearance of the Mockingjay.  The final installment of Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games trilogy finds Katniss Everdeen contemplating her role in the fight against the Capitol along with coming to terms with everything that has been going on her life the last two years.

 

The book begins with Katniss in the ashen rubble of her home District 12 before returning to the underground stronghold of the once thought to be destroyed District 13 where she’s amongst a political struggle for her face on the rebellion.  But it is only after seeing a Capitol controlled Peeta that Katniss begins promoting the rebel cause.  Over the course of the book, Katniss is mentally and physically tested by not only the conditions but also propaganda moves by President Snow via Peeta until the rebellion rescues him, only for everyone to find out he is not himself.  Through the rest of the book, Katniss’ battles both military and political forces in her personal mission to end the war and Snow so those she loves can live in peace.  Yet victory comes at such a high cost that it truly breaks Katniss more than the Hunger Games or anything else.

 

Given where the end of the previous book ended, Mockingjay has to start slowly before getting into a flow similar to the first book of the trilogy.  In fact, Mockingjay is truly the better follow up to The Hunger Games than Catching Fire as Katniss truly comes to terms with everything she has previously and currently going through, so much so that it seems that she is having a slow motion mental breakdown before hitting rock bottom.

 

In the final chapter of The Hunger Games trilogy, Suzanne Collins gives a satisfying and well-written conclusion to Katniss’ story.  If not for the slow start, Mockingjay would be on the same level as the first book.  If you’ve read and enjoyed The Hunger Games then make it through Catching Fire to see why Mockingjay is so fantastic.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2016-08-26 10:47
Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins

Considering the very high quality of the opening books, this resolution to the "Hunger Games"-saga was a bit of a downlet.

 

First of all, the book was too long - it reminded me a bit of the Harry Potter books that got ever longer but with less plot. Granted, some details were added that definitely contributed to the main story, such as what really happened to Finnick and Haymitch after they won their respective Games, details which explain why they joined the rebellion and also how the Capitol maintained such a strong hold on the districts. And I also liked the overall numbness Katniss feels, the panic attacks at just smelling roses, the growing distance between her and Gale, and her realization that she loves Peeta, the feeling of loss at his being "hijacked". The comparison that the civil war is almost like another Hunger Games, with traps like in the Arena placed all around the Capitol, works astonishingly well.

 

Still, the scenes in district 13 drag out too long, and all the action (and their consequences!) is compressed into a few pages. Katniss is used by Coin and Plutarch, and, when the districts are won, left to die, preferably at the hands of Peeta - and if that doesn't work, killing off Prim by sending her off into war, should push her over the edge. And it does - as Plutarch predicted, but Coin miscalculated.

 

The book glosses over the mentionned consequences as Katniss's killing Coin is explained away by temporary insanity brought on by loss and war. I'd have wished for a more elaborate discourse here because the question of what to do with rebel leaders, of how to make the transition to peace and not just to perpetuate the status quo under new leadership, is a relevant one, as evidenced by the news every day. So this should have been better explored, because the fight isn't everything, it's the way things are done when the fighting is over that determine the future.

 

Overall, a highly recommendable trilogy, even if the conclusion could have been handled better.

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