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review 2019-03-25 14:46
The Boy from Tomorrow: Featuring a Ouija Board as the New Telephone
The Boy from Tomorrow - Camille DeAngelis

The Boy from Tomorrow tells about a girl, Josie, and a boy, Alec, who both happen to live or lived at the house on 444 Sparrow Street. They never happened to met because she’s from the past and he’s from the future. Their only means of communication is through a talking board. Both Josie and Alec experience hardships and challenges with their own lives, during different centuries. But setting those aside, their friendship strengthens and they get through life little by little with the company of the other.

 

The book involves themes of friendship and family which captured my interest because of its representation in the book. It tackles family issues like abuse and divorce. The friendship of the two kids can be clearly seen, especially in their willingness to talk to the other (even if it means getting caught) and to offer advice and support the other needs. Even if you’re centuries apart and you still want to help your friend, now, that’s called real friendship.

 

There were some chapters and characters which I think were kind of unnecessary. But I understood that maybe it was for clearer context. At first, I found the pace of the book slow but as the chapters dragged on, the pace became better. I knew from the first line of the book that there was something, something that had piqued my interest which could make me attached to the book somehow.

 

The writing was nice, not because it was for middle graders, but in all seriousness, the writing was really good. That’s one thing I enjoyed about it. The writing was just simple, clear, and easy to comprehend. I felt like a young girl once again when reading this book. I felt like I was reading the kinds of books I read during my childhood. It was good to reminisce and this book made me did that. The books had a sense of lightness but also, a sense of deepness at the same time and I liked that it wasn’t just at surface level.

 

I actually had plenty of chances to  read this once I’ve started but I just seem to be always in a book slump whenever I try to read it. I finally had the courage to continue where I left and ended up actually liking the book.

 

The Boy from Tomorrow is actually quick and heartwarming read that can be for everyone, not just middle-graders. When reading this book, you could feel a whirlwind of emotions for the characters, sympathy, anger, sadness, joy. We could even learn a thing or two from Josie or Alec, to value our past, the present, and future.

 

Just a lil’ trigger warning and semi-spoiler. There is a chapter involving child abuse. When I read about it, my heart just went soft for Josie and her sister. They don’t deserve to be treated the way they did. No child does.

 

Note: Thanks a lot to NetGalley for providing me a copy of this book that I enjoyed reading. :>

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review 2019-03-08 21:37
Myra Breckinridge by Gore Vidal
Myra Breckinridge - Gore Vidal,Camille Paglia

Though 'Myra Breckinridge' offends on every level, though it is trashy, absurd, vile - also criminally prurient - I love this book. This novel, like Myra herself, cannot be easily categorized or made comfortable to readers.

 

The novel is made up of the pages of Myra's journal, kept at the request of her psychologist. The plot is simple: Myra Breckinridge comes to Hollywood to get her deceased husband Myron's share of his uncle Buck's "star" academy. From there she aims, simply, to conquer.

 

As Uncle Buck tries to discredit her claims, Myra begins undermining the academy from the inside as a teacher, and a whole lot of sexual shenanigans goes on. I'm a product of our jaded, modern society and this 1968 novel is jaw-dropping to me in 2019. There is unfortunately nothing old-fashioned about the sexist attitudes Myra confronts and subverts, often cruelly, and the over-the-top racism and sexism she brings to the table - while thick with satire - is deeply uncomfortable.

 

One thing is usually known about 'Myra Breckinridge':

She is in fact a transsexual. Myra was Myron.

(spoiler show)

 

That fact is important and makes a large part of the argument for why the book is so relevant today. However, Myra is no poster-child and if no man can possess her, neither can any group wanting to add her to their canon. This was a book that also took on the darker elements of Hollywood and what it took to be a star, and recent events keep proving that things have not changed too much in fifty years.

 

Altogether, the book is delightful. I don't know why I find it so, given most of the pieces make me want to wash my hands, but I loved reading it. After having been out of print in the United States since the late 90s it is past time we all got reacquainted with the weird in Vidal's fiction.

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review 2018-10-17 09:40
REVIEW BY MERISSA - Emergence (Voodoo Butterfly #2) by Camille Faye
Emergence (Voodoo Butterfly #2) - Camille Faye

Emergence is the second book in the Voodoo Butterfly series, and we start pretty much where we left off. Sophia and Taj are still together, although things aren't quite as smooth as they were. However, trouble isn't far away, and Poppy ends up being injured. This is just the tip of the iceberg, and things quickly go downhill for Sophie. Add to that, Taj disappears mysteriously, quickly followed by Avi.

I'll be honest here, for a while I was worried this was going to become the ubiquitous love triangle, but Camille Faye managed to avoid that in this book. Now, I'm not saying it may not happen in the future, but for now, in this book, we're safe.

There is plenty of action and adventure in this book, possibly more than Voodoo Butterfly, and it is great to see Sophie growing in confidence and power. We also meet more of the Mambos, and find out more about them, which made for incredible reading.

I am absolutely loving this series, as it is exceptionally written, with no editing or grammatical errors that spoil my reading. The story is intricate and intriguing, definitely leaving me wanting more. With a great cast of supporting characters to round things off, there is simply nothing about this series/book that I don't like.

Fair warning though - there is still a mystery to solve regarding Taj, and it does end on a cliffhanger. I know something is going on with him, but I'll always be Team Jacques!

Definitely recommended by me!

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Merissa
Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

Source: archaeolibrarian.wixsite.com/website/single-post/2018/08/20/Emergence-Voodoo-Butterfly-2-by-Camille-Faye
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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-09-23 13:18
The End of Narcissus
The Picture of Dorian Gray - Oscar Wilde,Camille Cauti

I have never read this one before now. I knew the bare bones of the story due to my high school English class having excerpts of the story. I guess I never wanted to read about a murdering guy who was too beautiful to live. Though I found parts of the story compelling, I found myself getting bored here and there. Probably because we would go some chapters and just read about what Dorian was up to. The book was much better when there was dialogue between characters. I also don't even get why Dorian killed Basil besides him just becoming unhinged. And him demanding another former friend help him just seemed stupid. So for most of the book I was waiting for him to get caught. Wilde ends things on an ironic note with how Dorian eventually ends up dying. 

 

"Dorian Gray" has the title character not coming into the story right away. Instead he is a discussion between Basil Hallward (who is a painter) and Lord Henry. Basil has become obsessed with painting someone and goes on about how perfectly beautiful he is. Basil doesn't want Lord Henry to meet Dorian since he foreshadows that somehow Lord Henry will ruin him. So before we even meet Dorian, we have two men battling over his soul. Lord Henry of course wants to meet Dorian since he likes beautiful people as long as they are not boring. 

When Dorian comes across Lord Henry he is flattered as his attention and almost instantly wishes to be more like him. While sitting for the painting Dorian wishes that he can stay young and beautiful before and that somehow the painting off him will age instead. Dorian is brought down by listening to Lord Henry and his long butt dialogues about what really matters in this world is enjoying everything though it may be wrong.

 

We fast forward a bit to Dorian being happy and telling Basil and Lord Henry that he met the woman he is going to marry. The woman is named Sibyl and she's an actress. It seemed at first that maybe Dorian could be good and lose Lord Henry's influence, but unfortunately things get really bad when Dorian takes his friends to see Sibyl and her acting as Juliet in Romeo and Juliet is awful. I mean you want to throw pies at her awful. Due to Dorian hating imperfect things he is quite ready to throw Sibyl away. Dorian doesn't feel bad about the way he has treated her until he comes upon the painting and sees that his mouth has now turned cruel. Wanting to make sure that his soul stays pure, Dorian decides he will stand by and still marry Sibyl, too bad he finds out that she killed herself over his rejection of her. From there the book just follows Dorian as he sets about ruining himself and others over 18 years. 

 

I did find myself getting quite bored at times. And weirdly enough I did agree with Dorian when he rejected Basil when he came to tell him that his reputation was being ruined in London. Dorian called his accusers hypocrites for doing the same things as he was, he was just not hiding it. Also I wonder at these men and women who let themselves be seduced by him. It sees as if only Basil and Lord Henry didn't sit around and do what Dorian wanted.


The book goes into a free fall after Basil is murdered with Dorian getting more scared that he will be found out and then scared that Sibyl's brother who has been hunting him for years will find him and kill him. 

 

In the end, Dorian dies after plunging a knife into the painting that he blames for all of his troubles. He is found by his servants and they are shocked at finding an old man in their master's chambers. Wilde heavily implies that no one will miss Dorian besides his servants. 

 

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text 2018-09-23 02:18
Reading progress update: I've read 212 out of 248 pages.
The Picture of Dorian Gray - Oscar Wilde,Camille Cauti

I’m always baffled at the incorrect page numbers. This is 212 with footnotes.

 

Not going to lie, very interesting, but not a favorite.

 

Some parts were slow and Wilde not coming right out to explain the terrible things Dorian was doing was a strange literary choice. I know readers are supposed to just guess, but it just sounded like he was drinking, smoking opium, and having affairs.  I guess as long as it was hidden that’s fine. He didn’t do anything too evil until he murdered Basil and then forced someone to help him cover it up.

 

I didn’t like Lord Henry at all and wondered why Dorian paid any mind to him. 

 

One wonders of this was a cautionary tale or what at times since Wilde depicts mostly everyone around Dorian to be awful in some form or another.

 

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