Monday, January 24, 2011


by Catherine Fisher

Grade: Good
Story: ... um... well... not quite sure where to start, actually. There are a lot of characters and mythology stuff and a living prison.


I'm a bit ... confuzzled. I don't know what I think exactly. Fisher is obviously a brilliant writer. I think her prose is superb. All the Sapphique stuff is awesome. It's just a bit confusing. Make that a lot confusing.

And I was so happy with the lack of romance in Incarceron. But I think it was a lot because there seemed to be just hints of it between Claudia and Jared. That definitely continued in Sapphique. But then the ending...

Which brings me to my main point. On the one hand...
I love how real she makes it. In reality, Claudia would probably marry Finn in the end, because it was necessary for the kingdom. In reality, would Keiro turn out to have a lovely movie-moment where he throws away all his wickedness? Probably not. In reality, your "hero moments" are tiny things that nobody notices. And Keiro had some of those. Just nobody (including the readers) really noticed them. And in reality, you don't have most of your questions answered. Things happen, and you never know why. I'm kind of glad we never found out if Finn was Giles or not.

On the other hand...
Claudia and Finn??? Noooo!!! I loved Jared way more, and so did Claudia obviously, and I don't even understand properly what happened to him. And I don't get all the Sapphique stuff, and is that real magic that Rix is doing? Blah!!! I want to know!!! And Catherine Fisher is rotten  at giving information away in her FAQ on her website. Pretty much as bad as LOST was.

But on the other hand...
Keiro? Attia? Jared? Claudia? Even the Queen? And the Warden? And Incarceron!!!!! What a set of characters. They are all awesome, really awesome. The evil ones all have some good, and the good some evil. Except maybe Jared. I don't think there was any evil there at all. But he was still awesome, so that's ok. The only character that I didn't really get drawn to was Finn. Out of the whole set. In fact, it reminded me greatly of Joss Whedon in that respect. The only two authors it seems who can do that to me. Oh, and J. K. Rowling! That makes three! I don't like the main hero (Mal, Finn, Harry, etc. NOT Buffy, though. I love her. (And ok, ok. I liked Mal. It's just that all I really liked about him was his hilarious comments. Which was the writers' faults, and not his.)), but all the secondary characters are some of my favourite characters in my reading/watching history. All together in a big bunch.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Inside Out

by Maria V. Snyder

Grade: Good
Story: Trella is a worker who lives in a big box thing. She starts a revolution accidentally, against the Uppers (who live--guess where?--in the upper part of the big box thing).

It's a bit like a mix between The Hunger Games and Incarceron. But not quite as good as either. Not as utterly gripping as Hunger Games, and not as cool as Incarceron. But still good. I loved how little things were explained at first--we just got plopped right into the whole thing. However, there were a couple times things were explained when I wish they weren't. Like when Trella mentioned how old she was in years. There's absolutely no reason for her to use the old-fashioned terminology except for our sakes. It would be a bit like me saying, "Year 2010, or 1998 by the Julian calendar." (It wouldn't be 1998, but you know what I mean.) Also the time when she said that Cogon was like a brother to her--but even if she had learnt what a brother was from Riley, she still wouldn't understand the concept of family enough to explain it that way, I think.

Speaking of Riley, he reminded me a tiny bit of ... well, Riley. From Buffy. i.e. Handsome all that, but a bit boring. Thankfully there wasn't a lot of Romance stuff.

I'll read the next one, I guess, but not wait in eager anticipation, counting down the months or anything.

P.S. Oh, and another heroine who doesn't want to have kids because she doesn't want to bring another person into this horrible world? Yeah... I'm getting a bit tired of that. Thankfully there did seem to be some hint that she might change her mind about that. I forget where, and maybe I misread it.
Also the contraceptive stuff. Sigh. I still have to get used to the fact that the whole world thinks it's marvellous and wonderful.

Friday, January 21, 2011

The Exiles in Love

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: They all fall in love, and a French boy comes to visit.
Previous books in the series: The Exiles and The Exiles at Home.

This might be my favourite one yet. Rachel is still my favourite character (and NO, it isn't because of her name). I'm very glad she (spoiler, visit to decode) zneevrq Cuvyyvcr va gur raq.

And I loved everyone else, and it was all great!
I'm rather sad that there are no more books by her in the two series I just finished. I don't really feel like reading stand alone books.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Exiles at Home

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: The girls have to find ingenious ways to get money so they can pay for the schooling of an African boy. And other random stuff happens.
Previous book in the series: The Exiles.
Next book in the series: The Exiles in Love.

She's lovely. So easy to read, and so amusing. The "Story" section might seem boring here, but really, it isn't. These books are just totally not about the plot.

I think Rachel is my favourite of the girls. She eccentric in a bit of a different way than McKay's girls are usually eccentric. However, it feels a bit weird to say anything general about "McKay's girls", because they really are quite themselves and no one else.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Winter's Child

by Cameron Dokey

Grade: All right
Story: The Snow Queen.

Well, I got through this one. I liked the Winter Child, kind of. But...meh...

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The World Above

by Cameron Dokey

Grade: Unfinished
Read: To page 95 (about half-way).


Definitely Cameron Dokey. Her books are all quite similar. She actually reminds me a lot of Georgette Heyer. Both have a very distinctive style. Both have books I LOVE. Both have the majority of books causing a "meh". But I keep reading in case I find another of those fantastic ones.

The main problem with this one, as with the Heyers that I don't like, is that I didn't connect with a single character. I'm not sure why, though.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Forever Rose

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: Rose is Awesome, Caddy has Buttercup, Indigo doesn't do much, and Saffy does some stuff, I think, but I forget what.
Previous books in the series: Saffy's AngelIndigo's StarPermanent Rose, and Caddy Ever After.

Good finish. Love Rose. Wish David had been in the series more, but his parts were still good. Ditto with Indigo. (Although I quite like the Sarah thing.) And I'm so glad Caddy did end up with Michael, and Buttercup is hilarious.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Caddy Ever After

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: Caddy gets engaged again, Indigo likes Sarah, Rose is Rose and is wonderful, Saffy is having difficulty with Sarah's illness.
Previous books in the series: Saffy's Angel, Indigo's Star, and Permanent Rose.
Next book in the series: Forever Rose.

I was surprised by how little Caddy was in it, considering the title. I think Rose's first part is supposed to be slowly leading up to Indigo's part, which leads to Saffy's part, and then Caddy's part. So I guess the whole purpose is to lead to Caddy's part, but she's still in it a surprisingly little amount.

Spoiler: I was very glad that Caddy didn't end up marrying Alex. Maybe she'll still end up with Michael? I hope so.

Ok, on to the last one!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Permanent Rose

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: Permanent Rose misses her friend, Saffy and Sarah search for Saffy's father, Caddy is having second thoughts about marriage, and Indigo plays the guitar.
Previous books in the series: Saffy's Angel and Indigo's Star.
Next books in the series: Caddy Ever After and Forever Rose.

Perhaps my favourite in the series so far. Rose really is an awesome character. And I quite liked the addition of David into the family. I never loved Tom (although I wouldn't mind terribly if he came back). And although I thought I'd be terribly disappointed if Michael didn't marry Caddy, I think I don't mind as much as I thought I would. I do feel terribly for him, though. Poor guy. I did slightly mind the lack of Indigo. He's sweet--I think rather phlegmatic, which I suppose explains the lack of him.

Anyway, on the the sequels!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Indigo's Star

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: Indigo gets bullied at school, and meets an American friend named Tom. Rose hates her dad. Caddy has lots of boyfriends. Saffy is still friends with Sarah.
Previous book in the series: Saffy's Angel.
Next books in the series: Permanent RoseCaddy Ever After, and Forever Rose.

Still looking forward to the sequels. Not much else to say. These aren't very plot-filled books, so it's just the rather eccentric and endearing family doing things.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Saffy's Angel

by Hilary McKay

Grade: Good
Story: There are a bunch of children. One of them is searching for her dead grandfather's present. The rest are painting, or conquering their fears, or taking driving lessons.
Next books in the series: Indigo's Star, Permanent RoseCaddy Ever After, and Forever Rose.

I liked it better than the Exiles one. I think because the children were older. So I'm off to the library to get all the sequels.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Exiles

by Hilary McKay

Grade: All right
Story: Four sisters stay at their grandmothers and learn to do without reading.
Next books in the series: The Exiles at Home and The Exiles in Love.

Good, but a bit young for me. I'd like to read the sequels though, and it was amusing enough to get through. I loved Big Grandma.