Mindstormer by A.J. Steiger (eARC Review)

Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Page Count
: 320

*I was provided with an eARC by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!*

As you know, I’ve read the first book in this duology (?) only recently. You can check out my review for Mindwalker HERE!

While I wasn’t the biggest fan of the predecessor of Mindstormer, I was pleasantly surprised by the beginning of this one. It really switched things up and kept you wondering what had happened. Lain having lost her memory sort of resets all her relationships back to when book one started, but since you know how she is “supposed to feel” towards certain characters, it really creates an interesting dynamic.

Unfortunately that was only the first part and then there is an entire flashback to the three months we missed. That’s when things sort of turned generic for me again and constantly kept reminding me of things I had read or seen before. I was also very frustrated with Lain and Steven’s behaviour during that time. I seriously started to think that Ian would become a valid option, simply because Lain and Steven didn’t interact with each other whatsoever. People change when they are thrown into extreme circumstances and it would not have been far fetched for me if they had simply grown apart, but apparently that wasn’t the master plan behind it. I just got so annoyed with their very opposite beliefs clashing, both of them being stubbornly idealistic in their own ways.

Something about this series just rubs me the wrong way. I am not sure I can really put a finger on it, but the portrayal of the countries and their relationship was odd to me (Like, can you imagine Canada building a wall to the US and then becoming one of the countries with the harshest internment camps on the planet?). In addition to that, I could not really agree with either form of suggested government and whenever Lain proposed a less violent approach, not even she could come up with concrete ideas on what they were actually supposed to do.

In the end, I was glad that the characters didn’t come out of this unscathed. Events like the ones they went through leave a mark and they’ll have to live with their actions forever. Ultimately, I liked it better than the first book, but it will never become one of my favourite series.

Fazit: 3/5 stars!

Would you read this series? Did you check out the sequel?

Trailers You Might Have Missed … (June 12-18)

It’s been both, a quiet yet exciting week for me. I am a little tired of the constant travelling, so I am taking things slow now that I am in a location I intend to stay for a while. It seems to not have been equally as quiet on the trailer front though. Here’s what I found!

Movies

Goodbye Christopher Robin

If this is anything like Finding Neverland, I am going to cry buckets.

Flatliners

I don’t think I have seen the original version of this and therefore I have like no opinion on whether this is better or worse, but why does Hollywood have to do a remake for everything?

Home Again

I am still madly in love with all three 20-something guys in this movie. And I am okay with Reese’s character having whatever relationship it is with them, because I see that with reversed genders all the time, so bring it on.

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure

Olaf is SO cute!

Daddy’s Home 2

How on earth did this get a sequel??

Detroit

John Boyega is killing it in whatever he is in. I got anxious for him just watching this trailer.

Some Freaks

I could see this being really powerful, because some people are straight nasty if someone doesn’t fit into their little box of how the world is supposed to be.

Tour de Pharmacy

That’s not really my kind of humour I am afraid.

Jungle

I don’t think I want to watch this but …

Seven Sisters

It starts like some sort of documentary voice over and then it turns completely dystopian!

Okja

The music is OUT OF THIS WORLD! Also, I still believe Okja looks like a hippo with floppy ears.

Happy Death Day

It’s like a weird/creepy version of Before I Fall?

Nobody Speak

I don’t understand why such a huge junk of it is about Hulk Hogan and then it becomes really political and about freedom of speech? Like the balance of the story is weird?

TV Shows

Friends from College

I might watch this.

The Night Shift (Season 4)

I haven’t watched the show in such a long time, but it looks very dramatic.

What are you watching? Do you like any of the things here?

Kat’s Adventure: Week 4 – Montréal

Do you know the feeling when you really like a place but somehow it just isn’t a right fit for you? That’s basically my time in Montréal in a nutshell. Let’s take a closer look!

Tuesday – Much Needed Friend-Time

I slept in pretty long that day and was actually a little glad when I realised that my host family wasn’t here. It was my first time using airbnb and while my stay as a whole was lovely, I wasn’t prepared to live with a 3 year old whirlwind, because that was simply not mentioned in the profile … but whatever.

I picked up my friend from work. We went to a coffee shop, bought artsy post cards and talked. There’s just no way to express how happy I was to have my best friend back, to talk about random and important stuff. That’s basically how I spent most of the day and I regret nothing.

Wednesday – Mont Royal

That day I met up with a girl I met from Germany, whom I had met on the bus when we both drove from Ottawa to Montreal. She was super easy to talk to and often felt like I had known her forever, but since she was alone in town, I was only too happy to “climb” Mont Royal together with her.

Everyone told me that it was easy to go up … well not the way we did it! We got astray several times, but in the end we always found a the things we wanted to see somehow. There is just this one time where we might as well could have stumbled onto the set of a zombie apocalypse movie. We found this seemingly abandoned clinic. Everywhere were health hazard signs and posters saying “We do not tolerate violence”. It was a fertility clinic but also a mental health hospital with bars on some of the windows. Not saying it was actually a bad place, but if felt creepy AF.

Thursday – Mural Festival

Thursday was the first day of the Mural Festival on St. Laurent. I love street art and there were a lot of people and vendors on the street, so I definitely checked that out.

Friday – Biosphere (and an unexpected evacuation)

It was my friend’s day off, so we got pancakes for brunch and then met up with one of her local friends to go to the Biosphere, an eco museum that offered free entry on that day. It was the same weekend as the Formula 1 Grand Prix though and you could hear the sound of the engines all around. Right when we wanted to go on a guided nature walk, the animator suddenly let us know that the museum was being evacuated. We still took the tour, because it was outside, but everything was still shut off when we got back … including the metro. Let’s just say I am not too fond of being stuck in a metal tube with crazy amounts of people.

Saturday – BBQ with a bunch of French people

I got to hang out with my friend and/or her roommates all week long, but this was an event where she wanted me to meet some of her other friends. Of course I want to get to know the people in her life, but she did a banging job at befriending a ton of French-speaking people. It’s not that they couldn’t speak English, just not as great and I understood their French, but I couldn’t say anything in return. At some point the conversations were just really stifling. I did end up having a lot of fun, but it’s just frustrating when people want to convince you that Montreal is the best and that you could easily immerse yourself into the French if you stayed. Well, guess what? I just don’t want to. I am fine with everyone loving that language, but I just don’t. English is my one true love and I am enjoying myself much more in solely English speaking areas. It’s a sad fact.

Sunday – Time’s Almost Up

It felt like time was passing way quicker in Montreal than any of the other cities before. I liked the layout and especially the area I was staying at. It was bright and lively but not in any way that felt rushed. I understood why my friend fell in love with the city, but I also knew it wasn’t for me. Still, saying goodbye would be harder than with the others before.

Monday – Old Montréal

I parked my suitcase at my friend’s place, because I only booked my airbnb room until that day, even though my plane wouldn’t leave until Tuesday morning. We went and explored old Montreal as well as the downtown area. We did some shopping and later we went to the mural festival again as well as to eat out. It had been a long day, since the anticipation of travelling always gets to me, but we made sure we really made the best of our time. Around 11 PM, I left for the airport and it was such a long night. I was lucky in so far that I met a really nice guy on the bus, who made the wait until 7 AM (around the time my flight would leave) infinitely more easy. My brain felt like utter mush by the time I finally left. I am sure I slept on the airplane, even though it didn’t feel like it at all. When we finally touched ground in Vancouver … it weirdly felt like coming home.

How was your week? How have you been?

Mindwalker by A.J. Steiger (Book Review)

Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Page Count
: 400

Do you know that feeling when you see a book on NetGalley and you’re like “Sure, that sounds interesting. Let’s request it!” but then you find out it’s a sequel and now you are forced to quickly read the first book to understand what’s going on in the other one? If you have never experienced this, count yourself lucky! It has happened so many times to me and mostly I don’t care, but when it comes to dystopian worlds, I like to get the full picture and not just feel lost along the story. I don’t feel like I could fairly review it otherwise. So, long story short, I accidentally requested (but really blame the publisher because they didn’t state it correctly) the sequel to this and now read this as fast as I could.

I haven’t read dystopians in a while now, but this felt as generic as they come. Bright young girl learns that the system she believed in isn’t as fair as it’s made out to be while also being entangled in a sort of love triangle – sound familiar? I felt like the relationship had a real Katniss-Peeta-Gale-dynamic to it, which means one of the boys was a Gale, which in my language means he never was a real prospect for the MC’s love anyway.

The concept of eradicating all mental health issues sounded interesting at first, but it soon became very disturbing. They literally put collars on people who have a problem at controlling their temper. In addition to that, they basically hand out suicide pills to the poorer population, because they don’t want to help those people like they do with the upper class. No, those folks can get their memories erased whenever something bad has happened. I do see the benefits of not having to remember e.g. being raped, but they also discuss how the memory wipe affects the person’s personality. Our memories and the things that have happend to us, may they be good or bad, make us into the people we are. They change us and wiping your mind clear of these events will forever make you a different person too.

There were some interesting theories thrown in the mix, but I found the execution very poorly. Lain, the main character, was annoyingly idealistic. I simply couldn’t understand why she believed she wasn’t monitored or why she acted against her gut feeling when it came to the character of certain people in her life. She was one of those special unicorn kind of girls, the one who has no friends at all, is super smart and has two handsome guys lusting for her from afar. I just felt like I have dealt with a character like that a million times before.

The beginning of the sequel seems promising in terms of them mixing things up with the narration, but I will see if I can enjoy it more. This definitely won’t make it into my favourites list for now.

Fazit: 2.5/5 stars! Could have been better executed.

Have you had trouble with NetGalley requests as well? Have you read this series and feel different than me?

Trailers You Might Have Missed … (June 5-11)

A little on the late side today, but that’s what happens when there’s a power outage at your place and you consequently don’t have internet. It’s sort of my final night here in Montreal, but that still doesn’t stop me from doing this little post for you. Enjoy!

Movies

Black Panther

I AM ALREADY IN LOVE!!!!!!!! I’ve been excited for this ever since he showed up in Civil War and people in my vicinity have been so meh about it, but JUST. LOOK. AT. IT! I want it now.

American Made

I will always be more excited about Domhnall Gleeson in a movie than I will be about Tom Cruise.

Landline

They really have the 90s look down.

First Kill

Not for me.

Blind

Still not really something I would personally watch.

Forever My Girl

Weirdly, I like those kind of country music full on cheese-fest movies.

You Get Me

So, I am super bitter about Netflix’ decisions lately and I am still not a fan of Bella Thorne … so, I am not into this.

TV Shows

Younger (Season 4)

NO NO NO NO NO NO … I might actually cry.

Degrassi: Next Class (Season 4)

Is it just me or is it really weird that they don’t mention Maya at all? Also, Frankie and Jonah used to be so cute … but now everyone is leaving and ugh … I can’t deal.

Victoria (Season 2) – First Look

Victoria and Albert are perfection.

Killjoys (Season 3)

I still haven’t seen the second Season … ooops.

Dark Matter (Season 3)

The premiere was actually really promising. I like where it’s going.

The Bold Type

Maybe.

Gypsy

This is going to be so messed up.

What are you watching? How are you doing?

It’s a 4-Year-Blogiversary!!!

Looking back at 4 years of blogging, I am astounded that there was never really a time where I wanted to quit. Sure, I had some lows and went on (un)planned hiatus ever now and then, but never once did I think about stopping altogether. I appreciate this little community way too much to truly step away for good. I’ve made some amazing friends who I wouldn’t want to miss for the world and I even got to meet some people in real offline life who’ve mostly been pictures and words on my screen before. My appreciation goes out to all of you who visit this blog, not just those who I’ve become close friends with, but all of you who comment, share, like or simply read the things I write about.

So often blogging has felt like me simply shouting into the void. I know that I don’t talk about life-changing subjects. There are people out there who do incredible work, blogging about important topics such as diversity and equality in conjunction with TV and books. Every day I find myself learning from them and seeing all the ways my discussion are still lacking substance. I am a simple girl. I am mostly content with mainstream media and sometimes that means I still make mistakes, but just sharing a common passion can connect people so much. I have received so many deeply personal responses to posts that might seem trivial to others, but spoke to a couple readers and that makes it all so worth it.

I hope to continue this journey for many more years to come. Even if the amount and topics of my posts vary over time, I can’t see a future where Life and Other Disasters isn’t part of my life anymore.

I want to thank you all, but due to a tight travel budget, I can’t really do a proper giveaway at the moment. However, if you would like to receive a post card while I am still away on my “little vacation”, you can send me an email with your full name and address to:

impossiblegirlblog@gmail.com

Please make sure you are allowed to send me your info if you are not yet 18+ years old and please also refrain from posting your address in the comments or I will have to delete said response. To make things easier for me to organise, put “I want a post card” in your subject line. Depending on how many requests I get, I might not be able to do them all or I might have to space them out over time. I’m still in Canada for a couple more months, so it shouldn’t be too much of an issue. If for some reason I am not able to send you a card, I will still let you know.

Again, thank you so much for your continued support! TIME TO CELEBRATE!

Kat’s Adventure: Week 3 – Ottawa

I had the nicest welcome in Ottawa, with someone giving me their day pass for the bus upon my arrival. However, that sentiment didn’t really reflect what was happening for the rest of the week. Let’s break it down.

Tuesday – Getting Organised

The weather wasn’t exactly nice, but I had the room at my hostel all to myself the night before so I was at least well rested. I thought I should do some recon and got a bit of a feeling for the area. There was a lot of sitting around at Starbucks involved (which you can find like three times on any given street) and then I just wrote some post cards and bought some food for the hostel. It’s so much cheaper to prepare food yourself, instead of eating out all the time. Come evening, the hostel was almost full and there were so many new people to meet. I seriously just don’t have anything exciting to say about this day.

Wednesday – Parliament Hill/ByWard Market

Everything essential was in walking distance from my hostel, which was amazing. I teamed up with my roomie and we explored Parliament Hill in the morning. You can get free tickets for a tour of the parliament itself, in both French and English language, so we did that as well, but only in the evening. To kill some time until then, we went to go see ByWard market. It’s a very touristy area, but it’s great if you have no idea what you want to eat, because there’s a restaurant for almost everything. We also got some maple-leaf shaped cookies with Trudeau’s face on it. There’s just no way you can pass on that if you are willing to take hilarious photos in front of the Ottawa sign.
The tour later on was interesting, but I am not much of a stickler for politics. However, we did get to see the House of Commons still in session and the building itself is really beautiful too. It’s a free and I got to meet some nice solo-travelers there as well, so it’s definitely worth a recommendation.

Thursday – Ottawa Museum of Nature

This day was kind of the one where everything started to go South. I scheduled a Skype call with my mum to discuss my further travels after Montreal. I knew I wanted to get to Vancouver, but I didn’t really know how. So, my obvious options were bus, train or plane. I finally settled on plane and my mum sent me link for a place I might be able to stay at for the first weeks. Innocent me goes on the websites to book the plane ticket and accommodation and what happens? My credit card does not work. Naturally, I freaked out. It’s the most annoying and maddening feeling when something that should be fine just isn’t and there is very little you can do for the moment. I wasn’t sure if it was just an online thing, so I needed to somehow test if the card worked in a shop.
Every Thursday a majority of the museums in Ottawa offers free entry to their general exhibitions. My roomie and I went to the Museum of Nature. I have to admit, I was terrible company. I was in such a foul mood because of the credit card situation, but the museum was still very nice. They did their best to make the exhibitions interactive and fun, having quite the variety of subjects spread out on three floors. I was so tired on the way back from there, I just wrote a quick email to my credit card company, asking them about the easiest way to fix this mess. Let’s just say I didn’t sleep easy that night.

Friday – Still Freaking Out

I wake up to the glorious email that my card is active again. There was some kind of problem with a data transfer from a previous purchase, so they temporarily deactivated it for security reasons. I get my laptop, try to book on the same site I did the day before (only accommodation and not the plane, because my mum was kind enough to purchase that for me and I’ll pay her back when I get home again) and IT. DIDN’T. WORK. I was so pissed and worried. However, then I tried it in a shop and on other websites and it was just fine. Conclusion of this ordeal, do not book anything on 9flats! Now I have to monitor my credit card balance closely for the next weeks and I am NOT happy about that.

Saturday – National Gallery of Canada

There’s a vast variety of museums in Ottawa, but I like art. I studied it and they had a lot of artists I recognised as well as a bunch of stuff I have never seen before. You get a discount if you are a student or below 24 years of age, which was awesome, because 7 Dollars for an entire day pass is not a lot at all. I was pretty beat from the previous days, had a massive headache and was quite glad to get back to the hostel at that point. I was just innocently making a toast, which neither smoked, nor got charred or burned, and suddenly the smoke detector went off. It was so loud, it even affected my vision. I hated that week so much at this point.

Sunday – Feeling a Little Dead

I wouldn’t say that any of the bad stuff that happened to me had something to do with Ottawa, because it so obviously didn’t, but at that point I was just over it. I was tired of always having to lock up my stuff, I was tired of walking around all day, I was tired of not really having a place that was really my own. It didn’t feel like homesickness, because I didn’t want to be home in that moment, but I was kind of over the whole traveling aspect of my experience. I just wanted to get to a place and stay there.

Monday – Montreal, Here I Come

Traveling days always make me anxious, because I am afraid of forgetting something. I met a nice girl on the bus to chat with and Montreal is the current home of my best friend, so I was just so ready to get there. I was greeted by tons of rain that drenched me, but nothing could overshadow my happiness upon seeing my bestie after almost a year. I have high hopes for my time here, although I can already tell you that the French language and I will never become friends.

How was your week? Tell me all about it!