Yay! First week of NaNoReaMo is over, and I'm happy to say that I'm actually a little bit ahead of schedule. Woot. It has been quite the week of reading, and today I get to share the 3 books I picked from my 12. You know, if you haven't guessed by my tweets.
Just so you know, I will not be doing summaries. So if you want to know more about a book's plot, click the link for the Amazon page.
Here we go!
1. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
I'm still not sure what I should say about this book. Was it well-written? I think so. Compelling? Definitely a page turner. Collins is the master of the pager turner. Did it have an impact on me? Definitely.
But I have a hard time saying I liked the book. It seems wrong to say that I enjoyed reading about Katniss becoming even more of a pawn, losing everything she cared about, and descending into, well, insanity. I didn't enjoy this journey. It was hard to read. Painful to see her go through even more when she'd already suffered so much. A little frustrating to realize that she would never actually be happy, but just a little less broken.
That said, I think Collins accomplished what she set out to do. I don't think she ever intended this series to be a hero story or a love triangle or whatever, as much as the readers might have tried to see it this way (which actually says a lot about our media-fed minds in and of itself). The final installment made it very clear that this was a story about war and grayness and the ugly side of humanity. Can't say I love it because I'm totally a sparkles and happy endings kind of girl, but I do respect it. I respect it a lot.
2. Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
I knew I would love this book, I just didn't know that love would manifest as a raging passion. It has everything I love in a story—clever, funny MC, a boarding school (reform school, actually), magic, and a page turning mystery. Oh yeah, and a cute boy.
I adore books that can be both tense and funny. It's an extremely hard thing to do, actually. Believe me, I've tried it. The line you walk is thinner than a tightrope, but it's worth it. I think we need more books with a little humor in them. I'm so over the angst.
I told Kiersten that if Paranormalcy and Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls series had a baby, it would be Hex Hall. I completely stand by this. It's such a beautiful baby, and I can't wait for Demonglass! No, seriously, if anyone knows how I can get a hold of Demonglass, please tell me.
3. Scarlet Fever by Maureen Johnson
I so enjoyed Suite Scarlett, which I actually read last year for NaNoReaMo! If it's possible, I think I like the sequel more. I gobbled it up, losing myself once again in Scarlett's New York.
One of my favorite parts of this series is Maureen's portrayal of New York. I must admit the usual high society scandal stuff never gets me excited. It never seemed real to me. I could never picture that this was all New York was about. This series is different. I've never felt this IN New York while reading, and I've never had such an appreciation for the city (total mountain girl here). New York feels real to me in this series, with all it's funny quirks and interesting people.
Also, I couldn't stop laughing. Every page seemed to have some funny commentary or witty dialogue or hilarious turn of events. And Murry the dog? He might possibly be my favorite new character.
The only complaint I have is the total cliff hanger ending. Oh, I'm in agony of how cliffhangered I am! I could have kept reading all night. But I was forced to stop, stranded in suspense for who knows how long. *Sigh* I guess that's not so bad. It just means the book was freaking awesome and I want more right now. This is the trouble with series. You'd think I'd learn my lesson and wait until they were all out to start reading.
There you have it! Week 1 down, and I've already picked the first book of Week 2. Yes, it's the FINAL BOOK in a series. I am determined to have some resolution to at least one story this week! As for the other two I'm reading, it'll be a surprise even for me.
If you've been reading along with me, let me know so I can check out your lists! I'm always on the look out for more wonderful books. Who isn't?