Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Girl In Times Square - Paullina Simons, better than ever?

Meet Lily Quin, your average 24 year old college girl struggling with her work and school. She is trying to make a living in the city of New York. All of her life, Lily was quite the observer, watching everything around her; the most exciting things seem to happen to the people in her life. Everyone but Lily. Until her friend and roommate; Amy disappears. And Lily's life is turned upside down. That's when she meets Spencer O'Mally, an NYPD detective assigned to look for Amy.
I like Lily, in fact, I like her a lot! She reminds me of me in some way, she's very artistic and loves to read. Her all time dream is to sleep and draw and read in her spare time.
I'm not going to start glorifying and appraising Paullina Simons's writing, you all know how much I love her writing and her immersing style in which she ornaments her wonderful books. I adore Paullina.
This book was a lot different than The Bronze Horseman trilogy. Obviously it takes place in a whole different world, in a whole different time, and though it does take us back to WWII, having Claudia-Lily's grandmother survived-barely-the inhumanity of the Nazis and lost her lover during the war. But! It cannot be compared with TBH because it's a different book, and I'm not going to compare.
I enjoyed the book, quite a lot honestly. However, the explanation of Amy's disappearance, along with the truth about her (Which I'm not going to spoil, clearly) was beyond anything I expected, maybe it's good-the surprise factor, but sometimes it might take of the authenticity of the book. Which I think it did in this case.

This book deals with so many topics, it's amazing to think about it. It deals with love, finding your own soul mate and dealing with its consequences. About family relations. Alcoholism, Illness(!!!!). Luck and certainly with: Fate; the common factor I sensed in all Paullina's books I got to read.
Lily is faced with two pieces of luck, one good (Hell! one amazing!) and the other is bad beyond anything you'd imagine, and so the story begins.
As to the male character is Lily's life; Spencer. I liked Spencer a lot! (But I like Shura best! God! I said no comparison!!!) He's cool and measured, yes he's way too old but it doesn't come across as a bad thing, he's a grown up man, dealing with his own problems and fears, but he's the sweetest with Lily, I liked that.
I despised Lily's family, her mother, God she's unbelievable! Her father who is too passive. Her sisters who are so greedy and annoying.
But I do like her brother, which may seem a bit weird for those who read the book. I liked him because of his humanity, he was a heartbroken and he dealt with it his own way.

Bottom line, it's a very good book. I recommend it highly and strongly! :)
TGITS wasn't as engrossing and heart-wrenching as TBH, but it was as good nonetheless.
Have fun reading,
See you next time.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

New books!

I just got back from my book shopping!
No matter how much I try to convince myself to settle with 2 books I end up buying 4 or more, never seriously considering the fact that I can't really afford buying so much books. (Nor that I actually ran out of shelves!)
I left the house today planning to buy one art\design book and one Fiction novel, the costs of the art books were outrageous so I didn't buy any, however, my eyes landed on a book named "Outlander" which is a book I'm dying to read because many TBH lovers recommended this book to me, I bought the first and the third books in the series (Yeah, I know, why didn't I buy the second one, I'm stupid that's why) And so I began buying more and more books.

The books from bottom to up:
The Girl In Times Square - Paullina Simons. I've set a goal to myself to read as many books by PS as I possibly can, I adore her writing, and I really look forward to reading this book, hoping I'd love it as much as I loved TBH (I'd settle with half... really!)

Outlander & Voyager - Diana Gabaldon. The back covers promise me a great read, and the cover is quite striking! Very much excited to read this series.

Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte. God only knows how much I've been craving to read this one, it sounds so amazing I can't wait to read it!!!

Dear John - Nicholas Sparks. I didn't buy it today actually, but I've figured I could mention it. I started reading it and I stopped because I wanted to read The Bronze Horseman once again (OK, you can shoot me!) and I'm aiming to come back to it later, frankly it's not that interesting, and NS does follow a certain pattern that I've experienced not once but twice. Hopefully I'll get more attached to the book soon.

This is what I got today, I hope I'll find these books enjoyable to read!
Have a great day!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Nineteen Minutes - Jodi Picoult (mmmm...)

When the back cover of a book says: "Lacy searches the past for clues and begins to realise that despite, or perhaps, because of, her every effort, she never really knew her son at all..." would it be so stupid or dumb to assume that a major part of the book will be discussing this "search"? Apparently, yeah! Because, a very tiny part *Ehm-2-3 pages-ehm* of the book dealt with this so-called "search".
Yes, I know... details... details, what difference does it make if the book didn't really match my expectaions, so what? The book was still a great read, a perfect eye-opener, just as every book by this author.

Nineteen Minutes, tells the story of Peter Houghton, who was compulsively bullied throughout his whole life, since the very first day of kindergarten 'til he decides that he had had enough, and drives to school with a backpack full of handguns instead of books and notebooks.
It took him nineteen minutes to kill ten people and to wound nineteen others, he was arrested and so a new chapter of his life began.
You couldn't but to feel sympathy with the shooter, Peter, has suffered the worse from his classmates and his own brother, being pushed into lockers, having his privacy being invaded without mercy, being beaten and humiliated and what not? I was very close to tears reading some parts of the book. This book raises this very hurtful topic into consideration, I began to think and recall some of the moments I remember from high school, luckily, I wasn't... "bullied" but I've witnessed some unfortunate incidents when some kids in my classes were bullied and teased by other. What is so sad about this is that this happened also in classes, not only in the halls, or the yard. And now I'm really aware of the dangers following this phenomenon.

Good book, very well-written enjoyed it a bit more than My Sister's Keeper by the same author.
Recommended to parents, kids in high school, and even junior high, no matter which side of the coin you're in.

I'm really excited about the new design of the blog, many thanks to: Leelou Free Blog Layouts
Have a wonderful day!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Bronze Horseman trilogy - My journey

In one of her interviews, Paullina Simons has revealed how she first thought of writing this book; It was night, she could not sleep. While staring through her window she all of a sudden saw the two of them - Tatiana and Alexander; she was staring up at him and he was glancing down at her - for he was extremely tall. They were very much in love, and they were starving.

While reading these three books I was constantly thinking what am I going to write when sitting to prepare my review of these books, and honestly now, after I have finished The Summer Garden cannot word my thoughts, however, I am going to try to sum up this journey, for it was long, heartbreaking and beautiful.
Beginning with the fantastic characters; Tatiana on the one hand - so young and freckled, small and blond with the deep ocean green eyes. She is surrounded by a halo of joy and immortal youth.
And we have Alexander on the other hand - Dark and tall (vera tall!!!) with a striking look and presence, Creme Brulee eyes. Strong and manly, simply any females' fantasy guy.
They meet, on the fateful very first day of the Nazi invasion to the Soviet Union, on June 22, 1941. Despite all the obstacles and all the horrible things these two go through their love grows deeper and stronger.
From the very start, and obviously without any warnings you are brutally drawn to the plot, becoming obsessed with the characters and having absolutely nothing else to do but to root and cheer for these two lovers.
A book is measured by the impacts it's left on you, and here I am, a very simple example of an obsessed and addicted fan of this author and this trilogy in particular. I'm now left with a journal FULL of quotes from the three books, FULL of my thoughts and opinion of this trilogy. I'm going to admit - I was skeptical at the beginning, thinking The Bronze Horseman was going to be just another book I will read and eventually put on my bookshelf next to other books I've read, and how was I wrong! Even now, after finishing the third book I'm still unable to let go of Tatiana and Alexander.
It's amazing how a book can change you and what you believe in, I personally never really showed any desire or interest in learning about WWII, but this book has made me want to study and read about this war.
It's amazing how you can be convinced, simply hooked by the believe that a character you've read about in a book might be real. For how could Alexander not exist?!?! For how could my precious Tania have been only a vision? That idea is simply absurd, having Shura and Tatia simply as two characters in a book, I feel like I've known them my whole life!
The Bronze Horseman has made me want to visit Russia, a country I have never showed any interest in, I want to visit St. Petersburg, to walk through the Summer Garden, in The Field of Mars, I want to buy a crème brulée ice cream, to sit on a bench waiting on a bus, to cross and uncross my legs all dressed in a white dress with red dancing roses and green smiling leaves, to hum: "We'll meet again in Lvov, my love and I..." and I want to raise my glance to notice an officer staring at me from across the street...

The Bronze Horseman has opened my eyes and convinced me of finding a true love, now after reading this book I have realised that a true love has been laying in front of my eyes my whole life, the love my parents share for one another, a love that continued to stand force against the cruelty of fate and life.
Baba, Mama, may God bless you with his never ending grace and love.

Leningrad, the white nights of this city, fifth Soviet, The Fields of Mars, St. Isaac's cathedral, The Summer Garden, Lazarevo, Luga, Morozovo Hospital, The Neva, The Kama, Lake Ladoga, The Bronze Horseman sculpture...
All these are going to accompany me day after day for the rest of my life...

And now, two names are added to the list of people I owe them my life:
Paullina Simons: For giving us, her devoted readers the opportunity to fall in love with her amazing characters, and to hope for a love as great as the one our beloved Tania and Shura has.

And to that young fella who introduced me to this book, and begged me in that crowded bookstore to read it "It's the most beautiful historical love story you'll read." He said, and how was he right!

Do yourself a favor, go pick these books from the nearest bookstore, you will not regret it.
Have a great day/night (It's night over here...)