0

Jepp, Who Defied the Stars 

This was a really a tale where it hooked me, with little trouble at all, it did all the work to make me interested in it. Jepp’s story, begins at an inn, slowly moving to the court and eventually finding out who he is. 

And what a set of twist it had, the way almost all of it slowly builds Jepp before revealing more about his life. His background and even who he was. This story slowly went with Jepp, who was a really interesting and good character from the very beginning. His fascination with his identity, which get sidelined because of him entering the court. 

Then, he starts to know more about the court. And at the end, his entire background was within the court itself. Which is a really nice thing, to come full circle and come together. 

As for the two girls that takes up Jepp’s life, Lia and Magdalene are very different. Lia wanted to be free, even if it meant she died. But if she died free, it was even better for her. As for Magdalene, she was an interesting character, with the knowledge and talents which I really like. She is someone who I really can like, and see why Jepp liked her. She isn’t afraid to admit when she’s wrong, but stands firm on the ground when it’s needed. 

I didn’t think that this was historical fiction at first, eventually I really liked it when at the end all of this characters had a part in history. All of them, had a place in history. Some had bad endings, some had better endings. But I was completely fine with the liberties taken, Magdalene deserved better and Jepp was a really good choice. Tycho, being one of the most accurate astrologers and having an artificial nose was interesting. 

And most importantly, was dealing with Jepp who barely left a name in history. The way he would end his story, is like what I would say perfect. It doesn’t botch up history, but nonetheless creates a happy ending which I enjoy. And I nonetheless prefer. 

For all that Jepp suffered through, all that Jepp been through. I enjoyed the fact that Jepp having moments of doubt and moments where he is firm. That he is a master of his one destiny, and that he is what drives it. Rather than the other way around. 

And the writing, it had to be the reason why I liked it in the first place. It managed to grip me, all the while maintaining this style. The way that it seemed to have been from a long time ago. The way it was simple to read without me ever wondering where it was heading. That takes a lot. 

So, I loved this book. The way everything was handled. Surprisingly, I really did. And if you like a book which deals with fate astrology, and uses actual history, then you should check this out. It is the perfect fit for you. 

Rating: 5 out of 5

1

The House Of The Spirits 

It does live up to expectations of a saga. As this story slowly unravels and balances the first person narration and mostly third person narration so incredibly well. The main narrator of the entire story is Esteban, who at times disgust me of the way he thought that Clara was his. And that she should be willing to share everything with him. 

As for Clara, in her own right, she is a strong woman. She would put her foot down and leave him, which she does in this book for her own daughter. The way that she is always so incredibly wise and aware of the world, and how she is portrayed is like a clairvoyant sometimes. Where she doesn’t try to speak. And her abilities really quite magical, and the way it is presented places this book into magical realism. Where sometimes certain events barely have any explanation, and this does pass due to the way Clara appears so incredibly aware. 

As for the family, which they are all rather crazy. Esteban with his obsession with Rosa and became a reason why he married Clara in the first place. Clara with all her abilities yet choosing not to interfere in many of her fates. Blanca, and her eventual life working hard and doing what she likes. All the while giving birth to a daughter. And Jaime and Nicolas, both of which finds their own strange path. Nicolas moving from one point to another without much thought, Jaime and his constant need for helping the poor. 

I really liked how their entire family became part of politics eventually. Such as Esteban running as a conservative, Jaime standing on the opposition side. As for eventually what happens to Alba and her, I would say that another party has come into power and one that is indeed a cruel tyrant. 

As for the story slowly beginning and ending, it all ends with Alba. And this saga has been quite entertaining really. Such as Clara deciding once and for all leaving, even though they still kept up appearances. Blanca and her affair, Jaime and Nicolas where both their paths diverged so incredibly much. And Alba, who grew up in this ridiculous environment.

So, this is a good book. More in the part that it developed characters over the years, and yet still kept their essence in the way that I could still recognize them. All the while spanning years and years with three generations of the family. And well, this books handles it all well. With how bizarre some of them are, and eventually having Esteban realise that he on some level had faulted. And Blanca deciding to let her first love go, after seeing that he was unwilling to be chained to her. 

And the way Alba views the world at the end. I would say that all this took a lot of work and planning, given how each character eventually had their own role to play and their own role to fulfill. And even seeing Esteban begging on his knees was nice indeed, and the way that he simply wants Alba back is really heartwarming too. 

So this is a family saga, and centered about their entire family and lives. And the way that somehow a lot of things eventually come back to them, and a lot of times there aren’t a lot of answers seeing as how Alba changed, and how mysterious she was at the epilogue. So, I would say that this book is more about the family than anything else. And each character was handled well for me, at least within the Trueban family. 

Rating: 4 out of 5′

0

The Joy Luck Club

I have really enjoyed this book, as almost every character had her own story. And well, it was indeed interesting to read really how each ended and began. Also, how much their mothers also influenced them. 

But mostly was how realistic it was to be a woman then in China which was not a good one. And thus makes each story which is narrated, each character here carries a rather big story here, and those back stories are the reason why I also love this story. It really makes each story count and put a lot into the eventual ending. Such as having disagreements, a perfect American woman, a woman who eventually married because of a disaster in her house. 

Then, to a daughter who had so much hopes placed on her to be a genius. A perfect chess genius. I really loved this story for how it was, how each story were so carefully crafted, so detailed that I could feel it really. It just so realistic that my hearts went to them. Though I would have wanted more about the Joy Luck Club, about the main story. It was mostly like reading a back story but barely having any link till the end. 

That is really my only complaint. Otherwise, the characters, the atmosphere, the story is almost perfect. I would say, read this for each character. Where each of them carry a heavy story and a difficult background from the start. 

Rating: 4 out of 5

3

The Wind-up Bird Chronicle

I would say that this is one that took me a long time to read, and I did enjoy every bit of it. Every single page was rather different from what I have read. This book indeed goes through a bizarre journey, with so many twists and turns which I could barely even see and understand. Most importantly, is that it made me enjoy this book a lot more than any other. This bizarre set of characters and plot .Ade me curious as to the work is. 

And for once, I do admit that this is quite a different sort of book. One that explores many philosophies, the possibility of abilities and also a lot of sometimes hard to grasp concepts. But to me, this was a refreshing and original work. With the characters each being rather unique, and the villain in a way not a complete villain. His abilities weren’t really known much until the end, or even explained. But whatever I got to me was enough and even sufficient. The rest, well is up to your imagination. 

It really goes a totally different way, and well made me enjoy reading from a completely different light and even really like this form. I do admit that his style cam be rather different, especially here and towards the end where it does get bizarre. But to me, I really enjoyed it. 

From the slow pace and eventually the disappearances of his wife, to May Kasahara, Malta Kano, Creta Kano, Lieutenant Mamiya, Mr Honda, to even Nutmeg and Cinnamon. They were a strange and bizarre cast, and really piqued my interest. Such as the abilities within here, especially evident in Malta KaNo and Nutmeg, a strange and unexplained abilities, Creta Kano. To the mystery of someone who never speaks but has really high IQ. This is bizarre and well, the right kind for me. 

So, I would say pick this book up if you want something new. If you want to see something else rather than the typical explainable book, this really cannot be explained with still a lot left to interpretation. And the ending, quite open and interesting really. So, to me, the most important piece of advice when it comes to picking up this book. 

Just consider whether you want to be thrown into a really bizarre book, one that really makes you think and wonder about the principle of life, and one that will have you questioning several things later. Such as the two worlds, one where it is crossed over, the other still here. And one where there are going to have unexplained abilities and mysteries which are barely even categorized. 

Rating: 5 out of 5

0

To Kill A Mockingbird

For a long time, I have hoped to set my hands on this story. And now that I have it, it doesn’t disappoint at all. This is truly a tale of blacks and whites, in the 1930s, and about a young girl. 

Though, I do think that the black issue here is more related to how her father chose to represent someone. And he argued for him in almost any way. But this is an America which is still discriminating against blacks, and I do think that Jean Louise makes a good narrator. As a child, she makes everything so clear and simple. Otherwise, I think that the language would have went over my head a long time ago. 

And to me, the ending was a good one. One which was open, and in a sense an ironic ending for Mr Ewell. Nonetheless, it did drag a little in the beginning but settled into the main focus. Where her father chooses to defend a black man, one which probably would have gotten none just because of his skin colour. And an America, which is almost as dark as the one in another novel. 

Perhaps, it doesn’t hit the characters as hard as in other books. But Jean Louise was interesting and well she told the story by just being a detached narrator and having bits and pieces of her life. But my most favourite quotes would be during the time where her father represented the man, and argued for him through cross examination. And whatever end that befell the man, it wasn’t a happy one. Even to my surprise. 

But to me, it was a clear indication of the discrimination against blacks in those times. Their lives were worthless, they had little rights, and they were lowly and always suspected. To me, this is a very dark them in history. And the reality here is no less grim, and that her father continues to fight in it. It had been what that made be care for her father, a lot more than any other. 

Overall, this is what a literary masterpiece should be to me. It isn’t about the writing, but about the themes, the life and the message it conveys. And also, an accurate portrayal should it be set in any part of history. 

Rating: 5 out of 5

2

The Kingdom Of Little Wounds 


I would say that writing here is beautiful. Even though I mostly had to interpret what Midi said, it’s just her dialect which makes it hard to understand. But other than that, I like this book.  

For once, it’s not completely about romance either way. The small maneuvers and schemes deployed upon the Royal family here, and the main characters are mostly the ones who end up becoming participants in it. 

Well, court intrigue is just my thing. And I guess from the beginning the character which clicked with me the most had been Ava, Midi’s perspective had been well done, but just hard for me to read. And in the beginning it is an accident which lands her in jail, and starts of her entire career at trying to get better. 

I really understood her and cared for her, despite the writing being gorgeous, it was also the most difficult thing to read. It took me many days just to read it continuously and slowly, which is why this book isn’t for the patient. A lot comes from trying to read between the lines here. 

And the real antagonist here is interesting, even though I really want to know what made him as such. He has a hihe presence, before his death had been quite interesting as he was done in by the main characters. 

And it doesn’t really shy away from having some queer themes, the king is in love with a man here. And Isabella might also be one as well. 

The plot moves slowly, which is usual of historical fiction and sometimes too slow for my taste and too distant too. But nonetheless, I enjoyed this book for its characters, themes and most importantly: the writing 

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 

0

Empress 


This book took me a lot of time to read. Mainly because of the depth of it, and how almost every sentence was meant to be deep and dramatic. I really enjoyed a literary novel despite it being the first time I have written this. 

Being an account of the first and only woman Emperor of China, I really enjoyed it such as all the lush and beautiful details. Or even the account of Wu’s life and a different portrait of her than the usual. And managing to keep an account of all the historical details and accuracy. 

I didn’t really think Wu Zetian caused the dynasty to fall, but rather made it even more successful than before. And that I did connect with her on this level as someone that had to do what she needed. Such as her many decisions they were in the name of the dynasty and the people, and she was truly a good sovereign. Even if she has questionable decisions, mistakes but I feel as though Heavenlight is a more rounded person. 

She has her faults and her strengths. And that she makes decisions that can hurt. As for her various relationships and lovers, I did rather believed it so. That Emperor Eternal Ancestor didn’t have her serve Jim sexually but only Emperor Lordly Forbearer or Little Phoenix. I rather liked this accurate portrayal of her that she wasn’t some perfect Mary Sue*cough cough Empress of China* but rather a Machiavellian and she felt so. 

She was forced to do many terrible things, but neither did she forget it. I always felt as though that she was forced to and felt remorseful but never overly so. And all her actions were quite justified given what she was facing and what she needed to do. And her situation as well. 

Given this is based on one of the most controversial historical figure in China, her grave till this day has no words engraved on it. But I enjoyed the portrayal that she was not as bad as some painted her to be but never as pure or innocent either. 

The best part was actually the ending, where she looked on as a spirit and observing what happens after. Be it the account of the Tang Dynasty to even later dynasties. And that she made the Tang one of the mosf prosperous dynasties in China and when it was at its peak. Given what I know, I really don’t know another time where it was a prosperous in the Tang and unsure how to compare it to the so-called best times to live(rule of Wen and Jing of Han) but I loved this account and story thay was told. 

I would definitely recommend this if you enjoy a story that has a lot of history and even historical accuracy. And a very poetic and literary writing style. 

Rating: 5 out of 5