The Heart-Shaped Box

Ok, so I picked this book up from my library and left it lying around for two or three weeks before I finally started reading. And then I read it in less than 24 hours. Why? It started off strong and every time you thought there might be a climax and the end, it cooled down. It came on strong, tapered off before starting all over again, each time intensifying a little more. I honestly did not think that Joe Hill Joe Hillwould be able to maintain the tension, but he did. I tore through the pages with increasing speed. In fact, I was turning the pages so quickly I thought I might get a papercut, and this book does not allow you to brush off something as seemingly benign as a paercut or a splinter or a needle prick. All in all, this novel was a good beginning. The suspense and terror started early on and did not relent for a moment. Definite recommmend.

Only downside is the frequent use of prfanity. Otherwise, a very excellent book.

The Sunne in Splendour

I’ve become interested in the War of the Roses, or the Cousins’ War, whatever you wish to call it. I can trace the interest back to the announcement of the discovery of King Richard III’s remains in Leicester. I have read Philippa Gregory (Author)‘s version of these events and, while I find them fascinating, I felt they were a little lacking in the historical department. In my search for more accurate depictions of these very intriguing, confusing events, I came across Sharon Kay Penman‘s name. When I discovered The Sunne in Splendour, I jumped at the chance to read it, because I had heard such wonderful praise of both the author and the book. I can say without a doubt that this was a wonderful retelling of the War of the Roses. She was able to bring to life a very controversial man. Richard was not a man that history spoke kindly of, but Ms. Penman was able to bring a great deal of warmth and sympathy to the character. It is unfortunate that so much of this man’s life remains shrouded in mystery and controversy (thanks in large part to the Tudors and those who did half-hearted histories of the time and couldn’t be bothered with doing any more substantial digging than what the Tudors put out) but Ms. Penman was able to breathe life into the characters. Although I knew the ending and was on some level prepared for it, I was still shocked and felt the loss when Richard was killed at Bosworth field. I hope that, one day, his name can be cleared in the disappearence of his nephews, although I will not hold my breath. With the discovery of his remains in Leicester, I do hope that he will be able to rest in peace and more people will be inspired to look into his history and clear up the misconceptions that we have.

All in all, this book, though pretty large, is still a total recommend on my part.

Lionheart

This book took me a very long time to read. It wasn’t because of the length (it being only(!) 589 pages long.)The only thing I can think of that caused me to take the length of time it took me was because of the subject matter. The Sunne in Splendour took me awhile to read as well, probably for the same reason. Because of the historical nature of this novel, I was unable to lose myself in the book as I normally do.

On the other hand, I don’t think anyone could feel as though nothing happened in the book. In fact, if it weren’t based on historical events, I’d have trouble believing that it could have happened. So many events occurred that would seem to be outlandish if they weren’t based on true events. It is amazing that someone like King Richard Coeur de Lion could exist. He just seems too far for life. He is an endlessly fascinating guy, but how could he not be with Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine as parents?

2001: A Space Odyssey

** spoiler alert ** Well, after careful consideration, I have to say… the book is infinitely better than the movie. The ending of the movie is a bit confusing, but only because it is difficult to understand someone’s interior thinking without some type of narration. Books, on the other hand, well, they don’t have that problem, do they? It’s easier to understand that Bowman becomes “one with the Universe”. He returns to Earth, but not even he is sure why. I’m waiting for the next book from my library. Will it explain more? I don’t know, but Arthur C. Clarke has certainly dragged me into his unique view of the Universe.