Posts by: Li

Review: The Farseer Trilogy

Posted 5 July, 2009 by Li in Books / 0 Comments

It’s been a while since I’ve done a bit of reviewing, haven’t I? I’ll likely post another one of those massive book review catch-ups, but in the meantime, here’s a review of the latest books I’ve read:

The Farseer Trilogy
By Robin Hobb

The Farseer trilogy consists of three books: Assassin’s Apprentice, Royal Assassin and Assassin’s Quest. It follows the story of FitzChivalry Farseer, bastard son of Prince Chivalry in the Six Duchies Kingdom as he navigates through royal plots and intrigue, threats from the coasts by Sea Raiders and growing up into his own person despite of the baggage of being a bastard son. He is secretly trained to be an assassin to the Crown, thus complicating his life but also bringing him into the fold in a way that his status as a bastard could not.

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Meme: Another Book Meme

Posted 3 July, 2009 by Li in Meme / 1 Comment

Snagged also from book_memes 🙂

What’s the oldest book you own?
In terms of publication, I have a copy of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare dating back to 1924. In terms of the oldest book that I’ve purchased, that may be my Snoopy comics (in graphic novel format) from when I was 10, lol.

What’s the newest book you own?
In terms of publication…probably Seth Grahame-Smith’s Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. In terms of purchase, Ted Bell’s Tsar 🙂

Name a book that you like to have easily accessible?
Oh gosh, I don’t know…everything’s within reach, I guess, LOL

Name a book that you like to have easily noticeable (for reasons of pretension or ’cause it’s pretty)?
More like my shelf filled with books on Russian history and politics xD Makes me look hardcore that way (which, in a way, my studies are)

What’s the nicest book or set of books that you own?
I have these small hardcovers of most of Jane Austen’s works, a hard cover of Russian fairy tales with pretty Russian-style illustrations and my black-cover LOTR boxset (even though they’re not hardcover).

What’s the most battered, most loved book that you own?
Hmm, all my books are actually in good condition so I dunno…

Have you encountered a book that felt especially nice to hold?
Probably the hardcovers, lol.

Do you arrange books by author, title, genre, vibe, colour or not at all?
These days I arrange them by height, really; my bookshelves are crammed, I’m literally squeezing books in wherever there’s space now xD

Do library / borrowed books feel as nice as books you own?

What format of book do you most like holding? (ie, paperback, hardback, trade paperback, graphic novel…)
Paperback and trade paperback; they’re easy to hold especially when you’re lying down.

Do you have any hidden books?
My copy of Twilight (which I bought out of pure curiosity last year; I kept on hearing about it so I decided to find out what all the hype is about) is hidden behind some of my textbooks on my bottom shelf xD

What books would you keep in your (real or hypothetical) spare room for guests to read?
Good question…probably something related to Russian history, like the Chronicles maybe, or probably a classic like Dickens or Austen or something 🙂

Meme: Books I Read From January – June 2009

Posted 3 July, 2009 by Li in Meme / 0 Comments

Snagged off book_memes: “Six months of 2009 are already over, so methinks it’s time for a halfway mark book meme. These questions all apply to books that you’ve read in 2009.”

01. Name a book that you liked that was at least twenty years old.
There’s a number of books I’ve read already that are at least, if not older than, twenty years old but here’s one: The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro

02. Name a book that you liked that was at least ten years old.
The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

03. Name a book that gave you hope for the future.
Good question, I’m not entirely sure from my list *blushes*

04. Name a book about the past that you believe has important lessons in it.
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde does lay out quite a debate on a whole range of topics: philosophy, aesthetics, morality and the price you pay for achieving certain things (in this case, Dorian Gray’s price for achieving eternal youth).

05. Name a book that taught you something.
People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks taught me a bit about book conservation and the realities of war and life in certain periods of history.

06. Name a book with a character who really stood out.
Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens. Mr. Eugene Rayburn in particular stood out for me in this novel, he’s quite an interesting and amusing character.

07. Name a book that was a re-read that you really enjoyed.
Persuasion by Jane Austen. I absolutely love this novel to bits.

08. Name a book that made you cry.
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak had me pretty choked up towards the end. Although certain events were already foreshadowed throughout the novel, I couldn’t help feeling all torn up at the end when it did happen. 🙁

09. Name a book that you disliked.
God’s Spy by Juan Gomez-Jurado. The premise was interesting but when I was reading it…OMG, there was not a single character I rooted for or sympathized, regardless of their dark pasts and whatnot. 🙁

10. Name a book that you would buy for everyone you know.
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. If you haven’t read it, you should. Zafon captured something in this novel that’s really beyond words for me—there’s just this atmosphere when reading this book that really captivated my attention. I cannot recommend it enough.

11. What were your favourite books of January-June 2009?
Don’t want to make this list go on and on so I’ll just stick to the fiction books I’ve enjoyed, lol:

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Elantris by Brandon Sanderson
The Spanish Bow by Andromeda Romano-Lax
A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka
Hunting and Gathering by Anna Gavalda
Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens

Meme: Teaser Tuesdays

Posted 30 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 2 Comments

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
– Grab your current read
– Open to a random page
– Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
– Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Should Be Reading

My teaser for this week: “‘And my father preached a whole set of sermons on the occasion; one set in the mornings, all about David and Goliath, to spirit up the people to fighting with spades and bricks, if need were; and the other set in the afternoons, proving that Napoleon (that was another name for Bony, as we used to call him) was all the same as an Apollyon and Abaddon.” – p. 73, Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell.

My teaser’s a bit late because I finished Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities and Robert Harris’s Archangel and I wasn’t sure what to read next. Decided early this afternoon to go with a classic 🙂

Meme: Musing Mondays

Posted 29 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 1 Comment

I missed last Monday’s because I was busy so I’m doing this a bit early this time, lol:

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about mid-year reading…

Now that we’ve come to the middle of the year, what do you think of your 2009 reading so far? Read anything interesting that you’d like to share? Any outstanding favourites?

Just One More Page

I think my reading list has been pretty good so far, as of today I’ve read a total of 62 books this year (partly as a result of my constant-reading mode last month after exams, lol). The books I’ve read so far have been interesting and some have been pretty different from what I’m used to reading. I’ve managed to get around to reading the books that I’ve been meaning to read for some time (i.e. Catch-22, the remainder of the Abhorsen trilogy, etc.) and discovered some amazing novels along the way (i.e. The Spanish Bow, Elantris, The Shadow of the Wind, etc.). Outstanding favourites that I’d like to share, (to roll the two questions into one, hehehe)…

  • Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind
  • Federico Garcia Lorca’s Selected Verse (collection of poetry)
  • Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief
  • Brandon Sanderson’s Elantris
  • Andromeda Romano-Lax’s The Spanish Bow
  • Anna Gavalda’s Hunting and Gathering (I prefer the original title though,Ensemble C’est Tout)