Hello! I haven’t post anything in quite a while because I procrastinated on my summer English stuffs. Oops. However, I have read some great and not-so-great books recently so here they are:
The blurbs are from goodreads.
Throne of Glass:
“After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.
Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.
Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another.
Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.”
Meh. Celeana was just soooo annoying. She’s supposed to be the “most feared assassin” and “perfect seductress” but I saw none of that. She didn’t kill anyone and wasn’t particularly bad-ass. But she was quite resourceful. And perfect seductress? Pssh, I think not. She became a friggin tomato every time she was in close proximity to Dorian and Chaol, the love triangle I did not enjoy.
The plot was somewhat exciting but not really. So basically, meh.
How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller:
“A meth dealer. A prostitute. A serial killer.
Anywhere else, they’d be vermin. At the Mandel Academy, they’re called prodigies. The most exclusive school in New York City has been training young criminals for over a century. Only the most ruthless students are allowed to graduate. The rest disappear.
Flick, a teenage pickpocket, has risen to the top of his class. But then Mandel recruits a fierce new competitor who also happens to be Flick’s old flame. They’ve been told only one of them will make it out of the Mandel Academy. Will they find a way to save each other—or will the school destroy them both?”
Me gusta mucho. I loved Flick, the protagonist, and I loved Joi, his love interest. She wasn’t super tough and aggressive like most females are portrayed in this genre. She was, wait for it. . . different. I read it in two sittings, staying up late at night just to finish it. The plot was fast-paced and exhilarating. And there’s DIVERSITY, which is unfortunately relatively rare in the YA genre.
I highly recommend this book.
Dark Eyes by William Richter:
“Wally was adopted from a Russian orphanage as a child and grew up in a wealthy New York City family. At fifteen, her obsessive need to rebel led her to life on the streets.
Now the sixteen-year-old is beautiful and hardened, and she’s just stumbled across the possibility of discovering who she really is. She’ll stop at nothing to find her birth mother before Klesko – her darkeyed father – finds her. Because Klesko will stop at nothing to reclaim the fortune Wally’s mother stole from him long ago. Even if that means murdering his own blood. But Wally’s had her own killer training, and she’s hungry for justice.”
I started reading this one right after How to Lead a Life of Crime. This was grittier, darker, and more violent. And so good. Wally is an honest-to-god bad-ass, she is tough, intelligent, and resourceful. She does resemble Lisbeth Salander (who is also someone I admire, kind of). There was romance but it was definitely not a large aspect of the novel. The action scenes had my palms sweaty and heart racing. And was once again, there was DIVERSITY. Never have I read about an Asian girl, who is a significant character, in a romantic relationship with a white, nevertheless stereotypically jock-ish, boy. Ever. *slow claps* Read this book, it deserves more love.
Bonk: A Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach
“The study of sexual physiology – what happens, and why, and how to make it happen better – has been a paying career or a diverting sideline for scientists as far-ranging as Leonardo da Vinci and James Watson. The research has taken place behind the closed doors of laboratories, brothels, MRI centers, pig farms, sex-toy R&D labs, and Alfred Kinsey’s attic.
Mary Roach, “the funniest science writer in the country” (Burkhard Bilger of ‘The New Yorker’), devoted the past two years to stepping behind those doors. Can a person think herself to orgasm? Can a dead man get an erection? Is vaginal orgasm a myth? Why doesn’t Viagra help women or, for that matter, pandas?”
As I’ve written in one of my previous blog posts, I find sexuality fascinating. This book was like. . . getting the whole Harry Potter series for 5 bucks. Which I did. 🙂 It was mostly funny though sometimes the jokes she cracked weren’t funny. I giggled and snorted throughout the whole book. It was such an entertaining yet enlightening read. If you’re ever interested in what happens when humans and other species get down to it, this would be a great book.
Have a lovely week,