Tiger’s Curse – A Spoiler Free Review

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Tiger’s Curse Piece by Fallen My Passion on Tumblr

Book: Tiger’s Curse (Number One of the Tiger’s Curse series)

Author: Colleen Houck

Age Group: Young Adult

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Fantasy, Myths

Rating: 3.5/5

I’m back! As mentioned earlier it’s time to start my summer reading and reviews again. It took me a little under a week to read through this novel. A fun read and a great and easy way to launch me into my summer reading schedule.

How did I end up in the middle of the Indian jungle with a tiger? I win the prize for world’s worst decisions. #Kelsey
– Colleen Houck, Reading between the lines in Tiger’s Curse (via thatdayinthecircus)

Tiger’s Curse starts out in Oregon, my own home state, and ends with the idea that she’ll be heading back soon. A nice bookended way to format the novel. I had fun knowing exactly what Colleen Houck was talking about or referring to as the main character Kelsey would refer or compare to something from Oregon. Kelsey just graduated from high school and is looking for a summer job to make some money before she heads off to college in the Fall. She ends up taking on a temporary job at the circus where she is trained to help take care of the animals. She works her way up to the larger animals, a tiger to be exact, and ends up falling in love with his beauty, stubbornness, mannerisms, and much more. Without talking too much about it, she ends up traveling to India with the tiger from the circus and thus begins the real adventure and story of Tiger’s Curse a great combination of Indian mythology, adventure and romance.

Touching on the Indian mythology Tiger’s Curse is full of it! It’s fascinating and I’m sure that more mythology is the follow in the next several books. It talks about Durga, Fanindra, Kappa, The Golden Fruit, and much more to just name a few. It also talks about Indian’s past, present, and ideas for the future. About fashion, food, people, and the language. Multiple times small phrases are dropped within the novel in Hindu, such as “sundari” which means ‘most beautiful’.

Continuing on to discuss the romance in the novel it’s pretty typical for a Young Adult novel. Not too many in depth details, but obviously present to keep the interest of the readers. I found it was almost talked about too much, that Kelsey was a bit of a worry wort and often an over thinker about the situation. Although this seems very characteristic of her character, but I often found myself throwing up my hands or having to set the book down because it was too much. There are ways to discuss how much is going through one’s head then using two pages to talk about the same situation for the up-tenth time.

Things I liked: The mythology, dialogue, characters, locations, and intertwining of the Hindu language.

Things I didn’t like: The constant discussion of the same situation romantically, the perfection of the male characters and how everything seems to always go correctly, the constant need of Kelsey to create drama where there is none, and finally the slow start of Colleen’s writing at the beginning of the novel.

To mention quickly about this last point about Colleen’s writing the start of the novel is a bit rough, but as the novel progresses so does her writing. By the end her sentences are easy to read, understand and derive meaning from.  Don’t let the beginning of the novel’s language scare you away as Colleen takes you on a wild ride throughout India.

With that I leave you with some of my favorite quotes from tumblr:

I warn you, Kelsey, that I’m an extremely patient man. I’ve had extensive practice in waiting out the enemy. My life as a tiger has taught me that attentive persistence and focused diligence always pay off. Consider yourself forewarned, priyatama. I’m on the hunt. I’ve caught your scent, and I won’t be thwarted in my course.
– Ren, Tiger’s Curse (via bilautaa)
We looked at each other for a minute, not saying anything, but I could feel the air between us shift. It became thick, sultry, and tangible—like when the air changes right before a storm. I could feel its power envelop me as it brushed across my skin. Even though I couldn’t see it, I knew a storm was coming.
– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Curse (via quotes-shape-us)
You know you are in love when you see the world in her eyes, and her eyes everywhere in the world.
– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Quest (via kittymudface)
I don’t mind being alone either. The only problem is that if you’re always alone, you get lonely.

– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Curse (via kittymudface)

 

“No matter what happens, please remember that I love you”

 

– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Curse

 

As always all opinions and views noted above are my own. If you’re thinking about buying the book then check out other reviews.

Thank you for taking the time to read this,

~ Yoku

City of Fallen Angels – A Spoiler Free Review

ImageQuote photo by Happiness and the Absurd on Tumblr.

Book: City of Fallen Angels

Author: Cassandra Clare

Age Group: Teen

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Supernatural

Rating: 3.5/5

First off I’d like to say that I found this book very disappointing. I ended my review on the City of Glass skeptical of the fourth book, City of Fallen Angels, as I felt that Clare had resolved everything that needed to be resolved. After finishing City of Fallen Angels, I still feel the same way, that the story should have stopped after City of Glass. It had a dynamic ending and was just enough for readers. Instead, the series has continued with City of Fallen Angels. I’m unsure whether this was the author’s original idea, the publishers pushing her for more of this popular series, or a strong enough fan base behind it pushing it for more. (I especially feel it could be one of those last two.) City of Fallen Angels felt like a fan fiction to me. Don’t get me wrong, the strong writing is there supported by the author’s immense knowledge of classic literature, myths, and stories; but the plot, relationships, and the things that happen all feel too “dreamy” for me. It broke out from its impressive original mold.

With most of the problems I had with the book out of the way I can fan girl for a moment and announce that in this installment they address many of the characters from Clare’s second series, the Infernal Devices, of which I’m a much bigger fan. This book ties the two series together nicely. Clare is once again addressing classic literature, myths, and stories, as mentioned above, and bringing them together in an intriguing way. One of the quotes I found myself posting on Tumblr while reading the book was this (small changes to the quote to cut out spoilers and “…”s were used):

Jace: Remember when I told you that I didn’t know if there was a God or not, but either way, we were completely on our own? I still don’t know the answer; I only knew that there was such a thing as faith, and that I didn’t deserve to have it. … You know that line from Dante that I quoted to you in the park? ‘L’amor che move il sole e l’altre stelle’?

Clary: I still don’t speak Italian.

Jace: It’s a bit of the very last verse from Paradiso — Dante’s Paradise. ‘My will and my desire were turned by love, the love that moves the sun and the other stars’. Dante was trying to explain faith, I think, as an overpowering love, and maybe it’s blasphemous … .”

This intricately shows how well read Clare is and how tied together her ideas of classical literature and her characters are. She also has her own well known quotes, such as the quote-image at the top of this review. Lines like this that stick with us to future novels and into our own lives.

I’m enjoying how Clare is going more in-depth into each of the character’s pasts, especially Maia’s and Magnus’s, so if you’re a fan of either of them you’ll love this read for sure!

Some of the events leading up to and at the end of the novel are still a little far-fetched to me and I’m having a hard time believing them. But they are there none-the-less and yes, I have indeed started the fifth book already.

As always, I only have one set of opinions. Check out other reviews if you’re thinking about purchasing the book yourself.

Thanks for taking the time to read this,

~ Yoku

City of Bones – A Spoiler Free Review

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Movie preview poster for City of Bones

Book: City of Bones

Author: Cassandra Claire

Age Group: Teen

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Supernatural

Rating: 3.5/5

I finished this novel about two days ago, but wanted to sit on it before I breached my review. I read this novel once before, when I was younger, and was enraptured by the environment that Claire created. I craved to be one of them. As Stephenie Meyer points out on the front cover, “The Mortal Instruments series is a story world that I love to live in.” This quote in turn to me could not be more true. By the time I got to the end of the novel though, some of the romance she began to set up rubbed me the wrong way. I lent the book to two other friends and they felt the same way. Every time I tried to pick up City of Ashes I couldn’t help squirming uncomfortably and never got very far into it before setting it down again.

The second time I read it, I found myself less involved deeply in the world, plot, and characters, as I felt that they weren’t as well written, nor portrayed as in Claire’s Infernal Instruments series, this probably being as City of Bones was her first published novel. The characters aren’t as believable, nor as fleshed out as they were in the Infernal Devices. They leave me with blurry images of themselves on godlike tiers in my mind. Her word choices, descriptions, and sentences leave a little something to be desired, although still an enjoyable read.

Claire really understands her audience, the main character of this series being a female and an artist. The main character of the Infernal Devices being an avid book-reader. These connections not only reveal part of Claire herself, but make strong personal connections with her readers. Seeing this trend I can’t wait to see what the main character of Claire’s next Shadowhunter series will be.

This time I knew what ending was coming, so I felt that it didn’t hit me quite as hard. I also remained skeptical of it, as others who are farther along in the series advised me, and looked for Claire’s hints and loopholes that I didn’t read for the first time. In the end, the ending didn’t rub me the wrong way and I have moved onto the second book.

As always, my thoughts and opinions are my own and no one elses. Be sure to check out other sources. Also if you’re a lover of Cassandra Claire and of art, as I am, be sure to check out her amazing tumblr!

Thanks for your time,

~ Yoku