Book Haul [#4]

Image
I know… another book haul… I have a problem this month. 

We have The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien. 
Image
The tales of The Silmarillion were the underlying inspiration & source of Tolkien’s imaginative writing. He worked on the book throughout his life but never brought it to final form. Long preceding in its origins The Lord of the Rings, it’s the story of the 1st Age of Tolkien’s world, the ancient drama to which characters in The Lord of the Rings look back & in which some of them, such as Elrond & Galadriel, took part.
The title Silmarillion is shortened from Quenta Silmarillion, The History of the Silmarils, the three great jewels created by Feanor, most gifted of the Elves, in which he imprisoned the light of the Two Trees that illumined Valinor, the land of the gods. When Morgoth, 1st Dark Lord, destroyed the Trees, that light lived on only in the Silmarils; Morgoth seized them & set them in his crown, guarded in the impenetrable fortress of Angband in the north of Middle-earth. The Silmarillion is the history of the rebellion of Feanor & his people against the gods, their exile in Middle-earth, & their war, hopeless despite all the heroisim of Elves & Men, against the great Enemy.
The book includes several other, shorter works beside The Silmarillion proper. Preceding it are Ainulindale, the myth of Creation, & Valaquenta, in which the nature & powers of each of the gods is set forth. After The Silmarillion is Akallabeth, the story of the downfall of the great island kingdom of Numenor at the end of the 2nd Age; completing the volume is “Of the Rings of Power & the 3rd Age,” in which the events of The Lord of the Rings are treated in the manner of The Silmarillion.

I love The Hobbit and Lord of The Rings. So it’s only fitting that I read this right? I love the elves too, so even more of a reason to read it. I’m just ashamed that it has taken me this long to buy it!

Then we have The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss.
Image
The second book in The Kingkiller Chronicle.

In The Wise Man’s Fear, Kvothe searches for answers, attempting to uncover the truth about the mysterious Amyr, the Chandrian, and the death of his parents. Along the way, Kvothe is put on trial by the legendary Adem mercenaries, forced to reclaim the honor of his family, and travels into the Fae realm. There he meets Felurian, the faerie woman no man can resist, and who no man has ever survived…until Kvothe.
Now, Kvothe takes his first steps on the path of the hero and learns how difficult life can be when a man becomes a legend in his own time.

I’m currently reading The Name of The Wind, the first book in the trilogy, and I love it. It’s brilliant so I had to buy the next one. I would definitely recommend these books. If you’re looking to read more Epic Fantasy then I would start with this trilogy. 

The 3rd book is The Last of the Mohicans by J. Fenimore Cooper.
Image
Cooper’s famous adventure brings the wilds of the American frontier and the drama of the French-Indian war to vivid life. Featuring the classic character Natty Bumppo, it is a moving, memorable depiction of courage, passion, and forbearance, and a precursor to the Western genre.

This was bought on a whim. I’ve never read anything like this before, so I thought its about time I tried. It sounds good. 

The last book is Longbourn by Jo Baker.
Image
If Elizabeth Bennet had the washing of her own petticoats, Sarah often thought, she’d most likely be a sight more careful with them.
In this irresistibly imagined belowstairs answer to Pride and Prejudice,the servants take center stage. Sarah, the orphaned housemaid, spends her days scrubbing the laundry, polishing the floors, and emptying the chamber pots for the Bennet household. But there is just as much romance, heartbreak, and intrigue downstairs at Longbourn as there is upstairs. When a mysterious new footman arrives, the orderly realm of the servants’ hall threatens to be completely, perhaps irrevocably, upended. 
Jo Baker dares to take us beyond the drawing rooms of Jane Austen’s classic—into the often overlooked domain of the stern housekeeper and the starry-eyed kitchen maid, into the gritty daily particulars faced by the lower classes in Regency England during the Napoleonic Wars—and, in doing so, creates a vivid, fascinating, fully realized world that is wholly her own. 

This sounds rather awesome. Downton Abbey meets Pride and Prejudice?! Yes please. 

Advertisements

Book Haul [#3]

Image

Welcome to my second book haul of the year! These are a few books I’ve accumulated over the past 10 days that I haven’t already blogged about.  I mentioned a few of these books on my youtube channel that I started up (if any of you saw it). However, I have now deleted said video because I have decided it would be silly of me to start a booktube channel when I’m in my third year of University. Even if I managed to regularly update I wouldn’t have been able to carry it on in September as I will most likely be starting a masters degree and I will have barely any time to read never mind keep a youtube channel running. Maybe I will return to it in the future but right now it would be stupid of me.

Anyway on to the book haul!

The first book I bought was The Taming of The Shrew by William Shakespeare.

I should think people will have heard of this one. My favourite chick flick is 10 Things I Hate About You, therefore when I found out it was based on The Taming of The Shrew… I HAD TO HAVE IT.

“Renowned as Shakespeare’s most boisterous comedy, The Taming of the Shrew is the tale of two young men, the hopeful Lucentio and the worldly Petruchio, and the two sisters they meet in Padua. 
Lucentio falls in love with Bianca, the apparently ideal younger daughter of the wealthy Baptista Minola. But before they can marry, Bianca’s formidable elder sister, Katherine, must be wed. Petruchio, interested only in the huge dowry, arranges to marry Katherine -against her will- and enters into a battle of the sexes that has endured as one of Shakespeare’s most enjoyable works.”

The second book is Selected Poems 1923-1958 by E.E. Cummings.

I’ve only recently started to read poetry. I obviously studied poets like Carol Ann Duffy, Simon Armitage and Shakespeare at school, but I’ve never actually owned anything until I was 19. I always thought “oh i wont like that… i cant understand it… why would i read that… its for old people.”. I suppose its a sign of growing up for me that I have become very fond of poetry. I have a love for Sonnets, especially Shakespeare and Keats so I wanted to try out something different. I’d seen a lot of e.e. Cummings being posted on Tumblr, the post that finally did it for me was one of Tom Hiddleston doing a reading (This is a link to the audio). It convinced me to walk to Waterstones instantly and buy this.

The third book is Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest

I’ve been recommended this numerous times and I’ve never really shown any interest. I basically picked this up on a whim. Whether I will read it… who knows. I want to, I really do, but I think right now is not the right time. I don’t really know anything about it other than what’s in the blurb. Hopefully I’ll read it this year.

Tyrannical Nurse Ratched rules her ward in an Oregon State mental hospital with a strict and unbending routine, unopposed by her patients, who remain cowed by mind-numbing medication and the threat of electric shock therapy. But her regime is disrupted by the arrival of McMurphy – the swaggering, fun-loving trickster with a devilish grin who resolves to oppose her rules on behalf of his fellow inmates. His struggle is seen through the eyes of Chief Bromden, a seemingly mute half-Indian patient who understands McMurphy’s heroic attempt to do battle with the powers that keep them imprisoned. Ken Kesey’s extraordinary first novel is an exuberant, ribald and devastatingly honest portrayal of the boundaries between sanity and madness.”

The fourth book is The Diary of A Young Girl by Anne Frank.

I should think everyone has heard of this one. I don’t think I really need to explain why I want to read it. To be honest I’m a little ashamed of myself for having not read it yet. What am I doing with my life.

“Since its publication in 1947, Anne Frank’s Diary has been read by tens of millions of people. This Definitive Edition restores substantial material omitted from the original edition, giving us a deeper insight into Anne Frank’s world. Her curiosity about her emerging sexuality, the conflicts with her mother, her passion for Peter, a boy whose family hid with hers, and her acute portraits of her fellow prisoners reveal Anne as more human, more vulnerable and more vital than ever.”

The fifth book is Blood Red Road by Moira Young.

I have actually already read this book, but I had it on my Kindle. I loved it. So much I had to buy it. A brilliant kick-ass main character and a great story. I would recommend it to anyone into dystopian young adult fiction. The romance isn’t too in-your-face or mushy its just perfect and believable.

“Saba lives in Silverlake, a wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms where her family scavenge from landfills left by the long-gone Wrecker civilization. After four cloaked horsemen kidnap her beloved twin brother Lugh, she teams up with daredevil Jack and the Free Hawks, a girl gang of Revolutionaries. 
Saba learns that she is a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. And she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Saba and her new friends stage a showdown that change the course of her civilization.”

The Sixth book is The Heritage Reader by Graham Fairclough

This book is one of my text books for my Archaeology Degree. If you’re interested in Heritage then I recommend this.

“This resource is a much-needed support to the few textbooks in the field and offers an excellent introduction and overview to the established principles and new thinking in cultural heritage management.”

The seventh book is Vampire Academy: The Official Illustrated Movie Companion.

I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS FILM! It looks like it is going to be FANTASTIC. I absolutely love who they’ve cast for the movie and I honestly can’t wait for the 19th Feb. I’ve flicked through this book already and a little disappointed that there aren’t more pictures of Danila Kozlovsky. (I kind of love him) But that doesnt matter…

Favourite books of 2013

Image

Just a list of all my favourite book/series that I have read this year. I’ve read a lot of books this year and it was so hard to put them in order.

1) Penryn and End of Days series by Susan Ee (Angelfall and World After)

Angelfall + World After
Amazing start to a series which I believe will be five books. I honestly can’t wait for the next book.
Angelfall: review
World After: review

2) Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead (Vampire Academy, Frostbite, Shadow Kiss, Blood Promise, Spirit Bound and Last Sacrifice)

All_the_VA_books
A series that I should think everyone is familiar with. Entertaining, funny, heartbreaking and ultimately fantastic. I read this series in one swoop in August and still find myself revisiting it to reread snippets.

Series review.

3) Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

CrownOfMidnight
The second instalment of the Throne of Glass series. This is how sequals should be done. Better than the first book and the first book was pretty great. A series everyone should give a go, because there really is something for everyone.

Review

4) His Fair Assassin series by Robin LaFevers (Grave Mercy and Dark Triumph)

His Fair Assassin
The first two books in a trilogy. Brilliant books about assassin nuns. What more can make you want to read this book?! Love love loved it.

Grave Mercy: Review
Dark Triumph: No review available.

5) The Duff by Kody Keplinger

August262010436pmTheDUFF
Love this one a lot. Perfect for a quick read. Great characters even if the storyline is a little predictable.
Review.

6) Maus by Art Spiegelman.

71ofMzK1n8L._SL1404_
Just… wow. All I can say really. Pick this up, you won’t regret it. If you do… there’s something wrong with you.
No review available.

7) The Monk by Matthew Lewis

6932779
One of the few classics I read this year. It’s insane. If you looking for something shocking this is what you need.
Review.

8) Study Series by Maria V. Snyder (Poison Study, Magic Study and Fire Study)

studycovers
The male hero in this is to die for. I love him. Haha… But there is so much more to these books than the romance. Wonderful fantasy trilogy, with a strong heroine.
No reviews available.

9) Starcrossed Trilogy by Josephine Angelini (Starcrossed, Dreamless and Goddess)

starcrossedukseries
All about Greek mythology. I know a lot of people stay away from this when reading Young Adult but I would definitely recommend giving this series a change. It is so action packed and fast paced its great. I’m not overly fussy when it comes to mythology so it would suit someone of the same opinion.
No reviews available.

10) Blood of Eden series by Julie Kagawa (The Immortal Rules and The Eternity Cure)

julie-kagawa-immortal-rules-eternity-cure-book-covers-2
Yeah, another vampire series. But WAIT! with a twist: It’s set in a dystopian world. This series has so much potential to be one of the best Vampire series out there. Its not soppy, and these vampires are no push overs. People who have read Kagawa’s Fey series and disliked it may be put off by any of her other books. BUT PLEASE give this series a go. The writing, the world building, the characters AND the plot is utterly mind-blowing.
Short reviews but its something…
The Immortal Rules: Review
The Eternity Cure: Review

The Monk by Matthew Lewis

Image

Noble and devout, Ambrosio is the abbot of a Spanish monastery who spends his days in prayer. However, his monastery is harboring a malevolent force in the form of a young monk called Rosario. Rosario attaches himself to the abbot and one fateful night reveals that he is in fact a beautiful woman in disguise. From this moment on Ambrosio finds himself seduced into a lurid maelstrom of sin and vice he finds impossible to resist.
————————————————————————————————-

Rating: *****

I find it hard to believe that this was published in 1796. My god, I was thoroughly shocked. I would have been shocked if it had been written in modern times but the fact that this was written over 200 years ago is insane I can only imagine how it was received. I decided to read this when I spotted it on the shelf at Waterstones and remembered it was mentioned in Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen and the Gothic novels mentioned in that book have been on my ‘to read’ list for years. I certainly was not disappointed.

I haven’t really read any Gothic novels before, unless you count Northanger Abbey. So I wasn’t really sure what I was expecting. I certainly wasn’t expecting something worthy of being categorized as erotica. It was hilarious. I just can’t quite express how much I enjoyed this novel. It was refreshing. Definitely a perfect starting place if you’re looking into reading some Gothic classics.

The characters were all well written. My favourite would have to be Ambrosio. Wow, what a man. A prime example of how men, even 200 hundred years ago, think with their dicks. I have to feel sorry for Antonio. This probably is the most messed up book I have ever read. And that is what makes it so good.

I cannot recommend this enough. Definitely one of those books that everyone should read at least once in their life.

Book Haul [#1]

Image

I’ve been in a mood for classics lately. So this month I have picked up a few that I’ve been meaning to read for a while. 

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

“This is Newland Archer’s world as he prepares to marry the beautiful but conventional May Welland. But when the mysterious Countess Ellen Olenska returns to New York after a disastrous marriage, Archer falls deeply in love with her. Torn between duty and passion, Archer struggles to make a decision that will either courageously define his life—or mercilessly destroy it.”

The Monk by Matthew Lewis

“Savaged by critics for its supposed profanity and obscenity, and bought in large numbers by readers eager to see whether it lived up to its lurid reputation, The Monk became a succès de scandale when it was published in 1796 – not least because its author was a member of parliament and only twenty years old. It recounts the diabolical decline of Ambrosio, a Capuchin superior, who succumbs first to temptations offered by a young girl who has entered his monastery disguised as a boy, and continues his descent with increasingly depraved acts of sorcery, murder, incest and torture. Combining sensationalism with acute psychological insight, this masterpiece of Gothic fiction is a powerful exploration of how violent and erotic impulses can break through the barriers of social and moral restraint.”

This one I bought mainly because it’s mentioned in Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen and after reading this review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/6759421) on Goodreads I just had to buy it. 

Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut

“Kurt Vonnegut’s absurdist classic Slaughterhouse-Five introduces us to Billy Pilgrim, a man who becomes unstuck in time after he is abducted by aliens from the planet Tralfamadore. In a plot-scrambling display of virtuosity, we follow Pilgrim simultaneously through all phases of his life, concentrating on his (and Vonnegut’s) shattering experience as an American prisoner of war who witnesses the firebombing of Dresden.”

What Maisie Knew by Henry James

“What Maisie Knew represents one of James’s finest reflections on the rites of passage from wonder to knowledge, and the question of their finality. The child of violently divorced parents, Maisie Farange opens her eyes on a distinctly modern world.”

Looking forward to reading and reviewing these very much.