Sunday, August 30, 2009

Twilight Series

Originally posted on my blog Alucard's Rose on Dec. 22 2008

I decided to wait til I had read all the books in the series before doing a review. That was only because I had read them all one right after the other this last week.

I did however do separate reviews for Chapters Community as I finished each book, so here one by one is what I had to say about them on that profile.


It's Pride and Prejudice with vampires.

It was a hard time for me to get into this novel. It wasn't until the rival clan was introduced that it seemed to get interesting for me. And it was more then the nod to Jane Austen near the beginning of the story that had a continued underline throughout ; that never let me stop thinking of Edward as Darcy.

Granted the film was playing more on the Romeo and Juliet idea, but this is straight up Austen style love affairs.
I was hoping through the last few chapters that the characters of Alice and Jasper would be expanded on, but they weren't.

I hope the next one in the saga will be better.


I have to say I was pleasantly surprised with this one. The fact it focuses on the werewolf story line was a nice turn, and it didn't seem as depressing as Twilight had. Maybe you just don't notice the rain as much in this one?
The idea that life continues after a heartbreak has always been a favourite theme of mine in stories, and the connection to the secondary characters from the first book made this a little fleshier a plot.
The only real upsetting factor for me was how the character of Laurent was handled. I would have written his part very differently myself. And the seen in Italy with the coven reminded me very much of Armand from the Vampire Chronicles.
Overall I found New Moon to be a much better read then Twilight.


I have to admit, I am shocked that I am liking this series.
I was very skeptical with it being geared for teens but books two and three have had me glued. I read Eclipse in a day and a half.
I liked this one for the simple fact it started to unravel the idea of first love. I have never been one for the sappy sweet idea of Romeo and Juliet and was always more interested in the "what if" factor of second love.
Given that Eclipse moves a lot slower but a lot deeper then Twilight or New Moon, you don't feel anything but anxious for the families of Bella, Edward and Jacob.
With insight into a few of the minor characters you are given a balance between the daydreams of a teenager in love and the grown up responses to that love.
The question remains is it right to ask so much of love ?


Long, very very long.
There has been one book ever in the past to may me cry and that was Vampire Lestat by Anne Rice. Well, the last two chapters of Breaking Dawn made me cry.
That said, a nice closing to the entire Twilight series.
The last half of this story is filled with more dialog then needed, getting every point of view from the many new characters added in this novel. Unlike the last two novels, the shift is once again back on Bella and the Cullen Family. Another full circle is found with reference to real folklore and myths that the author nods to in Twilight.
The subplot in this one seems to run with the theme of myth and the power a myth can hold.

What are my feelings about this set of books? It's refreshing to see a story that collectively is 2444pages that does not feel like it because you are so captivated by the weaving web between the 3 main characters. This is a love story more then anything else, but it does edge on the side of a western in the sense that there is always a showdown at noon. Edgy and witty, even when it was a depressing teen-us against -them love story that does what alot of the books in both vampire and werewolf genres are failing to do right now; which is be tempting without being explicit. Stephenie Meyer did what I didn't think anyone in the vampire genre could or wanted to do anymore, deliver a good solid vampire story without having to resort to cheap sexual ploys.
I haven't rated anything in a long while but I give Twilight Saga a 8out of 10 fangs.

Vampires the Occult Truth by Konstantinos

This book was first released in the mid 1990's, but has since been re-printed, so don't let the cover art fool you into thinking this is fluff because it is not.
A non-fictional look at the world of vampires, this volume combines historical case studies with modern studies on energy use and manipulation.
A great guide through some theories linked to astral projection and how much of a threat that can be for some people.
The last half of the book focuses mostly on the psi vamp and with good reason.
Anyone interested in psi vampirism, mythology, psychology, astral projection should enjoy this volume, but if you are looking for something in the "gothic subculture" then look somewhere else.

Originally posted on my blog Alucard's Rose on June 15 2008

Monday, August 24, 2009

Shade by David Darke

This is one that surprised me. It is about a group of fans who are going to a book convention for a series of vampire novels. It sort of plays off of the popularity that vampires had in the 1990's as well as the role playing vampire games. The theme of this book is blurring the lines of what is real and what is not.
We meet Shade. She is a very sexy writer of vampire novels, who just happens to be a very sexy vampire. Her books lure and seduce her victims and then she finds them all over the world by using mirrors.
I liked this book because it took a fresh look at the vampire, not just as a horror story, not just as an erotic story, but as a media persona all it's own.

Originally posted on my vampire blog Alucard's Rose on July 1 2007

Mansfield Park

This is my next challenge in the Jane Austen Challenge , my first post is here
This is number one on my list.
Where to start!
This challenge was a comparative of Mansfield Park in book and movie form. I have to say right off, that it took me 2 full months to get through the novel. The copy I have, has tiny print and a 400 page count. Normally, I can zip through a book that size in about a week, but this was just not the case.
I love the 1999/2000 movie version with Francis O'Conner.

And I realize that; that movie adaptation mixes some of Jane Austen's real life with the character of Fanny Price, and makes the Uncle out to be a totally bad character. But it still has something to it that endears it to me.

I found the 2007 version with Billy Pipper to be dull and lifeless. To me, the actress played Fanny Price too scared, too zombie like. I did like that they reframed the Uncle into more a caring character. Though the Aunt Norris in this version I found to be hinting at an affair between herself and the Uncle Bertram.

The first film, brings in the character of a younger sister, which in the book is Susan. But leaves out the brother William.
The second film, brings in William, but leaves out Susan.

In the movie Jane Austen Book Club, when they get to the topic of Mansfield Park, the character Grigg brings up the fact that Fanny and Edmund are first cousins by comparing them to Star Wars characters, and asks if this incest bothered anyone else.
I think that is a good point. When reading this novel, or seeing the movie for the first time, that subplot of Fanny and Edmund falling in love is never looked at fully in that regard. It is hinted at in the beginning of both book and film as a fear of the Uncle's but dismissed. And by the end of the story you are left thinking "but your cousins" when everyone else seems to find it a fitting thing for Fanny and Edmund to marry.

I found this to be such a hard read because I did not find a single character I really liked. They seemed too stiff. The scenes that covered the play near the beginning went on too long taking up many chapters to revile nothing of solid importance.
When chatting in a few Jane Austen book groups, and telling of my dislike for most this story, I found I was not the only one who preferred the movie to the book. It's difficult for me to understand how this novel was so prized when it came out 200 years ago, unless for it's preaching of virtues, and it's shock value at the time of its incest subplot?

I come away from this book feeling sorry for Mr. Rushworth and longing for letters from people. Otherwise, I have to say, Mr. Crawford feels like an unfinished character.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Cause I didn't have enough to read

I started a book club for my horror site Disturbia.
Our first selection is Stephen King's The Shining.

So far so good. Stephen King seems to bring out the best in real horror fans. Not as many people signed up for the book group as I had hoped but it looks promising.

I will have my review on here once I am done reading.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Julie and Juila Book review

I picked this up Sunday night, and did not stop reading until just after 1 am this morning.

This is a semi-autobiography about a woman going through a life crisis. She's been told she may never have kids, she is unsatisfied in her job, and she just moved. She is coming unglued and finds the only thing that is keeping her together is cooking.

Julie Powell became an internet hit when it was still a new idea to blog. It ended up changing her life. What she blogged about was the year long challenge she set for herself to cook all the recipes in the first volume of Julia Childs most impressive book, Mastering the Art of French Cooking. This earned Powell her first book deal and a new chance to find herself.

Her second book is due this winter and I am looking forward to seeing what she has to offer this time around.