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Oliver Twist
George Cruikshank, Charles Dickens, Philip Horne
Looking for Alaska - John Green This is a wonderful coming of age story. I can totally understand why people (And by people I mean "people who mostly read contemporary and young adult") gave it so high ratings. But for me (this is totally personal opinion) I would say I didn't like the writing style of John Green or you can say I didn't like the writing even though I loved the story. The story is mainly focused on one question "How will I ever come out of this labyrinth". The labyrinth in this case is the sufferings of our lives. We all suffer throughout our lives, for one reason or the other. And the author tries to describe how we should tackle with these sufferings and what is the actual way out of these sufferings, if there is a way that is. It was a very beautiful theme, great story but poorly executed. Here's a list of what I didn't like in the book despite it being a great story.1) I didn't like was the "before" and "after" thing. I think I would have enjoyed the book more had it been straight forward. Just like many contemporary writers do I think John Green by doing this tried to include some unique element in the book and in doing that forgot the basics. The "before" and "after" thing deludes you for quite a bit about the actual theme of the book. Thats why it took me a little too much time to get into the book. Because of this it was also difficult to understand the book in a general way. I would have much preferred if the writer would have kept that part in a simple and natural way.2) I think the characters lacked focus or I should say didn't create enough passion for me to love them, especially the 2 lead characters, Pudge and Alaska. I mean I liked The Colonel, The Japanese Guy "Takumi" and Lara more than those 2. Just to seek attention of the readers John Green tried to make Alaska's character more and more complex and absurd. I mean who doesn't have problems and regrets in life? We all do. But that doesn't give us a freedom to behave oddly and quirky. This was one reason I just couldn't like Alaska as hard I tried and the reason I didn't like Pudge was that he loved Alaska just because he though she was sexy. This was not realistic at all. This is where good writers are separated from great writers, The Chracterization. Great writers have great stories and force you to love the characters whereas good writers have a great story but the characters lack the bite, lack the X Factor. I have to say John Green falls into the latter part.3) This was a very short book yet both the "before" and "after" parts felt a bit stretched. In the "before" part because of the unique thing John Green tried to bring in and the weird characterization it just took too long to get into the book. It took me more than 50-60 pages to focus onto it. This is a bit too much for a book which contained just 272 pages. In the "after" part the story actually catches your focus and is unputdownable as the book takes a totally different direction then what you feel after reading the first part. Yet there were things in this half which were a bit monotonous and repetitive. I don't mean to say that this book should have been short. No, its already short with just 272 pages. What I am saying is John Green rushed into everything. He didn't create a proper atmosphere for the story, didn't give enough time to the characters to make them lovable or atleast more understandable. Characters are enjoyed the best when you know them what and how they are. Unfortunately this didn't happen. The atmosphere was never created into the book and thats one more reason I would say Green is a good writer but not great.Overall I would say that this was a good book, great story, especially when the second part started I couldn't put it down but it certainly hasn't made me feel glad that I bought it or hasn't done enough for me to read more of Green.
Water for Elephants - Sara Gruen I am glad that I read this book. But it could have been so much better, the story was so good. The book could easily have been 5 stars but the writing was very poor. The characterization was very week. I tried hard to love the characters because I loved the story but just couldn't do it. The characters liked the bite, were flat, they were quite dull, very much predictable and way too sympathetic to be believable. I don't think so I am overstating it by saying that this book could have been one of the best historical fiction novels of all time had the writing been upto the mark. I would still recommend people to read this, because it is very unique book but the biggest mistake one can make (just what I did) is to enter into this book with a lot of expectations.
A Time to Kill - John Grisham 'The Pelican Brief' was the first Grisham novel i read a few months back. Even though I was not appealed by the book there was something in the writing style which caught my attention. I decided that very time that I have to read Grisham again, so I picked up this book. This has to be one of the best crime or suspense thriller book ever written by an American. Usually i don't like Americans when it comes to thrillers. They try to create too much mystery, try to attract too much attention. This not only makes the book unreal but also makes it a far too casual read. Most American readers and authors don't take thrillers seriously, for them it's casual only. But with Grisham in this book it was totally different. He had a professional manner about him, sticking to the point always and not unnecessarily trying to stir up any mystery or plot twists. Not only did he describe through the story, the law as it is, but surrounded great and real happenings outside of the courtroom as well. Most importantly this book, unlike most thriller books by American writers, was not just about a casual fiction story but it stirred up great emotions and thoughts as well. It touches your heart and makes you think about your certain prejudices. And when a thriller book does that, it has to be a top read. What better than a book which thrills you throughout and still leaves you with a moral dilemma?More review to follow. . . .
The Book Thief - Markus Zusak YOUNG WRITERS BEWARE:If you ever aspire to be a great historical fiction writer then this is a book you should avoid. Not only disappointing, this book is an absolute shit of an historical fiction novel. Please don't judge me by my language as I am not blaming those many who recommended me this book nor do I have any hatred or malicious feelings for the writer. But simply what I am saying is i really don't like it when someone writes historical fiction, he himself has not witnessed, and not only makes his own opinion of it but also tries to alter some of the things his way, his manner. That is exactly what happened with this novel. I don't think so the writer did any proper research into this book or collected good knowledge of the time he was writing about. He, so many times tried to mention the historical facts of the nazi Germany and other things in his now manner and form a particular opinion of it in his self-indulgent writing style. Without going into much detail i would say that this book has insulted the historical fiction genre, of which I am a big fan. Almost every 3Rd of my book is a historical fiction of some kind, and this has to be the worst of all those i have read before. I am not complaining much about the writing style or the story but complaining about the simple basic things you need to know when writing a historical fiction. It clearly suggests how much the standards of historical fiction have gone down in the last decade. If this is the historical fiction people like these days then I have to say I must stop reading contemporary historical fiction or historical fiction written by very young modern day writers. Markus Zusak, even though the worst so far, is not the first modern day writer who has made me feel this about today's young historical fiction writers. It just makes me remind of the Folletts and the Archers and the Brians and the Smiths and a few other writers i have read from the past who just knew the art and the trade to write historical fiction. Historical fiction is one genre which needs the most study and dedication and knowledge and research because you have to mix everything into it without disturbing the setting and the facts of the past. The modern day writers just don't do any hard study into the genre and do poor research and they just lack the skill to write the genre. And the world war and such are easy targets for them, just write something bad about Hitler or Stalin or any other ruler and how the people suffered in their rule. We all know so much about those things having read about it from our school days. They even lack that bite to create their own story in historical fiction. That's why with most of them you read one over rated so called best seller and they disappear from the genre. If they are really good at it they would write more of it like Khaled Housseini. Or take the example of J.K. Rowling from fantasy genre. The fact that she has written so much about that genre suggests that she has a proper knowledge and art about that thing. Those who have read the historical fiction authors from the past I mentioned would know and understand it i would request to those people not to read this. And yes, what was that? What was that which made me read this book? Yes, I got it. That this book is about the power of books to inspire and change many lives. Oh my, publishers! How do you market a book. . .! I think I dislike you even more than the writer. I was deluded. This book is fully about nazi Germany and world war 2. The book thieving and it's power is just a backdrop, hardly much relevant to the main story. In fact it comes only at the very end when the book was already way too overstretched.I think I should stop here only. If I go on i could even end up writing a mini pocket book on things i didn't like in this book. I have given it 2 stars out of sympathy but I really hate it when someone makes a mockery of historical fiction by writing on easy topics like the world war and writing it so poorly and in a self indulgent manner. If you want to write about it, better write documentaries.
Between Shades of Gray - Ruta Sepetys Wow... !!!! That's all I can say for now about this book. I don't seem to get words to describe the beauty of this book. Maybe I will come up with a review, maybe not, I am not sure for the moment. It is quite a similar experience to what I had when I read [b:The Kite Runner|77203|The Kite Runner|Khaled Hosseini|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1309288316s/77203.jpg|3295919]
A Dangerous Fortune - Ken Follett Copied from a testimonial:"Good thrillers are like elegant geometrical proofs. Their drama lies not in their ultimate outcome but in their method. Though we know that the good guys will eventually triumph, we don't know how; a good thriller should keep us guessing until the last page. Ken Follett does just that."This is the first thing I had to say about Ken Follett when I completed this book. For long Jeffrey Archer has been my favourite writer and I have believed the fact that I can count on fingers the number of writers who are equally good if not better than Mr. Archer in story-telling. I think I have just come across one of those writers in Ken Follett. There were quite similarities I found out between the two. Even though this is the very first Ken Follett book I have read I can pretty much say that he's a master story-teller. As mentioned in the testimonial, you know a writer is a great writer if he can make a predictable thriller as exciting as possible.At first I was not quite sure what this book was about. I thought it was about a murder, a crime story. But it was far different from that and that is where I like this book. Normally one would continue writing about the crime and it wouldn't have been bad either. But Follett has done the duel thing, not only has he written about the crime but he's mostly focused on its effects on several peoples lives. It was not about the crime but the aftermaths of the crime. How deeply can one hidden crime can change the lives of all the people involved in it. How it can make them more suspicious of each other and how they can become more villainous. Though a bit predictable this book has a mix of everything you want in a fiction book - love, friendship, drama, crime, rivalry, treachery, suspense, thrill, family-saga etc... When someone can cover so many topics in one book, it more often than not is bond to be an excellent book. The most striking thing perhaps I think about this book was its setting. The historical details makes this book an instant like. The men's clubs and brothels, the ballrooms, the 19th century villas and carriages, the ethich of the liveried footmans and butlers is all perfectly set up by Ken Follett. It was like going back into time and witnessing all these things. I felt myself transported to London and fell in love with the city. The setting was so good. Wherever the story lacked the bite, the setting more than enough made up for it.The character development is another thing why you love this book. Right from the start it makes you feel sympathy for all the people involved in the drowning incident and you are not able to decide which character you like the most. Most of the book goes on like this only, you are not able to guess for yourself what exactly do you want from the characters even though you know what you want from the story. Though not absolutely lovable the characters are quite captivating.Now talking about the reason for which I decided to write this review. The Story-telling. Its not an easy thing to write family-sagas, and describe the feelings of the characters for 30 years. So much changes in that time period. But Ken Follett in this book certainly has set a mood and created an atmosphere which has made it deeply engrossing. I especially liked the fact that Follett kept his writing very simple and to the point all the time, nothing so extravagant just to excite the readers and things not related to the story. All 568 pages of the book are very much linked up with the story. Many a times when the book is set over decades writers drift away from the actual plotline and thats what blights a great book. There was only one thing I didn't like in this book and that was the reason why I am not adding it to my favourites. The thing was the relationship between Hugh and Maisie. How can you fall so deeply in love with a person with whom you have spent only 1 night, and Maisie and Hugh in this case feel in love on that very night only when they spent time with each, it was not like a haunting memory which made them love each other. And before that night they used to hate each other. Through out the book I was never able to understand their love for each other though I would have to just like everything in the book, it had a good end but I am certainly not up for one-night stands. I wish it could have been written better and more realistic feelings or at least should not have been a one night feeling. I very much gave the book 4 stars because of this thing but decided against it because it would have been unfair as the rest of the book was so perfect that it reminded me of Jeffrey Archer's [b:Kane and Abel|78983|Kane and Abel (Kane and Abel, #1)|Jeffrey Archer|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1312011887s/78983.jpg|1084150].Despite a few faults in the book, especially the one I mentioned above this book had moments when I felt I should complete the book at the very go. It certainly made me stay awake at nights and want to read more of it. I usually give a book 5 star when it ends and leaves me with a feeling 'Oh..! why did it really end. I liked it so much.' This book certainly is one of that and it has given me one more writer who I am a fan of. Just like I have taken the oath with Jeffrey Archer, I will do the same with Ken Follett and try to read most of his works. Because of his genius story-telling I really feel he can become one of my favorite writers along with Archer and I am very much excited to think that this book which is not best of his works has made me so intrigued, then how good the others be. I would recommend it to all those people who like real life dramas.
The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett I usually do not read much of children's stuff because most of it comes in fantasy which I don't like. But this one was Realistic Fiction, very much believable and with a very good message. I am glad I read this.
The Immigrants (paperback) - Howard Fast I wish I could give this book 5 stars, I really wish I could because I loved the story pretty much. The thing which kept me from giving it 5 stars was the quality of writing. I would have been unfair to some other books I have read had I given this book 5 stars. The thing I didn't like was the lack of focus of the characters. The characters were not properly built to feel or have emotions for them. I never felt sad for a particular character when something bad happened to them nor did I feel glad when something good happened. It was just like I could have eaten anything the writer would have dished up. Howard Fast did not create enough enthusiasm and depth in his characters. Even though the story was inspiring and engaging without any dull moments, the characters weren't. With this type of writing I could have even done with giving this book 3 stars but I give it 4 for 2 reasons:One - I really loved the story and the ending was very touching.Two - The theme and some other parts of the book reminded me of my favorite book of all time ([b:Kane and Abel|78983|Kane and Abel (Kane and Abel, #1)|Jeffrey Archer|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1312011887s/78983.jpg|1084150]).I absolutely love family sagas and historical fiction especially ones which cover a good number of years. I read atleast 1 family saga or historical every month. This book had a touch of both of those genres. It tells the stories of 4 Immigrant Families (Italian, Jew, Chinese) trying to find a way in America. They are ready to do any work they get and how they make their rise through rambles covering along the way all the effects of the 1906 earthquake and then the First World War and ending with The Great Depression in 1930's. Despite the characters being quite flat the story revolved around the years quite beautifully. It showed the adolescent and ad nauseam views of a boy who thinks and dreams of things which are not only out of his reach but only available to the rich. He gives his all in reaching to those things, that position meanwhile forgetting who he is and not knowing what life is. The book ends with a lot of moral though on life and lets us know with emotions the main theme that "one can have a wonderful life without riches or power".This series is as long as 6 books and even though I didn't particularly like the writing and the character development part, I think it was good enough for me to go on to read the 2nd book of the series and may be then the characters would make more sense as the characters are the same throughout the series just the story advances into different generations.
Wuthering Heights - Emily Brontë Possibly the worst book I have ever read. More review to follow.
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger 3 Stars is what I would say this book deserves. The only reason for my having given this 4 is because of the character on whom the whole book is surrounded - Holden Caulfield.Characters are the main thing which make a particular book good or bad. You can sometimes cope with not so good a story, can also cope with not so good writing but you can never enjoy a book if you don't like or love its characters. We come across several books after reading which we feel "oh i want to be this character or that character in my life." Seldom do we come across books after reading which we say "I think the character perfectly personifies myself." Thats what I felt after reading Holden Caulfield in this book. I have never read a book in which I found so much similarities in myself and the book character. Reading about Holden Caulfield in this book was like reading my own memoir or my own inner thoughts. What personification... !!! I am not going to write about what similarities I found because I don't want spoilers in the review and I don't want to share my personal life here as well.Coming to the book, I thought the writing was not so good. Repetitive usage of the same words and phrases made the book quite monotonous at times. The book was merely 214 pages and in that I read the word "goddamn" & "phony" at least 100 times. There were many such words and phrases repeated many times, the writer could have done very well using synonyms in that case which would have had the same effect if not better or at least it would have taken out the monotonous tone out of the book. Another thing which frustrated me was whatever Holden though or said he backed it up by adding the word "really" everytime. For ex:- I studied for 2 hours on Sunday. I really did. Now there was no need for all this. OK he did a certain thing or thought so but then why do need to stress that point so much?? And again the repetitive use of the word "really" agonized me. All these things almost made me quit the book at one point. But the portrait of the character was so good that it made you forget everything else. Once you got through the initial hurdle and started understanding who, why and how Holden really who start feeling for him and give him excuses as the book was written in Holden's own words. His reckless behaviour very well hid his actual sad and lost boy in the cruel and selfish world outside. He feels lonely and wandering in his own world/thoughts of a beautiful life which he could live according to his rules. According to everybody else he is supposed to be the most impractical person around. He doesn't want to do things which the world does, he only wants to do things which he really likes and enjoys doing. One thing he doesn't want to attend school or exams just to pass, infact he's a repeated failure but for him study means really learning something and applying it to real life. At first it might seem to many that he is afraid of school and exams but thats not the case. The thing is he doesn't want to allow the exam results or his teachers remarks to decide his fate in any way. This way is very well explained by the essay he writes on the Egyptians in his History Paper. The essay goes on like this:The Egyptians are extremely interesting to us today for various reasons. Modern science would still like to know what the secret ingredients were that the Egyptians used when they wrapped up dead people so that their faces would not rot for innumerable centuries. This interesting riddle is still quite a challenge to modern science in the twentieth century.and then he writes a note below the essay:DEAR MR. SPENCER [he read out loud]. That is all I know about the Egyptians. I can't seem to get very interested in them although your lectures are very interesting. It is all right with me if you flunk me though as I am flunking everything else except English anyway. Respectfully yours, HOLDEN CAULFIELDHe is also a very kind hearted and loving. He shows his love and affection for his sister. He loves children and their innocence and thats why he is an adolescent boy who fears his childhood coming to an end. This is the reason why he wants to be "The Catcher In The Rye", to save the children getting otu of their innocence. He even worries about the animals and sometimes doesn't shy away from asking people "What happens to the ducks in the pond in the winter season when the pond is frozen?" He is also a boy who loves to speak the truth and likes people who are that way. He hates movies because he feels movies are very phony and not genuine at all. Say an actor is acting a particular part but he might not be the same in real life so why does he do it?There are many such things and he makes a valid point in all of those. It might seem very impractical, childish stuff but it shows the yearning and shouting of a man who just like all of us is crumpled in the meanness of the modern world. The boy speaks the hard truth about today's life. He wants the world to be a better place. We all live and republic countries but are we really free. There are so many restrictions, prejudices we live under. Theory is what matters, not practicality. A university degree is enough for someone to make him a doctor even though he doesn't know how to operate bodies but someone who knows that and doesn't have a degree is not good enough to be a doctor.Finally I would conclude by saying (actually copying a bit from someone else's review) that The Catcher In The Rye is a book about a boy so afraid of growing up and so averse to giving into the pain and sadness that he sees as the result of becoming an adult that he wants nothing more than to spend his life protecting others from losing the innocence of childhood. Big, crazy, “I want to save the world” dreams are a wonderful part of childhood and it is a shame that such ideas and beliefs are too often destroyed under the barrage of “you really need to grow up” rather than having such dreams transitioned and re-focused into daring the improbable within the world of the possible. For me it is a MUST READ
The Draining Lake (Reykjavik Murder Mysteries 4) - Arnaldur Indridason I had read somewhere that Iceland has the highest ratio of number of books read per person than any other country in the world and also that every 1 of 10 Icelanders go on to become a writer or a poet. I seriously don't know whether that is true or not but it seriously itched me to read something from Iceland. I wondered despite of the low population in Iceland if there are so many writers and so many books read why haven't we seen any great write or great books emerging from the country. The problem I found out after reading this book was that they are indeed great writers but they are not known much and the reason for that is just like in other Nordic countries, people in Iceland as well write their literature in their native language. Hardly anything is there in English. Yes there are translators but a translation doesn't have the same effect. Its just like a piece of music which is made to be played on piano, it can be played on the guitar as well but it won't have the same effect.Anyways talking about the book, I was glad that I read it. It not only provided a good crime story but also gave a good insight into Iceland's and East Germany's past. How people were so naive in Iceland when they were ruled. How troubled life was in East German before Germany got unified. It was much of a historical fiction for me. A crime which happened in the past because of the troubles in the past and not intentionally done. I won't set this book as one of the best crime books I have come across but when you add the history to it, its a great read. Iceland is one of the least known countries in the world, it is overshadowed in every field by other Nordic countries. The book gave me good knowledge about Iceland's past.One thing I like when reading Scandinavian Crime Fiction (which I found in this book as well) when compared to English (American/British) Crime Fiction is that the Scandinavians are very professional in they way the move about it. Its not the sort which will hook you off your seat or run fast paced and thrill you just like in English Crime Fiction. No, it just won't do that and I like it because it doesn't feel real. The Scandinavians move about it makes you feel its real, the way the police would actually solve a crime in real life. My grandfather was a lawyer and he sometimes used to tell me stories about how cases in court moved along. I find the same with these Scandinavian crime fiction books. Thats why I like to read the as purely "Crime Fiction" and not as "Mystery/Thriller". When you read it as crime fiction you tend to enjoy it more. I find English Crime Fiction quite casual and nothing professional in comparison to Scandinavian one.
Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less - Jeffrey Archer Of all the Jeffrey Archer books I have read, I have liked this one the least. The reason is simply because this was not a typical Jeffrey Archer book. Jeffrey Archer in his own words loves to write simple novels, simple fiction for everybody to read and understand. It doesn't necessarily appeal to people of any particular age group, like or dislike. His books are there for everybody to read and enjoy. He has himself said that he doesn't like to write anything violent, sexual or even extravagant. Not meaning to say that this book was anything like that but it was simply uncharacteristic of Jeffrey Archer. What surprises me is that this was his first book so normally if you read this book first you would think that this is his base and he writes like this only. Thankfully I have read several of his books before this one and I've got to say that they were much much better than this. His works like [b:Kane and Abel|78983|Kane and Abel (Kane and Abel, #1)|Jeffrey Archer|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1312011887s/78983.jpg|1084150], [b:The Prodigal Daughter|78987|The Prodigal Daughter (Kane & Abel, #2)|Jeffrey Archer|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1316636554s/78987.jpg|1839081] and [b:As the Crow Flies|7201|As the Crow Flies|Jeffrey Archer|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1316129399s/7201.jpg|2630354] according to me are among the best literary fiction books of all time. Kane and Abel certainly will be for me one of the top 10 fiction books of all time. So judging by that standards I was rather disappointed with this book but still this book had its moments of excitement.
Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen, Anna Quindlen The review has taken quite a some time coming probably because I shy away from writing reviews of all time best sellers or historically most popular novels as this one was. As there is already so much written, studied and review by so many number of people that I don't feel like it to repeat the same things. But there are some books whom rating only do not suggest how good or bad they were because everybody makes ratings according to his/her interpretations. I personally do not like the GoodReads rating system. In such cases you are obliged to write a review about it and this book is one of them. If I had just left it rating it 4 or 5 or whatever stars I wanted to give it would have been quite unfair as the ratings just doesn't express my feelings towards the book. The GR rating system says 4 star means very much liked it, but thats just not all the case with this book for me.The book started with possibly one of the best starting lines ever. It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife. As soon as I read this I knew this book I going to love this book. The line and the book on a whole prove exactly why I am such a huge fan of classic literature. Its the simplicity of the language, simplicity of the characters, simplicity of the words exchanged and simplicity.... of everything there's in the book that I absolutely love. Its written in such a way that even the most violent of things sounds beautiful and pleasing to the mind. Its nothing like most of the modern day novels; erotic, extravagant, extreme, wild, uncharacteristic, ugly and aggressive, all these things which I absolutely detest. Today we live in a world where we do not have time even for ourselves and our family. In a world where we just care about worldly possessions such as success and wealth. This book made me feel go to the past, in the days when there were no trains or plains or buses or any motor vehicles but just carriages and time enough for walking short distances. In the days when there was no internet, no phone but time enough for exchanging letters. In the days when you could just relax of your work any time and go for a long holiday. In the days when stress was not how much you earn but what your neighbours thought about youIn the days when there was time enough to do everything in the world. It also took you to the ride in the days when you really cared for your siblings and not being jealous for them. To the days when friendship didn't just mean partying or going to the movies together, but actually helping your friend in need, sharing with them every right and wrong thing in your lives and seeking their true and honest opinion. When love was not just sex but understanding each other without expressing one's thoughts and keeping one another happy.Words are not enough to describe the beauty and wonder of classic literature and this book was one of the best of them all.First when I read this book I didn't thought it was that extra-ordinary. But the more I think about it the more I find that it was almost a flawless book. Yes I've tried hard to find a fault in this but I just couldn't. Its been almost a month since I've read this but its still fresh in my memory as if I've just read it yesterday night. It still pushes me to that timeless world which I know is not possible. I've not changed my rating from 4 stars despite of this because I very soon want to read this again and then I will think of giving it 5. I think its one of those books the more you read the more you will like it.Finally I want to say that nothing can be perfect in this world. So while writing this review I've actually stumbled upon a fault or you could say a thing which could have been better. That particular thing is the very title of the book. As some of you might know this book was first named 'First Impressions', I seriously think that title would have been better than Pride and Prejudice. Yes Elizabeth personified Prejudice and Darcy personified Pride but especially in Elizabeth's case it was Prejudice towards just one or two persons (Darcy & Wickman), the rest I found her character to be quite correct so I feel that it was her First Impression about Darcy & Wickman the way she thought of them and not her Prejudice.Still as William Shakespeare says "Whats there in a name" I would say the title didn't have much bearing on the legacy of the book.
The Shining - Stephen King My first Stephen King novel.What a complete waste....? What a complete waste of a brilliant plot and even more better setting for a horror novel.Even though I have not read many horror novels before I can say one thing for sure that the book started (The setting & the plot) as well as any horror novel could. A mystery hotel in the outskirts of a city which is totally covered with snow throughout the whole winter and traveling from part to the other is almost forbidden. For for 6 months the hotel has to be kept closed, but you need a caretaker for winter. Enter Jack Torrance as the winter caretaker with his wife Wendy and one kid Danny who has the "shine" in him, the power to foresee the future, know the past and also know the feelings of people around him. The regular chef Mr. Hallorann tells them especially Wendy about the kitchen and food items which would help them last the 6 months. As everybody else he leaves the hotel for the winter. The Manger Mr. Ullman gives Jack the grand tour of the hotel and he leaves the hotel as well leaving Jack Torrance and his family alone for the whole winter to take care of the hotel. Once the snow starts to fall the only way Jack can be in contact with his family is a radio which he eventually breaks in frustration one day.So this was the setting and the plot. Uptil this point the book had 5 stars written all over it. Uptil this point the book hooked me totally grasping me in it, not allowing me to put it down no matter how hard I felt asleep. Even though at this point there were a few pages which I didn't understood at all, still the book held me and I went on with the story. But then things just started to go downhill and unfortunately never improved until the very end. The horror part was what Mr. King didn't wrote well in this novel. Everything went on as predicted and the same things kept repeating like Danny entering the room 217 despite Mr. Hallorann telling him not to and getting frozed seeing a dead body in there. Danny then going to the playground as well again Mr. Hallorann had told him not to do so, and then seeing the topiary animals chasing after him. All these things were quite predictable. We knew that Mr. Hallorann had forbidden Danny to do a few things he would still be tempted to do them. What was worse that despite seeing such a horrified state of Danny, both Wendy and Jack were willing to leave him wander about in the hotel alone. I really wasn't shook and felt horror at any point in the book apart from the start 150 or so pages which really had just the setting and introduction.Another one of the things I didn't like was the constant flashbacks the characters. He stretched the book with some really inconsequential and irrelevant scenes. For ex:- Just as jack was climbing the stairs he remembered a incident when his father did so and so... and Mr. King would go on to describe that whole flashback incident which Jack felt which actually had no relevance at all to the main story. And this same thing Mr. King kept repeating with every character, time and again. And hardly any of those incidents or flashbacks had any bearing to the main story. It just took the zip of the main story as if you were reading two different stories in one book. And that was the main reason why in the mid part of the book you felt really boring. The conclusion would be I guess Mr. King himself or may be his editors didn't do a proper job and made a mess of a wonderful plot and a brilliant set up for a horror book. If this is what people say Stephen King's best horror book then I am sorry to say I don't plan him to read again any time soon. Though I have a copy of Misery which was recommended to me by my GR friend Dave who said that I would like it and that it should have been my first King novel. Maybe I should have just listened to him and bought Misery first before borrowing this book from the library.
They Call Me... Montey Greene - A. R. Yoba I got this novel through GoodReads Giveaways section. [a:A.R. Yoba|6437748|A.R. Yoba|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1342893393p2/6437748.jpg] was kind enough to send it in just a few days from US to me in India. I would like to thank him for that.Montey Greene is a relaxed paced novel. Even though its a thriller its not totally action packed and fast pace. This could be explainable because its just the first book of a Trilogy. And I think as far as being the first book is concerned it was quite a book, also it was the first book of the said author. First book of a series is generally an ok sort, I expect the following books to be better.The thing I liked most about this book was the lead character Montey Greene. I started to like him from the first chapter itself. He was a black African-American, a nigga who people didn't care much about. But he was himself, didn't worry about the people. He had a humorous side to him as well which was interesting. He had a particular liking towards women. Overall the character was quite enjoyable which is why I rated this book 4 or else it would have been a 3.The thing I didn't like about the book was its length & depth of the writing. I think it should have been bigger. At some points I thought the author lacked depth in describing scenarios. At some other points the author just rushed through with it, that parts could have been broadened. It was a good engaging novel and a few more pages and particularly depth would have just made it better. But since this is the debut book for the author I can excuse him for that, the following books of the series should be betterAs I mentioned above its a good engaging novel, but not extraordinary. The story revolves smoothly but without any depth. But its not boring as well. It won't take anyone of the hook but at the same time you won't be disappointed by it as well. Its a good book to be read on a afternoon when you are free from work or looking for a bit relaxation. This book would provide you that and it can be completed reading in a few hours.I am waiting for the second book to be released. I want to complete this whole series.


The Notebook - Nicholas Sparks Oh my, what a book this was. So short and so sweet and so emotional.First of all I want to tell to those who have not read this book that don't ever read it if you are not strong enough to face the hard truths of life. Also don't read it if you think that Twilight or Fifty Shades of Grey are very good romance novels because then you won't be able to understand the deepness of the meaning of love presented in this novel.The writing was so simple, after just reading a few pages I got involved in it fully and I knew from that moment onwards that I am gonna love this. And so it happened. This was the first book I read fully at a single go, I completed it within few hours. As sunday is a holiday and I like to read long on Saturday nights staying awake, so on saturday as is customary for me I usually go for a mystery/thriller/crime sort of novel. But since the thriller I had chose for this weekend was not that long so I decided to read this book, complete it and then go for the other. But after reading this book I was so overwhelmed by it, I just couldn't think about anything else let alone reading anything else. I still don't have words to describe how good this was, the only complaint I have is that it was too short, not only was I sad that it ended so soon but I would have loved to read it on and on and on...