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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

BLURBS:
[close] In 1996, Hanna Heath, an Australian rare-book expert, is offered the job of a lifetime: analysis and conservation of the famed Sarajevo Haggadah, which has been rescued from Serb shelling during the Bosnian war. Priceless and beautiful, the book is one of the earliest Jewish volumes ever to be illuminated with images. When Hanna, a caustic loner with a passion for her work, discovers a series of tiny artifacts in its ancient binding--an insect wing fragment, wine stains, salt crystals, a white hair--she begins to unlock the book's mysteries. The reader is ushered into an exquisitely detailed and atmospheric past, tracing the book's journey from its salvation back to its creation.
THOUGHTS:
The protagonist has a very interesting career, and I have never read anything like it. A Book Conservator, how cool is that. But Hannah Heath's personality did not appeal to me at all. She appears to be stand-offish and a little bitchy. I was also expecting a time warp (on the books journey to Haggadah) instead I find myself wanting to finish each chapter and see if there is something more interesting after the previous chapter. I do like the take on European and Jewish history, that was really fascinating. The whole plot seemed a little loose and I just couldn't hang on it as much as I wish I should have. I still recommend it for people who likes books that has historical meanings (plot wise).

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tantalize by Cynthia Leitich Smith

BLURBS:
Quincie Morris has never felt more alone. Her parents are dead, and her hybrid-werewolf first love is threatening to embark on a rite of passage that will separate them forever. Then, as she and her uncle are about to unveil their hot vampire-themed restaurant, a brutal murder leaves them scrambling for a chef. Can Quincie transform their new hire into a culinary Dark Lord before opening night? Can he wow the crowd in his fake fangs, cheap cape, and red contact lenses — or is there more to this earnest face than meets the eye? As human and preternatural forces clash, a deadly love triangle forms, and the line between predator and prey begins to blur. Who’s playing whom? And how long can Quincie play along before she loses everything? TANTALIZE marks Cynthia Leitich Smith’s delicious debut as a preeminent author of dark fantasy.
THOUGHTS:
If anyone wants this book they can have it. PM me or whatever. I've read this book a little over 4 months ago. The book was extremely disappointing first the story revolves around a family owned restaurant that they decided to turn into a Vampire-like-lair/atmosphere complete with the menu that says: Prey or Predator. Then the protagonist Quince has the saddest story ever written and she then became a vampire by means of "food tasting and wine" how lame was that? She was also 75% drunk althrough out the book. The only thing I like about the book is the cover. Again proven - do not judge the book by it's cover. Her next book is about another vampires, hopefully she can redeem herself on that one.
P.S: hans lemme borrow that after you, not sure if it's worth buying.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The New Kid by Temple Mathews

This book is exclusive only at Borders, no e-books or amazon.com this time.
BLURBS:
Will Hunter is used to being the New Kid; Harrisburg High School is his fifth new school in less than three years. By now, he knows not to be fooled by the bright pep rallies, the wholesome jocks, the innocent cheerleaders. He knows the evil lurking underneath. It's the same evil that took his dad eight years ago; the same evil he battles every day.
Natalie Holand's life fell apart the night her sister Emily disappeared. No one believes her when she tells them what she saw: yellow eyes, glowing beneath the surface of the water in which Emily supposedly drowned. And Emily isn't the only person to go missing in Harrisburg lately. The town is changing, not for the better, and Natalie doesn't know why. What she does know is that, whatever's happening, it's bad, and the New Kid is right in the middle of it.
Because Will's got a secret even bigger than Harrisburg's . . . and there's more to it than even he knows.
THOUGHTS:
Will Hunter fits his name perfectly. Meet the newest Demon Slayer in town. I got this book on the Twilight DVD release party, the cover seems super teeny bop-ish (you know what they say, do not judge the book by it's cover-applies every time) but the story was really good. I like the theme. It was actually quite a refreshing read, maybe because I mostly read about vampires. LOL. Will's character was strong but Natalie's and Rudy were pretty vague. The villain description, which was the demons and her minions were pretty new to me, but how Mathews described it made me a very clear idea on how ugly, menacing and outirght pure evil they were. The succession was pretty predictable and it lacks the essence of that "page-turner" attitude. The quest on finding Natalie's twin sister Emily is what kept me going and the curiosity of what happened to her makes this book worth reading.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Bachelorette Party by Karen McCullah Lutz

BLURBS:
Zadie Roberts was literally left standing at the altar by her now famous soap-star fiance. Even though it was more than six months ago, the last thing she wanted was to be associated with anything bridal. So, when her best friend, Grey, announces that he is engaged to Zadie's conservative and beautiful cousin, Helen, Zadie's life hits a new low--he wants Zadie to get Helen to loosen up a little at the bachelorette party. Not even sure if the prim and proper Helen knows how to have fun, Zadie reluctantly promises to show her a good time. But when the posh, sedate party goes off track and Helen throws her good-girl image out the window for a night of drinking, debauchery, and maybe even one last fling, Zadie is sure this wasn't what Grey had in mind and is torn as to what to tell him about Helen's behavior. Don't look for more than an easy read, mindless fun, and proof that women can be just as raunchy as men.
THOUGHTS:
I looove Zadie. She's crazy, she's sarcastic, she's fun and she is cool. I share the sour feelings for Helen, she's a total fake (but later on agreed with Zadie too, when she finally came out with the truth with Grey, about Cancun). I was amused when I found out Jane was actually a call girl instead of a Flight Attendant. I wonder, is there really such hotel in Beverly Hills that cater to this girls? (I wouldn't doubt it if there was) not to judge or anything just plain curious. Betsy Big Ass reminds me of someone I knew in high school. Marcia and Kim, hmmm... typical suburban wife. Skinny and Snotty, stereotypes. Eloise was equally annoying and indespicable as Helen. Grey was such a romantic but clearly an idiot. Trevor was your typical boy next door hormone crazed crush who you just have to fantasize about. Mike would be your perfect destiny, if you were Zadie. Jack, obviously a complete air head. The Bachelorette party was one quirky and very entertaining read. From having breakfast at the hotel to Kundalini Yoga to drinking by the pool meeting men who turned out to be perverts to scooping up Hustler and buying erotic stuff to riding the bull, clubbing in a prestigious club down to Chippendale's my kind of story. Thank God Lutz lived up to her title and was completely head on with the story. The novel was non-stop laughs and if you're prude you might find the leg press scene vulgar or offensive. This book is far from being in the category of "dirty", there was no blow-by-blow description of a sexual act. There was colorful languages though but i'm here for the story and that's what really counts for me.
P.S - The cover was horrible :(

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Hissy Fit by Mary Kay Andrews

BLURBS:
Interior decorator Keeley Rae Murdock has designed her whole life, right down to the antique Oriental rug planned for the foot of her bed. What she never counted on was discovering her fiancé, A.J. Jernigan, cavorting with her maid of honor in the middle of her rehearsal dinner. She pitches a hissy fit that reverberates through her tiny hometown of Madison, Ga., and captures the attention of Will Mahoney, a newcomer who recently purchased an antebellum plantation house. Headstrong, freckled Will pressures Keeley to restore the rundown mansion within six months. His plan: to woo a woman whom he has seen only on television by designing the house of her dreams by Christmas. Keeley knows it's an insane plan, but the Jernigans are now trying to put her out of business, so she begrudgingly accepts. As the house comes together, Keeley discovers links between the Jernigan legacy of infidelity and her mother's disappearance many years ago. Darker than the book's fluffy title suggests, this black comedy is riven with shocking secrets. And Keeley's vast knowledge of all things antique offers a fascinating peek into the luscious world of designer home furnishing, sure to make readers drool with envy over sideboards and sofas.
THOUGHTS:
Fun but rather disappointing...
The first 3 chapters were promising, after Keeley threw the hissy fit of the century when she found her groom to be doing the deed with her maid of honor/best friend the country club was trashed. I wouldn't blame her and I thought she's going to do something even crazier after that, you know live her life make a f it list of stuff to do or something equally drastic, this is after all entitled Hissy Fit. But no, instead Andrews led me into the world of interior designing. It's an interesting insight I get to imagine antique cherry on cherry study and some other interesting furniture description. Then the story suddenly revolves around her career as such and her quest to find her missing mother, which was actually depressing. And what happened to the ending? It was so rushed like she ran out of ideas and all of a sudden she just ended it with the most predictable of all endings. That was the most disappointing part. Too bad the characters have really interesting personalities. I think the story would have been great if she have stuck to the original idea.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Candy Girl by Diablo Cody

BLURBS:
A copy typist by day in Minnesota, Cody was hardly a likely candidate for entering an amateur stripping contest. But her curiosity got the best of her and, encouraged by her boyfriend, enter she did. The contest left her with an increased curiosity about the profession, and Cody decided to take an evening job stripping at Schieks, a local club. There Cody learns the ins and outs of stripping--how to catch a client's attention, how much the house takes, how some nights are highly profitable and others leave a stripper in debt to the club. Eventually Cody outgrows Schieks and moves on to Deja Vu, a bigger club that's much faster paced. A promotion at her day job forces her to give up stripping temporarily, but before long she's back in the adult entertainment business, this time stripping behind glass in an emporium.
THOUGHTS:
Now I'm sure you've all heard of Diablo Cody right? writer of Juno. yeah that's her and this was her story. I am not exactly prudent and I think strippers are waay cool. They express themselves that I considered art and it also earns them money for college, food, clothing, shelter, or whatever. And I support them me, husband and his friends go to strip joints just of the heck of it, not to diss them of their career choices nor judge them whatsoever. The stripper theme is not what I don't like about the book. In fact Diablo Cody used words that made me check my dictionary. But I am not really crazy about her writing style.The book was an eye opener like the laying spread-eagled on a stage while college guys sprayed your vagina with water pistols. Whoa! Ok cutting the chase now, it was her, she did stripping because she was bored with her too ordinary life she decided to try the amateur night and decided to make a career out of it for a year? If she was in dire need of money it would have been a different story, it this was just strictly for reasearch in the first place and she got sucked in really bad, that would have work for me. And there were parts of the book that I feel like she's trying hard to be edgy. I am disappointed. A quick read, and probably worth reading.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Accidental Human by Dakota Cassidy

BLURBS:
Wanda Schwartz is raking in the dough selling Bobbie-Sue Cosmetics—and she’s a pro at recruiting new saleswomen. So, she’s shocked when a man comes to one of her in-home parties—a very hot man. Heath Jefferson is sure to put some extra spin into a lot of women’s color wheels.
When Wanda is diagnosed with a terminal illness, it doesn’t have to be a death sentence. With a werewolf and a vampire for best friends, she has options that most ordinary people wouldn’t. As Wanda ponders what to do about her mortality, Heath reveals he has secrets, and one of them is that his former bloodlust has turned into an old-fashioned lust—for Wanda. And he’s already given up too much to lose the love of his lifetimes.
THOUGHTS:
It's Wanda's turn to have a story. I got the book 3 days before it's release date and I felt so lucky. Well I thought since Marty's now a werewolf and Nina's now a vampire, I was expecting that Wanda will be something like a faerie or an immortal that drinks that Elixir potion to live the immortal life. Heck no I was completely mistaken. Then I thought Heathcliff Jefferson is going to give that to her, wrong again. But I did figure out that she is dying of that certain cancer, which was heartbreaking :(. Like Nina's story Wanda's full of quirky mishaps and erotic scenarios and a lot of Nina-Marty "word" war match. I can't really relate too much on Wanda's character. I don't do list, I don't know much about make up, I am rarely reasonable, and I can't be the peace maker amongst friends. All we have in common is we read a lot of these dang paranormal novels. Her character is very likable though, not too meek and not to tough either. I am actually more of a combined Nina and Marty personality. I love Heathcliff his straight forward cocky nature and uber sweet personality is exactly what Wanda needs. My favorite part was when she started cussin' hahaha, I like the way she wants to live the remaining days of her life by actually living it. I will do the same thing, except I will tell my friends and family right away. My only protestation was the ending seemed rushed, I guess I was expecting more, after all of all 3 friends Wanda's the one who is all about HEA. (Happily Ever After)

Monday, March 9, 2009

The Expected One by Kathleen McGowan

BLURBS:
Two thousand years ago, Mary Magdalene hid a set of scrolls in the rocky foothills of the French Pyrenees, a gospel that contained her own version of the events and characters of the New Testament. Protected by supernatural forces, these sacred scrolls could be uncovered only by a special seeker, one who fulfills the ancient prophecy of l'attendue -- The Expected One.
When journalist Maureen Pascal begins the research for a new book, she has no idea that she is stepping into an ancient mystery so secret, so revolutionary, that thousands of people have killed and died for it. She becomes deeply immersed in the mystical cultures of southwest France as the eerie prophecy of The Expected One casts a shadow over her life and work and a long-buried family secret comes to light.
Maureen's extraordinary journey takes her from the dusty streets of Jerusalem to the cathedrals of Paris . . . and ultimately to search for the scrolls themselves. She must unravel clues that link history's great artistic masters, including Sandro Botticelli, Nicolas Poussin, and Jean Cocteau; the Medici, Bourbon, and Borgia dynasties; and great scientific minds like Leonardo da Vinci and Isaac Newton. Ultimately, she, and the reader, come face-to-face with Jesus Christ, Mary Magdalene, John the Baptist, Judas, and Salome in the pages of a deeply moving and powerful new gospel, the life of Jesus as told by Mary Magdalene.
THOUGHTS:
Before I start, let me just say that I think the cover is fantastic. Especially the book cover itself (when you take off the leaf of the hardcover). I was going to take a picture but I wouldn't think the library will appreciate the tampering... Anyway, scandalous yes, for the Catholic church and for hardcore catholics this is one of the "garbage book" that they keep warning me not too read anymore but I still do obviously.Yep blasphemy is the word. The story was about a discovery of none other than Mary Magdalene's gospel. The protagonist Maureen is a journalist who went to Jerusalem for research that later on lead to an unexpected discovrey of her history. I applaud McGowan for her brave plot and extensive research on the subject, however, the book wasn't really written very well, the story was unbelievably slow. I hate to elaborate, so I'm not going there. As much as I don't want to compare this to Da Vinci code, I have to, because it turned out very pretentious. Well really... conspirational form, secret societies, contrivance & deception in South of France, biblical characters, renaissance painting with clandestine meanings, and the very tempting idea of "what if it's true?". I do however like Maureen's feminist personality, there were discussions of famous female historical figures that had been maligned through out history, defending them- I admire her for. I did enjoy reading the book, as it is thrilling and gripping but... like what I said above. But I do not think I'm reading the other two books after this first part of the trilogy.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Love, Rosie by Cecilia Ahern

I couldn't have chosen the most perfect timing to read chic-lit genre for this weekend...
BLURBS:
Ahern uses letters, notes, e-mails and instant messages to narrate her poignant second novel about thwarted love and missed opportunities. Plucky Rosie Dunne is infatuated with her best friend since childhood, Alex Stewart, but Alex has always been oblivious. After he moves from Ireland to the U.S. with his family, the two keep in touch, planning to reunite—first at Rosie's prom and, later, at college. But Rosie has the kind of bad luck you see in the movies: Alex's plane is delayed, and so Rosie attends the prom with "Brian the Whine," who promptly knocks her up. Rosie decides to have the baby, thereby missing her opportunity to study hotel management at Boston College and hang out with Harvard-bound Alex. At this point—which isn't very far in—the novel begins to suffer from an overfull mailbox. It seems that everyone in Rosie's life sends her (and each other) missives, and this flood of mail weighs the novel down as the years pass. Rosie Dunne is a worthy protagonist, complex enough to be compelling and ordinary enough to be believable. But Rosie and Alex's early, futile get-together attempts are summarized too quickly to be satisfying, and the letters between Rosie's now adolescent daughter, Katie, and her best friend, a boy named Toby, are too obviously reminiscent of Rosie's childhood correspondence with Alex. Implausibility rears its head again when characters sum up their lives in overly serious, long-winded paragraphs foreign to the chatty, impromptu format of e-mail. But the novel endears despite its flaws, thanks to Rosie and our endless appetite for stories of love finally requited.
THOUGHTS:
I love and hate me some 488 pages of pure love life drama. I love Cecilia Ahern ever since I've read her P.S I Love You book, it has moved me to tears and had the most bizarre symphaty for Holly. But reading Love, Rosie; I'm beginning to think Ahern is a sadist, why? because she makes her characters suffers so much, in this book Alex and Rosie had been best friends since they were 5 years old. it was so heartbreaking to read yet I got all glued to it, I cling to the book for the whole Saturday afternoon and night. It wasn't enough for her that the two characters that I have learned to care for so much is living in a different continent but had the most years of suffering not knowing they are both inlove with each other since the "Boston kiss" happened. This book is pure e-mails, chat room conversation and some texts between Rosie and Alex, along with the other important people surrounding their lives. By page 300, I was exhausted, I mean after Rosie had finally divorced his chauvinist pig husband Greg because he was a cheating bastard, it was clearly and should be the perfect time/opportunity for Alex and Rosie to be together, but no... Brian the Whine has to show up and Alex has to be a jerk by getting back with Bethany the Slut, seriously something was really really wrong about that. But it all worked out for the best. This review had gone too far giving out spoilers and I am stopping right now.
Love, Rosie is a romantic-comedy: hilarious, witty and a page turner. Cecelia Ahern is still one of my favorite authors up to date. She is brilliant and wicked by making me cry, get pissed off and hold the book, refusing to let it go until I finish. I love the ending but I hate the the middle part but I love it anyways because it totally make sense. I regret not reading this as soon as it hit the bookstores 3 or 4 years ago. You'll all understand once you read it.

Fly me To The Moon by Alyson Noel

BLURBS:
When flight attendant Hailey Lane learns the rest of her trip has been cancelled and she can fly straight home to spend her birthday with her boyfriend Michael, she's thrilled. Her early arrival will allow for some additional date night prep time, a definite bonus as she's convinced Michael is about to propose. But when she walks through the door, the surprise that awaits her is not at all what she expected. And as she grabs her bags and flees the scene one thing is clear-her entire future has just been rerouted. So Hailey does the only thing she can: she sets out on a worldwide trip to fix a broken heart. And thanks to free flight passes and long layovers in exotic locales, she finds herself with more options than she could have ever imagined... From New York to Paris, from Puerto Rico to Greece, Alyson Noël takes us on a trip filled with mojitos at every layover, outrageous passengers in every seat, and a cute guy at every gate, as Hailey tries to write her own happy ending.
THOUGHTS:
When was the last time I read a chic-lit? Gaahhh I don't even remember, lately all I read is Vampires, haha so going back to it was refreshing. the title sounded cheesy but I reminded me so much of song... the well, duh! same title. I decided to give it a try. I read this book from cover to cover on a Friday night and you know what? I like it. Hailey's character was very relatable and likeable and the way the succession goes... First Hailey have this gay friend and I always like gay guys being best friends with a character. Next the scene where Hailey caught his boyfriend pants down in a middle of a err... sexual act with another man, that was classic LOL. The her adventure in Puerto Rico, Paris, Amsterdam and Greece after a layover was fun. Then snugging the cute guy who later on became her literary agent was cute. Ok so the ending was not that great and I was expecting more but most part of the book was adventurous. Also the plot and the characters were a bit of a stereotype. But funny stories of a Flight Attendant horrors was informative, amusing and hilarious, I couldn't even imagine the bullshit that they have to endure because it's part of their job. All in all, Fly me to the moon is one quick read, the story wouldn't stick with you and will never have an impact but it is very entertaining.

Friday, March 6, 2009

How To Lose Friends and Alienate People by Toby Young

For Francine, maybe you should just see the movie...
BLURBS:
You'll Never Eat Lunch in This Town Again meets The Bonfire of the Vanities, as told by...a male Bridget Jones? And it all really happened. In 1995 high-flying British journalist Toby Young left London for New York to become a contributing editor at Vanity Fair. Other Brits had taken Manhattan--Alistair Cooke, Tina Brown, Anna Wintour--so why couldn't he? But things didn't quite go according to plan. Within the space of two years he was fired from Vanity Fair, banned from the most fashionable bar in the city, and couldn't get a date for love or money. Even the local AA group wanted nothing to do with him.
THOUGHTS:
I read this 4 years ago and at that time I didn't get all the stuff that he was saying I was in another country and doesn't know half of the stuff that he was talking about and so I have to read it again to fully comprehend the scenarios that he was talking about. I have some good laughs, I mean hello, talk about personality problems, Toby Young have them no wonder he keeps getting beat on relationships, on career and maybe just about anything. But this book is bad, I only got it because of the title, I thought I'll get a really good stroy out of it. As a memoir, it's probably more appropriate as a bathroom/air plane read. Yeah and his obsession with the entertainment industry, was just too... shallow/pathetic? I don't know I mean who am I to judge. Ok, fine I think he's an ass (most of the time through out reading the book part, only). For people who wants a long rant of arrogant and foolish ambition, or whatever this book might work for you. Otherwise you'll find it boring and maybe irritating. Props for the cover and the title of the book though. Applied very well. LOL

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote


For Jennie...

BLURBS:
Holly Golightly, glittering socialite traveller, generally upwards, sometimes sideways and once in a while down. She's up all night drinking cocktails and breaking hearts. She's a shoplifter, a delight, a drifter, and a tease. She hasn't got a past. She doesn't want to belong to anything or anyone. Not to 'Rusty' Trawler, the blue-chinned, cuff-shooting millionaire man about women about town. Not to Salvatore 'Sally' Tomato, the Mafia sugar-daddy doing life in Sing Sing. Not to a starving writer. Not even to her one-eyed rag-bag pirate of a cat. One day Holly might find somewhere she belongs. Until then she's travelling.

THOUGHTS:
Holiday Golighty- she's glamorous, comical, and crazy. I consider this as a short story, because any book under 200 pages is just short. Anyway good friend Jennie asked me which one is better the book or the movie? Hmmm... I am torn because Audrey hepburn played the role and I love the movie, so what I'm goin to do is write the difference of the book and the movie and you'll decide.

Book:
-Mag Wildwood's character have more personality and have more scenes in the book.
- Holly was 18 on the beginning of the book, which makes her a teen slut. Which I admire her for. - Mr. Yunioshi's photographer character was more visible and I cannot picture him as Mickey Rooney, plus he's much dignified in the book.
- The Narrator's name was "Buster". (cracked me up, when I read it)- It had a darker portrait of Holly. - I love dark characters and such, so...- The image in my head when I read: "Holliday Golithly, travelling..."
- 'It's better to look at the sky than live there. Such an empty place so vague. Just a country where the thunder goes and things disappear...' Holly Golightly

Movie:
- Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard!!!
- I am a fan of the 60's and it goes to saying that I like a visual of what they wear how they act and what was New York then.
- You actually see her eating outside Tiffany's.
- the outfits and that long stem cig holder is so enticing.
- the part where she sang "Moon River" by her fire escape.
- it's funnier seeing Mag Wildwood dropped to the floor.

That's all I have Jen, so I guess I like both.

Dracula by Bram Stoker


BLURBS:
Dracula is one of the few horror books to be honored by inclusion in the Norton Critical Edition series. (The others are Frankenstein, The Turn of the Screw, Heart of Darkness, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and The Metamorphosis.) This 100th-anniversary edition includes not only the complete authoritative text of the novel with illuminating footnotes, but also four contextual essays, five reviews from the time of publication, five articles on dramatic and film variations, and seven selections from literary and academic criticism. Nina Auerbach of the University of Pennsylvania (author of Our Vampires, Ourselves) and horror scholar David J. Skal (author of Hollywood Gothic, The Monster Show, and Screams of Reason) are the editors of the volume. Especially fascinating are excerpts from materials that Bram Stoker consulted in his research for the book, and his working papers over the several years he was composing it. The selection of criticism includes essays on how Dracula deals with female sexuality, gender inversion, homoerotic elements, and Victorian fears of "reverse colonization" by politically turbulent Transylvania.

THOUGHTS:
This was when I found out that Bram isn't the first person who wrote a novel about Vamps (written in the English language), it was actually John Polidori titled Vampyre in 1819 and he somewhat based it on Mary Shelly's Frankenstein. But dear old Bram's 1897 had the first world-wide popularity. But they do have something in common, they both introduced Vampires as evil blood thirsty, immoral, cunning and ruthless characters. Bram however brings out the Christian symbolism of the legend, the Vampires fears of the cross and communion wafers, and severe deadly allergic reactions to garlic, the blood bonding, etc. That being said, Dracula is a perfect mirror image of Satan. I'm sure everyone have seen the movie Constantine which stars Mr. Keanu, well like the devil Dracula, has the Catholic warrior named Dr. Van Helsing. The father of all Vampire slayers, for me the original vampire/human super hero of all time. The ultimate center of the story: Saving the soul of Mina Harker. I love reading this book, not only because it's classic, but because all roots from today's vamp books are based on this one, although now most Vamps get the upgrade, like immunity to holy water, crosses and such, living off sucking only on animal blood, unfairly gorgeous for a dead being, etc. What I also like about this book was the fact that Stoker did not really describe a violent scene and he definitely did not stress the erotic elements that all Vamps seems to posses. Plus the dark exotic place where the book takes you, Transylvania, Bulgaria, Munich, Budapest to name a few. This book is also written Victorian style meaning it was composed in an old-fashioned diction, so yeah it was a it hard to understand and a lot of reader did not care to venture in. I have to read it twice, but it was totally worth it. Oh and as far as movie adaptations, I went with Nosferatu the original 1922 film waaay creepy and of course the black and white color scheme helped a lot. Mark Schreck as Count Orlok was no Tom Cruise (Lestat) but he did an awesome awesome job. The difference between the movie and the book: in the move Count did not make any new Vamps but he kills his victims, causing to blame a plauge that ensued chaos.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Alchemyst: Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott

BLURBS:
Twin 15-year-old siblings Sophie and Josh Newman take summer jobs in San Francisco across the street from one another: she at a coffee shop, he at a bookstore owned by Nick and Perry Fleming. In the very first chapter, armed goons garbed in black with "dead-looking skin and... marble eyes" (actually Golems) storm the bookshop, take Perry hostage and swipe a rare Book (but not before Josh snatches its two most important pages). The stolen volume is the Codex, an ancient text of magical wisdom. Nick Fleming is really Nicholas Flamel, the 14th-century alchemist who could turn base metal into gold, and make a potion that ensures immortality. Sophie and Josh learn that they are mentioned in the Codex's prophecies: "The two that are one will come either to save or to destroy the world." Mayhem ensues, as Irish author Scott draws on a wide knowledge of world mythology to stage a battle between the Dark Elders and their hired gun—Dr. John Dee—against the forces of good, led by Flamel and the twins (Sophie's powers are "awakened" by the goddess Hekate, who'd been living in an elaborate tree house north of San Francisco). Not only do they need the Codex back to stop Dee and company, but the immortality potion must be brewed afresh every month. Time is running out, literally, for the Flamels.
THOUGHTS:
This book is packed with action, adventure, sci-fi, history, myth and characters that includes humans, immortals, vampires, weres, ancient gods/goddesses and other creatures that are considered monsters. Lovers of Harry Potter, Narnia, Bridge to Terabithia might want to check this book out.I rarely find a book that accomplishes the term of an Alchemist. There's plenty here that made me went rushing to wikipedia. Like the what the heck are the Golems? A research on Nicholas Flamel himself. Book of Abraham, Homo floresciensis, Methuselah Tree, Bastet, necromancy, Dr. John Dee, The Great Famine in 1315, etc... I cannot put it down. Magical and super entertaining. Bravo for Scott, this is a well researched book and he had put a lot of heart into it. The only downside (but not really so much of a hassles) was there's so many mythical creatures I keep on stopping for research. The book also needs a bit of an improvement, Sophie and Josh's role doesn't seem to have that "higher" calling theme. I also wish to see Perry's stronger involvement on the adventures instead of just being locked up in Alcatraz. After all this is only the first book out of the 6. I've also heard from the grapevine that New Line Cinema has bought the film rights on is now currently on pre-production.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

BLURBS:
Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can't wait. Not for her license -- for turning pretty. In Tally's world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks Tally will be there.But Tally's new friend Shay isn't sure she wants to be pretty. She'd rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world -- and it isn't very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.
THOUGHTS:
Futuristic? Way, way... Our civilization at the present is being called the Rusties in this book. Their future has this thing called The Uglies and the Pretties. When you reach 16, you'll get this full on operation to make you the "perfect" human being. Creepy, I know, it reminds me of James Marsden's movie way back in 98 - Disturbing Behavior, the alteration part only. So if you're things are hooverboard, belly sensor, "future civilization" and action pack this book might work for you. I honestly find it abit mediocre, some parts are bland, and the characters need to have a stronger personality, for me this is borderline overrated. I am still interested in reading the Pretties but that isn't in my eager to read list as of now.

Let The Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist

BLURBS:
Swedish author Lindqvist's debut, a horror novel, offers few twists that won't already be familiar to readers of modern vampire fiction. Oskar, a much bullied 12-year-old schoolboy living in a Stockholm suburb, notices that his next-door neighbor, Eli, has some peculiar traits: Eli only comes out at night, smells like death warmed over and is of ambiguous gender. Eventually, Eli reveals he's a vampire who survives by feeding off the neighborhood lowlifes. Occasionally, his bite accidentally turns victims into undeads who, unaware of their vampirization, go on rampages that end in spectacularly gruesome fates. As sweet as the pure and wholesome friendship between Oskar and Eli may be, it's the gory set pieces that propel the predictable plot.
THOUGHTS:
While I am all about reading, I would say this time the movie was so much better, reading the book is just to compliment the magnificent movie. The book is good (always is) but I do prefer the movie this time. The author spent a lot of timje providing backgrounds and unnecessary entries that made me bored at some point. (I read 3 books before finishing this one). I highly appreciate the book because I have seen the movie first. Now it all made sense and it just made the movie more riveting the 2nd time I watched it. Especially on the part where Eli moves in with this man and then... Oh I cannot tell it'll kill for those who hasn't read the book or watched the movies yet.
P.S: I have a movie copy staight from Sweden from a friend, on avi file though, and I cannot find a media share site that takes the good amount of the file. So if any one can please suggest so i can share it with you guys that'll be great.

The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening & The Struggle by L.J Smith

I LOVE IT!!! Hight recommended. On top priority of every book lovers to-red next on Vampire lore.
BLURBS:
Book 1 - The Awakening Book 2- The Struggle
Elena: the golden girl, the leader, the one who can have any boy she wants.
Stefan: brooding and mysterious, he seems to be the only one who can resist Elena, even as he struggles to protect her from the horrors that haunt his past.
Damon: sexy, dangerous, and driven by an urge for revenge against Stefan, the brother who betrayed him.
Determined to have Elena, he'd kill to possess her.
Collected here in one volume for the first time, volumes one and two of The Vampire Diaries, the tale of two vampire brothers and the beautiful girl torn between them.
THOUGHTS:
The whole plot of the book: Well, after putting off buying this book for so long, I am glad I finally bought it. And let me tell you, I regret waiting for that long. I should have added this on my Vampire collection a long time ago...But better late than never right? So anyway. A lot of people consider this a classic for YA book on Vampire lore, The Vampire Chronicles equivalent for the adults and i would say yes, it certainly is, first publish in 1991 people already fell in love with Elena, Stefan and Damon. I haven't read any of the Vampire Chronicles although I've seen the movies. (oh I know! How could I not? totally unacceptable. that's like the mother of all vampire books) so I couldn't really compare and I wouldn't think that's fair because every book has it's unique quality. But I'd like to say something that (I hope not though) the Twilighters might react about. I honestly think that... for the most part, this is how I wish the Twilight series should be, but I understand Meyer wants her book to be more subtle and you know it worked. But I like this book better than Twilight. Why? ok first I gave me an eerie chill thru my spine on the part when Elena experienced that great Power (the graveyard scene) that gave her so much fear. Smith had this wonderful way of making you feel scared (not to the point that you can't sleep at night or cannot turn the lights off) and I love that, and she showed that vampires can be both freakishly dangerous and sweet at the same time. The book is very dark in a way that it should be. The last chapter of the 2nd book was action pack especially towards the last 10 pages, my heart was thumping heart like everything is being laid in front of me, I was like a live audience watching the whole thing. I am not even exaggerating, it was that intense. My favorite character so far is... Damon (*swoon*) I love the bad boys, in this case, the troubled/borderline evil guy. Snarky, Dark, cold, handsome and is not afraid on his true nature. people will hate him with passion on this book 1 & 2 but... I don't know I haven't read the 2 other books but somethings telling me behind all those menacing evil factors he had this hidden/unearthened character that makes him a Stefan too or maybe something more. That is yet to be found out. Elena... I don't like her that much because she's this Miss Popular / Ice Queen that gave me that feeling that she is a complete brat and that Matt was right when he said "you just want everything revolving around Elena Gilbert" but since she's the heroine I am being considerate. Stefan would be an Edward, but not as much sweeter than Cullen. There I go ago comparing, I should shut it right here. I can honestly predict too, that this is the kind of book (amongst others but I wouldn't compare anymore) that I'll probably read more than twice.

The Mediator Series by Meg Cabot

BLURBS: Shadowloand
Suze is a mediator -- a liaison between the living and the dead. In other words, she sees dead people. And they won't leave her alone until she helps them resolve their unfinished business with the living. But Jesse, the hot ghost haunting her bedroom, doesn't seem to need her help. Which is a relief, because Suze has just moved to sunny California and plans to start fresh, with trips to the mall instead of the cemetery, and surfing instead of spectral visitations.But the very first day at her new school, Suze realizes it's not that easy. There's a ghost with revenge on her mind ... and Suze happens to be in the way.
THOUGHTS:
I was a little ambiguous at first, coz Meg Cabot? Like the Princess Diaries? was just too sweet, but after reading an excerpt, I finally gave it a chance; and I am glad that I did. Shadowland is the first installment of the Mediator series, it's Buffy the vampire slayer of the Ghost land. Susannah Simon, Sophomore in high school who moved from New York to Carmel, CA can see ghost and can even touch them. She helps them find their way to their maker, fulfill their unfinished business, deliver messages to their living relatives and in this book performed a Brazilian exorcism. I loved her right away, aside from the fact that she portrays a cocky New Yorker, she also wears black and exceptionally straight forward. Her new step-brothers are very intriguing part of the book too and I can just smell and picture Carmel from the descriptions it makes me wanna go back to Frisco and visit forever. My favorite moment was when Susannah found out that Father Dominic (her Catholic School principal) is a Mediator too. Not going to have a spoiler on that scene. Let me not forget about the Half Spaniard ghost that I am pretty sure she's going to fall inlove with- Jesse. The mystery of his past life and how he died is one part of the book that I am looking forward into reading. I only gave it a 3 because there is something missing, I just can't pin point it, when I figure it out, I'll let you guys know...
P.SMeg Cabot need a better graphics artist, the cover is pretty lame :c
BLURBS: - The Ninth Key
Everything is going great for Suze. Her new life in California is a whirlwind of parties and excellent hair days. Tad Beaumont, the hottest boy in town, has even asked Suze out on her very first date. Suze is so excited that she's willing to ignore her misgivings about Tad... particularly the fact that he's not Jesse, whose ghostly status—not to mention apparent disinterest in her—make him unattainable.What Suze can't ignore, however, is the ghost of a murdered woman whose death seems directly connected to dark secrets hidden in none other than Tad Beaumont's past.
THOUGHTS:
Ok so the story is pickin up fast, and that's a good thing, I think I'm stuck with yet another series. I am really getting fond of Suze. First she suck punched Dopey, I mean Brad and she continue to mock the "popular" girls. The blopper in this book was a shock. (Spoiler!) I mean dude I would too. All this lady ghost told her was "you gotta tell "Red" that it's not his fault, he did not kill me". And then all of a sudden she met this guy named Tad Beaumont and after researching she found out that his dad's nickname is Red, so ok bingo she got the guy right? But not really... ooops wrong Red, all this time the Red that the ghost was talking about was her new step-brother David. ha! and the ghost was his mom who they pulled the plug off because she's already hopeless as it is. So yeah that beinjg said I am liking the series and I am now buying the book 3.
BLURBS: Reunion
The RLS Angels are out for blood, and only Suze can stop them--since she's the only one who can see them. The four ghostly teenagers died in a terrible car accident, for which they blame Suze's classmate Michael... and they'll stop at nothing until he's joined them in the realm of the dead. As Suze desperately fends off each attempt on Michael's life, she finds she can relate to the Angels' fury. Because their deaths turn out not to have been accidental at all. And their killer is only too willing to strike again.
THOUGHTS:
Ok, so I'm pathetic, so I like the bubbling love affair that is happening with Jesse and Suze, so what? 3rd installment of this series is a fun read. I happen to get really happy everytime a description of Big Sur comes up in this book. As you know Orange County right now is freakin cold to be location in California, it had been raining for 3 weeks, for crying out loud and the temp is at 37-42 degrees. So 4 ghost and a 16 year old psycho, intereseting...
BLURBS: The Darkest Hour
When the nineteenth--century ghost of Maria de Silva wakes her up in the middle of the night, Suze knows this is no ordinary visitation -- and not just from the knife at her throat, either. In life, Maria was the fiancée of Jesse -- the same Jesse who was murdered a hundred and fifty years before. The same Jesse Suze is in love with. Maria threatens Suze: The backyard construction must cease. Suze has a pretty good idea what -- or rather, who -- Maria doesn't want found. But in solving Jesse's murder, will Suze end up losing him forever?
THOUGHTS:
This is the best of the series so far. After book 3, I was beginning to think that the story was becoming pretty lame but wow, it picked up really fast in this book. First Maria de Silva's ghost materializes and it turned out that she was such a bitch and that she cannot spell and wrote lame letters. Then Suze found out 8 year old Jack, the one she was baby sitting from work was also a mediator. Then the drama of when they found Jesse's body in their backyard while Andy and Dopey were digging a hole for a bath tub. Then the exorcism of Jesse and the far out decision of Suze that she will find Jesse in the after life, waaay cool. The cat fight were good and just all of it. And on top of it. Suze obviously finally admitted that she is indeed inlove with Jesse, oh and yeah this time instead of just brushing a finger on her cheek, Jesse finally kissed her on the lips! ha! I can't wait for the 5th book.
BLURBS: The Haunted
Suze is used to trouble, but this time she's in deep: Ghostly Jesse has her heart, but Paul Slater, a real flesh—and—blood guy, is warm for her form. And mediator Paul knows how to send Jesse to the Great Beyond. For good. Paul claims he won't do anything to Jesse as long as Suze will go out with him. Fearing she'll lose Jesse forever, Suze agrees. But even if Suze can get Jesse to admit his true feelings for her, what kind of future can she have with a guy who's already dead?
THOUGHTS:
A Love triangle? everybody loves that, although at the same time it's a big hassle for our beloved love tandem, but that makes it all exciting. Paul Slater is baaaaccckk... with some shocking "mediator" revelations to Suze and to cause serious damage. All I am goin to say is, my favorite part was when Jesse and Paul has the one on one at Suze's house while Brad hosted the hot tub party.
BLURBS: Twilight
Suze has gotten used to ghosts. She's a mediator, after all, and communicating with the dead is all in a day's work. So she certainly never expected to fall in love with one: Jesse, a nineteenth- century hottie. But when she discovers that she has the power to determine who becomes a ghost in the first place, Suze begins to freak. It means she can alter the course of history ... andprevent Jesse's murder, keeping him from ever becoming a ghost -- and from ever meeting Suze.Will Jesse choose to live without her, or die to love her?
THOUGHTS:
Like life, we all have to let go and say Buh-bye to a great series. I can't believe this is the last one. This last book was perfect lots of action and super intense. And yes Jesse is alive! How? OMG, just read it. it is the best, and Suze's father finally moved on. It was such a tear jerker.
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