BOOK REVIEWS

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HARRY POTTER

Written by: J.K. Rowling

Admittedly, I postponed reading this book for many years. I’m not sure why. Many times, my girlfriend and various friends asked if I’d read it and when I told them I hadn’t they were surprised.

Honestly, fantasy isn’t one of my favorite genres, but with that being said the book was pretty solid. The characters are likeable, the writing is tight and witty. The pacing is exceptional. As much as I didn’t want to admit it in the beginning, I understand its critical acclaim. World building of this magnitude is incredibly difficult to accomplish.

This is the perfect example of a protagonist and an antagonist that deserve each other. With that being said, there were a few things that struck me as odd that never really got answered. Spoiler alert. Why would you send children into a dark forest as punishment when it’s said in the beginning they are forbidden? Where did Harry’s parents wealth come from? And the biggest question of all… why would you jeopardize children’s safety by keeping the sorcerers stone in the school? 9/10.

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THE SHINING

Written by: Stephen King

Fascinating! I didn’t know what to expect walking into this book. I did see the movie, but it was so long ago and I don’t remember much. I like this genre a lot. It had an element that makes good fiction, psychological horror, paranormal thriller.

The way King portrayed The Overlook Hotel was intense. There are parts of this book that are certainly nail-biting. The most compelling part of this story to me was the scenery. King can paint a picture with words. I felt as if I were at the hotel. The mountains and the snow-capped peaks were descriptive.

Jack Torrance was a brilliantly developed, complicated character. I found his struggle with sobriety and his decaying family life to be intriguing. Again, I felt as if I were inside the hotel with the characters. Wendy and Danny and their growing connection were fun to watch.

The Overlook Hotel was like visiting the best haunted house ever. A couple of scenes played out well in my head. What a profound piece of literary history!

Overall, I give this book an 8/10. It isn’t my favorite King book, but it is exceptional. I would suggest if you haven’t already read it, find it. It holds up after all these years.

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THE PARTNER

Written by: John Grisham

By far the best book I have read all year! Camino Island was a very close second, (also a Grisham novel) but The Partner wins the cake. If you haven’t read this book yet, drop everything and go to your local bookstore. It’s one of those books I couldn’t put down and managed to binge it in a little over a week. John Grisham is one of the greatest storytellers of all time, my opinion.

There are not enough words in the English language to describe the plot of this book. I want to say devious, but that doesn’t even begin to cover it. The plot of this book is extremely complicated and comes to you in these fascinating waves of information. I lost myself in the book and didn’t want to crawl out. 10/10.

I thought I predicted the end of the book, but I was dead wrong. Brilliant! A round of applause for Grisham and the harrowing tale of a crooked lawyer. I had my doubts about this book, but I am glad I picked it up off the shelf, don’t let the cover or the back piece deceive you. 

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CLASSIC HORROR TALES

Written by: Various authors

What a long book. A lot of reading and not a large pay off. Essentially it is a collection of short stories written by authors who have passed away long ago. There are some popular names Poe being perhaps the most recognizable. Bram Stoker was among them (Dracula), which was cool to read a short from him. Among other noteworthy authors was Arthur Conon Doyle (Sherlock Holmes) and H.P. Lovecraft (Shadow Over Innsmouth). There were a few good shorts in this collection, but I had to shovel a lot of bad to get to them. In my opinion, not worth the effort.

It was interesting to see some of the language people wrote in the 1800’s and some of the phrases used now lost over time. Some of the reading was difficult to do, and a dictionary was nearby because the words weren’t modern. The stories that were good were exceptional but don’t go rushing the library on my behalf. 3/10.

Perhaps the best story of the entire collection was a short called The Interlopers by Saki. I know nothing of this author, but that story was fetching. Out of all of them that one stuck with me most. The worst was The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. I tried to understand it and wrap my head around it but couldn’t.

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SO MANY STEPS TO DEATH

Written by: Agatha Christie

I recently heard that when using the 1/10 scale it’s better if you remove the #7. It is a “safe” number and when you remove it, it really shows which way the scale tips. I’m not saying that I won’t use it again in the future, but as for now I’m using this rule. With that being said, I have to give this book a 6.

I’ve thought long and hard about which way I would tip the scale and I could not bring myself to give this book an 8. The main character, Hilary, is unlikeable. Even when she’s at her best, she isn’t that great. In fact, I’d go a step further and say that most of the characters are unlikeable.

Christie is still the queen of plot twists and there is a good one in this book, but not good enough to earn an 8. If you’re an avid Christie fan I say go for it. It does have all the wit and charm that her books do, but this one just didn’t do it for me.

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DRACULA

Written by: Bram Stoker

On a couple of occasions, I had to remind myself it was written at a different time. The pace is rather slow, it doesn’t have that constant, nonstop action like modern books but it does have something else. Stoker had prose, unlike any writer I have ever read before. It’s gritty, almost poetic at points. If you like that gothic, dark undertone, I would recommend, but if you are looking for something quick and easy I would find something else.

Other than the pace my biggest complaint was for a book on Dracula he spends three-quarters absent and almost forgotten. I wasn’t fond of the diary entries which jumped from one character to another to another. I think the story would have been better from one perspective instead of six. 

It is a long book and deserves patience. If it wasn’t for the witty style and devious characters I don’t know if I could have finished. I originally didn’t want to give it a score because I was afraid of disrespecting a classic. 5/10. This book didn’t do it for me. I’m sure it entertained millions, but I am not one of them.

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CAMINO ISLAND

Written by: John Grisham

Gripping! I have been a long time Grisham fan and read many of his novels. This one I could not put down. I know I have used that term before, but this was different. I binge read the entire book, including the first hundred pages the first day I picked it up. I read the novel in six days, which is a short period for me being a full-time employee and active step-father.

Without spoiling too much of the plot, it’s about five missing manuscripts worth a fortune. A company approached an upcoming writer giving her an indisputable offer to go looking for it. She, being buried in student debt accepts the offer and moves to the island in search of the missing books.

This book was epic. There was something about the beach scenes and the jaunty, witty conversations among the main characters that sunk its teeth into me. I haven’t been disappointed by any Grisham book yet. 10/10 and worth every point. If you are looking to lose yourself in a novel, perhaps anticipating the summer, this book will help.

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SLEEPING BEAUTIES

Written by: Stephen & Owen King

There are no words I could say to justify the adventure this book took me on. Praise King and his son for writing a literary masterpiece. If you haven’t read this book yet, drop what you are doing. Without spoiling the plot, I want to know, what would happen if all the women on the planet randomly started falling asleep and not waking up? This book gives you an interesting insight into how things could go.

From the first page, I was compelled. My only complaint is there are a lot of characters. It isn’t too much, but once in awhile, I would find myself wondering, who? Prepare yourself it is a long book, but totally worthwhile. I found myself wondering where entire chapters had gone. I stayed up long nights, flipping pages like a lunatic trying to peel the story as fast as humanly possible.

I rate this book 10/10 and worth every point.

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THE PELICAN BRIEF

Written by: John Grisham

Like a winding road, this book twists and turns. Every time you think you know which way is up, it changes. Smart! You don’t need a law degree to read it, but it wouldn’t hurt. Unlike some of his other works, this one doesn’t involve as much legal jargon that’s both hard to pronounce and impossible to understand.

You can’t help but fall in love with the main character Darby Shaw, who is played by Julia Roberts in the film. She’s everything you want in a protagonist, cunning, brilliant and brave. Her companion Gray Grantham is also an incredible character, portrayed by Denzel Washington in the film.

Like in most cases, I found the book to be superior to the film. If you ask me, I found the film to be too busy, too fast paced. Unlike the book, where you really get a chance to know the characters. It’s hard to fall for Darby’s charm in the movie.

Sometimes when a book has too many villains it gets murky and hard to understand. There were a lot of villains, and I didn’t lose track. Without spoiling too much, I just want to say that it’s incredible a law student could shake the whole country. The only reason I couldn’t bring myself to give it a higher score was the fact that there were too many perspectives. 9/10.

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DOLORES CLAIBORNE

Written by: Stephen King

Dolores Claiborne is an interesting book. For me, it started a little slow. The book did get better, gradually. The plot is curvy and catching. The pace was a little slower than your average King but overall worth reading. I would give this a 7/10. One of my favorite things about this book is the main character. Ms. Claiborne is not a likable character for most of the book. In the end, she is the hero, but it comes about in a strange, unpredictable manner. Another thing I admired about this book was there is a little tip of the cap to another one of King’s books Gerald’s Game. Some readers don’t like when an author mentions or implies something from another book, but I quite enjoy it. It’s much like an inside joke.

There is something to be said about the antagonist of this story as well. It isn’t often the hero and villain are under the same roof. There is suspense in almost every page. For portions of this book I had trouble putting it down. Some of the most memorable characters come from the strangest places.

I have heard a rumor that the movie is good as well, but I have yet to see it. After reading this twisted, suspenseful book, I will certainly be watching the movie. I have even contemplated rereading the book.

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CAT & MOUSE

Written by: James Patterson

Hold onto your hats because this book is a wild ride. I wasn’t prepared for the brilliant twists and turns of this novel. Alex Cross is still one of my favorite fictional characters of all times and the all-star lineup of villains is unparalleled in today's fiction writings.

During this novel, Cross is facing the same villain from the first novel Along Came A Spider. Gary Soneji is a criminal mastermind, who takes no shit. He’s broken out of prison and is provoking Cross on a chase while reaping havoc on the east coast.

Meanwhile, there is a side story about another bad guy named Mr. Smith. Cross has too much on his plate and doesn’t want to get involved with that case, but he finds himself involved when the case lands on his front doorstep, literally.

Nail biting, tantalizing, gripping, everything you would expect from a Patterson novel and more. 9/10 and worth every point.

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FANTASTIC VOYAGE

Written by: Isaac Asimov

I don’t believe I have ever read something like this before. It’s fascinating and not a long book, but worth the investment. On a couple of occasions, the words got technical, mostly medical jargon. If you have access to the internet or a dictionary, you’ll do just fine.

A group of people are shrunk in a submarine and explore through a human body in an attempt to unclog a brain clot. The group consists of mostly government officials, doctors and such, aside from one person who is there to supervise and search for spies in the group. It turns out there is a spy in the group.

I got a lot out of this book, and I believe some people could learn from it too. The story itself isn’t exceptionally written but rather technical. If you are interested in human anatomy, this is the book for you. I would have otherwise never known what the inside of a body might look like. I am going to rate this book at a 7/10. It could have used more character development and description.

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AGAINST ALL ENEMIES

Written by: Tom Clancy

It’s hard to convey the mixed feelings I have about this book. First, I did enjoy the action and quick pace of the scenes. There isn’t a lot of what I call “flowery” prose. The guns are blazing and there is a bomb under the seat. Hold onto your hats because it’s a wild ride.

If you’re looking for a military novel with a lot of specific jargon and detail oriented prose, this is the book for you. It’s not only educational but it’s entertaining.

My main concerns with this book are that there were too many point of views. At times I found it difficult to keep up with all the characters and all of their motivations. Honestly, it may have been better served as two separate novels. Both plot lines are strong and would have worked as their own novels and it would have saved the book from being over seven hundred pages long. Besides, they didn’t overlap so much that they wouldn’t have worked on their own.

At the end of the day, I couldn’t bring myself to give this book anything more than a 7/10 rating. It’s too busy, too much is going on with too many characters and unnecessary side stories.

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FEAR NOTHING

Written by: Dean Koontz

Intricate, devious, suspenseful, give this book praise. This is my first Koontz book. His work came highly recommended from a friend. She loved his work in college and swore by his books.  I wasn’t disappointed. In this instance, I didn’t even read the piece on the back because I didn’t want to be swayed in any direction. I wanted to go in as blind as I could.

Koontz has the goods. He is a great storyteller and paints a Mona Lisa with his words. My biggest complaint, the unnecessary use of big words. I understand you are a smart man, but the layman doesn’t know what half of those words mean. I struggled with some of them and thought there was an easier way. This book was thought-provoking and sinister in ways I hadn’t expected. Koontz kept me on the edge of my seat for nearly two hundred pages of tantalizing build.

Never in all the books I have read, did I read one where a dog was a dominant character, which came as a big surprise, although a risky move, it paid off immensely. I loved the dog Orson and how he interacted with the main character Chris Snow. Their relationship is certainly book-worthy. I tip my cap to you Mr. Koontz, good work. If it weren’t for the use of such confusing language and the predictability of the ending, it would have gotten a higher score. 8/10.

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THE DEAD ZONE

Written by: Stephen King

Without spoiling too much of the plot, the book is about a young man who goes into a coma. The plot picks up after he comes out of the coma with a special gift. I loved the idea of the plot and the lack of heroism. He has a gift and doesn’t let it go to his head, or sink into the fame.

Unfortunately for me, I watched the movie before the book. Don’t judge the book by what you saw in the movie. I was a fan of both, but one far more than the other. The book was a good read. It was adventurous and compelling. I think my favorite thing about this book was the honesty. It isn’t often that you come across people, especially not in literacy that speaks such brutal honesty. Some of the things the characters say and do are too true to be fiction. The love interest in this book was something, unlike anything I have read before. It was complicated, but bittersweet in its unique way.

 The book is interesting. The story is easy to follow, and more thrilling than the movie. Johnny Smith is a very dynamic character, and you can’t help feeling his life in peril. The story explains the repercussions of one accident and how it affects everyone in the book. It is something unlike anything else I have read from King. The scenes are well described and brilliant. I liked the book I reviewed before this one, Gerald’s game, a little more. I would recommend it and give it a 7/10. If you haven’t seen the movie, read the book first.

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ALONG CAME A SPIDER

Written by: James Patterson

Alex Cross is one of the most dynamic protagonists of all time. I don’t know of too many main characters that can grip, pull your heart strings and make you laugh in the same sentence. I have read some of the rest of this series out of order, believe me, it holds up. I read what was available to me while seeking the earlier books, no regrets. It hasn’t made any difference to me thus far because each book holds up so well under its merit.

Hooray for Patterson. Gary Soneji is one twisted, badass, villain. He is one of the least likely guys to do such a thing, or so his family says. The way the characters bounce off each other is mesmerizing. I don’t want to spoil too much in case you decide to read this, but there is a lot more to it than just Soneji kidnapping a couple of high profile child celebrities. This story is complex, with a little office romance, media hatred and a lot of pivotal turns.

It’s a long read, but worth every page. If you are looking for an adventure, I say run to the library this instant. This review can wait. 9/10. It’s one of the best Patterson books I have read in a while, and I look forward to continuing down the series, hopefully in better order this time. 

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THE ASSOCIATE

Written by: John Grisham

Suspenseful, gripping, nail-biting. Grisham at his finest. If you are looking for that simple, but in your face, action-packed prose, this is the book for you. There are a couple of stretches that get extremely technical, plenty of lawyer talk, but for the most part, this book entices. I read it quickly, loving the characters and the predicament. This has a lot of similarities to spy novels if that’s something that interests you. I know I enjoyed the back and forth between good and evil.

An upcoming lawyer blackmailed into spying on one of the biggest law firms in the world. Kyles life is falling apart when his past and his present are clashing and creating a dismal future.

One excellent book. If you are looking for a good legal thriller and have the patience for a longer book, this is for you. A friend of mine came to me with this book, and I had to read it. I guess if I had to scale this book, 8/10. I don’t have many complaints, the biggest being the protagonist was kind of a pushover from time to time. In some scenes, he had brass and vigor, and in other scenes, he was on the verge of pissing his pants. I wasn’t impressed with the ending. I don’t want to spoil the ending you may read it, but it wasn’t for me. Don’t let my opinion of two pages persuade you not to read the rest.

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THE GREEN MILE

Written by: Stephen King

What an exhilarating read this book has been. The characters came to life on every page. It isn’t often you come across a book so genuine, strange, but heart felt. I had a hard time putting this book down and read it in long, fast sweeps. It is an extremely well written, page turner. If you haven’t read it before, I advise you to get a copy of it. 9/10 rating.

I know a lot of people judge this book by its movie. In this instance, I think that is a fair judgment. The book and the movie go hand in hand, more so than any other book and movie I have come across. It has been a few years since seeing the movie, but from what I remember, it was brilliant and exciting just like the book. I always advise reading the book first, but if you have already seen the movie, go back and read the book anyway. It is worth it.

There are scenes written in prison so well done; you would think you are standing outside of one of the cells. I admired the plot and all the characters, even the pesky ones. They were unpredictable, which added a lot to the story. Paul Edgecombe is an extremely well-rounded protagonist, following his journey through the years working death row was more than your average King experience.

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NEVER NEVER

Written by: James Patterson

As a long time, fan of Patterson, I was excited when I saw this on the shelf. I read the back of the book, and it seemed different from his normal work. I was excited to dive into this book and wasn’t disappointed. Nonstop action and suspense. The characters are well written and collaborative. The book is descriptive, and you can almost feel the desert sun searing your skin.

I liked this book a lot, giving it a 9/10. One of my favorite things about this book is the mystery aspect of it. Not to mention the protagonist and antagonist are profound characters, which are on a dismal hunt for one another. The book is difficult to put down. Patterson’s style and easy readability do this nail-biter wonders. I highly recommend if you like James Patterson’s work even a little, give this book a chance.

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THE RUM DIARY

Written by: Hunter S. Thompson

While reading this book, I had a lot on my mind. I didn’t read it with the same lustful approach as most books. I like the style in which Thompson writes. I had never read one of his books before this, and I like how smooth and zippy his prose is. I will keep him in mind next time I walk aimlessly through a bookstore. If you haven’t given his work a shot, you absolutely should.

A journalist moves to Puerto Rico for work. When he gets there, he meets a group of characters who all work for the paper and they inform him that it is going broke. His boss is nutty, and his coworkers are troublesome. During a night on the town, one of his co-workers gets them into a fight with some locals. The guys from the paper wind up in jail with little hope for bail. This example is one of the many predicaments Paul Kemp finds himself in during his stay in Puerto Rico. Every chapter is a different yet fascinating adventure in this foreign land. The language barrier and cultural differences play wonderfully in the confusion and chaos.

I recommend this book highly. It isn’t like most books the edges are jagged and the action is consistent. If you are looking for a book with a lot of beautiful scenes and well-described locations, this is not the book for you. The book focuses mostly on the action and keeps the frills to a minimum. 8/10.

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DARKNET

Written by: Matthew Mather

The Darknet was a compelling, cyberthriller. The plot follows a young man who defies all the odds to destroy an autonomous computer system which is hijacking the stock market and many companies involved in the trade. During the process, the main character's daughter becomes abducted, and he does everything he can to retrieve her, including walking into the enemy’s trap. This same internet entity created an online assassin’s market and whose name is online for the highest bid?

It was a great read, but I could see it being difficult for some people who aren’t computer friendly. There is a lot of complex computer talk in the book, some of it too much for the average reader (myself included). If you can put that aside and just follow the story, it is worth the read. This story was a good adventure. The characters were deep and emotional. The plot was twisty and unpredictable. There were a lot of good action scenes, and the characters were clever.

Overall, I would give this book a 7/10. Mather is one of my favorite authors, but this wasn’t one of my favorites. I would recommend his book Nomad over this one. Also, among his collection, Cyberstorm.

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NEXT OF KIN

Written by: James Tucker

Unbelievable, extraordinary, exceptional. Where do I begin? What a journey! If you are looking for a book to get you through the last few weeks of winter, this is your book. I binged most of it because I couldn’t put it down. It has short, punctual chapters like James Patterson, but tantalizing plot points like John Grisham.

Without spoiling the entire book, it’s about an extremely rich family who is getting eradicated by a serial killer. One kid, Ben, survives the first attack. Ben is brought to a detective for protection and things that ensue are nail-biting. The serial killer attempts to attack again and again.

What a brilliant plot twist. I didn’t even see it coming. When you read a lot, usually you have a hunch who the killer might be, or how they got away. Not in this case. I guess the biggest surprise for me is the fact that this is James Tucker’s first book. One doesn’t write like that without a lot of practice. I look forward to the next one. 9/10.

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THE ROOSTER BAR

Written by: John Grisham

               

Wow! Spectacular read. A harrowing tale about three law students and their pursuit to escape their school debt. As a long fan of Grisham, I anticipated the release of the book and couldn’t wait to get it.

The rooster bar is one of the wittiest books I have read in a long time. I love the way the Grisham creates brilliant characters. The three main characters are insanely smart law students, who play the system from the very beginning. I speed read this book because I couldn’t stop. The insight of the legal system and the loan sharks fascinated me. A pat on the back for one great novel.

I have no complaints about this book except I wish it were longer, but isn’t that always the case with good books? 10/10.

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THE LAST DEAD GIRL

Written by: Harry Dolan

Can I start from the beginning? Can I reread this book? I’m still baffled. It came heavily recommended, no insisted, by a friend of mine. He hounded me about it for a week, and I put it off until eventually I broke down and bought a used copy. I am glad I did. It wasn’t that I didn’t trust his opinion, believe me, we have a similar taste, but my pile of unread books is already enormous. This book went right to the top, and I started it the instant it landed on my doorstep.

The last dead girl is the first Dolan book I have ever read, and I will not hesitate to read another one. Although he hasn’t written many books, he is good. He captured me from the beginning. This book has so many twists and turns, and it’s impossible to predict. When you think you are on the right track, you’re wrong. Impeccable writing. I wish I could write characters like him.

The protagonist, David Malone, an ordinary working-class man, is trying to solve the mysterious murder of his girlfriend Jana, with little evidence. Malone doesn’t know what he is getting himself into and finds the killer is several steps ahead. I can’t explain too much without giving away key plot points. Trust me on this one. If you don’t have this book on your shelf, you should.

One of my favorite things about this book is the way the antagonist, K, is written. He is this bad guy, who you follow through the story and he is an extremely well-rounded character with as little information as one could write without giving away his identity. How long Dolan managed to keep his anonymity is amazing, and I fell right in love with the mystery. 10/10.

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IT

Written by: Stephen King

Magical, maniacal, exhilarating. King at his absolute finest. If you are looking to sink your teeth into a good book, this is the one. It isn’t a quick book, standing at over a thousand pages, it requires a little commitment. It didn’t feel like a thousand plus pages for me. In some instances, fifty pages passed by in what felt like the blink of an eye.

It is perhaps the best villain of all time. Pennywise, the dancing clown, is terrifying. His psychological games are amusing and horrific. Perhaps one of the best things about the mysterious clown is the backstory, left to the kid’s speculation. It takes many shapes and forms, leaving you on the edge of your seat. There is always something to be looking out for, anything the loser’s club’s imagination can conjure could be an object of Pennywise’s devious plan.

Although part horror, this book is also a little “chuckalicious” as Richie Tozier (a character in the book) might say. There is no better love story in fiction than the loser’s club’s undying honor, gratitude, and conviction. The fact that the kids in this book are willing to die for each other is tear-jerking in itself.

I knew how I was going to rate this book within the first fifty pages, and I never second-guessed it. The perfect score, 10/10.  Don’t judge the book based off any of the film adaptations. They were good, but you miss out on so much of the actual story.

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THE HUNGER GAMES

Written by: Suzanne Collins

This book was nothing short of amazing. Being my first book from Suzanne Collins, I was vastly impressed. The characters were all fascinating. I tried my best not to let the movie affect my opinion on the book; both were well done. Katniss was, and still is, one of the most well-rounded characters in fiction. I have never felt I truly knew another character like this one. The insight she gives into the life of each poverty-stricken district is surreal.

I love the real meat of this story, although at moments it’s a little graphic, it’s brutality and courageousness is unnerving. There is simply nothing else like it. This book shows humility in places you would never expect. It shows layers of companionship and trust in places where tenderness and sympathy replaced with brutality and violence.

I recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick read. I have yet to read any of the sequels, but I certainly intend to. 9/10 review. I don’t have any solid complaints about this book. The way Katniss challenges the establishment and sacrifices herself in place of her sister are unforgettable.

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AN OVERDOSE OF DEATH

Written by: Agatha Christie

Sharp, quick-witted prose with an excellent protagonist. An overdose of death is not the first Christie book I have read, but it is the first I have read in an extremely long time. She has a style of writing which can’t be mistaken for anyone else.

It’s hard to explain what this book is about but I will try my best because the plot is exceptionally weaved and deceptive. Hercule Poirot is a private eye who is investigating the suicide of a dentist. Poirot doesn’t believe it’s a suicide. He believes from the very beginning that the dentist has been murdered, most likely by one of his patients. There are five or six patients in question, and Poirot is knocking on doors and asking questions when one of the suspects mysteriously dies. Shortly after that, another one of the suspects disappears. Poirot finds himself chasing his tail trying to figure out what happened to the dentist and his two suspects.

I don’t want to say anymore because I might give away some of the plots and I don’t want to spoil the rest in case anyone gives it a read. The one thing I didn’t like about the book was that it lacked basic description. It was a good mystery, and I admit that it fooled me with the red herring, in part. I did figure out some of the mystery. As I said, it’s weaved and deceptive. There is a lot to figure out, and I missed some.

It’s a small book, and one could feasibly read it in a matter of a few days. 7/10 is the best I can offer. If it had some better description and more detail of the characters, I think it would have been much better.

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THE ANDROMEDA STRAIN

Written by: Michael Chrichton

Bizarre, intense, fascinating. This is the first Michael Crichton book I have ever read. The plot was suspenseful and the book pulled me in from the beginning. A friend of mine told me this was one of his favorite books, and he talked me into it. Crichton has a direct style of writing, which is suitable for something of this books nature. Crichton’s eye for miniscule detail is amusing. His precision is incomparable to any other author.

The Andromeda Strain is a virus which comes into Piedmont, Arizona on the back of a comet. Concerned town folk accidentally further the spread of the virus, which kills almost the entire town. Two survivors are found and quarantined. From the moment the scientist enter the lab it is a race to figure out how the strain works and prevent further spread, which could annihilate the entire country.

I vastly enjoyed the plot, but I feel the characters and some of the scenes lacked basic description. This is essential for me to enjoy a story. I had trouble envisioning what the characters looked like. If the book had a little more description I would have given it a better rating. It stands at a 7/10.