Wow, society really sucks!
This is especially true if you don’t follow the herd, if you don’t live like everyone else, and if you decide to do this, you open yourself up to ridicule and pity regardless of how you see your life. This is the main tenet in Sayaka Murata’s novel Convenience Store Woman. In the span of only 180ish pages Murata had me feeling some kind of way about how we as a society deem the norm. It was eye opening, even for someone such as myself. I’d like to think I don’t run in the pack of norms, but I have to admit I’m not as out there when compared to modern Western society. However, the Eastern culture is vastly different and in the end more strict about what they consider normal (or being a functioning member of society) this is what made this story so compelling.
***Huge thank you goes out to Net Galley for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review***
Happy first book review of 2019! How is it that I already feel behind in accomplishing my book reading goals for this year? But at the very least I get to kick off this reading season with not only a fantasy novel, but one I actually enjoyed!
No, The Shadow Kingdom by C.J. Inskon isn’t perfect, but what it gets right is pretty spectacular. The synopsis and idea behind the story is what draws many in. Heck it’s what drew me in and though the details are murky and jumbled especially when it comes to the magic system, had these things been addressed I think the book would have been even greater. From here I think the only thing the author can do is push forward with the series and hopefully fill in those details and small plot holes in order for the series to end on a high note.
Part of my 2019 resolutions will be to read in totality the complete Discworld series. I decided to get a jump on things and read the first novel and I think this is going to be a fantastic experience all around. A few years ago I had read another Discworld Novel, but having zero context as to the world and characters within I felt that I wasn’t able to give it the adequate adoration it deserved. Now, having read The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett I think I can push forward and enjoy each subsequent novel in the series.
To put it simply, it was an adventurous delight.
WARNING: Book contains graphic imagery of violent true crimes committed, including sexual assault, rape, and murder.
Having just moved to one of the cities mentioned in this novel I’ll admit to a brief twinge of fear as I listened to this audio book. I’ll Be Gone in the Dark pulls no punches as to the details of the crimes committed by the East Area Rapist/Original Night Stalker now Golden State Killer in the late 1970s into the 1980s. I was aware of this serial killer prior to this books creation and therefore was intrigued by its release. However, my hopes diminished quickly at knowledge of the sudden and unexpected death of the book’s author, Michelle McNamara. Having your work, especially a project you’ve been working on for upwards of a decade, be handed off to another voice after you can no longer complete your vision can leave any hopeful reader feeling antsy. This was me as I purchased the audio book from audible.
In reading this book I feel I have broken a cardinal law that I established for myself when I took up the mantle Book Worm. I have to say that it’s not a pleasant feeling, but I think I’ll get past it once I start reading my next book. I read out of order!!! Dun-dun-dun!!!
The Living by Isaac Marion is the third book in the Warm Bodies series, the fourth book written in the Warm Bodies Universe. Again, this was a case of my not being aware that a movie was actually based off of a book prior to my viewing it. I really should just assume all movies come from books at this point until proven otherwise. It would help prevent awkward moments such as this in the future.
This book was not for me. What I mean is, I wasn’t its intended audience.
It was right there in the title, The Actor’s Life: A Survival Guide and that is exactly who Jenna Fischer geared her book towards. Don’t get me wrong I enjoyed the book, though I feel that had I been an aspiring actor I would have found it more beneficial and would have probably related to it more. The upside is that I adore Jenna Fischer and I enjoyed listening to her audio book about her experiences as an aspiring actor. I just won’t be using any of her advice for myself, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be useful for someone else. Someone who you know…actually wants to be an actor.
**Thank you to Net Galley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review**
WARNING: Book contains underage drinking, drug use, sexual content, and suicidal imagery.
A good chunk of time has passed since I have had the privilege to read a Young Adult novel (though if one is so inclined an argument could be made that this falls into the New Adult genre) that could very well be considered in the drama sub-category. My usual go-to is fantasy or sci-fi, but in order to understand and implement true angst into my own YA WIP, I wanted a little refresher. The synopsis was interesting and I was pretty much hooked right away.
It’s hard to describe the feelings I had as I read To Laugh Well by JC Alaimo. What I thought would play out as a sensitive and informative read on mental illness was really just a book about a boy’s first year in college away from home. Granted there are trials and tribulations that ultimately come to a not so pleasant ending, but on the whole I felt that maybe this book was 60% college experience 30% depression and other mental health concerns.
**A deep thank you is sent directly to the author for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review**
I love that I live in a time where more and more female authors are getting their voices heard and more and more female heroines are being created by these female authors. I look forward to books that have a strong female lead and perhaps that’s why many of them have not…panned out, the way I hoped they would.
I was excited to receive a copy of Supernatural Slayer by Devyn Jayse. The story seemed like exactly the type that would transport me into a new world. I was fully ready for this, but it just never got to that golden moment. While the story is there and the writing decent, the MC left something to be desired. She just wasn’t relatable and I found the character falling back on the very overdone trope of, “I want to make my girl tough, I know I will have her break all the men that come into contact with her.”
Trust me when I say, there are other ways to make your heroine a bad ass without having to incorporate a weird ball busting habit. It is unfortunate that this author decided to go the way of the trope.
**A thank you to Net Galley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review**
WARNING: Sexual imagery that can potentially leave you, the reader, baffled.
In a long ago era a book such as The Alehouse at the End of the World by Stevan Allred would be one to marvel at. We would pick through its interesting nuisances and hidden comedic breath, hoping to come out the other end with something we could take away from the experience. This, however, is the year 2018 and all I can say is, why oh why was this book written now?
Allow me a brief moment of generalization as I say that this book at its heart is misogynistic, sexist, and unnecessarily crude to the point of ridiculousness. Underneath the fable lies the need to tell meaningless cock, fart, and poop jokes like a caveman who just discovered civilization. I did not take anything intellectual away from this, instead feeling as one does after watching all the movies in the American Pie catalog; dirty and brain dead.
There isn’t much to the formula of a decently read biography or autobiography. For me, the main thing is to not take yourself or the person so seriously and please please please do not gloss over the dramatic or possibly not so great things they have done, if you do you won’t have a very interesting story left. We all know no one is perfect and to try to write a story about a person like they are can drag very quickly regardless of who the person was. I grew up with all things Jim Henson and up until I picked up The Biography by Brian Jay Jones there was a lot I didn’t realize about his career and his personal life.
I should have enjoyed this book more than I did and all I can say is, the author should have simply let Jim Henson be human.