Monday, January 27, 2014

Review: Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Series: Red Rising Trilogy, #1
Publisher: Del Rey (Random House)
Expected Publication: January 28, 2013
Pages: 400

The war begins...

Darrow is a Helldiver, one of a thousand men and women who live in the vast caves beneath the surface of Mars. Generations of Helldivers have spent their lives toiling to mine the precious elements that will allow the planet to be terraformed. Just knowing that one day people will be able to walk the surface of the planet is enough to justify their sacrifice. The Earth is dying, and Darrow and his people are the only hope humanity has left.

Until the day Darrow learns that it is all a lie. Mars is habitable - and indeed has been inhabited for generations by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. The Golds regard Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

With the help of a mysterious group of rebels, Darrow disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside.

But the command school is a battlefield. And Darrow isn't the only student with an agenda...
I received an arc in exchange for an honest review - thank you to Random House for sending me a copy of this book. 

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Review: Endless by Amanda Gray

Endless by Amanda Gray
Series: I assume...?? But I won't be reading it.
Publisher: Month9Books
Published: October 8, 2013
Pages: 384
Jenny Kramer knows she isn’t normal. After all, not everybody can see the past lives of people around them. When she befriends Ben Daulton, resident new boy, the pair stumbles on an old music box with instructions for “mesmerization” and discover they may have more in common than they thought.

Like a past life.

Using the instructions in the music box, Ben and Jenny share a dream that transports them to Romanov Russia and leads them to believe they have been there together before. But they weren’t alone. Nikolai, the mysterious young man Jenny has been seeing in her own dreams was there, too. When Nikolai appears next door, Jenny is forced to acknowledge that he has traveled through time and space to find her. Doing so means he has defied the laws of time, and the Order, an ominous organization tasked with keeping people in the correct time, is determined to send him back. While Ben, Jenny and Nikolai race against the clock—and the Order—the trio discovers a link that joins them in life—and beyond death.

I received a kindle edition of NetGalley from Month9Books in exchange for an honest review.

This book was disappointing. 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Review: The Odyssey by Homer

The Odyssey by Homer
Translator: Robert Fitzgerald
Published: 800 B.C.
Publisher:  Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Pages: 515

"Here there is no anxious straining after mighty effects, but rather a constant readiness for what the occasion demands, a kind of Odyssean adequacy to the task in hand." --SEAMUS HEANEY    

Robert Fitzgerald's is the best and best-loved modern translation of The Odyssey, and the only one admired in its own right as a great poem in English. Fitzgerald's supple verse is ideally suited to the story of Odysseus' long journey back to his wife and home after the Trojan War. Homer's tale of love, adventure, food and drink, sensual pleasure, and mortal danger reaches the English-language reader in all its glory.
I found The Odyssey much more enjoyable than the first - mostly because I think Odysseus introduces a new theme in a bland setting (that only included honor and glory in The Iliad): family. And yet, the failings here are very similar to that of The Iliad.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Review: The Iliad by Homer

The Iliad by Homer
Translator: Robert Fitzgerald
Series: None
Published: 800 B.C.
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Pages: 632

Anger be now your song, immortal one,Akhilleus' anger, doomed and ruinous, that caused the Akhaians loss on bitter lossand crowded brave souls into the undergloom, leaving so many dead men-carrionfor dogs and birds; and the will of Zeus was done. 

Since it was first published more than twenty-five years ago, Robert Fitzgerald's prizewinning translation of Homer's battle epic has become a classic in its own right: a standard against which all other versions of The Iliad are compared. Fitzgerald's work is accessible, ironic, faithful, written in a swift vernacular blank verse that "makes Homer live as never before" (Library Journal). 
Though I gave this a low rating, I am very glad to have read it. Not just because it's "one of those books," but because of the insight it gives into Greek culture. Plainly put, Homer is the only one who will give you the earliest and purest understanding of Greek life. He lays down the law of how people should live their lives. Writers after him choose to either agree or disagree (and disagreeing is the interesting part).  So while I can confidently say that I now understand early Greek thought, I can also say that I very much disagree with almost all of it.

Hello World!

What's up, everyone?!

Yeah, it's been awhile. Don't get me wrong, I've been reading - I just have a pile of books to review - but the actual sitting down to write a review hasn't happened. College life, I tell you. I'm just happy I was able to continue reading some of my books, alongside everything I do for classes. Even on break, I spend every waking moment soaking in family, tv, or books, and since I go back in a few days, I'm finally resolving to sit down and write out these reviews from, basically, the summer until winter. And since I did most of my reading this year then...well, at least anyone who still reads this blog is in for a treat! Like seriously, I bet everyone is gone now. Wanderlust Books? More like WonderWhen...

I do have a pile of books lying around that I don't need, so maybe when I come back for spring break, I'll finally get around to hosting a HUGE giveaway. If anyone out there still reads this...nag me to do this and it will happen. Otherwise I might just keep putting it off.

So I'm off to write! Happy New Years - maybe this year I'll actually have a steady flow of posts.