George, the protagonist, is adjusting to life on his own after the sudden death of his partner, determined to persist in the routines of his daily life. An Englishman and a professor living in suburban Southern California, he is an outsider in every way, and his internal reflections and interactions with others reveal a man who loves being alive despite everyday injustices and loneliness. Wry, suddenly manic, constantly funny, surprisingly sad, this novel catches the true textures of life itself.
A small meal but a full meal. An array of flavors but all cohesive and satisfactory circular. A firm patty, tough yet tender, buttery crumb. Pickles and mayo. Hand whisked, hand sliced, hand salted. Right after your carnivorous heart. Splash o’ intoxicant. Beauty and insecurity. Quite devastating in the end but only for the question, what if, what if there was more? All the more gustatory pleasures, that mouthfeel of balanced richness and common ground, those swirls dispersed in between that spoke of faraway things here contained. (Almost like (dark)chocolate in a burger.) Oh just what if! But that meal, it was there. Are you ravished or are you famished?
What do you think?
Eileen is the debutante novel by Ottessa Moshfegh, about the titular character Eileen, an outsider, a lonesome woman in the 1960’s living in a gloomy town in New England, a self-obsessed woman working as a secretary in a young boy’s juvenile correctional facility. The book follows Eileen a week before a looming life-altering incident through Eileen’s thoughts, her obsessions, behavior, her routine, and her relationship with her old alcoholic father, her fantasies regarding a handsome guard at work and towards the end, her obsession and friendship with the new and beautiful Rebecca, also from work.
I got this book from Netgalley after I saw some super positive reviews on it. It was only after I had finished the book that I realized that this was the book that had caused such an uproar on goodreads because of the “fat girl” blurb.
Let me clear something up. I do not know what it’s like to be bullied because of being fat, but my sister is fat and I see how much she has to go through. People keep telling her to be “like me” and that’s such bullshit because I eat like a pregnant woman. I just happen to have a fairly quick metabolism.
I came across this series on Netgalley and immediately downloaded it because I had been craving dragons for a long time now. I mean who doesn’t like dragons? HOW can you not like dragons?? They are fierce and scary and humongous and ADORABLE!
And if they breathe fire then that’s a bonus!
Eileen was a great read. It was dark and isolating and a detailed portrait of a person but also a reflection. It was like a battle of the self, the anatomy of basic human feelings and thought processes with a dash of poisonous habits. It was brilliant.
The thing about jellyfish was a delight. It was little smiles and a warm heart and good wishes. It was the sweetest and it touched me and I’ll forever yell I loved that book from the rooftops. It also had the most beautiful science that reminded me of my love of science and made me sad that science is usually made boring and dry and theoretical and unloved.
Publication Date: October 26, 2016
Targeted Audience: Young Adult/Adult
Genre: Sci-fi – Steampunk/Fantasy
This book has been one of my best October reads. I haven’t read a lot of steampunk (something that I hope to change) and reading this has convinced me to read more of it soon.
The book is set in a Victorian era, steampunk, London and begins with a scientist (known as Professor) conducting an experiment that goes real bad, real fast and before you know it, super enhanced human beings known as Espers start popping up. An institute is set up where people with such cool powers are taught to use it for good but naturally we have some villainous peeps with villainous intentions trying to burn the world down. Cue, Nathan and James, Espers from the institute who are later joined by Freya, who wants to save her brother, an Esper, from the evil Baron.
Alice isn’t Dead (AID) is an amazing podcast that was made by Joseph Fink, one of the creators of Welcome to Nightvale. We can confirm that this is now one of our favourite podcasts (including Nightvale). We usually listened to one episode every night just before sleeping so we didn’t really have time to ponder much over it but it had just enough intrigue to keep us awake till it ended. After which it was dreamland, filled with creatures of the podcast, and radio static.
Before we talk about just HOW amazing this podcast is, let’s discuss the plot. The central character of this podcast is our beloved Keisha. She is out on a road-trip, with her truck and her radio, looking for her lost wife, Alice. Since this podcast is written by Joseph Fink, naturally it’s not just that straightforward. Along the way Keisha meets creatures you never want to see and ends up in places you never want to be in. Basically, it’s perfect!
Unlike Nighvale where you are constantly being creeped out by Cecil because of how normally he reacts to crazy shit, in AID Keisha reacts like a normal person to all the shit she sees which makes her super relatable. Because while in Nightvale the mysteries were very open-ended, in AID our confoundment was accepted.
And in the middle of the scenes when we break away from her, it was as if the character was allowing us to experience her anxiety because her anxiety and her fear were ever present. But she never let it hold her back. She used it as her super power.
One of the best parts of this podcast were the repetitions. The description of the thistleman being our favourite. The repetitions created this fixed picture that made everything so real and unchangeable.
And the sounds! Podcasts are nothing without it. The sound of the radio transmission going on and off, and the sound of the truck engines in the background, started growing on us, just like Keisha herself. The footsteps in the back, the “yip yip yip” of the Thistlemen, everything had such power that it gave us goosebumps.
Jasika Nicole has done a fabulous job by voicing Keisha, because she is talking to Alice through the radio and she absolutely loves Alice and Jasika Nicole was able to make us feel all the emotions and we felt like her confidant. Her voice was perfect for all the philosophy, the irony, the humour, and the badassery. It was exciting yet soothing to listen to her speak.
Needless to say we cannot wait for the second season and you guys NEED to listen to it.
(You can also download their app on your phone)
Here is a link to their website, if you’d like to make a donation/buy their merch: Click me
Don’t want to spend a lot of time reading huge ass reviews for books? Welcome to my mini-reviews edition!
If you remember, I had done one a while ago but it was a Mini DNF review. This is my first mini-review of books I’ve read and scrutinized thoroughly *cue professional music*.
Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet by Charlie N. Holmberg
Publication Date: June 28, 2016
Targeted Audience: Young Adult/Adult
[Note: I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Also, this book is technically targeted towards adults since the MC is an adult but young adults can read it too.]
This is the kind of book I give a three star because I liked it… but I also didn’t like it.
Publication Date: June 28, 2016
Publisher: Del Rey
Targeted Audience: EVERYONE
Genre: Epic Fantasy
[Note: I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review]
This book! After having read countless awful books back to back this year, this book was my savior. Firstly, the genre is Epic Fantasy which is my favourite and then we have this amazing cover which includes all the main characters AND an epic tree. *crying because so bootiful*
Moving on to the plot. The story is your usual “good-guy-teams-up-with-good-people-to-save-the-world” arc but obviously the thing that makes this book so different is the characters and the universe that it’s set in. I love Raithe and Malcolm together. Best epic fantasy duo ever. They band together under such unusual circumstances and Malcolm NEVER fails to make me laugh. Then we have Persephone, wife of a fallen leader and possibly one of the strongest female characters ever introduced in an epic fantasy genre. We all love having the bad ass lady but I never knew how much I loved the smart ass ones until Persephone. Finally, we have Suri and Minna, a little girl and her loyal wolf. Beautiful innocent and naive yet badass- Suri. What more could one want?
Weregirl by C.D. Bell
Publication Date: November 1, 2016
Targeted Audience: Young Adult
[Note: I received a free preview copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review]
I didn’t particularly enjoy this novel. I only read the preview and I immediately knew exactly how the book would end. It felt very cliched with the whole girl turns into a werewolf and falls in love with guy who strongly reminded me of Jacob from Twilight. Thanks but I’ll pass on this one.