Monthly Archives: April 2016

Missoula Review

Standard

Missoula by Jon Krakauer is a deeply emotional book. I couldn’t read continuously. I had to read something between sections. But how do you read a book about rape continuously and it not affect you? Krakauer is a nonfiction writer that I really appreciate and can read easily. Even though it took me like 2 months to read.

My last two years of college I went to college in a town that was sixty or so miles from Montana so this whole book happened relatively close to home. Except this happened in Missoula, which is western Montana and Montana is a huge state. When I was in Hungary, the couple that ran my bible study was from Montana and he would give me crap about being from North Dakota. And now they’re both moving to Ethiopia and I’m bitter even though I don’t live in Hungary anymore. Anyway, back to my point. I was thinking about being in college while reading this book because these were young women in college. When I was in college, it was right before the oil boom and I felt safe. I wasn’t a partier so I didn’t have to worry about being raped by someone there. I locked my door. Even when my roommate had random guys over, I didn’t feel like I was in danger. But then I was asleep most of the time she brought home guys and I had a different bedroom and she was better when the third roommate moved in. Looking back, I don’t know why I didn’t feel more in danger. There’s still creepers out there. Oh the ignorance of youth.

How does this book like this not break your heart? How does this book of this subject even exist? In the case of this book, alcohol is the reason for this book. It did remind me of how much athletes were adored in this book. And the book talks about how they went a little crazy an how it’s part of the culture. It’s true. I have seen it in high school and college. Even last night, a kid from North Dakota got drafted to the Eagles and there was so many people that showed up to drafting parties. I mean, the kid seems like he wouldn’t rape anyone and has a good head on his shoulders but he’s adored here. I think in some cases the adoration goes to a person’s head and it ends like Missoula.

I felt for these girls. I can’t imagine the magnitude of their pain. You can clearly see it in the book. There’s a part about two thirds of the way through where one of the girls is talking to her attacker and I feel like it would be like how I would talk to him, but way more eloquent. I think, by the way that he ended the book, this broke the author’s heart. How could it not?

This is a great book but it’s heartbreaking. It took a lot of me. There’s so much to say about this book but I think you should just read it.

Queen of Shadows Review.

Standard

First of all, that last post has parts of it that, going back, make no sense to me. I’m sorry. My mind farts quite a bit.

I have really been into having full series. Like if I’ll never read the whole series not so much but full series that I’ll read and somewhat enjoy. I’ve slowly been making my way through the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas and just finished Queen of Shadows.

First let me say that these are books I never thought I’d read. They’re a Y.A. fantasy books and usually I get into historical fiction. (and let’s be honest, I get really excited about WWII historical novels. I like war. It’s morbid, I know. But I’ve always been fascinated about it. My senior paper for my history minor was centered in WWII. And is wasn’t that good and I still got a B on it.) I did read and enjoy the Harry Potter series and the Inheritance Cycle but I was in high school when I read those. My tastes have changed some. I felt like I had moved on to more refined things. I have enjoyed these books to a point. Except this one.

Now don’t get me wrong, I didn’t hate this book. I know that to a lot of people this is their favorite book. I did like this book nearer the end. Maybe that’s because I started getting in the swing of reading again. There were to many ‘A’ names. Aedion, Aelin, Arobynn. I had to slow my reading at some points because of the ‘A’ names. And then sometimes I was thinking of Chaol when Rowan was around and Nesryn turned into Nehemia. Names was such an issue for me in this book. Now if I had read this series straight through and I hadn’t read Queen during a reading slump, I may not have had this trouble. I also get frustrated with the witch parts. I know the point of the witches but I don’t want to read about them. I skimmed those parts. And of course Lorcan betrayed them or messed up or whatever. We knew that was going to happen. Let’s not fool ourselves.

 

I am totally Team Chaol. But at this point, I don’t think it’s going to happen with him. It’s more likely with Rowan because let’s face it, Aelin and Rowan are practically married. And there was a point in the book where Chaol saw Rowan help Aelin and was like I should be jealous or something right? I was disappointed because he’s moved on. And I thought he died for a while. That makes me not happy. I was mad for a while. How could Chaol die? He’s too important to the story. I feel like if I wanted a relationship, he’d be the guy I would to relationship with. And Chaol is totally going to get it on with what’s her face. Yup. That’s right. I just called her what’s her face.

Aelin learned how to make friends that’s impressive. She’s let down her guard from the first book which can be a good or bad thing. Depending on the situation. It’s taken me forever to switch to Aelin and not Caelena. I spent a good portion of the series, and this book, thinking Caelena. She does accept the responsibility with the name. I don’t mind her but I do like her with Chaol more. With Chaol, she was a youthful happy rather than a more mature happy with Rowan. I think that the way the whole relationship thing has ended is good. Even though it’s not how I want it. I don’t like to be wrong and I’m still letting go of that.

There were parts of this book that I felt were unnecessary. There’s a part near the end of the book between Rowan and Aelin that had no point for me. No, that’s a lie. I do understand what some of these parts are for I just am impatient for the resolution of things. As of now, I think I heard this is going to be a 6 book series and this is only book 4. I wonder though if some of the things that she has in some of these books, especially this one, is just trying to make them longer and to keep the series longer.

There’s good running themes in this series about freedom and friendship. Now I know I’ve sucked in the friendship category the past year and a half like so sometimes the friends’ thing bothered me because I know I’ve sucked. And the freedom thing is always a nice thing to be reminded of because to be a prisoner would suck.

Yes, I will continue this series just to see how it ends even though I am getting bored with it.

Just Another Kid Review like thing

Standard

I do have to apologize for my absence. Lots of things going on. I had a small grass fire in my yard, there was Easter and a small anxiety spell there. (It was nothing major, just a need to leave the table and not be trapped.) I’m reorganizing my book shelves so that genres are somewhat together but with my setup now, it’s not going to happen. If anyone wants to get me big bookcases, I’d be in love with you forever. I also have had a reading slump. I recently talked about what a reading slump is to me compared to someone who doesn’t like to read. It’s radically different. It’s not fun for me. I, in general, needed some time to clear my head and not have so many words in it. And I kind of broke my glasses so I will be chilling with the reading until they’re replaced or fixed because my old glasses aren’t quite the right script. So I recently read and finished Just Another Kid by Torey Hayden. I had a few hours before meeting someone for coffee so I sat at a library and read 200 pages or so.

This book is an interesting book. It’s about Hayden’s last year of teaching and she had 6 ‘emotionally damaged children’. (coming straight from the back of the book) Three are from war torn Ireland and the other three are from various situations. It was interesting to me read this after teaching one year. And I know I will never fully understand teaching and I have a great appreciation for good teachers, especially special education teachers. I know I described the children Hayden taught as emotionally damaged but they were ideally in special education. I liked reading how she dealt with each kid. Some kids weren’t talked about as much and I think that was because some didn’t need as much help as some of the others. Not only did the children need help but some of the parents as well. It’s interesting how sometimes the parents need just as much help as the kids. I feel like there’s a lot of ‘well, it’s the parents’ fault that there kid is messed up’. I know, because I’ve said it as well. But it’s taken me a long time to realize that sometimes there needs to be an intervention. I liked how Hayden handled the parent situation(s). It would have been easy for her to step back because she was leaving as soon as she could but she made the right decision and helped. I appreciate the real life circumstances. I also liked the updates at the end of the book. I only wish that there was an updated update. Like this was published 28 years ago and the updates are from 23 years ago. I kind of wanted a 20 year update. Is that wrong of me?

Recently I’ve been thinking about violence that kids have seen. I just re-watched the second Mockingjay movie. When I watched it in theaters, I had a hard time sitting through it. Especially the part when they lift up their children and try to get them to safety and then there’s the scene where the little kid is yelling at their dead parent. I literally was grabbing onto my chair so I wouldn’t leave the theater and abandon the friend I was with. She doesn’t know about my random spurts of nervousness and I keep that to myself with a lot of people. Anyway, the reason I brought that up is that I was comparing The Hunger Games trilogy with the three Irish kids in this book. Yes, I know the Hunger Games is fabricated. There’s different trauma in each book. In the Hunger Games, you see trauma happen as things unfold. In Hayden’s book, you see the trauma after the main activity has already occurred. And not to knock Collins’ work, because I think she did a very good job at showing how fragile a person can be, Hayden’s book was more realistic. (Yes again, one story is based off real events and the other isn’t. Of course there’s going to be a difference.) In my little area of the world, there aren’t many kids that have had traumatic events and I think literature is a good way to show that and to teach kids empathy. Now, I wouldn’t give Hayden’s work to the same kid I would the Hunger Games. They are at different reading levels and they are at different realities.

Overall it’s a good book. It is not a quick read. If I re-read this book, I would take it a lot slower. But, I had a few hours to waste while waiting for someone to be done giving music lessons. Such is life.