Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Book Review 7: "Warriors" series by Erin Hunter

The Warriors book series is written by Erin Hunter, which is actually a pseudonym used by six different authors. The series follows the lives of four cat clans. The cat clans include Thundeclan, Shadowclan, Riverclan and Windclan.

The first Warriors book (Into The Wild) starts off with Rusty, a beautiful ginger "kittypet" (housecat) who decides to leave his warm comfortable home to become a "warrior" (feral cat). Once he meets the rest of the warrior cats, adventure ensues.

When I told my husband about these books, he asked me if the cats fought with swords and weapons. Although the cats in the book(s) have been personified, they behave like regular cats. They are often described bathing, purring, growling, and hissing just like any other cat.

The terminology in the book can be quite amusing. They use words like "kittypet" to describe a housecat, "thunderpath" to describe the main road, and "monster" to describe the cars that drive through the "thunderpath."

Though these are children's books, don't be mistaken; they are not for the faint of heart. Due to the nature of feral cat colonies, these books are true to their behaviours and the cats can be very violent. The violence often leads to graphic and untimely deaths of some of the characters in the book. I shed a few tears for some of the cats who died.

The books were overall enjoyable, and I read most of book 6 (The Darkest Hour) in one sitting. It was really hard to put down and I wanted to see how the story played out. However, the story has way too many characters to follow. Since the cat's names are so unique, it can get very confusing at times, and it's hard to remember which cat belongs to which clan, or which kits (kittens) belong to which queen (mother). Furthermore, the cats' names change as they get higher up in the warrior hierarchy. For example, "Rusty" the kittypet becomes "Firepaw" the warrior, and he proceeds to become "Fireheart" and then "Firestar" as the story moves along. Another thing I didn't like about the series was that it ended really abruptly.

About 3/4 way into The Darkest Hour, the book takes an unexpected turn, which is why my eyes were glued to the book. The story doesn't end the way you'd think.

Despite it's downfalls, I would still recommend this series to anyone who loves cats and adventure. They are full of love, cuteness, betrayal and honour. If you are not a cat person, you can also try Erin Hunter's other book series' Seekers (which is about bears) or Survivors (which is about dogs.)

Please Note: The series I read is only the first series of Warriors books. They are followed by three more Warriors series', each consisting of six books.

Happy Reading! =)

Some of the many Warriors books. There are also standalone Warriors books, mangas and Warriors guides.

Firepaw is the protagonist in the series and definitely my favourire character. Graypaw is his best friend in the story and they have the cutest kitty bromance ever.
Quoted from book 2 (Forest of Secrets).

My own kittypets striking their Warrior pose! =)

Saturday, 15 November 2014

From Twilight Fan Fiction to Fifty Shades of Shame

I am getting really tired of my twitter feed and youtube homepage throwing "50 Shades of Grey" in my face. I am extremely disgusted by this book/movie phenomenon. I have not read these books, nor do I have any interest in even coming within a mile of any of them. I don't understand why or how they suddenly became so popular. As far as I understand, it is a story about a young girl named Anastasia, an older man named Christian Grey, and a whole lot of pornographic content.

There have been many book/movie fandoms in the past decade or so which included Twilight, Divergent, and Hunger Games to name the few known ones. Although I have not read The Divergent or the Hunger Games series, I can understand their appeal. I, myself, am not interested in reading them because it's not a genre I normally read. I keep hearing mixed reviews about both series, and a few people have told me that the ending(s) to both books are disappointing. If I'm going to invest my time reading 3-4 books, then it better be worth it in the end.

I will admit, I did read the Twilight series (out of curiosity). I thought the series was overrated and I didn't enjoy them as much as I expected. First of all, the writing style was not for me. And second, I wanted Bella to marry Jacob, but she ended up marrying Edward instead. This conclusion to the Twilight saga was disappointing. I thought Bella made a bad life decision when she decided to become a vampire and leave her potential future behind. She was a really bad female role model. As if this wasn't bad enough, Twilight spawned Twilight fan fiction, which somehow became the book series "50 Shades of Grey" by E.L. James. The protagonist in this book was/is a far worse female role model than Bella Swan.

I don't understand why women are reading this "50 Shades of Grey" book series. I have read an excerpt or two and they are terribly written. More importantly, these books are doing nothing but glorifying a sexually abusive relationship, making women everywhere think that Christian Grey is the "man of their dreams." There is nothing romantic about this relationship, and Anastasia should not be seen as a good female role model. As an avid reader, I know these characters are fictional, but we really do end up getting attached to them. Sometimes it happens without us even realizing it. That's why I strongly encourage women everywhere to read books about female characters who are headstrong and know how to kick a little butt! Please do yourself a favour and choose class over trash.

New Books!

My online book order has arrived! They came a lot faster than I had anticipated. I placed my order last Friday, and they arrived yesterday (Friday); in exactly a week. I was under the impression that online orders take 3-6 weeks to reach their destination, so I was pleasantly surprised!

Here are the three new books I added to my home library collection.

The Enchanter Heir (book 4 from the Heir Chronicles), The Sorcerer Heir (book 5 from the Heir Chronicles), and Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows (book 7 from the Harry Potter series.)

My parents bought me the first 6 Harry Potter books many years ago, before the 7th and final book was released, but I never got around to buying book 7 until now. My Harry Potter series is finally complete! Although I've read these books before, I will definitely re-read them again one day. Now that Bloomsbury came out with these new covers, my Harry Potter book covers are all mismatched. But I still think it gives them character and I absolutely love all seven of them!

The Enchanter Heir and The Sorcerer Heir are the last two books in the Heir Chronicles series by Cinda Williams Chima. The First book by Chima I ever read was The Wizard Heir, which is actually book two in the Heir Chronicles, and then I proceeded to read The Warrior Heir (which is book one!) All was well though, because The Warrior Heir and The Wizard Heir are actually companion novels that follow completely different characters. The main characters and storylines from each of these books don't come together until The Dragon Heir (book 3.)

I don't have any of Cinda William Chima's other books, so now that my Harry Potter series is complete, my Heir Chronicles series is not! My next mission is to add The Warrior Heir, The Wizard Heir and The Dragon Heir to my book collection! I also want to buy The Seven Realms series, also by Cinda Williams Chima because I think her books are all brilliant, and love both series'!

Happy Reading! =)

Monday, 10 November 2014

Buying Books

Most of us readers know the struggle of buying books and never getting around to reading them because we keep borrowing books from the library and neglecting the books we own. OR, we buy more new books which just keep adding to our TBR pile. One of my good friends came up with a good solution for this dilemma: Alternate between reading a library book and an owned book. I just started doing this recently, and it seems as though my owned books are slowly making their way down my "books I've read" list. I bought the Chronicles of Narnia series a few years ago but never completed it. I just finished reading Prince Caspian last week, now I have three more Narnia books to go until I finish the series!

As if owning 20 unread books wasn't bad enough, I just bought a few new books last week! My friend (the same one who suggested the alternate reading pattern) sent me a Chapters Gift Card for my Birthday a couple of weeks ago, which I used to make an online purchase. My books should come any day now. I won't reveal what books I bought until they arrive in the mail.

Normally, I like buying used books for two reasons: brand new books can be expensive. If you are patient and look really hard, you can find used books at thrift shops and/or libraries for really good prices. The second reason is because I often buy them from libraries. I know libraries normally do book sale fundraisers to help with the cost of the library, and I absolutely love supporting my local libraries.

What kind of books do you usually buy? Do you buy brand new book, or used books? Do you prefer paperbacks, hardcovers, or e-books? Please share in the comments section below.

Happy Reading! =)