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Athena's Reading List 2017

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11 hours ago, Inver said:

...and no doubt you have a wishlist for Christmas pressies....:giggle:

 

We don't give gifts for Christmas in my family but I would if we did :). I always want more books :blush:.

 

7 hours ago, Little Pixie said:

Great pics ! :)

 

Thanks :)!

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I read V. E. Schwab - Shades of Magic 3: A Conjuring of Light. I don't feel in the mood to write a long review right now, so this will be short. I really liked this conclusion to the trilogy. It was really good and I stayed up late to finish it. I didn't feel as emotional as some people whose reviews I read, but I thought the book was very good even if I didn't cry. I really liked it!

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I read John Green - Turtles All the Way Down, his newest book (which my dad bought for me in India :)). This book is about a teenage girl named Aza, who has OCD and anxiety (I think, a diagnosis is not given in the book), and there is a sort of mystery running through the book too. I really liked this book. I will say it can be triggering, the book taught me some facts that I think I won't soon forget, so keep that in mind if you're sensitive to certain issues. I found it really interesting to read from Aza's point of view, including her thought spirals. I liked the story, the characters, the writing style and the plot twists and ending. There have been people who said they didn't feel Aza seemed like a teenager, in terms of what she thinks and words she uses (and these people liked the book less than I did). Now I don't know if that's true or not, I myself as a teenager was very different from other teenagers, and personally Aza's word use, for example, didn't bother me at all (after all, I'm someone who uses fancy/difficult words, even when I was a kid). 

 

Overall I really enjoyed reading Turtles All the Way Down.

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I've not really felt in the mood lately to write long(er) book reviews (and my tiredness probably doesn't help with that). Though the above turned out longer than I thought it would.

 

Has anyone else ever not felt in the mood to write book reviews?

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Glad to see you enjoyed your last couple of reads Athena :) I saw Turtles All the Way Down in shop recently and thought the title was brilliant, although I didn't know what it was about, it sounds interesting! 

 

Your other new books look great too. Is Myst related to the game?

 

I do sometimes just not feel like writing book reviews, usually when I've been busy and just don't feel like I'm paying attention to what I'm writing. I actually have a few to catch up on now!

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6 hours ago, Athena said:

I've not really felt in the mood lately to write long(er) book reviews (and my tiredness probably doesn't help with that). Though the above turned out longer than I thought it would.

 

Has anyone else ever not felt in the mood to write book reviews?

 

I very often don't feel in the mood to write a review. Some books also need to settle in my mind a bit. It does help me to keep a general structure in mind - I always try to say something about the writing style/fluency, the characters, the plot and whether or not I'd recommend it to others. I also try not to get more than one book behind on reviews, because if I leave it too long I don't remember enough to write about it decently. Some books are also easier to review than others.

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23 hours ago, Hayley said:

Glad to see you enjoyed your last couple of reads Athena :) I saw Turtles All the Way Down in shop recently and thought the title was brilliant, although I didn't know what it was about, it sounds interesting! 

 

Your other new books look great too. Is Myst related to the game?

 

Thanks :). It is, it's based on the game. There are more books in the series according to GoodReads. I didn't know about it but my sister saw it at a shop and she remembered the two of us playing it when we were younger, so she bought it for me as a birthday present :).

 

23 hours ago, Hayley said:

I do sometimes just not feel like writing book reviews, usually when I've been busy and just don't feel like I'm paying attention to what I'm writing. I actually have a few to catch up on now!

 

Good luck catching up :).

 

22 hours ago, Alexander the Great said:

I very often don't feel in the mood to write a review. Some books also need to settle in my mind a bit. It does help me to keep a general structure in mind - I always try to say something about the writing style/fluency, the characters, the plot and whether or not I'd recommend it to others. I also try not to get more than one book behind on reviews, because if I leave it too long I don't remember enough to write about it decently. Some books are also easier to review than others.

 

I always like reading your reviews! I try to get not too behind either, usually no more than a few days' worth of reading. Usually I post a review of a book before I start the next one, unless I'm reading several books in a series or something like that, or if I'm reading more than one book in a day.

 

I agree, if I wait too long I don't remember much anymore either. There is one book I've been reading that has chapters in it from January - December, it's kind of a self help book / memoir by Gretchen Rubin, and I've been reading a chapter when it was that month, but I have to say now that I'm almost at the end of the year and at the end of the book, I cannot remember what I thought of  most of the earlier chapters (other than the one that irked me lol), so I don't think it's something I'll be doing again. I do prefer to just read a book and not read a bit of it each month.

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23 hours ago, Athena said:

 

Thanks :). It is, it's based on the game. There are more books in the series according to GoodReads. I didn't know about it but my sister saw it at a shop and she remembered the two of us playing it when we were younger, so she bought it for me as a birthday present :).

 

Aww that's so nice! I played Myst a really long time ago but I remember enjoying it, I look forward to seeing what you think of the book! :) 

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20 hours ago, Hayley said:

Aww that's so nice! I played Myst a really long time ago but I remember enjoying it, I look forward to seeing what you think of the book! :) 

 

Thanks :). I also can't remember a lot about the game, but I too remember enjoying it :).

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Recent reading experiences:

 

I re-read Geronimo Stilton - Fantasia I: Fantasia (Nel Regno della Fantasia). This was the first Stilton book I ever read, and because of that it has a special place in my heart. Looking back, I can definitely say it was a great but not the best Stilton book I've now read, looking at it more objectively. But it was very good and I enjoyed feeling nostalgic. I also really liked the illustrations. The first Fantasia is a bit different from the later ones, it was interesting to re-read the first one and see where that series started and what it turned into, if that makes sense.

 

Then I read some graphic novels, the first of which was Noelle Stevenson - Nimona. I had heard/read some good reviews of this graphic novel so I bought it a while ago based on those reviews. I was still surprised though by how good the book was. I really liked this! On occasion the text was a bit hard to read, though I did like the handwritten feeling. I liked the artstyle of the pictures too. I loved the humour of the story and it took some turns I wasn't expecting, based on just reading the synopsis. I liked this graphic novel a lot.

 

Then I read Bryan Lee O'Malley - Lost at Sea. For some reason I had a completely different idea from what this book would be like. For some reason, the cover reminded me of a moon landscape so I thought it was about a ghost girl on the moon, but it so was not lol (it was about a girl who was on a road trip across the US with a couple of people she knew). Of course, I should've just read the synopsis before reading it :P. I did read it when I bought it, but not recently before reading it. Anyway, I thought the story was cute and nice (I like the cats!!) but I was a bit disappointed by it, even though that's completely my own fault.

 

Then I read an autobiographical graphic memoir: Shannon Hale, LeUYEN Pham and Jane Poole - Real Friends. This is a memoir about Shannon's time at school and her friendships. I liked the artstyle and I liked the story, it was enjoyable and also a bit emotional. I thought it was quite good.

 

Next I read two graphic novels that took place also in middle school, but were fictional: Svetlana Chmakova - Awkward 1: Awkward and Svetlana Chmakova - Awkward 2: Brave. I bought these because Amazon recommended them to me (and later on my GoodReads it turned out one of the people I follow liked the first book too). I quite liked these two graphic novels. I read on the author's website there will be a third one, so that's exciting. The stories can be read separate from one another by the way, they are about different characters, but they do take place after one another, so it is best to read them in order if you want to read both, but if you don't, you could read each on its own. I thought the art style was nice and I enjoyed these two graphic novels. The illustrations featured a lot of pastel colours which was nice.

 

After that, I read a sort of paranormal graphic novel (or however you want to call a graphic novel that adds a ghost element): Vera Brosgol - Anya's Ghost. This artstyle was nice and I quite liked the story. It's about a teenage girl and a ghost. I quite liked this one.

 

Lastly I read Gene Luen Yang and Lark Pien - American Born Chinese. This graphic novel starts off with three separate stories that tie in together. I thought that was done rather well. I am confused by the ending though, which is a shame, I didn't really like the ending. I also found it hard to follow one character's lines, sometimes they were written more phonetically and I found them sometimes difficult to figure out. I did like the rest of the graphic novel and I thought the artstyle wasn't that special but I did like its use of bright colours.

 

Whew, that's it for now!

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I like reading about your experiences with graphic novels. I only own one, Penny Dreadful, but haven't started it yet. I talked about this with my sister recently - how neither of us are drawn to them and how we both read 'regular' books much more easily than a graphic novel. Is there any strategy to reading graphic novels we might not have mastered?

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On 11/19/2017 at 2:42 AM, Little Pixie said:

I really liked Shannon Hale' s Austenland. :D the graphic novel sounds good. :)

 

That sounds nice, I'll have to look that one up :D.

 

On 11/19/2017 at 11:01 AM, Alexander the Great said:

I like reading about your experiences with graphic novels. I only own one, Penny Dreadful, but haven't started it yet. I talked about this with my sister recently - how neither of us are drawn to them and how we both read 'regular' books much more easily than a graphic novel. Is there any strategy to reading graphic novels we might not have mastered?

 

I actually used to find it easier as well to read 'regular' books, and was usually drawn more towards regular books, than graphic novels or books with lots of illustrations. I've only really been reading graphic novels during the past few years. I did read Donald Duck when I was a kid and I also read some of my boyfriend's manga some years ago. I'm not sure why I've been reading more graphic novels and manga during the past few years, compared with before. I always used to consider them quite expensive compared with how long it took me to read them. I kind of got more into graphic novels when I found some for cheaper prices (ie. at the book fair I often go to), and I also got some recommendations from other people. I decided to just order a few online, even if they cost a lot compared with 'regular' books, just to see how I would get on. And I did quite enjoy reading them. It's a different way of telling a story. I believe some of the ones I started with, where graphic novels that were based on 'regular' novels (that I really liked), I found that an easy starting place.

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The past few days I've been reading  Loes den Hollander - Broeinest. I quite enjoyed reading this literary thriller. It was perhaps not as 'thrilling' / scary as thrillers which are not literary thrillers, but it was a literary thriller and it said so on the cover, so it did not bother me. It was kind of more deep than a regular thriller? There were more messages in the story and the relationships between the characters and their shared past was very important to the story. More important than the tension about murder and stuff. I don't know if countries besides the Netherlands have literary thrillers and that their books say this so prominently on the cover. It seems a thing here. I find it helpful (if accurate of course). Anyway, I quite liked reading this book. I found the story and the characters interesting. I enjoyed gradually finding out more about the past of the characters and their secrets. It was just what I was in the mood for.

 

Then I read some short children's books I recently purchased from my library (and one from the charity shop).

 

Mirjam Mous (ill. Marja Meijer) - Alle Dagen Hardstikke Druk
This is a book about a boy with ADHD. I quite liked this book. Since I have ADD, I could relate to Indy's concentration problems. I liked the way the author had described them and how she had written down Indy's thought patterns. It was relatable to me. I could not fully relate to Indy's hyperactive-ness (since I'm not hyperactive), but I found it interesting to read about. The book was humourous in places and I liked that. The illustrations were nice too.

 

Carry Slee and Dagmar Stam - De Kinderen van de Grote Beer 3: Opgepast, ik lust een hele boekenkast!
Okay, I admit, part of the reason I bought this book was because the word 'boekenkast' (bookshelf/bookcase) was in the title. The other part is that I really like Carry Slee's writing and Dagmar Stam's illustrations. I was a little bit disappointed books didn't feature more prominently in this book, but I quite enjoyed the story otherwise and even giggled a few times. I also felt nostalgic, as this story is about children who go to 'groep 3' (the 'third' grade?), and I could relate to the changes since 'groep 2' in the previous year, as I've gone through that myself when I was a kid.

 

Mirjam Mous (ill. Marja Meijer) - Toontje Prins
This was a cute fantasy-ish story about a prince, which unexpectedly featured fairy tale characters which was nice. I liked the story, though it's not a book that will stay with me as much as, for example, the book above by the same author about the boy with ADHD.

 

Marianne Busser and Ron Schröder (ill. Dagmar Stam) - De Griezeltjes
This was humourous and I liked the illustrations.

 

Paul van Loon (ill. Juliette de Wit) - Lees!: Stuurloos tussen de sterren
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I've read a lot of horror books by this author, but this book was set in a science-fiction setting, rather than a contemporary-ish or fantasy-ish setting. I liked the story.

 

Paul van Loon (ill. Camila Fialkowski) - Spetter: Pas op voor een pad!
I didn't like this one as much as the one above. It was still nice but it was more predictable and less tension, to me.

 

Hans Petermeijer (ill. Mark Janssen) - Zoeklicht Geheim: Big vermist
This story takes place in World War II, and I felt for the main character. It must have been so scary to live in those times. I liked the book but it wasn't as good as some of the other books in this list of books I've read recently. I also felt the title was a little bit misplaced. Yes, it does happen in the story, but it wasn't as big a part of the story as I was expecting (pun unintended lol, two meanings of 'Big' in two languages).

 

This marks my having read 200 books this year! Yay!
I'm kind of hoping to get to 50,000 pages, before 2017 ends, I've read 45331 so far. That's part of the reason of why I've been reading the graphic novels and now short children's books. I don't know if I'll get to 50,000 pages before the end of the year though, and I don't want to pressure myself too much and I do want to read what I feel like reading. We'll see what happens.

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Wow, congrats on getting to 200 books ! That's brilliant ! :)

 

I'm hovering around 110 ; a string of migraines and feeling wuff ( rough ;) ) affected my reading, though I'm still pleased to break 100 . 

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Wow, those numbers are impressive.  Maybe come January I'll start keeping track. In the mean time:

 

Well done, both of you!

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1 minute ago, Litwitlou said:

 

 

Wow, those numbers are impressive.  Maybe come January I'll start keeping track. In the mean time:

 

Well done, both of you!

 

Aw, thank you. :)

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21 hours ago, ~Andrea~ said:

I really like the sound of Turtles all the Way Down. I'm going to add it to my wish list!

 

I hope you enjoy it if / when you read it :)!

 

10 hours ago, Little Pixie said:

Wow, congrats on getting to 200 books ! That's brilliant ! :)

 

I'm hovering around 110 ; a string of migraines and feeling wuff ( rough ;) ) affected my reading, though I'm still pleased to break 100 . 

 

Thanks :)! Well done on breaking 100 :D! I hope you feel better soon  :flowers2:.

 

10 hours ago, Litwitlou said:

Wow, those numbers are impressive.  Maybe come January I'll start keeping track. In the mean time:

 

Well done, both of you!

 

Thank you :)!

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Books I've read recently:

 

Mirjam Mous (ill. Marja Meijer) - Vigo Vampier 1: Een bloedlink partijtje
Mirjam Mous (ill. Marja Meijer) - Vigo Vampier 2: Een bloeddorstige meester
Mirjam Mous (ill. Marja Meijer) - Vigo Vampier 3: De bloedneusbende
There is a fourth book in this series but I don't own it. The stories stand on their own, though I would like to read the fourth book (and own it) some time. Anyway, I enjoyed reading these three books. They're about a kid vampire, who's afraid of blood. The first book is about a sleepover, the second about a mysterious new teacher and the third about mysterious things going on in the circus.

 

I then read two graphic novels. First I read Cece Bell (colouring David Lasky) - El Deafo. This is a graphic novel memoir based on the author's life of growing up deaf. I bought it because some people online recommended it. I thought it was thought provoking and very interesting. It showed how other children and people would sometimes respond to Cece and how she tries to fit in. Everyone is drawn as a rabbit which I thought was a nice touch. I really liked this.

 

Then I read Debbie Tung - Quiet Girl in a Noisy World, which I bought because a blogger recommended it. This is a collection of autobiographical comics about a girl who's an introvert. Although I personally need more time to recover after social interaction than she did, I found the book very relatable. My boyfriend is an introvert, whereas hers is an extrovert, but I really related to things like her preferring some nice quiet time with a book on the couch as opposed to going to a party. The illustrations were pretty nice. I liked this one a lot.

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Those sound like interesting graphic novels!

 

It would be nice to reach 50,000 pages, but crossing 45,000 pages is already a very nice number! Congratulations on the 200 books :) 

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14 hours ago, Alexander the Great said:

Those sound like interesting graphic novels!

 

They were pretty interesting :).

 

14 hours ago, Alexander the Great said:

It would be nice to reach 50,000 pages, but crossing 45,000 pages is already a very nice number! Congratulations on the 200 books :) 

 

Thanks, Alexander :)!

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