Lucien21 Books 2014

General discussions about anything and everything related to books and reading.
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Sat Jan 04, 2014 12:18 pm

January

ImageImageImageImage

May

Image
Last edited by Lucien21 on Sat May 17, 2014 4:12 pm, edited 5 times in total.
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Sat Jan 04, 2014 12:21 pm

NOS4A2 - Joe Hill

The book title is the registration number of a vintage Rolls Royce driven by one of the creepiest villians in a novel for a while. Charles Manx is a man of indeterminate age who for decades has been abducting children and taking them to Christmasland, a world of permentant joy and festive cheer.

Victoria McQueen has a special gift for finding things when on her bike and her mind is set on finding it.

This power gets her into big trouble as a child when she crosses paths with Manx and his car.

Years later she is still haunted by the events, but must use her powers again when her son is abducted by Manx.

They say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree and this book is certainly reminicent of Hill's spooky father. In fact It directly references the Dark Tower at one point.

Dark spooky and with some really good charactisation and snappy dialogue. This is well worth the read.(
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
draclvr
Monster-Slaying Administrator
Monster-Slaying Administrator
Posts: 14028
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 6:30 am
Zodiac: Virgo

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby draclvr » Sat Jan 04, 2014 1:26 pm

Oh, definitely on my must-read list! Did you read Joe Hill's Heart Shaped Box? That book had a creepiness factor to rival anything written by his father!
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life gives you tomatoes, make Bloody Marys.
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Sat Jan 04, 2014 1:43 pm

draclvr wrote:Oh, definitely on my must-read list! Did you read Joe Hill's Heart Shaped Box? That book had a creepiness factor to rival anything written by his father!


It was a good first novel, but i think he is getting better.

His graphic novel series Locke & Key is great and he has written what is probably one of my fav short stories ever in Pop Art
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Thu Jan 09, 2014 4:44 pm

Republic of Thieves - Scott Lynch

Round about 2006-ish there started a groundswell of praise for a new author and a fantasy book that everyone was raving about. Lies of Locke Lamora was released in 2007 to instant praise. The first in a proposed 7 book series following the life of Locke Lamora and his crew of Gentleman Bastards, Orphans growing up in the island city of Camorr they learn from a young age to pick pockets and live on the street. He gets taken in by a priest and get trained in the art of the con, Now they are a group of audacious thieves and expert conmen. The first book was a thrilling heist book in the vein of Ocean Eleven, with its whitty banter, twists and turns, betrayal and action it thrilled readers.

The following year Red Seas under Red Skies proved lynch wasn't a one hit wonder. This time the novel has the gang try and rob the most exclusive and heavily guarded gambling house in the world. This one is a bit less Oceans Elven and more "Pirates of the Caribbean" as they try and con themselves into a fortune.

Both books are thrilling rides with well drawn out main characters and snappy dialogue

Unfortunatly after that Scott Lynch suffers bouts of panic attacks and depression that constantly delayed the rest of the series, until now.

Republic of Thieves picks up right from the end of the last novel and dumps our heroes into the fray of another con, this time it'd political. Forced by the Bondmagi to play in one of their games, Locke and Jean are pitted against an old friend and Locke's Long lost love Sabetha to rig a local election by any means necessary.

Like the previous books the story alternates between two time frames. In this one we get the present where they two sides pull silly pranks, bribe officials etc to gather votes for their side, and the past detailing how Locke and Sabetha first met and grew close while pulling a con posing as actors in a play called "The Republic of Thieves".

While it's great to get the insight into the characters with the backstory, it does suffer slightly from the fact that you are getting caught up with one particular storyline and then it shifts, only to get engrossed in that side and it shifts back. The Locke/Sabetha relationship is good read but can get a bit repetitive, and boggs down the middle of the book slightly. The present story is hampered by not really giving any consequences to the election storyline, both parties are ahving great fun trying to outdo each other with the scam, tricks etc. However you don't ever get the impression they care who wins.

Overall though it is a worthy sequel if not quite the thrilling ride the first two were, but a deeper more personal novel. The first two books are stand alone heist stories, this one seems to more about settign the stage for what is coming next while delving into Locke's character. With the next book in the series due this year or early 2015 i'm glad we won't have another 6 years to wait to jump back into these characters.

4.5/5
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
LadyKestrel
Flighty Administrator
Flighty Administrator
Posts: 10371
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2004 1:40 pm
Zodiac: Aries

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby LadyKestrel » Thu Jan 09, 2014 7:44 pm

I'm glad to see your reviews here again, Lucien. You're giving me some new ones to add to my list.
Winter is an etching, spring is a watercolor, summer is an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all. -Stanley Horowitz
User avatar
Kickaha
Ghostmaster General
Ghostmaster General
Posts: 1840
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2006 8:07 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Kickaha » Fri Jan 10, 2014 4:09 pm

Yes thanks Lucien - added to my list of books to try!
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Sat Jan 11, 2014 5:21 am

Killing Floor (Jack Reacher #1) - Lee Child

Didn't know much about this series, other than my mum is a big fan. Was rewatching the Tom Cruise movie about the Reacher character and decided to give it a shot.

So this is the first book in the Jack Reatcher series and first impressions are not phenomenal.

It seems on the outset to be a cliche ridden pulp novel, First Blood meets the Incredible Hulk TV show.

Jack Reacher is an ex Army cop who has decided to become a hobo (not the littlest but there is a resemblance)by wandering the USA on foot.

He walks into a small town in Georgia and is virtually immedietly arrested for murder. Of course by the end of the book (through some amazing coincidences) he has been drawn into uncovering a conspiracy of corruption and crime, killed a bunch of people, slept with the best looking woman in the area, solved a 20 year old murder and headed on his way to the next town.

It must be an American thing, but the roving vigilante storyline was a staple of 80's US TV (A-Team, Kung Fu, Littlest Hobo, Hulk, Knight Rider, Pretender, etc) Consider this the book version.

It wasn't all bad the book is a quick read, a reasonable exciting rollercoaster of a ride and occassionaly hints at better.

Just switch off brain and ignore the many coincidences and cliches.

2.5/5
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
draclvr
Monster-Slaying Administrator
Monster-Slaying Administrator
Posts: 14028
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 6:30 am
Zodiac: Virgo

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby draclvr » Sat Jan 11, 2014 9:38 am

If you stick with the series, you might grow to like Jack Reacher. The cliches will continue, but the books are always a good ride. My husband and I have read them all.
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life gives you tomatoes, make Bloody Marys.
User avatar
Diat60
Poltergeist
Poltergeist
Posts: 2417
Joined: Wed Oct 03, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Diat60 » Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:34 pm

"He said nothing". Will be repeated many many times in all the books. I've bought half a dozen or so of Jack Reacher books over the past couple of years and generally find them an easy read. The suspense is not in knowing he's in a jam, but how the heck he's going to get out of this one! BTW, after reading the physical description of Reacher, what did you think of casting Tom Cruise to play him?
User avatar
draclvr
Monster-Slaying Administrator
Monster-Slaying Administrator
Posts: 14028
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 6:30 am
Zodiac: Virgo

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby draclvr » Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:50 pm

Agreed 100%, Diat. No literary achievement, but a good ride in any case.

Personally, I was horrified to see Tom Cruise in the role! I almost didn't watch the movie because of it. After watching it, he is no Jack Reacher and I doubt I would watch another one if he is cast in the role again.
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life gives you tomatoes, make Bloody Marys.
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Sun Jan 12, 2014 5:59 am

I remember my mum saying she never wanted to watch the movie because Tom Cruise just wasn't Reacher in her mind.

Certainly he's waaaaaaay shorter than 6ft 5 and doesn't have the imposing figure that I image him in the book. I watched the movie before I read any of the books so I can write it off as just an action movie.

They are futzing about with the series anyway because the movie is based on "One Shot" which is book 9 and the proposed sequel is based on "Never Go Back" which is book 18.
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Tue Jan 14, 2014 3:15 pm

Die Trying (Jack Reacher #2) - Lee Child

This time Reacher is accidently kidnapped along with a beautiful FBI agent, presumed to be involved by the FBI, Reacher is now their most wanted fugitive. Trapped in the back of a truck as it travels cross country to it's final destination deep in the Montana mountains. Jack has to use all his restraint and training to keep both of them alive and escape the growing political and criminal fall out.

I was thrown by the change in viewpoint in this book which inexplicably switches from 1st to 3rd person. However the story moves at a decent pace, it's action packed and there was enough there to keep reading.

Still too many coincidences and cliches from my liking and I kept wondering why none of these idiots wouldn't see a 6'5 guy as a threat to their plan and kill him when they had the chance. It's the old Bond problem of why Blofeld puts him in death devices instead of just putting a bullet in his head. The bad guys in this book are a bunch of morons.

It's undeniably a page turner, but the series is still not knocking my socks off. Maybe it will become a guilty pleasure like watch a Segal movie.

2/5
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
Lucien21
Settled Spook
Settled Spook
Posts: 968
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 11:47 am
Zodiac: Cancer

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby Lucien21 » Sat May 17, 2014 4:31 pm

The Martian

Saw a lot of buzz around this novel and it's just been announced as a Ridley Scott movie starring Matt Damon.

Mark Watney is an Engineer and Botanist who is part of a six person mission to Mars. They are the third mission so are not set to hit headlines etc. However a major dust storm hits their site and NASA orders the mission to be scrubbed. In the desperate scramble to evacuate the planet. Mark is speared by a flying antenna and the crew assume he is dead and launch their MAV into orbit and head back to Earth.

Mark is quickly famous as the first human to die on another planet. Fortunatly for him or not he isn't dead and is now stranded on Mars. It's 4 years before the next mission is due to land, nobody knows he is alive and he doesn't have enough food or air to survive that lenght of stay.

He now has to survive with his engineering skills and his wits.

The story is told in a diary like fashion and is pretty techy at times as he discussed how to farm in a martian environment, how to convert water into air and fuel etc etc. However there is enough humour in his postings and even the techy stuff is fascinating I got caught up in his struggle for survival.

The book set out a very solitary feel to it for quite a while, which is appropriate to the events, before slowly introducing other characters that get involved in his rescue attempt.

I enjoyed the book and look forward to the movie, but i'm not sure what would be more scary...being trapped alone on Mars or the only entertainment left behind was the mission commanders insane love for 70's disco music.

4/5
Being human totally sucks most of the time.
Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.
—Anorak’s Almanac, Chapter 91, Verses 1–2
User avatar
LadyKestrel
Flighty Administrator
Flighty Administrator
Posts: 10371
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2004 1:40 pm
Zodiac: Aries

Re: Lucien21 Books 2014

Postby LadyKestrel » Sat May 17, 2014 5:45 pm

This sounds like one I would like, Lucien.
Winter is an etching, spring is a watercolor, summer is an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all. -Stanley Horowitz

Return to “Book Discussions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest