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review 2014-11-20 14:56
A Whole New Crowd
A Whole New Crowd - Tijan

One thing that I can say I loved about this book – the cover.

 

The rest is well.....Tijan.

 

I have read a lot of her books in the past, and I have to say she is tragically repetitive. What blew me away in her first novels, disappointed me in the rest, because she seems to use the same ingredients for each and every novel she writes. Considering that she wrote quite a few, you wind up with the same old routine, but different costumes. It gets old real quick.

 

Her preferences are creating deeply traumatized female characters in some form of social isolation. That social isolation can be real, with the character having limited friends, or self-imposed with the character's perceived disentanglement from society due to past issues that affect her current mental state. Tijan also uses the character's history to portray emotional maturity that reaches above normally expected standards in a younger group of people. That on it's own is nothing new, and often used, because our past defines us all, but what Tijan doesn't allow are the same standards for her supporting characters.

 

The heroine, in this book that would be Taryn, interacts with a large number of supporting female characters, and all of them are found lacking in some way. Taryn often observes conversations and social situations, then provides inner monologue dissecting the reasoning behind the behavior of those characters, and even if it's not outright mockery, the observations often point out need for social acceptance and romantic happiness in a condescending kind of way. The emotional maturity doesn't stretch out the supporting female characters, even by the way of common sense, as they are often portrayed as shallow, promiscuous and petty. Even the closest friends and family in the main character's inner circle often display cruelty, selfishness and willful lack of understanding. All of that is carefully layered with the purpose of setting the main character apart, and proving just how different, and by her way of understanding better she is then everybody else.

 

With all the females portrayed (and effectively eliminated as competition, both mentally and physically) as catty, overly feminine (in a bad way), immature or simply stupid, we are left with a need find a balance for Taryn. That balance comes in the shape of our leading male character – Trey.The male character shows acceptance of our heroine trough intense sexuality, and serves as a focus to sharpen the uniqueness of the heroine. Since Taryn is a league of her own, it is only natural that she gets the alpha male specimen of the entire possible cast. The rich, beautiful, womanizing, i-don't-give-a-shit-about-anything, unrepentant bad boy, that won't be tamed by any woman. Except our leading lady, but that is to be expected, as she is the only one female in a 200 mile radius, armed with an IQ that's higher then the current room temperature.

 

Second signature Tijan's focus is obsession with social status. But it really didn't work in this particular book. Taryn gets involved in unmasking of a drug lord, solving a murder and kidnapping, then follows up with her own criminal activity. All of this is set in a high school environment, where the food chain is mercilessly displayed of having life changing impact. Tijan's leading characters, purposely or not, always wind up on the top of the IN crowd, getting respect and often steam-rolling over any competition. The depth of character, emotional maturity and the aim of accomplishing strong individuality in Taryn clashes with juvenile descriptions of school hierarchy and how desperately important they are. When in fact, they are not. Social grouping happens everywhere, but in Tijan's world it's often portrayed as the second most important thing after the life experiences of her leading characters. In 'A whole new crowd' that created a feeling of kids playing adults (especially when Trey said to Taryn that he was expected by the entire school to deal with her after she insulted the 'top' crowd) that didn't allow the reader to appreciate the dangerous story she tried to tell.

 

All in all, this was a different type of novel for Tijan. I was recommended this novel with the promise that Taryn is tamer as a character, and that it doesn't have such a desperate feel that follows her other novels. In a sense, that was true, but still, I expected more.

 

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review 2014-11-13 21:25
Daughter of Smoke & Bone - Laini Taylor

Urgh...i know i am going to get a lot of grief for this, but i have to say i didn't like it. Not that it didn't have potential, or a damned good story. It did, in fact it had tonnes.

So why oh why couldn't i get into it???

 

Inconsistencies, and terrible WTF-ery are to blame for drilling so many holes, that eventually sunk this ship...

 

What i thought was truly awesome and original was the world in witch Karou grew up, her art, Brimstone, Kishmish and all the rest. One of my favorites was the living puppet, that scene took the show. The magical portal between two worlds, and the nuances in between were so cleverly designed, that i must say that the first few chapters had me glued to the novel. Karou's innocence in a way, and her very human reaction to the possibility of having a wish within your grasp. The concept of Brimstone, a different being, a wielder of magic, a tooth-fairy like you never seen before. The originality of it all, and the superb execution of it, promised a very fun ride.

 

Sadly it didn't stay that way.

 

The deeper i got into this story the less sense it made. It seemed so elaborate in the beginning, but then it started to slack off, and i found some of the explanations, well, kinda....unbelievable.

 

I know friendships, i know some friends are more understanding then the rest, but for the love of god, i just can't, can't, can't stomach the idea of the mega-super-uber-totes-frosty-beyond-fab-BFF who takes all the supernatural other-worldliness you might throw at them with a simple grin, and a cheesy one-liner.

 

1."I grew up as a Devil's spawn!"....

 

2."Oh my Gaaaawd! That's like, totally awesome, no biggie."

 

1."There's a world you don't know about, right outside your window, and people can get killed or mutilated by forces unknown to man."

 

2."GTFO, are those new highlights? Like, guuuuuurl..."

 

1."This is a supernatural creature, it's an unknown, it's powers are unknown, it has HURT me in the past, some could say it wanted to kill me."

 

2."Uh-huh, did you guys hook up? You totes need to hook up, does he have a brother?"

 

Not just the BFF, but her boyfriend too, nobody here bats a frigging eyelid over the actual existence of angels and demons here.

 

Makes sense??? Nope, to me either, yet it happens, and when authors do that, i simply disconnect. It goes from being an awesome story, to a cheesy TV show with a cheesy predictable ending. My respect for common sense of the storyline diminishes, therefore my respect for the story as a whole suffers.

 

Brimstone made her filthy rich....how? Did she receive a letter from Satan & Son Solicitors, in regards to his Last Will and Testament, to be opened in the case of his otherworldly demise by angelic fire? Or did she simply pull it out of her arse?

 

The blatant disregard for common sense continues with flights throughout a brimming metropolitan city, sitting on a cathedral, fights in the air, all and i mean all with witnesses aplenty, cameras rolling, and only a few cursory questions asked. Her wandering with no actual goal, no actual idea, no actual PLAN is childish. Too childish for me to stay interested. So sorry, this is a 2 star review for me, and nope, i won't read any more of it either.

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text 2014-04-22 11:11
The Koyal Group InfoMag: Fra Taiwan, kampen mod Alzheimers

 

Fra Taiwan, en længe håbet For gennembruddet i kampen mod Alzheimers

 

Oplysning: Jeg ejer lager i AstraZeneca, et af de selskaber, der nævnes i denne kommentar.

 

Seks Taiwan-baserede forskere har annonceret, hvad der kan være en længe håbet for gennembruddet i kampen mod Alzheimers sygdom. De har opdaget, at såkaldt statiner, medicin udviklet oprindeligt for at sænke kolesteroltallet, synes at reducere risikoen for demens ved så meget som en fjerdedel.

 

Team, ledet af Jui-Ming Chen af Asien Universitet i Taichung og Cheng-Wei Chang af Hsing Wu universitetet i Taipei, har netop offentliggjort sine resultater i PLOSONE, en peer-reviewed åben adgang journal af Public Library Science (PLOS).

 

Det er tidlige dage endnu, selvfølgelig, og det faktum, at statiner er forbundet med en nedsat risiko for Alzheimers kan ikke, de er den kausale agens i forebyggelse.

 

Ikke desto mindre bidrager resultaterne til en voksende erkendelse af at opdagelsen af statiner udgør en af de vigtigste udviklinger i moderne farmakologiske historie. Opdagelsen blev gjort i begyndelsen af 1970 ' erne af Akira Endo, biokemiker arbejder for Tokyo-baserede Sankyo Company. Endo blev tildelt den prestigefyldte Lasker prisen i 2008.

 

Udover Sankyo omfatter andre japanske selskaber, der har spillet en central rolle i udviklingen af statiner Nissan kemiske industrier, Kowa lægemidler og Shionogi.

 

I USA, er de mest almindelige former for statiner lavet af, blandt andre selskaber, Pfizer (under brandname Lipitor), Merck (Zocor) og Bristol-Myers Squibb (Pravachol). Andre versioner er tilgængelige fra schweizisk-baserede Novartis og britisk-baserede AstraZeneca.

 

Generiske versioner er lavet af Teva af Israel og Ranbaxy i Indien.

 

Vi hoster nyheder af opdagelser i forskellige områder af videnskaben her.

Source: www.forbes.com/sites/eamonnfingleton/2014/04/14/from-taiwan-a-long-hoped-for-breakthrough-in-the-fight-against-alzheimers
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review 2014-03-17 03:44
NOTHING LEFT TO LOSE BY: KRISTY MOSELEY
Nothing Left to Lose - Kirsty Moseley


   Nothing to lose....but a few hours of your life trying to get to the good parts. Just kidding, kinda. There was a good story here, it just got buried under a lot of filer angst and some pretty disturbing codependency issues. It bummed me out. 

   Anna was a broken girl, she witnessed the boy she loved being murdered and then was kidnapped, raped and horrifically abused by his murderer.....for months.  It was a heart wrenching story, and I could truly understand why Anna was as tortured as she was when she finally returned home.  There were some things I really liked about her, she was a very strong person, thoughtful, and even funny at times. She just had so many troubling issues, and I really would have liked to see hear really healing from these rather than just substituting some of them for an unhealthy relationship.


   Ashton. Yeah, I don't even know what to say about him, I guess I'll start with a few positives. He could be very sweet to Anna a lot of the time, he was very brave, was pretty much the most talented SWAT guy out there, and he was supposed to be ridiculously gorgeous. He really could be such a nice guy, but man oh man I had some really big things that bothered me about him. Really about both him and Anna both in general.

 Anna and Ashton both had some major codependency issues and I'm sorry but that is not what a healthy love looks like. It worries me that this is what some people consider being in love, that you can't even sleep, eat, or lead a normal existence whatsoever because you're not around the other person. I did kind of understand where some of it was coming from after what Anna had gone through, but it seems a shame to put all of her healing and reason for getting better onto someone else rather than that being something she accomplished for herself. Ashton was no better. He was almost as dependent on Anna as she was on him. I also found it a extremely distasteful that after practically just meeting Anna and knowing all that she had been through and her extreme aversion to being touched by anyone, he literally trapped her on her bed holding her down and rested on top of her, telling her "I won't hurt you, I promise. Trust me.". What the hell kind of asshole does that?? I'm not even kidding, that boiled my blood reading that.


   Now I just have to point out a couple other things that baffled me in this story. Ultimately no one but him could protect Anna, not even trained Secret Service agents. In fact said Secret Service agents were basically so poorly trained and incompetent that even Anna herself, that had a taken some self defense and karate classes for awhile, could take them down. At one point when she was sparing with one the agents, after she had bested him a few times he made the comment "Er, I don't know that shit, I know how to street fight." What the hell kind of Secret Service agent only knows how to street fight? That's absurd and I'm sure very insulting to those actually HIGHLY TRAINED men and women in that department. Also, how was Anna's past so well hidden from everyone, including the press?? Especially when they were in the public eye to the extreme once Anna's dad's career skyrocketed.  Let's be real, her story would have been known to all at the very beginning.  The way our media operates, they can't resist a good horror story. Another thing is for Anna to even believe for one minute that all they had between them was because of his job was absurd. Pretending in the public that he's her boyfriend is a lot different between being intimate and getting hot and heavy behind closed doors.  He wasn't there as a glorified prostitute.

   I know it's sounding after all that like a lot of negative, but really like I said at the beginning, there was a good story at the core of this. I just wished it would have played out differently. I think probably the most important thing that could have made this book MUCH better for me, would have been if it wasn't so damn drawn out between Anna and Ashton. 200 pages of this could have been cut out and I think it would have improved it in my eyes. To have the back and forth between them carry out for that long was just agonizing at a certain point, and not in a way that could be paid off at the end. It was too excessive. I kept waiting and waiting for the inevitable show down with Carter to happen, and every time Ashton went away for a weekend or even an hour I was praying that would FINALLY be the time.

Unfortunately the showdown didn't make an appearance until the bitter end, and I'm talking damn near the 90% mark. And it was over way too soon. It was disappointing to me, I knew it was coming eventually and I looked forward to it. I might have been happy with what we had got, if there hadn't bee 400 pages of Anna and Ashton's flip floppy romance in between.  I really feel if that would have been condensed that would have easily taken this book into a higher 3 star rating for me.

Too much blah blah blah...

It's just such a bummer, because I really feel that this story line had incredible potential, but the execution was so sloppy that it ruined a lot of that for me. But I am clearly in the minority in my feelings on this, as this book has an average rating of over 4 stars on here. I'm glad that others found more enjoyment in this than I did, cause it just didn't work for me as well as it could have.

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review 2011-10-16 00:19
Thing Hoped for
things hoped for - Andrew Clements,Rafał Olbiński While I found it interesting to see Bobby/Robert from the eyes of a different character, those eyes were incredibly boring ones. Gwen was a flat character in a flat book serving as filler. The sole purpose of this book seems to have been the introduction of William. If the series continues, it'd be good to see Gwen again and have some growth for her character, but as the series stands so far, she seems pointless. This whole book seems pointless. Bobby and Alicia's story could have moved along with the first and third books alone. The very existence of this book makes no sense. I don't have much else to say--boring book, boring characters, the reappearances of Bobby and Alicia were the only reasons I kept reading. Rating: 1/5
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