Monday Musing 08/12

Welcome to another Musing Mondays. This is a weekly meme hosted by MizB from Should be Reading.

Musing Mondays (Oct. 3)

Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…

• Describe one of your reading habits.

• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).

• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!

• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.

• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!

Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

Here’s my musing this week: There’s this one book I have been desperate and been wanting to get my hands on. It’s the third book of the Divergent series – Allegiant – by Veronica Roth.

I learned that the book is expected to be released on November, and that’s three more months of waiting! Yay! I would really like to know what happens to Tris and Four and how would the factions survive… I am equally intrigued by the following teaser questions:

What if your whole world was a lie?
What if a single revelation—like a single choice—changed everything?
What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected?

Anyway, this book trilogy is already being made into a movie and will soon be shown early next year. Okay, that’s more than 5 months to go.. Hmm.. So, I’d rather wait for the third book, at least until November! Yippee!!

How about you? What’s your musing this Monday?

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Destiny’s Revenge / Destiny’s Wrath

Title: Destiny’s Revenge
Destiny Series Book 2
Author: Nancy Straight
Kindle Edition; 225 pages
Published August 2011

There was no reason for Lauren to be in a coma. Her physical injuries had healed, but she had been non-responsive for so long that her doctors told her family and Max to move on. She awoke to find her life in a shambles; the man she loved was gone, her friends had moved on with their lives, and her family was ripped apart by her accident. No one knew of the evil forces watching, waiting for her in the shadows, in the lonely corners, even in the eyes of those she loved. Lauren needed to reclaim her destiny, to get her life back; the last thing she ever expected was Destiny’s Revenge.

Part two of the Destiny series. Big, big thanks to author Nancy Straight for giving me Books 2 &  3. What can I say? Destiny’s Revenge is exquisite! This time the story was told in Lauren’s & Max’s perspectives. While they were apart from each other, their feelings for one another didn’t fade, but only grew stronger. I was teary-eyed when they were reunited and Lauren’s playful confidant in the nursing home turned out to be Max’s very own grandpa. What a lovely scene it was!

New characters were introduced on the series and I was astounded when Lauren got the Beast’s power of sight. She became a full-fledged heroine I’ve come to admire because she used her powers for the good of the others. I applaud Nancy Straight for bringing Lauren closer to my heart. And Max… oh Max, the way he behaved when Lauren didn’t tell him her plans and when he thought he’s gonna lose her again. oh Max… Such an endearing and   lovable specie.

Destiny’s Revenge is a great sequel and I loved it from start to finish. I really had a great time reading it and I knew I had to read the last book right away!

My rating for the second book: 4 bookmarks!

Title: Destiny’s Wrath
Destiny Series Book 3
Author: Nancy Straight
Kindle Edition; 203 pages
Published January 2012

In the final installment of the Destiny Series, Lauren and Max still yearn for their normal life together. Although finally united, they’re unable to enjoy their bliss when they learn nine people have been viciously murdered. The murderer is a young man who saved Max’s life months earlier. Lauren and Max must decide how to help the young man and destroy the evil that resides within him. The only thing the Council and the Cabinet can agree on is: Lauren and Max need to stay away. Lauren and Max worry that this time the evil may consume them both. Nobody involved saw the power of Destiny’s Wrath until it was upon them.

Reading the first few chapters of the last book, my blood boiled to the highest peak! I simply hate the Beast! I should hate Jimmy, the one hosting Samael, but knowing that the Beast is the one controlling him, I let Jimmy off the hook. Samael, the Beast – so overbearing and cunning and evil!! He really was the Devil! Ugh..

Imagine the effect the Beast has on me! But when Lauren and Max joined forces to eradicate Samael, my heartbeat returned to its normal rate. By the way, when Max thought of the way how to propose to Lauren, that was really cute 🙂

Destiny’s Wrath, the last book in the trilogy was powerful and darker; but as usual, it kept me hanging on my seat, not wanting it to end. I got to meet more new characters – like some of the members of the Cabinet and the Council. The battle between good and evil happened, and of course the Good prevailed. I loved how Nancy ended the trilogy. It was fitting and emotional and exactly the way I wanted it to be. If you’re curious, go and read the book! You won’t get disappointed, I promise!

Thanks Nancy Straight for creating a masterpiece 🙂

Mockingjay

Review # 18
Title: Mockingjay
Author: Suzanne Collins
Hardcover, 398 pages
Published August 2010

Young Katniss Everdeen has survived the dreaded Hunger Games not once, but twice, but even now she can find no relief. In fact, the dangers seem to be escalating: President Snow has declared an all-out war on Katniss, her family, her friends, and all the oppressed people of District 12. What does the Girl On Fire have to do?

Mockingjay picks up immediately after Katniss Everdeen – champion of the recently concluded Hunger Games before the total reclamation and destruction of the Quarter Quell, was brought to District 13 – the place most people thought had vanished & destroyed after the last rebellion.
After waking up in a pristine hospital and clad in an all-gray ensemble, with her daily schedule tattoed on her shoulder, Katniss was tagged as the Mockingjay, the sign of the new rebellion where the thought of an uprising among districts had took shape. Katniss processed all that has happened to her and all that may still come to pass so long as the Capitol still remains a threat. Beyond the love triangle, beyond the upcoming twists and turns, beyond even the fate of Panem itself — what has happened to Katniss Everdeen. Where is the Girl on Fire?
At first I was really rooting for Gale too, but Peeta sort of grew on me. Damn that Peeta. Because while what happened with Katniss and Gale is totally unfair, and I feel ruins their trust and any sort of relationship they could have had, what happened to Peeta was unfair too, and I just have to root for him. Suzanne makes it easy to see how Peeta is a better person than Katniss.
Let’s jump up to the end of the story.. Tragic, really.. In the end so far as I can tell after all that’s happened, after all the death and loss the world still revolves around Katniss at least so far as Katniss is concerned. However,  I do believe Suzanne Collins made Mockingjay as a fitting, beautifully tragic end to a piercing series.
My rating for this book: 4 bookmarks

Catching Fire

 Review # 17
Title: Catching Fire
Author: Suzanne Collins
Hardcover, 391 pages
Published September 1st 2009

Catching Fire is the second installment of Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games. This story picks up about six months after the games have ended as Peeta and Katniss are about to be taken on a victory tour of the other districts. When Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mallark were crowned victors of the recently concluded Hunger Games, they thought everything else would be perfect. But they were wrong. As soon as they emerged as champions in the arena, President Snow of the Capitol have targeted Katniss because of her act of defiance on the Hunger Games. This pertains to the act of Katniss & Peeta willingly swallowing some poisonous berries after the Gamemakers announced that there should only one winner in the game. But since Peeta & Katniss don’t want to kill each other, they thought of rather dying so as no victor will emerge. This act angered the Gamemakers and President Snow because Katniss has made the capitol looked like fools and were very unhappy with her performance in the games and she comes to realize what a huge price she is going to have to pay for that.

And there’s Peeta’s public wedding proposal to Katniss, where she had to go along so as not to anger the Capitol further. Somehow, I feel the intensity of the love triangle on this book – Peeta, Katniss & Gale. I can see the developmental difference in Katniss, an older, wiser, more observant girl while still retaining that fire. I thought her confusion over Peeta and Gale well done and age appropriate. I could feel her emotion for both boys–her respect, camaraderie, in sync feelings with Gale and her protective, guilty, grateful feelings for Peeta–and why she could not give up or disappoint either one. I enjoyed learning more about Haymitch and seeing more of the danger Katniss’ district faced for her unintended rebellion. In Hunger Games I felt intense concern for Katniss where here I felt it for her whole district. Of course, with a more dangerous story, there is definitely more gore. Once again, not appropriate for younger teens.

Although the entire concept is somewhat discturbing, The Hunger Games and Catching Fire are two of the most captivating books I’ve read recently. I can’t wait to finish the next book – Mockingjay! I’m screaming for more and more! Collins has left her readers with a doozy of a cliffhanger. This had me thinking…  Will she be able to bring it together and pull it off triumphantly for the final installment?

Of course she had! So i better read and finish the series fast!

My rating for Catching Fire:  4 bookmarks!

Hunger Games


Title: Hunger Games (Book 1)
Author: Suzanne Collins

Hardbound, 374 pages
Published October 1st 2008

I rarely cry over books, really! But the world of Hunger Games left me crying again and again. Katniss & Peeta – two brave warriors – two different heart-warming histories.

When I first heard about Hunger Games, I was hesitant to read it. I thought these was another one of those YA Reads that wanted to get hold of that Twilight pandemonium. But when I read the outstanding reviews and the fact that it has been a bestseller for a number of months, not just weeks, and then spawned up to three installments, I knew I had to read Hunger Games.

Exactly on my birthday, just two days ago (February 9), I started reading Suzanne Collins’ masterpiece. I got watery eyes after learning about poverty, struggles and sacrifices on District 12, especially about Katniss’ & Peeta’s families; the way they had met, the way they have been chosen for the dreaded Hunger Games, the way they had been paired up, they way they had survived.

Katniss is a very strong character – much different from the girl protagonists I previously read. At first, I couldn’t help but compare her with Katarina Bishop (Heist Society) and with Caitlin McCourt (Diva) who are all brave and bold. (Notice their names – Katniss, Kat & Caitlin – it looks like they belong to the same feline kingdom.)

But there is something about Katniss that made her stood out from the rest of heroines. She cares so much for her family, taking the place of Prim, her sister as a tribute so Prim would be spared from the bloodbath, she strives hard to survive, she steers clear of untrustworthy people, she knows how to keep her emotions in check, she thinks ahead and moves according to plan, even if she had to pretend being in-love – she’s all that, all in one piece..

Peeta, on the other hand, may somewhat be smitten with Katniss,as he does show & play on the arena. In his little way, he helps himself and Katniss survive against their competitors – the Career Tributes. He may not be as strong as Katniss but he did all his best to protect her, even getting a cut in the leg just to make her run away from the enemy.

The ending of the story is a cliffhanger, one that makes you think about what will happen next after the battle at the arena. I’m not recommending this book to everyone though. If you hate violence or dystopia, choose a more subtle book, because Hunger Games is definitely not for the faint-of-heart.

But for those who love this kind of genre, knock yourselves out. This is one of the ultimate must-reads because this book is simply AWESOME!!

My rating for Hunger Games: 5 Bookmarks!

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Just want to share the brief history of Panem and how Hunger Games came to be, taken from he book:

Panem is a country that rose up out of the ashes of a place that was once called North America, a shining Capitol ringed by thirteen districts, which brought peace and prosperity to its citizens. Then came the Dark Days, the uprising of the districts against the Capitol.

Twelve were defeated, the thirteenth obliterated. The Treaty of Treason gave us the new laws to guarantee peace and, as our yearly reminder that the Dark Days must never be repeated, it gave us the Hunger Games.

The rules of the Hunger Games are simple. In punishment for the uprising, each of the twelve districts must provide one girl and one boy, called tributes, to participate. The twenty-four tributes will be imprisoned in a vast outdoor arena that could hold anything from a burning desert to a frozen wasteland.

Over a period of several weeks, the competitors must fight to the death. The last tribute standing wins. Taking the kids from the districts, forcing them to kill one another while the others watch — this is the Capitol’s way of reminding district people how totally they are at the mercy of Capitol. How little chance they would stand of surviving another rebellion.

The Circle Trilogy

I’m not really a very big fan of fantasy literature, but if there are vampires, witch and dragons in the scene, i would surely love it.. that’s why i was so amazed and i can say that this Circle trilogy is really a worth of reading!

Morrigan’s Cross (Book 1), Dance of the Gods (Book 2) & Valley of Silence (Book 3) is a great trilogy book, way better than the Twilight saga, i might say! It’s a fantastic mix of time travel, vampire chronicles, and romance.

All of the following characters had some kind of deepness in them and there was a great plot with a touch of humour every now and then.

Cian & Moira as the Vampire & the Queen = the perfect cat + dog (love’em or hate’em)tandem, t
Larkin & Blair as the shape-shifter & the demon hunter = the sexy pair (i love their chemistry!)
Hoyt & Glenna as the sorcerer and witch = the married magical creatures
Lilith = the alluring yet cunning vampire creator
Lora = the menacing French ladylove

Great action! Lilith versus Cian’s minions = the vampire creator versus its creation is surreal yet fantastic! I thought I was just reading another novel but instead fell into a fabulous world that would end too soon after only three books!

really a must read!