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Nine Stories

(viewed 559 times)
Book Two.

Salinger drops the reader into these narratives, these worlds and these characters’ lives without explanations and lets you catch up and draw your own conclusions as you go along. I find myself instantly drawn into the story that way; i immediately want to know what’s going on.

Each story is not action packed or teaching morals or has big surprises or even clear cut story lines. Each story is merely a glimpse into the lives of the characters. Some of the glimpses are significant and clearly life changing. Others are more like character studies and/or are heavy with interaction. And some are simply simple stories offering a more typical beginning, middle and end.

I enjoyed them all. I hated not a single one. Every single character was flawed and perfect. Every story gave me something to take away.

(Longer review at:

Bloody Brave

(viewed 542 times)
I had my blood taken for the first time today. It was sprung on me, so I had no time to freak out or throw up. I was so brave and got a lion sticker to prove it.
6th Jan 2014, 12:48   | tags:,,,,,comments (5)

The Hunger Games

(viewed 495 times)
Book One.

I basically read this book in two sittings. It was completely one of those books i didn’t want to put down. I’m still thinking about it as if i’m still reading it, and all i want to do is pick up Catching Fire and carry on reading. I am pacing myself, though.

The first person narrative was a little jarring at first, but i quickly got used to it and really, it’s necessary. The reader needs to get inside Katniss’ head and understand her motivations and conflicting, confused emotions. She’s an interesting character and it’s refreshing to read a lead female character who is truly independent and not defined by the men around her.

(Longer review at:

The Haunting of Hill House

(viewed 474 times)
Book Thirty Three.

The real terror comes, not from spooky things that happen, but from the characters; their thoughts and actions and feelings around and about the things that happen. This book is not (necessarily) a straight up ghost story. There are levels to the reading of the book. You can take and leave haunting aspects as you like; everything could have an explanation, if you looked hard enough for one. I prefer a middle of the road interpretation, choosing to believe there is something nefariously otherworldly about Hill House, but that the characters’ psychology (and psychosis?) also have a significant part to play.

Eleanor is the main character, and she’s a very interesting one. I don’t want to say too much because, out of everyone, it is her character that (for me, at least) sheds doubt on the extent of the haunting of Hill House. She’s an innocent, troubled and entirely contradictory woman who i find infinity fascinating.

(Longer review at:


(viewed 516 times)
Book Thirty Two.

The pattern of the book is interesting. Each chapter consists of a slice of the main narrative, a poem written about one of the characters and a story (often autobiographical) written by the character the poem was about. Make sense? Good.

The fact that the first chapter had me cringing and feeling sick and wanting/not-wanting/wanting to keep reading was an immediate selling point for me (i love to feel uncomfortable and grossed out, because it’s so hard to do that to me).

The main story got pretty damn gross, too. This group of nicknamed strangers locked together in an old abandoned theatre, living a self-induced tortured existence in the hopes of becoming famous once they’re (eventually, in a while, not just yet) rescued.

(Longer review at:
12th Dec 2013, 22:42   | tags:,,,comments (3)

D'you Think He Saw Us?

(viewed 425 times)
I have accumulated a few new housemates.
30th Nov 2013, 21:20   comments (5)

Off the Map

(viewed 555 times)
Book Thirty One.

This is a book about travelling, about adventure and about an alternative way of seeing and doing things. I loved this book. I love that this book exists, and would encourage any and everyone to read it.

I loved reading views and opinions about the world, and ways to live in it that i could appreciate and share. To read about people who see the world in a similar way to me was a joy. I might not agree with everything Hib and Kika expressed, but the fact that they don’t take the world as it is given to them—that they see and think for themselves—was what i most strongly agreed with.

The book is not written as a typical story; it’s not a straightforward account of their travels. Instead it more like snippets and stories of their travels. Time and space skips in large chunks, without pause, and you just have to keep up. I liked it like that. Instead of weaving an intricate narrative, they present you with 30 small ones. It’s a book that you could flip through to read any random chapter and you wouldn’t be thrown into the middle of a story you wouldn’t understand—each chapter is its own story.

(Longer review at:

The War of the Worlds

(viewed 570 times)
Book Thirty.

I was so disappointed with this book, i don’t now how to begin. I read and loved Wells’ The Time Machine, and expected to love The War of the Worlds just as much.

The characters lacked any character. The unnamed narrator of the book comes across as simply an anonymous (and stereotypical) Englishman; he has no real personality. Even the aliens are described only in appearance and movement, with physical facts; there is so little on how they make the narrator feel.

I loved the world created and the apocalyptic/alien invasion setting, but the book as a whole is so lacking. For the time it was written the concepts in the book are incredible, but ideas aren’t enough. There is no real story, at least not one i felt in the least invested in.

After The Time Machine i expected much better. I am now decidedly ambivalent about reading more of Wells’ work.

(Longer review at: