‘Paper Towns’ by John Green

‘The thing about Margo Roth Speigelman is that really all I could ever do was let her talk, and then when she stopped talking encourage her to go on, due to the facts that 1. I was incontestably in love with her, and 2. she was absolutely unprecedented in every way, and 3. she never really asked me any questions…’

Quentin Jacobson has always loved Margo from afar. So when she climbs through his window to summon him on an all-night road trip of revenge he cannot help but follow. But the next morning, Q turns up at school and Margo doesn’t. She’s left clues to her disappearance, like a trail of breadcrumbs for Q to follow.

And everything leads to one unavoidable question. 

This was the first John Green book I’ve read and because of how popular he is as an author and his massive fan base, I thought I should give one of his books 18742111_10210386098342835_216993488_na try. I chose this one because it was the one that my sister owned and therefore the easiest to get my hands on. After watching ‘A Fault in our Stars’ and building an opinion of John Green as someone who writes extremely emotional books, I was glad that this one wasn’t too heart-breaking. I really enjoyed the way that Green uses this book to question society and the way in which we live our lives, especially through his use of metaphors. A favourite theme of mine, and one of the main ones of the novel, was the invisible strings that are within us all that can get tighter and tighter. When discovering the body of a man who has committed suicide, Quentin describes how the strings within him had snapped. The writing Green uses is really beautiful, almost like poetry. One of my favourite lines from the book is this:

“I mean, at some point, you gotta stop looking up at the sky, or one of these days, you’ll be  back down and see that you floated away, too”

I also really enjoyed how the book progressed and defied expectations. (*SPOILERS* I was annoyed at first with the way in which Q idolised and seemingly worshipped Margot and thought that the whole book was just going to become a boy chasing after a girl, like any other cliched teen romance. Therefore I was glad when it turned into a message of how it is dangerous to idolise people and expect too much of them because after all people are just people, they are all made of paper, and you have to read them and understand them rather than throwing your own story upon them.)

As a recent literature graduate, the only fault I can pick with the book is that there is a lot of analysis of literature, especially of Whitman poetry, for a reader who has spent the last three years of her life doing nothing but that. However this is a personal problem and not really an issue at all – it just brought back memories of late night study sessions hunched over a poem that I have stared at for hours without being able to make any sense of it.

HOOKABILITY: 7/10 – It took me a bit longer than usual to read this book, probably just because I had a lot going on but there were occasional places that dragged slightly. However the mystery of (*SPOILER* finding Margot) added to the book’s excitement and made me impatient to discover the answers to the puzzles left behind.

CHARACTERS: 9/10 – I really enjoyed the three main characters – Q, Radar and Ben – and their relationships within the text. I found them funny and they worked really well along side one another – they were all unique and easily distinguishable as characters, yet all were extremely believable just like three best friends you would find together in real life. The only character that I was frustrated at was Margot, but this was part of her creation as a dangerous person to be friends with, playing her games with the other characters, especially Q, who I just wanted her to leave him alone so he could get on with his life.

OVERALL EMOTION: 7/10 – The beginning of the book, where the characters find the body of the man who committed suicide (not really a spoiler – it happens on the first page), I found to be extremely emotional. The other part of the text which I suppose was meant to be emotional, the ending, I was just relieved by. I was happy that both Q and Margot had found a middle ground where they finally understood each other and appreciated each other as people rather than idols that they have created in their minds. I also found the book extremely funny, even laughing out loud on a few occasions.

Recommended if you like:

  • Deep readings of modern day society
  • Awkward teen characters
  • Coming of age fiction
  • Mystery and clues to be solved
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I’m Back!

So after a very long break from blogging I’ve decided it’s about time I make my return. A lot has happened recently (including me starting my journey into Secondary English teaching). I also hit a bit of a block in terms of my reading. I was struggling to get into the books I was reading whereas normally I could just sit and read massive chunks at a time. It didn’t help that I was struggling a bit after leaving Uni with finding a job and knowing what I wanted to do with my life. My mind was a bit crowded so I didn’t have the right mindset for sitting with a book as I was getting easily distracted by other things.

However I’m happy to say that I’m back to reading again and back to studying books again. I just got a job helping GCSE and A Level students with their English but the curriculum has changed completely since I was at school four years ago. The most tragic loss is that they’re not allowed to teach ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ any more! They do Dickens now instead and I definitely know which I prefer 😛 So at the moment it’s back to Austen and Shakespeare. I’m actually finding that having the studying to do helps me feel more motivated and productive in every aspect of my life. I like having a purpose again and the beginnings of a routine since leaving university. It’s probably a big part of me wanting to blog again. The only trouble is finding the balance between studying books and reading for pleasure because I think it is really important that the latter is not forgotten. It can be really easy to get bored of reading if it’s a text you read because you have to rather than you want to. 

One book which I read recently which I have to mention, and will get a blog post soon, is ‘The Hate U Give’. There’s a lot of discussion surrounding this text recently because of it being made into a film and I thought it was superb. It was so well written and was so down to earth. It stood out to me from other books surrounding race because it was so down to earth. It wasn’t political and there was no feeling of detachment from what was happening. She was an ordinary girl and it just showed you her life and how she got caught in the middle of a fight. 

Other books I’ve read recently are ‘Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index’, which was a sweet little story and ‘The House’, which was a very creepy thriller. They will both get reviews soon as well as some others. I’m currently reading ‘Can you Keep a Secret’ by Karen Perry which is goo so far. I probably won’t write reviews for every book I read because I tried that last time and I was too slow with writing and ended up with a backlog and by the time I got round the reviewing a book it wasn’t fresh in my mind and I had forgotten some of the important stuff I had to say. I’m going to try and keep things a bit mixed up as well, which means trying other things as well as reviews. 

‘Miss You’ – Kate Eberlen

GoodreadsImage result for Miss you bookTess and Gus are meant to be. They just haven’t met properly yet. And perhaps they never will . . .

Today is the first day of the rest of your life is the motto on a plate in the kitchen at home, and Tess can’t get it out of her head, even though she’s in Florence for a final, idyllic holiday before university. Her life is about to change forever – but not in the way she expects.

Gus and his parents are also on holiday in Florence. Their lives have already changed suddenly and dramatically. Gus tries to be a dutiful son, but longs to escape and discover what sort of person he is going to be.

For one day, the paths of an eighteen-year-old girl and boy criss-cross before they each return to England.

Over the course of the next sixteen years, life and love will offer them very different challenges. Separated by distance and fate, there’s no way the two of them are ever going to meet each other properly . . . or is there?

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miss you.jpgReading this it felt very much like ‘One Day’ by David Nicholls, which isn’t a bad thing if that’s what you’re into. It was a cute story but it was missing some excitement. But maybe that is saying more about me and my taste in books than about the story itself. Maybe I just don’t like cutesy romance stories, because that is definitely how I would summarise it. I was given it by my mum as it is not the type of book I would immediately go for.

However, that being said, I did like the characters and their stories. I enjoyed reading about their little lives and how they kept almost meeting but not quite. About how they met other people and got on with their lives, all whilst the reader is silently screaming at them to just chat to that guy taking your photo or just say hello to the girl at the wedding! Oh the joys of dramatic irony.

There were also real moments of tenderness and emotion in the book which did touch me and I did get emotional at parts. (It may have had something to do with the fact I was recovering from anaesthetic). It really sold the idea of people’s lives intertwining and also the idea of living life to the fullest and not missing the little moments. Tess’ relationship with her sister is especially touching and watching how it grows and changes over the course of the novel is lovely to read. It truly is a documentary of life and what is happening to the people around us. Everyone has a different story to tell.

As much as I was touched by Tess’ story, I was infuriated by Gus’ and just couldn’t understand some of the choices he made. Actually maybe I did understand them but was frustrated at him for making them against the obvious moral choice. It was nice to have the lives of such different people because it really was an opposite ends of the spectrum situation.

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Although this is not the type of book I would usually go for, it was cute and heart warming and I definitely don’t regret reading it. If you are looking for something real and true to life then this is the book to go for.  I normally go for something a bit darker for my escapism 😛 but that’s just me. It was enjoyable as a quick relaxing read.

‘In a Dark Dark Wood’ – Ruth Ware

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Image result for in a dark dark wood goodreadsIn a dark, dark wood

Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since Nora walked out of school one day and never went back.

There was a dark, dark house

Until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s hen do arrives. Is this a chance for Nora to finally put her past behind her?

And in the dark, dark house there was a dark, dark room

But something goes wrong. Very wrong.

And in the dark, dark room…. 

Some things can’t stay secret for ever.

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36233518_10213308036429461_6751372222020976640_nI had heard some pretty mixed reviews about this book before I read it so I was surprised by how great I thought it was. I loved the setting of the hen party hidden away in a cabin in the woods. For a thriller I think it worked really well as you had all the typical tropes like being isolated with no way of contacting anyone outside as there is no service. The hen party worked well because a lot of the characters are strangers to each other so we are learning things about their past as the characters are. And a lot of them have secrets.

The other characters as well were especially creepy and suspicious and I honestly did not expect the ending, although a lot of people say they did. The story is split between Nora in hospital recovering from an accident and her flashbacks to the hen party weekend as she tries to remember what happened. I think this worked really well in terms of building up tension as both plot lines work towards the big finale.

The fact that you, the reader, are discovering what happened at the same time as Nora is remembering it builds a stronger connection as you are reacting at the same time as she is and often with the same shock. The only thing that disconnected me from her slightly was her obsession with James and their break up from however many years ago, which I didn’t really understand. However it was necessary for the plot line and it added to the emotions of the narrative.

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I would definitely recommend this book to any fans of creepy thrillers and I really enjoyed it. I enjoyed it so much that I went on to buy two more of her books; ‘The woman in Cabin 10’ and ‘The lying Game’. I didn’t enjoy the former as much but it was still pretty good and I haven’t yet read the latter. Keep an eye out for my reviews of those if you’re also a Ruth Ware fan.

Meaningless Destruction – Shannan Mitchener

I haven’t reviewed poetry yet on my blog and so I thought it would be something new and interesting to share with all of you.

‘Meanngless Desturction’ is a stunningly beautiful and heartfelt collection of poems. I didn’t know anything about the collection when I started reading apart from its name so I had o idea of the kind of journey it would take me on. Although it is a book of seperate poems thay all link together and tell a story.

The first few poems were beautiful; all about falling for a person and the feelings of being in love. An innocent love that is nothing but happiness. It then slowly changes into something a lot more raw and bare, written in such an exceptional way. I have to say I really felt a connection with the speaker and the pain that she was going through. There were so many poems that struck a chord with me because they are so personal and the imagery used by Shannan Mitchener really makes you feel the emotions of the poem in a very deep and personal way. There were many times where I knew exactly what she was talking about because I have had the exact same feeling. Other times, even though I had not experienced the things she was discussing, I could feel her pain.

The imagery really is incredible. It tells its own story in the way that it changes over time. As the speaker spirals down the imagery becomes darker, but this does not take away from its beauty.

The name ‘Meaningless Destruction’ is the name of one of the poems within the collection, one about anger and people’s actions when they’re angry, but it was also very well chosen as the title of the piece. There are many ways to interpret the ‘destruction’ within the text. Her life is being destroyed by this person in her life but also there is a sense of self-destruction, which she cannot seem to control as she is stuck on a loop.

All in all this book was a very heart-felt and emotional piece of writing, dealing with some very real and terrible issues that need to be faced. I would recommend it to anyone. I was planning to read a few poems every day but once I get swept away on the journey I ended up reading the hole thing in one sitting.

The Girlfriend – Michelle Frances

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Image result for the girlfriendThe addictive Number One bestselling thriller, perfect for fans of Into the Water.

A girl. A boy. His mother. And the lie she’ll wish she’d never told.

The Girlfriend by Michelle Frances is a gripping and chilling debut psychological thriller, based on the fall-out following an unforgiveable lie. It looks at the potentially charged relationship between girlfriend, boyfriend and his mother, which most women can identify with, and locates it in an extreme but believable setting.

Laura has it all. A successful career, a long marriage to a rich husband, and a twenty-three year-old son, Daniel, who is kind, handsome, and talented. Then Daniel meets Cherry. Cherry is young, beautiful and smart but she hasn’t had the same opportunities as Daniel. And she wants Laura’s life.

Cherry comes to the family wide-eyed and wants to be welcomed with open arms, but Laura suspects she’s not all that she seems.

When tragedy strikes, an unforgiveable lie is told. It is an act of desperation, but the fall-out will change their lives forever.

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‘The Girlfriend’ is one of those books that has you making up endings yourself before you’ve even read the first 100 pages. From the beginning I thought I could see where it was going and then it would surprise me. Frances is really talented at creating a sense of tension and creating a build up so you know something is coming but you don’t know what (or you think you do but something completely different happens).

I felt like the book started fairly slow and took a while to get going. The blurb talks about a lie but it is a long way through the book until that lie actually occurs. However I do understand that the background was needed to build up to it and to help explain why it occurs. It means that the reader has more sympathy for the person that tells the lie because it is a pretty awful lie to tell, even more so without any context.

The character of Cherry was incredibly well written. She is manipulative and paranoid in a way which makes the reader hate her but also I could not get enough of her. I needed to know what was going through her mind at all times and what she was going to do next because it was constantly something unexpected and crazy.

The ending of the book was incredibly tense and gripping but I do feel like more could have been done with it. It was very swift and everything was just over very quickly. The big finale should have been longer with a bigger focus on what was going through the characters minds.

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As I have said this book was slow in places, taking a while to kick off and having moments where I was waiting for things to happen. However I was very aware that something was going to happen and that tension was there throughout. I have already passed this book on to several people as a recommendation. I am a big fan of psychological thrillers and my favourite part of this book was not knowing what Cherry was going to do next and getting an insight into her brain. I would definitely pass this on to anyone who is a fan of glossy thriller authors like Ruth Ware.

How to Hang a Witch – Adriana Mather

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How to Hang a Witch (Paperback)It’s the Salem Witch Trials meets Mean Girls in a debut novel from one of the descendants of Cotton Mather, where the trials of high school start to feel like a modern day witch hunt for a teen with all the wrong connections to Salem’s past.

Salem, Massachusetts is the site of the infamous witch trials and the new home of Samantha Mather. Recently transplanted from New York City, Sam and her stepmother are not exactly welcomed with open arms. Sam is the descendant of Cotton Mather, one of the men responsible for those trials and almost immediately, she becomes the enemy of a group of girls who call themselves The Descendants. And guess who their ancestors were?

If dealing with that weren’t enough, Sam also comes face to face with a real live (well technically dead) ghost. A handsome, angry ghost who wants Sam to stop touching his stuff. But soon Sam discovers she is at the center of a centuries old curse affecting anyone with ties to the trials. Sam must come to terms with the ghost and find a way to work with The Descendants to stop a deadly cycle that has been going on since the first accused witch was hanged. If any town should have learned its lesson, it’s Salem. But history may be about to repeat itself.

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32086022_10212998705696386_4322610027639603200_n.jpgThe coolest thing about this book is that the author is writing about her own descendent. I’m really into history and have always been intrigued by the idea of discovering that past and so I am really inspired by her using that as the basis for her novel. It makes it a lot more personal and a lot more real for the reader.

The story itself is very well thought out. It is a great mix of mystery and supernatural in a YA setting. I haven’t read a YA novel in a while, which is very unlike me, so it was nice to get back to that genre. YA is a safe choice for me as the tone always feels very reminiscent of my teenage years. The book has all the typical aspects of a YA novel, especially in terms of characters; you have the strong-willed outcast protagonist and the love triangle with the homely boy-next-door and the dark and mysterious boy. There are also the cliquey girls at school that seem to have it out for Sam. However the book is more than just that, which is mostly down to the mystery side of it. There are many clever twists and questions throughout the book which keep the reader hooked. The final twist is truly unexpected and really shocked me.

As a protagonist I really liked Sam. She never fell into the damsel-in-distress category and is able to look out for herself, even if sometimes she didn’t need to. She’s fiercely independent and even though this made her had to bond with and hard to get close to for the other characters in the book, I found myself really liking her, even if sometimes I didn’t agree with her decisions to push certain people away.

Salem is a great setting for a novel because it has so much history and the events that took place there were so devastating. It is important to keep people aware of what happened there and so it is good to have a story which deals with those events which is targeted at the younger generations. I think Adriana Mather deals really well with not losing the true story in with the fiction. It is clear she did her research for this book and so it is interesting because of its recounting of true events, not just the great plot.

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I would recommend this book to anyone who is into YA fantasy but also anyone who is just interested in the Salem witch trials and what went on at that time in history. The mixture of historical drama and the contemporary setting work really well to bring the two worlds together and show the relevance of what happened. The recreation of the witch trials in the book is poignant to today’s society as there are many examples of how groups of people are being singled out through no fault of their own, be it fear or whatever reason. That is another reason why it is important that history is remembered in this way; so that it doesn’t repeat itself.

The Seven 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle – Stuart Turton

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35967101How do you stop a murder that’s already happened?

At a gala party thrown by her parents, Evelyn Hardcastle will be killed–again. She’s been murdered hundreds of times, and each day, Aiden Bishop is too late to save her. Doomed to repeat the same day over and over, Aiden’s only escape is to solve Evelyn Hardcastle’s murder and conquer the shadows of an enemy he struggles to even comprehend–but nothing and no one are quite what they seem.

Deeply atmospheric and ingeniously plotted, The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle is a highly original debut that will appeal to fans of Kate Atkinson and Agatha Christie.

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This book was a real page-turner because of its mystery and puzzles. Due to the way the plot twists and turns and overlaps it is very important that you concentrate when reading this book, like with any murder mystery. Like you would expect of the genre there are a lot of small pieces of information and clues that need to be remembered and picked up upon.

The best thing about this book is that the protagonist has just as much information about what is going on as the reader does. He has no memory of who he is or how he got to be at this big house with all of these strange and mysterious people. Therefore we are discovering everything at the exact same time as he is. I really liked that as a plot device because we have a chance to solve the crime as he is solving it himself. It also means that the plot begins right in the thick of the action, as there is no context to be explained. The fact that he wakes up with no knowledge of his environment or the people around him also plays on the idea of trust; who can you trust when everyone around you knows you but you don’t know them, or in fact don’t know yourself? Do they know what is happening and therefore are trying to trick you? Or are they a genuine friend and ally but you don’t remember them.

There are so many twists in this book, most of them truly unexpected. You expect the plot to be going in a certain direction and all of a sudden it takes a completely different path and gives you yet another mystery that needs to be solved. All in all there is a lot going on and a lot of questions to answer but the ending wraps everything up very nicely. There is nothing worse than a mystery with an unresolved ending.

The fact that every day the protagonist is in a new body also had a really interesting effect on the narrative. It was cool to see how the different types of people and their bodies affected the progress of the protagonist; they each had their limitations but also their benefits in terms of helping to solve the murder.

The ending was a lot different from a typical murder because the final discovery is not just who the murderer was but also why has the protagonist been placed in this situation and what is the bigger picture. The ending was superb. It was so well written and well thought-out. It genuinely shocked me.

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I would definitely recommend this to any fan of the murder mystery genre so they can experience a whole new take on it. It can get slightly confusing and complicated in places. But the kind of confusing where you are meant to go ‘What is going on here?’ and it all comes together later on (like the beginning of a Black Mirror episode). But it is really something original, well in terms of what I have read anyway. I really loved it and am looking out for similar things because of it so if anyone has any recommendations of something similar let me know.

The Girls – Emma Cline

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Image result for the girls emma clineNorthern California, during the violent end of the 1960s. At the start of summer, a lonely and thoughtful teenager, Evie Boyd, sees a group of girls in the park, and is immediately caught by their freedom, their careless dress, their dangerous aura of abandon. Soon, Evie is in thrall to Suzanne, a mesmerizing older girl, and is drawn into the circle of a soon-to-be infamous cult and the man who is its charismatic leader. Hidden in the hills, their sprawling ranch is eerie and run down, but to Evie, it is exotic, thrilling, charged—a place where she feels desperate to be accepted. As she spends more time away from her mother and the rhythms of her daily life, and as her obsession with Suzanne intensifies, Evie does not realize she is coming closer and closer to unthinkable violence, and to that moment in a girl’s life when everything can go horribly wrong.

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‘The Girls’ was incredibly addictive – I just couldn’t put it down. It draws you in at the very beginning and I couldn’t let go of it, despite its growing darkness and sinister nature, sort of like the character herself, Evie.

 

the girls - emma cline

The book is based on the Charles Manson affair, which occurred in 1969. I was vaguely aware of what happened in terms of him being a horrible man that created a cult where he made young women do horrible things, but not really the details of what took place. In this novel Emma Cline manages to show how easy it is for a young girl to get drawn into the promises of a great new life with a family of other girls which are in the same situation as she is. At home it looks like her parents are going to send her off to boarding school and so to Evie this is a chance of escape from that, and a chance for true freedom and independence. Young girls all think they are a lot more mature than they really are and that they should be treated as such, and this book plays on that feeling. Evie sees herself as becoming a young women on the farm, which she is as it is a coming of age novel, yet that maturation is much darker than a simple growing up story. She is unwittingly led into a world in which she is forced to grow up and her childhood is stolen from her before she even realises what is happening. And by then it is too late.

As the book is narrated by Evie, and you see her world through her eyes, you, as the reader, are also drawn in by the seemingly glamorous nature of the girls at the beginning but yet you quickly see what her adventure with them is going to lead to long before she does. This dramatic irony adds tension to the novel as you are begging her to walk away from it all yet you can’t help being captured when she doesn’t, wanting to know what is going to happen next.

The only comment I could make against the novel is that the grown up voice of middle-aged Evie looking back could have been made stronger. It fell slightly flat for me but could have worked really well if more attention had been paid to her. She isn’t referred to enough for it to affect the story and plot line.

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I don’t know if enjoyed is the right word to use in relation to this book because of its subject matter but I was definitely captured by it; like I said it is extremely addictive and gets to the heart of something which many people don’t have much knowledge of, but something that is a very real occurrence.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman

GoodreadsImage result for eleanor oliphant is completely fine

No one’s ever told Eleanor that life should be better than fine.

Meet Eleanor Oliphant: She struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. Nothing is missing in her carefully timetabled life of avoiding social interactions, where weekends are punctuated by frozen pizza, vodka, and phone chats with Mummy.

But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office. When she and Raymond together save Sammy, an elderly gentleman who has fallen on the sidewalk, the three become the kinds of friends who rescue one another from the lives of isolation they have each been living. And it is Raymond’s big heart that will ultimately help Eleanor find the way to repair her own profoundly damaged one.

Soon to be a major motion picture produced by Reese Witherspoon, Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine is the smart, warm, and uplifting story of an out-of-the-ordinary heroine whose deadpan weirdness and unconscious wit make for an irresistible journey as she realizes. . .

The only way to survive is to open your heart.

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People often use the term ’emotional rollercoaster’ when describing books. I think that term can get over-used because this is the first book I have read in a while that has dealt with the emotional extremities so well. This is evidenced by the fact that I haven’t found a book to be so funny yet so sad in a long time. I read this book whilst spending a few days in hospital (nothing serious) and it was great for getting my mind off of everything going on. It is extremely quirky yet also very real.

The main character, Eleanor Oliphant, is a character that definitely grew on me as the story went on, which makes sense as it is about her own self-discovery and self-realisation. Her social reactions to other people were frustrating as she wants to shut herself off from the world. The great thing about this book is that I think as the reader is gaining more affection towards her, she is also gaining more affection for herself and, because of that, for the people around her. That is what makes the story so heart-warming, because you are truly going on the same journey as Eleanor.

[SPOILER]: The book also handled the topic of mental illness very well. I hate when a book romanticises mental illness or, to the other extent, shies away from discussing the topic in too much detail. This book manages to give a very true insight into the brain of someone struggling to cope with a mental illness and how she manages to pull herself out of her darkest days, with the help of Raymond. I think it is a really important message to look out for the people that are struggling around you. The character of Raymond shows the importance of kindness and support. Goodreads (2)

All in all, I really loved reading this book, and would definitely recommend it. There are some extremely sad parts of this book, but also some genuine laugh-out-loud moments, which together make it a really heart-warming read.

 

The Wicked Finale : ‘Out of Oz’ by Gregory Maguire

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Image result for out of oz

Oz is knotted with social unrest: The Emerald City is mounting an invasion of Munchkinland, Glinda is under house arrest, the Cowardly Lion is on the run from the law, and Dorothy is back. Amid chaos and war, Elphaba’s green granddaughter born at the end of “Son of a Witch”, comes of age. Rain will take up her broom, and bring the series to a close.

 

 

 

 

 

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So it finally came to an end with this final book of the series. It was definitely an adventure. I must say if you’re interested in reading these books I have to warn you it is definitely an investment. They are very intense with a lot of deep theological aspects. However if you’re looking for something to challenge you and make you think, these are the books for that. Having finished them all I have to say that I feel like I have achieved something.

The last book was a good closure to the series and wrapped everything nicely. I started to feel in the third book, and even slightly in the second book, that the story was going off on a bit of a tangent, but a lot of questions were answered in the last book and it returned to parts of the previous book that had seemed abandoned. It was all very Dirk Gently with the ‘everything’s connected’ trope.

Like I’ve said in previous reviews of this series, I love the way that Maguire plays with the characters from ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and flips them on their head. In this book Dorothy is made to be so quaint and naive it’s annoying. She is the exact same character from her original story yet it is played in a completely different way. The same thing is done with Glinda. It is like we are given a glimpse into their lives behind the curtain. It is like in ‘The Wizard of Oz’ they were playing up to the cameras and in these books they are their true selves and we get to see their faults. The only thing I wish was examined even more is the relationship between Glinda and Elphaba.

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I have kept this review relatively short because it is my first one back in a while and also I have already written reviews for the other books in the series so a lot of what I have to say has already been said and I don’t want to repeat myself too much. Here are my other reviews if you want to take a look:

Wicked – Gregory Maguire

Sunday Review: ‘Son of a Witch’ – Gregory Maguire (The Wicked Years #2)

Inside the Mind of the Cowardly Lion: ‘A Lion Among Men’ by Gregory Maguire

Just to reiterate I did enjoy this series and how clever Maguire is with his writing and character insight. However like I said before it is intense and definitely a commitment. But if you have the time on your hands and are looking for a theological challenge, I definitely recommend it.