Velkommen

På bloggen her kan du finde anmeldelser af alt fra fantasy, science Fiction, kærlighed, chicklit, YA og NA til historiske romaner, krimier, spændingsbøger, og hvad jeg ellers lige falder over, der ser spændende ud. Herudover er der bl.a. Book Hauls og Kommende Udgivelser, samt Månedlige Opsummeringer. Occasional posts/reviews in English.
~ Iben
Bibliotekar, bogblogger & boganmelder

27/01/2012

The Diamond Throne by David Eddings

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Sparhawk, Pandion Knight and Queen's Champion, returns from a long spell of exile to find his native land overrun with evil and intrique - and his young Queen grievously ill. Indeed, Ehlana lies magically entombed within a block of crystal, doomed to die unless a cure can be found within the year.
But as Sparhawk and his allies - who include Sephrenia, the ageless sorceress, and Flute, the strange and powerful girl-child - seek to save Ehlana and the land, they discover that the evil is greater and more persuasive than they had feared.
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I've just finished rereading The Diamond Throne (book 1 of the Elenium) by David Eddings, who's one of my all time favourite authors from my childhood. I discovered his books in the library and have reread both the Elenium and the sequel trilogy the Tamuli, as well as his other major series The Belgariad and the Malloreon AND their prequel/sequels Belgarath the Sorcerer and Polgara the Sorceress and the Rivan Codex - all numerous times. I absolutely loved them back then and I still greatly enjoy rereading them.

It was weird getting back into this one though, because I noticed a few things that haven't bothered me before, or rather I just didn't think much about it. If you read this wanting to get offended, it sort of condoning infidelity will probably piss you off. And the fact that our heroes (all tough men) have no problem (threatening) to beat a young boy with a belt as punishment for him/to serve him a lesson. And that the Southern race is suspiciously similar to the stereotypical Arabs as well as being portrayed as plain stupid. Like, an entire nation of people with the IQ of a sheep - it's just such lazy writing really that... and ever so slightly racist. The humour can also be pretty bleak and forced. Like you can just imagine the author sitting there, chuckling as he write these "bad-ass" jokes, but the mature reader doesn't really find it all that funny.

As anyone who have read some of Eddings' books will know he also somewhat lacked imagination. Storylinewise The Belgariad/Malloreon and The Elenium/Tamuli are almost exactly the same. I have been told that his third series was almost identical to these two as well. Only major difference is really just that in this series the main character is an adult, a trained warrior and slightly less clueless than Garion in the Belgariad. A blue gemstone is once again the major almighty thingymagic, and our hero has a cast of resourceful friends whose roles are pretty similar to those of the other series, including a magic-wielding teacher/guide. And finally the deities also play a big part in the action.

So now that I've sat here and thrashed the book, you might wonder why I gave it 4 stars? Well, partly because it holds sentimental value for me, but also partly it's really just a good read. I chose to ignore some of the bad parts (like the infidelity) because set in a more medieval setting, I can't expect the characters to have modern values. And in regard to the somewhat paper-thin characters I chose to overlook their flaws and just enjoy the story. Some books aren't meant to be interpreted and given deep thought. This book doesn't hold a lesson to be learned. It's just meant to be enjoyed.

The story continues in The Ruby Knight and The Sapphire Rose (books 2 and 3 of the Elenium)






this particular edition: 496 pages / first published in 1989
Review by Iben J, BoB, 2012

23/01/2012

Trailers

I know I'm really late to the party with these, but oh my God, I'm so excited about all the hopefully amazing films coming in 2012 :D

The Hunger Games, 23rd of March


Snow White And The Huntsman, 1st of June


Brave, 22nd of June


The Dark Knight Rises, 20th of July


The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, 14th of December


The Expendables 2, 30th of August


Besides these there are also The Avengers, Twilight: Breaking Dawn pt 2 and many many others - I can't wait :D

20/01/2012

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

Shiver The Wolves of Mercy Falls #1 - 4 stars
Linger The Wolves of Mercy Falls #2 - 4 stars


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Sam has always loved Grace. As a wolf, he watched her from afar. As a boy, he held her in his arms.
Now facing the possibility of a life without her, he will do anything to keep her safe. Even if it means facing his demons. Even if it risks everything he has.
Anything, as long as their love can survive...
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I was terribly disappointed with Forever. It was so incredibly long and boring and it took me forever to read because of that.

The first half of it constantly leads up to something happening just around the corner. The chapters are just a few pages short and the tension is immense. And when nothing then happens for 200 pages of this, besides them going back and forth and feeling miserable, you feel like throwing the book out the window.

Finally events take off and we're supposed to feel all sorts of deep emotions for Sam and Grace's struggles to work out a way of saving the wolves from extermination and stay together, while Cole is going bananas working on a cure and Isabel pouts. Honestly? I couldn't care less at this point. The big finale is sort of neat, but at this point I was just so bored with the whole ordeal and felt it was so predictable I just wanted it to be over.

Shiver is by far the best of the trilogy. If only she could have left it at that.

 


496 pages / published in 2011
Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2012

17/01/2012

Fire by Kristin Cashore

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It is not a peaceful time in the Dells. The young King Nash clings to his throne while rebel lords in the north and south build armies to unseat him. The mountains and forests are filled with spies and thieves and lawless men.
This is where Fire lives. With a wild, irresistible appearance and hair the color of flame, Fire is the last remaining human monster. Equally hated and adored, she has the unique ability to control minds, but she guards her power, unwilling to steal the secrets of innocent people. Especially when she has so many of her own.
Then Prince Brigan comes to bring her to King City. The royal family needs her help to uncover the plot against the king. Far away from home, Fire begins to realize there's more to her power than she ever dreamed. Her power could save the kingdom.
If only she weren't afraid of becoming the monster her father was.
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 It took me quite a while to get into this book, as I had expected the setting to be more like Graceling, but I ended up really enjoying it and fell in love with Fire and all her limitations. Unlike so many other heroines she's severely limited by her powers as well as her past.

I think my chief complaint about the book is Archer and her relationship with him. They're supposed to be childhood friends and now.. something more? but the way they act around each other seems off to me. And he's just a massive jerkface. Brigan on the other hand sounds like a great guy!

Another issue is that of the main villain. I can't say too much as it would give too much away, but I think it's a bit anticlimactic and he's a bit too... boring. Simple, even.

Over all though it's one of the better books I've read in a while, it was well written and it drew me in.





384 pages / published in 2010
Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2012

08/01/2012

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead


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Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school - it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s - the very place where they’re most in danger. . . .
Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi - the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires - make Lissa one of them forever...
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This is why you're supposed to review books relatively quickly after you read them - otherwise they fade from your memory and you struggle to remember what was so great about it in the first place. I rate books right after reading them, and I gave this one 4 stars on Goodreads. Now, I struggle to remember why, nothing strikes me as all that special.

It was an okay read and fairly well written, but main character Rose is just a pain in the neck with her her basically amazing qualities and sexiness that makes everybody either want to be her, be with her, or totally hate her guts. Lissa is so obnoxiously helpless it hurts and most of the males are basically just there so the girls can lust over them. And for a plot that's supposedly set in a school setting it's got next to nothing to do with getting educated, unless you count Rose's P.E. lessons with Mr. Dark and Mysterious.

I liked the vampyric aspects of the story, I think that take was refreshingly classical, you've got vampires, you've got semis and you've got humans who get fed on. You've got bad guys and good guys, you've got a hierarchy and it's all sort of Eastern European. Thumbs up for that. Them wielding elemental magic? Thumbs down.

Overall the book is quickly read and though not exactly a page turner, I kept on reading for longer periods of time and I did enjoy the final revelation and the ending.

Supposedly 4 stars once you've just read it, somewhat closer to 3 stars a few weeks later when you can't remember why you liked it that much in the first place.





332 pages / published in 2007
Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2012.

07/01/2012

Hello 2012

2012 has not been all that kind to me so far. 2011 ended with me being quite ill on the second to last day and coughing but partying on New Years Eve. I've been coughing and sneezing ever since - it's mainly been dry coughs but finally, thankfully, they're getting more (TMI sorry) slimy which mean it's releasing my lungs and I'll be back on track soon.

In addition to being ill I've been struck by some bad luck the past couple of days. Thursday I went grocery shopping and as I got off the bus on the way home one of the bags broke by the handles and it went crashing to the ground - naturally it was the bag with the eggs in it. Had to carry it home in my arms, begging that the other bag would hold. Later that evening while cooking dinner I knocked over a can of tomatoes and it flooded down behind the stove - you can only imagine how fun that was to clean. To complete the misery yesterday I decided to brave my ongoing cold and went to the gym, planning to run at least 3 km on the treadmill - after 1, I lost my footing and fell (for the first time ever), and bashed my knee, loosing quite a chunk of skin and flesh in the process. I'm telling you, if this accident prone clumsiness continues I'm changing my name to Bella and will start hanging out by the forest expecting Mr Sparkle to turn up at any moment.

I haven't been able to finish even one book so far this year. None of what I'm reading really appeals to me, and considering I've started on 4 different books that says a lot. I had expected Forever by Maggie Stiefvater to be my saviour but honestly it just doesn't do the trick, it's a bit too long and boring, frankly. I'm halfway through and it feels like absolutely nothing of importance has taken place, all the characters are just biding their time waiting for certain doom or something.

I had a couple of reviews lined up, but I never got round to writing them properly and it's now the second Friday in a row where I disappoint. Upcoming reviews are the Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead and Fire by Kristin Cashore. I'll try and do my very best to get one published ASAP.

Have a good weekend :-)