Catching Up On My Reading List

Originally this was going to be part of a sister review with Rachel, but the book I needed to review still hasn’t come in at the library yet and I have 2 days and a couple odd hours left on my self-imposed book buying ban. Boooo. This time Friday, I will be in Ireland for eight days and I didn’t want to leave you without anything! So here’s a quick update on what I’ve been reading, what I’m currently reading, and what I’m about to start:

as-old-as-timeOnce I realized that there was no way I was going to get my other book in time to review it for this week, I went ahead and started reading As Old as Time because I’d pre-ordered it months before and my excitement level over Beauty and the Beast is already at a high over the new movie coming out and the Disney cartoon’s 25th anniversary. I’ve already read, and briefly reviewed here, the first two Liz Braswell books in the Twisted Tales collection but this one was my favorite so far. Again, it helps that Beauty and the Beast is in my top ten of Disney movies but as far the main characters of the book go, these guys really rocked it this time. Belle isn’t just immediately a likable character, she has depth and complicated feelings that make her feel so much more human than the movie and the Beast’s struggles with remaining human and fighting the need to be purely animal feels real to the character and helps lend light to his temper issues as we see them in the movie. There’s also a lot more back story to other side characters that I really enjoyed seeing. And the ending! Ohmygoodness. It was completely different from what I expected to happen as far as “happily ever after” goes but I’m actually very satisfied with it. Definitely recommend to fairy tale fans!

The brief Goodreads summary: “What if Belle’s mother cursed the Beast?

Belle is a lot of things: smart, resourceful, restless. She longs to escape her poor provincial town for good. She wants to explore the world, despite her father’s reluctance to leave their little cottage in case Belle’s mother returns–a mother she barely remembers. Belle also happens to be the captive of a terrifying, angry beast. And that is her primary concern.
But Belle touches the Beast’s enchanted rose, intriguing images flood her mind–images of the mother she believed she would never see again. Stranger still, she sees that her mother is none other than the beautiful Enchantress who cursed the Beast, his castle, and all its inhabitants. Shocked and confused, Belle and the Beast must work together to unravel a dark mystery about their families that is twenty-one years in the making.”

across-the-universeI also managed to knock a book off of my TBR list that has been there since, oh I don’t know, 2011?? Across The Universe by Beth Revis was always a bit of a quandary for me. I was really intrigued by the idea of the books, kind of a “Pandorum meets emotionless dystopian floating future” but the original cover was, in my honest opinion, AWFUL. I was really turned off by the obvious romance angle they were attempting to play around with in the cover art. That’s why I’ve included the updated artwork, which I feel fits the book much better. While reading this, I told my husband that I really felt he would be interested in it because of subject matter and, as I described it to him, he took one look at the cover of the book and said “hard pass.” The truth is if I were to section off the different genres covered in the book, it would look a lot like this: 50% murder mystery, 30% distant future sci-fi awesomeness, 10% complicated parental figure relationship, and 10% romance. That’s really it. The book starts off like it’s going to make a lot more of the romance than it does and that works for this book. It is definitely a young adult novel, though, with all the angst that comes with; however I sincerely enjoyed it and plan to read the following two books in the series sometime soon.

Goodreads summary: “A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.
Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone—one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship —tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn’t do something soon, her parents will be next.
Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there’s only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.”

 

everyone-dies-in-the-endI am currently reading Everyone Dies in the End by Brian Katcher. I am about 75% of the way through it and it’s pretty good. My one hang up, and I’m trying not to let it be a major one, is that I can’t stand the main character at all. Sherman Andrews is a bit a jerk to put it lightly. He isn’t nice to anyone, his inner monologue about other people make him out to be a bit of a bully and an elitist (which is ironic for someone raised in a modest household by a plumber) and the way he thinks about and talks to the opposite sex is horrendous. I would have already added this book to the DNF (did not finish) pile if I wasn’t bound and determined to stick it out for the sake of a local author. Luckily Katcher redeems himself in his writing tone, which is entertaining and and an easy read, and the story content. Everyone Dies in the End takes place in Columbia, Missouri and follows the summer of a seventeen year old boy enrolled in the Missouri Scholar’s Academy at Mizzou. He is determined to become a world-renowned journalist and in his research while at the school he stumbles upon a mystery dating back to the 1930s. Soon he finds himself the focus of an organization that would like to keep their secret just that-a secret and will do so at any cost. The story flips between present time and the early 1900s as it unwinds its mystery to the reader and it does have me intrigued to see how it ends. Hopefully Sherman will redeem himself a bit in the process but if not, I am trying to tell myself that this is okay. That sometimes the main character doesn’t need to be a hero or even likable to have his or her story told. **I finished this book last night after this post and would give this book a solid three stars out of five. I liked the story, I liked the writing, I’m okay with how it ended, but I never came around to Sherman.**

transferenceI just added two books to my “currently reading” list on Goodreads that I haven’t started yet but I plan to tomorrow. The first is Transference by Angela McCubbins who I finally got to have a semblance of a conversation with a couple of weeks ago. She is as nice as she looked at Librarycon and I’m excited to get to start her book! I plan to have the review for that one out shortly after returning from our vacation. **I started this book this morning!**

 

 

 

unnatural-creaturesThe other is Unnatural Creatures by Neil Gaiman, which was lent to me by a fellow Gaiman loving friend. I’ve had this on my TBR list for a couple of years now but I’ve never pulled the trigger on reading it.

 

 

 

 

 

So that’s what I have coming up! An interesting sidebar – my husband has had some essays for one of his classes (he’s finishing up a degree currently) and he mentioned how hard it was to write an essay with a 350-400 word max (he’s had three of those already) and I kept thinking that’s crazy! Even my shorter blog posts have around 850-900 words and I’m just babbling most of the time. And to prove my point here I am at 1362 words already.

Hope everyone is enjoying their fall reading!

-Angie

(This ends me at 1384 words.)

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