Review: Lucy in the Sky – Anonymous

Lucy in the SkyTitle: Lucy in the Sky
Author:
 Anonymous
Publication Date: 1 May 2012
ISBN: 1442451858
Pages: 288
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Format: Softcover
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

The author of this diary began journaling on her sixteenth birthday. She lived in an upper middle class neighborhood in Santa Monica with her mom, dad, and Berkeley-bound older brother. She was a good girl, living a good life…but one party changed everything. One party, where she took one taste—and liked it. Really liked it.
Social drinking and drugging lead to more, faster, harder… She convinced herself that she was no different from anyone else who liked to party. But the evidence indicates otherwise: Soon she was she hanging out with an edgy crowd, blowing off school and everything she used to care about, all to find her next high.
But what goes up must come down, and everything—from her first swig, to her last breath—is chronicled in the diary she left behind.

Review

I have a feeling that this is going to be a very short review. So let’s get into it.

I had a lot of really mixed feelings about this book.

I really loved the way that the author delved deep into the experience of doing drugs. It was intense to be in a mindset that was even a little bit similar to being high or doing cocaine. As someone who’s never been high, it felt very real and very much like anecdotes from other people.

Because of these descriptions, it was a lot easier to understand why the story progressed the way she did. It’s easy to see how taking one drug can quickly lead to needing to do and take every other drug on the planet. It was a mentally invigorating (stimulating?) journey from beginning to end.

Continue reading “Review: Lucy in the Sky – Anonymous”

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Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts One and Two (Harry Potter, #8)Title: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts One and Two, Harry Potter #8
Author:
 J.K. Rowling,  John Tiffany, Jack Thorne
Publication Date: 31 July 2016
ISBN: 0751565350
Pages: 343
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Hardcover
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

Review

So I borrowed this book from my friend Cindy at Stranger Things Have Happened and she had some really great advice for me which I’m going to share with you. Read this novel with the mindset that it’s fan fiction.

I must say, I’m extremely glad that she told me that. If I had gone into this thinking that it was meant to be a literal extension of the end of the Harry Potter series, I don’t think I would have liked it nearly as much. However, because I recognized the fact that it was like fan fiction and the passsage of a large chunk of time, I really enjoyed this novel.

Continue reading “Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling”

Review: The Plague

15708Title: The Plague
Author: Albert Camus, Translator: Robin Buss
Publication Date: 1947
ISBN: 0141185139
Pages: 238
Genre: Absurdist Fiction, Philosophical Fiction
Format: Paperback
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

 

The townspeople of Oran are in the grip of a deadly plague, which condemns its victims to a swift and horrifying death. Fear, isolation and claustrophobia follow as they are forced into quarantine. Each person responds in their own way to the lethal disease: some resign themselves to fate, some seek blame and revenge, and a few, like the unheroic hero Dr Rieux, join forces to resist the terror. In part an allegory of France’s suffering under the Nazi occupation, The Plague is a compelling depiction of bravery and determination pitted against the precariousness of human existence.

My thoughts

This was a school assigned book and we just finished the unit on Friday. I have to say that my teacher, Mr. Johnson, perfectly described it as being “eight pages of plot.” This novel more focuses on existentialist philosophy, more specifically absurdism. Absurdism is the idea that humanity’s efforts to find inherent meaning will fail and are thus unnecessary or absurd. Basically, there is no reason for why things happen.  This central idea is seen especially clearly during the conversations and interactions among Dr. Rieux, Tarrou, and Father Paneloux. Towards the end of the novel this idea is heavily investigated as the plague seems to leave the town of Oran.

I really liked how the plague itself wasn’t the focus of the novel and was instead a vessel to explain an idea. However, the lack of an identifiable narrator (we don’t find out until the end) was frustrating sometimes. It made connecting and identifying with other characters extremely difficult and while this may have been the intent, I prefer books in which I can feel something for another character. I also found myself slightly bored throughout the novel, mainly because of the writing style. The beginning was very slow and the number of dates in the beginning was annoying to keep up with even though they served no purpose.

Overall, I found the book to be pretty good. It’s not the greatest piece of literature I’ve ever read but for something that was meant to explore a philosophical idea, Camus did a really good job. I wouldn’t recommend this book to a lot of people and it is most certainly not for people who are expecting plot or anything exceptionally gory. If you’re looking for a book that explores existentialist ideas, then this is most certainly the book for you.

Rating
3.5 star