Monday, 4 November 2013

The City of Bones - by Cassandra Clare

A book that I love is 'The Mortal Instruments: The City of Bones written by Cassandra Clare this book is the first book in a very popular series and has always stood out to me for many reasons. One the amazing characters, two the story and three the stormy night when I first came across it. I was at my sister's friend's house for a sort of family friends get together thing, I was thoroughly bored and had being my very sociable self had no interest in speaking to anyone. I picked up the book sitting on her bedside table, the cover intriguing me; an image of a young male with 'markings' covering his body and beams of light coming from his body. The book also had a review from Stephanie Meyer on the inside which interested me.

I began to read it and I had read about four chapters of the book and was really enjoying learning about the supernatural world, Clary Fray had stumbled upon. All of a sudden the lights flashed really bright and the power cut, no electricity, no light, no reading. But I struggled on, reading using the light of my phone but in the end I reluctantly put the book down to gave my straining eyes a break and joined in with everyone else.

After all that happened that night the book was far from my mind until two or three weeks later when my sister's friend had finished with the book and was getting rid of it. She had read the book and didn't enjoy it but when I remembered it I gleefully took it from her and began to read. I finished the book within the day. I discovered there was a second and third book written and there was rumours of there being a fourth book nothing had been confirmed at that point. I squealed with delight, thrilled I did not have to say goodbye to the characters already. Immediately went and bought them. The anticipation too much to bear.

Three years later, another four books written on the world of shadowhunters and demons (totalling 7!!), a movie coming out later this year, another book out later this month (!!), I have lent and recommended this book countless times and it is without a doubt my favourite book. I have returned numerous times to this book only to be enthralled each and every time by the shadowhunters in their constant quest to defeat evil and protect the mundanes but each time I do return, I remember that very eventful stormy night when I first came across it.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Un Lun Dun by China Mieville

I was given this book by an old  friend who liked it and thought I would enjoy it too. I really liked it and have read it at least four times. It is about UnLondon, an alternate realm where all the discarded items of London go. Two girls from London, Zanna and Deeba  stumble upon this world and find out Zanna is part of a prophecy to save Unlondon from the Smog `, a cloud of chemical gases trying to burn Unlondon to feed himself . Zanna gets injured and has to be brought back to London and has her memory wiped but Deeba remembers and goes back to try help her new friends save Unlondon from the Smog.This book has really interesting characters. The author makes  characters out of inanimate objects like Curdle the milk carton and gives them a real personality that makes you think they are human. This book made me want to become a costume designer because of the description of one of the characters, Obaday Fing, a tailor who makes clothes out of book pages and has a pin cushion for a head.The book is black and cream and has very lovely illustrations by the author on the cover and in the book.

Succumbing to Keats

Any time I’m asked a question involving one book, I instantly feel that cloying indecisiveness that is my love for a seemingly endless list of books. So being asked to write a blog post about the one book I would bring to a desert island is torment! After much deliberation between The Golden Treasury left to me recently by my grandmother, and a tatty volume of Keats, I’ve decided to go with Keats, as I’ve fallen totally in love with its decrepit charm.
The book came to me last year. Imagine the bustling streets of the town of Gorey, in Wexford, where I sometimes go to shop with my family. There’s a small café there, called “The Book Café”, if  I’m remembering that right, with the kind of atmosphere that makes me want to play chess (though I’m awful) and drink hot chocolate. Go through to the back of the café and you’ll find shelves and shelves of second hand books. In short, a reader’s heaven! It was here that I found a bookcase devoted to poetry, and hiding unassumingly between some larger, sterner looking volumes was my Keats volume, and I say ‘my’ with great pride and satisfaction.
By then, the book had seen its fair share of wear and tear, the pages are browned and the denim-y cover is a little stringy along the spine, but, to me, that’s all part of the charm. It cost five euro, which I’m mentioning because it adds to my happiness around having snatched it up. I must now have read “Ode To A Nightingale” a thousand times, so I’ll close by quoting my favourite lines:
“O, for a beaker full of the warm South,
Full of the true, the blushful Hippocrene,
With beaded bubbles winking at the brim,
And purple-stained mouth.
That I might drink and leave the world unseen,
And with thee fade away into the forest dim.”
ull of the *true, the blushful Hippocrene