Tag Archives: markus zusak

The Book Chat {Vol 6}

Standard

Linking up over at Sweet Green Tangerine for The Book Chat!

Today’s question: Let’s talk about endings…. Sad/Happy/Cliffhangers/Quotes

I’ve been really excited to answer this question because, let’s face it, who doesn’t have a favorite ending, or an ending that literally left your jaw hanging open and had you thinking about it for 2 straight weeks? Because I have.

Here are a few of my all-time favorites:

Favorite ending to a series

1. The Death Cure by James Dashner 
I was SO happy with the way he ended his trilogy. It made all three books even BETTER!

2. Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows
As much as I was disappointed in JK Rowling for a long time for “selling out” I don’t think I could have handled a NON happy ending. I needed her to end the series off the way she did.

Favorite ending in contemporary fiction

1.Looking for Alaska by John Green 
This book has one of the most memorable endings for me- in fact, I don’t remember how any of his other books end except this one. I like that the end is hopeful, beautiful, and doesn’t give anything away about the rest of the book. It’s just so freaking perfect!

2. I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak
Another all time favorite of mine; although I don’t remember the exact details I know that I loved the way this story wrapped up. Heck, this entire book was amazing!

Favorite cliffhanger(s)

Can I make a list? I’m going to make a list.
1. Cinder by Marissa Meyer
2. Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
3. Wither by Lauren DeStefano
4. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
5. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness 

All of the above make me want to read the next in the series RIGHT THIS MINUTE. I felt the same way about Catching Fire, so let’s hope the next book in all the other series don’t disappoint as much as Mockingjay did. Also, number five on this list surprised even me because it took me a LONG time to enjoy that book. The ending was worth the whole thing though, I want to pick up book two soon!

—–

Overall, I think it’s really difficult for author’s to end a book off the RIGHT way. When they get it right, I’m always ecstatic, and it makes me love their book a LOT more. I am not easily impressed with endings– I am actually very judgmental of them, and had to go through my entire Goodreads to get this list. I know there are a BUNCH more books I really enjoyed the endings to, but these are some that have really stood out for me in the last couple years, although most of these were much more recent.

I think especially when it comes to writing a series, an author has to know exactly what kind of cliffhanger is GOOD and what kind is NOT. There has to be a balance between details in one book and in the next, and the books should be easily distinguishable one from the other. I hate when a book ends REALLY well only to get extremely disappointed by the next one in a series. Likewise, I hate enjoying a book the whole way through and being upset by the very end. One particular author that I loved for a long time was Dean Koontz, but I quickly began to realize that he ruined all his greatest novels because of his crap endings (sorry Dean, it’s the truth! The Husband? Remember that one? Disappointing.)

What are some of your favorite and least favorite book endings? 

Advertisements

Another post on books

Standard

My taste in books ranges over just about every topic. I mean, there are a few exceptions but in general I’m willing to give any author a chance. Most of my current favorite writers are actually because a friend (or a customer at work) recommended a book to me. If you’re not an avid reader and you don’t know where to start, don’t be shy to take someone’s advice. If they feel strongly enough about a book, you may fall in love with it too. And if you are an avid reader, then still take recommendations! Like I said, some of my favorites were not my own discovery whatsoever.

I thought I might talk a little bit about my top 5 favorite YA authors (which I’ve probably rambled on about already) and in another post I’ll write about my top 5 favorite adult authors. Sometimes I fall even more in love with a particular writer after reading up about him or her. Putting a face and a whole life to a name makes a world of a difference sometimes. Anyway, it was hard enough to narrow this down, so I strongly recommend you give them all a look-up if you aren’t already a fan!

Top 5 YA authors

1. Markus Zusak

 Books:

1. The Book Thief
2. I Am The Messenger
3. The Underdog
4. Fighting Ruben Wolfe (sequel to The Underdog)
5. Getting the Girl (sequel to Fighting Ruben Wolfe)

-I’ve read 1, 2 and 5. I actually had no idea that Getting the Girl was the third in a series and I wasn’t lost or anything, it was just a really sweet coming of age book about love and acceptance.

-My favorites are by far I Am The Messenger & The Book Thief. I think they tie as favorites, because they honestly both changed my life and the way I perceived books in the YA section. They’ve both won numerous awards and I can’t recommend either one enough, regardless of what your reading taste is. Check them out on Goodreads here and here.

-Both of those books are also in my top 10 current favorites. Truly amazing reads, and I can honestly say that I think Markus Zusak is one of the best writers in YA fiction right now. Oh! Also do go follow him on Twitter.

2. J.K Rowling

 Books:

1. The Harry Potter series 1-7
2. Tales of Beedle the Bard
3. Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them
4. Quidditch Through the Ages
5. An 800 word Harry Potter Prequel 

– As if J.K Rowling needs any kind of introduction. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you most certainly know that this amazing woman has dedicated the last 20 years of her life to the series that millions around the world love.

– Her books changed my life, which I wrote about recently here

3. John Green

 Books:

1. Looking for Alaska
2. An Abundance of Katherines
3. Paper Towns
4. Zombicorns (online novella)
5. Let it Snow (co-written with Lauren Myracle & Maureen Johnson)
6. [currently writing] The Fault in our Stars

– You mean you haven’t heard enough about him here and here?

– Everything he writes I want to copy down somewhere to remember another day. I’m constantly favoriting (yes I know that’s not a real word) his quotes on Goodreads & I’ve helped convert so many new fans that it makes me feel really proud, and I can’t tell you why.

– Everything this author does for his fans makes me love his books more. He’s actually going to sign every single pre-ordered copy of his new book. That’s like, hundreds of thousands. How legit is that?

– I’m trying to fill up all the space next to his picture so I’m going to keep rambling. John Green’s books may be one of the reasons that I fell back in love with beautiful literature. I don’t know how else to describe it.

– My favorites are 1, 2, 3 but in no particular order. They’re all awesome!

4. Suzanne Collins

 Books:

1. Gregor the Overlander 1-5 (The Underland Chronicles)
2. The Hunger Games
3. Catching Fire
4. Mockingjay

– Suzanne Collins was the first teen author to renew my love for YA fiction 3 years ago. I used to read it obsessively when I was at the age for it, but then I moved on to adult books when I thought the time was right. Reading The Hunger Games changed the way I perceived teen books again and I was able to discover what an amazing world it can be. A lot of people are super embarrassed when they’re “too old” to be shopping in the younger sections, but it’s honestly AMAZING the books you can find in there.

– Catching Fire is in my top 10 favorite books of all time.

– I cannot WAIT for The Hunger Games movie to come out next year.

– If you haven’t read these yet, I don’t care WHAT you read, you will love this book. I think I’ve met two people who haven’t liked it… Out of probably close to a thousand (not an exaggeration, I’ve been selling the book for 3 straight years)!

5. Ann Brashares

 Books:

1. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (Summer 1-4)
2. The Summer of You and Me
3. My Name is Memory
4. 3 Willows
5. Sisterhood Everlasting

– I’ve blogged about her books recently because I just re-read all four Sisterhood books as well as the brand new one (which I forgot to book review) but I can honestly say that those books changed my life entirely. Re-reading them did NOTHING to change that for me, it only renewed my love for these books even more.

– I did not like (and did not even finish reading) The Summer of You & Me as well as 3 Willows. She’s the only author that I’m allowing in this feature to have books that I didn’t like because I so sincerely love everything else she wrote. I have ‘My Name is Memory’ on my bookshelf now and I’ve heard only good things. Also, her books are not all YA, but I still consider her as a YA author above all.

– I’m going to write a review of Sisterhood Everlasting I think, but that was one of the most beautifully written books I’ve read this year. I cried so much reading it, I can’t even begin to tell you. It was so good.

These authors are probably some of the most famous in their field right now, so I may not be teaching you anything new. In that case, I’d like to just mention a few authors that are slowly making their mark in YA fiction (or that already have but just didn’t make the Top 5 cut) and I can’t wait to see what else they come out with: Veronica Roth, Lauren Oliver, Kenneth Oppel [LOVE him. His new book is on my nightstand right now!], Rick Riordan, James Dashner and Jeff Kinney– who I’m way too old to read (seriously!) but can’t help but enjoy his sense of humor anyway.

I think that just about covers it for now, who are some of your favorite authors? Have I introduced you to anyone new that you’ll be reading? I’d love to know! 

** I say the word honestly way too much. Wow. **

Summer Reading List

Standard

I’ve been reading a LOT of blogs lately about what people are reading and about how people are constantly looking for book recommendations. I’ve been told I have pretty good taste in books so I thought I would:

a)share a list of my top 10 favorites that I’ve read recently (you can look them up and maybe enjoy them as much as me if you haven’t already)

and

b) Write a list of the top 10 books on my shelf that are waiting to be read.

I do read a lot of YA fiction, but I promise I only read the best of the best. My friends that I’ve forced into reading some of my favorites can vouch for me here. Feel free to share any recommendations with me, I am always looking for new books!

Top 10 Current Favorites

1. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare (First book in the Mortal Instruments series)
Type of book: YA fiction, Fantasy, Vampire/Werewolf, Romance.

2. The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (First book in the Percy Jackson & The Olympians series)
Type of book: YA fiction, fantasy, Greek Mythology, humor, GOOD FOR ANY AGE.

3. Room by Emma Donoghue
Type of book: Adult fiction, Real Life, Award Winner, Bestseller

4. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Type of book: Adult fiction, Historical Fiction, Bestseller, Book-turned-movie(coming out in August!)

5. Divergent by Veronica Roth
Type of book: YA fiction, Dystopian, Bestseller, AMAZING, If you liked Hunger Games you’ll ADORE this.

6. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Type of book: YA fiction, Dystopian, Bestseller, Book-turned-movie, If you haven’t read this yet you’re truly missing out!

7. Sarah’s Key by Tatiana De Rosnay
Type of Book: Adult fiction, Historical Fiction, Sad, Emotional, Bestseller, Book-turned-movie (Sometime this summer!)

8. An Abudance of Katherine’s by John Green
Type of Book: YA fiction, Real life stories, Humour, Amazingness, Just read it.

9. Delirium by Lauren Oliver
Type of Book: YA Fiction, Dystopian, If you love Hunger Games/Fantasy YA you’ll love this one.

10. I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak
Type of Book: YA Fiction, Real life stories, Humour, SO GOOD ALSO PLEASE READ THE BOOK THIEF. Thank you.

These are really just the first 10 that come to mind that I’ve read within the last two years, but I’m always up for giving more suggestions if you need!

Top 10 Can’t-Wait-To-Read

1. Sisterhood Everlasting by Ann Brashares
Type of Book: Adult fiction, Continuation of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series (AWW.)

2. Blood Red Road by Moira Young
Type of Book: YA Fiction, Dystopian, Book with lots of buzz, If you like HG/Divergent/Delirium apparently you will love this

3. Talking to Girls About Duran Duran by Rob Sheffield
Type of Book: Biogoraphy, Music

4. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Type of Book: Adult Fiction, Historical Fiction, Bestseller, Why haven’t I read this yet?

5. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
Type  of Book: Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Awesomeness (apparently!)

6. Mystic River by Dennis Lehane
Type of Book: Adult Fiction, Mystery, Recommended by a friend

7. Matched by Ally Condie
Type of Book: YA Fiction, Dystopian, Mixed reviews but mostly good stuff

8. Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult
Type of Book: Adult Fiction, Real life stories, Court cases/Law stuff

9. Little Princes by Conor Grennan
Type of Book: Biography, Around the world, Bestseller, Book with lots of buzz

10. The Cardturner by Louis Sachar
Type of Book: YA Fiction, Real life stories, I basically just love Louis Sachar (Holes? Anyone?)

So those are the top books on my shelves these days!  I’ve got a ton of others that I wanted to share, but maybe I’ll keep them for another post. What are you reading this summer? What have you read that you absolutely loved? Any that were on my list?

Photo courtesy of this awesome post about home libraries. I want!