Posts tagged literary
Posts tagged literary
I encountered something very interesting at the local Barnes & Noble recently. There are two summer reading tables for teens. One carries titles likeThe Catcher and the Rye, The Diary of Anne Frank, The Hobbit,and about 4 Hemingway titles. The other table carries titles likeMatched, Maze Runner, Thirst,and Sarah Dessen novels. Looking at the two it is easy to see that many teens would most likely default to the second table as they look more interesting. Why have the separate tables? Why not just combine and have one table?
Apparently the first table is the table of books that students are required to read for schools and the second table are enjoyable books for teens to read. I went to a very small Catholic high school and never had required school reading (although I was and am nerdy enough to have probably enjoyed it). Why do we force students to read over the summer? I mean schools get to dictate what we read during the school year, but why should they get to dictate our summer reads as well? I understand the thinking process that not everyone likes to read so this makes sure students read at least the few books that are required. However, with the amount that I read, this is a punishment. For people like me, we are forced to make time in the summer to read books required by the school just like we do during the year.
I never did that. During the school year I read what I wanted, when I wanted and there was no way to persuade me otherwise. When teachers would ask why I hadn’t read the assigned book I would answer that I was busy reading something else. It wasn’t that I just assumed I would hate the required reading, I just had something I was more interested in reading.
Who are you to dictate my reading? You don’t know what I like to read. My guess is that some teachers assume teen girls in the summer are reading Twilight and the likes. Guess what, we don’t all worship Twilight and books just like it. Those books are not well written. Yes, I read them. I treated them like a guilty pleasure. I was gifted the second and third books in the series so of course I read the whole thing. You are obsessed with the story but for me, it ended with the last page of the last book.
Have we ever approached school required reading as a punishment? If so, have we ever looked at it as a punishment for the readers and not just the non-readers? Having a bookcase shoved full of books I want to read, I would be opposed to required school reading. As it is, I still don’t have the time to read everything I want to.
Day 1 → Your Faction
Maze Runner Trilogy
By James Dashner
If you haven’t read these books, you need to go buy them now. Many people have told me that if I liked the Hunger Games then this trilogy should be on my TBR (To Be Read) list. I don’t necessarily think that these books represent the same trials as the Hunger Games, but there are similarities. The teens/children are continuously tested and everything seems like a test.
Imagine waking up in a metal box and remembering only your name. Then the box opens and there are dozens of boys looking at you and asking you questions. Thomas wakes to this and is suddenly in the Maze. One new boy arrives every month, no more and no less. Until the day after Thomas arrives. The schedule is disrupted and Teresa arrives the day after Thomas.
Then things in the Maze start going wrong. Food stops coming as do the supplies. The sun doesn’t come out and it is like the world is ending. Thomas and Teresa know that they have something to do with this change, but what? Without their memories, can they really hope to understand it?
Dashner is great at making characters lovable and easy to relate to. All I wanted was for Thomas to end up happy. By the third book, Thomas has been through so much that I just wanted to steal him away and make everything better. Yes I know how ridiculous that sounds, but oh well. These three books are filled with lies, betrayal, friendship, heart ache, and so much more. I read all three in 4 days in between working two jobs because I just didn’t want to put them down.
As a series, I say 4 out of 5 stars.
(Source: , via the-fandom-warrior)
Just in case you thought I was spouting off a bit about this stop the bullying website, here’s an article that Huffington Post let them submit and angry reader responses. There is also a response to this article so you can see both sides of the issue here. You should never feel threatened simply because you write a review. It is how many people get recommendations. I’ve blown off many a review to read a book I really wanted to read. Reviews are opinions and should not be censored unless the reviewer is making ridiculous claims against the author. It is our freedom as reviewers and readers to like or dislike any book we choose.
A friend of mine on Goodreads recently liked a post by an author. I usually check these out because this friend is 1) pretty awesome 2) has similar book tastes as me and 3) doesn’t like things for no reason. What I found is that there has been a controversy about a new website created to stop the bullying on Goodreads. The author that posted the review (from what I gather) believes the site is run by unhappy authors who have gotten some negative reviews on Goodreads. Essentially, the site “exposes” people who negatively review books and attack authors.
The problem that the Goodreads author finds is that this new site (stopthegrbullies.com) actually gives out reviewers’ real names and locations. In fact, one person they exposed tweeted about how his location was shared and that people could easily find him. The site then scoffs at the idea that people would actually take action against a reviewer. Is that not what they are encouraging? Their response is that the reviewer should then tone down his reviews and it wouldn’t be a problem. So they have the right to give out a reviewer’s real name and location unless reviewers tone down their negative reviews, but reviewers don’t have the right to have negative reviews?
My problem with this is that I recently gave a highly anticipated book a negative review on Goodreads. The negative review came from the content of the book, but I was also frustrated about how it was available. Another review commented on my post, calling me stupid and lame and saying who am I to care how the book is offered. Well I’m a reader of this particular author who has all of his books so it is important to me how the books are offered. In this case, the author actually responded and said that the negative commenter ran counter to his beliefs.
As much as I disliked the negative comment, I wouldn’t want this person’s personal information released. As I said in my reply to him, we are all entitled to our opinions. Opinions make the world go round. An author has the right to defend their book, just as we readers have the right to dislike it. It is a huge step backwards if you now want to censor reviews. As someone who has probably spent more than 70% of all the money I’ve ever made on books, I usually have a lot to say about the books I read. Goodreads exists for a reason. People want non-biased opinions from other readers. You have to take the good with the bad. Authors can sell more books if there are positive reviews, but you can’t expect everyone to love your book(s). I don’t think you should ever censor other reviewers. Maybe I’m alone in this. What I do find funny is that this site has a “what can you do” page that basically implies the only way to combat negative reviews is to buy the book being reviewed and leave a positive review. And here I thought we were arguing against people bullying authors. So even if a book is terrible you should leave a positive review?
I don’t want to sound angry, but the Internet has a funny way of making a tone sound many different ways to many different people. This is simply meant as an informative post with the real question of where do you fall?
By Harlan Coben
I was able to read this as a digital ARC from a publisher’s online program. Thus I didn’t pay for that book. I would have. I would have bought it the first day it was available.
This is the second book of the Mickey Bolitar series. It is as good if not better than Shelter. This book literally picks up right where the first book left off. I mean the same scene, with Mickey talking to the same person. It just flows. You should read the books back-to-back because it just flows from book one to book two.
In this installment, Mickey is confronted with still trying to figure out what happened to his father the day of the accidents so many years ago. I can’t bear to give away any major details so here’s what I came up with: Two people get shot, drugs, dirty cops, a fire, a butcher from WWII, and a Nazi camp survivor. All those things weave together to make an unbelievable plot. With all the different strings going, many authors lose their plot. Coben is a master at this. He keeps all the different things going without losing his readers.
Then ending is much like the ending of Shelter, there’s a cliffhanger. Although the cliffhanger is not as bad as Shelter in a I’m-not-going-to-yell-and-scream-until-I-get-the-next-book sort of way. However, I already want the next book. I want to know what happened to Mickey’s dad. I want to see how Mickey’s relationship evolves with Myron. Is it possible that Win will make an appearance? (In case you can’t tell, I really want Win to appear).
I give this 5 out of 5 stars.
Go pre-order the book so that you can have it as soon as it is printed. Stop reading, go order it. NOW.