The Little Prince By Antonie De Saint – Exupery | Book Review

the little prince book review

GENRE: PARABLE/FABLE/CHILDREN’S
PAGE COUNT: 106 PAGES

“The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or touched, they are felt with the heart.”

Book Synopsis:

Moral allegory and spiritual autobiography, The Little Prince is the most translated book in the French language. With a timeless charm it tells the story of a little boy who leaves the safety of his own tiny planet to travel the universe, learning the vagaries of adult behaviour through a series of extraordinary encounters. His personal odyssey culminates in a voyage to Earth and further adventures.

They say the loveliest things come in small packages, and that is especially true of this book. Antonie De Saint writes a book that has the unique magic of being able to be read by all ages, and each time it’s read have a different message taken away from within it’s pages.

“Grown-ups never understand anything about themselves and it’s rather tedious for children to have to explain thing to them time and time again”

The Little Prince is a charming story that takes the reader across the universe. Along the way meeting the inhabitants of several planets who make the reader think about their values and question what it truly means to be an adult. While meeting these characters you realise as we grow up we can loose our childlike sense of wonder.

“All grown-ups were once children… but only few of them remember it.”

The adventures the characters encounter throughout the book will keep young readers enthralled and older readers evaluating their principles. The book seems particularly important when thinking about what we are teaching kids in school today. I was reminded throughout the book that children are being increasingly discouraged to spend time on creative studies. Schools holding the importance of maths and the sciences in high regard, with little care of the creative studies. Not that I believe there is anything wrong with those areas of study, I simply worry kids will miss out on areas that will encourage creative thoughts and freedoms.

“You’re beautiful, but you’re empty. No one could die for you.”

Personally I took away from the story the vast gap between how we think when we are younger verse how we think when we reach mature age, and how perhaps we should keep more of the naivety of the thinking of our youth.

If you have yet to pick up the Little Prince please do! And let me know what message you took away from it! Below are some quotes that had a particular impact on me…

“I admire you, but why should that mean so much to you?”

“I am who I am and I have the need to be.”

“But the conceited man did not hear him. Conceited people never hear anything but praise.”

“And when your sorrow is comforted (time soothes all sorrows) you will be content that you have known me. You will always be my friend. You will want to laugh with me. And you will sometimes open your window, so, for that pleasure… And your friends will be properly astonished to see you laughing as you look up at the sky! Then you will say to them, “Yes, the stars always makes me laugh!” And they will think you are crazy.”

RATING:★★★★☆

Gemina By Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff | Book Review 

Gemina book review

GENRE: SCI FI/YA
PAGE COUNT: 659 PAGES
“Patience and Silence had one beautiful daughter. And her name was Vengeance.” 

Book Synopsis

Moving to a space station at the edge of the galaxy was always going to be the death of Hanna’s social life. Nobody said it might actually get her killed.

The sci-fi saga that began with the breakout bestseller Illuminae continues on board the Jump Station Heimdall, where two new characters will confront the next wave of the BeiTech assault.

Hanna is the station captain’s pampered daughter; Nik the reluctant member of a notorious crime family. But while the pair are struggling with the realities of life aboard the galaxy’s most boring space station, little do they know that Kady Grant and the Hypatia are headed right toward Heimdall, carrying news of the Kerenza invasion.

When an elite BeiTech strike team invades the station, Hanna and Nik are thrown together to defend their home.

Oft! My Emotions! Kaufman and Kristoff have done it again. A sequel that is just as enthralling, poetic and gut wrenching as the first! I’m so shook after finishing this book. It’s very rare these days that a sequel can hold a candle to the first book in a series, let alone have it be just as brilliant. 

It is clear to me that both of these authors excel in creating unique and compelling characters that the reader will find impossible not to fall in love with.

“And now, born from the ashes, she’s a warrior in bloodied black.” 

Hanna Donnelly is nothing short of completely badass. She is intelligent, charming and could absolutely kick your ass. Hanna is easily just as endearing a character as her counterpart from the first book, Kady. However the authors have managed to make her, her own individual so you don’t feel like you are reading book with the same female lead. Though this one is as equally kickass as the first. 

“You might get only one shot. So shoot. You know who said that?”

The rifle clatters to the bloody floor.

“Hanna FUCKING Donnelly. That’s who.”

Gemina owes it’s brilliance to the fact that it keeps all the elements that people loved from the previous book, the witty characters, brutality of events juxtaposed with poetic prose, the rare format the story is told in (classified documents, censored emails, interviews, and others) and adds new elements which makes it stand out as it’s own story. I also particularly enjoyed finding references to the characters of the first book throughout Gemina.

“This tiny moment. In between the time you decide to pull a trigger and the time death arrives. There’s just you and it and everything you’re about to take away. It’s too big. It goes forever.”

Nik Malikov is another character you’d be hard pressed not to enjoy. He certainly hasn’t had an easy life, yet he is completely charming, cheeky and entirely resourceful. His character stands out for me as he’s very different to anyone we have seen in the series so far. The House of Knives storyline is another great part of the story. It demonstrates one of my favourite things about this series, the multiple interlocking stories and surprises that could have entire books of their own. 

“It’s not about what I say, right? It’s what I do that matters here.” 

Kaufman and Kristoff  have done a wonderful job of creating the stereotypical sweet-as-pie heartthrob character Jackson Merrick. Think Stefan Salvatore, Edward Cullen. For this reason I’m not that drawn to his character.. I’m never team the cookie cutter good guy. Maybe that says something about me. For this reason, in this particular love triangle, I’m defiantly team Malikov. 

I can’t say too much about the plot as I don’t want this review to have any spoilers, so I’ll just say If you haven’t started your journey into the Illuminae Files you need to start now. Seriously, what are you doing right now? Run to your nearest bookstore now!

 

 

“Her eyes shining with the light of it. 

Beneath, between, beyond.

Along the endless circle.

Down the ceaseless spiral.

And waiting for her on the other side? 

Just like he promised.

“A whole sky of different stars.”

RATING:

★★★★★

A Monster Calls By Patrick Ness | Book Review

A Monster Calls By Patrick Ness Book Review

GENRE: FANTASY/HORROR

PAGE COUNT: 226 PAGES

“Stories are the wildest things of all, stories chase and bite and hunt”

An unflinching, darkly funny, and deeply moving story of a boy, his seriously ill mother, and an unexpected monstrous visitor. 

At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting – he’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth.

Okay so I know I’m a bit late on this one, but I’m so thankful that a reading challenge pushed it to the top of my to be read list. Let me start by saying everything people say about this book is true. It’s beautiful, tragic and utterly moving.

“So come and get me then”

Connor O’Malley is a kid that shines with the weight of the world on his shoulders, and is completely easy to fall in love with. As you go through the complex journey with him, his story will pull at your heartstrings and his immense strength will bring you to tears.

“Stories of how I toppled enemies, Stories of how I slew dragons”

The Monster reminds me of a mix between the riddler, the boogie man and the BFG. Somehow, it works perfectly. The character is so interesting that I want another book dedicated solely to him. After finishing the book I’m left with a sense of intrigue at the mysterious entity of the character. The dynamic of Connor of The Monster is also a joy to read. 

“ I have come to get you, Connor O’Malley”

“Stories are important, they can be more important then anything. If they carry the truth” 

This is the first book I have read buy Ness and it certainly wont be the last, the prose in the book is effortless and poetic. Each page hits you right in the gut with it’s elegant beauty and dark humour. Ness also manages to fill the book with life lessons, from the monster teaching Connor to Connor learning on his own. This is a book that will make you think, when you finish I guarantee you will be reflecting on it for days after finishing it. It’s a short book with a big impact.

I have once again found a book that was impossible to put down. Please please treat yourself to this read, just don’t blame me if you don’t have tissues near by.

“You do not write your life with words, you write it with actions”

RATING:
★★★★★

I’ll Be Gone In the Dark By Michelle McNamara | Book Review

i'll be gone in the dark review

GENRE: TRUE CRIME

PAGE COUNT: 328 PAGES

BOOK SYNOPSIS

A masterful true crime account of the Golden State Killer—the elusive serial rapist turned murderer who terrorized California for over a decade—from Michelle McNamara, the gifted journalist who died tragically while investigating the case.

“You’ll be silent forever, and I’ll be gone in the dark.”

For more than ten years, a mysterious and violent predator committed fifty sexual assaults in Northern California before moving south, where he perpetrated ten sadistic murders. Then he disappeared, eluding capture by multiple police forces and some of the best detectives in the area.

 

“Movies don’t capture the effect of the real thing. It’s impossible to reproduce in a studio. Conversations stop. Heads jerk. Eardrums pound with dread. For nothing signals terror like a teenage girl’s wild, unrestrained scream in the night”

I don’t think words can accurately describe how I felt reading Michelle McNamara’s brilliant work of True Crime. If I possessed the talent for prose Michelle did perhaps I could.

I’ll Be Gone In the Dark is one of the most unique pieces of True Crime I have ever read. All of the trademarks are there, of course, the meticulous research, the evidence, the writers own theories and interviews with detectives and internet sleuths. However unique to this story is the hauntingly beautiful narrative prose and Michelle’s persona perfectly entwined in the story. Paul Holes phrases it best in the book;

“The ability to learn the case, have insights that many do not have the aptitude for, the persistence, and the fun and engaging personality all wrapped up in one person was amazing”

As a reader, you can’t help but be painfully aware throughout the novel that this wonderful human was taken from the world to soon. I have hope that all her painstaking work and obsession with finding the responsible suspect will be rewarded after a reader reads this book and, like Michelle utilizes their own skills playing detective. Finally fitting the pieces together and solving the case she dedicated much of her life trying to figure out.

“We will not stop until we get his name, we’ll be playing detective as well”

The book is as one expects, completely riveting. I made the mistake of starting it during the process of moving and working and ended up reading it into the wee hours of the morn. With all my lights on and doors locked of course. She has a way with prose that is so visual, I was often left with chills up my spine and a scream caught in my throat. As someone who has read a lot of True Crime, I can say nothing has yet left me quite as shook to my core as this book.

Even if you aren’t a True Crime reader I implore you to read this book. It’s a window into the beautiful person that was Michelle, and an intimate view into the obsession that kept her up at night.

I had to read the last chapter several times the “Letter to an old man” she wrote has an immense impact and I can only imagine what the Golden State Killer felt if he has read it. I hope he has, and I hope like so many of his victims, He is afraid.

“Open the door. Show us your face.

Walk into the light”

RATING:
★★★★★

I think it’s also very important to highlight we should all trust our gut instinct. If you see something suspicious that doesn’t seem right, call 000/911. Worst case they check it out and it’s nothing, but you could be ultimately saving someone’s life.

Illuminae By Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff | Review

Illuminae By Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff | Review

GENRE: Science Fiction/YA

PAGE COUNT: 599 PAGES

“You have me. Until every last star in the galaxy dies. 

You have me.

Book Synopsis

The year is 2575, and two rival mega-corporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, exes Kady and Ezra – who are barely even talking to each other – are forced to fight their way onto the evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit. 

But the warship is the least of their problems. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results. The fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what the hell is going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again. 

I have been hearing about this book for a while now, people are very, very passionate about this series and after reading it last night I completely understand. Illuminae is Starwars meets The Walking Dead meets 2001: A Space Odyssey.  It’s also a super fun read, which is impressive, considering the complete emotional shitstorm you endure over the course of its 599 pages.

The book is told via various interviews, recovered documents, IM Chats and more. The style makes the book a stand out for me as I’ve never read anything like it before. It’s visually stunning as well- the artwork is truly transformative in this novel. The formatting makes the book an absolute page-turner, that makes me feel like a space detective. Always a plus.

 

While reading you question all of the details present and are aware that some may be missing. More importantly, have things been left out intentionally? The book is like a puzzle the reader can interpret as they wish. I will be rereading this in the future to pick up on whatever I missed. I believe a great book should be readable multiple times with the reader still discovering points they missed the first read. Illuminae nails this perfectly.

Aside from the writing style the story is completely heart breaking and enthralling, and superbly character driven.

“I am frequently underestimated, I think it’s because I’m short”

-Kady Grant

Our main character is a classic everyman hero, completely relatable, bitingly sarcastic and charmingly youthful. In what can only be described as the literal worst day a person can have, she remains strong, and fights till the very end. If you are looking for a seriously kick ass female empowering character, you have found her. Kady has empowerment in spades.  She also happens to be an amazing hacker, you could say it’s her superpower. This talent sets her out as a unique kind of hero and I found her very relatable and was cheering her on from my reading nook throughout her journey.

“Let’s try really, really hard not to die”

“He presses the triggers. And like roses in his hands, death blooms.”

Ezra Mason is the modern day Patrick Verona (10 Things I hate about you), seriously, he gave me major Health Ledger vibes throughout the book. He brought a lot of the comedy and lighthearted moments in the novel and is another character who is very easy to love. He’s certainly not perfect, which makes him all the more endearing. He’s an extremely loyal character that complements Kady’s character well.

“Its like a beautiful painting of a totally empty room”

Illuminae will take you on an intense emotional journey. Laughter, loss, conspiracy, twists, tears, friendship, space, death, love – it has it all, and more.

Overall this book is a definite favourite for me and I can’t wait to get my hands on the rest of the series! I was very emotionally invested and finished this book in a day as I simply refused to put it down. The lost sleep was well worth it, I cannot recommend this book enough! If this has been on your TBR for a while, do yourself a favour and pick it up. I can guarantee you wont regret it.

“I hear her whisper their names as seventeen depleted uranium rounds punter her full tanks and scatter her across the void”

Sidenote… The Authors are Aussie’s! I don’t seem to have a lot of Australian authors on my bookshelf currently which is definitely something I need to remedy!

Some quotes that have stuck with me and give me all of the feels;

“Endless darkness shot through with tiny spears of sunlight older than you and your entire species” 

“Lines like poetry, she doesn’t move in space, she dances in it”

“All of it happening in perfect, absolute silence”

“Promises are just words, they don’t mean a thing”

“All this in the time it takes god to blink”

“Glittering fragments spinning out into forever”

RATING:

★★★★★