Pulse – Patrick Carman

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Title: Pulse
Author: Patrick Carman
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Year Published: 2013
Page Count: 371
ISBN: 9780062085771

I first found out about Pulse when I was on a Goodreads hyperlink clicking frenzy one night. It popped up in the ‘recommendations’ section, and the cover instantly intrigued me. The first thing I thought when I saw the cover was how it gave me a Divergent feel. I mean look at it. It has a random landscape in the background, the foreground has a prominent icon that is presented with circle symmetry, and the typography is a simple bold typeface. The similarities are even stronger when you consider the fact that Katherine Tegen is the publisher of the Divergent series. I’m sensing that someone in the marketing department of this publishing house thought that they could draw off the sales of Divergent by making it seem similar. Divergent similarities aside, I do really love this cover, and it is definitely what made me want to read more about it.

 

Pulse is set in the future, year 2051 to be precise. The world is in drastic climate change, and to protect the populations, countries worldwide have created states (I’m not quite sure why they thought this was the best solution as I can’t remember). In the former USA, two states exist: the Western State and the Eastern State. Between these two is a vast expanse of abandoned towns and small communities housing outsiders – people who are reluctant to assimilate into these newer states. Every day the states’ boundary lines expand, and more outsiders make the decision to join either of the states. Faith Daniels is one of the outsiders, facing the difficulties of living on the outside. Resources are tight, friends are leaving, and the schooling system is slowly diminishing. Within this world, some are gifted with the pulse – the ability to move objects with your mind. With the help of her classmate Dylan Gilmore, Faith discovers that she has the pulse, and is dragged into a battle against the people with pulses who are meant to be the bad guys (it gets really confusing to understand why exactly they’re fighting, hence why I say meant to be the bad guys). Continue reading

Love Letters to the Dead – Ava Dellaira

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Title: Love Letters to the Dead
Author: Ava Dellaira

Publisher: Hot Key Books
Year Published: 2014
Page Count: 327 pages
ISBN: 9781471402883

Love Letters to the Dead is a book that I have been excited for since I first saw it on Goodreads earlier in the year. I had been hearing such positive things about the book, and it wasn’t until I had it on order and was waiting for it in the mail that my closest friend had warned me that she had seen more negative than positive things about this book. I didn’t let this worry me because I was still so excited for this book. It came as a major disappointment though that this book was not what I was expecting at all and that I ended up not really enjoying it.

Love Letters to the Dead is about Laurel, a freshmen dealing with the loss of her older sister May. Laurel’s English teacher assigns the class an assignment of writing a letter to a dead person. Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain, but never turns the assignment in. Instead, over the span of a year, writing letters to famous dead people becomes Laurel’s hobby, and she writes letters to Kurt Cobain, Judy Garland, Elizabeth Bishop, River Phoenix, Ameila Earhart, Amy Winehouse, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Heath Ledger, Allan Lane, E.E Cummings, and John Keats. This was my first problem with this book. I couldn’t really connect to these people she wrote to. Most of them I had either never heard of, or only in passing conversations have I picked up on their names, so I couldn’t really connect with who they were or why Laurel was writing to them. Why would any of those people care about some petty schoolgirl issues? And Laurel would try and connect how her problems were similar to these dead peoples problems, but no matter how you write it, petty school girl problems just can’t compare. Continue reading

The Giver – Lois Lowry

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Title: The Giver
Author: Lois Lowry

Publisher: Harper Collins Children’s Books
Year Published: This edition 2008, original edition 1993
Page Count: 224

The Giver is a book that before reading I didn’t know a whole lot about. I had never really heard of it apart from seeing it in Goodreads lists of best YA ever, or best dystopian ever, or something else along the lines of that. My motivation then for reading this was primarily due to the movie being released next month (yes, I’m aware it is already out if you live in the USA. Sadly, in Australia the date got pushed back until September), and I’m someone who prefers to read the book before I see the movie. That being said, I had watched the movie trailers before I read this book, but on completion of reading I can already see that the two mediums will be partially different.

 

The Giver is set in a community in which there is no war, no hunger, and no pain. The people living there literally have no memories or knowledge of what these things are, or what they would feel like to live through. Everything is carefully planned and organised so that the community can be as perfect as possible. Only one person – The Giver – has this forgotten knowledge. At the end of each year, a ceremony for each age group of children up to 12 is held. For the ceremony of the twelve’s, the children receive the jobs that they will hold for their lives. Jonas is selected as the Receiver of Memory, meaning he will have the role of the Giver in the future community. As Jonas undertakes his training, he learns of the secrets that are kept hidden from the community, and begins to question almost every aspect of the “perfect” world he lives in. Continue reading

If You Find Me – Emily Murdoch

 

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Title: If You Find Me
Author: Emily Murdoch

Publisher: Indigo
Year Published: 2013
Page Count: 312

If You Find Me is a book that took me by surprise in regards to how much I enjoyed it. It has easily become one of my favourite books of all time, and definitely deserves a 5-star rating.

 

If You Find Me is told in the perspective of Carey. For as long as she can remember, Carey has lived in the woods with her mother and younger sister Jenessa. Her mother is addicted to drugs, and it is up to Carey to be responsible for her sister and herself, even though she is only a teenager. Her mother told her that they escaped to the woods because her father used to hit them, and that the woods would protect them from him. One day, Carey and Jenessa are rescued from the woods, and sent to live with her father. Only once they are back in the real world and are learning to readjust to society does Carey learn the truth, that her mother kidnapped Carey from her father’s custody. Now, with a bright future ahead of her, Carey struggles with the secret of the woods, a secret so big it made her sister decide to stop talking, and a secret that could ruin everything.
I have never read a book like this before. I’m sure books with a similar plot do exist out there, but this is the first I have read, and so for me personally, I love how unique this book is. I went into this book expecting it to be set mostly in the woods. I think I got this assumption from the front cover, with the tagline “what happens in the woods, stays in the woods…”, and with the title being If You Find Me, it makes it seem that there is going to be some chase through the woods. I was completely wrong. Only the first chapter or so occurs in the wood, and this book therefore is primarily about how two girls readjust to society. I am kind of glad that I was wrong with these assumptions, because the story I got instead was so breathtakingly beautiful.

 

One of my favourite things about this book is the realistic characters. Whilst living in the woods, Jenessa and Carey only had each other. Their mother was only half-there, too addicted to drugs to be of much support to the girls. She also caused her fair share of emotional damage by some of the things she makes Carey do in order to have her drug money. Once back to society, it becomes evident just how many people are there to support them; their father, Melissa, Ryan, even Delaney to some extent. Continue reading

From one book lover to another

Helllllllo!

My name is Tanaya. I’m a 20-year-old marketing and media student from Sydney, Australia. I have a love of books. Buying books. Reading books. Talking about books. Books, books, books. I’m one of those readers who fall in love with pretty covers, to the point where I would say I have book OCD. What’s this, you may ask? I characterise it as my need to have books of a series all with the same cover, the same height, and no dents or marks on the covers or pages. Friends who have borrowed books from me have learnt the hard way of my distaste to dog earing pages (seriously though, just use a bookmark!).

 

Living in Australia means that we get a variety of cover options. We get a mix of the U.S and the U.K covers, and occasionally we’re special enough to have Australian covers! This can be seriously frustrating. Most of the time the cover I want is the one I can’t find. Or, I can find it online if I want to pay double what I would for the cover I don’t want. I’m someone who will buy books I want almost as soon as they are released. If they are a series, by the release of the next book, sometimes the bookshops will have switched from selling one country’s cover to a different country’s cover. To buy the next book means buying mismatched covers. It seems petty, I know. Believe me when I say I see the looks I get from my friends and family when I share my annoyances in mismatched books. I see their judgmental eyes, and their flippant attitudes. I think everyone has mostly learnt to just roll their eyes and let me have my moment. All I know is, I judge books by their covers, the prettier, the better. You could say that I’m a collector of pretty books.

 

I’m a lover of young adult fiction. The majority of the books on my shelves fall into this genre, and I would say I’ve been reading this genre since I was around 13. I love YA contemporaries and dystopians. Particularly in recent months, my tastes for books have changed. I’m slowly finding interests in adult fiction, and pinpointing specific topics that interest me. One of my goals is to begin reading the classics. To date, I’ve only read a handful of classics. You could literally count the classics I’ve read on one hand. This blog will be my thoughts and opinions on the books I read. It will mostly be dominated by young adult reads, but I’m sure you will see the influence of other genres also.

 

I’m a little apprehensive about this blogging thing. I’ve always loved writing, but I hate showing others what I write. It doesn’t matter what style either. Whether it be essays, stories, reviews, and the like, I equally keep my writings to myself. I’m in my third year of uni (university/college for all of you out there who don’t understand the abbreviation) and only show my essays to my closest friend to proofread and make sure I’m doing the right thing. Apart from her, no one else is privileged to read my writing (with the exception of my teachers because someone has to give me the marks), and even then it took a good year to show her. I want to overcome this nervousness, and this is partially the reason behind my starting of a blog. The other reason I’m starting this blog is because in the past year I have decided that my love of books and reading is not irrelevant to my future career. I want to work in the marketing of books, and so I’m starting this blog to show an interest in the industry I want to work in.

 

So this is me. An Australian girl obsessed with books who has OCD tendencies. A girl who gets nervous of people reading her writing. A girl with a seriously long to be read list (currently at 708 books on my Goodreads) that seems to grow faster than it shrinks (does anyone else have that problem of going on Goodreads to add one book and ending up on a hyperlink-clicking-frenzy that results in an hour wasted and an additional amount of books in their tbr list?). I’m just a girl who could happily spend my life reading.

 

Welcome to my blog.