Tuesday, November 6, 2012

For the fans of A Song and Ice and Fire series...

So all of you fans of A Game of Thrones are probably sighing because you've finished the series and the HBO show doesn't come back on for several months at least for season three. I have the answer to get you through the winter months.
If you loved A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin I give you The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.

Although there are two books, they are NOT a series. So if you feel like stopping after the first one you can. I don't know about you guys, but this really appeals to me as a reader. Especially lately when every single book you pick up is the beginning (or middle) of a series. 
In any case, Pillars of the Earth is a great read. If you like the medieval-esque setting, strong female lead characters, and very evil antagonists, you're going to love this one. 
You won't find any dragons or sorcery in these books, however. It's historical fiction versus fantasy. 
I will warn you, it's a tome - at around 1,000 pages it's very heavy, so get it on your e-reader. (Unless you want a good workout for your arms!)

And then of course, you can go ahead and read the sequel if you so choose. It has some of the same characters, but also some of the grandchildren of the characters from Pillars. I devoured these books my senior year of college, staying up extremely late (4 AM kind of late!) just to finish it after I'd done my homework. The characters from both of these books resonated with me and that was what really pulled me into these rich stories.

And if you find you really love these stories, they've even made a TV show out of Pillars. I watched it and I was happy with it and usually I'm such a purist when it comes to books to big screen conversions.

So I have a list about a mile long of books I want to read. Check it out and please let me know if you have read any of them - the list is never ending!

Two awesome things I have found this week: Secret bookshelf passageways and I LOVE these children's literature inspired bedrooms!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Passing out candy to the kiddos and squeezing in a blog post!

Handing out candy is surprisingly fun. I'm glad it ended up being on a Friday night so that I'm not working!
I've seen some Spidermen, one Spiderwoman, and several Dorothys. And there were also the usual blood-soaked zombies/draculas/grim reapers. I still think my sister had the most original costume when she was a table set with a plate, knife and fork with a side of cheese and grapes. It was pretty amazing.

I started reading this book, This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz the other day. It's raw and real. I love books about relationships and this one draws you right in. The characters are real and well developed. I love it so far. 

I'm still slogging through Abarat: Absolute Midnight which I love but am reading slowly and I'm also slowly reading Breed. I just need a weekend to do nothing but read so I can get through everything!

In other news, this is in my life and I'm very happy about it as you know (or should know) I'm obsessed with LOTR and The Hobbit and anything at all that J.R.R Tolkien created.

What were you for Halloween? 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Handmaid's Tale: Great Until the End

Spoiler Alert will be on throughout this post, just so you know.  Although everyone has already read The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood because it came out in 1998 so it hardly matters.

In any case, I was very excited when I read the description for THT. I thought, Great! More teen dystopian lit for 2012! Then I found out it was written in 1998. And then I realized that the story was great until the end which is a complete crap ending.

All in all, I thought it was much like 1984. Which is a book that I adore and respect, obviously as I love dystopian stories. However, this had the same plot as 1984. The initial setup to show how the world works nowadays, the dissenters dreaming of ways to rebel, and the ways that they do rebel. I'm sorry, but after the buildup of this book, after all the ways women are ignored, shunned, and forced into horrible actions, the ending was too abrupt.

It left the reader wondering if she was saved by an underground railroad-esque operation or if she was killed by the government. All in all, I was thoroughly unimpressed. I put in all that time reading up to the annoying, unresolved ending!

Thanks, Margaret Atwood. Thanks a lot.