Friday Morning Bookclub

April 23, 2012

One Of The Strangest Books I Have Ever Listened To! The Night Circus By Erin Morganstern

Filed under: The Night Circus — susanbright @ 1:42 pm
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The Cirque de Reves is a circus unlike any you have ever seen. It appears out of nowhere without warning. It opens at dusk and closes at dawn. You can wander for hours in and out of the various black and white tents. There are acrobats, illusionist, jugglers and contortionists  as well as things that are not so easily explained. Once you arrive you just can’t get enough and when you return the following night it is not unusual to find an empty field with no sign that it had ever been there in the first place.

The circus is the stage for a most unusual competition between Celia and Marco, two magicians who unbeknownst to them had been training all their lives for this. Six year old Celia Bowen was sent to live with her father Hector Bowen also known as Prospero the magician, after the death of her mother. Prospero had no idea that he had a daughter but quickly picked up on her special talents which she had clearly inherited from him. Day after day, he would work with Celia encouraging her to practice and went as far as breaking her hand just so she could use her special powers to mend the bones. While performing on stage one evening, Prospero noticed a familiar face, Alexander, and after the show the two conversed.

“I was hoping you would be up for a game. It has been far too long since we played. Though first you must meet my project”

Celia was surprised when her father introduced her to the man in the grey suit and asked her to show him what she could do, but without hesitation Celia levitated a watch, shattered it and put it back together without ever touching it.

“I could take any child off the street and teach them as much” was Alexander’s response. And so the competition began. Alexander found Marco at an orphanage, isolated him from the world for years and surrounded him with books. Marco was to study and train although he had no idea what he was training for.

Celia and Marco are thrown into a competition of “imagination and will”.  They are given no rules, and have no idea who they were competing against. Nor do they know that there can only be one winner standing at the conclusion of the competition. Of course they fall in love, which only complicates matters. For sheer entertainment, Prospero and Alexander play with the lives of all of those involved in the circus  without any concern for their well-being. To them it was only a game.

The Night Circus was a most unusual story read by Jim Dale, an award-winning actor. It is a work of fantasy, full of magic and certainly entertaining, It makes me wonder how anyone can come up with such a bizarre story line!


January 12, 2012

Mockingjay: The FINAL Book In The Hunger Games Trilogy! Oh No!

It is not often that you come across a book, or in this case 3 books that everyone seems to like, but it looks like The Hunger Games Trilogy is  just that! When I was told about these books, I questioned whether it was my kind of book. First of all, it was written for young adults, not necessarily a bad thing, as The Book Thief, also a young adult book was one of my favorites, but definitely something to consider. Secondly, I rarely read fantasy or science fiction, a genre I just never got into. So why did I pick up the first book in the series? I was intrigued! Everyone was talking about The Hunger Games. And then I saw the trailer for the movie. I knew that I had to at least give the first book in the series a try.

These books should come with a warning: DO NOT READ  UNLESS YOU ARE WILLING AND ABLE TO READ ALL THREE BOOKS IN THE SERIES. You cannot read just one. The Hunger Games (the first book) was definitely my favorite, a five omelet book! I immediately downloaded the second book, Catching Fire and the excitement continued. Although I thought that Mockingjay had a bit too much unnecessary violence and I really don’t understand why certain characters had to die, I still stayed up to the wee hours of the night to finish it.

 My 15-year-old niece read and loved these books, my 28-year-old daughter read and loved these books and now my 80 some year old mother is hooked on The Hunger Games! What is it about these books that makes them so appealing? These books are exciting. They have you sitting on the edge of your seat. They are like a wild ride at the amusement park. You never know what is around the next corner. For a good time…. Read The Hunger Game Series, but be sure to start with #1.

The Hunger Games (first book in The Hunger Games trilogy) *****

Catching Fire (second book in The Hunger Games trilogy)****

Mockingjay (the final book in The Hunger Games trilogy)***

December 26, 2011

The Hunger Games By Suzanne Collins

I get it!  Now I know what all the excitement is about and why everyone is talking about The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  Once you start reading this book, you will not be able to put it down.  The Hunger Games Trilogy is set some time in the future. The United States as we know it is long gone and in it’s place is the country of Panthem, which is divided into 12 Districts. Once a year, one boy and one girl from each District are chosen to compete in The Hunger Games, a reality television show like none other. The contestants or Tributes are taken to the Capitol and must fight until only one person is left alive. To make it even more interesting the Gamemakers have the power to add obstacles and or change the rules at will. It is their job to keep the game interesting.

The Hunger Games is a real page turner. It is exciting as well as suspenseful. You just never know what is going to happen next. Although there is some violence, after all, how could there not be, it is not overly graphic and if I can handle it, anyone can. If you have read my reviews you know that I am the first to put a book down if it is too violent! I enjoyed the book so much that as soon as I read the last page I downloaded the second in the series, Catching Fire (The Hunger Games #2). The Hunger Games is a quick read, not necessarily because it is a short book, but because once you start reading, you will not be able to stop until you read the very last sentence!

Have you read The Hunger Games Trilogy? Do you plan to read it?

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