Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

This is the third time I’ve tried to write a review for this book. It’s a hard thing to do when you can’t believe it’s already over. You tend to go into denial if you hate endings like I do.

Synopsis

Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair-bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.

Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.

From Goodreads

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Me Before You published by Penguin Books 2015

Me Before You was, fortunately, the book I chose to read in order to take a (much needed) break from fantasy. What I wasn’t really expecting was to get the same amount of magic from a love story that you can get from a fantasy book.

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Tomb Raider: The Ten Thousand Immortals by Dan Abnett & Nik Vincent

“She was back on the island. On Yamatai. A hellish storm raged all around her.”

The Ten Thousand Immortals is a Tomb Raider novel released in 2014, written by Dan Abnett and Nik Vincent. It tells the story of Lara Croft coping with her life after returning from the island of Yamatai. The novel takes place right after the events of Tomb Raider (2013) and before the new Tomb Raider Comic Series.

Synopsis

Back in her London flat Lara and Sam try to get back to their old life. However, for Sam this proves to be too difficult. When a call from the hospital reaches Lara, she is informed that her friend has suffered an overdose of a substance, allegedly trying to end her own life. Sam has left a goodbye letter addressed to Lara in which she explain, that it’s all too much for her to deal with and that she believes that she cannot be saved from Himiko, the Shaman Sun Queen of Yamatai.

Desperate for a solution, Lara searches for anything that could help her. A wisp of hope arising from a myth gives Lara purpose: the story of an ancient and mysterious artifact that could heal her friend.

No matter how thin the trail may be at times, Lara is willing to go wherever she must to find something that will help her friend. The hunt drives Lara across Europe, in a voyage through a twisted web of conspiracy, suspicious contracts, and life-or-death intrigue, as she seeks salvation for her friend and the truth behind the legendary talisman.

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The Ten Thousand Immortals by DK Publishing (2014)

As expected from a Tomb Raider novel, we are offered an invitation into the world of archaeology, history and mythology. This is a fast paced book with plenty of action to go around. One of the things that I really enjoyed about it was getting to know more about Lara’s character. The reader sees through her eyes, knows how she thinks and acts in normal circumstances (like taking a train/subway or simply walking around the streets of London) as well as when she’s under stress or in danger.

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Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt & Alison McGhee

“Where do you go when you die? Maybe you turn into wind. Maybe you turn into stars. Maybe you turn into a firefly and light up the night.”

Synopsis

Jules and her older sister Sylvie are very close and enjoy living in their rural Vermont property with their father. They like spending time with Sam, their neighbour, who is the best friend of both girls and dreams of one day spotting a catamount in the nearby woods. Although the siblings are separated only by a year, Jules remembers very little of their mother who died when they were young.

One day Sylvie goes missing, and as Jules suffers, a fox cub is born – a shadow fox, spirit and animal in one. From the minute the cub opens her eyes, she senses something very wrong. Someone—Jules.

Who is this Jules? Who is this Sylvie she cries out for? And why does the air still prickle with something unsettled? As that dark unknown grows, the fates of the girl Jules and the fox Senna, laced together with wishes and shadowy ties, are about to collide.

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“Maybe a Fox” published by Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books (2016)

This book is an example of how a children’s book can still be read and enjoyed when you’re an adult. It’s about losing someone and how the ones left behind should deal with that kind of loss. It’s about understanding the importance of life itself. It has depth and complexities I think children aren’t capable of grasping at their age (fortunately for them).

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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

“Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ’em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”

What a wonderful book.

That’s what I thought when I finished this famous work. I confess that I was afraid I would think of it as yet another overrated classic everyone pretends to like but now I am so happy I was completely wrong about it.

 Synopsis

A lawyer’s advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee’s classic novel – a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with exuberant humour the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South of the thirties. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina of one man’s struggle for justice. But the weight of history will only tolerate so much.

From Goodreads

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To Kill a Mockingbird 50th Anniversary Edition published by Cornerstone

Because it is written in a child’s perspective it is moving and endearing, which I think wouldn’t happen if it was an adult telling the same story. We watch Jean-Louise Finch grow up and the world around her – a world which is little more than a small town – change as fast as mean people can spread their wickedness to others. What makes it even more special is the ever-present honesty: it curls up in every word with such force I’m lead to think it would turn even the most devious person into an honourable one. Harper Lee is able to write her protagonist’s thoughts in such a way that every injustice stabs at your chest as if it was happening to you; her powerlessness becomes your own. Many writers can do this but not many can do it even when their readers are being bothered by noisy people on the train and take almost two months to read their damn book.
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Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare

As readers, we risk being swallowed up by many worlds. This is, like all of Cassandra Clare’s worlds always are, a sad and tremendously beautiful one.

Synopsis

1878, London. Tessa Gray discovers the city’s supernatural underworld whilst looking for her missing brother. With the help of Shadowhunters – the demon-slayers who will turn her life upside down – she will understand how special she is. She finds herself in a world of vampires, demons, warlocks, and trouble. With her two companions Jem and Will, she unravels the cruel plan of the Pandemonium Club and must fight it by their side before it’s too late. One battle may change the course of history forever.

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“Clockwork Angel” published by Simon & Schuster (2010)

Clockwork Angel is the first book of The Infernal Devices trilogy by Cassandra Clare. It explores the Shadowhunters world in a way that The Mortal Instruments doesn’t, with some familiar characters but in a different setting and time zone.

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