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review 2018-10-17 22:30
Are we, as in humans, headed in this direction???
The Last Town - Blake Crouch

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~SERIES BLURB~

Wayward Pines Series

Blake Crouch

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The plot surrounds Secret Service agent Ethan Burke's introduction to the remote small town of Wayward Pines, his new home from which he cannot escape. The mysteries and horrors of the town build until Ethan discovers its secret. Then he must do his part to keep Wayward Pines protected from without and within.

 

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~MY QUICKIE (and non-spoiler) REVIEW~

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A very mysterious, uniquely done creepy-scary scenario with scy-fy and dystopian-ish elements, this trilogy is a must-read. I loved it, despite certain aspects confusing the heck out of me…I'm inclined to believe that's on me, more than the writing, though.  And geez-louise, what an ending...

 

If you don't know much about this series…you should keep it that way…and dive in.  Seriously, just do it.  The narration is excellently done for one-person narration. 

 

๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏

~MY RATING~

4.7STARS - GRADE=A

๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏

 

 

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~BREAKDOWN OF RATINGS~

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Plot~ 4.7/5

Main Characters~4.7/5

Secondary Characters~ 4.5/5

The Feels~ 4.5/5

Pacing~ 4.5/5

Addictiveness~ 5/5

Theme or Tone~ 5/5

Flow (Writing Style)~ 4.5/5

Backdrop (World Building)~ 5/5

Originality~ 5/5

Ending~ 4.5/5  Cliffhanger~ Well…

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Book Cover~ Meh…

Narration~4.5 for Paul Garcia

Series~ Wayward Pines #3

Setting~ Wayward Pines

Source~ I Own Audible Audiobook

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I used this for Modern Noir Square in Halloween Bingo 2018

 

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text 2018-10-11 07:10
IROG Sponsors the Most Joyful Game in Town: Gift-Giving

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For 4 consecutive years, every 16th of September, IROG is consistently donating baby needs to the newly born at San Marcelino Hospital in Zambales in memory of the chairperson’s late husband, Joel Castillo.

 

What does the cool gentle breeze of the Brrr-months bring to mind? Well, aside from the need to bring out one’s thick blankets and sporty jackets, what else but thoughts of endless partying among relatives and friends (yes, we are referring to that Filipino penchant for year-long and, more so, year-end festivities) until and beyond the onset of the New Year. More specifically, we refer to the happiest blessing of receiving and giving gifts.
 
Be it as small as a keychain, or a Bluetooth speaker, or as generous as a karaoke machine (a car will do, too), the joy that gifts bring is both a product of an act of faith and love as well as a childhood-bred instinct that is almost as essential as breathing itself. And so, we need to give and to receive as often as we inhale and exhale in order to remain truly healthy.
 
No other group understands this principle as intimately as IROG does. IROG (Isabelita Rosueta Organization) once more looks forward to its Annual Gift-giving Activity this year, its members get busy setting the ground for another opportunity to bring joy and cheer to the families who need caring and attention.
 
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In the past, IROG extended help to the mothers and their newborn babies in San Marcelino Hospital. Every 16th of September, infants received a bag of essential baby needs, such as diapers, feeding bottles and some baby dresses, along with baby mattress pads and pillows. The happiness felt by the nursing mothers was shared equally by IROG gift-givers as they saw the smiles and felt the warm gratitude of the recipients. When we selflessly and cheerfully give to a baby who is the best gift from Heaven to the world, for we were all once babies and new life-bearers, we actually give to ourselves. For only then can the Giver of Life find us worthy to have received precious life. For when giving ends, life ends as well.
 
Aside from giving gifts to mothers and their babies, IROG has also sponsored school gift-giving events at Sto. Tomas Elementary School, Subic, Zambales from the very start of its operations as a socially-oriented foundation. Giving is, in a way, the game and the winners are both the giver and the recipient. Hence, nobody loses in this game!
 
Spearheading this awaited annual event is the kindhearted and dynamic IROG chairperson, who along with her late husband, Joel, believes in the maxim that “no matter what life brings you, keep on moving forward and stay positive”. IROG throbs and thrives because its corporate soul has both seen and experienced life at its best and worst phases and, in the process, nurtured a living common spirit that seeks to face life with resolve and dedication to make every moment count as a blessing to be shared and cherished by all. And that means one’s family, friends, neighbors and others in the community. A family can only find meaning and security if it is truly connected to the community it finds itself in.
 
IROG continues to believe in many more good things to come for many people. Its small part in making people feel the good things in life will also usher in peace and multiply contentment in the blessings we all constantly receive from day-to-day.
 
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review 2018-09-28 14:15
The Song of Carrie White
Carrie - Stephen King

 

King does a great job with setting up the main characters in this story: Carrieta "Carrie" White, Sue Snell, Carrie's mother, the teacher, principal, Chris, Billy, and Tommy. You can believe how a girl like Carrie could have been pushed as hard as she was in this book and decides to take matters into her own hands and make the people that she sees as the source of her pain (the kids at school, her mother, the town of Chamberlain) pay. There is no happy ending to Carrie. We have a teen girl who was bullied by her mother and her peers who in the end just wants people to feel even a sliver of the pain she has felt her own life. 

 

"Carrie" begins with Carrie White getting her period for the first time in the girl's shower room at her high school. What follows is an ugly look at teen girls at their worst. Led by one of the nastiest characters ever, Chris Hargensen taunts Carrie and leads the rest of the group of girls into throwing sanitary napkins and tampons at her. Carrie thinks she is dying and reaches out to her gym teacher,  Miss Desjardin who also feels repulsed by Carrie and then pities her when she realizes that Carrie really has no idea about what periods are and that this is her first one. 

 

From there King follows Carrie and several other characters, Sue Snell, Chris Hargensen, Miss Desjardin, and a few others that I am totally forgetting to the epic events that led to the destruction of Chamberlain, Maine. 

 

I ended up pitying Carrie. You find out that her mother is a religious dictator and that she has done her best to make Carrie ashamed of being a woman as well as punishing her if she does one thing that she doesn't like. King includes comments from Carrie's grandmother that shows that Carrie's mother has always been uber religious and off. I honestly wonder though how she got that way since it didn't seem like Carrie's mother was raised in a religious household.


Carrie's father died when she was young and we hear bits and pieces about him (always very religious but seemed to be into drinking) and he casts a long shadow on the book. 

 

King also includes back and forths with other characters who try to examine their behavior towards Carrie (Sue and Miss Desjardin) and we follow the road to what led to Carrie going to prom night with Sue's boyfriend Tommy. 

 

King also did a good job of showing how people like Chris (bullies) can cause high school to just be a painful experience for a good many children. One of my favorite scenes was the school principal smacking down Chris's father who came and tried to have Miss Desjardin fired and her prom tickets given back to her. One wonders if someone had stood up to her father beforehand, maybe Chris's reign of terror would have been cut off. I think looking at Chris to Carrie you can see how parents can shape you for the best or worst. 

 

King includes personal testimonies from several of the townspeople to the police and to a committee, excerpts from a book written by Sue Snell, and even includes an autopsy report in the book. All of these working parts to the book do make it greater than if we just followed Carrie to the end of the book. This book seems to be King's practice case for "The Outsider" since he used similar narrative pieces in that book as well (he had witness testimonies, newspaper articles, etc.) This doesn't impact the flow at all and makes the book much more interesting. 

 

The setting of the book is a small town in Maine, Chamberlain. After the events of prom night, the town in essence dies. You can read the pain that many survivors have not just for those lost, but for those who didn't stop Carrie's mother and try to reach out to her so she didn't feel so alone.


The ending was sad to me. I can understand Carrie's rage. A world that overlooked her, mocked her, and seemed hell bent on destroying her. I can see why she wanted to watch everything burn. 

 

 

 

 

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review 2018-09-27 19:35
HEX by Thomas Olde Heuvelt
HEX - Thomas Olde Heuvelt

 

HEX was not what I expected. At all. It had some very creepy moments and for that reason I'm glad I read it, but I didn't find it to be the end all-be all of dark fiction like most of my friends did. I'm a little bummed about that because my expectations were high.

 

I'm not going to get into the plot much as this book came out several years ago and everyone knows it's about a witch. She haunts the town, but her type of haunting mainly consists of showing up at weird times and places, creeping the hell out of everyone by just standing there, and then she vanishes. Okay, there's more to it than that, but that's the gist.

 

As I mentioned above, there were a few genuinely disturbing moments and I could almost feel the stifling atmosphere at times. The few scenes that unsettled me were effective and creative. However, my enjoyment of them was often marred by breasts. That's right: breasts. What is the fascination with them in this story? Also, the poor lady with the high forehead. OMG, get over it already! Every single time this character was mentioned, so was her forehead. Lastly, I think the (I'll just call them) portents of doom, were overused and unnecessary. Owls all over the place looking at you, and peacocks...peacocking themselves about. Enough! Get on with it!

 

I cared for almost none of the people in Black Spring, nor did they deserve my care. For the most part they were all terrible human beings. It's partly because of that that I LOVED the ending! From what I've read and my discussion with my online friend Lillelara, who buddy read this with me, the denouement was completely re-written from the original Dutch version. I think it worked wonderfully for an American audience, (or at least me),especially in today's world. (Lillelara was less impressed than I.)

 

In short, I really liked the first half and I found the creepy times to be genuinely eerie and disturbing. The second half seemed to ramble... foreheads, breasts, peacocks, etc. The ending rocked. I don't know what else to say, other than I'd love to hear your thoughts about it.

 

I read this for my 2018 TBR challenge, (to read books I've owned for years and still not read), and I also read it for the TERROR IN A SMALL TOWN square in Halloween Bingo at Booklikes.

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text 2018-09-27 19:35
Reading progress update: I've read 47%.
Carrie - Stephen King

And now we are at Prom Night.

 

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