Ah – my Downton Abbey addiction can be revived! This month’s challenge is Graphic Novels, and I was lucky that my coworker recommended this title to me. It is a parody, poking fun at a variety of aspects of the show, particularly, the aristocracy’s treatment of their servants. The illustrator does an excellent job of drawing characters with distinctly recognizable physical characteristics of the TV characters. Even the names are clever. Bates is Gates, Thomas Barrow is Thompson Sparrow, Anna is Joanna, Daisy is Poppy. Funny stuff!
In post-apocalyptic Los Angeles, two highly intelligent teenagers are working for opposing sides. Rebel, Day was to have been killed when he supposedly failed his trials, but lives on the streets with, helping his family survive, as well as thumbing his nose at the Republic, by wreaking havoc. He is the Republic’s Most Wanted Criminal, Not because his crimes are heinous, but because they make the Republic look bad.
On the other side is child prodigy June, assigned the task of hunting down Day, because he supposedly killed June’s brother Metias.
This is a fast-paced action book, with a romance that is at turns cute and then annoying.
I disliked the number of torture/terrorizing scenes and thus will NOT read the 2 sequels..
What a delightful and fun read. Teenager Wade is living in the US about 2014’s, in a post energy world. He lives in the stacks – stacks of trailers/mobile homes linked together with steel poles, and whatever jetsam is lying around, his trailer is on the 32nd level, and actually receives a little sunlight. His aunt steals his food vouchers. He has found a safeplace at the bottom of a mound of abandoned vehicles (no gas left), which he crawls into every day hooks into the Oasis (FB on steroids) with a visor and haptic glove and goes to school. This is the environment. The multibillionaire, James Haliday who invented the Oasis and numerous other internet games died 5 years ago and set up a series of challenges, the winner will inherit the billions. Wade is one of several hunters searching for the 1st key. Haliday loved the 80’s so the hunters as well as the readers get to share in 80’s culture. Personally, I don’t think I’m very in touch with pop culture, but was amazed at all the culture references I caught – Blade Runner, LadyHawke, War Games, John Hughes movies, Excalibur, Gary Gygax, D & D, etc.
I REALLY enjoyed this book! and have recommended it to all sorts of people.
Wild and willful Brownwyn Hyatt is back from the Iraq war. There are omens that her mother is likely to die, and a haint is wanting to talk to her. Will it be possible to change the future and keep her mom alive. Or if her Mom does die, will Brownwyn be able to remember her musical skills in order to learn her Mother’s song. Will she be able to resist the temptation of her old boyfriend, bad-boy, Dwight? It also includes the storylines of a Christian minister trying to make inroads into this isolated community of people called the Tufa. And it includes the storyline of Don Swayback, 1/8th Tufa, who comes back to his roots.
A creative retelling of Cinderella – with a little Tam Lin thrown in. Ash becomes an indentured servant to her stepmother when her father’s debts come due. She sees fairyland as an escape from her drudgery and abuse. The fairy Sidhean who could steal her away from mortals is reluctant to do so, seemingly because he is cursed to love her and have his heart broken. Eventually, Ash falls in love with the Kings Huntress, and realizes, she might want to stay in the mortal realm. Enjoyable, fast-paced read.
Not all goes as planned, first, they weren’t sure the dragon still existed, since no one had seen him. Then it turns out the dragon really didn’t want to deal with humans, he was too old, and humans too dangerous. Then it turns out that dragons horde very different items depending on their own particular interest. This particular dragon hordes shoes. The protagonist Creel, gets a pair of shoes from the dragon, shoes with special powers. A delightful tale, I did think back to the Stolen Child, about the theme, enjoying what you’ve got, when Creel was living in the dragon’s cave, eating well, pleasant company, and able to embroider to her heart’s content. To someone who would love more time to craft, it sounded idea.. Not as good as the other 2 books I’ve read by Day, the pacing was a bit too intense towards the end for me.
Clarissa Pinkola Estes examines archetypal themes in fairy tales relevant to unleashing creativity and letting your unique talents blossom. Estes uses a combination of Jungian psychology together with family wisdom to explain the significance of various tales. I learned that she had been held at gunpoint down in Guatemala, during a period of civil unrest, listening to her inner voice/angel, she eventually started singing to her kidnappers, who let her go, saying the singing was driving them nuts. She finishes each chapter with a blessing. I really liked this title, As it was so deep & rich, I wouldn’t want to read several back to back. I really enjoyed this book, & feel like I benefited from her wisdom.
This was a mixed bag of tales. Some lived up to the advertising, others were less successful. One of the problems I had with some of the tales, is telling me how smart the protagonist is, and then all she did was sprinkle magic fairy dust that she had from somewhere to solve all the villages problems. I realize it is more difficult to show instead of tell, in short tales, but maybe you can’t have short fairy tales that cannot be shown, but must be told. I did enjoy the story Janet Burd (a Tam Lin variation), as well as the Mollee Whoppee story.
Another delightful retelling of a fairy tale by Jessica Day George, this time, we revisit the story Cinderella. In this version it is the Fairy Godmother who is wicked, and Eleanora (Cinderella) is but a victim. The protagonist is Poppy one of the Twelve Dancing Princesses from an earlier book. I think I must read all of this author’s books – they are enchanting!
Odd is a kid who smiles all the time, even after his father dies. The village people do Not understand him. Then he attempts to use his father’s giant axe, and in the process injures his leg; he builds himself a crutch and drags himself home. His mother remarries a man who doesn’t care for Odd. But Odd perseveres, using the talents he has, he is able to help out the Norse gods, Odin, Loki, and Thor, who have been turned into different animals. This was a fun short read.
A reinterpretation of Snow White. In this fractured version, the protagonist, an innkeeper’s daughter, is a larger girl who is sometimes treated poorly by other people because of her looks. However, she has the most beautiful voice in the kingdom. This was well written and challenged our culture’s obsession with good looks, asking the reader to question our assumptions we make based on physical attractiveness.
A satire on Political Correctness covering a number of common fairy tales. In one the helpful woodsman gets his head chopped off, for intruding and doubting that Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf, couldn’t work out their own problems. It was ok, I did learn some things about discrimination and different ways of viewing the world.
A wonderful entrancing story! a hobgoblin, trades places with the real Henry Day, getting a chance to life out a human life, after waiting about 100 years for his turn. The previous Henry Day, now renamed Anaday, struggles to make sense of his world, and to fit in with the band of hobgoblins. Both characters struggle to figure out what to do with the lives that they have. I like the fact that Donohue took a familiar narrative, that of the stolen/exchanged child, and tackled deeper questions of what it means to live a meaningful life. This book reminded me of both and Kazuo Ishiguro’s “Never Let me Go” as well as Adam Phillips’ book Missing Out (which had too much psychoanalysis for me to finish).