Book Review: A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

Book Review

 

Quick Stats
Title: A Monster Calls 
Author: Patrick Ness
Date Read: July 25th to July 29th 2015
Date Published: March 12th 2013 by Candlewick Press
My book format: Paperback/Own copy 
Goodreads Blurb:
An unflinching, darkly funny, and deeply moving story of a boy, his seriously ill mother, and an unexpected monstrous visitor.At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting– he’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd– whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself– Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.
 My thoughts
This book is going to change your life. I promise. 

So. This is my very first Patrick Ness book and to be honest, I did not expect a lot of things from it. Yeah, I know Patrick Ness is like one of the greatest authors out there, but I didn’t think I’d really love his works.

But boy was I wrong. After reading A Monster Calls, all I wanna do right now is to just go to the bookstore and get all the Patrick Ness novels I could get my hands into. HE IS THAT GREAT.

The writing was so simple, straight forward, direct to the point, and add all those adjectives describing clear and on point writing. He seemed to have compressed into a 200-something paged book all the lessons a person should learn through out his whole life. He touched on a lot of things – life, death, sacrifice, hope, happiness, pain, and most important of all – TRUTH.

This book just touched me in so many ways, and in so many parts of my life.

“ Sometimes, people need to lie to themselves most of all.”

***

“It’s only a dream.”
“But what is a dream, Conor O’Malley? Who is it to say that it is not everything else that is the dream,?” 

I look at this book and I ask how could it possibly have all the words that I need to hear right now? I just can’t explain how everything in this book is just so simple but at the same time so deep and so touching and so true.

I would totally recommend it to anyone. Whatever age group you may be, this book is for you. If you’re 10, read it. If you’re 25, you definitely should pick this up. If you’re 40, it doesn’t matter. Just please read this book because it’s going to change your life forever.

“You do not write your life with words,” the monster said. “You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.” 

The last few pages made my heart break so hard I just sat and stared at the window after closing the last page. In fact I was still in denial that it was the last page already so I just kept on flipping and flipping the pages though the remaining ones were all blank already. It’s just so good, guys.

I know this book will stay with me for a long long time. In fact, though I don’t re-read books (at all), I would love to make re-visit with this one.

Generally
It was an awesome awesome experience reading this book! 🙂 I loved every bit. Loved every single part of it!
The Boklander Rating
5 Stars
4.5 stars! It was almost perfect! The thing that made me take away that 0.5 rating is probably because I wanted more and I wanted it to be longer, ‘coz it’s so good, guys. So achingly good!  
So that’s it, guys! I’ll see ya next post, and happy reading always!
KAT SIGN

#TBRTakedown V2.0

READING UPDATE

I am so excited to finally be participating in #TBRTakedown 2.0! I didn’t get to join the first one, so I’m really really excited to take part in Version 2.0! 🙂 Here’s LeaningLights’ video explaining what this read-a-thon actually is: 🙂

Anyway, I’m going to be joining this read-a-thon with my book club friends Cam, Sandee, Tina, Mel, and Arya! 🙂 Since it’s going to be happening on July 24th to 31st, I think I’m up to doing the challenges that comes with this read-a-thon!

TBR Challenges:
1. First Book in a series
2. Sequel Book in a series
3. Out of your comfort zone (genre, author, reviews, etc)
4. On your shelf over a year (or the longest)
5. Most recently hauled book

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1. First Book in a series – SHATTER ME by TEHEREH MAFI 

I have long been meaning to start this series and I don’t know what stops me everytime. I have the first and second books and I just know that I will love it! Guess #TBRTakedown 2.0 is the best chance to start with this awesomeness that Tahereh Mafi has created! 🙂 

2. Sequel Book in a series – CROWN OF MIDNIGHT by SARAH J. MAAS 

I looooved Throne of Glass! So it is not surprising that I am picking the second book in the series in this category! 🙂 I was supposed to read Crown of Midnight right after reading Throne of Glass, but finals week got in the way! Ugh. 

3. Out of your comfort zone (genre, author, reviews, etc). – PANIC by LAUREN OLIVER 

I honestly haven’t heard of super good reviews about this book! I mean, yeah, there are some people who liked it, but the reviews have always been mized! A lot hated it, in fact! But I have it in bookshelf, so I am picking it as one that is out of my comfort zone! I am scared of this book actually! I’m scared because of all the negative reviews! But I am trying it out anyway 🙂 

4. On your shelf over a year (or the longest) – LOLA AND THE BOY NEXT DOOR by STEPHANIE PERKINS

I’m not entirely sure if this book has been sitting in my shelf the longest – actually, I’m sorta sure it is not! Haha. But I am picking it anyway because it has always been part of all my TBR lists since January this year, but I never get to read it! Ugh. I have always been meaning to read it, but for some reason I end up not reading it. So. Yeah. I hope I get to get around it this time! 

5. Most recently hauled book – A MONSTER CALLS by PATRICK NESS 

I’m really really excited with this one! I have never read any Patrick Ness book before, but I have been hearing so much good things about his works! Regan from Peruse Project (in YouTube) talks non-stop about him, and I just can’t not read his works! I actually browsed through the first chapter of this book while I was in the bookstore and I was instantly hooked! I can’t wait to read it!!! ❤ ❤ ❤ All I know is that it’s scary! Haha. 

So that’s it, guys! Are any of you participating the #TBRTakedown? Please tell me if you are! I would love to know your TBR list! 🙂

Happy reading!

KAT SIGN

Book Review: Alienated by Melissa Landers

Book Review

I first heard of Alienated from Sasha of abookutopia as she talked about how good it was and how she really really liked it. But this is coming from a reader who has long been in love with alien fiction since forever. I, however, has never read (nor tried to read) any alien novel before, so I was not entirely sure if I’m really going to like Alienated. Sasha made it sound like a very fun read, though, so I did not hesitate into trying this one out 🙂

Quick Stats

Title: Alienated 

Author: Melissa Landers

Date of Publication: January 6th 2015 

Read from: June 15th to July 12th, 2015 

My book format: Paperback, published by Disney Hyperion 

Goodreads blurb:

Two years ago, the aliens made contact. Now Cara Sweeney is going to be sharing a bathroom with one of them.
Handpicked to host the first-ever L’eihr exchange student, Cara thinks her future is set. Not only does she get a free ride to her dream college, she’ll have inside information about the mysterious L’eihrs that every journalist would kill for. Cara’s blog following is about to skyrocket.
Still, Cara isn’t sure what to think when she meets Aelyx. Humans and L’eihrs have nearly identical DNA, but cold, infuriatingly brilliant Aelyx couldn’t seem more alien. She’s certain about one thing though: no human boy is this good-looking.
But when Cara’s classmates get swept up by anti-L’eihr paranoia, Midtown High School suddenly isn’t safe anymore. Threatening notes appear in Cara’s locker, and a police officer has to escort her and Aelyx to class.

Cara finds support in the last person she expected. She realizes that Aelyx isn’t just her only friend; she’s fallen hard for him. But Aelyx has been hiding the truth about the purpose of his exchange, and its potentially deadly consequences. Soon Cara will be in for the fight of her life-not just for herself and the boy she loves, but for the future of her planet.

My thoughts

I LOL-ed so many times in this book! I didn’t just laugh okay, i literally laughed out loud!!! For instance, this scene:

“To be honest, I don’t know what qualities you ever saw in him. I can tell why he chose you, but-“
“Oh yeah?” Cara’s spirits lifted as she sensed a compliment coming on. “Why do you think he chose me?”
“It’s obvious.” He swept a hand to indicate her loose curls. “Your long, shiny hair, healthy skin, and bright eyes show that you’re well-nourished.”
“Uh, thank you?”
“I’m not finished.”
“Go on then.”
“You’re clearly intelligent.” Then he felt the need to add, “For a human.”
“Gee. That’s so sweet.”
“But Eric was probably most attracted to your waist-to-hip ratio.” For a split second, Aelyx resembled a human boy as he leaned back and peered at her caboose. “Hips of that width are likely to pass life offspring without complication.” 
Cara nearly swallowed her own tongue. She didn’t have big hips did she?”

After reading this scene, I was like, “Oh, no Aelyx! You did not just say that!” Ha ha ha. It was a comment so innocently made and Aelyx just became a thousand times cuter after this! 🙂 He was such a darling!

Anyway, the premise sounds shallow at first glance, I know. An alien comes to earth for an intergalactic exchange student program, the host girl falls in love with the cute alien and  yeah all those cheesy stuff happening. But it’s actually so much more than that! 🙂 I love the concept that Melissa Landers has created! 🙂 The book started out so much fun and so many funny things are happening while both characters are adjusting in each other’s concept of living.

It would have been a solid 4.0 for me but towards the middle part, things kind of become dragging and so many unnecessary stuff started happening. For instance, I don’t get why the people in their community would target Cara’s family (and put their lives in danger, at that) just because they were chosen by the government to host the aliens? I mean, come on, people.

Anyway, I also thought the things happening to Cara and Aelyx in school were super unnecessary and did not cotribute to the development of the story at all. Unnecessary threats and weird accidents happening. I just didn’t dig that part. 😦

However, for the last 8 chapters or so, things got really really good again! The feels in the first how many chapters are back in the last quarter of the novel! 🙂 I wa flipping the pages so much faster and I was smiling so much more 🙂 If you’re reading this review and you plan to read the book, I suggest you don’t DNF in the middle part if things get really draggy 🙂 Just patiently flip through those pages and you’ll be rewarded with all the actions at the last quarter of the book! 🙂 Believe me. I swear it’s going to be a good good ending! 🙂

I am intrigued with what’s finally going to happen in the second book, Invaded 🙂 Though I don’t plan on buying it anytime soon coz I’m still waiting for the paperback version! I want my books in uniform format, he he. 

Generally

I liked Alienated! I did not love it, love it, but it was an enjoyable read! I’m glad I picked it up and I had a good time 🙂

The Boklander Rating

3 Stars

3.5 Alienated stars! 🙂 It was a fun read, and I recommend it for you guys who just plainly want to have good time! 🙂

So that’s it, guys! I’ll see ya next post, and happy reading always!

KAT SIGN

Book Review: Table for Two

Book Review

First read: April 22, 2012. Rating: 3 stars
Re-read: July 12, 2015.

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Quick Stats

Title: Table for Two

Author: Marla Miniano

Date fo Publication: 2010

Date Read: From July 12, 2015 to July 12, 2015

My book format: Paperback, by Summit Books

Goodreads Blurb:

In Table for Two, a corner table at a quiet coffee shop takes center stage, the latest release from Summit Books author Marla Miniano. The table is the setting for pivotal moments in the lives of the main characters—who, as it seems, are quite the lovelorn bunch. First, there’s the long-time couple on the verge of calling it quits after college graduation. Then there’s the serial dater who accepts her younger brother’s challenge to go dateless for two months. There’s also a photographer who attempts to dissuade his best friend from getting married (and we’re curious to find out why). And finally, there are the two hopefuls: a young man who meets with the girl he never stopped loving, and a young lady who pores over romance novels, waiting for her turn to fall in love.

So I re-read Table for Two, coz I had to find small books in my shelf for this #CramAThon thing happening over this summer. 🙂 (You check out my previous post for my CramAThon TBR!) 🙂

This is a really thin book, with only a little over a hundred pages. I remember seeing this in Cosmopolitan/Candy magazine’s recommended reads for young adults and adults, alike. It was good, I must say. Not super, but it was a work of art in itself. 🙂

This novella is actually about different stories of different persons in some specific points in their lives. But they are all tied together by this one “cafe around the corner” which has become the witness of the milestones in each of the characters’ life.

There really is no “one” story. In fact, even the little stories that compose this novella do not have plots. You, the reader, will just be able to infer what’s going on. And it’s not at all a bad thing. The execution was done well, and though confusing at first, the characters get to grow on you and you’ll just learn to care for them. 🙂

I’m glad I re-read this. It made me realize that there are just so many things happening around me that I choose not to know and care about. Like a couple breaking up in one corner, a man getting promoted in his job but having no one to share his success with, a girl trying to mend her heart, a couple celebrating on having their first baby. There are just so many things out there that we do not know is happening and it just makes me appreciate life more. And it makes me wanna be more friendly and more concerned and be more caring.

So yeah. I’m glad for this re-read. It’s not perfect, but it’s worth the time 🙂

The Boklander Rating

3 StarsI’m giving Table for Two 3.5 stars! It was so short and I know so many things can still happen, but that’s the point of short stories and novellas, right? They make you think of the what-if’s and the could have beens and all the possibilities. So. A 3.5! I liked it! 🙂

So that’s it guys, I’ll see ya next post and happy reading always!

KAT SIGN

Summer 2015 #Cramathon!

READING UPDATE

Hello, everyone!

Just a quick reading update here before my week goes haywire because of all my exams and my graduate school thesis. 🙂 So I’m joining the Summer 2015 #Cramathon which is happening on July 10th to July 13th, and basically all you have to do is pick out all the smallest books in your TBR shelf/shelves and cram-read them all together for the next four days! And that’s it! Haha. 🙂 It’s a pretty simple and straight forward readathon, really!

Now a list of challenges comes with it, though, which is just some sort of a guide to help you pick out the books. You may or you may not follow the list. 🙂

1. Read a children’s book.

2. Read a hardback.

3. Read 2 books in 24 hours.

4. Read a graphic novel.

5. Read a book written in verse.

6. Read a novella.

7. Read 5 books in total.

Again, you may or may not follow the list! No biggie 🙂

So here’s my TBR for the next four days, and I hope to conquer it despite all the school stress! Ha ha. 

Read 2 books in 24 hours: Alienated by Melissa Landers & Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

Read a Novella: Table for Two by Marla Miniano, who is a local author from the Philippines. Or I’ll probably  read The Selection novellas in my Kindle. We’ll see 😉

Read a children’s book: Harry POtter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

I’m semi following the list. I can’t do each item coz for one, I don’t have all of those in my shelf, like a graphic novel or a book written in verse. So yeah.

That’s it for now, guys! I hope you join in the #cramathon also coz it’s really really fun!

Happy reading!

KAT SIGN