August 2015 Wrap-Up

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It’s the last day of August which means it’s time to see how I did during the month. Here is what my TBR looked like:

  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
    I enjoyed reading this, but I don’t love it as much as many other people do. I think it may have been hyped too much for me.
  • Armada by Ernest Cline
    I actually liked this better than RPO and think I am fairly alone with that opinion. Doesn’t matter, I liked it and can’t wait for it to be turned into a movie, because that’s what it felt like while reading.
  • The Martian by Andy Weir
    I LOVE this book!!! It has become an insta-favourite of mine simply because it is so much more hilarious and smart than I thought it would be.
  • The Magicians Trilogy by Lev Grossman (I read the first book, so I see it as an accomplishment)
    The pacing of the first book was a little off and the characters a bit too miserable for my taste but I will still read the other two books.

Additionally to that, I also read:

If you want to know more about my thoughts on the books than just that 1-sentence-review, just click on the titles and you’ll be re-directed to my full reviews. If you click on the covers below, you’ll get to their respective Goodreads pages.

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So, I’d say it was a fairly average month for reading, because I’ve definitely read more but also less books per month before. All in all I am happy with the outcome.

I’ve posted more than usually though by making sure to write on a daily basis (sometimes even more than one post per day) since August 11. I don’t know what inspired me to do that, but it definitely showed in a surge of followers and we are getting really close to a milestone soon! I want to take this chance to welcome everyone who’s fairly new to the blog and thank those who’ve stuck around! You are the ones that make this blogging experience even more fun!!!

I’ll try to keep this up in September ;)! Read you soon!

The Fandom Book Tag!

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Cristina from My Tiny Obsessions has once again done me the honour and tagged me for a Book Tag. I am especially happy that it is The Fandom Book Tag (originally created by Fangirlfashionista) because I am part of so many of those fandoms myself. I’m geeking out just thinking about it! Prepare for awesomeness because this is going to be a loooong post!

DOCTOR WHO: A BOOK WITH A (MOSTLY) BLUE COVER

It’s not TARDIS-blue but Sapphire Blue (Ruby Red Trilogy #2) by Kerstin Gier

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MARVEL: A BOOK WITH A (MOSTLY) RED COVER

The Elite (The Selection Series #2) by Kiera Cass.

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THE SIMPSONS: A BOOK WITH A (MOSTLY) YELLOW COVER

Hector and the Search for Happiness by Francois Lelord (note to self: should finally watch the movie!)

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Read More »

Armada Book Review

I’ve just finished another book from my August TBR and this time it’s Armada also by Ernest Cline. If you haven’t read my review about his first novel Ready Player One, you should click here to read it! Again, I’ll try to keep this review as Spoiler-free as possible but I am more than happy to discuss the book in more detail in the comments.

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Zack Lightman spends much of his time gaming, but when one of the spaceships from his favourite game Armada appears in front of his school, he starts doubting his sanity. What Zack is seeing is all too real though. It tuns out the game was preparing him for real battle all along and soon his gaming skills, as well as those of million others, will be needed to defend earth against an extraterrestrial threat. 

(If you want to read the full Goodreads synopsis, just click on the cover!)

I think I am probably one of very few people who thinks so, but I actually liked Armada more than I liked Ready Player One. The story felt a lot more fluent and didn’t drag as much. Again, Cline takes his time to set-up the world we are living in and the circumstances we have to deal with. I feel like this is sort of his trademark since it also took some time until things really kicked off in Ready Player One in my opinion. I get that Armada‘s set-up is a lot simpler than the one of RPO, but it didn’t actually bother me as much. Also, the references were still there but in comparison more modest and not so overwhelming.

He sort of lost me for a moment when he mentioned a giant swastika etched into the surface of Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons. I got over it eventually, but couldn’t it have been any other one of Jupiter’s moons? And did it really have to be a Nazi-symbol? It totally made sense in the end, but I am sensitive when it comes to World War II related stuff. Maybe it’s because of where I am from, maybe it’s just me. Right then it turned me off from wanting to read on, because that topic is just annoying to me, but as I said, I got over it and it was fine.

There are a lot of plot- and character-twists along the way and I very much liked the ending! It is sort of happy-ish but with a lot to think about. I don’t feel like I got cheated out of the ultimate answer, but more like it left an opening for a continuation of some sort.

A movie adaptation is not only very likely for this book (I think they were already discussing it before the book was even released) but I can also imagine it looking really good.

Fazit: 4/5 stars So, maybe it takes a little until the story takes off, but I really enjoyed it and think it’s definitely worth a read.

What are your thoughts?

Ready Player One Book Review

As mentioned in my August TBR, Ready Player One by Ernest Cline was one of the first books I wanted to read this month, especially since I have Armada next on my list. I’m doing my best to keep this review Spoiler-free, but if you want to discuss something in more detail, we can talk in the comments!

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It’s the year 2044 and most of humanity has retreated into a virtual world called OASIS, rather than facing the devastating reality of worldwide famine, poverty and disease. Yet when the creator of the OASIS, James Halliday, dies and sets up a contest for all OASIS players in order to find the heir to his massive fortune and the OASIS itself, there is hope again.
For years, millions of people have tried to solve the riddles Halliday has left behind but it is Wade Watts, a boy who pretty much grew up in the OASIS, who is the first person to ever make it onto the leaderboard. Suddenly the hunt is on again and he finds himself pitted against his crush, his best friend and an evil corporation that doesn’t hold back from threatening his real life.

Let’s start by saying that I enjoyed this book so much! I am not really a gamer, but even I understood most of the references in the book. In total there are about a gazillion references to 80’s pop culture, not just to games but also movies and TV shows. While not all of them are really necessary for the story, they are still a lot of fun and show a real appreciation for the time. Ernest Cline definitely managed to solidify his Geek status with this book!

In my opinion the book can be very exciting, but it also has some extremely slow parts. For one, it takes quite some time until the actual Hunt starts. I get that it took them all years to decipher the first clue, so they’re not going to solve the rest of the riddles within hours, but it just dragged and at times felt like nothing was moving forward at all. Also, I had trouble getting how much time had actually passed since it was often weeks or even months, but it didn’t necessarily feel like it.

Nonetheless, the characters all worked really well with each other, had some great surprises in store for us and showed that there can be a real connection/friendship/relationship with people you’ve never once met in real life. In the end, the only thing I might have wished for was a little bit more explanation about what would happen in future. But I sense that that was left out on purpose, like Cline wanted you to make your own decision.

All the while reading this book, I wondered if and how this would work as a movie. Some scenes I could clearly picture in my head, others not at all. However, my point is that I thought a lot about whether this would work as a movie adaptation and the answer is yes. So, I was extremely happy and excited to find out that Ready Player One is set to be released in 2017 and directed by Steven Spielberg (according to imdb). There’s no cast yet, but I’ll definitely keep an eye out for that!

So, as I said, Armada is up next and I’m really excited about it as well! If it’s anything like Ready Player One, I’m sure it will be really good!

August 2015 TBR

August TBR

 

As promised during my July Wrap-Up, here is my belated August TBR!

The list is unfortunately not very long. I would like to read more and I do have a huge TBR pile, which I’m not really in the mood for. So, here are the books I definitely want to read:

  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
    If heard so many good things about this book, I just can’t wait any longer.
  • Armada by Ernest Cline
    Yeah, it’s somewhat of a Cline-Marathon. I scored myself a signed hardcover-copy of Armada during my stay in Wales and I’m really excited about it. I heard that it’s very similar to Ready Player One and since I’m reading them one after the other, I’ll be able to judge if that’s true.
  • The Martian by Andy Weir
    People who know me, know that I can’t resist a book that’s been adapted for the big screen, especially if the movie had a good trailer. I often by books depending on which trailers I like to be honest. It may seem weird, but I read some great stories because of that. (Click here to watch the trailer!)
  • The Magicians Trilogy by Lev Grossman
    This one I can’t be sure to read this month. It’s not because I don’t want to, but rather because I don’t know if my bookstore will actually have it in 1-2 weeks as promised, or like I know them, in one month. This has been adapted as a TV show and is said to be some grown-up Harry Potter version. I really want to read it! (Click here to watch a First Look of the show!)

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Click on the covers of the books to be redirected to Goodreads for more information! My month seems to be very sci-fi-heavy. How about you? What are you reading during August?