Matched – Book Review

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Finished reading:

Matched (Matched Book 1)

by Ally Condie

★★★★

Expectation

When I picked this up I knew it was a trendy dystopian YA book series. I try to avoid the genre and I’m really not a fan of futuristic or dystopian novels. I had really low expectations and the only reason I picked it up was that it was a newly translated arrival to the bookstore I work in.

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Summary

This book starts out really sweet with a main character a girl named Cassia going trough a certain rite of passage ritual – being matched to a boy who will be her future life companion.

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The story deals with futuristic society that has made life more simple and easier. A place where cooks don’t need to know math and were programmers don’t need to know how to cook. Everything is matched and prioritized by person’s abilities. It makes a case for nurturing the preferences we were born with. It all has a nice ring to it.

As the story progresses the picture perfect life starts to crack and dim around the edges. To make life simple and easy there were some sacrifices made in the past. And the one that made me hurt the most were in making life simpler society decided that works of art will be culled in number where only one hundred of each remain.

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Even thinking about such censorship and destruction makes me sad. It is in a way reminder of cultural destruction trough the past and that happening today. This made parts of the book that cites poetry endearing and emotional experience.

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On the side note I liked the characters and I think they were well written. Especially some minor characters in the background. The chemistry between the major characters is great and the budding love theme with coming of age is very well presented. There is a love triangle in this one and I liked the surprises in characters choices trough the book.

Conclusion

I liked the book and I surprised myself with how much I liked it. I’m genuinely interested in next two books and will keep up with this book series!

Some scenes reminded me of Equilibrium movie and Grammatron Clerics in white suits minus the guns and swords. Here is a mostly weaponless eye candy Christian Bale from Equilibrium movie!

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Spring pile of books!

I have gathered some of my books with the colors that represent spring time for me. The colors are green and yellow.

Green is for grass and budding trees, I like green color it calms me down. But I must admit it is a bit strange seeing it on a book cover – I still don’t think I have that many green books.

Yellow is for spring sun warming and shining on the green budding nature.

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Reading in progress – March 2016

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I’ve actually cleared up most of my reading from February and started on some new and exciting books. Here are the books that are in the category reading in progress at the moment.

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Dead Heat (Alpha & Omega book 4) by Patricia Briggs

125 out of 326 pages

I got this book just this month and couldn’t wait to start reading it. Patricia Briggs is one of my favorite authors and love her characters. I love what I’ve read so far and the way how with every Alpha & Omega and Mercy Thompson book world the author is created changes and each new book reflect those changes. I love that feel of a really rich world building in urban fantasy series.

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Matched (Matched book 1) by Ally Condie

112 out of 240 pages

This is one of the new arrivals to the bookstore. I’m reading a Croatian translation and so far I have unusually little to none complaints. I really didn’t think I was going to like it so much since I’m not a fan of futuristic YA genre – I find them mostly depressive. I like how expressive the author got with some parts of the book and describing the influence of poetry to the characters.

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March of the Wooden Soldiers (Fables vol 4) by Bill Willingham et al

5 out of 231 pages

I’m slowly going trough this graphic novel series. I’ve finished Vol 3 and I’ve got Vol 5 waiting on the shelf as well. I like how the story goes and I’m a little weirded out  by some characters but I’m interested to see where the story takes me. So far I liked better the Fairest graphic novel spin off than this original series but I’ll just have to read it and see.

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I miss spending the afternoons or any other part of the day reading. I have to many distractions lately. At least BF and I get to spend a little time reading before bed.

Book series goals

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I do love a good book series and sometimes I just get a few books that are part of a series without even finding out much about them. I do this when they fit the fantasy and UF genre I love. And I do this when they are cheap to come by.

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For the moment I will not be discussing the chronic lack of space for the books I find myself in because of these irrational acquires …

After a while I have accumulated alarming number of book series I own and haven’t read trough yet, some I haven’t even started on, and some I just really want to read and don’t even have them on my shelf.

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I would never refuse a book gift and because of it I keep ending up with books that are part of a book series and rarely the first part at that. This way I have gotten a few third books in a trilogy, many second books, one book series I own book number one and number three in hardcover(!) just because they were cheap and look really pretty and now it is impossible to get book two in hardcover since they are old and sold out more than a decade ago!

The list of frustrations goes on and on…

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But then I remembered how good finishing reading a book series makes me feel. Instead of a depression that so many readers online complain about I get a feeling of accomplishment.

In the light of that, here are some book series that would make me feel good finish reading trough. Some of them I started reading ages ago and some I have yet to start on. Some are collecting dust on my bookshelves for far too long and some I have on my Kindle app. I imagine that some I will need to visit a library to get and some will be hard to find. These are my book series goals and finishing any of them will make me happy.

Starting off with a few from my bookshelf, those I have three or more and haven’t started them yet…

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Elminster saga by Ed Greenwood

This one has been on my reading list for years. This year I’ve gotten books one, two, three and five (!) This series is a part of Forgotten Realms universe and I’ve gotten the craving to read it since they added the main character to the Dungeons and Dragons MMO I’ve played. There are about eight books in this series.

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Dark Days by Jocelynn Drake

These first three books I have for a few years now. I found out about them from a Shelfari group I was a part of. Then I had a chance to buy book one and book three really cheap. After that I ordered second book and now I just need to start reading them. There are six books and two prequel novellas in this series. I actually read one novella and liked it!

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Elder Races by Thea Harrison

These were a Christmas present from a work friend. Many bookish friends online have only nice things to say about this book series. I have the first three and there are nine books all together with a bunch of short stories here and there in the series.

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Noble Dead by Barb & J.C. Hendee

These are first three books form one of the three different book series in the Noble Dead Universe. There are three different book series and this one has six books. I got all three on book sale.

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After making a list of all the book series that fit the categories above I managed to pen down more than twenty different book series!

Listing them all down would make this a really long post. And I would much more prefer to use that time to read something 🙂

Hopefully I will be bragging about making progress with some of these book series soon!

Dark Skye – Book Review

 

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Dark Skye (Immortals After Dark Book 15)

by Kresley Cole

★★★

Expectation

I have been an avid reader and collector of the Immortals After Dark book series by Kresley Cole for a while now. I had some issues on finding the book cover picture of the edition I own on the Internet so I made a picture of my own. I love the coloring and the design of these mass market papaerbacks! I’ve gotten myself this book in December last year. I loved the introduction to this book I read in the last one MacRieve.

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Summary

I liked the characters right from the start. I liked their history and their strong life beliefs. Together they had such potential.

For some reason it took me few months to read trough this book when in most cases all the rest from this series I finish in a matter of days. Something was off and I did not click with this story.

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Reading is a personal experience and for some reason I did not enjoy this book. The setting and the characters annoyed me mostly and at times I even felt violated while reading some of the sex scenes…

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I wanted to give it a rating of two but then I read the last thirty pages and felt a bit better about it. What saved it for me was the ending and the part when the focus was on the other relationships in the was world of Immortals after dark and when bits and pieces from the previous books started to click together. Since it passed much time when I read the last book I had to double back and remember some things.

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What made me squeal for joy was that one sentence from my favorite male character Lothaire:

Vrekeners actually exist?

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Conclusion

I did not enjoy this book as much as I hoped. This does not mean I’m going to stop reading this series. I will get my hands on the next book Sweet Ruin when it comes out in MMA this summer. Until then I might find the time and go back to some favorites from the series. This way I can catch up and enjoy the new books more.

Sweet Ruin 

Immortals After Dark book 16

By Kresley Cole

June 2016

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Monthly Reading Review – February 2016

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Monthly Reading Review – February 2016

This February I have read:

Animal Farm (Fables, Vol. 2) by Bill Willingham ★★★★

Moja Ti by Jasna Jasna Žmak ★★★

The Death and Life of Bobby Z by Don Winslow ★★★★

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1. How many books you’ve read last month? Are you happy with the amount you read?

This February I’ve finished only three books. This continues my slow reading at the start of each year. Maybe it has something to do with everything else around me making progress – like kicking on with some New Year resolutions, strangely big amount of projects that are work related.

2. What was the best of all the books you’ve read in February? Any scenes or characters that made a lasting impression?

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3. Were there any not so good books for you last month? What made it hard or not enjoyable to read?

There is not much to choose from this month so I’ll reflect on both questions at the same time: 

The Death and Life of Bobby Z was a nice reading surprise. It is definitely a book for reading on a beach during the summer heat. The whole story is action packed and fun read. 

Animal Farm (Fables, Vol. 2) was a second volume of a graphic novel series I’ve been meaning to read for a while. Like most serial graphic novel it has it’s perks in reading more volumes in a row. For this reason I’ve already borrowed next three volumes!

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Moja ti  was a work related reading I was supposed to make a review on. It is a compilation of short stories in the life of one couple. It was not my usual type of reading and I had some issues with it. The stories were actually very intuitive and emotional. It was not something that can be read fast and I think it made me reflect more and take a slower approach to reading in February. 

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4. How did the books you were reading last month fit in your reading plans if you had any?

Lately all I do is plan my reading but never seem to stick with it. I planned to read more but then again I have a tendency to enjoy my reading in the moment better. This February the plan was to read what I felt like so I can’t really complain about fitting these three books in my plans.

5. Any updates on the series you are reading or are you starting any new series?

I made progress with Fables series and now that I’ve broken the ice after a long break from volume one I think I will catch up with this series a bit more soon. Dark Skye from IAD book series is still reading in progress. 

6. Would you like to recommend any books or authors you’ve been reading this last month?

As a recommendation from February I have The Death and Life of Bobby Z for a fast action read and any Fables themed graphic novel you can find.

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Final thoughts on February

I would compare my February reading with a granny but I think grannies read faster than I did in February.  I still have some overdue reading in progress books. 

Dark Skye (Immortals After Dark, #15) by Kresley Cole

Moć albiura (Saga Albiurana, #1) by Daria Keršić

I kinda missed out on the romance reading in the month of love – must fix that soon…

Am I happy with how things are going slow – NO

Do I acknowledge that I’m in a transitioning period – YES

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