I haven’t posted in well over a week since I’ve been working a lot of hours in the weeks leading up to Christmas and instead of stressing myself out by trying to write a bunch of lengthy reviews, I thought I’d get caught up by just writing some short ones and putting them all in one big post, even if the books are pretty different from each other. There will be a full review of Rainbow Rowell’s Eleanor & Park up soon as well, and then hopefully I’ll be caught up to my reading pace and can get back to a 2-3 posts per week schedule.
Mini Review #1: Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
The Shining was my first King novel and I read it just a few months ago, in September. I liked it. I didn’t love it; I thought it was kind of slow and boring at the beginning, though it did really scare me at the end. I went into its sequel, Doctor Sleep thinking it would be similarly quite boring before terrifying the pants off me, worried that it would take me weeks to finish. I was totally wrong. It was less scary than The Shining (to me anyway, I had a friend not finish it because it scared her and she’d read/seen The Shining) either because I knew what to expect or because the scares are different.
What stood out to me in Doctor Sleep was the characterization. Dan Torrance is just as messed up by the events of The Shining as you would expect him to be, and so you see him struggle with alcoholism, hit rock bottom, and claw his way back up until he finds himself in the position of needing to help someone else. His journey was the core of the book and it was interwoven masterfully with the supernatural adventure that accompanied it, though I thought that the plot point about the connection between him and Abra was a little forced and weird. Overall, though, I really loved this a lot more than I thought I would.
Mini Review #2-Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
This one’s pretty popular in the internet world of book reviews, so you’ve probably heard of it before. Cath is a huge Simon Snow (read: Harry Potter) fan who spends her days writing slash fan fic. She starts college all on her own after her twin, Wren, decides its time for them to get some time apart. Socially anxious Cath then must contend with her aloof roommate and her super-cute maybe-boyfriend, a professor who thinks fan fic is plagiarism, and her family’s many problems.
I really enjoyed Fangirl. Cath is likable and relateable without being too flat or cliche. Her romance with Levi is unique in that they have completely opposite personalities. The obvious thing is to pair a nerd with another nerd who will validate her nerdiness, but here Cath is challenged yet supported by a cute, outgoing Ag. major. It was fun, it was cute, and it helped them both jump off the page. The story had more than one layer as well, exploring Cath’s relationships with her father, sister and absent mother. Her relationship with her roommate Reagan was another highlight for me, as it was complicated without devolving into frienemy territory and yet still close and good for both of them.
Mini Review #3-Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson #2) by Rick Riordan
I liked this one too. My biggest complaint with The Lightning Thief was, surprisingly, too much action, but here each scene flowed a lot more gracefully together and the world building continues to be well-executed. The humor was amazing as well, and the characters are done well also, with shockingly complicated relationships and personalities, given the large cast and short page-count of the series thus far. I continue to be amazed by how much I like this series, given that I am a decade out from its intended audience and it is so highly hyped. It’s fun and funny and a hell of a ride for all ages.
- November Wrap-Up and December TBR (thestarlightshelves.wordpress.com)
- Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (bookjourney.wordpress.com)
- Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (reisareads.wordpress.com)
- Book Review: ‘Doctor Sleep’ – Stephen King (dnaindia.com)
- Doctor Sleep by Stephen King (stevefrench78.wordpress.com)
- Book Review – Doctor Sleep – Stephen King (menwhoread.wordpress.com)
- The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #2) (purplebooky.wordpress.com)