Sunday, 29 March 2015

Tinged With Disappointment - My Review of Ready Player One

Ok I've been putting off writing my review of this book for a good few days now as I feel like I'm letting people down with what I think of it. The book I'm talking about is Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. I chose this book for the PopSugar challenge topic of a book set in the future and my husband knew it was on the list and that I was excited about reading it so he went and ordered me a copy.

As soon as it arrived, I put down my other books and I started reading. It started off ok, but no better than anything else I've read. It then went onto infodump for about a quarter of the book before anything really happened. I kept waiting and waiting, but it was just very flat. Then when something finally did happen, a love interest was introduced. As much as I liked Art3mis, I don't feel that her character added anything to the story. I would have preferred to see how Parzival and Aech dealt with the whole situation being best friends and seeing if they could stay that way or if the game would tear them apart (rather than what happened and a relationship got in the way).

Everyone has also said that it's cool that there are all these 80's references and as a big fan of the 80's I was looking forward to spotting things I knew about. I didn't need to "spot" them though as they were clearly dropped almost like someone bragging that they knew a famous person. It felt very much like the author was trying to show how cool he was and was trying too hard by mentioning all these retro games and films etc.

I could see the ending coming a mile away and if I remember rightly, the ending seems to be a slight variation on the ending to the film Hackers. It has been a while since I've watched it, but still...

Overall I feel really let down by the book, though I am glad I read it so that I could form my own opinion. It took me far longer than a book this length should as I had to force myself to keep picking it back up, when I was expecting a page turner.

I started this book on the 20th of March 2015 and finished it on the 26th of March 2015
I gave this book 3 stars on Goodreads, though I would have preferred to have given it 2.5

Sunday, 15 March 2015

My Review of In The Dark by Richard Laymon

I really need to get back to reading books on my reading challenge lists and stop getting distracted by ALL THE BOOKS. So on both the PopSugar reading challenge and the BookRiot read harder challenge, there is a topic for "a book recommended by a friend" and the book I was recommended to by the hubby (he counts as a friend right?) was In The Dark by Richard Laymon.

Since meeting my hubby I've read quite a few Richard Laymon books as he is one of his favourite authors, this isn't one of them though and he really wanted me to read it to see what I thought as he hasn't read it yet either. 

As with all Richard Laymon books, even though this was over 500 pages long, it was very quick and easy to read and I read it in just a couple of hours over 3 days. 

The story centres around Jane who is the new head librarian in the town and she receives an envelope which contains money and a clue to where she would find more money. Along the way she meets Brace who becomes a love interest and you get the usual "is it him or is it not" twists, hints and misdirections. As she follows each clue, the challenges become more and more difficult and dangerous. As a normal, sensible human being (honestly) there is no way I'd have gone past finding the first envelope and I don't think anyone with any sort of sanity would continue past maybe the fourth one when it becomes more extreme. 

The characters as usual for a Richard Laymon book are pretty pantomime, but I found both the main characters to be likeable which isn't always the case. 

Overall I really enjoyed the story and would recommend it to anyone who is a fan of horror without it being too scary, There was just one bit at the end that I felt was an unnecessary addition to the story, but I won't say what as I do try to keep spoilers out of my reviews. 

One thing I did do when starting to read this book was to get out my pen and paper and start a "nipple" count. If you've read any Richard Laymon at all, you'll probably know he loves the word nipple! This book actually came in with a relatively low score of only 11 mentions.

I started reading this book on the 6th of March 2015 and finished it on the 9th of March 2015
I gave this book 4 stars on Goodreads

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Once Upon A Time - My Review of Jack of Fables: The (Nearly) Great Escape

I've been wanting to pick up a Fables book for a long time and the Panels comic book read harder challenge gave me the perfect excuse under the topic of "read a fantasy comic". The book I picked up at the library was Jack of Fables: The (Nearly) Great Escape by Bill Willingham.

I have played the first chapter of The Wolf Among Us by Telltale Games on the Xbox 360, which I loved and so I did have a little insight as to the Fables and how their world works.

The story was really great and very interesting, I loved all the characters (except Jack, but I think that's the point). It was weird, in a good way to see all the characters that I grew up reading about as grown ups themselves and doing "grown up" things like smoking, drinking, swearing and having sex.

The artwork was brilliant too and worked brilliantly with the writing, I loved searching each page to see which fairy tale characters I could spot in the back ground.

I absolutely loved this book and I am hoping to add it to my own personal collection at some point in the future, as well as all the other volumes.

I started reading this book on the 22nd of February and completed it the same day
I gave this book 5 stars on Goodreads

Friday, 13 March 2015

A Decision Has Been Made

I've been thinking about my book reviews and how I want to go forward with them, making sure I have enough time to do all the things that I want to do as well. I have decided that I will for the time being at least only be doing a full review on books and comics for my reading challenges. All other books I read will still get a mini review on Goodreads with a star rating, but they will not currently get a blog review. What I will do though, is a monthly wrap up blog post listing the books I have read outside of the challenges and what ratings I gave each of them.

Looking to the future, I will also be blogging about snail mail, crafts and any conventions that I attend (I have a few in my diary already) so making this decision gives me more time to dedicate to my other passions and to be able to share them with you.

This has been a big, scary but exciting decision to make and I am looking forward to bringing a more diverse content to my blog.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

I Need Eye Bleach - My Review of Requiem Vampire Knight

For part of my Panels comic book reading challenge, under the category "a comic published in Europe" I picked up Requiem Vampire Knight Vol. 1: Resurrection by Pat Mills from the library (my library has an amazing selection of graphic novels and trade paper backs for such a small town).

I wasn't sure what to expect as I didn't read any synopsis and chose it for the fact it was published in Europe and the cover art was awesome. Looking back I think I could have done with some preparation for what I was about to face.

I have really struggled writing this review as I've been so unsure as to what to say about this book. The story itself is interesting as it describes how depending on your crimes during your life time you get "resurrected" in hell as different terrors and the worst people become Vampire Knights. The main protagonist is a Nazi who was killed by the woman he was attacking and we follow his story and learn about vampires.

The artwork was stunning if not brutally graphic. I still don't feel that I needed to see a grotesquely pierced penis to help with the story and was left worried about looking too hard at the details on the pages, The one picture I thought was awesome though was the flying ship.

All in all a weird read and not something I'll be picking up again.

I started reading this book on the 20th of February 2015 and finished it on the same day
I gave this book 2 stars on Goodreads

Friday, 6 March 2015

In Blackest Day , In Brightest Night - My Review of Green Lantern: The Sinestro Corps War

This library haul pick would only be my second comic book experience with anything Green Lantern (though I love the animated versions of him, never seen the live action film!) The book I'm talking about is Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War Vol. 1 by Geoff Johns. 

From my experience Green Lantern and the rest of the Corps' have a really bad reputation as not being very interesting and the characters aren't great, This has always put me off picking anything up about them, but the more I've watched different animated versions of Hal Jordan and the gang, the more I thought I should give them a fair chance and make my own opinion. So when I saw this book looking back at me at the library I picked it straight up. 

I knew Geoff Johns was awesome before reading this, but I believe it even more so now! This book is action packed with enough story to balance it perfectly. You see lanterns that as far as I'm aware you don't normally see and you learn so much, 

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and I will be picking up the next volume as soon as I can. There is one part where Parallax possessed Kyle Rayner and Sinestro welcomed him to his Corps, I actually out loud went "ooooooooh" it was just such an epic moment and the art work did it justice with a totally badass picture. 

I'd recommend this to anyone even if they've never read or seen anything of the Corps' before,

I started this book on the 20th of February 2015 and finished it on the same day
I originally gave this 4 stars on Good reads, but have changed it to 5 stars