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review 2017-09-01 12:27
A Classic Meant To Be Read By Everyone.
Flowers for Algernon - Daniel Keyes

There are books that are recommended its a must read before we die. Flowers for Algernon is one of those books everyone should read. When I pick this up, I never thought it would change the way I view how people are in their own state through a perspective of intelligence. This truly change my way of seeing things now.

 

Written in a journal format, we read progress reports of one Charlie Gordon. He's exceptionally low intelligent person, who works as a cleaner in a bakery shop. As the story unfolds, we learn much about the people he meet along the way - Dr. Strauss and Prof. Nemur, whom is in charge of the experimental surgery; Alice Kinnian, a teacher for special kids who is the love of his life and Algernon, the mouse that is so smart became his one and only friend to Charlie. As months went by, we see changes in his behavior and personality and soon, Algernon starts to deteriorate. So does Charlie.

 

Its a journey reading this classic, one I never thought can be so uplifting but sad as well. I know what it means to be intelligent and on a certain level as well but for what is on the upside, there is always a downside to it. This book shows it really well in reality. It does makes a point of how people are today. The plot is well crafted and easy to follow. The writing is well thought of and we can read the changes of the report as if its truly real written by Charlie himself. And then, there are parts that pointed how people are (selfish, egoistic, pessimism) and Charlie isn't. It was so well-developed, even the characters are to be remembered. While for me, it is sad as I read it and towards the end, it ends with a heartfelt feeling of kismet and we can never outrun fate. For me, its the meaning that is well-research for this book. Its also a book of realization.

 

I know this review might be slightly off, but I just can't seem to find the right words for it. But I do want to say that everyone should read this book.

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review 2017-08-24 19:18
How A Thief Became An Unlikely King And Prove He is The King of Kings
The King of Attolia (Queen's Thief) - Megan Whalen Turner

As sequels goes, its not easy to do a good follow up. The King of Attolia did not out done the previous book but it manages to stay at its form, which to me, has done pretty much expected after The Queen of Attolia. Once again, I fell in love more of the world of The Queen's Thief series and once again, I just can't get enough of Eugenides.

 

Eugenides is now King of Attolia and he has become the least favorite among the guards and his attendants. The unlikely king has been played on pranks, insults and even lost respect by those who can't trust the thief of Eddis. This is why he has choose Costis, an unlikely naive young guard to be his private attendant, who would want Eugenides dead then be the king of Attolia. But because Costis is loyal to the Queen, following orders is what he does best... until Gen has proven himself he is not just the Thief of Eddis, he can be the King of Attolia even though he does not behave like one.

 

There is so much to love about the second sequel - the intrigued plot, the twist and the pacing is just right. Although The Queen of Attolia had its unexpected moments and vivid immersive worlds, The King of Attolia focus more on a young guard point of view on Eugenides and how the Thief won their loyalty, in an unexpected way. Yes, there are conspirators among guards whom hated Gen and wanted him dethrone, but in the end, as the writing goes, is as beautiful as ever that you never expect truly is a worthy read.

 

As always, I am looking forward to the fourth book. There is so much to love and enjoy, and still some surprises that never cease to amaze me. The Queen's Thief series is some thing that works and never fails and its a series worth keeping on my shelve for a long time.

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review 2017-08-08 16:20
The Sequel That Is So Clever and Deceptively Delicious.
The Queen of Attolia (Queen's Thief) - Megan Whalen Turner

Sequels are not an easy read, especially if the author able to write better than the first book. When I read The Thief, I read without any expectations but based upon reviews after reviews from other readers. It is a book that is well-written, filled with a historical universe created rich with myths and adventure. Characters to love and to hate. I felt a lot of great wealth and although, it does felt like a quest story, there is a surprise twist towards the end.

 

The Queen of Attolia is not just more, its some thing so unimaginable that is way beyond my expectations. I finally understood why many readers felt this is a younger adult version of Game of Thrones. The politics, the lies and a war between nations cleverly woven into one epic sequel I have never thought I would be satisfied with contentment.

 

As it is, we follow where Eugenides was left off. He said he could steal anything - steal a man, steal a queen and even a nation to have peace - and he without a doubt, truthful to his words. As a worshiped thief of Eddis and known to his enemies of what he can truly do, war broke out among nations. Politics became dirty, the queen of Attolia trying to do what's best for her nation and the rest is filled with more twist than you can count and you never realize you wanted to read the next chapter it became natural for you to turn the next page. Still, can Eugenides able to do what he said he can do? I was more than surprise that blew my mind that I can't wait to read the next book.

 

There is so much more in The Queen of Attolia - there's more twist, more surprises and more intrigued than before. I love Eugenides and I never thought I would. A written character that surprises me in many ways that shows a whole lot of character is a rarity for me. I never love a fictional character this much but this is one of those that won my heart so much. There is more of EddisMedes and Attolia now and there is so much difference between the first book and this one. Now what deserves a five star rating is truly the story. Every thing in this book is phenomenal. I laugh, shocked, and more than before and even stunned by its delivery. And not just that, the style of writing just begs to be more than it was before. I just can't stop enjoying how wonderful this book is and I am so glad that I started reading this series. Megan Whalen Turner is now my third favorite author and I will read (or wait) any books she will write and will even queued for any of her upcoming books.

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review 2017-07-17 13:53
A Disturbingly Charming Read
Eileen: A Novel - Ottessa Moshfegh

Reading Eileen is a challenge of acceptance. One that is far from being the norm, especially when it comes to understanding human nature at its worst flaw. I read Eileen because of an upcoming book discussion and one of the things that caught my attention was the analytical approach of its description of why 'people are the way they are' in the things they do we are ashamed to talk about. I try to find the main plot line on this book but its actually about a girl (title character) on her last days on a fictional place of what had happened to her and the people she meets along the way before she leaves town. There isn't much of a plot but there is some thing about the writing that is honest and truthful that I tend to agree that what was not dared said is bare here.

 

Eileen is written in a first person of a past memory that she wants to share with the readers. Why she wanted to leave the place she was born, her relationship with her father, her infatuation with a prison guard, her lifeless job in a children's correctional prison and her habitual past-time habits she isn't ashamed of (like stealing a scarf from a store). Then came a new counselor named Rebecca, a young and beautiful girl who give her more attention than others. What happens next lead to a crime that just give a good reason to leave her home town and never look back. Sounds simple and yet uninteresting right?

 

To be fair, I do find the writing and description so well-written that the one thing that did not escape me is how ugly she made out in words makes it so beautiful and honest. There are things we might be ashamed of writing but Ottessa Moshfegh truly embodies the truth of what we don't talk about with other people. You'll get my meaning when you read it. The other thing was not entirely interesting were the dialogue. It felt flat and fake, which is a contradiction in her writing. On one hand, the description of Eileen's feelings and place and the actions she do was very good but on the other hand, the dialogue is surreal. Its like how bizarre the exchange was between father and daughter is unusual. I just can't picture it too well and that really pull part of the book down. By 2/3's of the book, that's where it becomes interesting. Although it was predictable, its just how well Ottessa capture's Eileen's character at its fullest.

 

While this is actually her first book, its a fast read and an interesting one. I can't help but read it to find out where it is leading and part of me felt this is like American Psycho plotline indie kind of story. As realism gets, its the purpose of Eileen on why she need to leave town that makes it understandable on her reasons of doing that. This is some thing I would recommend people to read because to me, its refreshing. Unlike some authors I read when it comes to writing disgusting scenes, Ottesa makes it sound beautiful in her own way of acceptance, like 'yeah, we do that and that's okay'. For me, it deserves a 4 out of 5 star rating and its a book I would recommend for any readers that accepts true reality of life.

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review 2017-06-04 03:25
A Girl, A Man and A Love That Can't Be Touch...
Close Enough to Touch: A Novel - Colleen Oakley

A girl who has a rare allergy - people. A man who is trying to be a father. When two lost souls met in a library, you will expect some thing magical to happen. Here's what I like about this book and there is nothing magical that will happen - its real romance that puts two people in a situation that you just loved them because they are flawed but you can't help it because people like them do exist (apart from the allergy of human touch) and you just can't help it even more to believe it but its true in every single page that is written inside.


Close Enough To Touch is a romantic novel that is poignant and yet beautiful romance novel that is truly touching. When we fall in love, we want to touch and kiss the ones we love. Jubilee can't have any of that. Once, she was kissed by a boy in middle-grade school and it almost killed her. Life as we know it, she grew up without a hug or even holding her mother's hand. Because of that incident, she isolate herself from the world... until her mother passed away. When she met her old schoolmate along the way, she was offered a job to work in a community library. That's where she met Eric, a divorced father with an adopted son from his best friend and a daughter that doesn't want to speak to him at all as to how clueless he is on parenting, on Halloween. When they meet, Eric knew there is some thing about her he can't take his eyes off her. When Jubilee meets Eric, it took one quote from her favorite poet and every thing falls into place.


This is life - its complicated, its flawed and its not what we always want. Written with real world problems, what I love about it is how real this feels. The dialogue is natural and its well exchanged. The characters are memorable and more importantly its the execution. There isn't what I would call it a magical happy ending that ends like a fairy tale. This is real as it gets - the kind that reality sets in one people with indecisive actions, where characters just do not open up and allow their egos set in place until its too late. Where clueless dad's who has a chance to fix things, able to. I love this kind of hope and the ending is just enough to tell me, I don't need a fairy tale ending but I do need an ending that works and this works.


As the book is told in two different perspective of the main characters, its how the exchange of thoughts make its work. Men and women can never understand each other's thinking and to be able to read what they truly think evokes a lot of feelings how relationships can be so difficult to be embraced as one but many people in reality is one-sided in a relationship but this... this is workable. I love how Colleen Oakley has written them and the premise, its just a good way of telling a reader that writing is just a form not to getaway into our own introvert world but in a way, we can be part of a society to understand them why we function the way we are that is written in books. For that, this is truly a better book than her first (although I still love her first book).


If you haven't read any of her books, please pick up Close Enough To Touch first and then read Before I Go. Its light reading (for me anyway) and its a light reading that is worth picking up.

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