The Rook Review

Posted in the Genevieve Forum

Comments (Page 4)

Showing posts 61 - 80 of86
|
Go to last page| Jump to page:

“I'm just part of the problem!”

Since: Dec 07

Melbourne, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#61
Dec 10, 2009
 
genevieve wrote:
Rook review: The Tenth Gift
The Tenth Gift is the story of a young Cornish girl in the 17th century. Cat is a young maid at a manor who struggles with following her dreams versus pursuing her duty at following through on the expectations that are laid before her. Cat details her thoughts in a book of embroidery patterns that is unearthed and mistakenly given to a modern day woman Julia who is in the midst of a break up. As Julia reads the journal she learns of the tragic fate of Cat and her village as they are kidnapped by Moroccan pirate bound for slavery.
Now it is hard to discuss without giving away the the entire plot. The book is well written as it describes the reality of Cornwall and the splendor of morocco. The groundwork of the book is well laid out as it explores the themes of duty versus the heart and the difficulty in navigating and balancing this. This theme is throughout the book, however as the conclusion draws, i found that it rushed the outcome. all of the groundwork that was laid yet the decisions that the characters made in the end were not fully explored for my liking, i think that the author could have spent a bit more time on this as it felts as though far to much was implied when in fact this struggle would be at the core of someone's morality. The mirroring of the two woman's lives, while interesting i found it almost was a bit to much in the end as all the pieces of the puzzle fell into place. i found myself very much sympathizing with Cat's character, yet towards the end it seemed to wane somewhat.
now i sound harshly critical of this book, but i did truly enjoy it regardless!
It's good to see some Rooks being read and reviewed! I have done little reading as you know, since changing to my latest mode of commuting. Now I only read while travelling away for work, still wading through Angels Game. Can you believe it?

This was a wonderful review, not overly critical as the enjoyment of it came through. I want to read it, as I like these historical/modern parallels in the style of Labyrinth. Cornwall and Moroccan splendour sound awesome!

But as you know, I'm under a book-buying moratorium. As is the owner of the Rats of V, fortunately.

Hey it seems like I just reviewed your review! oh well. It was a good review.

“SAILING AND YACHTS,MOVIE EXTRA”

Since: Aug 08

VICKSBURG MS

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#62
Dec 10, 2009
 
Geneive did you read the book the girl with the dragon tatoo? Sounds like you did. I read it this past summer a trip book on the road; and it turned to be a terrific mystery. I'm waiting for the sequel to come out in paperback.
Right now I'm travelogue by Paul Theroux called the Ghost train to the Eastern Star. And the author goes back and travels on the trains he first traveled on is Asia over thirty years ago. In fact I read the Great Railway Bazaar before the eatern star sequel. What I liked about the Eastar Star Sequel he opened with his ride on the Eurostar which I rode to Paris Gare du Nord over 9 yrs ago. I would love to ride the Eurostar again. But Theroux is an interesting travel writer.

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#63
Dec 13, 2009
 
-David wrote:
<quoted text>
It's good to see some Rooks being read and reviewed! I have done little reading as you know, since changing to my latest mode of commuting. Now I only read while travelling away for work, still wading through Angels Game. Can you believe it?
This was a wonderful review, not overly critical as the enjoyment of it came through. I want to read it, as I like these historical/modern parallels in the style of Labyrinth. Cornwall and Moroccan splendour sound awesome!
But as you know, I'm under a book-buying moratorium. As is the owner of the Rats of V, fortunately.
Hey it seems like I just reviewed your review! oh well. It was a good review.
with your travels this week, i hope you can get a bit of reading done on The Angel's Game! I am eagerly looking forward to your review as your recommendation of The Shadow of the Wind is one of my top reads for 2009!

However with the moratorium on book buying, perhaps you could sneak The Screwtape Letters in undetected as it was only a recent recommendation!

I do think that you would enjoy the historical references and labyrinth of the story. It did detail the history of the corsairs and spoke a bit in reference to the true historical facts of the pirate raids at the end of the book.

The embroidery as well is almost a character in the book as it is a passion of Cat's, so reading about the richness of the designs and intricacies also contributed to the beautiful descriptive qualities in the book.

:)

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#64
Dec 13, 2009
 
Zal900 wrote:
Geneive did you read the book the girl with the dragon tatoo? Sounds like you did. I read it this past summer a trip book on the road; and it turned to be a terrific mystery. I'm waiting for the sequel to come out in paperback.
Right now I'm travelogue by Paul Theroux called the Ghost train to the Eastern Star. And the author goes back and travels on the trains he first traveled on is Asia over thirty years ago. In fact I read the Great Railway Bazaar before the eatern star sequel. What I liked about the Eastar Star Sequel he opened with his ride on the Eurostar which I rode to Paris Gare du Nord over 9 yrs ago. I would love to ride the Eurostar again. But Theroux is an interesting travel writer.
Unfortunately, i have not read the book about the girl with the dragon tattoo. The travel books sound quite good, i do enjoy books that take place in other cultures with rich descriptions of the places and sights. train travel is a wonder means of seeing the world and as a bit of a romantic quality i have always thought!

“Ignore the trolls”

Since: Oct 08

UK

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#65
Dec 13, 2009
 
genevieve wrote:
<quoted text>
Unfortunately, i have not read the book about the girl with the dragon tattoo. The travel books sound quite good, i do enjoy books that take place in other cultures with rich descriptions of the places and sights. train travel is a wonder means of seeing the world and as a bit of a romantic quality i have always thought!
Two for you on your next set of travels (not related to travel, but you might enjoy them)- Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow by Peter Hoeg (think that's how it's spelt) and David Gutherson's Snow Falling on Cedars - both great reads. By the way, don't forget to tell us of your last trip on the WHYB thread, unless you already have and I missed it.

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#66
Dec 13, 2009
 
tony1003 wrote:
<quoted text>
Two for you on your next set of travels (not related to travel, but you might enjoy them)- Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow by Peter Hoeg (think that's how it's spelt) and David Gutherson's Snow Falling on Cedars - both great reads. By the way, don't forget to tell us of your last trip on the WHYB thread, unless you already have and I missed it.
Ah Tony! I have not read Miss Smillas's Feeling for Snow. I just looked it up to see a bit what it is about and it does look interesting! Certainly just the few points I looked up about the Greenland Inuits and post-colonial Denmark's history make it sound very intriguing!
I have in fact read Snow Falling on Cedars a few years back. It was beautifully written and definitely focused on the descriptive elements and texture. I also found it interesting, the theme of the book and the anti-japanese sentiments that it focused on as they existed so vividly in the states only a few short years ago. i love that book! I believe I also shared it with David who has also since read it! Great recommendation Tony!

“Ignore the trolls”

Since: Oct 08

UK

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#67
Dec 13, 2009
 
genevieve wrote:
<quoted text>
Ah Tony! I have not read Miss Smillas's Feeling for Snow. I just looked it up to see a bit what it is about and it does look interesting! Certainly just the few points I looked up about the Greenland Inuits and post-colonial Denmark's history make it sound very intriguing!
I have in fact read Snow Falling on Cedars a few years back. It was beautifully written and definitely focused on the descriptive elements and texture. I also found it interesting, the theme of the book and the anti-japanese sentiments that it focused on as they existed so vividly in the states only a few short years ago. i love that book! I believe I also shared it with David who has also since read it! Great recommendation Tony!
It loses its way (in my humble opinion) a little in the last third), but it is still a great read. If you haven't tried Giles Foden's Last King of Scotland, can also recommend that (and not just because I taught the author in a past life).

“SAILING AND YACHTS,MOVIE EXTRA”

Since: Aug 08

VICKSBURG MS

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#68
Dec 14, 2009
 
By the way when Paul Theroux opened his chapter with the Eurostar,it was one of many trains I rode in Europe. From London to Paris it's like two and half hours. It's one train I want to ride again. When I was in Catalonia,Spain I rode trains from Sitges where I stayed to Gerona,to the north and to Terragona in the south. But I hope to ride the Eurostar again but this time from Paris to London.'
My real goal is to see Buneos Aires,Argentina and even visit the Russia Federation. By the way I wouldn't mind riding the Canadaian rails either.

“I'm just part of the problem!”

Since: Dec 07

Melbourne, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#69
Dec 15, 2009
 
genevieve wrote:
<quoted text>
with your travels this week, i hope you can get a bit of reading done on The Angel's Game! I am eagerly looking forward to your review as your recommendation of The Shadow of the Wind is one of my top reads for 2009!
However with the moratorium on book buying, perhaps you could sneak The Screwtape Letters in undetected as it was only a recent recommendation!
I do think that you would enjoy the historical references and labyrinth of the story. It did detail the history of the corsairs and spoke a bit in reference to the true historical facts of the pirate raids at the end of the book.
The embroidery as well is almost a character in the book as it is a passion of Cat's, so reading about the richness of the designs and intricacies also contributed to the beautiful descriptive qualities in the book.
:)
I'm glad to hear that Shadow was a highlight of your 2009 books! I hope to recommend Angel's Game before my trip is out, but now as I near the end, I have a pathological fear of finding myself sitting on a plane with nothing to read!

Hmmm. I wonder if Screwtape, or anything bY C.S. Lewis will fit the mould of an airport book shop, maybe not!

And Tony's Snow Falling on Cedars was a classic. As was the movie, incidentally. Not many movies do justice but that one did.

:)

“I'm just part of the problem!”

Since: Dec 07

Melbourne, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#70
Dec 18, 2009
 
The Angelís Game, Carlos Ruiz Zafonís second novel, has done a bit of travelling with me! My review might be coloured by the length of time I took to wade through this book, having stopped taking trains to work and my only reading time is when I travel, or on rare holidays. At times, it was hard to pick it up and get back into it. But I know Genevieveís been waiting for a while for my review... and what I offer is only my opinion of course. Others may like the book more, or less.

Itís in the same beautifully written style, every word and phrase chosen carefully, and you get the feeling of the same care taken in the translation to capture the colour of the language. Barcelona, the main characterís "city of the damned", becomes a vast panorama of sights, smells, light and shadow, grubby streets and more mysteries just around the corner, in the hands of this word-master. Every passage is light and dark, like a classical chiaroscuro painting. Listen to this, when the main character (writer, David Martin) moves into his (appropriately Gothic) tower-house, opens the window and looks for inspiration:

"The whole of Barcelona stretched out at my feet and I wanted to believe that its streets would whisper stories to me, secrets I could capture on paper and narrate to whoever cared to listen".

Iíll be careful not to give too much away about the story. But to highlight a few things (which you could glean from the back cover anyway), David Martin is stuck in a 20 year contract to pump out trashy crime thrillers under a false name, making his publishers rich in the process. He simultaneously turns out two novels in his spare time: one, under his own name, is roasted by critics as a flop, while the other, ghost-written for a rich friend, is hailed as a masterpiece. Donít you love Ruiz Zafonís dig at critics, pandering to fame and fortune rather than the quality of writing? haha!

David Martin finds a mysterious benefactor, a foreign publisher who offers a huge sum of money (and seemingly cures Martinís terminal illness) to write a novel that will create a "religion". When the publisher arranges an encounter for the young writer, in a setting that turns out to have been chronologically impossible (sorry, cryptic words, but Iím avoiding telling all the plot), you get to wondering about the supernatural powers of this publisher and whether the writer has entered into a pact with the Devil. I thought of the first paragraph of the book, and the price of his soul:

"A writer never forgets the first time he accepted a few coins ... for a story... A writer is condemned to remember that moment, because from then on, he is doomed and his soul has a price".

(continued)

“I'm just part of the problem!”

Since: Dec 07

Melbourne, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#71
Dec 18, 2009
 
(Part 2)

The book is part mystery-thriller and part love-story. The elaborate and intricate plot (or you might possibly say: too elaborate, and too many plots) centres around the dark mysteries of the tower-house and its previous resident, and the young writerís yearning for the beautiful and unattainable Cristina. As the writer delves into the mysteries and exposes himself to more danger by knowing too much, bodies start piling up, in a series of events that any outsider (including the police in the novel) might reasonably believe Martin to be responsible for.

All the time, we have this mysterious "boss", the rich Parisian publisher that nobody in the business has heard of, hounding Martin to finish the book he has commissioned.(Now, again without giving away too much), the tragic event that follows one characterís reading of the manuscript just adds to the mystery of both this publisher, and the book itself. The book I found myself really wanting to read was not The Angelís Game, but the manuscript of this strange fable written for the "boss" that sent one character to a tragic end!

The book moves from an early slow style of various intricacies, and making me wish it would hurry up a bit (maybe it was my slow reading of it), towards the latter part and the increasing body count, where I really was held in suspense not so much for a resolution to the mystery-thriller aspect of the story, but for the love-story aspect.

The strange and spooky epilogue gives that resolution, but in a way that leaves unresolved the true nature of the "boss" and his diabolical power, except to leave us in no doubt that heís not your average bloke, granting Martin one of his wishes but in a somewhat disturbing way. The ending is deeply moving, and links the story to Shadow of the Wind, and Daniel Sempereís beloved mother, and his fatherís grief over her loss. I finished it on the plane, and was glad of the remaining flight time to sit with eyes closed and just think of that ending.

This book does not measure up to Shadow of the Wind, in my opinion. The long, twisting story gave me the impression that the author had hit onto something, with Shadowís intricate layers of plots and sub-plots, and decided more of a good thing was an even better thing. It made for, at times, a bit of a difficult read. A mystery novel, about a mystery novelist, runs the risk of spiralling into ever decreasing circles; something which Ruiz Zafon keeps us from, a testament to his masterful language and gift for story-telling.
The quality of character development is something else which I should mention as a highlight, and probably surpasses Shadow. Not the least of which are the feisty, interesting and ultimately lovable Isabella, and old Sempere.

If you liked Shadow of the Wind, you absolutely have to read this book. Read it, but donít expect a second Shadow, and then you wonít be disappointed.

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#72
Dec 30, 2009
 
tony1003 wrote:
<quoted text>
It loses its way (in my humble opinion) a little in the last third), but it is still a great read. If you haven't tried Giles Foden's Last King of Scotland, can also recommend that (and not just because I taught the author in a past life).
I have put it on my list! I did though get an e-reader for christmas so my list has gotten quite long, I already have downloaded 5 books i think. now i have to stop downloading and start reading!!

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#73
Dec 30, 2009
 
-David wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm glad to hear that Shadow was a highlight of your 2009 books! I hope to recommend Angel's Game before my trip is out, but now as I near the end, I have a pathological fear of finding myself sitting on a plane with nothing to read!
Hmmm. I wonder if Screwtape, or anything bY C.S. Lewis will fit the mould of an airport book shop, maybe not!
And Tony's Snow Falling on Cedars was a classic. As was the movie, incidentally. Not many movies do justice but that one did.
:)
haha, maybe not an airport book shop, but i can assure you i have downloaded it already. now i have everything set up, except one small glitch. i can't move my downloaded books to the reader, something to do with my Adobe. errr. perhaps because it was a pirated copy I can't get it to authenticate. dang it!

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#74
Dec 30, 2009
 
-David wrote:
The Angelís Game, Carlos Ruiz Zafonís second novel, has done a bit of travelling with me! My review might be coloured by the length of time I took to wade through this book, having stopped taking trains to work and my only reading time is when I travel, or on rare holidays. At times, it was hard to pick it up and get back into it. But I know Genevieveís been waiting for a while for my review... and what I offer is only my opinion of course. Others may like the book more, or less.
Thank you for such a well thought out and beautifully written review.

Though it may not live up to Shadow of the Wind, just to read Zafon's words is a treat. I find as an author that he truly crafts the stories, as you said each thought and phrase is carefully selected to not just move the plot of the story, but to also paint a vivid picture. Perhaps Shadow resonated so much was because it was something of a gem, i just hope that the shine does not rub off. What I find remarkable as well is that his books are translated from Spanish yet the words all still seem to fit perfectly.

I did find some slow areas in Shadow, so i doubt that it was your travels that gave that impression. it is a tough balance in that there is suspense and mystery, but it is the crafting of the words that perhaps can cause some things to get drawn out just a bit.

I do like the thought that there are similarities to Shadow in the setting and in the themes, there was a touch of the supernatural, a mysterious beautiful love interest and a few twists to keep the reader guessing. It also makes me look forward to reading it as I appreciate that the setting and the theme of the book also centers around books and that love. it is almost as though Zafron tips his hat to his love of reading and writing by also centering his plots around this. I think that also shows his passion. I am a bit surprised in truth that Zafron has not gained more popularity.

I do genuinely thank you for this review as I know that your reading time has greatly diminished. I finally found a way around my aversion to hard cover books now that i can download them at only a fraction of the cost. haha, not really when you factor in the cost of the reader! but i have downloaded it and once i get it transferred will hopefully be able to get to reading it!

“I'm just part of the problem!”

Since: Dec 07

Melbourne, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#75
Dec 30, 2009
 
genevieve wrote:
<quoted text>
haha, maybe not an airport book shop, but i can assure you i have downloaded it already. now i have everything set up, except one small glitch. i can't move my downloaded books to the reader, something to do with my Adobe. errr. perhaps because it was a pirated copy I can't get it to authenticate. dang it!
Yes I can imagine your aversion to hard covers is solved by your new toy! But your life of crime is catching up with you... did you PIRATE Adobe? I never knew anyone who actually bought it!

Well anyway, I sincerely hope you can iron out the technical glitch, and the other technical glitch we have right now :(

Take care my friend! I'll say that here, and know that it got to you!

“I'm just part of the problem!”

Since: Dec 07

Melbourne, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#76
Jan 2, 2010
 
genevieve wrote:
<quoted text>
Thank you for such a well thought out and beautifully written review.
Though it may not live up to Shadow of the Wind, just to read Zafon's words is a treat. I find as an author that he truly crafts the stories, as you said each thought and phrase is carefully selected to not just move the plot of the story, but to also paint a vivid picture. Perhaps Shadow resonated so much was because it was something of a gem, i just hope that the shine does not rub off. What I find remarkable as well is that his books are translated from Spanish yet the words all still seem to fit perfectly.
I did find some slow areas in Shadow, so i doubt that it was your travels that gave that impression. it is a tough balance in that there is suspense and mystery, but it is the crafting of the words that perhaps can cause some things to get drawn out just a bit.
I do like the thought that there are similarities to Shadow in the setting and in the themes, there was a touch of the supernatural, a mysterious beautiful love interest and a few twists to keep the reader guessing. It also makes me look forward to reading it as I appreciate that the setting and the theme of the book also centers around books and that love. it is almost as though Zafron tips his hat to his love of reading and writing by also centering his plots around this. I think that also shows his passion. I am a bit surprised in truth that Zafron has not gained more popularity.
I do genuinely thank you for this review as I know that your reading time has greatly diminished. I finally found a way around my aversion to hard cover books now that i can download them at only a fraction of the cost. haha, not really when you factor in the cost of the reader! but i have downloaded it and once i get it transferred will hopefully be able to get to reading it!
Thank you for the comments my friend!

About the author's popularity: did I tell you that I found Shadow of the Wind on sale, out on the street at the front of a city book store, for $10? It was as though they struggled to give them away. One of the very few times I've bought a book on a whim; I usually go shopping with a list that I've worked out beforehand. When I returned to the office, I waved it at one of our staff who is a part-time English teacher. She said it was one of her top-ten books of all time. It puzzles me also, why he has not become more popular.

Well, I hope you enjoy the book, and the new reader :)

“clown?!”

Since: Mar 08

*********************

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#77
Jan 3, 2010
 
genevieve wrote:
<quoted text>
I have put it on my list! I did though get an e-reader for christmas so my list has gotten quite long, I already have downloaded 5 books i think. now i have to stop downloading and start reading!!
Holy crap! I missed this post. How do you like the e-reader? Is it worth the money, in your opinion? I'm running out of shelves!

“clown?!”

Since: Mar 08

*********************

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#78
Jan 3, 2010
 
I don't know if anyone else enjoys literary theory (I wasn't sure I did) but I just finished the book, How to Read Literature Like a Professor, by Thomas Foster. Foster is a professor, of course and this book talks about the symbolism one encounters in a story: a road is a life path, rain is baptism or rebirth, etc. As a writer I was fascinated and plan to exploit the ideas for my personal domination of the world (HAAAAA!! YOU WILL BOW TO MEEEEE!!!) But as a reader- or watcher, even- of story, I find myself having a new appreciation of things. Scenes and situations have taken on a new meaning and a new form of interpretation.

“Ignore the trolls”

Since: Oct 08

Potton, UK

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#79
Jan 17, 2010
 
Don't know if any of you are into James Ellroy novels (hate him, he is far too good at his craft for mere mortals like me!), but BBC Radio 4 had him as a guest on Desert Island Discs today. More interestng for what he said in between the records he chose to take to the desert island. Hope this link will play across the pond - it's 30 mins long, by the way.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00psp99...

Since: Oct 07

Cochrane, Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#80
Jan 18, 2010
 
lordmagellan wrote:
<quoted text>Holy crap! I missed this post. How do you like the e-reader? Is it worth the money, in your opinion? I'm running out of shelves!
I LOVE IT!

seriously, it is a bit expensive (santa was good to me) but to me it is worth it. like you, i have little shelf room left. i take loads to the used book store, but it always seems like such a waste! it is a bit odd to get used to reading off of a screen, but once you are used to it it is cool. it is so compact that i can't wait to travel with it! I am so used to lugging books with me! and there are other features too, you can load photos and music. as well, you can highlight passages and make notes, there is a section for drawing and as well making text notes. oh, and if you don't know a word you can touch it and a dictionary pops up and defines it!!!!

LOVE IT.

did i mention i love it?

Tell me when this thread is updated: (Registration is not required)

Add to my Tracker Send me an email

Showing posts 61 - 80 of86
|
Go to last page| Jump to page:
Type in your comments below
Name
(appears on your post)
Comments
Characters left: 4000
Type the numbers you see in the image on the right:

Please note by clicking on "Post Comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Other Recent Genevieve Discussions

Search the Genevieve Forum:
Topic Updated Last By Comments
Word Association (Jul '08) Jan '13 Huh 6,031
Wacky Websites (Nov '08) Feb '11 saviorself 368
Watch any good movies lately? (May '08) Feb '11 saviorself 969
What if !?!?!?!?! (May '10) Jan '11 Zsadist 11
Randon Question Thread (Mar '09) Dec '10 Old Time User 525
HI everyone (Aug '10) Oct '10 Kerridwen 6
Hey Genevieve!!!! (Sep '10) Oct '10 skybobbie 3
•••
•••
•••