Showing posts with label book reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label book reviews. Show all posts

Thursday, April 4, 2019

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Blitzball - The Book Lots of Influencers are Talking About

A lot of Influencers are posting about Blitzball by Barton Ludwig. In Blitzball, Addie, a teen cloned to be Hitler, battles his genetics and the Nazis who created him at a school where soccer is war.

Here are what some influencers are saying: 

Blitzball has been quite well received on social media as it's an enjoyable book but one that also takes a strong stand against racism. What I enjoyed most about this book was that it felt like something different. I love dystopian stories but this was not your typical dystopian. Although it deals with such a dark theme and for the most part, it is a drama, it was mixed with a lot of comedy as well. If I had to compare it to a book, it would probably be something like Horrorstory or My Best Friends Exorcism, two very popular books. I'm surprised that not more people know about this book.

I'm a big fan of dark comedy and shows like "Maniac" I really gravitate towards. Blitzball had a lot of the dark comedy you'd expect with such a theme but it did it in a tasteful way. However, this is a story set in high school so be prepared to encounter the type of Seth Rogan and Judd Apetow humor we've come to love and expect. However, for me no amount of laughs can justify a character I don't connect with. I thought I'd have a hard time connecting to Addie but I didn't because I felt like he was a victim too as he didn't ask to be cloned to be Hitler. It happened to him and then it was something he had to deal with. The reason I connected to him so well I think is because he wants to break free of the chains that his society has imposed on him and I think a lot of teens can relate to this as well.

One of the best things about this story for me was that it really fits with the current political situation in America right now and the rise in tensions among different ethnic groups. North Prep, the rival school of Addie's school, Reichfield, is filled with minorities, namely Mexicans. How appropriate for the political situation, right?

I feel with a lot of things, I'm an early adopter, meaning I often discover things first, like snapchat. I feel that this book is something that could really take off. For books of 2019, Blitzball has to be one of my favorites followed by The Dreamers. Blitzball is available on Amazon here: http:/

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Sunday, September 25, 2016

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The Woman on the Orient Express, Lindsay Jayne Ashford (Review)

The Woman on the Orient Express by Lindsay Jayne Ashford

Set in 1928, this novel follows the adventures of the famous Agatha Christie as she tries to escape from herself and the London society. She decides to travel on the Orient Express all the way to Baghdad to get rid of her thoughts about her recent divorce from Archibald Christie. The beginning of the book revolves around her nervous breakdown and the impact it had on the public press given that her disappearance and temporary memory loss after having learned that her husband was cheating on her and wanted a divorce were considered somewhat of an embarrassment.

On the one hand, Agatha needs a break because gossiping was quite common at the time, especially in London’s high society. On the other hand, the author knows that she will have the chance to discover new things that will probably be interesting enough to be included in one of her next novels. While on the train, the mastermind meets two ladies, and both have interesting stories to tell. Nancy Nelson is an unhappily married woman who wants to escape her husband but has little to no prospects in Baghdad. She hardly knows how she will be able to survive in an unknown environment, where there doesn’t seem to be anything expecting her. Katharine Woolley is a unique character that I very much enjoyed, especially as she is strong, willful, and rather masculine, to a certain extent. Katharine shares the same room with Agatha, which is why the two women manage to strike up a friendship. Agatha, traveling by the name of Mary Miller, has no idea that these two ladies have secrets of their own, which she will discover later on.

The book is focused both on the Orient Express journey and the events that occur when the three women eventually reach Baghdad. A good portion of the novel is set in Ur, where various archeological diggings are being performed. People who read Christie’s autobiography might be bothered by certain inadvertencies such as the fact that, in reality, the author doesn’t meet Max Mallowan, her second husband, until much later, when she undertakes her second trip to Mesopotamia.

Personal thoughts

I swear that this book was crafted perfectly. Of course, it all depends on one’s literary taste, but for me, it was just the right choice at the right time, particularly as I am currently traveling through Britain and for the time being, the English accent is the only one I can hear around me. Obviously, I am fascinated by Agatha Christie and have read more than forty pieces of her work, including her 700-something-page autobiography (twice!). I do admit that there are several historical liberties that the author had to take in order to make the book more attractive, but I honestly wasn’t bothered by any. Another reason I warmly recommend the novel is that it manages to be character-driven in spite of the fact that there are actually three characters that all work together in defining and sketching the personal life of Agatha Christie. Besides, I feel obliged to be honest and say that I was overwhelmed by a fuzzy, comfortable feeling while reading The Woman on the Orient Express and after having heard the author’s voice in a BBC interview, it was like the lady herself was speaking to me, at times.

As for the writing style, in all truthfulness, I have nothing bad to say about it. I thought that this novel would be a bit cheesy or too romantic for my taste, but it turned out to be a pleasurable read. It wasn’t overwritten in the least and it seems to me like Lindsay Jayne Ashford invested a lot of time in research.

I have to thank NetGalley and the publisher for offering me an electronic copy of this book to review. It’s one of the best novels I had the chance of reading this year, which only makes me happy.

Click here to see what other people had to say about this book!

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