Showing posts with label the host. Show all posts
Showing posts with label the host. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

[Recommendation] The 5th Wave (#1) - Rick Yancey

 In THE 5th WAVE, aliens are invading the earth. In four surges they have already murdered the majority of the earth's population.

Teenager Cassie is one of the sole survivors, preparing for the fifth surge of the alien invasion.

I'm not sure what happened here and how it happened but this is definitely my favorite read of the year. And it's November, so that says a lot. This was my first audio book in a long time, and I'm very, very happy I chose this one.

Prose to die for

Yancey manages to write the most relatable teen girl protagonist I have encountered in YA so far. Cassie's voice is just essentially teen, her thoughts, her feelings. I can't imagine how a fifty year old man managed to pull that off. I'm honestly truly, truly impressed.
I especially enjoyed the first chapter, which is essentially a monologue, but with a truckload of depth. Cassie's feelings about the invasion are described so powerfully and so movingly that I couldn't even do anything else while I listened to the audio book. I was absolutely sucked into this strange world.

Usually I groan when authors don't jump right into the story, but Yancey is inexplicably talented at info-dumping the heck out of the reader and still leave you yearning for more. The premise, the alien invasion, is just executed masterfully. Yancey doesn't give much information about it in the first place, but sprinkles the info-dumps all over the first chapters, so you find yourself yelling at the audio book narrator to hurry up / frantically turning the pages (whichever format you prefer).

There's only one cliché in this book. And it's my pet peeve...

The only things I didn't like as much about the book relate to the (of course we have one) love triangle. I really don't like them. I'm sorry.
Yancey made it a little more bearable by setting the whole thing up from the start. Cassie's infatuation with this boy Ben from her school is mentioned very early in and I understand and it does make sense, but love triangles are just a red flag for me. I'm sorry, other authors ruined this for me.

It just doesn't seem realistic for Cassie's super crush to have survived all of this, when a huge portion of humanity died. I'm surprised that Yancey went for this, because he's so realistic in his writing everywhere else. The invasion isn't sugarcoated, it's just WAR. Blunt, ruthless war without compromises. There are more plot twists that I can count, but then Yancey goes for the most persistent and arguably annoying cliché in dystopian YA: the love triangle between the MC, the crush/ old friend, and the rebel. Man. But seriously, this is the only thing I don't like about this book.


On audio narration:
I listened to the German audio book from Der Hörverlag Audible, which is narrated by Merete Brettschneider, Achim Buch, and Philipp Baltus as the protagonist Cassie and her love interests respectively.  Because I loved the book so much, it wasn't a smart choice to listen to the audio book - the narration speed is much slower than my own reading speed. Mainly because I'm an insanely fast reader when I love a book. Brettschneider uses pauses frequently for emphasis, which does work in terms of narration, but I just wanted to binge-listen the whole thing. I wish there had been an option to speed the whole book up a little. 

However, the character voices are so, so, so spot on. You hardly find a narrator that can pull off male AND female voices flawlessly. Brettschneider sounds believable as a 16 year-old teen just as much as a 40-something Dad. It's a little terrifying how good she is, actually. I didn't even notice it's the same person talking. This sounds strange, but she really is that good at sounding like men. I'm in awe. She could have single-handedly narrated the whole audio book alone.



Overall: Do I Recommend?

I'm an alien enthusiast and I have read more alien books than I can count. BUT: This is by far my favorite.
It's written so relatably, so believably, and the world building is amazing. "The 5th Wave" reads like mixture of "The Reapers are the Angels" and "The Host". Just more ruthless and realistic. If an alien invasion is ever going to happen in my life time, this is how it's going down. "The 5th Wave" should be compulsory reading for all YA alien stories fan. Nevermind me while I run to the next book store to pick up a physical copy of this as well.

Additional Info

Published: April 14th 2014 
Pages: 496
Genre: YA / Sci-Fi / Aliens

"After the 1st wave, only darkness remains. After the 2nd, only the lucky escape. And after the 3rd, only the unlucky survive. After the 4th wave, only one rule applies: trust no one.

Now, it's the dawn of the 5th wave, and on a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs from Them. The beings who only look human, who roam the countryside killing anyone they see. Who have scattered Earth's last survivors. To stay alone is to stay alive, Cassie believes, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan Walker may be Cassie's only hope for rescuing her brother--or even saving herself. But Cassie must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death. To give up or to get up.(Source: Goodreads)

 Have you read The 5th Wave?

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

[Review] Incarnate (Newsoul #1) - Jodi Meadows

In INCARNATE, there are exactly one million souls in the world that keep getting reborn. When Ana is born, the scholars fail to identify her soul, leading to the assumption that she is a new soul. 

What intrigued me: I absolutely love the idea behind this.

The Story Lacks World Building

Reincarnation is a very broad topic and in other to do it right you have to make up a lot of mythology and really think this through. Meadows takes the easy road and just lets us off with "there's a million souls and everybody knows everybody - except Ana". If you think about this logically, it doesn't even make any sense to have everyone know everybody. There's no way people remember each other, even if they have lived 5000 years. And am I the only one that thinks it's really, really, really disturbing that eventually you'll give birth to someone that used to be your lover or even your parent in another life?

While the writing is very poetic and easy to read, I just felt like the story wasn't really moving forward at all. The days blur into each other and the three weeks that Sam and Ana spend with each other don't leave any room for chemistry or sympathy to form. What makes it even more difficult to picture these two as love interests is that Ana constantly reminds herself of how old Sam actually is and that he only appears to be a teenager. The bottom line is, I didn't empathize with either Ana or Sam. 

Why Won't You Give Me Answers?

Ana is just your typical YA heroine that gets treated poorly her entire life and just in the novel rediscovered her self-worth, because some guy suddenly shows some interest in her. I'm not a fan of passive characters that let themselves get beat down by society. It's pretty predictable that Ana will do a 360 and become self-confident and strong by the end of the series.

The main reason why I didn't like Ana is that she doesn't seem to be interested in digging into her past. She claims that the reason for leaving her home is to find out why she born in the first place, but in fact she does nothing to find out. It's absolutely frustrating to have to go through page after page, craving to finally get answers. Instead, you're stuck with two insanely chemistry-less teenagers doing nothing all day. Yeah, I guess Meadows is trying to get us to like to see these two together, but it just frustrated and annoyed me. So much wasted potential for a story that could have been epic.




Overall: Do I Recommend?

The premise is absolutely beautiful, but the poor pacing just makes this a very exhausting read. I didn't empathize with Sam enough to care about Ana and him forming a relationship and I just craved more information about why Ana got reborn in the first place. 

"New soul
Ana is new. For thousands of years in Range, a million souls have been reincarnated over and over, keeping their memories and experiences from previous lifetimes. When Ana was born, another soul vanished, and no one knows why.
No soul
Even Ana’s own mother thinks she’s a nosoul, an omen of worse things to come, and has kept her away from society. To escape her seclusion and learn whether she’ll be reincarnated, Ana travels to the city of Heart, but its citizens are afraid of what her presence means. When dragons and sylph attack the city, is Ana to blame?
Sam believes Ana’s new soul is good and worthwhile. When he stands up for her, their relationship blooms. But can he love someone who may live only once, and will Ana’s enemies—human and creature alike—let them be together? Ana needs to uncover the mistake that gave her someone else’s life, but will her quest threaten the peace of Heart and destroy the promise of reincarnation for all?"

Do You Know Any Novels About Reincarnation?

Continue Reading...

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

10 Fictional Characters I'd Like to Check in With | Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originating from The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday they choose topics that we are supposed to create a list about, considering our personal reading preferences.  

This Week: 

  Top Ten Characters You'd Like To Check In With 


Evanna Lynch as Luna Lovegood

10. Luna Lovegood 
from Harry Potter Series by Joanna K. Rowling
I absolutely adored Luna and wouldn't have minded a spin-off series just about her. Actually I wouldn't even have minded if the entire thing was just about Luna in the first place. She's such a wonderful inspiring character and so wonderfully unique. A role model.

9. Ashley Black
from Lux Series by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Ok, that's a weird one. Ashley Black is the child of Dawson Black and Bethany Williams if anyone remembers. She's only a baby when the series ends but I'm really curious as to how this whole thing ends?? Can I have a spin-off????

8. Wanda
from the Host by Stephenie Meyer
What happened to the sequels?? Wasn't it supposed to be a trilogy? Instead all we got is a bad movie starring Sashuiaghsia Ronan, or whatever her name is. I refuse to include a picture of Emily Browning portraying my dearest Wanda, because it's so not what she looks like in the book and I am very upset. I want the sequel, the story can't just end there, I'm genuinely upset about this!

7. Hazel Grace Lancaster 
from The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
I'm going to ask the question that we've all been thinking: DID SHE DIE?! Didn't John Green say something like she died a year later? If so, I'm upset and I'm going to have a serious conversaion with Mr. Green. Let me know in the comments!

Paul Bettany as Dustfinger

6. Dustfinger
from Inkworld Series by Cornelia Funke
Oh Lord, do not talk to me about Dustfinger. I read the series when I was very young and I'm pretty sure he was my first official book boyfriend. I miss that lying bastard and I will never ever forget Cornelia Funke for killing him off. 
(But yeah, I bet she loved that idiot as much as I did, if you've read Inkdeath y'all know what I'm talking about. I'm still upset though.) It's time for a reread I guess.

5. Andy 
from Breathers: A Zombie's Lament by S.G. Browne
Ok, before you interrupt me: The ending is totally open to interpretation, alright!! Don't!! Even!! I want to know what happens, I want to have another hilarious novel told from his perspective and most of all I want my precious little angel child to be happy again. Yeah, he's a brain-eating zombie, but it's not like he wanted it, okay

4. Magnus 
from Blood Coven Series by Mari Mancusi
Introducing my second book boyfriend. I read the first book when I was twelve I think and he took me by storm. Magnus is the most awkward vampire you'll ever meet and he's just adorable. I hear there's a lot of sequels to the original novel, but I've only read one so far. It's always weird to pick up old childhood favorites as a wannabe-adult. Maybe I'm going to continue the series and check in on my man.

3. Teddy Lupin
from Harry Potter Series by Joanne K. Rowling
I have no idea why I am obsessed with characters that had -28% screen time in the books. Teddy Lupin was basically non-existent + a baby, but he still managed to snog my heart. Need a spin-off about him, alright?

2. Rose Hathaway
from Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead 
Shush, I know that we had a six-book-series AND a short story starring her but I can't get enough of her and her Russian lover. I want to know everything about their life, if they adopted baby vampire kids, what they have for breakfast - EVERYTHING
Kristen Stewart as Isabella Swan
You do not want to know the true extent of my obsession with her and this book series, you really don't.

1. Bella Swan 
from the Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer
Yeah, I'm going there, I really don't care. I freely admit to being a TwiHard in my teens and there's nothing wrong with that. Seriously this franchise hit me so hard when I was about fourteen, it's scary. That's actually how I got into fan fiction in the first place, because I didn't want Twilight to end. 

Yes, Bella Swan is super boring, yada yada yada. 
I still want to know every single detail of what happened to Edward, Renesmee, Carlisle, Esme and what their names all are.

What do you think of those characters?

Would you like to check in on any of these?

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