Many thing in my life this month have not gone to plan this month. So it isn’t surprising this was not the review I was going to write for September, but it is the review that was clamouring to be written. This month I was lucky to be transported to my happy place two books that really “wowed” me. You know the type; the books you just can’t put down until they’re finished. Then, when you reach the end, you’re sad because there’s nothing left to read. These are the books I want to share with you.
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
I reviewed on of Matt Haig’s books last month. I really enjoy his quirky story lines. even so, I did not expect to be so blown away by The Midnight Library.
The blurb starts off , “Between Life and Death There is a Library”, and went on to tell of Nora Seed who is stuck in that moment between life and death where she had the opportunity to live her life if she had made different decisions at different points in time. I was hooked. I brought it, and I couldn’t put it down.
Nora is disappointed in herself and always believed she could have lived a better life, been a better person, if only she had made the most of the opportunities she had squandered. In the Midnight Library she is able to see the lives she has missed out on.
It’s funny, because Nora is not the most likeable person as a main character in a book, to be honest she comes across as a bit of a loser, and that is because that is how she portrays herself. Her lonely life is one where she is isolated and focuses on the regrets she has for not taking chances.
I started off feeling sorry for her, but as I lived through her other lives where she took different paths, I understand her more, and began rooting for her—hoping she would find a life where she was truely happy.
This is a great piece of story writing, growing from a really interesting concept, but what I loved about this book (apart from my inability to put it down), was all the thinking I did after I had finished. It had me mulling over how little we realise the impact we have on the lives of those around us, and also how often we interpret our relationships with others from our own perspective, especially when we are depressed.
Although this is not truely a Teen/YA book, it is one I believe many older teens would benefit from reading, as it might actually help them understand what some of their friends are dealing with. And I defiantly recommend it for parents, just because it is a great read.
Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle 2) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
So I finished The Midnight Library and moved on to the next book in my kindle, Aurora Burning. This is the second book in the series, I reviewed an Amie Kaufman co-write some time ago, and I have read more of her books in the meantime, including Aurora Rising, the first book in the Aurora Cycle. I loved the book but didn’t get round to reviewing it, and I am not going to make the same mistake with Aurora Burning.
I have been waiting patiently for the second book in the series to come out. The only problem was, in the meantime I had forgotten how much I loved the characters, and how fast paced the actions is, and how you get caught up in the story then you find it is three am on a school night and its only three hours until you have to get up. I curse you Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff.
By far my favourite character in this book is the super brain Zila. She is slowly coming our of her shell and learning to have a sense of humour. Still, Finn’s sarcasm and surprising heroism is quite cool. Then again, super-sexy Scarlett shows there is more to her than meets the eye, and her brother Tyler—if I was a boy I would want to be him, the all round hero. Though, if I think about it, Aurora now has super-powers, and a super-cool boyfriend who adores her in Kal. And Kal, the war machine is a super-being, who wouldn’t want to be him? So many great characters, and every time the chapter changes to a new point of view I want to be that one.
In Aurora Rising a crew of military misfits rescue a girl lost in space, thence across a scary hive mind wanting to take over the galaxy. In this book they are trying to find the weapon Aurora, the girl they rescued, has been told she must use to to save the universe. In the mean time, Kal’s family life starts to get in the way and places them all in peril.
This book is almost non-stop action, but still manages to expand on the characters backstories, and take us through a political minefield that is not as straightforward as it seems. When I finally did finish the book, I was unable to sleep, wanting to know what happens next, and imagining all sorts of scenarios.
I have it now, I want to be Amie Kaufman or Jay Kristoff. I mean who doesn’t want to be a writer who produces mesmerising books? Scfi fans will really enjoy this offering, but so will those who like a little romance, or action adventure books. So many people will like this book it is probably a waste of time my writing a review as you’re probably all read it, and like me are waiting with baited breath for the next book in the series.