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Book Review – Star Wars: Dark Force Rising

 

 

 

 

I read to live and I live to read. That's my circle of life.

I read to live and I live to read. That’s my circle of life.”

Greetings Fellow BookNerds!

I realize it’s been a while since my last post, but that’s what happens when you move to a new place and get your first job out of university. In other words, life got busy. Surprisingly, I’ve had a lot more time to set aside for some of the more simple pleasures, like reading for instance, which has allowed me to reward all of you wonderful followers with the first book review since… well, whenever my last one was.

Oh, and I should also mention, in case you haven’t noticed already, that I am changing the look of my blog. As much as I love the colour red, admittedly it was getting a little hard on the eyes, not to mention a little boring. Unfortunately, this change means that I need to spend a bit of time fixing a few things that the new theme went and altered, so if you’re unable to read some of the posts or if something is acting funny when you’re trying to click on it, then that’s probably why.

So, without further ado, here’s what I thought of Timothy Zahn’s “Star Wars: Dark Force Rising”.

 

Darkforcerising

stars-5
WARNING: POTENTIAL SPOILERS (I always try my best to avoid spoiling a book for others, but I can’t make any guarantees. Hopefully anyone reading this is already aware that Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker’s father, and if not… Oops :P)
I previously posted a mid-way review for this book, figuring it might take a while until I actually made it to the end with everything that’s been happening lately, and I felt it was my duty to share at least some of my thoughts with you guys. Since then, my impression of this book has only improved. My favourite parts in this book are definitely the interactions between Mara Jade and Luke Skywalker, mostly because she has her sights set on killing him, and yet it ends up with either him saving her life, or her begrudgingly going to him for help. It’s my new favourite example of a love-hate relationship… that’s not to say that they’re in love with each other, but there’s definitely some kind of connection between them that cannot be ignored.
My next favourite, of course, is the Lando – Han tag team, getting up to all sorts of shenanigans as usual, mostly Han dragging Lando into missions that he doesn’t really want any part of. Probably due to past experiences that didn’t always end so well for him. They definitely had more presence in this book, most likely because the conflict between them and the new imperial fleet had amplified substantially.
That’s another thing I really liked about this book. The first one was more of an overview of what was going on with all the members of the original star wars gang since they blew up the Star Destroyer and the Empire crumbled beneath the feet of those who had chosen the path to the dark side. That’s not to say that nothing happened, but this one was definitely a lot more actioned packed, and you can tell that a whole lot of s*** is gonna be going down in the next one with the lovely little cliff hanger he left at the end.
Then there’s the crazy Jedi master C’baoth, who has clearly spent a little too much time by himself. At first I thought it might just be a character quirk, like when Luke first met Yoda. He was a little weird, speaking mostly in riddles and rummaging through his stuff. It was a delightful quirkiness that made you smile when you saw it. C’baoth is just… nuts! He has been driven mad by his own ideals, which pretty much involves Jedi becoming the rulers of everything and everyone. Now, maybe he turns out to be a good guy in the next one, and that everything until now has been an act, although I find it hard to believe after what happened at the end [don’t worry, I’ll keep the details to myself].
Overall, it was a damn good read. It was one of those books where the more I read, the more I wanted to keep reading, which surprised me because I was originally hesitant to read these books in the first place. Now, I can’t wait to find out what happens next, especially after what they discovered at the end of this one… let’s just say that certain events are seem to be repeating themselves, and it doesn’t look to good for the good guys.

I’m actually gonna take a little break from the series to finish another book I had started reading a while back, but set aside to start reading this series. Good Omens is a novel I’ve wanted to read for a very long time, ever since a friend of mine used to read it to me on the bus on our way to school. I used to be able to read books in any moving vehicle, but after a while I found myself getting a little motion sick, which is why I was very grateful that she was willing to read to me. Also, I didn’t own the book at the time, and she was giving it so much praise that I knew I had to read it myself someday.

In the meantime, feel free to leave your thoughts on this book, or any other book, in the comments, and as always, happy reading!

 

Cheers,

BookNerd

May 22, 2015 Posted by | Favourite Books For 2015, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Paper Towns: Coming to a Theatre Near You!

I read to live and I live to read. That's my circle of life.

“I read to live and I live to read. That’s my circle of life.”

Greetings Fellow BookNerds!

Have you read and/or seen the Fault In Our Stars by John Green? If not, then make that priority number one.

Have you read Paper Towns, also by John Green? If not, I would also suggest that you do so as soon as possible.

Okay, have you done both of those things? Great, now you can read the remainder of John Green’s books, because by this point you’re likely hooked ^_^

I’ve already said this many times before, but John Green is my favourite modern teen fiction writer. He writes the kind of romance stories that you don’t have to be a teenager, or even a teen romance lover, to enjoy. It’s original, creative, and without any of that unnecessary cheesiness you get with other romance stories like, dare I say Twilight??? I apologize to all of those who have remained loyal fans to the vampire-human-werewolf love triangle, but at the same time I cannot help but throw this thought out there; if those books can get published, then I suppose anything is possible.

Okay, that’s enough of the Twilight bashing, especially since I could go on for hours. As you can see based on the title of todays post, I want to share my thoughts on the trailer for the upcoming movie based on one of my favourite novels of all time; Paper Towns. What I loved most about this story is that you really didn’t know how things were going to end up between Margo Roth Spiegleman and Quentin Jacobson. There’s nothing worse than a book with an obvious ending, as it only serves to leave you feeling disappointed in the end. Spiegleman was one of those unpredictable characters who lives life at her own pace, and just when both you, the reader, and Jacobson think they’ve got her figured out, they realize how very wrong they were. She really is an enigma wrapped in a riddle. I also enjoy Jacobon’s character, who to me is the living embodiment of the yearning that exists in all of us to break free from normalcy and seek out the strange and the unknown… and, you know, follow the person we’re head over heels for.

I’m always hesitant to watch movies that are based on books, especially when those books are very dear and near to my heart. After what they did to Eragon and some of the Harry Potter movies, my hesitancy has only grown more intense. I mean, how hard is it to slap a pair of elf ears on a girl, or pop a few creatures into a maze? And let’s not forget my disappointment from not being able to see what a Blast Ended Skrewt actually looks like. Those feelings aside, I finally convinced myself after half a year of it coming to theaters to watch The Fault in Our Stars, and you know what? I was absolutely delighted. I’m not saying it was perfect, but it was damn near close to how I had envisioned it looking in my head. The cast was great, the script was pure gold, and even though I don’t usually cry over watching a movie, I won’t deny that there was a tear or two threatening to role out of my tear duct.

Now, let’s cross our fingers that the same magic will be worked on this next movie, based on one of the first John Green books I owned – the first one being Will Greyson, Will Greyson, which I’m also looking forward to seeing a movie rendition of in the future. Any who, based on what I’ve seen from the trailer, thee movie does seem to show some promise, but I figure you guys should watch it and decide for yourselves. Will it be a hit? A miss? Are we looking at the new age of teen romance in the film industry? Watch the trailer below and share your thoughts in the comments, or if you’ve already seen it… well, you can leave your thoughts in the comments before anyone else does. Enjoy ^_^

Q: What’s the craziest, most out there thing you’ve ever done in your entire life?

Look forward to a year of epic movies, and epic books of course, and as always, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

April 22, 2015 Posted by | Book-To-Movie Adaptations | , , , , | Leave a comment

Star Wars: Dark Force Rising – Midway Book Review & More!

I read to live and I live to read. That's my circle of life.

“I read to live and I live to read. That’s my circle of life.”

Greetings Fellow BookNerds!

As winter finally begins to say its goodbyes and Spring comes in to takes its place, embracing us with its long awaited warmth, our minds also begin to lose their fatigue, overcoming the urge to hibernate and instead succumbing to the overwhelming need to dive head first into even more books. After all, there’s nothing like lying down on our backs in a luscious green meadow, holding a book high to the sky so that we can absorb both the book and the beautiful scenery into our eyes.

Unfortunately, if you’re in the Ottawa area like me, then your must have dropped down into your stomach as white flakes of frozen water began pouring from the sky for the umpteenth time. In a way, it was to be expected. After all, Ottawa weather is known for teasing us by offering a sample of nice weather, and then ripping it from our hands without any mercy. I love snow as much as a next person, but even I feel that it has overstayed its welcome. It’s almost getting to the point where we might have to officially change when the first day of spring is.

 Putting the disappointing weather aside, I have decided to provide all of you lovely booknerds with a pre-review of one of the books I am in the midst of reading. As you all know, I’m a slow reader. Avid, but slow. It can take me months to get through a single novel, regardless of how much I’m getting into the story. I’ve been getting some reading tips from my roommates, and I can feel my word intake speeding up already, but you still might have to wait a bit until I finish my current novel.

However, seeing as I’ve made it to the halfway point, I wanted t share my thoughts with you thus far.

Star Wars: Dark Force Rising by Timothy Zahn

Star Wars Dark Force Rising

Star Wars: Dark Force Rising is the sequel to Heir to the Empire from Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn Trilogy, a series which takes place five years after the events of the final Star Wars movie [the actual final one, not the ones they made after the original… you know, the ones that could have been good but for some reason weren’t]. Luke Skywalker is among the last of the Jedi , and therefore must carry the burden of not only training the next generation of Jedi, but also building up the new Republic.

In this action-packed sequel, remnants of the Empire are closing in, doing everything they can to get their hands on Leia and the twins she will soon give birth to. At the same time, Luke has finally tracked down who he believes to be the last of the Jedi masters… and let’s just say he isn’t quite what he expected. He’s certainly no Yoda, but Luke still has a great deal to learn before he can truly claim to be a Jedi master himself. Han and Lando, as always, get themselves into quite a bit of trouble, almost to the point where they’re questioning each others loyalties, but that just keeps things interesting. Then there’s the Noghri , most of whom are convinced that they must forever remain indebted to the Empire, while others realize that this is not a way of life that can continue into the future.

There is so much going on in this book already, and there’s still so much more to come. What I really like about Timothy Zahn’s writing is that he has captured the characters perfectly, and even with the new characters, he makes it feel as though they’ve been part of the of the star wars universe all along.

There used to be this unspoken rule that went around when I was young, which stated that if you were a star trek fan, then you weren’t allowed to like star wars. Well, to that I say if loving both scifi universes is wrong, then I don’t want to be right. My love of Star Wars has been around almost as long as my love of star trek, and you know why that is? Aside from both being based in the realm of science fiction, comparing these two universes is like comparing pokemon cards and yugioh cards; they’re just not comparable because they’re both good for very different reasons.  

Based on what I’ve read so far, I would definitely recommend this book to any and all star wars fans… heck, I would go so far as to recommend it to all science fiction fans! 

Now, while I’m in the mood for recommending things, if you haven’t had a chance to play this game, then I suggest you hop on Steam right now and get yourself a copy.

DSC07731I happened to come across this copy while I was at Value Village, and since it only cost a couple bucks, I saw no reason not to. I remembered seeing one of my brothers play it, and I knew my boyfriend was a big fan of it, so I knew it was good. It’s a bit of an older game, so the graphics aren’t the best, but the storyline and dialogue are amazing, and that’s something that’s hard to find in any game. It’s also a good game for someone like me, who is still relatively new to the gaming world outside of Pokemon, Tetris, Heroes of Might and Magic and Super Mario kart.

While still on the topic of science fiction, here’s today’s random question, which you can feel free to leave a response to in the comments below:

Q: Just like the kids from my youth claimed that you were not allowed to like both star wars and star trek, did the kids from your own youth come up with similarly crazy rules?

 

That’s all for today. Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below any time, and until next time, happy reading! 

Cheers,

BookNerd

 

March 27, 2015 Posted by | Favourite Books For 2015 | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Things to look forward to…

I read to live and I live to read. That's my circle of life.

“I read to live and I live to read. That’s my circle of life.”

Greetings Fellow BookNerds!

There are always so many things to look forward to in life; birthdays, Christmas, Halloween, 50% off sales at HMV, meeting your celebrity crush at Comiccon, etc… etc… Even if it’s just the little things, like getting to see your boyfriend after a long day at work, or playing with a cat you just met on the side of the street. There is just no end to the things we can see and do, and I think for many of us, it is those little things that keep us going, especially during those times when we realize the limitations of our mortal lives. When you only have one life to live, those little things should be cherished even more.

For me, it’s the thought that there will always be more books to read that drives me. It’s not the only thing, mind you, for life is never that simple, but if it wasn’t for the knowledge that there will always be another book to lay my hands on no matter how many books I’ve already read, mine would be a very sad existence indeed. We all need an escape from reality every now and again, otherwise we would go berserk from the stress and pressures of everyday life. Things like dragons, wizardry, hobbits and elves may be nothing more than fictitious concepts, but for some, these things are a symbol of hope, justice, courage and the possibility of better things to come. I would not be the person I am today if it wasn’t for a dear friend of mine introducing me to the world of Harry Potter in the fourth grade.

I was a quiet, awkward and anti-social introvert for a better part of my youth, struggling to find my place amongst those who already seemed to have everything figured out. Everyone has moments where they feel like a complete outsider, and for those fortunate few, the feeling is only temporary. I still find myself struggling to find my place, but ever since the day I first read Harry Potter and the Philosophers stone, my world has steadily undergone a change, and mostly for the better.

Now, reading and writing have become two of the biggest parts of who I am in the present and the future, right alongside my family, friends and the love of my life. This is why, even though I used to feel guilty about buying books when I still had so many in my possession already that remained unread, I can now buy books without experiencing that same guilt. Why? To put it simply, books are kind of like food; if you can’t see the food in front of you, then you’re less likely to eat it. It’s the same with books, in these sense that if you can’t see the book right in front of you, you’re less likely to read it. I wish to read as many books as I can, so if I can find books for a decent price, then I don’t see anything wrong with splurging a little bit every now and again.

In one of my previous posts, I started a list of places that I highly recommend people to stop by if they’re looking to purchase books at a reasonable price. My favourite’s to date are mostly used bookstores, and I have another one to add to the list.

4. Value Village

Yes, I realize that this is not strictly a bookstore, but you would be hard pressed to find a better bang for your buck. I usually drop in to browse their clothing selection, but there hasn’t been a single time when I haven’t found myself wondering over to their little book corner. The great thing about used books is that you’re more likely to find books that you’ve never seen or heard of before, or in other cases, you’ll find that one book you’ve spent ages searching for.

DSC07697

These are just a few of the little beauties I stumbled upon during my most recent trip to Value Village. Each one of them stood out to me for a different reason. The Alice Munro collection, for instance, reminded me of the journalism internship I completed last summer out in Huron County. One of the articles I wrote required me to go on a self-guided tour of all the locations that Alice Munro had either visited herself or wrote about in her short stories. It’s always fascinating to see how much a person’s writing is directly influenced by the people they meet and the places they’ve been. The novel by Terry Goodkind is based on the same universe as the Sword of Truth series, which I’m still trying to make my way through. I feel inspired by authors who are capable of organizing a story in a way where it can keep going from one book to the next. I’ll be lucky if I can complete a trilogy, let alone an 11 book series! Arctic Chill was recommended to me by my friend/roommate from Sweden, who is really into mystery and crime novels. Although not usually my cup of tea, I must confess that the synopsis did peek my interest somewhat. The last book… actually, that’s one I borrowed from my sister-in-law over the Christmas holidays which I have yet to get around to reading.
I’m going to have to teach myself some techniques that will help me to read books at a much quicker pace. That being said, here’s this weeks question:

Q: How do you read books quickly without missing any of the crucial details?

This is all to say that there will be many more book reviews to come, which means a great deal more for all of you lovely booknerds to look forward to. In the meantime, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

March 16, 2015 Posted by | Favourite Books For 2015 | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Words of Wisdom: Inspiring Words For Aspiring Writers

I read to live and I live to read. That's my circle of life.

“I read to live and I live to read. That’s my circle of life.”

Greetings Fellow BookNerds!

Writing is one of our oldest, most dynamic and inspiring professions, an art form capable of  bringing to life people, places and the world they exist within, through the use of a limited number of simple markings on a page. The fundamental concept of story writing really hasn’t changed all that much, in the sense that people do it with the intention of creating something based on either fact, fiction or both. The style and methods we use, however, are in a constant state of change, evolving in a way which reflects the very mindset of the society at any given time. What people consider to be a good read changes almost as quickly as fashion cell phone trends. Once day, it’s all about the vampire/human/werewolf love triangle, and the next day you have to be following the fight over the iron throne. The problem is that there is always a new book coming out, and as much as we would like to read them all, there are just not enough hours in a day, days in a week, weeks in a month… well, you get the picture. We basically have to pick and choose what we figure would be worth putting the time in to read, and cross our fingers that we won’t be disappointed.

Going back to the changes in writing styles, what I find to be the most impressive aspect of modern writing is how talented authors have become at creating the kinds of characters that we can’t help but fall head over heels for, to the point where we feel their pains and happiness as our own. That is not an easy thing to do, because you not only have to create a character people would find interesting, but who is also believable in the sense that the things they do and say are realistic, and not like the cheesy overacting you find in soap operas.

It’s a great skill, but that’s not all modern authors are good at. They’re also good at creating characters who may seem like they’ll be around until the end of the series, but then they go ahead and kill them off in a way which breaks our hearts and rips open our tear ducts. I would provide some examples, but I would hate to give away any spoilers. I’m sure that anyone who has seen or read Game of Thrones understands what I’m getting at. Those are the kinds of stories where even if a seemingly insignificant character gets killed off, the impact it has on our emotions is surprisingly powerful.

Before I go on rambling for too long, here is the quote which inspired these thoughts of mine. It’s a quote by the infamous horror writer Stephen King, whose ability to continuously pour stories out on paper no matter how many books he has already written will never cease to astound me.

 “I try to create sympathy for my characters, then turn the monsters loose.”

I must confess, I have read very little of the works by King, but I am familiar with his style based on the movie renditions of some of his more famous work. He is definitely one of those authors who can create some of the most memorable characters, and even though some people may not be too happy about it, he won’t hesitate to kill them off, or turn them into something that turned your love for the character into hate and anger. The mark of a good writer is being able to manipulate our emotions; knowing in which direction to take the story in order to evoke a specific thought in the readers mind.

In light of this weeks quote, here is my question for all of you lovely booknerds:

Question: Which author do you feel is the best at this style of story writing? 

Leave your thoughts in the comments below, or on my blogs facebook page, and until next time, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

March 8, 2015 Posted by | Inspirational Words from Authors, Words of Wisdom | , , , , | Leave a comment

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