Monday, September 29, 2008

Archer's Goon

by Diana Wynne Jones

Grade: To Own

At this rate of "To Own"s, I'm going to own a million more books soon.

Excellent book. Centers around two families, and I adore families. The magic family had the most delicious names. I liked that some turned out good and some turned out bad.

I was quite surprised by some of the twists, actually. Especially the Goon twist. The Venturus twist I got just a couple pages before I was told.

The Goon talks like Freddy!! For that reason, I liked him a lot. I liked Torquil too.

The Game

by Diana Wynne Jones

Grade: To Own

A lovely little book. About Greek gods, which I happen to be interested in right now. (Actually, Roman gods, but it's close enough.) The picture on the front is cool, and it's small and hardcover. I loved Flute and Fiddle. And I liked how ordinary it seemed at first, and then you found out that it was unordinary the whole time. However, it did get kind of confusing sometimes near the end.

Mixed Magics

by Diana Wynne Jones

Grade: Good

Beware! This is my Diana Wynne Jones week! About a million and one Diana Wynne Jones books coming up!

Good little set of short stories. It was nice to see Cat with Chrestomanci again. I really do like Chrestomanci. I think "Carol Oneir's Hundredth Dream" was my favourite, even if I didn't quite understand it.

The Young Visiters

by Daisy Ashford

Grade: To Own

It's such a nice little book. And the movie had Hugh Laurie in it.

Here's the funniest passage in the whole thing:
"The Earl soon got tired of his sickly daughters and his wife had a savage temper so he thourght he would divorce her and try again but he gave up the idear after several attempts and decided to offer it up as a Mortification."

Also, just after Bernard and Ethel went on a merry six week honeymoon,
"[They] returned from their Honymoon with a son and hair a nice fat baby called Ignatius Bernard."

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Genius Squad

by Catherine Jinks

Grade: To Re-read.

The Canadian cop, Saul, was almost really cool, and I'd like to re-read some parts with him. Fiona you only saw from Cadel's point of view, or else I think I would have liked her more. Cadel is always cool. One reviewer said that it suffered a bit from lack of villains, and I agree, but it didn't suffer too much. Prosper is a great villain, and a menacing shadow throughout the book. Yet, he's given humanity, which really adds to it. He'd go on my Top Ten or So Greatest Villains list if there was a movie of Evil Genius.
Still a great series, and I'm dying for the sequal.

The God Beneath the Sea

by Leon Garfield and Edward Blishen

Grade: Good

I really like the gods, for the same reason that I like superheroes, I think. Hermes was the best in this one, with his "sideways smile", and his son Autolycus, grandfather of Odysseus. Hades was cool in his love for Persephone, but no Hades could beat the Hades in The Lightning Thief.
Unfortunately, the gods are very sensual. Good because they have lots of cool kids, bad because...well, you know.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Witch Week

by Diana Wynne Jones

Grade: Good

Much better than the last one I attempted. Or maybe I was just too full of Diana Wynne Jones when I tried the last one.
The characters were cool, Chrestomanci was AWESOME, it was engrossing all the way through, and--as usual--the magic was well done and really cool.
I didn't quite like the end though...not quite tied up enough. I wanted to know what happened to the characters more. Like what Charles's talent was.

Raven Rise

by D. J. MacHale

Grade: Good

It was a bit strange not having Bobby for the first third or so of the book. I never loved Bobby's parts at first though, so I didn't miss it too much. It just made it seem a bit uneven somehow. Also there were no new worlds to find out about, which I think I actually missed a bit, despite the fact that I often find that part boring.
I don't know how MacHale is going to tie everything up. There's still so much that's a mystery. It's a bit like Lost in some ways.
I really hope Mark and Courtney come back. They're my favourite characters by far.

Monday, September 15, 2008


by Eoin Colfer

Grade: To Re-read

The parts with the French guy, at least! I liked him. Victor Vigny was awesome: his hair stuck up; he knew karate, fencing, tai chi, and lots of science--and then he died.

The story was a fantastic adventure story reminiscent of The Count of Monte Christo. It fits admirably the quote: "Fencing. Fighting. Fire. Torture. Revenge. Knights. Nuns. Chases. Escapes. Rescues. True love. Miracles." But without the nuns.

Jolly good fun. I had at least a liking for almost all of the characters except the villain. He wasn't very interesting. But the aformentioned French guy, the blind, American musician, and the loyal, giant assassin were all pretty cool.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Little Brother

by Cory Doctorow

Grade: Good

Almost, almost "All right". In fact, it was a bit close to being "Unfinished". But the computer stuff saved it. It was awesome!! All the computer stuff!! I wanna take computer science!! And I'm scared half to death that I'll be horrible at it.

What made it almost "All right" was the horrible school-ish culture: scenes I had to skip, jabs at anti-evolutionists and anti-global warming-ists. It reminded me of sometimes of the awesome passion you get in Catholicism, but more...sneering.

Phrase to look up: esprit d'escalier.

Black Jack

by Leon Garfield

Grade: Good

I actually didn't mind the romance in this one. I was amazed. I think I almost liked it because it was so unusual--the heroine was mad. As in actually mentally insane.

Second most likeable thing was the Black Jack--Tolly relationship. (I like how Tolly's name for himself for Black Jack stuck all the way through.) That's the kind of relationship that makes me adore books. If I liked Tolly a little bit more...and if I quite liked the Tolly--Belle stuff (instead of almost liking)...then this might have become a favourite.

Third: his writing style. Every once in a while, there would pop up this quirky, unexpected little phrase. I liked this one:

"Although she was firm and sometimes harsh, although she was apt to bully and shout, and to have favorites and enemies among her frantic charges, it was strongly suspected she'd a heart of gold. Or of some metal very like it."

The last sentance puts a whole new spin on the "heart of gold" phrase, and you get a glimpse of her true nature.