Monthly Archives: July 2012

Cassandra Clare double feature!

Ok, so I’ve been in a bit of a Cassandra Clare reading frenzy – not only have I just read City of Lost Souls, but I’m also up to date with the prequel series, having just finished Clockwork Prince.  I figured I’d give you two for the price of one and review both books.

Every time I read the latest book by Ms Clare I have the same fear – will I remember what was going on, who was fighting who and who was snogging who from last time? It always amazes me that it never takes more than a few pages to get right back into both series, and there are plenty of helpful recaps along the way. In my head, I’ve got this voice saying: ‘previously, in the Mortal Instruments/Infernal Devices…’ And yes, it’s usually in the Law and Order guy’s voice.

But I digress. The question is, are the latest offerings any good? Well, yes. And no.  I won’t deny that these stories are such fun to read; they’ve got action, romance, laughs, you name it. Even though each book is big enough to double as a hand weight, it never takes me too long to get through them.

With regard to City of Lost Souls, I have to say that I couldn’t help thinking ‘really? Haven’t we done all this before?’. I don’t think this episode is the strongest of the series.  Six books is a long time to keep two lovers apart and I’m starting to tire of Clary and Jace. Clary is becoming a bit of a whiner in this book and makes some really stupid decisions, and Ms Clare’s finale (sort of spoiler alert but not really) smacks of previous endings.  Seems to me there’s a bit of recycling going on! Still, I’ll be interested to see how it all comes to a close in book six. I was far more interested in the development of Isobelle and Simon’s and Alec and Magnus’ relationships. I know other readers believe these relationships pale in comparison to the fiery passion of Clary and Jace, but I actually (and ironically) find the witty repartee of these four more, well, human.

Clockwork Prince is a different kettle of fish altogether. Maybe it’s because the series is shorter and there are fewer characters to keep track of, but I LOVE this series. I find Tessa a far more palatable heroine than Clary and the love triangle going on between her, Jem and Will is exquisite – I found myself shouting ‘NO!’ at some points during the novel.  There is something about the setting of the Victorian era – maybe it’s just because everyone is so damn polite and proper – that makes this series far more interesting and dangerous.  Underneath the waistcoats and corsets are characters that have more layers and greater depth.  Generally, I find the course of events far less predictable that I do in the Mortal Instruments series.

At the end of the day, these are just my opinions. I know that both these series are beloved by so many, so I’m going to keep the trash talk to a minimum, suffice to say: Clockwork Prince = big thumbs up and City of Lost Souls = ok with a touch of meh.

Happy Reading! Ms White 🙂

Movie Trailer: The Life of Pi

For those of you who have read Yann Martel’s Life of Pi, you’ll understand how incredible it is that someone has decided to make a film of it. Ang Lee, who has directed award winning films like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Brokeback Mountain, has taken on this challenge, and already there is Oscar buzz surrounding the film – and it hasn’t even been released yet! Watch the trailer below and click on the link to the official film website to check it out:

Life of Pi official film website

We have several copied of Life of Pi in the library, so come and borrow one today!

Book Review: Socks Are Not Enough (If That’s All You’re Wearing)

With a title like this, you hardly expect Mark Lowery’s book to be serious. And it’s not, for the most part. Firstly, may I just say that ‘Socks Are Not Enough If That’s All You’re Wearing’ is probably the best title EVER, and if you think this is a book about nudity – you’re dead right.

Poor Michael Swarbrick’s life is pretty dodgy at the moment. He’s got a horrible older brother, a best friend who’s both disgusting and idiotic, and it turns out that his parents are nudists. In the week that he discovers this rather alarming fact, Michael becomes embroiled in a situation that ends up with his mum arrested for public nudity, his brother shipped off to Australia and a possible stalking charge against him.

This book is hilarious; it’s written from the point of view of Michael himself. After all his traumas, he’s sent off for counselling sessions with Miss O’Malley. In these sessions, instead of talking, he writes down his story, and the result is fabulous. Michael’s story is very funny, and peppered with observations and little side-tracks about Miss O’Malley and ‘Chas’, the psychologist. At first, you tend to think of Michael as a bit of a loser, but in the end, you can’t help but barrack for him as he tries to work through his issues. This book is recommended to anyone who wants a laugh, and if you read it and are keen for more, check out:

http://twitter.com/realmswarbrick

Happy Reading! Ms White 🙂

Book Review: Erebos

Welcome to Term 3! Here’s a review of a great new book I read over the hols.

Erebos by Ursula Poznanski

Erebos is one of those books that’s currently taking the reading world by storm. If you want a book that is exciting, thrilling and just a little bit creepy, this is it. But be warned: enter at your own risk. You won’t be able to put this book down!

Almost everyone at school seems to be playing a mysterious new computer game called ‘Erebos’ – but no-one’s talking about it. When Nick finally gets his hands on a copy, he can see what all the fuss is about. Erebos is highly addictive and like no other game Nick has ever played before. But soon, the line between the digital world and the real world becomes blurred. Players are asked to carry out actions in the real world in order to advance further in the game. As Nick gets drawn deeper into the world of Erebos, his sense of right and wrong begin to crumble and the game becomes more and more sinister.

This book was originally written in German but has been translated into over 20 languages, including English. There’s a reason for this – it’s utterly captivating. Like the computer game in the story, the book itself is addictive. There are a multitude of twists and turns that will keep you guessing to the very end.

This is a great read on its own or a fabulous supplement to any student who is studying ‘Whose Reality’. Highly recommended.

Happy Reading! Ms White 🙂