Sunday, November 23, 2014
Earth Girl trilogy
Over 700 years from now the human race is spread out across the stars. We fled earth looking for what was out there, and we let our home planet fall in to ruin. We have cured every illness and handicap known to man. All save one. The ape maker.
Every few thousand babies, or so, is born with an auto-immune disease which makes it deadly for them to live on any planet but earth. These children are called Apes, throw backs and the handicapped.
The government has set up a strong system which keeps the handicapped supported and separate from the rest of the population but takes care of every need. Everything but acceptance and respect. unfortunately these are the things that matter most to Jarra.
Out of anger at her life and hatred of the norms, Jarra applies to an off world school with has its first year on earth. Her plan is to be better than they are and then reveal to them who she really is, but when faced with people can she really go through with her plan?
This book is amazing. I believe that anyone who works in the mental health field or knows someone with a mental or physical illness needs to read this book. This book follows the tradition of Science Fiction where it challenges social norms and beliefs that are hard to face head on. In this case it challenges our treatment and understanding of those we would call handicapped.
I work would with children who have varying kinds of mental and social disabilities. And I myself am so dyslexic that I could not read properly until I was 16 years old. I tell you this because I want you to understand how liberating this book was for me.
People often do not want to read a book or watch a movie about people who are handicapped because it makes us feel sad or uncomfortable. Also they are often not very action packed and so therefore do not draw a lot of attention from the average reader. This book is different.
In this book the writer invents an illness that is impossible to exist. The main character is as normal as you or me. She is smart, strong and kind. But in her world she is living with a debilitating handicap. Because of this we as the reader get the chance to look without fear or awkwardness in to the lives of those who are different and to see how often what we do to be nice is more painful then the things people do on purpose to be mean.
I have read thousands of books in my life and very few of them have touched me in such a personal and profound way. If you are looking for a book that will challenge your way of thinking and help you to understand those who are different from you, but is also fun, interesting and adventurous. Then this is the book for you.
For me this book is a 10 out of 10.
Sunday, October 26, 2014
"Gates of Thread and Stone"
Lori M. Lee
Gates of Thread and Stone #1
Imagine a world in which magic and technology developed and competed side by side. For a long time magic was dominated. But as time moved on technology coat up to the wonders of magic and made it so that anyone with the press of a button could perform wonders.
Fearing the end of the way of magic, they attacked those devoted to the way of technology. This led to a war that destroyed everything. Magic all but left the world and few advanced tech remained.
From that destruction, one town came in to being. A town of pain and cruelty. A time of fear and death. but with in that is one girl who is good and light, and although she does not know it yet she just might be the answer to everyone’s wish for a better life.
I really enjoyed this book. The world was pretty cool; it really reminds me of that old 1980's movie "Wizards". Although the book is not quite as weird as that movie. The main character was interesting and the writing style was quick passed and engaging.
The plot was a little simple. She basically wrote the "heroes journey", but in an attempt to be something else, she often got side tracked and started going in odd directions. Luckily by page 100 she gets in to her groove and focuses on what she really wants to say. That’s when I was hooked. The author is still finding her voice but what she had written is amazing.
I would give this book a 7.8 but if the next ones in the series are increasingly good I would increase that to and 8 something.
Saturday, September 27, 2014
Allies and Assassins
Enemies of the Prince, #1
As the next in to the princedom Jared lived a almost care free life. Yes he has to hunt and go to boring meetings but for the most part he is left to himself. Also Jared knows that when his brother has kids he will be removed from the line of succession. Sadly for him all that is about to change.
The great prince Anders has been murdered, and Jared must now run the princedom. But with the death of his brother over his head and the council fighting each other and plotting against each other will Jared have time to learn how to rules the country before he himself becomes the target of assassination?
I Really enjoyed this book. The writing was clear and strong. The characters are interesting and relatable. I spent the whole book with my mind racing trying to both find the killer and understand the political back baiting and undercutting taking place around Jared the main character.
The story really pulled me in and I enjoyed the time the author took to help the reader understand not only the main characters but also everyone else. Because of this the book had a sense of completeness to the world and the people in it.
My only real problem with the book was that I guessed who the killer was within one page of meeting him. And although the book does a good job of trying to cover up the killers actions and confuse the reader. I still knew it was him so this made a lot of the false tracks in the book boring and uninteresting.
Over all I would give this book a 7.5 out of 10, but I think the next book has a lot promise and if its good this number may go up.
Friday, July 25, 2014
Life is hard in High school. It’s even harder when you have known your destiny sense you where born. But for Calla it’s even worse because she is a werewolf, and the soon to be alpha of a new pack.
All of that may just change when Calla can't goes against her kind’s greatest rules and saves a young, cute, human boy. With Him by her side Calla starts to question everything she has ever known and everything she was destined to be.
But will she have the strength to turn against everything and everyone she has known for the love of a strange boy and the hope of true freedom?
Over the entire book was pretty good. The plot and characters where pretty similar to a lot of romantic fantasy that I have been seeing sense twilight came out, but as fare as the genre goes this one was one of the best.
The plot twists are simple but powerful. The ideas shown in the book are interesting and compelling; especially to a young reader who is questioning there place in the world as we all did.
In the end the whole series is quite good and worth a look. The ending of the book was great but the ending of the series pissed me off a lot, although I do find that does happen a lot.
I would give this book a 7.8 out of 10.
Thursday, June 5, 2014
"The Cry of the Icemark"
The Icemark Chronicles #1
In the frozen north lives a hard and proud people. The people of icemark are on the eve of their princess's coming of age. On her birthday she will become recognized as the next ruler of icemark, and she will be able to marry.
When a powerful enemy from the far west, who has never been stopped before, attacks icemark the king leads a small armed party to stop them. In the end the king and his men died to the last man but they gave the princess and all the rest of the people time to get away.
Now she must seek out allies who where once enemies, and friends who she never new even excited. Together they might be able to fight off this enemy, but will she be able to find them in time.
This is a good book for teens and young adults. Although this book will never be in my top 10 favorite books of all time it is still really good. I read through the whole book very quickly and never even put it down.
The main character is strong and powerful. She is both honest and strong. The writer has created a world that we both know and that is new to us. The book is interesting in many ways and worth a quick read.
I would give this book a 6.8 to 10.
Saturday, May 31, 2014
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Brian K. Vaughan
Saga Monthly Comic
The largest planet in the know universe is at war with its own Moon. One side winged humanoids focused on science. The other side are horned humanoids who use magic. For years and years the planet and its own moon, science and magic, fought a bloody war causing massive destruction on both of their worlds.
Over time the war was outsourced to other worlds until it covered the whole galaxy. In the end every world has been made to choose a side. Science or magic, horns or wings, planet or moon.
In all of this war and chaos two lovers, one from the moon the other from the planet, find each other and marry. Now with a baby on the way will they be able find safety from both sides of the war? Will they ever find a place to call home, and can they create a peace or just greater war.
This is an amazing comic book. This comic might be the best one writing in the last 10 or 20 years. I would put in on par with "Watchmen", "V for Vendetta" and "Sandman". So far there is only three collected volumes but it is still on going.
The story is rich and full. The characters are likable but honest. Whenever I read one of these comics I can't put it down and when I'm done I crave more. This story is about war, love and family. It is powerfully emotional, but also highly relatable.
The writer also blends science fiction and fantasy perfectly in a way I have never seen before. Other writers have tried to blend these two but it has always felt awkward to me, until now.
There is one thing I would say is a negative. The comic is a little overly gratuitous, to the point of being border line pornographic at parts. The violence can also be extreme and unpleasant to see. This means that this comic in not for anyone under the age of 18.
Over all I would give this comic book a 9.5 out of 10.
Friday, May 23, 2014
Vampire Academy #1
In the heart of Montana there is a school. Like most schools this one has teachers, students and classes. the school teaches math, science and history. In almost every aspect this school is like any other high end academy, except for the fact that this one is full of Vampires.
Rose is a Dhampir and the personal body guard in training to her best friend, Lissa, the last vampire princess of her line. Both of them went to the vampire academy for years but after being warned by a teacher of a threat against Lissa's life they ran away.
Now after living on there own for two years they are heading back to the academy, but after being on there own for so long can they fit back in with the other students? Even worse can they find out who is trying to kill them?
The best way to think of this book is Harry Potter Meets Twilight. It has a little more romance then Harry Potter but a lot more action then Twilight. Over all I really enjoyed this book and the whole series. It was a fun quick read.
This book also adds some interesting ideas to the vampire myth and Mead has created a world that leads the reader to wish they where a part of it. The characters and world are very compelling, and help the reader to believe in the impossible.
My only real complaint was that the writing was a little awkward in her delivery of the story. She had more then one time in which I wanted more or less information. The good news is that she fixes most of these problems in the next book and all of them by the end of the series.
Over all I would give this book a 7.3 out of 10. Fun, creative, and interesting.
Sunday, February 16, 2014
Rylee Adamson Series #1
Rylee is a seeker. If you don't know what that means your not part of our world and you should stop reading right now, burn this book and pray you did not catch the attention of anything more powerful then yourself.
If you are from our world, she can help you. Rylee can find anyone for you no matter where they are and she can stand with you against the darkness. She has allies from across the magical world, but she also has enemies.
The FBI is investigating Rylee for her sister's death from five years ago, and for her involvement in the finding of several kidnapped children.
So if you are desperate and in need of help call Rylee Adamson.
This is a really fun book. If you have read the Dresden files you will love this book. The Rylee books is a watered down version of the Dresden files with a strong female main character, and a more romantic vibe.
I really liked the book. The over all feel was strong and involved. Mayer took an original view on many classic horror and fantasy monsters. I was pulled into the story and plot my powerful characters, strong hooks and interesting twists and turns.
To be honest I was really scared of reading this book because I found it on amazon with my Kindle. This book is mostly self published and all of this lead me to be a little nerves. Don't be though, this book is great and the writer should be on your list of your favorite books.
I would give this book an 8.1 out of 10.