Sunday, 1 July 2012

2012 Reading Challenge: Eleven Books Down!


The first book, or rather chapter, in question is Free Four which is a chapter from Divergent re-written from Four's point of view. I'm not sure whether it should really count towards my challenge however Goodreads says it does so for now I'm including it too. After feeling slightly disappointed by Divergent I was surprised to find that I loved Free Four. I felt the same way about Four as I did about Peeta after reading The Hunger Games; I wanted to hear his side of the story. Interestingly the chapter that author Veronica Roth chose to show us from Four's side was from the Dauntless intiation rather than later in the story. It was particularly intriguing to read about his motives and to find out why he ended up as a trainer in the first place. Even though it was only one chapter Free Four got me excited about continuing with this series. You can read Free Four on Facebook here.

When I got my Kindle the next day I knew exactly what my first book should be; Insurgent. I'm probably being totally lame with my choices for the challenge so far but I can't deny that I enjoyed it and I definitely wasn't expecting that at all. I've watched and read lots of reviews but I'm yet to find anyone else who enjoyed this sequel more than it's predecessor. For me Divergent was just the set up that you have to work through to get to the real story. Yes, it was an intriguing start but I was waiting for something bigger to happen and in Insurgent it did. Either way I'll be re-reading both of these when the challenge is over and of course picking up the final installment when its released next year.

Taking a break from the YA fiction for my second Kindle read and ninth book in the challenge I turned to The Great Gatsby. I already have plans to see the Baz Luhrmann film adaptation (the trailer is interesting) which is due for release in the UK in December so I'm doing things the "right" way round for once and reading it beforehand. If I'm being completely honest I didn't find the first two chapters very captivating but by the third, a party at Gatsby's house, it picked up. That may not sound too bad at first but it is the third chapter in a nine chapter book so I would consider that a little tricky to get into. I think the problem for me was that I didn't particularly like any of the characters. It sounds ridiculous but I felt the same way about The Great Gatsby as I do about How I Met Your Mother; it's not terrible, I'll watch it but I'm not invested because I don't care for any of the characters (sorry HIMYM fans!). It was however nice to read something a bit different and I'll be keeping it in mind when I watch the film.

Book ten was a short ebook I heard about through Sanne's Youtube channel (booksandquills) called Zombicorns. It only took a short time to read through but I really enjoyed it and I actually wish it had been a longer and fuller story. I particularly loved John Green's writing style so I may pick up another of his books, possibly Looking For Alaska which a few of you have recommended to me already. If you have a spare hour to read it you can download Zombicorns for free here.

Since books seven through ten were all digital I decided to return to the paperbacks for book eleven. That book was Emma and the Vampires, one of the Jane Austen undead novels. Whilst I know the plot well, and not just because of the amazingness that is Clueless, I've actually never read the original. Aside from a few couple-of-sentence vampire attacks and a plan to rid Hartfield of wild vampires their prescence was, well, a bit pointless really. In addition to that there was the quite implausible fact that none of the human residents seemed to be able to put two and two together and realise that their friends, who have bright red eyes and don't sleep or eat, are in fact vampires themselves. I enjoyed the story itself but not enough was changed from the original plot and after about a third of the way through the half-hearted inclusion of vampires just became irritating. If you're interested in the story of Emma, pick up the original!

I'm not sure whether I should be asking you guys to recommend me something to swiftly steer me away from the dystopian fiction or to send me forward toward more? I'll let you decide...

You can read about books 1-6 here.
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