Thursday, December 2, 2010

Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Genre: Young Adult/Paranormal
Beautiful Darkness is the continuation of Beautiful Creatures which I read sometime back. In my review of the first book, I really loved the paranormal elements in Beautiful Creatures and in Beautiful Darkness the authors managed to make the paranormal aspect of the book as good, if not better than the first one.

In the sequel, the book picks up almost immediately where the first book ended. Lena is distraught and unable to cope with the death of her Uncle, Macon. Her character changes drastically becoming darker, unpredictable and unreachable even to Ethan. Lena deals with her grief by pushing Ethan away and as much as Ethan tries to help, he is unable to connect with her and fears that he is losing her to the dark side.

Like the first book, I'm still not really into the romantic relationship between Ethan and Lena. Ethan still seems too obsessed with Lena and I personally think his love and obsession for Lena can be a bit overwhelming to read. Other than his obsession with Lena, Ethan's character and his role in the caster world is actually quite interesting to follow and I felt like I couldn't turn the pages fast enough to find out where Ethan fits in the order of the caster world.

There are also other characters that I love in the book making the book interesting to read like Amma (I absolutely love her), Marian, Liv, Link, Macon and Ridley and their presence makes the overall story more interesting. As I mentioned earlier, I love the paranormal aspect in the book and I felt that the sequel was so much better than the first. I love the magic surrounding the caster world and can't wait for the next book to be out to read more of it. The bad news? I probably have to wait another year before the next book is released... bleargh...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Room by Emma Donoghue

Author: Emma Donoghue
Genre: General Fiction

When I heard about Room I couldn't help but wonder if the book was in any way inspired by true events that happened in Vienna sometime back. Whether or not inspired by true events, this book has been receiving many positive reviews and was longlisted for the Booker prize and recently won the Hughes Novel of the Year Award which it rightly deserves.

In this amazing novel, the world of 5 year old Jack is limited to a 11-by-11 foot room in which his mother is being held against her will. Jack provides an amazing story of his experience living in a small windowless room. Through his narration, Jack details how his young mother survives being captive for seven years and her efforts in making things as normal as possible for her son with the limited resources available.

Jack's voice gives the story warmth and provides a unique, innocent perspective of the horror his mother experiences as a captive. The storyline and the characters captured my attention and got me hooked from the first page. I could not put this book down till the end.

I have much respect for Jack's mother in this book. Her strength and her ingenuity in making things as normal as possible for her son in the prison they call Room is admirable. Room also highlights the strength and goodness that would come from a strong mother and son relationship in such harrowing circumstances.

Room is a definite MUST READ. 

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