September 3rd, 2015

yellow roses

August 2015 reading

August 2015 reading:

35. The Maze Runner, by James Dashner (384 pages)
Thomas finds himself in a box, lifted toward the Glade, with no memories otherwise. Beyond the Glade lies a maze, filled with Grievers waiting to kill or force an unlucky victim into the Changing, if they're lucky. Soon after Thomas arrives, though, something changes; an unscheduled person is brought up from the Box. A girl. And that's just the beginning, because the Maze is ending, and there may be no way out. I was engrossed by this, and finished it in one sitting.

36. Endgame, by Nancy Garden (304 pages)
This book was emotionally difficult as a read, in part because I could identify with Gray, as someone who grew up being bullied, sometimes to the extreme, with no support or protection from the school or teachers. This book is raw and honest and the format of the book makes it that much moreso. I cried, a lot, while reading this book.

37. The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green (313 pages)
I may be emotionally compromised for days, but I loved this book. I loved the characters, and was especially enamored of Hazel, a quirky and well-read 16-year-old who is also very aware of her mortality due to the cancer which has almost killed her multiple times. Her world-view, and her ideas on leaving scars and the impact of her existence hurting those around her with her eventual death fascinated me. There were so many things I loved about this, especially the beautiful descriptions--the bleached rose-petal "snow," for instance. And the banter between Hazel and Augustus throughout felt very true to life. I will be looking for more of John Green's books, though it's possible this, like the fictional book referenced in these pages, is the best of his work.

38. Escape from Memory, by Margaret Peterson Haddix (224 pages)
Kira is just a normal girl who moved from California to a small town in Ohio when she was very young--or so she thought, until she was hypnotized by friends at a sleepover and very different memories come to the surface. Little does she know that asking her mother about them will trigger a series of events and nothing will ever be the same again. Fun book to read, but I felt I wanted more.

39. Teardrop, by Lauren Kate (441 pages)
Eureka has lost her mother to a rogue wave that almost took her life as well, and it's left her in a deep depression and ostracized from her small Louisiana town. A boy named Ander wanders into her life, seeming familiar for reasons she can't identify. She inherits items she doesn't understand from her mother, and her childhood friend abruptly changes into someone she barely recognizes. It seems destiny is coming for her. Occasionally dragged a bit, but overall was a good read. Looking forward to reading the second in the series.

40. I am Number Four, by Pittacus Lore (440 pages)
Four lives with a secret; he is one of the few surviving members of his planet, Lorien, waiting for his Legacy powers to develop so he and the others can take their home back and punish its destroyers. In the meantime, he is on Earth, hiding his powers and from the evil which seeks to destroy Lorien's only hopes. He and his keeper, Henri, must start over with new identities after the scar indicating Number Three has been killed appears on his leg, and they wind up in the small town of Paradise, Ohio--just in time for his Legacies to start appearing. Finally, "John Smith" feels at home, but it's not meant to be permanent, just as he and his kind can't hide their differences forever. But he's about to find he's not alone. Enjoyable summer read, and want to read the next.

41. Incarceron, by Catherine Fisher (442 pages)
Finn woke up three years ago with no memory in the depths of Incarceron, known as Cellborn and Starseer because he has fits and remembers the stars. Claudia's father is Warden of Incarceron, and her life is decided for her; she will marry a terrible man and become Queen at her father's bidding. Fate is about to bring them crashing together. Dragged a bit at the beginning, but picked up quickly. I like the interesting philosophical ideas hinted at within too. Added intrigue.

August pages: 2,548

Pages to date: 13,235

Progress: 41/52

August 2015 comics/manga reading:

134. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 21, by Hiromu Arakawa (183 pages)
135. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 22, by Hiromu Arakawa (179 pages)
136. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 23, by Hiromu Arakawa (191 pages)
137. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 24, by Hiromu Arakawa (187 pages)
138. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 25, by Hiromu Arakawa (187 pages)
139. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 26, by Hiromu Arakawa (193 pages)
140. Fullmetal Alchemist: Volume 27, by Hiromu Arakawa (220 pages)
141. Crossed: Volume 4, by Garth Ennis (240 pages)
142. Star Trek: Countdown, by Roberto Orci (98 pages)
143. Star Trek: Countdown to Darkness, by Roberto Orci (104 pages)
144. Caliban, by Garth Ennis (176 pages)
145. Captain Marvel, Volume 1: Higher, Further, Faster, More, by Kelly Sue DeConnick (136 pages)
146. Revival: Volume 4, by Tim Seeley (128 pages)
147. Rocket Raccoon: Volume 1, by Skottie Young (136 pages)
148. Case Closed: Volume 42, by Gosho Aoyama (200 pages)
149. Case Closed: Volume 43, by Gosho Aoyama (200 pages)
150. Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic, by Alison Bechdel (232 pages)
151. The Dresden Files: Fool Moon Volume 2, by Mark Powers (120 pages)
152. Thor: Volume 1, Goddess of Thunder, by Jason Aaron (136 pages)
153. Black Butler: Volume 20, by Yana Toboso (178 pages)
154. Suicide Squad: Volume 2, by Adam Glass (192 pages)
155. Case Closed: Volume 44, by Gosho Aoyama (200 pages)
156. Scalped: Volume 8, by Jason Aaron (192 pages)
157. Kamisama Kiss, by Julietta Suzuki (200 pages)

August pages: 4,208

Pages to date: 28,305

Progress: 157/365
Dead Dog Cat

(no subject)

As we open a new month, I finished reading a couple of shorter works.

First was Pirates to Pyramids: Las Vegas Taxi Tales which is a collection of stories, some from the author's first hand observation, some from what he was told by his passengers, and some that are from the history of Las Vegas. Short, sweet, and to the point, the book does a pretty good job of informing and entertaining. Amusing if you care to learn a bit about Las Vegas.

Then, I had searched Harry Turtledove's Wikipedia page, and I found a list of his shorter works which were to my surprise downloadable from various sources. So I went on a downloading rampage, but didn't immediately read them. This is one of the first that I found, called The Eighth-Grade History Class Visits the Hebrew Home for the Aging in which a class of middle school students talks to a woman about her experiences in WWII. As you would expect from Turtledove, an expert in alternate histories, there's a twist. It's a short story, so a very fast read, and worth it.