odelia reviews: ready player one by ernest cline

Ready Player One
Ernest Cline
Standalone
(3.60)
Goodreads

world = mind blown.

the world is this book was spectacular and how can’t it be? IT’S ALL ABOUT VIDEO GAMES. because i’m not much of a gamer – although i tried to play games but stopped due to the conclusion that i suck – i didn’t understand most of what the hell this kid is talking about. BUT IT’S OKAY.

i have no idea what an Atari 2600 is, no clue on what Joust is, zero knowledge about Swordquest. basically, i’m a noob in video games. all the games i played – and are good at – are Cooking Mama, a Charlotte’s Web video game and those weird Wii sports. i’m crappy as hell at Pacman!

but even though of my complete noobness of video games, i still had a great time reading this. if you’re worried you won’t understand this book because of its constant reference at video games, don’t worry! just pretend you know it and it’ll be fine. take it from me.

the world is so well thought of. you will not find any trace of laziness even if you analyzed each and every part of the world. it’s fantastic. if you’re a gamer, pretty much, just marry this book.

aaaaaaand, that’s where the compliments stop.

yes, the world is great. but when it comes to the characters or the writing style and that kind of stuff, it kinda goes downhill.

first and foremost, if you don’t know, this book is about James Halliday who found this software called OASIS. it’s basically a super cool software that the whole world uses. it’s more popular than Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook combined. and because of this software, he earns a ton of money. instead of donating it and helping the whole world – which most of its residents are either in poverty, hungry or dead – he makes a contest. when you win the contest, you get the money. you could say he’s the most generous man ever. not.

seriously, wtf?

okay then, let’s talk: characters.

they’re missing something called, ah, personality. and correct me if i’m wrong but personality is kind of a … necessity on being a good character. they are not good characters.

okay fine, they do have personality. BUT it’s forced. it doesn’t feel real. it’s not such of a major bad thing but it was quite disappointing.

and the reason why, is that this protagonist, wade, is antisocial and has no real friends. so he’s always alone. there is NO character development around the other characters BECAUSE WE CAN’T SEE THEM BEING DEVELOPED DUE TO THE REASON THEY’RE NOT THERE. i can’t know a person more if i don’t see them often. characters can’t be developed unless they’re always there and you can actually see them change. in this case, no.

and about wade, our hero? well, he’s dumb as hell.

Scenario Numero Uno:
after doing something that NO ONE has ever done for five years, wade becomes an instant celebrity. and what better way to spend your first day than being a show off and chatting with the enemy of the whole gunter community IN THEIR HEADQUARTERS? i mean, no one wants to claw the classified information out of your head and into theirs and later killing you, right? wrong.

Scenario Numero Dos:
just like every teenager in these books, wade falls in loooooove. not just that, he falls in love with a girl he had never met IN REAL LIFE! bonus round, he tells all about his personal and private life to said girl even if she clearly doesn’t trust you with hers! wow! smart! intelligent! awesome!

*sighs*

even though i was a bit harsh (jk i was really harsh) i still like this book immensely. i gave four stars. well, actually, 3.60 which is high, okay. HIGH RATING.

i definitely recommend this book to you just mind these small annoying bits.

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odelia reviews: the ocean at the end of the lane by neil gaiman


The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Neil Gaiman
Standalone
★★★★ (4.39)
Goodreads

(old review)

“I do not miss childhood, but I miss the way I took pleasure in small things, even as greater things crumbled. I could not control the world I was in, could not walk away from things or people or moments that hurt, but I took joy in the things that made me happy.”

You know that feeling. Watching a good movie – maybe one that you cried in – then suddenly, it ends. Now, you have to face the bitter truth of reality: That things don’t last.

It’s like this book. I thought I would be forever lost in this town with the Hempstocks and the small yet fascinating world with its oceans and fleas. But alas, nothing really lasts. And it’s hard to accept that. But as I finished this book, I can’t help but feel: yes, the story did end. But it also stopped living in those ruffled pages and came to rest in my heart, as stories always do.

Sentimental? Yeah, I know.

I just love Neil Gaiman’s books so much. His writing is magical. It hooks you until your eyes are squinted from reading too much. Being a writer, reading his writing style makes me want to jump up and down with happiness and glare in jealousy. But I didn’t do the latter part. I couldn’t. His books are too amazing. (But I did do the first one. Multiple times)

(Usually, this is the time wherein I would quote something in his book that has amazing writing. But if I do that, I’ll write the whole book.)

I didn’t know this was fantasy. So when things suddenly started flying, I was confused as fudge. So a reminder: This is fantasy.

It’s hard to find a stand-alone fantasy book. It’s even harder to find a 180 paged one. See, Neil Gaiman has talent. Amazing, practiced, extraordinary, exceptional talent. My self-esteem has literally flown out the window.

And have you ever noticed that the main character has no name?! AND I DIDN’T EVEN NOTICE THAT UNTIL HALFWAY OF THE BOOK.

Now, let me leave you with some of his quotes.

“I lived in books more than I lived anywhere else.”

“Nobody looks like what they really are on the inside. You don’t. I don’t. People are much more complicated than that. It’s true of everybody.”

“Monsters come in all shapes and sizes, Some of them are things people are scared of. Some of them are things that look like things people used to be scared of a long time ago. Sometimes monsters are things people should be scared of, but they aren’t.”

“Nothing’s ever the same,” she said. “Be it a second later or a hundred years. It’s always churning and roiling. And people change as much as oceans.”

“Be boring, knowing everything.”

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odelia reviews: dash & lily’s book of dares by rachel cohn and david levithan

Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares
Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Standalone
★★★★  (3.82)
Goodreads

(old review)

YA contemporaries don’t appeal to me anymore after i’ve read that dreadful book called “this is what happy looks like”. *shudders* i’ve been scarred for life, honestly.

but DANG this book was better than i excepted.

pretty much most of the YA contemporaries i’ve read (which is not a lot. *shudders* “this is what happy looks like” was the LAST STRAW) falls into two categories: The Cliché and The Not-So-Cliché. im very proud to say that this book falls in the latter category.

The Not So Cliché Plot
a lot of YA contemporaries plots’ do not appeal to me for some odd reason (BECAUSE I FEEL LIKE THEY’RE ALL LIKE THIS IS WHAT HAPPY LOOKS LIKE) and so i thought that this won’t appeal to me too. but when my sister – a hater of YA and everything in it – said this book was actually “good”, i was sold. and it was. the plot centers about a very bored girl who makes – can you guess what? – a book of dares. and this guy picks them up and does it. it kind of adds a bit of mystery to the book, so it basically isn’t just about two teenagers falling in love.

The Not So Cliché Romance
i think a lot of YA contemporaries have these flow of events:

guy >> girl >> they meet >> they flirt >> they FALL IN LOVE IMMEDIATELY >> they have a relationship >> they have problems in their relationship >> those problems are fixed OR are faced with hope, love, and fairy dust. >> the end.

but in this book, it’s not like that! (thank goodness) it’s short and it focuses on how Dash and Lily fall in love and meet. their meeting takes time which is good since so many YA characters are ready to throw themselves at each other after 5 days.

and now, the Not So Cliché category is divided into little categories called The Okay and The Not Okay

The Okay
Dash. i just wish teenage guys were more like this, you know? it’s a relief to know that there are still guys in YA who are not completely intense, totally hot and DULL. so much main character guys in YA have no sense of humor! they’re all so intense and apparently have deep thoughts about the universe. plus, he loves books and words. i love him.

The Not Okay
Lily. i like her … enough. she was great at the beginning and absolutely messed up her character when she met the Edgar guy. she was funny and awesome until she decided that she wants to kiss this guy who made her school life a living hell. dude, wtf?

Complete Strangers. look, i get it adds adventure and spice to your world but playing games with a stranger? N O. lily, you best be happy that your play buddy isn’t a creepy old man. yes, put some adventure in your life but not that kind of adventure. goodness.

conclusion: this book was not like that other one that tells you what happy looks like.

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odelia reviews: shadow and bone by leigh bardugo

Shadow and Bone
Leigh Bardugo
1/3 of Grisha
(1.60)
Goodreads

one word, seven letters, describes the whole book: typical.

let me tell you what this book is about: girl is orphan. girl is ordinary. just kidding, girl actually have powers. girl has power in which no one has. girl is chosen one. there is love triangle. one guy is blond and likes to bang girls in his spare time. one guy is serious and hot and leader of the powerful people called grisha. she has crush at blond guy but blond guy no like her. then girl becomes pretty and has curves, blond guy like her! but omg! hot leader likes her too! omg!! love triangle! also: they’re all white!

that is the plot of 736261613 ya books i have read and to be frank with you, i’m sick of it. 

i’m sick of these stupid protagonists and these hot and dull love interests. i’m sick of the lack of world building. i’m sick of the boring writing style. 

i could stop writing and stop my review here, but i won’t. let me tear the book apart for you.

who’s who

alina. she has dark hair. she has *this* bit of a personality. the two hot guys want her. basically, your ordinary ya female protagonist. good thing she isn’t blond!

the boy was short and stocky, shy but always smiling. the girl was different and she knew it.

oh no, watch out!!! she’s DIFFERENT!! WHO WOULD HAVE KNOWN????

mal. 

i’d been nervous about meeting new people. but a lot of girls had been excited to befriend me, and Ruby had been the most eager. those friendships lasted as long as it took me to figure out that their only interest in me lay in my proximity to Mal. 

a girl leaned out of the window. she had curling black hair and wore a hat of a silver fox. she scanned the watching crowd and predictably, her eyes lingered on Mal. 

as i opened the door, i heard a giggle, and a female voice called from somewhere in the dark room, “if it’s that tracker [Mal], tell him to come inside and keep me warm.” 

what? another ya love interest with girls drooling after him???OHMYGOSH! SO MUCH ORIGINALITY!

let me guess … with so much girls chasing him, he’s in love with …. hmmm? who could it be? the ya female protagonist or the ya female protagonist? so many choices!

darkling.

he’s hot. he’s a leader. he’s super serious and has gray eyes. he has abs. totally swoon worthy! NOT.

personally, i think he’s creepy just meeting him. i mean, look at me right in the eye and say this isn’t creepy:

“yes,” i said.
is he any good?”
“what?” i was finding it hard to concentrate. the darkling’s thumb was still moving back and forth, tracing the length of the scar on my palm. 

he reached out and tapped my collarbone – even that brief contact was enough to send a jolt of surety through me.  

she just met the guy and he’s touching her randomly. if you’re a human and thinks, you would not let him do that. you would ignore him, avoid him because that is creepy as hell. and she’s turned on. wtf

the world

can you believe that this was inspired by Russian culture? can you believe bc of that, i was excited to read this book?

i will honestly tell you that i have more cats than how much world building there is in this book.

i mean, this is such a great concept! RUSSIA. it’s RUSSIA. how the hell can’t that be cool? yet it wasn’t.

i’m sure if the author focused more on the beautiful world instead of throwing some random Russian words or something and calling it world building, or putting one or two paragraphs about it, this book might have been great. if we actually explored and experienced the world more thoroughly, i maybe would have liked this book.

tough luck, i guess.

if you have any plan reading this, no. just don’t. don’t even think about it. don’t even touch this with a ten feet pole. you’ll learn nothing important that hasn’t already been portrayed and showed in a better way.

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odelia reviews: ruin and rising by leigh bardugo

Ruin and Rising
Leigh Bardugo
3/3 of Grisha
(1.80)
Goodreads

i’ve just realised that i was a total arsehole when i reviewed the two books before this series. it was my opinion but i was still being so harsh.
 
i’m so sorry everyone and to make it up, i will state the positive aspects in this book.
 
oH CRAP DID I FAIL
 
oops.
 
okay, okay, okay. sorry. i’m sorry, alright? if i could think of one positive thing about this book, it was easy to get in to.
 
there. happy?
 
if you want to know what i think of this book, just look at my other reviews. i feel the same thing, although, i’ll add some:
 
why do all guys in YA need to have tattoos? it’s ridiculous. i don’t have anything against tattoos but DAANG. there are loads of guys in YA that have tattoos. warner from shatter me (link of book review), the guy in this book and … a lot more, i expect!
 
i also realised that YA always have “gangs”. they have a whole pact of teenagers who are powerful – but not as powerful as the main protagonist because they are the chosen one duh – and they all have lovers. i’m not bluffing, ALL OF THEM END UP DATING ONE ANOTHER. WTF? can’t someone just decide and say “i want to be single” or “i want to be a nun/priest” or “i don’t want to date anyone in this group”. none. nada. THEY ALL END UP BEING TOGETHER.
 
what the actual f?
 
no, you also failed ruin and rising. your whole ya trilogy (WHY ARE YA BOOKS ALWAYS IN A TRILOGY) and your alliteration titles! no, no! you have failed me, young one. FAILED.
 
*coughs* just don’t read this book, series whatever. if you love this , i’m so sorry that i bashed your beloved series but please understand that this is my opinion. but if you agree with me, thank goodness.

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odelia reviews: siege and storm by leigh bardugo

Siege and Storm
Leigh Bardugo
2/3 of Grisha
(1.67)
Goodreads

this is a part of another typical, predictable, lacks world building, has cliche romance and unrealistic characters, YA series called the Grisha Trilogy. as per usual, i hated this book and i am ready to give it a negative review.
 
i am a fantasy reader and i love it when a book introduces cool, fantasy creatures – like a hobbit or this certain type of elves/faeries OR GOLEMS (link of golem and the jinni). at the start of this book, we are introduced to a SEA DRAGON.
 
yes, everyone. a sea dragon. A SEA DRAGON. THERE’S A SEA DRAGON FOR GOODNESS’S SAKE THAT’S SO EXCITING 
 
but the author still manages to screw it all up and i read the sea dragon part with this expression.
 
 
arghhhhhhhhhhhhh. i was so pissed off that i wasn’t excited. how the hell couldn’t that be exciting? well, it wasn’t. i felt like i was back at school and i was learning how to graph linear equations.
 
i’ve seen people review this book and say the writing style is the best feature. that’s like saying the best feature in the earth is global warming or pollution, IT IS NOT THE BEST FEATURE, IT’S ONE OF THE WORST. 
 
i’m not saying i’m a better writer or i could write better. i’m simply stating my opinion of the writing.
 
like really? compare this writing:
 
“I didn’t know what to say to Mal. I never did these days. But maybe I could just start with the truth: that I was lost and confused, and maybe losing my mind, that I scared myself sometimes, and that I missed him so much it was like physical pain.”
 
 
“All of us are lonely at some point or another, no matter how many people surround us. And then, we meet someone who seems to understand. She smiles, and for a moment the loneliness disappears. Add to that the effects of physical desire-and the excitement you spoke of-and all good sense and judgement fall away. The Rabbi paused, then said, But love founded only on loneliness and desire will die out before long. A shared history, tradition and values will link two people more thoroughly than any physical act.”
 
 
in my opinion, the Golem and the Jinni wins. (as usual)
 
i just can’t see what people like about this book. what? you like the characters? they’re so hot, swoon worthy? ugh. yeah, because that’s such an important trait in which everyone should have. you like the world? what world? i have more cats that this book has world building. this book gives you feels? well, that’s great. “feels” is actually part of the Qualities of a Masterpiece. it’s called “Suggestiveness”. but there’s a reason why there are seven qualities, not just “feels”. yeah, feels are nice to have but that can’t be why you would give a book five stars.
 
i’m not judging you, if you ever like this book. i just can’t seem to understand the love and hype this book gets. it’s frustrating as hell and it pisses me off.
no, Siege and Storm. i did not like you. go away now.

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