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review 2016-10-24 00:00
The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D.
The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D. - Nichole Bernier I plan on reading this book again sometime soon and have added it to my favorites list. This is an awesome read. It makes you think about how people see you and what you really know about the people in your life. As close as you are to someone, do you really know them? How they feel about you, about their life? What their secrets are? If you were to die tomorrow, how painful would it be for your special someone to read your journals? What harm could your secrets do?

More to be said in a full review on my blog soon!
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review 2016-07-04 00:00
The Unfinished World: And Other Stories
The Unfinished World: And Other Stories - Amber Sparks This collection of short stories is an inventive, wild ride: there are (among many, many others) time travelers, man-swallowing jungles, an appearance of Lancelot, and a man without a soul in a story punctuated by Irish faerie-tale tropes. While these are not the most emotionally rich stories in the world, Sparks imaginative gifts largely make up for any lack of tearjerkers. She is comfortable in many times (past, present, future); many geographies; many lengths (a few of these are scarcely a page long); many bodies (men, women, gay, straight). My favorite was her longer form, multi-paragraph telling of the man without a soul, but the death house architect was a troubling conceit - a sort of way station to house the rotting bodies of persons whose loved ones believed there was some chance they might still have a spark of life in them, the caretakers of which must be both proficient in first aid as well as wholly lacking in imagination, which would make them mad. There was also the time traveler intent on destroying the masterwork of a great artist. Despite repeated trips to the artist's age, she was only able to effect subtle changes on the great work. While I craved more of the longer pieces, there is no question Sparks' rich world promises much future fruit.
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review 2016-05-31 07:54
The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Sisterhood, #1) by Ann Brashares
The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, #1) - Ann Brashares

31/5 - Why do they always have to change the book in order for it to become a movie?! Alexis Bledel is nothing like the way I would have imagined Lena (described as having the tanned skin of her Greek ancestry, while Bledel is quite white) if I had read the book first and her character's experience in the movie barely resembles that of her book's counterpart. Lena's relationship with Kostas progresses nothing like the way it is portrayed in the movie (although I have to admit that I found movie Lena more sympathetic than the original). The movie even changes how the pants are first acquired. As usual, I'm mostly baffled by the choices screen writers/directors/whoever's in charge of making these changes make.

Anyway, I haven't seen/didn't love the movie enough to constantly be saying "that didn't happen in the movie" to myself as I was reading, which was good, it left me to simply enjoy the book, which I did. I liked the way the story was told with letters to each other interspersed throughout the normal writing style, although the letters could have been a bit longer so we got a little more detail in each. I will definitely be reading the next book in the series.

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review 2016-05-22 14:12
City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1) by Cassandra Clare
City of Bones - Cassandra Clare

SPOILERS!!!

2012 - Great plot. Very suspenseful, which had me speed reading most of it to see what happened next. I kept expecting/hoping to find a connection between the characters from the prequel and the characters from this one. I was angered by the revalation of (view spoiler)[Clary and Jace being siblings (hide spoiler)] and am hoping to find some kind of loophole in one of the sequels. Looking forward to City of Ashes.

18/5 - Rereading this in order to write a more in depth review. To be continued...

19/5 - If you hated the movie, then you'll probably be pleasantly surprised with the book. The movie was a train wreck of bad casting and a case of trying to fit too big a book into too little screen time. Despite having read the book, most of the time I couldn't understand what was going on in the movie. This was one of the worst movies I've ever seen, coming a close second after Vampire Academy. Most people seem to either love or hate this, there's not much in-between. When I read this four years ago I loved it, I'll have to get back to you on my opinion with my older and more well-read brain. To be continued...

22/5 - Okay. I've done my reread and my opinions are a little different from what they were four years ago, but not drastically. I'm bringing the rating down one star because the writing isn't that great, but personally I would choose a great plot over great writing every time (see my reviews for books with 'great writing' for examples) and I really enjoyed the plot. I have heard/read some of the discussion regarding plagiarism but I don't really know what did, or didn't happen, so I haven't taken any of that into account in this review or the rating I've given the book this time around. I did notice one thing that I missed the first time, how similar it is to the Harry Potter series. Valentine closely resembles Voldemort (even in the first letters of their names), Luke's description of the Circle immediately made me think of the Death Eaters, but while I can see those similarities I'm also of the opinion that there is very little that can be called original in fiction these days. Everyone is influenced by everything and Clare being influenced by Rowling is only a bad thing if you didn't like Harry Potter, which is the complete opposite of how I felt about that series. Like a lot of other reviewers I liked the secondary characters more than Clary, Jace, Isabelle, and Alec (on his own). I really liked Simon and in my head he looked like Joe Dinicol from Blindspot (who is much better looking and would have been a better choice than the guy they cast for the movie)

 

 

and I look forward to seeing more of Magnus Bane in the next installment. I will definitely continue rereading this series, at least until I get up to where I stopped reading the first time, then I will simply be 'reading' for the first time around.

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review 2016-03-25 11:36
All That Remains (Kay Scarpetta, #3) by Patricia Cornwell
All That Remains - Patricia Cornwell

23/3 - I just finished watching the last episode in season 10 of Bones on Foxtel and considering the fact that Channel 7 is only halfway through season 11 I don't think Foxtel will be getting its hands on it for some time, possibly not until next year even. Coming to the realisation that I might have to wait 12 months before I see a new episode of Bones sent me into almost immediate withdrawal, but then I looked at my to read list for March and had the epiphany of what's the next best thing after Bones? Scarpetta!! that's what! What early Scarpetta lacks in up to date forensic details it makes up for in realism. I've read the first five books a number of times, but this is the first one where I don't actually remember whodunit or why, which will make for a nice surprise when it's revealed. To be continued...

 

25/3 - The cover is chilling, but it annoys me that it doesn't accurately represent the crimes from the book - yes, there are dead women (and men) found in the woods, but not one of them is described as wearing a skirt and they're all described as being fully clothed and partially skeletonised. So even if one of the women had been wearing a skirt, by the time she was found her bare leg would be nothing but bone and what was left of her flesh, the rest of which had been eaten away by animals, insects and bacteria. I know I'm over thinking things, but details like that bother me.

I had forgotten how early on in the series Scarpetta gets caught up in the politics of murder and I was surprised by the climax of the investigation. The killer was revealed way before the actual climax, but I didn't guess/remember how it was all going to end until I read it. The whole way through the book I found myself looking for clues or hints of some of the big events that I know are coming in later books, but unlike in tv shows (I still have Bones on my mind and that's the first thing that popped into my head when it comes to the little hints and sideways glances that gave the viewers hope about Booth and Bones getting together) I couldn't see anything that would lead me to guess what's going to happen (no spoilers) over the next few books. Still a five star read (YAY! I was worried I was going to find myself disillusioned after so many years between reads). I loved this so much I went straight into Cruel and Unusual.

 

2016 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge: A Murder Mystery

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