Welcome everyone to the very first book tag of the blog! In this yummy tag I’ll talk about five books I’ve read and enjoyed in some way and one that I haven’t finished (yet). I want to thank Chiara from heavenlybookish.be for tagging me! You can read her post over The Cake Flavoured Book Tag, there she gives really good recommendations!
Chocolate – A dark book you loved
I have no doubts about this one, it has to be Battle Royale by Koushun Takami. I’ve been obsessed with this novel since I first heard that The Hunger Games was inspired by it. And even nowadays, three years after reading it, I still remember every part of it and even sometimes I spend a whole hour thinking about it. So I guess I can consider Battle Royale one of my all-time favourites. You can read my review on it here (though it was one of my first reviews so it's a bit random).
Synopsis: A class of junior high school students is taken to a deserted island where, as part of a ruthless authoritarian program, they are provided arms and forced to kill one another until only one survivor is left standing. Criticized as violent exploitation when first published in Japan - where it then proceeded to become a runaway bestseller - Battle Royale is a Lord of the Flies for the 21st century, a potent allegory of what it means to be young and (barely) alive in a dog-eat-dog world.
Vanilla – Favourite light read
This one goes for Wild Bird by Wendelin Van Draanen. This no-more-than-350-pages book is a life-changing experience. It's not the first time I talk about this book on my blog—you can read my review on it and find the other post where I mention it here.
But every time I talk about it, something new pops up in my mind. This time is that, even being a light read—you can read it in one day—, you'll keep thinking about Wren's story days after finishing it, because it's really deep and touching and you'll want to reach your hand out to Wren and hug her every time she falls.
Synopsis: 3:47 a.m. That's when they come for Wren Clemens. She's hustled out of her house and into a waiting car, then a plane, and then taken on a forced march into the desert. This is what happens to kids who've gone so far off the rails, their parents don't know what to do with them anymore. This is wilderness therapy camp.
The Wren who arrives in the Utah desert is angry and bitter, and blaming everyone but herself. But angry can't put up a tent. And bitter won't start a fire. Wren's going to have to admit she needs help if she's going to survive.
In her most incisive and insightful book yet, beloved author Wendelin Van Draanen's offers a remarkable portrait of a girl who took a wrong turn and got lost--but who may be able to find her way back again in the vast, harsh desert.
Red Velvet – A book that gave you mixed emotions
Definitely VOX by Christina Dalcher. This book, while being a really well written and intriguing story, talks about a really serious subject: what would happen if women couldn't speak more than 100 words a day?
It might remind you of The Handmaid's Tale, and so it seems to me, because the premise is pretty alike: men want to be the ones who rule while women stay at home, have children and take care of the house and the family, period. But the writing style changes a lot from Margaret Atwood to Christina Dalcher. Dalcher's style is faster, more contemporary, while Atwood's is more classic, elaborate and a bit slower. But the fact that their styles are different makes the books important and interesting in their own way, which is great.
So I loved the staging and the plot because it's really well thought and written, but when it comes to the idea itself I think it would be a real nightmare to live in a world like that. So I feel love-hate for this book. Also, I haven't written a review yet because I'm thinking about rereading it to absorb the whole story the best way possible.
Synopsis: Set in an America where half the population has been silenced, VOX is the harrowing, unforgettable story of what one woman will do to protect herself and her daughter.
On the day the government decrees that women are no longer allowed to speak more than 100 words daily, Dr. Jean McClellan is in denial—this can't happen here. Not in America. Not to her.
This is just the beginning.
Soon women can no longer hold jobs. Girls are no longer taught to read or write. Females no longer have a voice. Before, the average person spoke sixteen thousand words a day, but now women only have one hundred to make themselves heard.
But this is not the end.
For herself, her daughter, and every woman silenced, Jean will reclaim her voice.
Cheesecake – A book that you’d recommend to everyone
Undoubtedly Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. My all-time favourite book, not only from sci-fi but from any genre out there. This book is a masterpiece, a classic and should be a must-read in every school in the world, which I’m hopeful would help end a lot of clashes and wars.
I have not much to say, because to truly value and understand this book you have to read it. But Card's way to get Ender evolve and change through the book is impressive and makes believe that the whole story really happened at some point of our history.
Synopsis: Andrew "Ender" Wiggin thinks he is playing computer simulated war games; he is, in fact, engaged in something far more desperate. The result of genetic experimentation, Ender may be the military genius Earth desperately needs in a war against an alien enemy seeking to destroy all human life. The only way to find out is to throw Ender into ever harsher training, to chip away and find the diamond inside, or destroy him utterly. Ender Wiggin is six years old when it begins. He will grow up fast.
But Ender is not the only result of the experiment. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway almost as long. Ender's two older siblings, Peter and Valentine, are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. While Peter was too uncontrollably violent, Valentine very nearly lacks the capability for violence altogether. Neither was found suitable for the military's purpose. But they are driven by their jealousy of Ender, and by their inbred drive for power. Peter seeks to control the political process, to become a ruler. Valentine's abilities turn more toward the subtle control of the beliefs of commoner and elite alike, through powerfully convincing essays. Hiding their youth and identities behind the anonymity of the computer networks, these two begin working together to shape the destiny of Earth-an Earth that has no future at all if their brother Ender fails.
Coffee – A book that you started but never finished
With no doubts The Neverending Story by Michael Ende. Yes, for me it’s been a true never-ending story.
My parents gave me this book when I was 6 years old and I started it right after tearing the wrapping paper, what means that I've had this book half-read on my bookshelf for 17 years now. But at some point between my 6-years-old and my today-years-old, my inner self decided to take off the bookmark so when I took it again I didn't know where I left it and had to start it over again. Wise me, huh? Though I don't remember doing it.
Synopsis: Bastian Balthazar Bux is shy, awkward, and certainly not heroic. His only escape is reading books. When Bastian happens upon an old book called The Neverending Story, he's swept into the magical world of Fantastica—so much that he finds he has actually become a character in the story! And when he realizes that this mysteriously enchanted world is in great danger, he also discovers that he has been the one chosen to save it. Can Bastian overcome the barrier between reality and his imagination in order to save Fantastica?
Carrot – A book with a great writing
If you’ve read my last reviews you’ll already know who’s going to get this one. Yes, it’s The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. Her writing is so catching, expressive, emotional, descriptive and palpable. Through the whole book I felt immersed, like I was part of the story, and all because of her beautiful writing. So I couldn't not choose The Goldfinch for this one.
Synopsis: Aged thirteen, Theo Decker, son of a devoted mother and an absent father, miraculously survives an accident that otherwise tears his life apart. Alone and rudderless in New York, he is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Theo is tormented by longing for his mother and down the years clings to the thing that most reminds him of her: a small, strangely captivating painting that ultimately draws him into the criminal underworld.
And that's all! I hope you've liked this first book tag and also that you can find a next read (or even a future-favourite book) in this list! Let me know all your thoughts about this tag on the commentaries section below—if you’ve read any of these books or if you’re planning to read them!
Thanks again Chiara for tagging me, I had so much fun doing this tag! And finally, I’m tagging Elise from the petite punk, Rose from whiterosestories and Liz from lizofwords. Feel free to do it, guys—though I hope you do!