Thursday, May 7, 2015

Great Book Links for May 7th 2015

Here's a list of 40 short novels from List Muse that will help you be well read in no time. 

 I've read 13/40.  How about you?

Neil deGrasse Tyson thinks all intelligent people should read these 8 books. 

I haven't read any of them to completion.  Do you agree with Neil?  Which book would you add?

People who say they don't have time to read are lying.  

They are simply prioritizing other things in their life, which is fine.  But for those that want to read more books without increasing the amount of time they spend reading, there is this infographic.  All under 200 pages, these books will give you more bang for your buck.   

I'm at 15/55.  Where do you stand?

Huffpo has some more of those beautiful library photos that are always floating around.

What's fun about these is they are not only beautiful, they are also improbable.  And they are fascinating.  What do you think?  Have you seen enough unusual/beautiful libraries?  Or is there no such thing as too many libraries?

So, have you seen Avengers: Age of Ultron????

 I haven't yet, but here's a list of books to read if you absolutely cannot get enough superheroes in your life.  I've actually read 4 of the 12 which was a surprise.  If you haven't already, run don't walk to get the Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Book Review: Steelheart

Imagine if the people in the world started developing super powers.  The only problem was, they were all becoming supervillains and not superheroes.  The world as we know it has ended and instead of serving and protecting, these supervillains known as Epics are subjugating the weak and destroying what remains of the country.  This is the premise of Steelheart, by Brandon Sanderson.

These Epics have taken over all of our major cities, like Chicago, now known as Newcago.  Newcago has been thrust into darkness by an Epic named Nighwielder and turned completely to steel by the titular character, Steelheart.

The hero of our story David, watched Steelheart murder his father years prior, and has since vowed to kill Steelheart by any means necessary.  The problem is Epics as strong as Steelheart old have one weakness, but David believes he may be able to figure it out since witnessing his father's death years ago and seeing Steelheart bleed.  He'll have to join up with the Reckoners, and post-apocalyptic resistance who have been locating and killing Epics all around the country.

Steelheart is the first book in the Reckoners trilogy by Brandon Sanderson.   It is a great underdog story that teaches the value of hope and perseverance.  The main character is an 18 year old so it is suited for young adults, but adults will find it just as entertaining.  There are lots of really great characters, whether they be the monstrous Epics or Reckoner heroes.  Steelheart is available in paperback for $9.99 + tax.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Book Review: The Infinte Sea by Rick Yancey

The Infinite Sea, by Rick Yancey is the sequel to the 2013 bestseller, The 5th Wave.  Click here for a review of The 5th Wave I wrote in 2013.  I really enjoyed the first book, and the second took me a little while to get into, but I liked it just as much as the first one.

The sequel, like its predecessor, is told from the point of view of children and teenagers who survived the plague that killed most of the people who lived on Earth. The plague was caused by an alien species called the Others who want to inhabit the Earth.  The story begins from the point of view of Ringer, a female teenage soldier.  After the events that culminated in the destruction of Camp Haven, our main characters have holed up in a decrepit hotel, and need to move before they are discovered by the Others and killed.

One of the driving themes of this particular story is the desperate quest to maintain a part of your humanity in the face of the complete destruction of the world.  The only reason to fight so hard to continue on is to preserve the part of us that makes humanity worth saving, although it would be easier to continue the fight and to survive without it.  It's an interesting dichotomy that is presented over and over again in these stories.  The kids have had to become soldiers, and their teachers have attempted to rid them of everything that makes them human, but at the same time they are still just kids, which is obvious in their interactions and when they let their guards down.  The story does have echoes of Ender's Game in that respect.  But there is a huge reveal in this book that renders that comparison no longer valid.  Yancey could have just used this book to further the story and reunite Cassie and Evan, the couple from the previous novel.  But he doesn't, he furthers the story so that all of the main characters are closer to the truth, which is something they had never imagined.

The Infinite Sea is available on sale in hardcover for $16.99 as is its predecessor The 5th Wave.  They're good books certainly worth your read in the post-apocalyptic tradition of the Hunger Games, Divergent and the aforementioned Ender's Game.