Thursday, September 11, 2014

Travel Reading Part 6

For the last three months, I've been gone, walking across Canada with a group called Crossroads Pro-Life. I was very, very busy, but I did manage to read a few books. Blogging about them was a different story, however. So it's been so long now since I read many of them, that I thought I could do travel posts like I did last summer, and just write a couple sentences for each book.
So here goes the second Crossroads multi-review post:

"Rome Sweet Home" by Scott and Kimberly Hahn
Grade: 4 stars
For me, being a Catholic who grew up on Scott Hahn and Protestant conversion stories, there was nothing very new in this book. Still, it was well written, and it was interesting to read something that was so personal. It showed the same story from both Scott's and Kimberly's point of view, which sometimes I found slightly repetitive and sometimes I found fascinating.

"Sword Art Online 1: Aincrad" by Reki Kawahara
Grade: 2 1/2 stars
This is a Japanese light novel, and thus is (surprise, surprise) rather on the light side. Apparently there are a number of sides stories that used to be included online, and are also in the anime. I think those scenes would have filled this out a little more and made it more enjoyable. I generally have a rule that if a manga came before an anime, I have to read it before watching it. I do not have the same rule with light novels, and this is partly why. The anime has more depth and more story. (I think in the future I will try to watch the animes first, and if I really enjoy it, will read the light novels to get a different perspective on the characters.) But there was some cool stuff in here. Interesting ideas about living a video game.

"The Icebound Land" by John Flanagan
Grade: 2 1/2 stars
Third book in the Ranger's Apprentice series, after The Ruins of Gorlan and The Burning Bridge. I found this one slightly slower than the first two, but it may have been my mood at the time. And there was an awesome section with Horace, which I was very happy to see. Hopefully he continues to grow more and more awesome.

"The Last Guardian of Everness" by John C. Wright
Grade: 4 stars
A fantasy novel with a dream world, many mythological references, a rising and terrible evil, betrayal and disguise and mistaken identities. The imagery was fantastic, and was definitely my favourite part. But I liked almost the whole cast of characters, who were mostly interestingly nuanced. As a note, because I like to keep track of these things, my favourite character was Peter, although Azrael was quite fascinating too (the part where he rides home with a certain character was hilarious).

"Mists of Everness" by John C. Wright
Grade: 3 1/2 stars
Technically I finished this after my summer travelling, but it's the sequel to The Last Guardian of Everness, so I thought I'd stick in in the same post. These two books were basically two halves of the same story, not a book and its sequel (sort of like the three LotR books are really just one book). However, I didn't actually like this one quite as much as the first. It seemed a little more disjointed, plot-wise, than the first. It was still very enjoyable, however. I loved when the characters all got their particular weapons and were using them like bosses. Also, John C. Wright is Catholic, and I could see some themes that resonated with me because of this. I'm definitely going to try out more of his books (especially his scifi, which is what he's most known for).

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