Allgemein, Reviews, U - Z, V

Review: Vicious (V.E. Schwab)

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Rating: 5 Pfoten

Book 11 on My Book List 2019

”Someone could call themselves a hero and still walk around killing dozens. Someone else could be labelled a villain for trying to stop them. Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.”

This is easily one of the best books I’ve read in 2019 and that’s quite something, because I already read so many other awesome books this year. To give “Vicious” 5 paws was a no-brainer though and I’m very glad that my reading buddy saw it the same way. As it seems we were both hooked right from the beginning and the longer we read, the more we immersed ourselves in the story.

I thought long and hard about the many reasons I liked this so much and I think it’s mostly due to the way it was written. V.E. Schwab made her story some sort of puzzle and the longer you read, the more is revealed and every piece eventually falls into place. It wasn’t until I started to write down a few of the quotes that I finally realized why I could relate to her writing style so much. XD It felt like reading one of my forum role-play games. *lol*

Let me explain a little bit more: There are people that will write short posts that cover the basics and then there are people that will write an entire character with its background story and play it out in 900 – 1.000 word posts that stretch over the course of years, sometimes even decades. Yes, you already guessed right, I’m the latter one. ;-P And so it’s no surprise I was intrigued by V.E. Schwab’s handiwork.

There’s a certain depth to her characters you never actually see on the pages, but it’s all there, in their actions, the way they behave. In the way they talk and interact with each other. There’s an entire background story and we get it piece by piece, little by little, but never all of it and to say I was captivated by this would be the understatement of the century. XD I lived and breathed for it, I tasted blood and I crave for more!!! ❤

Next time I’m at the library I’m going to pre-order “Vengeful” and if it’s only half as good as “Vicious” I shall be more than just fine! 😉 This said, I’ll go right into my character’s section because damn, there’s a lot to discuss! XD

2

Welcome to my spoilery spoiler section! Take a seat, make yourself comfortable and enjoy the show! Be warned though, I’m at least as fierce as Victor when it comes to book characters and just like him I won’t sugar-coat things and spoil you not only thoroughly but also relentlessly! ;-P

Eli Cardale (Ever):

”Well, when you wonder something,” said Eli, “doesn’t that mean part of you wants to believe in it? I think we want to prove things, in life, more than we want to disprove them. We want to believe.”

I didn’t like Eli which actually made him the perfect villain. *lol* The funny thing is that I’m pretty certain he’s more human and compassionate than Victor, yet this also seems the be the main reason why he’s worse than him. Am I already confusing you? XD Okay, let me put it this way, whilst Victor’s analytical mind controls his actions the same can’t be said about Eli. When the shit hits the fan Eli is following his gut feeling and because he believes he’s doing the right thing he goes through with it and never second guesses his decisions. I’d even go as far as to say that Eli is some sort of religious fanatic and that he sanctions his actions by his belief. And what is more human and more powerful than people’s beliefs? There are centuries of history that prove how many bad things have been done in the name of religion and Eli’s character is some kind of embodiment of it. He lives by his principles and this doesn’t only make him a very dangerous man, it also makes him very human. Eli is on a mission and everyone who interferes with it will be the next victim on his Ever-growing list. 😉 (see what I did there?! *lol*)

”On the surface, Eli seemed perfectly normal, but now and then Victor would catch a crack, a sideways glance, a moment when his roommate’s face and his words, his look and his meaning, would not line up. Those fleeting slices fascinated Victor. It was like watching two people, one hiding in the other’s skin. And their skin was always too dry, on the verge of cracking and showing the color of the thing beneath.”

”A hero. Wasn’t he? Heroes saved the world from villains, from evil. Heroes sacrificed themselves to do it. Was he not bloodying his hands and his soul to set the world right? Did he not sacrifice himself every time he stripped away an EO’s stolen life?”

”I died begging for the strength to survive, and it was granted. But it’s a trade, Professor, with God or the devil, and I’ve paid for my gift with the lives of my friends. Every EO has sold a part of themselves they can never have back. Don’t you see?” He knelt beside Lyne, whose fingers twitched. “I can’t let anyone else sin so heinously against nature.”

Victor Vale:

”She watched him as he worked, his touch impossibly light, as if he was afraid of breaking her. Everything about him was light – his skin, his hair, his eyes, his hands as they danced through the air above her skin, touching her only when absolutely necessary.”

I absolutely ADORED AND LOVED Victor Vale!!! <333 What an intriguing and morally grey character! I just loved the way he thought! His analytical and cunning mind was everything I ever craved for and even more and I just couldn’t get enough of his character. I loved that he was so unapologetic and that he knew exactly who he was. Yes, he tried to blend in with the others, but he never claimed to be something that he wasn’t. If you ask me I’d say Victor is a psychopath, at least if you consider all the typical signs of it. Then again Eli certainly was one too. He might have been more empathic than Victor but whilst Vic knew what was expected of him, Eli ultimately seemed more inclined to ignore human morals than to follow them. I loved how Victor questioned his actions, how he paused to think if what he did was right or wrong, how he weighted both sides against each other and then eventually decided to do what his logic told him. He was vicious and brutal, but he could also be gentle and caring and boy, did I live for that moral ambiguity. *lol*

”The paper called Eli a hero.
The word made Victor laugh. Not just because it was absurd, but because it posed a question. If Eli really was a hero, and Victor meant to stop him, did that make him a villain?
He took a sip of his drink, tipped his head back against the couch, and decided he could live with that.”

”Victor watched his friend, mesmerized by the transformation. He himself could mimic most emotions and pass them off as his, but mimicking only went so far, and he knew he could never match this … fervor.”

”You can’t kill me, Victor,” said Eli. “You know that.”
Victor’s smile widened as he buried his knife between Eli’s ribs.
“I know,” he said loudly. He had to speak up over the screams. “But you’ll have to indulge me. I’ve waited so long to try.”

Sydney:

”That’s what Sydney was giving these people. A second chance.
Her fingers hovered over the dead man’s chest for a moment as she wondered if he deserved a second chance, then chided herself. Who was she to judge or decide or grant or deny? Simply because she could, did that mean she should?”

Poor little Sydney! I felt so sorry for her! She didn’t choose to have a power like that but she was hunted for it nevertheless. I found it interesting that she was so young but already asked herself the right questions. In some way that made her a good counterweight to Victor and Eli. I mean there is this powerful girl and she has no idea what she can do with her abilities or what she’s capable of. She was a very strong character though and I loved her for her defiance. ❤ It takes guts to live with a man like Victor and she might have questioned his actions but she was never afraid of him. XD

Serena:

”She looked at Victor’s profile one last time, and tried to picture the man who had once been Eli’s friend, who had brought him back, made him what he was, saved her sister … and for a moment, as she finished dialing Eli’s number, she almost wished he stood a fighting chance.”

Now Serena was a character that caused me to think long and hard as well. On the one hand I liked her for standing up to Eli by charming him to do her will, and on the other hand I disliked her for helping him to find and eliminate his targets. If she was so good at compelling people why didn’t she try to stop Eli for good? She played him, yet at the same time she did what he wanted her to do. Why? Did she really think that this was the only way to save her own skin? Did she truly believe that EO’s are dangerous and that they deserve to die? Her character posed so many questions and to my chagrin none of them were answered. >_<  She definitely had one of the best scenes in this book though. The moment Victor killed her and quoted Ulysses was priceless!! ❤

3

Victor & Eli:

”You asked me if I ever wanted to believe in something. I do. I want to believe in this. I want to believe that there’s more.” Victor sloshed a touch of whiskey over the edge of his glass. “That we could be more. Hell, we could be heroes.”
“We could be dead,” said Eli.
“That’s a risk everyone takes by living.”

Ohh those two gave me a lot to wonder about. I’m convinced Victor was in love with Eli and that this was the reason why he wanted his revenge so badly. I mean he was betrayed by the person he loved and to make it even worse Eli didn’t even bother to hear him out. He didn’t give him the benefit of the doubt, no, he ratted him out to the police the moment he knew his girlfriend had died. It was like Eli always expected Victor to go off the rails and only waited for an opportunity to turn on him. Funnily enough it turned out that Eli was the one that actually went off the rails in the end. After all Eli’s girlfriend was the only person Victor killed and this was by accident and not intentional. The same certainly couldn’t be said for Eli though. He killed his victims on purpose and went after them with a vengeance. Sure, once Victor got out of prison his death tally went up as well, he never killed without a purpose or reason though. Which is the main difference between those two. Victor always considered the pros and cons while Eli acted as judge and executioner and didn’t even give his victims a chance to defend themselves, let alone to speak. Now that Eli is in prison I can’t help but wonder what’s going to happen next. I guess I’ll find out once I get my hands on a copy of “Vengeful”. ;-P

”He and Eli were bonded, by blood and death and science. They were alike, more so now than ever. And he had missed Eli. He wanted to see him. And he wanted to see him suffer. He wanted to see the look in Eli’s eyes when he lit them up with pain. He wanted his attention. Eli was like a thorn beneath Victor’s skin, and it hurt. He could turn off every nerve in his body, but Victor couldn’t do a damned thing about the twinge he felt when he thought of Cardale.”

”I don’t want to see Serena,” said Sydney.
“I know,” said Victor. “But I want to see Eli.”
“Why?” she asked. “You can’t kill him.”
“That may be.” His fingers curled around the shovel. “But half the fun is trying.”

Sydney & Victor:

”I’m cold,” she said.
“I’m Victor,” he said, and she offered him a small, exhausted flicker of a smile.

Their relationship was so precious! ❤ Victor became some sort of father figure for Sydney and even though she knew that he had a bad moral compass she still trusted him and felt safe with Victor. I loved that he was always so honest with her and didn’t even try to sugar-coat things. He gave her room to come to her own conclusions and he provided a safe environment to live in. In some way that made him an amazing father even though he certainly wasn’t the best choice to raise a kid like her. *lol* Still, those two worked because Sydney acted as some sort of conscience for him and that ultimately made him a better person. XD I wonder if their relationship is going to change after she brought him back from the dead and if yes in which direction it’s going to head. Oh and I just realized that Vic joined Eli in not being able to age. 😉

”Sydney, look at me.” He rested his hands on the car roof and leaned in. “No one is going to hurt you. Do you know why?” She shook her head, and Victor smiled. “Because I’ll hurt them first.”

”Serena hadn’t told Sydney to go home. She hadn’t told her to run away. She’d told her to go somewhere safe. And over the course of the last week, safe had ceased to be a place for Sydney, and had become a person.
Specifically, safe had become Victor.”

Sydney & Serena:

”I like that we’re finally different,” said Sydney, fighting back a shiver. “I don’t want to be you.”
Silence fell between the sisters. A silence full of shifting pieces.
“I don’t need you to be me,” said Serena at last. “But I need you to be brave. I need you to be strong.”

To say their relationship was complicated wouldn’t even get close to the truth. I don’t know why Serena called Sydney and wanted her to visit them. I don’t know why she felt the need to kill her little sister and I have absolutely no clue why she decided to save her in the end. Feelings and relationships are complex but damn those two sisters put this on an entirely new level. *lol* Serena didn’t have to tell Eli about Sydney and she definitely didn’t have to bring her to him, yet she still did. I guess I’ll never find out why. Serena was silenced by Victor and after her remains were burned I doubt that Sydney will be able to revive her. There might come a new character that’s able to do it though. With Schwab you never know. *lol* Some gut feeling tells me that there’ll be more about her motives in the next book. Mhmm…. As for now the only question that’s on my mind is the following: What is going to happen when Sydney finds out that Victor killed her sister??!!! O_o I’m kinda afraid of finding out. XD

”Why did Victor have to do this? Why did he and Eli have to find each other? But even as she asked it, she knew the answer. She knew because her own pulse still quickend defiantly at the thought of Serena, because even as reason told her to run as far from her sister as possible, the gravity of want drew Sydney back. She couldn’t break the orbit.”

Serena & Eli:

”She pulled away enough to hold him with her cold blue eyes. He could see the devil in them, silver-tongued and cunning, and Eli thought, not for the first time, that he should have killed her when he had the chance.”

Serena and Eli had one of the most abusive relationships I ever witnessed. They both abused each other in equal measure and this was weirdly fascinating. Their dynamic was crazy and they both didn’t hesitate to use their powers in order to get what they wanted. I think in some way they even loved each other, yet they both couldn’t change the way they were. Eli craved to kill Serena but was fascinated by her and Serena wanted to stay alive but couldn’t seem to be able to turn away from Eli. What a stalemate. XD Wicked faerie tongues (like mine) would say Victor relieved them from the trouble of killing each other and they might be right. *lol*

4

I loved this and I could kick myself for not reading it sooner! “Vicious” was the amazing start of a compelling story and I can’t wait to read its sequel “Vengeful”. Morally grey characters, a captivating storyline and the omnipresent question of what is right and what is wrong made this a truly thrilling journey! I don’t know about you, but I want more! 😉

Last but not least I want to thank Mr. Babygreys for another great buddy read! It’s always a pleasure to read books with you and I’m glad our reading habits and preferences are so similar. *lol* We seem to be on a roll, let’s keep those books coming! ;-P

Allgemein, Reviews, U - Z, W

Review: Wintersong (S. Jae-Jones)

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Rating: 4 Pfoten

Book 12 on My Book List 2019

”The last night of the year,” Constanze said. “Now the days of winter begin and the Goblin King rides abroad, searching for his bride.”

I don’t know about you, but I was so intrigued by this sentence, that I had to continue to read the entire book and I’m very glad to say that I wasn’t disappointed. “Wintersong” truly gave me everything I expected to read … and then some. XD It was obvious that Jae-Jones did her research and even though there were a few things that bugged me, she still did a great job at including the German myth of the “Erlkönig”.

As someone who grew up in Austria it was impossible to avoid Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s work, but since he’s one of my favourite poets “Der Erlkönig” always held a special place in my heart. I mean it’s a poem about a faerie king who tries to seduce a father’s son. And it’s a very haunting and suspenseful piece of work as well. ❤ So if you haven’t read it yet, I totally recommend you to read it before you start with this book. It will give you an idea about the Erlkönig’s true nature and I think Jae-Jones nailed this side of the faerie king more than just well. *lol*

Speaking of which, this book was so dark, twisted and artful I just couldn’t get enough of it. The Underground, the atmosphere, the goblins, the revels, the changelings, the myth of the Lorelei, just everything!!! It was such a pleasure to read this and the writing style was so beautiful that I could have cried. ❤ I loved that the author created such a unique world and that you couldn’t help but sympathize with Liesl and the Goblin King. They both had their roles to play and they did it as best as they could. XD

If there was anything I didn’t like then it were the German spelling mistakes or the frequent use of the phrase “the austere young man”. I know why Jae-Jones used this kind of wording to describe the human side of the Goblin King, but after reading it for the 100th time I got as tired of it as of Sarah J. Maas use of the word “mate” or the phrase “my inner goddess” in 50 Shades of Grey. *lol*
There are a lot of other words that could have been used instead of “austere” and giving it a little bit of thought I already come up with “grave, serious, demure, solemn, severe, stern” the list could probably go on and on… I really loved this book but the constant repetition of “austere” took away a little bit of my enjoyment.

Plus: Can we agree that it’s “Gugelhupf” and not “Gugelhopf”? *lol* I know I’m a bean counter now, but as a person that loves to eat “Gugelhupf” I really couldn’t read it spelled like that. XD Still, as far as I could find out Jae-Jones has no German background so she actually did a great job at including the language and its legends. XD

I’m really looking forward to read “Shadowsong” soon, because it just can’t end like this! There’s got to be a solution and I’m so ready to be swept away by it. *lol*

2

You are entering the realm of the Goblin King and if you don’t want to be spoiled you better leave his domain. 😉 The Underground is dangerous and our changelings love to confuse mortal estrays. Oh, and they bite. ;-P *lol*

Liesl aka Elisabeth:

“After all, I was not a child of beauty; I was a child of the queer, the strange, and the wild.“

Now Liesl was a character I could totally relate to. She loved music and composed her own pieces and she found a lot of enjoyment in listening to other people play. I’m pretty much the same, I love to write lyrics and to compose a melody to them, but I also appreciate it when I can close my eyes and someone else plays or sings for me. If they are really good I might even be moved to tears. (Yes, this actually happens!!) So imagine me starting to read this book and finding our MC Liesl! It was amazing! Not only because of the musical aspect but also because we both seemed to be pretty alike when it comes to being in the background. *lol* It’s not that Elisabeth was a shy or quiet character, quite the contrary, she’s outspoken, passionate, outgoing, headstrong, brave, pretty stubborn and compassionate but because of her family and the expectations they had she never even got a proper chance to fulfil her potential. In her father’s eyes Josef was the better musician and because of that he neglected Liesl. And in all honesty this was one of the main reasons my heart bled for her. T_T During her time in the Underground she eventually found her own voice though and even though it hurt to see her waste away, it was still good to know that she was finally doing something for herself! XD Her escape at the end didn’t come as a surprise but I really want to know what happened to the poor Goblin King!!! >_<

”I had watched him study me, and knew now how he had become the most sublime interpreter of my art. He was as familiar to me as the sound of my own voice.”

”I wanted to bend the entire world – both above and below – to what I needed. For once. Just once. Light my flame, mein Herr, I thought. Light my fire, and watch me burn.”

”I got up from the bed. With each step forward, the Goblin King retreated, but when I had his back pressed against the wall, he could run no farther from me. I placed my hands on his chest, a light touch, and rose up onto my toes to whisper in his ear.
“I came back,” I murmured. “Of my own free will.”

The Goblin King aka Der Erlkönig:

“You are clever. I do not offer this gift to you out of the goodness of my heart, but out of a selfish need to see what you might do with it.”

I absolutely loved and adored the Goblin King!!! Seriously, this character was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!!! <333 Jae-Jones did such a great job at turning him into a complex and morally grey character and even though I didn’t agree with many of the things he did, I still couldn’t help but like him. I mean the Erlkönig is super manipulative, he does what needs to be done, he doesn’t even shy away from using Käthe as leverage to get what he wants, yet at the same time he feels conflicted about his actions. It was obvious that he loved Liesl and that he didn’t want to hurt her, but if he needed to do it in order to save his people he still went for it regardless of his own feelings for her. I mean woah!!! If that isn’t the embodiment of a tortured character then I really don’t know. *lol* The Goblin King just couldn’t change the way he was, because his humanity was at least as much a part of him as the role of being the Lord of the Underground. Both were facets of his character but ultimately his body and soul were bound to his duty as the Goblin King. Talk about feeling torn! >_< It made me sad that he was forced to let Liesl go, but I could understand why he did it. In the end his heart won and he could no longer bear to watch her die. =(( My poor Erlkönig is all alone now though. *sniff*

”There was a grace to every line of his body; elegance was not only in his air, but in the way he moved. Even when he was awkward. Even when he was unsure.”

”Coerced is such a strong word,” he said. “I like to think I am persuasive on my own merits.”
“She thinks you are a Hungarian count.”
He waved his hand. “We all have our flaws.”

”I would take my violin and play.” The words were spoken almost before his lips could catch up to what he was saying. “I would walk the world and play, until someone called me by name and called me home.”

”What will happen to you if I win?” I whispered.
A smile crossed his lips, but the corners were downturned, more sad than satisfied. “You know,” he said. “You’re the only one who’s ever asked.”

Käthe:

”Then it became clear just what Käthe’s greatest dream had been: to marry rich. Not for fancy gowns or expensive jewels, but to provide for her family.”

Mhmm Käthe. I liked her because she wasn’t the doll everyone expected her to be. There was a lot of depth to her character once you actually bothered to take a closer look. XD It was obvious that she loved Liesl and even though it took Liesl quite some time to realize this, she eventually did it in the end. I think in some way Käthe reminded me of my own sister, because she was also one of those girls (still is) that draws the stares of people. Just like Käthe my sister never seems to realise that people are looking her way and I could totally relate to Liesl in that regard. It’s not easy to be in the shadow of your sister and Elisabeth’s frustration was more than just palpable for me. Still, Liesl and I love our sisters dearly and we both would go to hell and back (or in this particular case rather the Underground) in order to save them from the Goblin King. *lol* 😉

“The fluttered and flirted outrageously, carefully oblivious to the stares she drew like moths to the flame. Both men and women traced the lines of her body, the curve of her cheek, the pout of her lip.”

”That one,” the merchant said, pointing to Käthe, whose head lolled against my shoulder, “burns like kindling. All flash, and no real heat. But you,” he said. “You smolder, mistress. There is a fire burning within you, but it is a slow burn. It shimmers with heat, waiting only for a breath to fan it to life.”

3

Liesl & The Goblin King:

”Oh, Elisabeth,” he said. “You foolish, foolish girl. How easily you give me your trust.”
“I play the hand I am dealt.”
“Yes, and by my rules.” The tips of his teeth glinted. “Beware, Elisabeth. You may prefer the pretty lie to the ugly truth.”

Now those two were a really intriguing couple! *lol* I loved their dynamic and it was refreshing to see that Elisabeth could unnerve the Goblin King at least as much as he was able to unnerve her. XD That scene when she surprised him in his bedchamber and teased him about their supposedly spent night?! XD Just awesome! It showed how human and shy the Erlkönig could be and since this was in stark contrast to his usual swagger I couldn’t help but grin while I read it. *lol* Still, what I probably loved the most about them was their profound recognition of each other’s soul. They knew exactly who the other was and yes, Liesl never got to know the Goblin King’s true name, but that didn’t stop her from seeing his true self. It was beautiful to watch them grow together, to see how their mutual love for music was able to connect them in ways that trumped every physical and carnal experience. They were so perfect for each other and yet they still couldn’t be. Because Liesl would have died a slow death if she would have stayed with the Erlkönig and because he loved her so much he couldn’t bear to watch it happen. Their love is truly tragic and the ending broke my heart. T_T I knew it was bound to end like that but it was still so sad! I really need to read “Shadowsong” asap, because those two deserve a HEA and I hope Jae-Jones will give it to them! (And me, of course!! *lol*)

”My soul thrilled with recognition at the sight of his face, but the reality of him frightened me. He was an old friend in myth and legend; he was a stranger in breath and body.”

”Why did you marry me, if not for this?”
This time it was the Goblin King who stumbled back, as though I had slapped him. “If you thought that I wanted –“

”You were angry when you wrote this, weren’t you? I can see the rage, the impotence, in your notes.” Then he looked up. “Oh, Elisabeth,” he breathed. “You wrote this on your – on our wedding night, didn’t you?”

”I am,” he whispers, “the monster I warned you against.”
“You are,” I say hoarsely, “the monster I claim.”

Liesl & Sepperl:

“Think you that our music comes from God? No, it comes from below. From him. The Ruler Underground.”

Sepperl was a really sweet boy and I wish I would have had a chance to get to know him better. Unfortunately he was only a short part of the book and most of the things we read about him were from Liesl’s memory or from the short glimpses we got to see while he was away from her. Still, I loved that he and Elisabeth had such a strong connection and I hope that we’ll get to see more of him in the second book. Since he’s one of the Goblin King’s Changelings, I’m pretty certain that he’ll have an important part in “Shadowsong” though. XD

”Your soul rests within you, Sepperl.” I lightly touched my hand to his breast. “Here. That’s where your music comes from. Not from the land. Not from the woods outside.”
“I don’t know.” Josef buried his face in his hands. “But I am afraid. I am afraid of the bargain I struck with the stranger in my dreams. But now you understand why I’m too terrified to leave.”


4

“Wintersong” was everything I wanted to read and even more! This book had the makings of a dark faerie tale and occasionally even managed to give me some serious “The Phantom of the Opera” vibes. If you like dark and mysterious books, if you’re a big fan of music and faeries and if you enjoy a lush and vivid writing style… Well, then “Wintersong” most certainly will be the right choice for you. 😉

Allgemein, Reviews, U - Z, V

Review: VOX (Christina Dalcher)

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Rating: 3 Pfoten

Book 28 on My Book List 2019

”Patrick never seemed to mind my weekly escapes, although he’d joke about us sometimes, before there wasn’t anything left to joke about. We were, in his words, the voices that couldn’t be hushed.
Well. So much for the infallibility of Patrick.”
I went into this knowing full well that the injustice that happens in this book would make me more than just a little angry, but in fact Christina Dalcher’s book made me so furious that I decided to steer clear of the dystopian science fiction genre for a while. As it seems I just can’t stomach fictional worlds like the one in this book and I don’t know if that makes me a sissy or just a very compassionate human being. *lol* I’d like to believe I’m the latter one but I’m the first one to admit that I’ve an extremely thin skin when it comes to wrongfulness.Well, I guess there are worse things than a wish for justice and an allergy to its counterpart, right? Still, the injustice wasn’t the only topic that rubbed me the wrong way and it’s due to those many other issues that I couldn’t give the book more than 3 paws. Maybe I’m just not made for the dystopian genre but the way those stories are told always feels slightly detached. At least to me it does. I should have screamed and felt with the MC and part of me did when I read what happened to Jean and how her boys (especially Steven) treated her, but despite the injustice that got me boiling I still didn’t feel all too connected to the MC.

”You think I should garden and cook more? You think the work I do is less important than – I don’t know – crafts?”
“Not you, Mom. Other women. The ones who just wanna get out of the house and have some kind of identity.”

So you might say that I got angry because of the books circumstances but not because of Jean? Does that make sense? *lol* Anyway if we’re already talking about things I had issues with, I might as well mention that I was unhappy about the use of religion to justify what happened. Sure, you might say that people did (and still do) a lot of wrong things in the name of religion and to use it as a tool in order to create a dystopian world is nothing new. Agreed: In fact it’s been done so often that I can’t read it anymore. I heard voices that said Dalcher is dragging Christianity in the mud and I heard voices that said it was a well-developed plot device… As for me? Honest answer?

I’m just tired of authors using religion as a tool in order to paint a picture of their dystopian world. I read 3 dystopian books this year and all of them had a religious motive. No matter if it was “Station Eleven”, “The Power” or “Vox” they all used it and I’m probably the only person who’s not happy with that. *lol* I guess I just want diversity and unique ideas in my dystopians as well? *shrugs*

”Of course, there aren’t any two-mommy or two-daddy families anymore; the children of same-sex partnerships have all been moved to live with their closest male relative – an uncle, a grandfather, an older brother – until the biological parent remarries in the proper way.”

Sooo, did I already mention how angry and furious this book made me? Yes? Then let’s move on. I think the worst thing about Jean’s situation was the fact that she had only hundred words to raise her children and that her boys as well as her husband seemed to be okay with that. Of course they were, imagine how lovely your life could be if your mother had no way to reprimand you. Gosh, I don’t even want to think about it! *lol*

As the mom of a little rascal I know exactly what I’m talking about and believe me, if I had only a 100 words my kid would do what it wants and cause havoc all day! XD You need to talk with your kids, it’s very important and with restricting women to only 100 words it’s a wonder their world still worked. >_<

”It’s a life choice, Mom,” Steven said. “If you can choose one sexuality, you can just as easily choose another. That’s all they’re trying to do.”

Urgh, do I even have to mention how wrong this sentence is? I really didn’t like Steven and even though he was just a kid I still think that he did a lot of horrible and bad things. Poor Jean. =( As for the plot, I believe the idea was a good one but for me it lacked finesse in the execution. There were so many things that made no sense and left me with even more questions and the way the ending was resolved was so convenient that I couldn’t help myself and actually said: “What?! That’s it?” when I finished the final page.

To me it feels like there went a lot of energy into explaining the circumstances and the way life felt like for the MC and the other women in the book, but there was hardly any effort put into explaining how the men lived. What they did, if they were okay with their women being silenced. If they struggled with this change too.

Throughout the entire book we just get one side of the coin and I still ask myself the question: Why did they even decide that the words of women should be counted? To make them docile and obedient? Is that really the only motive? I have no clue where Dalcher wanted to go with this book, what the government actually planned to do or where the plot was supposed to head and this left me even more confused.

I’m sure some of you who read the book will say: „Why? It’s so logical!“ And if you are one of those people please feel free to enlighten me in the comments! I’d really appreciate some input there because for me it made no sense how it all ended. Especially the “cure and elicitor” aspect at the end of the book! What for?! Only women or men as well? Why take such drastic measures? I’ve the same feeling I had after finishing the TV series “Lost”: I don’t understand the ending. *lol*

4

“Vox” had some good ideas and they certainly brought a breath of fresh air to the dystopian genre, the longer I read the more I got confused though. The plot was thin and had quite some weaknesses I couldn’t overlook and the ending… well let’s just say it was way too convenient to be true.

spoiler

How practical that Jeans husband Patrick died and she could ride into the sunset with her kids and her lover Lorenzo!! *shakes head*

 

Don’t let my review keep you from reading it though! Maybe you’re one of the people who get it and if you do, I genuinely hope you’ll explain it to me! *lol* ;-P

Allgemein, U - Z, W

Review: We Were Liars (E. Lockhart)

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Rating:4 Pfoten

”We were warm and shivering,
and young and ancient,
and alive.“

When I began to read this book I went in completely blind and had absolutely no clue what it was about. The blurb on the back didn’t tell me anything about the plot and everything I knew was that “We Were Liars” had apparently won the YA Goodreads Choice Award in 2014.
So yeah, I just decided to read it and hoped it would be good and looking at it in retrospective this actually was the best decision I could have made! ;-P

Because let’s face it, this book will mess with your head big time.
The Liars will make you wonder, they’ll make you question what happened in summer 15 and you’ll not only become curious but you’ll also feel a need to read on. XD

”Silence is a protective coating over pain.”

Of course there are plenty of hints, but will you be able to figure them out or will you be in the dark until the end?
I guess by now you already realised that this isn’t one of my typical reviews and yes, you’re right. I won’t write anything about the plot. Sorry?! No, I think I’m not. *lol*

”A brute beneath a pleasant surface, betraying his kindness in letting me come to his sheltered island every year – I’ve betrayed him by seducing his Catherine, his Cadence. And my penance is to become the monster he always saw in me.”

This is a book you’ll have to experience for yourself! And I want you all to scream: ”WHAT THE FREAKING HELL!!??” when you finally reach the ending. Haha!
And before you ask, yes I screamed it loud and clear!!! XD This story is a mindfuck and even my (usually very) observant mind wasn’t ready for the finale! ;-P

So all I’m going to do is to give you a little character description. The rest you’ll have to figure out on your own. XD

Meet the Liars:

Mirren:
”She is sugar. She is curiosity and rain.”
”Be a little kinder than you have to.”

Johnny:
”He is bounce. He is effort and snark.”
”Never eat anything bigger than your ass.”

Gat:
”Do not accept an evil you can change.”
”His nose was dramatic, his mouth sweet. Skin deep borwn, hair black and waving. Body wired with energy. Gat seemed spring-loaded. Like he was searching for something. He was contemplation and enthusiasm. Ambition and strong coffee. I could have looked at him forever.”

Cady:
”Always do what you are afraid to do,” I say.
”These days she is a gnarled crone, touching the raw flesh of my brain with her cruel fingernails. She pokes my exposed nerves, exploring whether she’ll take up residence in my skull. If she gets in, I’m confined to my bedroom for a day or maybe two.”

Are you curious and intrigued already?

If yes, I hope you’ll enjoy the book as much as I did. It was a really nice and fast read and it definitely exceeded my expectations.
No! Truth be told, it completely messed with my mind.
But we all love deliberate confusion, don’t we? ;-P

”I suffer migraines. I do not suffer fools.
I like a twist of meaning.”