Url Phantomhive

Url Phantomhive

Trying to shed a light on the wonderful maze of books...

Review
3 Stars
Manga Classics: The Jungle Book
The Jungle Book: Manga Classics - Kipling, Crystal S. Chan

I've read most of the other Manga classics, and they were always nice, so even though I had only seen the Disney movie with the same name, I wanted to read this version of the Jungle book.

I had some problems at first to get into the short story collection, probably since I was unaware that the original stories were quite different from the movie, and did not seem to follow in a chronological order. One of the stories even takes place in icy seas so I didn't associate that with jungle either. But once I settled for this I was glad for it. The way some of the original prose was kept in the manga was great.

Also, most importantly, it made me curious towards The Jungle Book, even though I previously read some of Rudyard Kipling's work in a Little Black Classic and was slightly disappointed with it.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
4 Stars
Rivers Of London: Black Mould
Rivers of London Volume 3: Black Mould - Ben Aaronovitch, Andrew Cartmel, Lee Sullivan

I was looking forward to this so much I pre-ordered it three months in advance (something I'm not wont to do). When it finally arrived I was looking for a particular good moment to sit down with it and  read it in one go.

The comics of Rivers of London are a nice addition to the main series, although it doesn't seem they are essential to the overall plot of the series. Nevertheless I've been enjoying them a lot and would certainly recommend them to fans of the series. Black Mould, as the name suggests deals with an infestation of sentient mould and was another good read. The only complaint I had was that the solution felt a bit rushed, but this was not a major problem.

Review
4 Stars
Rivers Of London: Night Witch
Rivers of London: Volume 2 - Night Witch - Ben Aaronovitch, Lee Sullivan Hill, Andrew Cartmel

For years I've been following Peter Grant around as he manages his business with the Rivers of London and all other magical creatures in London. The comic series, for me, was the latest instalment and after some initial hesitation, I'm really glad I joined in on them.

While they are (so far as I can tell) not a major part of the continuing story of the books it is a great addition to them. This was involves a lot of Russians, and I admit there was some initial anxiety when the first page was in Russian, I couldn't understand a word of it and I believed I had accidentally  ordered the wrong edition (my sister once ordered a German comic by mistake). Luckily, the rest was (mostly) in English!

I'm really looking forward to the rest of this series.

Review
2.5 Stars
The Circle
The Circle Vol. 1 - Damon Clark, Alyzia Zherno, Ivan Shavrin, David Murdoch

I fell for The Circle because of the nice cover. The art inside is slightly different, but still the strongest point of the graphic novel.

Christian has just moved to a rather boring small town and has some troubles adjusting and finding new friends. That is, until he’s tricked by a couple of teenagers with sinister plans to be a part of their circle. Things go wrong quickly from there.

It was a very quick read, but the story was not that interesting. It has all been done before and especially Christian is so very naïve. Also, it was as if a lot of the story was missing still because a lot happens in such a small number of pages that the events (and the ‘why’s behind it) stayed un(der)developed.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
5 Stars
City Of Miracles
City of Miracles - Robert Jackson Bennett

With City of Miracles one, if not the best, fantasy series of the last couple of years comes to an end. I cannot start to express just how much I loved reading them. The world is so complex, as are the characters, and these series is so emancipated that I really couldn't tell if they male of female based on their position (but without making a show of it, which means it felt all the more real). Before I just keep rambling about the series, let me tell you one thing: it comes highly recommended! (But start with City of Stairs, the first one)

City of Miracles follows Sigrud, some fifteen years after the previous books, as he learns of Shara's dead. I was shocked at this at first, since she was the main character from the first book, but it really works. As Sigurd tries to protect her daughter, he learns about something that is bigger than them all.

I enjoyed it so much I don't know how to put it best into words. I recommend taking some proper time to really immerse yourself into the world because it will be worth it. It is not often that I'm so saddened by a book, but the ending was right in the feels. I also felt some pain because it meant this adventure is over. Did Robert Jackson Bennett write other books besides The Divine Cities? If so, I must get them NOW.

Thanks to Blogging for Books and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
3.5 Stars
Machinations
Machinations - Hayley Stone

Machinations follows Rhonda, recently returned from the dead (she's a clone of her previous self) because her job, as a hallmark of the rebellion against the machines isn't over.

In this robot-apocalypse, where the bots have decided to fight 'the war to end all wars' by exterminating people, what drew me most was the struggles Rhonda had with coming to terms with one) dying and second) coming back.

It made a nice and interesting read and I certainly plan to read the sequel as well.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
2.5 Stars
How To Survive A Robot Uprising
How to Survive a Robot Uprising: Tips on Defending Yourself Against the Coming Rebellion - Daniel H. Wilson

I was expecting something slightly more funny and less serious, but How to Survive a Robot Uprising tackles the upcoming robot-apocalypse describing different types of robots that will bring our demise. It is easily portable and fits in a pocket, gives tips about escaping a smart house and if anything, made me aware of all the possible thing that can kill me.

Quick read, not as funny as I expected it to be though, and I'm afraid that in the event of a robot-apocalypse most of the information might be out-dated.

Review
3 Stars
Pixar Manga: Finding Nemo
Disney Pixar Finding Nemo Manga--Special Collector's Edition (Pixar Manga Collection) - Ryuichi Hoshino

The Finding Nemo Manga, as others in the PopTokyo series, follows the story of the movie quite strict, so it is more of a re-watch than an addition to the movie. For me, it was a nice way to brush up Finding Nemo in time for Finding Dory, the sequel.

At the start there is some extra information on the different characters, but otherwise, expect the movie is manga-form, the art style also resembles that of the movie.

Nice for fans of Finding Nemo and Pixar!

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
4 Stars
Laser Moose And Rabbit Boy
Laser Moose and Rabbit Boy - Doug Savage

Laser Moose and Rabbit Boy may seem an unlikely duo, but they make a very cute one. Together they protect their forest from threats, all the while Laser Moose shoots, ehm, lasers from his eyes.

While aimed at children, this comic book is also very nice for adults. There are some nice mysteries in it, I was pleasantly surprised.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
1 Stars
Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows  - J.K. Rowling

The review below was based on my first read of the Harry Potter books, ages ago and in Dutch. Updated reviews will follow after a reread (in English) I plan to do.

 

I was particularly disappointed when I just finished reading it, see review below. I'm very curious what I will think of it when I reread it for the first time. I think I will be less harsh this time.

 

I thought this to be the worst book of the series. Most important reason 

the end. I thought that was horrible. Harry Potter should have died to end the series properly. This dying and not really dying, I didn't like it. It seemed to me that Rowling was so attached to Harry Potter that she couldn't let him die. Even though it had been better for the books.

(show spoiler)

 

There were other things I didn't like either in this book. You could see a change in how they react on the death of people. First, there is a lot to do about everyone who dies. But in the end it is like she is rushing through this part and they see all those death people and only think 'whatever?'. (At least it gave me that impression). I do like that part when Harry, Ron and Hermoine live in Sirius' old home with that house-elf (I don't know how he's called in English).
This was my least favorite of the Harry Potter books, I had hoped for it to have a better ending...

Review
4 Stars
Yea Though I Walk
Yea Though I Walk - J. P. Sloan

I had previously read some books from JP Sloan (The Curse Merchant) but they were quite different from Yea Though I Walk, which I can only describe as a gritty Paranormal Western Horror. Talk about blending some genres together.

I'm normally not really someone for the Western genre, but the grittiness of it really added to the story. Add to that the Wendigo and vampires and it made a surprisingly entertaining read. I think the main character, Odell, could have been fleshed out a bit more (no pun intended) but otherwise a really nice read.

Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Review
4.5 Stars
Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - J.K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré

The review below was based on my first read of the Harry Potter books, ages ago and in Dutch. Updated reviews will follow after a reread (in English) I plan to do.

 

After the first time I read the series, this has remained one of my favourites, even though the ending must have been spoilt to me at least a hundred times, so that part didn't come as a surprise. However, I really liked this book and I think it contains some of the most compelling scenes from the series.

Certainly recommended!

Review
3 Stars
Woman Much Missed
Woman Much Missed (Little Black Classics #14) - Thomas Hardy

I'm not very experienced in reading poetry. I can say I like it, but always is small portions. Woman Much Missed collects poems Thomas Hardy wrote after losing his wife in 1912. Therefore, they are all dark in sadness, but beautifully so as Hardy struggles with his loss. There was a lot of symbolism there that I quite liked, but after awhile it was rather heavy and I am wondering if it really is a representative sample of his writing (as it was all inspired by one tragic event).

Little Black Classics ~ #14

Review
4.5 Stars
Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix  - J.K. Rowling

The review below was based on my first read of the Harry Potter books, ages ago and in Dutch. Updated reviews will follow after a reread (in English) I plan to do.

 

My gosh, this is quite the long story for a child to read. But I really liked it. Some called it too political, some a little bit boring, but for me this is one of three Potter books I like best (after HP and the Prisoner of Azkaban & HP and the Half blood prince). I liked the Order of the Phoenix and Dumbledores Army, but I couldn´t stand Umbridge (for understandable reasons).

 

Of course I believe everyone should at least have read this series once, so I would definitely recommend this book to everyone. But start at the beginning!

Review
4 Stars
Ik Hou Van Artis
Ik hou van Artis het park, de dieren, de mensen - Jan Paul Schutten, Nienke Denekamp

Een aantal jaar had ik een abbonement op Artis, de oudste dierentuin van Nederland, en omdat ik dat altijd erg leuk vond was ik ook nieuwsgierig naar Ik Hou Van Artis. Het staat vol met verhalen van medewerkers en bezoekers en veel mooie foto's. Heel leuk om eens te bekijken.

~

Some years ago I used to visit Natura Artis Magistra (Artis for short) quite a lot and I always enjoyed visiting The Netherlands' oldest zoo (1837) so I was interested in this book. It's filled with nice stories from visitors and workers alike and contains also a lot of nice (old) pictures. I really enjoyed going through it.

Review
4 Stars
Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - J.K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré

The review below was based on my first read of the Harry Potter books, ages ago and in Dutch. Updated reviews will follow after a reread (in English) I plan to do.

 

The Prisoner of Azkaban was my favorite book of the series, so it's obvious I didn't like this one as much as I did the third. In my opinion it took too long before Harry and his friends are actually going to school again. And I always liked the schoolparts of the stories best. I liked the end of this book...


I thought you can really feel that Rowling is willing to make her books 'darker' and more sinister in comparison with the first books.

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