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review 2017-01-02 08:07
The Girl with a Clock for a Heart
The Girl with a Clock for a Heart - Peter Swanson

George is having a midlife slump and then his girlfriend from college, who he hasn’t seen in 20ish years, walks into his local bar, needing him to help her out of the mess she’s in.

 

This book felt like a noir movie, but I just couldn’t buy into it. I found the story to be slow, predictable, and trite. This book has two time lines, and I thought that the college time line worked a lot better, which caused the story to drag more for me. George was such a dull character to me that having him as a narrator was painful. Also George at 40 something was basically the same character as George at 18. One thing I did enjoy was the open ending of this story, I was glad to write in an ending that I found less painful than this book.

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text 2016-05-06 20:43
Reading progress update: I've read 37%.
The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley (2015-08-07) - Andrew Michael Hurley

Still waiting for this one to get going and wondering why Stephen King recommended it so highly. I hope there's a payoff by the end.

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review 2016-04-29 05:37
These Shallow Graves
These Shallow Graves - Jennifer Donnelly

Josephine Montfort is just your average turn of the century upper crust girl who wants more from life than marrying an wealthy man and churning out children.  Following her fathers unexpected death she sets out to find out how her father could have died cleaning a revolver. The more she finds out, with the help of a hansom young reporter, the more she sees that there are more things in play than she could have ever expected.

 

Okay this book was fine, it wasn't great though. While the book got better and more interesting as it went it just never really got there. One exciting sequence near the end doesn't make up for the rest of the book being pretty painful. The mystery element was super predictable, the romance was put together much better, but anything meant to evoke emotion felt like I was being beaten about the head. The writing was very tell not show, and heavy handed. Also Jo is unbelievably naive, this is a girl who wants to be a Nellie Bly style reporter, someone who she has said she's read but yet when she gets into the world she seems to know absolutely nothing about the world outside of garden parties.  I enjoyed some of the side characters (Eddie, Oscar, Fay, and surprisingly  Grandmama) while others seemed like throwaways (Her friend from school, Bram, and her Cousins).

 

Eddie and Oscar and the Tailor's crew are the only things that sort of saved this book for me. It's always weird to me when I find the side stories more interesting and important than the main story line in this case I think it's because it's one of the only places I didn't feel like I was being force fed the story. 

 

This book is compared to Libba Bray's work which I get because I got hard core Gemma Doyle trilogy vibes from this book though it isn't at all supernatural and isn't remotely at the same caliber.

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review 2016-04-29 04:28
City of Glass
City of Glass - Cassandra Clare

TLDR: If I was 10 I might have liked these books but at 27 I find them super obnoxious.

 

This book was a hot mess of predictability and really seemed to lack creativity.  I don't know that I'll be picking up any more of these books because they really aren't good, but as I've said before they are really great books for me at the gym because they don't take a lot of mental effort and are mildly interesting and aggravating enough to distract me. Though at one point I was so angry with how Clare was writing Jace that I almost threw my phone. That really isn't a glowing review, but this series is such a mess I really don't get why so many people love it.  I also really wonder if people would love it as much now if they didn't have the nostalgic memories attached to it. Honestly the only person I've liked in this Magnus Bane because he's at least interesting but even he seems far to convenient and he highlights Clare's inability to be subtle with a relationship that shouldn't really be as melodramatic as it is written as.  Seriously I feel like Malec has always felt like Clare writing an after school special on how it's okay to be gay. 

 

The Jace Clary thing was so predictable I called that from book one.  Also the Sebastian thing was the only slightly surprising thing that happened in my opinion. The conflict between the Downworlders and the Clave seemed like a giant plot hole vortex of questions, as did Valentines whole situation. Basically a lot of this book seemed like plot holes and slap dash covers to them.  Also Alec seemed really out of character for most of this book which bothers me more than probably anything else EXCEPT that she killed of the little brother and then deals with it in the most sloppy way. That whole bit felt like she was going for shock value and to get the Lightwoods more invested in the fight against Valentine which just feels totally unnecessary. And then everyone's reaction to it felt so juvenile and basic that I was left wondering yet again why people like these books.

(spoiler show)
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review 2016-04-22 03:09
Heart of Darkness
Heart of Darkness and the Congo Diary - Joseph Conrad

Let’s get right down to it folks: I hate this book. I hate it with a burning passion, and I’m experiencing severe dislike for my English teacher for making me read this pile of shit. She’s a lovely lady, but I don’t understand why she hates me because there’s no other reason as to why she would make me suffer through this book.

 

I know that this is considered to be some great literary masterpiece, and in the words of my teacher, an existentialist novel but watching paint dry is more interesting than this novella.

 

I’ve read a lot of books that were written in the 1900s or set in the 1900s and dealt with racism but none of those books have made me nearly as uncomfortable as Heart of Darkness did. I know, I know, racism is a thing but that doesn’t make me any less uncomfortable by the amount of times the n word was used throughout this novel, or the many times where black people are referred to as “savages,” “enemies.”

 

Moving beyond that, after reading this entire book, word for word, page for page, I cannot tell you not onething about it beyond what my teacher talked about in class. After reading one entire page, I couldn’t tell you what happened on that page. There is a problem here when I can’t tell you what a book is about after reading it. I have no recollection of any of the events that happened in this book.

 

The story didn’t really go anywhere, there wasn’t a point to it, it was just Marlow talking about an adventure that he had which nobody asked to listen to in the first place. By the end of the story, I don’t think anybody on the ship with Marlow, besides the other narrator, even listened to what he said. I know I’m supposed to care about the events that occur and all the symbolism and stuff, but I couldn’t bring myself to care at all.

This is supposed to be deep and meaningful because it talks about human nature and the darkness in our hearts and yada yada yada but I don’t care.

 

I locked myself up in my room for days on end so that I could focus on this novella and absorb it and understand it, and I cannot tell you what happens in this story. I can’t believe trees actually died so this piece of shit work could be printed on it.

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