Inferno by Dan Brown

Summary

“Harvard professor of symbology Robert Langdon awakens in an Italian hospital, disoriented and with no recollection of the past thirty-six hours, including the origin of the macabre object hidden in his belongings. With a relentless female assassin trailing them through Florence, he and his resourceful doctor, Sienna Brooks, are forced to flee. Embarking on a harrowing journey, they must unravel a series of codes, which are the work of a brilliant scientist whose obsession with the end of the world is matched only by his passion for one of the most influential masterpieces ever written, Dante Alighieri’s The Inferno.

Dan Brown has raised the bar yet again, combining classical Italian art, history, and literature with cutting-edge science in this sumptuously entertaining thriller.”

-From Amazon.com

Review

This book was amazingly well done and SO scary. Not terror scary but because all the facts and scientific pieces of information are true, so that makes it way scarier to think about.

I just wanted to start off with the quote from the beginning of the book.

“The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis.”

Now, I am not 100% sure who said this comment but it seems like it was Dante Alighieri, but don’t quote me on that because it seems like there is a lot of discrepancies about who said it. But I really like this quote but I agree with it. Now there are many sides to every issue and to state that those who don’t pick a side or don’t have a say, essentially not caring, have a special place in hell.

Now, this book obviously has a lot of backlash online when you google it because it is a historic book, taking real things, places, and people, and using them in a novel so people like to rip these books apart and say how horrible it was and inaccurate it was. First off, this is a novel! You can’t quote it in a thesis or a research paper as even though it has facts, it is still a fictional piece and can’t be counted as a credible source. People seem to like to ignore this fact and say how inaccurate it was, and it partially annoys me, but you will always have those trolls whose main purpose is to rip others apart.

But with that aside, I honestly loved this book. It did take me much longer to read than a regular Dan Brown, just because I found the topic at hand quite stressful and also because I’ve been very busy so didn’t get to sit down and read as much. But I finally finished it in a 7 hour-long car drive, and am so glad that I read it. It was exciting, presented interesting ideas, and scared the living crap out of me because of some of the ideas presented.

For characters, each character changed throughout the novel. Some you thought were good and turned out to be bad but then were good-ish, then there were bad guys who were actually good….I mean serious confusion going on but it all was straightened out in the end, per usual.

The main character, Robert Langdon has been in some of his other novels so seeing him work on this type of case is nice because you get to see character development over longer periods of time which is a nice change.

Overall I do recommend this book. It’s a classical Dan Brown and if you like his other novels, then you are sure to like this one as well.

Happy reading and let me know what you think!

Dangerous Territory: An Alpha Ops novella by Emmy Curtis

Summary

“A SEXY STRANGER
Flirting with danger is reporter Grace Grainger’s modus operandi. But she’s learned the hard way not to grow attached to the soldiers she’s embedded with in Afghanistan. To escape from her pain and loneliness, she fantasizes about the hot night she spent with a gorgeous stranger three years before in D.C. Grace never thought she’d see him again-let alone need him to rescue her . . .
AN EXPLOSIVE NIGHT
Air Force Master Sergeant Josh Travers knows journalists are nothing but trouble. So when he has to risk the lives of his team to save some reporter who’s been separated from her patrol, he’s not happy-until he recognizes her stunning eyes and delicious curves. Josh has never wanted a woman like he wants Grace. Even in an Afghan cave with a sandstorm and enemy troops closing in, he can’t deny the desire. This might be the end for both of them-or one hell of a beginning.”

-B&N.com

Review

This book was honestly adorable. It was a short story, only about 115 pages on my iPad and $0.99 from the iBook store. It was about 30,000 words which is below the aim for NaNoWriMo so it was a really fast read. It had a cute relationship, adding the explosive location of Afghanistan and in the middle of a war.

Like hot damn. Who gets it on in the middle of a battle field in a cave at night with Taliban just outside the mouth of your cave. These two characters; JT and Grace.

There was some nice character development and yes I would have loved more, but you have to remember that this was a novella, not a novel. Novella’s of series, in case people don’t know (as I didn’t used to), usually take minor characters and use them in a side story, or use the same ideas as the main series but take it on a different track. Also novellas are usually much, much shorter.

But overall, this was a cute and sweet story. The sex wasn’t graphic and there really wasn’t any crude language used. A few f-bombs and regular cursing but no seriously vulgar language which is a nice change.

I will definitely be checking out more of Emmy Curstis’ books as I ‘d love to see what she can do. I recommend this book for ages 17 and up as it is a mature theme but it’s an easy read as I said. Do check it out though!

So until next time my lovelies. Happy reading!

Favorite Quotes

“Good. My name is T.S, and I will be your rescuer today.”

“Well, soldier, is that a night-vision scope in your pocket, or are you just pleased to see me?”

 

‘How Far Your Favorite Authors Went For Their Love Of Books’

Everyone does something stupid for a book. You continue to read it as you walk into a mall and walk face first into an automatic door (haven’t done that yet.) You walk around your house reading it and miscalculated a doorway, walking smack into a door (done that.) You stay up into a new day to try to finish the pages of your favorite book (been there and done that LOTS of times.)

But these authors, some of them, went a little bit beyond. Click here to find out just how far they went for their love of books.

The Light Between Oceans (A Novel) by M.L. Stedmad

Summary

“After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as a lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock. To this isolated island, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up carrying a dead man and a living baby. In. M.L. Stedman’s mesmerizing novel we, we are seduced into accommodating Isabel’s decision to keep this “gift from God,” and we are swept into their story.”

-From the back cover

Review

I shall start off by saying that this was a book I would have never read but it was the required book for my school so I didn’t really have a choice. And honestly, I really disliked this book.

It was so damn depressing and on such a sad topic.

I mean come on, you can tell in the summary that it’s going to be sad – miscarriages and a stillbirth.

My school couldn’t have chosen a happier book? -.-

Anyway. The story was pretty good but it was really convoluted. Chapters were broken up into sections and some sections would be in different people points of view and it going confusing fast as to who was speaking and when that actually happened because it would jump between times and such. That annoys me when it does that without telling you when it actually is happening clearly because then you get confused and such.

As I said the story line was quite depressing and with a child being taken from someone (can’t say what exactly as it’s in the story later on) you get extremely stressed over what is occurring and I really dislike that in books. If its sci-fi or action its fine, but not in  a book like this that is based in reality.

There really isn’t a lot to say in this book as there was no character development that I was able to see, and overall I just really didn’t like the book.

I know that many people would be interested in something like this, but personally I wouldn’t recommend it.

But if you have read it and have a different view on it, let me know what you think about it.

Until then, happy reading.

The Art of War by Sun Tzu

Summary

“Listed in the Marine Corps Professional Reading Program, The Art of War has influenced military tactics since the being written around the 6th century B.C. by Sun Tzu. The book has been credits to tactics used by General Normal Schwarzkoph and General Colin Powell in the Persian Gulf War. The Art of War has also been linked to other military leaders such as Napoleon, Vo Nguyen Giap, ho Chin Minh, and Mao Zedong.

Although written by Sun Tzu as a military reference, The Art of War is full of advice that has helped people of all backgrounds to prepare for many of life’s battles. The teachings of Sun Tzu go beyond the traditional battlefields and have been used in the boardroom, in sports, and anywhere challenges need to be faced and overcome.”

-From the back flap of the 2010 edition by P.L Publications, translated from Chinese by Lionel Giles, M.A.

Review

This book…..I’m honestly still working on processing it.

The book, my version (there are TONS of translations) was only 73 pages, but in that small amount of time, a lot of information was thrown at you and it was REALLY deep stuff.

When I started reading this book, I kind of sat there like, “Why can’t the US Military follow these rules?” But then as you progress and you see the word “chariot” and words such like that. This book really doesn’t apply to modern warfare anymore as land battles can be won from the air with planes and drones now. But its the thought process that still can be applied. As it said on the back cover, it’s good to apply to life and you most definitely can do that.

This is an older read, just because younger people won’t understand it at all. I had a hard enough time with it. You were constantly re-reading points to make sure that you actually understood what was written.

I do recommend reading this book just because of some of the points in it. None of this I would ever use because I am not a soldier, but still, the though process which is suggested in some of the points in the book are interesting and can be applied to life’s challenges.

There isn’t much else to say about it. It’s a classic, and an ‘easy’ read so if you have some spare time, go and check it out.

Let me know what you think while you’re at it ^.^

Happy reading!

P.S. Unfortunately I can’t find the cover of MY version of the book, but I love it. It’s a guy holding a Katana with a sunset behind him. All you see are his arms grasping the weapon. And with my personal love of Katanas…I just had to xD.

I’m Raising The White Flag

I have surrendered.

I can’t read War and Peace right now, unfortunately, as I just don’t have the time.

D:

I’m quite upset as I really thought I’d be able to read it this year, but with my life, I don’t have time to commit.

So I’ve put it to the side for now, and is on my to-read list. I’ll either pick it up later this year or start it in January.

But I WILL read it. Just…not right now :P

A Secret Purchase ~ SHHHH!

I purchased Archangel’s Legion by Nalini Singh yesterday (read the review of the entire series here) and I’m SOOOOO excited.

I love this series so much and am slowly purchasing all the books so I can have the entire series. I only have Archangel’s Blade, which I’ve read 3 times, and now I have a second one (which is the last book in the series).

Maybe I should purchase the first one…o.o

But I’ll work at that.

Do you guys have any books that you just have to purchase the entire series (even if its massive) because you love it so much?

This is my series…because I’m literally in love.

Must Love Dukes by Elizabeth Michels

“Who ever thought a duke would be so daring?”

Summary

She can’t resist a dare.
Lillian Phillips could not imagine how her quiet, simple life had come to this. Blackmailed by the Made Duke of Thornwood into accepting one wild dare after another…all because of a pocket watch. Desperate to recover her beloved father’s pawned timepiece, Lily did something reckless and dangerous and delicious – something that led to a night she’d never forget.

He has a reputation for scandal.
When Devon Grey, Duke of Thornwood, runs into the mesmerizing, intoxicating, thieving woman who literally stole from his bedchamber – with his new pocket watch – Devon plots his revenge. If the daring wench likes to play games, he’s happy to oblige. After all, what’s the use of being the Mad Duke if you can’t have some fun? But the last laugh just might be on him…

-From the back cover

Review

I’m just going to say it outright.

I thought this book was kinda mushy.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love mushy books and such, they are a simple read and fill your head with fluff and make you all warm and fuzzy, but for some reason I didn’t love this book as much as I thought I was going to. I guess I’m not into more….”medieval” romance literature as much as I thought, but I will try more incase maybe it was just this book.

So I’ll present what I liked and what I didn’t like in this book as there were some good things as well.

First off, what I didn’t like. Let’s rip that band-aid off. I didn’t feel like there was a lot of description. There wasn’t a ton of character development and I really dislike how it objectifies women. I’m all for woman empowerment, and I know that a woman wrote this, but it always gets on my nerves when women are treated like cattle, especially in this. The main character talked tough like she would fight back, but she didn’t do anything. She needed the Duke to come in and save her and while the ‘damsel-in-distress’ is good to read and all and many people like it, for this book…I don’t know, I didn’t work for me.

I also felt that the ending was kinda rushed. It was just suddenly all this stuff was happening, all this information was thrown at you, and BAM, the book ended. I was left sitting there like, “WTF…what just happened?”

In addition to this, this is a romance book. Most romance books either are just completely flirting and teasing or there is outright sex. This book I felt was in between. The one or two sex scenes in this book were…kind of lacking in my opinion. The description was fluffy (not saying it should be explicit, but it was too child-like) and it just got on my nerves. I’m not saying that you should use crude language or foul descriptions, but don’t make it all fluffy..it just ruins reading it. Either go for it, or don’t at all. People who usually read these types of books know all about this stuff, so just go for it in my opinion.

Now to the things that I did like.

The story overall was creative on how it progressed and the slow romance between the Duke and Lily, and it had many good qualities of him pursuing her, realizing his feelings for her, and going after her. Then there was the brother Solomon…I just wanted to smack him so much and I love when there is one of those characters. It pushes you to read on to find out if something happens to him in the end.

Overall, I would recommend this book, even though there were downsides. But these downsides pertained to me personally and my overall reading experience. I am sure that many others would like it as it has a classic love story and a male fighting for a womans love. So many would love this book and I say that you give it a shot if you’re interested in this type of stuff.

Let me know what you think and happy reading!

 

Corvette C3 1968-1982: How to Build and Modify (Performance How-To)

Summary

“The vast majority of Corvettes built between 1975 and 1982 are affordable and plentiful, and are ideal for high-performance builds. Learn how to transform a mundane C3 into a standout, high-performance car.”

-From Amazon.com

Review

Well this book is definitely something different. I received this book through the mail as I had apparently requested it which I honestly don’t remember doing. I love vehicles and all, but a book like this is something that I really would never read.

And, as I should be truthful, I didn’t really read this book either (the way you don’t read a cookbook, but flip through). I mostly just flipped through it as a lot of it I don’t really understand or have any interest in.

I’m not really a Corvette girl, never have been and I don’t really know why, so I guess I wasn’t terribly motivated to read this book either, but I was asked to do a review and I will as it was, still, an interesting book.

First off, this book is in color and has LOTS of pictures. This is really different from other car manuals I’ve read. Most just have instructions or small drawings, at most black and white pictures. But this is in full color with step-by-step pictures which really is useful if you are looking to build and/or modify your vehicle. There are even brightly colored boxes here and there to warn you about different issues and also little tips.

There is also a lot of writing; how to do different things and explaining what different things are.

Honestly, I didn’t understand most of the book. I may love cars, but I am not a mechanic by any means and so didn’t understand how most of it worked. But if you are into cars and are looking to remodel, this is definitely a possibility.

I recommend that you check it out as it is really quite interesting to flip through, and if someone else knows more about vehicles and reads this book, let me know how you think it would hold up if you REALLY wanted to used it as a manual.

The company did release a few other manuals for other vehicles so check them out as well.

Thanks, and happy reading!

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

Summary

“In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race’s next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew “Ender” Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn’t make the cut–young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training. Ender’s skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers, Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister. Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender’s two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If the world survives, that is.”

-From Amazon.com

Review

This book was, just wow. Nothing like I thought it was going to be. I had had this book sitting on my shelf for quite some time now but when I got it, the reading level was way beyond me and I didn’t understand the book. It starts as if it is part of a series and that is what threw me off to start with. But now that I found out that there was a movie being made of it, I decided to do a little looking around and found out that it indeed was the first one of the series (only just found out that there is more than 1 book in the series.) So I started reading it.

This book is definitely off the wall. The writing style is very strange and sometimes quite confusing but you just have to push through it because eventually it all starts to make sense. This is not a book that you can just sit down and read. You really have to give yourself a little time to actually sit and think about it. Some books you can just pick up and read about 3 pages of and then come back some time later and continue reading. This you cannot. You have to really read a good bunch of pages or finish a chapter before you can put it down because otherwise when you come back it will not make any sense at all. But I have to say that it was extremely well written. It kept you thinking, wondering what would happen, and it kept surprising you with different things that happened. The characters were developed quite well as you got to understand Ender and how he acted and how he felt in different situations. You really got close to him and felt bad for him during many situations.

Honestly, there is not a whole lot you can say about this book without giving anything away as there were many details that can ruin the book for you.

I am also going to tell you that nothing it what it seems and that the end is going to be shocking and leave you sitting there with your mouth open (metaphorically – except in my case where it actually was).

But I am going to tell you this…please read this book before you see the movie because I have a feeling that the movie is going to be different. I am also going to say that you have to get into the book before it starts the flow. The beginning feels a little rough, but it will all start to make sense later on. Just dive in and get going.

Good luck, enjoy the book, and let me know what you think.

Update: There is a movie for this book out and I saw it and thought it was fabulous. It wasn’t exactly like the book…but I still defiantly recommend that you watch it. But read the book first, because after the movie, reading the book will be really difficult.

Guild Hunter Series by Nalini Singh

Okay. So this is going to be on MASSIVE post about the ENTIRE Guild Hunter Series by Nalini Singh because there were 7 books (not including the novellas which I still have to read) and I feel that one LARGE post would be good. Otherwise you will see 7 posts of me ABSOLUTELY FANGIRLING!!!!!!!!

I. AM. SO. IN. LOVE. WITH. THIS. SERIES.

I will say this now. This is a mature reader series as there is graphic violence and….quite graphic sex scenes so this is a 17/18 year old or older book…NOT YA AT ALL!

MATURE READERS ONLY!

So lets start with the books in the series. They are…..

  • Angels’ Blood
  • Archangel’s Kiss
  • Archangel’s Consort
  • Archangel’s Blade (side story with one of the main characters)
  • Archangel’s Storm (side story with another one of the main characters)
  • Archangel’s Legion
  • Archangel’s Shadows (comes out in November 2014!!!! Another side story)

Click here to see the covers and read the descriptions of the stories on Nalini Singhs website.

Okay ~ So now it is time for my serious fangirling review.

This is currently my favorite series out there by a LONGGGG way. I found this story on one of the romance shelves in B&N and I was interested so I bought it. I thought it would be stupid romance or something like that. Boy was I SOOOO wrong. This is one of the most detailed love stories I have read by a modern writer. The romance was a small part on the side. Well…it was a massive part of the story, but there was so much going on that it played only a small role in the overall story.

The character development in this story was absolutely massive. The characters developed drastically from book to book, or in the side books, over the course of the entire book. Some characters personalities flip-flop, or do 180’s…or even a 360. Most romance novels has the main female character fall for a man and it was just all head over heels after that.

This honestly catered to all the different types of tastes out there. There was romance, hatred, betrayal, violence and just so much going on.

I will say that the violence was very graphic though. It was like written, “The blood coated the walls.” It would have been something like, “The blood pattern on the walls indicated that there had been a massive fight, the crimson droplets adding a chilling quality to the already dull room. The corpse on the floor, which was mutilated beyond recognition, was the other indication that the fight had been brutal and someone had clearly lost.” (No duh, I was just making some junk up for this.)Now…it would have gone into detail about the corpse in great detail…so if you aren’t into violence and such like that..then this may not be for you because it was a very large part of the story.

Since this series is so long and complex, you really get attached to the characters really fast. Each character is connected to another one and they pop up here and there throughout each of the stories, with some of the minor characters in the main series of books, getting books to themselves (like Dimitri and Jason). I really liked that because you got to know the character as one type of person in one book, but in their individual novel, you saw who they truly were and it changed your perception on them as you understood where certain actions came from and why their personality was as it was.

Honestly I loved the series and I recommend that you read it but please over the age of 17/18 as otherwise it is quite inappropriate.

Otherwise happy reading!

My “To Read” List

Well this is what I just picked up from the library, including NEW books. So feel free to read along with me and expect reviews of these books popping up here and there.

Must Love Dukes by Elizabeth Michels (got to love a good romance novel)

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman (for school)

Dangerous by Shannon Hale (New!…and I LOVE the cover.)

The Watch That Ends The Night: Voices from the Titanic by Allan Wolf (Love the Titanic..so it was a must!)

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (My reach book…I CAN DO THIS!)

Just Something Interesting

So I’ve been quiet for a little while (since my most recent post about being more active) as I was away in California at a summer institute. While I was there, I was given the opportunity to visit the FOX lot. It was Sunday, so it was dead quiet, but I still got to walk around, saw famous peoples parking spaces, fancy buildings, and different filming studios.

But that wasn’t what interested me the most (oddly enough). It was the ‘Give a Book, Get a Book’ (not the Disney Junior thing) stand by one of the buildings. I have come across this system in quite a few places before but seeing it here was…shocking. What it is, is there is a drop box, where you can go and get a book, read it, and then return it so others can read it. It saves time for someone to purchase a book that they may never read again. But one can also donate their own books into it so that other can read them when there are no uses for it anymore, instead of people throwing it away (yes…people throw books away and don’t DONATE them! Disgusting :( )

One book may pass through hundreds of hands!

It’s the perfect way for people to be motivated to read, but not have the pressure of having to buy a book and the guilt of purchasing a book and not reading it.

I honestly LOVE this idea and think that it should be implemented in more places. I see it happen more often in small communities and now on larger lots.

What do you, my readers, think of this type of idea? Do you think that it possibly may encourage reading or do you think that it would just be easier to go and purchase your own book and this type of thing is a waste of time? Be honest, I’m curious what people think.

But until then, happy reading!

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

“Her mission was to kill him. Her destiny was to love him.”

Summary

“Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom – all because of a reckless bargain her father struck. And since birth, she had been training to kill him.

Betrayed by her family yet bound to obey, Nyx rails against her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, she abandons everything sh’s ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, disarm him, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.

But Ignifex is not what Nyx expected. the strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle – a shifting maze of magical rooms – enthralls her. As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex’s secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. But even if she can bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him?

Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change out destiny.”

- From the inside flap

Summary

This was quite an interesting book. The title was what caught me to start with because it was kind of an oxymoron ~ Cruel Beauty. Also it was a nice red color and red always catches my attention. The other part was that it was on the New YA shelf and I love reading new books ~ Fresh material is always fabulous.

The story looked amazing and it was quite good but I didn’t love it as much as I thought I would. I don’t know what it was about it…but I didn’t really like the writing style. It was in first person and for some reason, I seem to have gone off stories that go for first person.

Also I felt the writing in the story was very choppy. The sentences were extremely short and there wasn’t much descriptive language. Ever since I started to write on my own, my perception of books and writing has changed. I am not saying that I am an amazing writing by any means, but I have become more observant to different writing styles and descriptive language.

Maybe it was just me, maybe it was because I’m reading more adult books and getting out of the YA section, or maybe it was just this book, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought because of the reasons stated above.

The story was quite interesting; kind of having this Matrix/Inception feel to it and it was really creative and a very creative ending.

A lot of people, I feel, would really love this book as it brings in the demon aspect and there are a lot of angel, demon, vampire and other supernatural creature types of books out there and coming out right now; that was one of the reasons I picked it up in the first place.

This was a quick and easy read and I do suggest that you check it out because it was a good book, just not MY kind of book.

If you read it, tell me what you think. And enjoy!