How could a series possibly be so consistently amazing from beginning to end? In the thrilling finale (?) to the flawless Shapeshifter series, Dax’s dad finally gets into contact, and Dax is let into the shocking secrets that all his friends have been drugged and inserted with a tracker chip that does more than track the students. Then in a terrifying scene, the Colas we have grown to love and sympathise with over the course of the five books are kidnapped by traitorous workers, on course to be sold on the black market for their abilities. The premise of these books never disappoint me, since they are always so grand, and unlike so many authors the threat is so real and true here, because Sparkes has proven that she has the guts to make irreversible changes to characters who’ve done nothing but good, like Luke whose tongue was viciously ripped out of his mouth by HIS OWN SISTER, and is rendered a mute here. The ruthlessness of the series can be shown by this one quote by one of Dax’s teachers:
‘Need I remind you that you and several of your friends have come very close to being drowned, electrocuted, shot, buried alive, and indeed, crucified in the past two or three years?’ And that’s not even the full list. Continue reading “Stirring the Storm (The Shapeshifter, #5) – Spoiler Review”
The End by Lemony Snicket
Though not entirely satisfying, this book is a very clever way to end the series. I love how Snicket repeatedly reinforces the fact that none of these stories can truly be finished, which just leaves us wanting more than what we started with. I was really surprised that Count Olaf took a backseat in this book, which slightly downplayed his death for me. It is so unfair that he got to die happy after getting to kiss Kit Snicket, after all he has done to everyone. It is very frustrating that we didn’t get to see the the Quagmires again, making it feel like we were cheated out of a plotline as they only act as a mcguffin. The final section of chapter thirteen is such a perfectly peaceful way to end, and really I would much prefer to think the Baudelaires grew up with Beatrice on the island. It is interesting that the whole series avoids saying Lemony’s name until the end of this book. I have come to realise that the entire series didn’t answer any questions, which is the entire point. Snicket didn’t want me to start it, so I cannot complain now that I’ve finished it.
Rating – 4/5
John Steinbeck is a strange author. Perhaps it is because of the time of writing, or maybe because of his own personal experiences, but his stories don’t follow any rules. First of all, the story is plain. It’s one dimensional . Throughout many parts, the characters simply blurt out their emotions and spell out their motivations each letter at a time leaving nothing for the reader to infer. Making Lennie’s death at the end very predictable at the end, though some would call that foreshadowing. The Dust Bowl barely played a part in the story, and there really wasn’t much significance in the job searching aspect. Perhaps being forced to read this book played a role in my dislike of it, but I do not recommend it.
Rating – 2/5
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
This book is a blast from the past. Not my past, but you know. The cover and the title are entirely irrelevant to the novel. The story of the Joad family migrating to California has an interesting beginning, and Steinbeck is skilled with how he keeps sympathy for our main character Tom the entire way through despite him having him killed a man. The characters were unique and by far the most interesting is Casy, a renounced priest who joins the Joads, who struggles with internal conflict about his religion and job the entire way through. Also when the fiance leaves his pregnant woman I really, really thought he would come back, but he didn’t, proving how deeply rooted in reality this book is. This book doesn’t shy away from more mature themes, and discusses themes like abandonment, disability, and being suicidal head on. It made me question what the point of all this was, and what they are accomplishing by even trying to stay alive. The most moving part is when the baby dies at the end. It only reinforces the fact that all the stress we as humans go through is ultimately pointless, proving Steinbeck really does want to leave us unsatisfied. If a sequel came out, I would read it. It did have a lot of filler, but the book is grounded, gritty and most of all, it’s human.
Rating – 4/5
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne
This is a very sweet book. It tells the tale of a young boy called Bruno who moves next door to a concentration camp until it’s only a gate separating him from his complete polar opposite, and yet his best friend.
Continue reading “The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas – SPOILER Review”
I would be devestated if I found out I was responsible for spoiling some on this marvellous book, so SPOILERS AHEAD. You have been warned.
Continue reading “Rebels of Eden – SPOILER REVIEW”
Battle of the Beetles by M.G. Leonard
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD! Read at your own risk.
Battle of the beetles is a brilliant mystery road-trip type story about a world in which a half beetle-human hybrid commands a genetically engineered beetle army to hold the planet on siege. Just the description alone sounds epic. And I think that’s the word to describe this. Epic.
Continue reading “Battle of the Beetles – SPOILER Review”