Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Hunger Games

Lies dieses Review auf Deutsch
Title: The Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
Publisher: Scholastic Press
ISB N: 0439023483 / 978-0439023481
Price: 17.99 $
Source: borrowed from a friend
Pages: 384
Previous Book: /
Following Books: 2. Catching Fire / 3. Mockingjay

Katniss lives in District 12, the poorest District in the country Panem and she has to go hunting illegally to support her mother and her sister Prim. Every year, the so called Hunger Games are organized where 24 tributes - a boy and a girl from each district - have to fight to death, until one of them survives. The tributes are aged 12 to 18 years old and are chosen by random. This year, Prim's name is in the lottery wheel for the first time, but is picked. This means the certain death for her because she is badly nurtured and can do only few things. To safe her sister, Katniss volunteers to fight instead of her sister and therefore she and Peeta go into the fight for District 12. During the preparation phase, Peeta suggests to pretend to be in love with each other to get many sponsors (they could raise their survival chances). But when they get into the arena, everyone is for themselves. But it seems, as if Peeta didn't only pretend his love to Katniss... or did he? Will Katniss survive?

Own Opinion
I really liked the book and it was easy to read. The Hunger Games is the first book since a long time where the protagonist always did exactly what I wanted her to do in every situation. Also, the introduction to the story was very well-done; the surrondings of the new country Panem was described without sounding boring. But there are obviously many people dying in this story which is why the series is not to recommend to sensitive people. A few friends have read the books before I started and said that the violence in this trilogy is pretty extreme, but I actually didn't think of it that way; maybe it's just because I was already prepared for it and already know violence from many books and movies. To put it in a nutshell, I wanna give a huge thumbs up to Suzanne Collins. I already have the second book borrowed from my friend and am gonna read it during Christmas break; be sure to look forward to a review on this blog!

by Cécile

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

House of Night Series

Lies dieses Review auf Deutsch

Series: The House of Night
Author: P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast
Publisher: Atom (GB)
Price: 6.99 £ (9.30 € in Germany)
Source: bought (in English)/Library
Pages: 348
Books: 1.) Marked, 2.) Betrayed, 3.) Chosen, 4.) Untamed, 5.) Hunted, 6.) Tempted, 7.) Burned, 8.) Awakened

"Marked" is the first book of the House of Night-series which is basically about Zoey Redbird, a teenanger who has been 'marked' and is now turning into a vampyre fledglings. They go into a special school, the House of Night, that teaches them the basics about their new lives as vampyres. After about 4 years (if you don't die beforehand) you grow out of being a fledgling and become a full vampyre. The priestesses that serve the goddess Nyx have tattoos appearing of their skin but only after they "graduated" to a full vampyre, so it is very weird that Zoey has them appearing already now where she's still a fledgling - she later finds out that she has an affinity for all 5 elements: spirit, water, fire, earth and air which makes her to a "priestess in training".
In the first book, it's all about finding friends: Stevie Rae, Erin, Shaunee and Damien. There is also another "priestess in training" at the House of Night, Aphrodite, who can be called a selfish bully and she is the leader of the Dark Daughters, a traditional school group that makes its own rituals for the goddess Nyx. With Zoey having an affinity for all five elements, Aphrodite is forced to invite her to the Dark Daughters and accidently summons evil spirits during a ceremony at Samhain (=Halloween), and Zoey has to fight them to save her human ex boyfriend. Wether she'll be able to make it and if she can bring Aphrodite down from her high horse, you will have to read for yourself.

Own Opinion
The first thing I'm gonna say is that my opinion on this series is quite negative. If you liked it then don't read on, because I didn't. I have to admit that the plot is pretty good and I also enjoyed the fact that it's none of those "oh my gosh we're all so innocent, we never made a move and never mention the word sex! Oh my god now I said it myself!"-books.
But theres guys. I know I didn't mention any guys above (except for Damien, but Damien doesn't count because he's gay), but theres guys. Lots of guys. And I don't like the way Zoey goes around town with guys. I'm on book five right now (I've only read this far because I bought the first 5 books at once and if I bought them I'm gonna read them) and I think she's on guy number 4 right now or something, always coming back to the first one, than saying "But I love the second one I want to get back together with him!" And I think it's pathetic and - don't read the next few words if you're younger than 13 - a slut.
I know it's harsh for me to give a series a negative review because of the romance part, but I had those thoughts going on since book two or three and I thought "Oh it can't be that bad, I'll give it another shot" and it actually IS that bad - a friend of mine has read the first two books independently from me and she gave up in the middle of the second book with the same reasons that I have.
To be quite honest, now I'm going to finish the series - it's only three more books -, but I'm not gonna buy the other ones (it's not worth the money any more to me) but instead borrow them from the library. Maybe I'll end up liking the series so much to be able to look over the boys-part of the series. If that is the case, I will write another blog post reviewing it positively.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Reformed Vampire Support Group

Klicke hier, um das Rview in Deutsch zu lesen
Title: The Reformed Vampire Support Group
Author: Catherine Jinks
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
ISB N: 0152066098 / 978-0152066093
Price: 17.00 $
Source: Library
Pages: 368

Everybody has his own fantasies about vampires, but all of them have one thing in common: vampires ar strong and dangerous. But that's wrong. They are poor fragile creatures that are either spending their nights in front of the TV or with their heads over the toilet because the vampires in Sydney, Australia, are abstinent: they feed on guinea pigs, not human blood.  They even formed a support group that meets every Tuesday night, but one night Casimir (the vampire that directly or indirectly infected the rest of Australia's vampires) is found as a pile of ashes in his appartment. This means danger for everybody because the vampirehunter has Casimir's adress book, so he could stake every member of the support group during the day (that's when they're clinically dead and just lay around in the dark).
Because of the fact that the killer did not only use the stake, but also a silver bullet on its victim, the support group does some research and Father Ramón, the priest that supervises the vampire group, Dave and Nina drive to Walgeroo corner because that's where the most silver bullits of this kind have been orderd in whole Australia.They find out that they are dealing with illegal werewolf fights that are being organized by the McKinnons. The priest tries to talk to father and son about the mysterious bullets, but then they are all put in underground cells (that were once used as water tanks).
Will Nina, Dave and Father Ramón be able to free themselves? Will they be able to stop the werewolf fights? Will the support group be able to find the vampire hunter? Read yourself to find out ;D.

Own Opinion
Obviosly I liked the book! it was written in a great style (even though I don't really like first person-narrators), the storyline and the realization were fantastic. But actually something new and unexpected happened again and again: the book isn't constructed like a narration rat but more like a narration camel - with lots and lots and LOTS of  bumps! They actually said on the book that there were sudden plot changes to the last page but I didn't expect it to be this extreme. I actually got bored at the and because there was always something sudden  and you cold barely chill out from the last one.
But I think it's remarkable that the author Catherine Jinks can describe action scenes with so much power which is actually very hard to do in books, I could also relate very well to the main character Nina.
Put into a nutshell, I really liked the book which is kind of surprising because I only took the book at the library becaus I liked the cover :) Everyone who likes action should take a good look at this book but if you're on the look for a good vampire romance you're on the wrong page.

by Cecile


Hey guys!
So todays post won't be a book review (btw I'm sorry I didn't post for so long, I have a few good ones coming up, I promise!) but I'm gonna be talking about something that has to do with books. The NaNoWriMo, short for National Novel Writing Month (the picture above is the website's header) is from November 1st till November 30th and they want YOU! What do they want you for? To write a novel.
A book of 50 000 words is the goal of everybody who is participating.

Personally, I got no idea why they had to choose November - I guess because it's sad, foggy and rainy and you spend your whole time at home anyways - and I'm not really okay with this particular month being the NaNoWriMo because I have to finish my seminare paper untl Nov. 8th and then I have lots of exams coming up.

I found someone in a forum talking about NaNoWriMo (dude that's hard to write with all the capital letters in the middle) and I remembered I had heard about it last year through a tweet by Cassandra Clare but I didn't really care so I didn't check what it was. I did this year and now I'm all excited (which is probably bad news for me considering the stuff in November I wrote down in the last paragraph).

Basically, you sign up on the website and then starting November 1st, midnight in your time zone, you're allowed to start writing your story - with any program you want - and you just update your word count every day. At the end of the month you upload your novel to the website and an automatic programm counts the words to tell wether you cheated or not.

Alright that were kind of the basics, if you need any more info I suggest reading everything on the page. I think I'm goig to participate and I want you to participate, too, so that we can all motivate each other, maybe I'll write a post in the middle of November to tell y'all how things are going with it.

Have fun :)

P.S.: I'm really sorry I abandoned Kick Their Butt While Reading, as already said I have a few good posts coming up because during my vacation in Hungary I read 6 books :)

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Valley of Horses (Earth's Children)

Klick hier für die Deutsche Version 
Title: Valley of Horses
Author: Jean M. Auel
Publisher: Bantam
ISB N: 0553250531 / 978-0553250534
Price: 8.99 $
Source: bought with my Christmas money
Pages: 592
Previous Book: 1. The Clan of the Cave Bear
Following Books: 3. The Mammoth Hunters, 4. The Plains of Passage, 5. The Shelters of Stone, 6. The Land of Painted Caves

Just like in The Clan of the Cave Bear (see link above to get to my review on that book) this novel is based around the girl Ayla living in the Stone Age. She was thrown out of the Clave's cave at the end of the first book and now has to find her way to 'the Others' - whoever that might be, she only knows that they look like her. After a long time of journeying she finds a huge valley that she decides to stay in for the winter. She calls it "Valley of Horses" because she encounters a flock of horses, plus, she raises a foal called Winnie, who's mother she had killed as a result of hunting. So until the foal has grown up, Ayla can't leave her valley, at a later hunt she also finds a hurt lion baby she names Baby and raises as well.
Parallely the story of brothers Jondhalar and Thonolan is told who are on their way to find the end of the Big-Mother-River (today: Donau). On their way there, they encounter many dangerous adventures and also a couple of other tribes, amongst one of them Thonolan actually finds his big love Jetamio with whom he wants to stay. Also Jondhalar plans to find a companion.
How will the journey end up for them? (Will they ever reach the end of the big river?) Will Ayla ever find 'the Others' and if so, will they accept her?

Own Opinion
To sum it up before I started: I really liked this book. The chapters were alternated between the Ayla-plotline and the Jondhalar and Thonolan-plotline and honestly, I preferred the chapters with the brothers because quite frankly, the Ayla-chapters just lacked direct speech. Sure, Ayla thought a lot and also talked to Baby and Winnie, but there were too many descriptions and too few direct speech (which I can totally understand since there wouldn't bee much talking if you were alone by yourself in a big valley).
I have to admit, during the middle of the book it got veeeeery boring, I actually stopped reading it because I didn't find it appealing anymore. I was even more disappointed because I loved the first book so much.
Half a year later I remembered that I loved the chapters with the brothers so much, so I started reading again. The plot got more interesting and I felt very close to the characters, especially Thonolan who is my favourite character which is why I think it's unfair that it happened to him (you know what I'm talking about if you read the book) instead of Jondhalar (I didn't really like him that much since he always got everything and everyone because of his looks x_x) and I cried. When I was reading that part of the book, I was on my graduation excurse (sailing) a few minutes before dinner: I cried into my rice and chicken and everybody thought that my boyfriend had broken up with me or something xD.
Towards the end of the book, where Winnie grows up to a mare, it gets kind of perverted. Winnie 'says' goodbye to Ayla and finds a stallion (no worries, she comes back later on :)). It gets pretty detailed in the description and you'd nearly think you'd be reading one of those sex stories you can read for free online.
My mum had read the first book and recommended it to me - I'm pretty happy I was the one who read the second book first because if she were the one she probably wouldn't have allowed me to read the Valley of Horses. In fact, I think when she's finished with the book, my mum will tell me "You're not gonna buy the third book if it's as perverted as this one is!"
But I still liked it :)

by Cecile

Saturday, February 12, 2011


Lies dieses Review auf Deutsch
Title: Uglies
Author: Scott Westerfield
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Price: 9.99 $ (paperback)
Source: bought
Pages: 448
Followed by: 2.) Pretties, 3.)  Specials, 4.) Extras

The book is set in the future and every person has to endure plastic surgery, the first time at the age of 16, the second time in their early 30s. The kids that did not have a surgery so far are called the "Uglies", all the other people are "Pretties".
Tally, the main character, is an Ugly and can't wait to become a Pretty - especially since her best friend Pretty is one. She decides to visit him in New Pretty Town (the place were the Pretties from age 16-30 live, Uglies are forbidden to enter). On her way back she stages a lot of confusion and meets another Ugly, Shay.
The two girls become best friends and Tally couldn't be any happier because their birthday is on the same date, so their operation will be on the same date aswell.
Shay teaches Tally hoverboarding (hoverboard= something kinda like a skateboard that kan fly) and together they make a couple of night-time trips to Rusty-ruins even though that's forbidden (Rusties= people like we are today, but they died out since they made so many mistakes).
Shay has a very negative point of view considering the plastic surgeries: she doesn't want her exterior to be changed, but follow her friends who flew. Tally doesn't look at those thoughts seriously since her friend Peris had thought the same way before the operation but had it done as well.
So Tally was even more surprised when Shay presented her plan to run away a week before their birthday. Shay wants to go (together with Tally) to a Rusty-like city called 'Smoke' that had been founded by runaways - and hit the road in that night.
But Tally wants to fulfill her wish and be operated and be with Peris again, so Shay takes off alone, but not before handing her a note with clues on how to get to Smoke.
On her birthday Tally is picked up get to the hospital in order to be operated but there are a few complications with the surgery, so she's brought into another building which is actually the headquarter of the Specials (kinda like the FBI) where they present her a deal she can't say 'no' to: Tally is supposed to follow her friend to Smoke and then tell the Specials where that place is - or they wouldn't do the surgery on her.
After some consideration Tally accepted and made her way to Smoke, provided with a survival backpack, a hoverboard and a GPS-direction finder she has to activate when she arrives at her destination.
After a few days and some solved puzzles Tally gets to Smoke and wants to activate the device but doesn't have any time to. A week later she's so used to the life in the runaway-town that the question rises if she should really betray her new friends and inform the Specials, but what about her surgery...?

Personal Opinion:
That book was awesome!
I liked that it was set in the future. In my opinion, Scott Westerfeld displayed our world as it is today fantastically - we're the Rusties - and what consequences will follow the desicions we have to face. With the Uglies and the Pretties Westerfeld created an utopian city in which everyone has the same chances (looking at their exterior) but he also brings light to the negative aspect of a world like that which is amplified by putting a controlling government into the whole mix.
The story is ass-kicking and actually I'm kinda jealous I didn't think of a plot like that (even though I'm sure I would have ruined the concept with my inability to put my thoughts and ideas into words).
Obviously the story goes on and I'm also gonna buy and review the other 3 books as soon as I have money :).

by Cecile

Friday, February 11, 2011


Hey y'all!
I know that I haven't been posting lately, but I had exams until the 24th of January and after that I didn't feel like posting or didn't have time to type up any reviews.
But that's over now, I hope I can promise to post more reviews for you - to be quite honest, I already sacrificed my sick day since I stayed home from school today to type one up and I'll either post that one tonight or tomorrow.
But first things first, I have a book-haul for you: so-to-speak books that I purchased and/or read lately or that I'm about to read, so you can expect a few reviews of those:

1.) The "House of Night"-series by P.C. and Kristin Cast, book 1-5:
  • Marked
  • Betrayed
  • Chosen
  • Untamed
  • Haunted
Should I review all of those books in one post or dedicate a post to each of them? I'm tending for the latter since then there'd be more stuff to write about and it would make a higher number of reviews.
2.) "Melodien der Finsternis" by Jennifer Jäger, in German
Here's the problem that it's only available in German since it was only published last October and it's written by a student, so I don't really think it's already famous enough to be translated into English, but I'll review it anyways.
3.) "Alex Ryder"-series by Anthony Horowitz, book 1-6:
  • Stormbreaker
  • Point Blanc
  • Skeleton Key
  • Eagle Strike
  • Scorpia
  • Arch Angel
I got these 6 books from my brother for Christmas as an eBook - here again the question: one review for all of them or one for each? Again, I am for the latter.
4.) "The short 2nd life of Bree Tanner" by Stephenie Meyer (bought in German)

I'd also like to mention that lately I haven't read really much since I've been reading "Quatre soeurs: Enid - tombe 1" by Malika Ferdjoukh which was in French, so hands down, I nearly understood nothing. And when I don't really like a book, or in this case, don't understand much, I read soooo sloooowly! But I'd say it was the kind of book that I'd like to read (if I would have had understood it).
But maybe I'll buy or borrow it somewhere in German and we'll see if it'll make a review.

TTYL (talk to y'all later)