“The Lord of the Radch has given Breq command
of the ship Mercy of Kalr and sent her to the only place she would have agreed
to go -- to Athoek Station, where Lieutenant Awn's sister works in
Athoek was annexed some six hundred years ago, and by now everyone is fully
civilized -- or should be. But everything is not as tranquil as it appears. Old
divisions are still troublesome, Athoek Station's AI is unhappy with the
situation, and it looks like the alien Presger might have taken an interest in
what's going on. With no guarantees that interest is benevolent.”
this one really difficult to get through.
It’s rather boring actually. It’s not bad, just boring and I was never really
stimulated to get on with reading it.
is very simple (again), not really exciting and so, so slow. There’s an overly
simple plot but it’s not considered that important and the narrative thread is
Ancillary Sword has even less action then Justice. It’s more focused on its
morality and message then on something (anything) happening.
The world building made this a better novel though. There are lots of details
and history and I like that in SFF. But it’s never really descriptive, just
here and there a bit and I want more.
Breq is an
admirable character. She does what she believes is right, without regard for propriety
Her ability to read even the tiniest flicker of emotion on someone’s face is a
bit over-reaching in my opinion. She’s not human and she can’t see every tiny
glance. But she apparently knows everything that goes on in a human’s mind.
You do feel how lonely she is throughout the novel.
But she is too perfect to make me really care for her. She always knows exactly
what to do, she’s so moral and just, she never falters or makes mistakes. It
aggravated me to be honest.
knowing more about the annexation and the troubles it brings for the different
peoples and societies as Breq experiences it. Politics and the inner workings
of a society always interest me in SFF. But the scope here is so small. Breq
talks and talks about the whole Empire, but all we see is this tiny,
unimportant station. Problems in the Empire are mentioned throughout the novel,
but it’s always in passing.
I missed Seivarden in this novel. I liked the interaction between Breq and
Seivarden in the previous novel.
different and not bad but not as special as many seem to think. Or that’s my
opinion at least.
Aching is a trainee witch — now working for the seriously scary Miss Treason.
But when Tiffany witnesses the Dark Dance — the crossover from summer to winter
— she does what no one has ever done before and leaps into the dance. Into the
oldest story there ever is. And draws the attention of the Wintersmith himself.
As Tiffany-shaped snowflakes hammer down on the land, can Tiffany deal with the
consequences of her actions? Even with the help of Granny Weatherwax and the
Nac Mac Feegle — the fightin’, thievin’ pictsies who are prepared to lay down
their lives for their big wee hag.”
this book so much.
pokes fun at some of the classic tropes in Fantasy like the god falling in love
with an earthly woman.
Miss Treason is another perfect example. I loved her even though she ‘scared’
me at first. But she’s so lovable (as most Discworld witches are), weird and a
strong female character in general. She knows that you cannot be a witch if
others don’t see you as one. So she decided a very long time ago to just play
If there is one thing we can never blame Pratchett for it’s a lack of strong
a brilliant character. She’s smart, willful, she knows what she wants, and
she’s brave, confident, competent and brassy.
The ‘love story’ of Tiffany and Roland made me smile in its innocence and their
denial of it.
Roland is clumsy, smart, sweet and funny. He’s an excellent match for Tiffany
and a great character even without her. And Pratchett still shows her as a
13-year old girl. He made me care so much for her.
Nanny Ogg and Granny Weatherwax (I want to be her when I grow old) make this
novel an absolutely amazing read. They are both spot on. They are ruthless as
always, a charming couple of witches, memorable, headstrong, smart and just
generally, truly incredible.
And how could I not mention the Nac Mac Feegle? They made me laugh so hard my
husband had to laugh about me laughing about the book.
Lastly, there’s Horace. You’ll have to see for yourselves what he/that’s about.
The plot is
good, solid, fast and unpredictable. Well, it’s Pratchett so you know it’s
going to be ok, but you so wonder sometimes. It’s full of action from start to
finish, it just doesn’t stop.
a bit of wisdom for the reader as well. There always is ‘stealth philosophy’ and
it’s never boring, meandering, blaming or harsh. He teaches us about superstition,
death, blame, responsibility, duty and the consequences of our actions.
engaging, the prose is easy, rich, without fluff and bright. The characters are
real, fully realized with merits and flaws, they grow, they are complex and
they are all my friends.
And it is filled to the brim with Pratchett’s typical sense of humor.
Natalie Waite longs to escape home for college. Her father is a domineering and
egotistical writer who keeps a tight rein on Natalie and her long-suffering
mother. When Natalie finally does get away, however, college life doesn’t bring
the happiness she expected. Little by little, Natalie is no longer certain of
anything—even where reality ends and her dark imaginings begin. Chilling and
suspenseful, Hangsaman is loosely based on the real-life disappearance of a
Bennington College sophomore in 1946.”
this novel enormously.
It’s very different and unique. The prose is absolutely beautiful, elegant and
it makes for a truly believable story. The atmosphere created is dark,
claustrophobic and haunting but not throughout.
is about the aftermath of trauma; what can happen after someone or something
changed you and your life. What happened is never explicitly stated nor dwelt upon
but it influences every sentence after.
It’s also about finding your place in the world, your part in it and figuring
out who you are.
This is my
review of my third time reading The Angel Maker by Stefan Brijs.
I obviously read it in Dutch because Stefan Brijs
is a Belgian writer but I do know this novel has been translated into English.
My copy has 429 pages and is actually my mother’s copy.
Last year I went to a lecture Stefan Brijs was giving in my hometown. I own De
Engelenmaker and Post voor mevrouw Bromley so I decided to bring them with me
to get them autographed. One for me and one for my mother whose books we forgot
to bring with us. So I gave her my signed copy of De Engelenmaker, I got her
copy instead and I now own a signed copy of Post voor mevrouw Bromley.
village of Wolfheim is a quiet little place until the geneticist Dr. Victor Hoppe
returns after an absence of nearly twenty years. The doctor brings with him his
infant children-three identical boys all sharing a disturbing disfigurement. He
keeps them hidden away until Charlotte, the woman who is hired to care for
them, begins to suspect that the triplets-and the good doctor- aren't quite
what they seem. As the villagers become increasingly suspicious, the story of
Dr. Hoppe's past begins to unfold, and the shocking secrets that he has been
keeping are revealed. A chilling story that explores the ethical limits of
science and religion, The Angel Maker is a haunting tale in the tradition of
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Frankenstein. Brought to life
by internationally bestselling author Stefan Brijs, this eerie tale promises to
get under readers' skin.”
it a lot. Not as much as the first or the second time though.
My guess is that the gossip and the weak-minded people are hitting too close to
home this time around.
The story is set in a small town where everyone knows everything about everyone
else. That makes for a lot of talking, spying and gossiping. And it feels
stifling. You get so caught up in it you can feel yourself growing as stupid
and foolish as them.
Hoppe is amazingly characterized. His determination is admirable. And what he
has to go through is tragic and you can totally understand how he came to be
the way he is without approving his deeds.
storytelling is very sharp, intelligent and to the point.
Brijs shows us how superstition, science and personal experience can all be a
part of one and the same person and how this can still make sense inside this
person’s head. Because it still does for Hoppe. And it’s amazing to watch his
reasoning and his thoughts.
Maker is well worth the read. The story is enormously engrossing; it just sucks
you up and doesn’t let you go until you have to go to sleep or until you’ve
finished the whole thing.
being flabbergasted the first time I read it and I found out what it was all
about. Obviously, I’m well beyond that now but it still is pretty awesome,
horrific, baffling and utterly amazing.
is about We by Yevgeny Zamyatin.
My copy has 203 pages story, 6 pages Introduction and 2 pages Translator’s Note.
“In the One
State of the great Benefactor, there are no individuals, only numbers. Life is
an ongoing process of mathematical precision, a perfectly balanced equation.
Primitive passions and instincts have been subdued. Even nature has been
defeated, banished behind the Green Wall. But one frontier remains: outer
space. Now, with the creation of the spaceship Integral, that frontier -- and
whatever alien species are to be found there -- will be subjugated to the
beneficent yoke of reason.
One number, D-503, chief architect of the Integral, decides to record his
thoughts in the final days before the launch for the benefit of less advanced
societies. But a chance meeting with the beautiful I-330 results in an
unexpected discovery that threatens everything D-503 believes about himself and
the One State. The discovery -- or rediscovery -- of inner space...and that
disease the ancients called the soul.”
We was written
in 1921 and it was a major influence on the two most well known dystopian
novels ever; 1984 and Brave New World.
Because I love both I felt like I needed to read this one too.
is a written record by our protagonist, D-503 (or D) like a diary with
scattered thoughts, disjointed sentences and random entries.
These entries feel very cold and detached and I didn’t really care about any of
the characters or the unfolding events.
I suppose that’s exactly what Zamyatin wanted us to feel like because it works
great for the story and the characters aren’t meant to be likeable.
The novel is slow going at first and hard to understand but if you keep going
it gets interesting.
protagonist, D, fully believes in the One State, he’s not the one with doubts
as in so many other novels. No, he is happy with his life and he actually,
truly believes in the system. He thinks like an indoctrinated mathematician. And
he keeps thinking like that throughout the novel. D is not the quintessential
rebel. I found this to be a very interesting and unusual point of view.
allows chaos and chaos is not a part of true happiness. Imagination and improvisation
are freedom and thus they are chaos.
One State is a completely machinelike, controlled society with no room for
individuality or any form of freedom. The glass houses are an example of this
In this One State there are only designations and numbers. This is a simple way
to dehumanize every person in this state. Can you imagine your life that way?
Theoretical happiness and complete health have made way for freedom.
recommended if you have an interest or a passion for Classics or Dystopian
Caroline Crale was convicted of poisoning her husband, but just like the
nursery rhyme, there were five other “little pigs” who could have done it:
Philip Blake (the stockbroker), who went to market; Meredith Blake (the amateur
herbalist), who stayed at home; Elsa Greer (the three-time divorcée), who had
her roast beef; Cecilia Williams (the devoted governess), who had none; and
Angela Warren (the disfigured sister), who cried all the way home.
Sixteen years later, Caroline’s daughter is determined to prove her mother’s
innocence, and Poirot just can’t get that nursery rhyme out of his mind.”
difficult to write reviews about a series where all the books are more or less
There’s always a murder. Poirot talks with the suspects at least two times.
After that he reveals to them when they are gathered together who murdered the
That’s the basic outline of every Christie novel.
is well-written, easy to read and funny at times. Sometimes I know who did it
before Poirot reveals it but even if I can’t always figure out how he or she
did it. So it is always pleasant and amusing to read these novels.
isn’t any different.
I liked it and I enjoyed it. For once I knew who did it, but not how.
It’s pure entertainment.
Inheritance is the first short stories collection by Robin Hobb and Megan Lindholm. Both are pseudonyms
used by Margaret Lindholm. She sees these two pseudonyms as very different
authors with a very distinct and not interchangeable writing style. Combining
their stories into one collection made me see these differences quite clearly
even though I’ve never read anything by Megan Lindholm.
I got this book at the Boekenfestijn and it has exactly 400 pages.
Inheritance & Other Stories is a marvelous new collection of short fiction
from New York Times bestselling master storyteller Robin Hobb—including tales
written under the pseudonym Megan Lindholm, by which the acclaimed fantasist
first began her illustrious writing career. Included in this essential volume
are Hugo and Nebula Award-nominated short masterworks, as well as brand new
tales and the never before published in the U.S. title story—a unique
compendium of wonders displaying the breathtaking skill, imagination, and
remarkably varied styles of both alter egos.”
collection includes the following stories:
as Megan Lindholm: A Touch of Lavender, Silver Lady and the Fortyish Man, Cut,
The Fifth Squashed Cat, Strays, Finis and Drum machine
as Robin Hobb: Homecoming, The Inheritance and Cat's meat
stories were a bit too short for me. I enjoyed them so much I wanted more of
them and I wanted them to slow down a bit because they were so fast paced and
sometimes shallow. These stories were more SF or urban in a recent setting.
Hobb’s stories were fantastical as are her novels and they were slower too,
which I liked.
liked this extremely descriptive collection. It’s very different from other
collections and Lindholm’s stories especially were unique in their setting. The
stories are very empowering, sad, moving and oddly triumphant.
I enjoyed it but the stories are too predictable and shallow to really love
staying with his Aunt Dahlia to help out in the election at Market Snodsbury,
Bertie Wooster comes up against the familiar horrors of Florence Craye, his
former fiancee, and Roderick Spode, head of the Black Shorts, in a plot tangle
from which, as usual, only the ingenuity of Jeeves can save him.”
I can just
see these scenes right before my eyes and hear the voices in my head. Wodehouse
has a very descriptive style.
The plot is a bit dull and weak but it’s also funny, full of coincidences and
Bertie is as sweet and funny as ever while stumbling through it all.
Jeeves is witty as usual.
And he has a first name! Breath people, don’t forget to breath.
I liked it;
this is perfect, easy to read entertainment.
novel is quite different from the ones before. There are more characters, more
action and it’s all a lot faster.
This is also the most complicated plot yet. It’s not as straight-forward as the
other ones and it has multiple interesting sidelines converging towards the end
of the novel.
is fast, action-packed and it doesn’t slow down. Towards the end when you start
counting the pages left and there aren’t a lot left you really start wondering
how the heck Butcher is going to fix it all.
I liked the story a lot.
setup feels very real. Butcher writes vividly and with a minimal of
over-the-top magic and the likes. Everything is grounded; every action, every
conversation and every creature/person has a reason for being in the novel. It’s
great world building throughout. It still feels as modern day Chicago, but just
a ‘bit’ different.
characters are all very well characterized. We even get to know the new ones
I must say I have a mixed relationship with Michael. He’s so much a godlover
that it’s funny, but he too righteous to stay funny. I’d had it with him after
a while and I was glad he wasn’t part of the whole novel so he could stay in my
Susan is a walking cliché.
But so is Harry in a way and I don’t mind him or I wouldn’t keep reading the
All in all, I like these characters and I can see this series going pretty much
Dresden’s views on women though. On the one hand he practically drools every time he sees a
woman and he can’t help himself thinking about her ass, her breasts or her
legs. And on the other hand he thinks every woman, no matter how bad or vicious
she is, is a damsel in distress. I hate it when writers do that. I would much
rather see Dresden killing a woman vampire then have him thinking that he
shouldn’t because she’s a woman.
absolutely huge Wrap Up.
This really is the only plus of having to rest because of my back problems.
There is nothing else you can do lying down but watching tv and reading.
So those are the things I did.
Now I’m ready to get back to work (for more than two days please) so my reading
will get back to normal.
I read 22
books for a total of 8997 pages. That’s 409 pages per book.