Monday, 28 May 2012

Update on the Challenge #1

So, we're three month away from the end of the We want YOU to read French Authors Challenge.
Some of you did a really good job so far!

As you may remember, the aim was (and still is) to read some French books (not necessarily in French) to discover a bit more about France and its authors

But enough, let's report your progress!

Jeremy - Goal: 1 book (Antoine de St-Exupéry level)

-The Little Prince

=> 1 book so far

Julia - Goal: 3 books (Alexandre Dumas level)


=> 0 book so far

Patty - Goal: 3 books (Alexandre Dumas level)

-Une gourmandise

=> 1 book so far

Emma - Goal: 5 to 10 books (Albert Camus/Jules Verne level)

-The Adventures of Hergé

-Le Dieu du carnage

-Du côté de chez Swann

-An Accident in August

-Le Grand Meaulnes

=> 5 books so far

Charlotte - Goal: 10 books (Jules Verne level)

-Une Forme de vie

-Cahier d'un retour au pays natal

-Sierra Brulante

=> 3 books so far

Ismé - Goal: 10 books (Jules Verne level)


=> 0 book so far

Cheri - Goal: 20 books (Victor Hugo level)


=> 0 book so far

Great job to Emma and Jeremy who have already succeded, and are willing to go further!
And to Betty and Charlotte who are on the right track!
Good luck and good reads to the others if they're still in the game!
If I've missed some of your readings, go put your links in the Mister Linky's Magical Box!

For those willing to, you still can enter the Challenge for the last three months!
But anyway there will be another edition of it, starting on September 1st! Plus, we linked our own reviews in the list-of-some-books-you-can-pick-for-the-Challenge so you can learn a little bit more about those books we talked about!

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Red Seas Under Red Skies read along
[last part]

In case you haven't followed the first part of this read along on The Lies of Locke Lamora, let me tell you, you missed something.
But it's not too late! (well, now it kinda is)
Here we are again, reading and answering questions about the second part of this awesome series, Red Seas Under Red Skies.
Care to join?
All the details are on the Little Red Reviewer blog, so take a book and join the fun!

Gosh, it's really the end now. I don't even know why I'm bothered about it because I know that the next book is coming soon, and I'll throw myself at it as soon as it's out like the shameless fangirl I am, but still. The read along was so much fun, and I loved re-reading and discussing the story with everyone, and discovering all the little things I would have never thought of without you. Thanks!!!

1. Oh my god, such a lot going on I thought the showdown between the Poison Orchid and the Sovereign was brilliantly written and they were holding their own until Utgar and his nasty device turned up. Well a lot of you had kind of predicted it, and I suppose we’d been let off too easy so far in terms of deaths of well-liked characters – but come on, did you expect something like that? And how on earth will Jean ever recover?
I'm one of those who knew that the minute Ezri and Jean were head over heels in love, one of them would have to go. How, when... I certainly hadn't predicted that she would bloody burn alive to save the ship. Fucking devotion!! I know, the ship (and the crew) totally deserved to be saved, and sending Drakasha to do it would have been really cruel for her kids, but Ezri was still so young :( *sob*
I don't know if Jean will recover, grief is something that fades away without ever disappearing, so I think part of him will always remain torn by the lost of his loved one. I wonder if he'll ever let himself fall in love after that... as if we needed a second Locke, really!

2. The deceit, the betrayal, first Rodanov and then Colvard. Even now I’m not entirely sure I understand Colvard – Rodanov was never keen on the oath but Colvard seemed okay with it all and yet in this final deceit she was more devious than Rodanov – what do you think was her motive?
I think they are pirates, and even though they pretend to get along, in the end everyone thinks of themselves first. If it had been Rodanov asking for what Drakasha asked, Colvard would have probably behaved the same way and suggested to get rid of him behind his back. Some people are like that... yay for trust issues!

3. Merrain – such a puzzle, no real answer, the mysterious tattoo, the determination to kill everyone to keep her identity and that of her master a secret. Does anybody have any ideas where she’s from and what she’s up to exactly and who the hell is she working for??
Hum, Karthain? I don't think they do women (or do they?). Maybe something to do with where Sabetha is? I kinda remember that the Lillies had tattoos, or was I dreaming? She could be in one of those guilds that do the same as the Gentlemen Bastards in their youth, disguise themselves to infiltrate a powerful organisation and get away when it becomes dangerous. I don't know if she's clearly against them or just trying to dissuade them from coming after her...

4. Finally we get to the point of the GB’s latest scheme, all that elaborate planning for two years, fancy chairs, gambling, dust covered cards, abseiling lessons – all for one gigantic bluff. I loved the diversionary tactic here but having finally reached the end of the story and, more to the point, the end result – do you think the GB’s are as clever as they think they are?
I think this was the shittiest EVER result they could have gotten, I mean, what the hell?! Mr Lynch, leave them be, for christ sake!!
Back to the question, it's tough to assess how clever they think they are, when you think of it they did run the plan very well, they anticipated quite many things and managed to get away safely without killing anyone unnecessarily, so just for that they deserve an A. The fact that Requin had fakes... how could they know if no one does, not even Selendri? And according to the buyer it's not a common practice there, so really, that was just bad luck.
Or should I say... relentless persecution?

5. I must admit that I liked Requin and Selendri – particularly at the end – I don’t think Requin will go after Locke and Jean, he was even sort of cool and composed about it all, in fact he came across as a bit pleased with himself because he had the last laugh. Plenty of good characters this time which did you enjoy reading most about this time?
Yes, that bastard, he indeed got the last laugh. At least he's fair enough not to go after them, that would really have been too much!
I love a lot of the characters in these books, so it's really hard to pick one. Locke was the big star in the first one, and now it's more Jean's turn, but the people gravitating around them all had their charm and their defaults, so I can't choose.

6. Finally, a triple barrel question, I know I shouldn’t ask this BUT, on reflection do you have a favourite between LoLL or RSURS?? And why? Are you going to pick up Republic of Thieves? And, where do you think Lynch will take us to next??
Hum, don't know, but maybe RSURS was a bit better because more focused on less characters, and less flashbacks, so easier to follow and get enthralled by it. First one was still awesome, though, but you feel more like it's a first book, and now that we know all we need to (well, almost), we can focus on more detailed stories.
As I said before, I'll throw myself at Republic of Thieves the minutes it comes out. Can't wait to meet them again!
Regarding the next adventures... with the prologue about Sabetha, I'm expecting to see her joining the gang again, and discover what happened between her and Locke and how he will react around her. And I'm also expecting vicious bondsmage throwing challenges at them, and some sneaky attacks from Regal, because hey, kittens, that's how they are.

So sad to end this read-along, but looking forward to the next one! Check the other reviews from the Little Red Reviewer and see you... someday, I hope!

Monday, 21 May 2012

Jasper Fforde - The Eyre Affair

Title: The Eyre Affair (Thursday Next, book 1)
Author: Jasper Fforde
Pub. year: 2001
Pages: 373
Editor: Hodder & Stoughton

Summary: There is another 1985, somewhere in the could-have-been, where the Crimean war still rages, dodos are regenerated in home-cloning kits and everyone is deeply disappointed by the ending of 'Jane Eyre'. In this world there are no jet-liners or computers, but there are policemen who can travel across time, a Welsh republic, a great interest in all things literary - and a woman called Thursday Next.

I'm sure a lot of you heard about Jasper Fforde before, probably for the very good reason that this guy is a genius.

I mean, he wrote this world which looks very much like ours, except for.. a lot of things! I mean, there's a police for crime against books, dodos are back, there's wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff involved, ...
It's like a giant cauldron in which he put a little bit of investigation, a spoon of SF, some book-related shenanigans, a bit of timetravel, some reflexions about wars and its point, and other awesome and surprising stuff, and then the series came out of it.

We discover Thursday Next, 30-something woman, who's working for the LiteraTec department of the SpecOps, which supposedly is a tranquil kind of job, but which appears not to be quite what it's supposed to be, for her ; her father who can't stay more than 10mn in the same place and jumps back and forward in time to hide (and have fun, let's be honest) ; Acheron Hades, the big bad guy, who enjoys being a villain just for the sake of it ; Mycroft Next who doesn't seem to realise that some of his inventions can be really dangerous and that some people are willing to do anything to aquire them ; Jack Schitt (another one with a funny name) who's a little bit megalomaniac and thinks he owns the world.. Well, let's say that these colorful characters are clearly responsible for most of the fun & rythm in this story.

At the end, I was almost willing to reread Jane Eyre, though I didn't enjoyed it very much the first time (I couldn't even remember most of the story, if it weren't for Thursday summary), and to read Martin Chuzzlewit (by Charles Dickens) and Richard III (I don't need much convincing to read Shakespeare books, though).

There were some disappointing points at first, but after thinking about it, I realised it was perfect this way. So in the end, I enjoyed this book very much and I can't wait to read the next ones.

Actually, it's really hard to talk about this book because it contains so many things that I cannot really put words on them, so maybe the easiest way for you to know what is exactly this book, is by reading it. Give it a go, you'll see, it's awesome!

" I said to him when he rebuilt the muscles in my arm, 'Do you think I'll be able to play the violin?' and he said: 'Of course!' and then I said: 'That's good, I couldn't before!' "

" 'They'd never get here in time. It's easy. A lobotomised monkey could do it.'
'And where are we going to find a lobotomised monkey at this time of night?'
'You're being windy, Bowden.'

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Red Seas Under Red Skies read along
[fourth part]

In case you haven't followed the first part of this read along on The Lies of Locke Lamora, let me tell you, you missed something.
But it's not too late!
Here we are again, reading and answering questions about the second part of this awesome series, Red Seas Under Red Skies.
Care to join?
All the details are on the Little Red Reviewer blog, so take a book and join the fun!

'You have... you have such hoops as I have never seen in any cask on any ship, such shiny and well-fit hoops—'
Jean's best pick-up line ever.

Hey, it's our usual Saturday Sunday meeting, folks! I am sad to say, this is already the before-last part, and while I've never really managed to be on time at all during this read along, re-reading this awesome book is still very awesome, and I'm happy to have reached this far. The Big Bad Ass Full Of Surprises end is coming quite near, but not quite there either... that was some quality pirate time we got this week, ahoy! (isn't that totally cliché ?)

1. I was much relieved when Jean and Locke made up, which started with Locke's gesture of a cup full of honesty with Cpt. Drakasha. Do you think that was hard for Locke? Or was he using this bit of honesty like any other weapon in his arsenal to get what he wants in the end?
I think the guy can be occasionally sincere when needed and it really seems like his fight with Jean affected him, and he realized that the pirates where really their people and that he couldn't just betray them to save his ass. It's probably as hard as it is a relief to finally come clear (or clearer) to Drakasha, and actually try to organize something together instead of going being her back. Plus, I don't think he would have managed alone.

2. The Parlor Passage: We still don't know Locke's true name, but whatever was in that mist does. What do you think it is?
I love the ghostly-misty parts, it's the kind of atmosphere I'm really fond of and it was great to see all those tough guys being scared shitless of something they couldn't see. I don't know what is was exactly, maybe just some swamp mist, potent rotting hypnotic flowers and a bit of a collective wild imagination, or maybe some old goddess of the sea is lurking around, waiting for poor souls to drown in her clutches. Don't care, love it!

3. There was an interesting section of the book that started about where Locke assisted Drakasha in selling the Red Messenger; he put on the persona of Leocanto Kosta and used the alias Tavras Callas and then Drakasha was still thinking of him as Ravelle..... Did using all those various aliases in such a short amount of time have your mind spinning a little? Do you think Lynch did this on purpose to give the reader a sense of Locke's mind?
It was ok during the selling of the boat, because it didn't really matter what name was used, it was quite easy to know that Locke was being himself (finally getting some con action!) and there was no real confusion. The tough part for me is when they go back to the boat, and Jean calls Locke Ravelle, but Drakasha calls him Kosta (and I'm always doubting which one is Kosta or De Ferra), and Ezri calls Jean Jean except when there is people and it's Jerome, and I'm like, who the hell is talking with who?! But it's quite fun, at least you get your brains working a little.

4. That was a sweet little kiss between Cpt. Zamira and Cpt. Jaffrim at the end of the Captains' Council. Do you think they have some history, or is it just innocent flirting that's been going on for some time?
I kinda missed the kiss, or it just didn't stick... well, I don't know, but Drakasha is old enough to have had fun with many lads, so why not him?

5. Jean and Ezri. Cue dove-cooing and little winged hearts with sparkles. Do you think Jean will stay with the Poison Orchid or that Ezri will leave her ship to pal around with Jean and Locke?
Ezri would grab the little winged hearts and stuff them up your arse to see you fart sparkles, if she heard that !!
I don't think Jean would be comfy staying on a ship but Ezri wouldn't be comfy on ground. They would have to find a compromise, and hey, everyone knows Jean would have to bow in the end. But you know Lynch; I don't think the compromise will be their biggest problem at the moment, it'll be more the staying alive...

6. What is Utgar up to? What are his motivations?
For me, he's just one of those guys that want money and power (like the fake Locke with Requin) and he's just looking for less competition and a better position. Maybe they had some arguments with Drakasha too... but anyway, I hate his guts. First, I don't like treason, and especially not for something as petty as money, and second, I just want to hang him to rot in Port Prodigal before they sail again. You'll soon see why. (teasers, they are bad. Sorry!)

7. So last week we hashed over that Merrain killed some of Stragos's guards on Windward Rock. But when Jean and Locke visit him, he doesn't mention it. What is up with that?
Well, Stragos knows, so I'm thinking they're together on that, or maybe he just forgot about it (not likely), or maybe he has something in reserve for them later on... who knows what bullshit this sneaky woman could have told him?

8. This week's section left us where the book began - Jean pointing a crossbow at Locke's throat. Do you think Jean knows who sent these crossbowers? Is he on their side? Is it a clever ploy to get him and Locke out of this predicament? Did you find it excruciatingly hard to stop here?
I haven't mentioned it before but I didn't like the start. I never really enjoyed those teasers, especially if they are several pages long and exactly the same as later on in the story. Lynch, you don't need that to keep us interested, you know! And at the beginning, I totally though that Jean was ganging up on him. Now that we have the full story, I think he's on Locke side and it's just a scheme to trick their opponent. But why the hell is Locke so freaked out?

So few pages remaining, urg! It's not really excruciating to stop here, it just is to stop! And even more to know that the next book is not ready yet! Check the other reviews from the Little Red Reviewer and see you next week for the end *sob*.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Jules Verne - Journey to the Center of the Earth

Title: Journey to the Center of the Earth
Original title: Voyage au centre de la Terre
Author: Jules Verne
Pub. year: 1864
Pages: 320
Editor: Penguin Books

Summary: What a stunning discovery: an old, coded note that actually contains directions for reaching the Earth’s very core! And once he finds it, renowned geologist Professor Liedenbrock can’t resist setting out with his 16-year-old nephew to go where only one man has gone before. Jules Verne takes young readers on one of the most incredible journeys ever imagined, from Iceland’s frozen tundra far down into fantastic underground prehistoric worlds and back up again through the fires of an erupting volcano.

Being French, it's quite impossible have never heard of Jules Verne. But I have to admit I never tried to read one of his books until this month. I think I was a bit scared that it would be really hard to read, with all the science stuff and the 19th century style. Anyway, I decided to give it a go and see if it was readable or not.

And actually it is. It must be for this author to be as well known as he is, that long after his death. So, obviously, it is quite scientific, but not that much and it's not really important if you don't understand some minor details, you get what they're saying because it's written so that you understand the most important of it.

When it comes to the style, well, it is better than what I expected, even if I'm still not fond of the way of talking and interacting from one and a half century ago. And the way that people are written too. It's just too.. distant, not really endeavouring. Maybe it's because he is a pretty quiet man that I was more curious about Hans, the Icelander, than any of the other. But it didn't stop me from reading the book to the end and enjoying it.

I had never really imagined a world deep under my feet, so it was a nice change and a great adventure! Even if we can easily guess the main plot, we are diving into an unknown and curious place that is full of surprises and mysteries.

Quite a good impression then, even if it's not one of my favorite! I have some other Jules Verne books in my TBR pile, so maybe I'll come back to you with some of them, someday. Meanwhile, you can try this one!

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Red Seas Under Red Skies read along
[third part]

In case you haven't followed the first part of this read along on The Lies of Locke Lamora, let me tell you, you missed something.
But it's not too late!
Here we are again, reading and answering questions about the second part of this awesome series, Red Seas Under Red Skies.
Care to join?
All the details are on the Little Red Reviewer blog, so take a book and join the fun!

Sooo... Sunday again, hu? And I didn't even get my usual funny vulgar quote this time, shame on me. I admit I had to skip over this part really fast due to other obligations... but luckily, I remembered it quite well (and here I though my memory was a piece of Gruyere!), so let's get on with the discussion!

1. Locke and Jean's ability to find themselves at the center of a serious mess seems unparalleled. At this point, do you think that Stragos will get the return he expects on his investment in them?
Oh, I think Stragos with get some return on his investment, but probably not the one he expects! I am always amazed at the sheer bad luck the Gentlemen seem to suffer from. I mean, they come for a game, they get a free trip at sea, then lose the women, then forget the cats, then lose the captain, then end up having to be actual pirates and fighting and... ok, I stop here. But after all that, there is no way Locke will bring Stragos the war he wants without dictating his own terms.

2. Merrain's activities after our boys leave Windward Rock are interesting. What do you think her plans are?
Always said I don't like her. What is wrong with this woman? I know she's afraid Locke and Jean would become too important for Stragos (is she afraid to lose her position?) but killing her own people just "in case of" is just so, so wrong. I don't know what her plans are, but I hope they get canceled by a nice hard blow on the head.

3. Does anyone know why having cats aboard the ship is so important?
The cuteness? The fluffiness? The morning wake-up by a nice little rough tongue on the face?
I have no idea, but what Caldris said about them being proud even wet makes sens. Cats rock, nothing you can do about that!

4. The word "mutiny" creates a lot of mental pictures. Were you surprised? Why or why not?
I think I kinda expected it. As I mentioned above, they went off the wrong foot, with the missing women and cats, Locke's very poor attempts to cover his mess, then losing Caldris... the moment he died, I knew they were good to get thrown off the ship. And mutiny is indeed quite a nasty thing, so I am glad they didn't slash them or anything.
I know I shouldn't, but... getting them naked in front of Ezri and the Poison Orchid's crew was hilarious! Just for that, I'm glad of the mutiny. Plus, Jean must be some kind of eye candy to end up where he will, hu?

5. Ah, the Poison Orchid. So many surprises there, not the least of which were the captain's children. Did you find the young children a natural part of the story?
It's slightly weird, but somehow understandable. I mean, she wouldn't leave her kids on the shore, that would be way more dangerous that keeping them around... of course, you need to be confident enough to believe you'll always be the best pirate and no one will murder them, but I think that's exactly how Zamira is. Don't know if it's good for the kids, but Barsavi's probably weren't worse educated than those ones!

6. Jean is developing more and more as a character as we get further in to the book. Ezri makes the comment to him that "Out here, the past is a currency, Jerome. Sometimes it's the only one we have." I think several interesting possibilities are coming into play regarding Jean and Ezri. What about you?
I really like Jean, I think it takes some time to get used to him but afterwards, you just can't let him go. I love how he's sweet and rough at the same time, and how he gets really angry at Locke when he deserves it, and how they always manage to stick together in the end. Ezri is totally sweet on him (in a bully way) and as we see in the last part, he's not willing to let go either. I know Locke seems to think only of himself but I know he'll get around, he wouldn't let a guy like Stragos mess up with their life and get away with it.

7. As we close down this week's reading, the Thorn of Camorr is back! I love it, even with all the conflict. Several things from their Camorri background have come back up. Do you think we will see more Camorri characters?
Not sure Camorri people will come as far as here... I think that the past is important, like Ezri said, but it's also something which has gone and I picture them more going forward than getting back to old acquaintances. Except maybe some old friends from Karthain, someday...

Alright, things are rolling quite fast on the pirate side now! Check the other reviews from the Little Red Reviewer and let's see next week who's going to betray who!

Monday, 7 May 2012

Jean-Claude Mourlevat - Winter's End

Title: Winter's End
Original title: Le Combat d'hiver
Author: Jean-Claude Mourlevat
Pub. year: 2006
Pages: 415
Editor: Candlewick Press

Summary: In this award-winning story translated from the original French, four teens, determined to escape the tyranny responsible for the deaths of their parents years before, flee their prison-like boarding school and are pursued by a terrifying pack of dog-men sent to hunt them down.

I chose to take the short summary, even if it doesn't really fit, because the long one I saw everywhere tells pretty much the whole book and I hate it when summary spoil every step of a story.

I heard about Mourlevat for years now, but never had the occasion to read one of his books. This one was one of the two I heard the most about in the past couple of years, so I was really happy when a friend sent it to me as a gift a few weeks ago. It didn't take me long to read it, as you can see.

The first thing I loved about this book is that the whole story isn't about romance. I mean, sure, there's a bit of love in the book, but it's not the main subject, it's just a "side effect". When I read a dystopy, it's because I want to read about society that went wrong and about people who fight for their freedom, not so see starcrossed lovers in almost EVERY ONE OF THOSE BOOKS. I mean, I'm not saying I don't like love story or that love isn't important, it's just that love isn't the only reason why one could fight for his freedom. And lately it felt a little bit like that in the dystopian books.

Apart from a few genetic combinated creatures, Mourlevat depicts a pretty believable world where things went wrong. The Phalange took the power years ago and tained quite well its people with some barbaric practices. A quite oppressive world, as you can imagine. But obviously, the main characters aim to set the country free and walk in the path of their parents in order to live a better life.

The story being a one-shot and not a serie, the world isn't really deeply detailed but it's enough to dive into it! It's was a really page-turner book for me.

I think the only thing I didn't really enjoy about this story is that for 17yo young people, they felt like they were 14. So naive and innocent that I couldn't believe they were in their late teenage lives. In that way, I had a bit of a hard time to like them at first. Especially the girls (for the love-at-first-sight part with the first boys they saw, or the "I don't care what the consequences of my acts on other people are").

Anyway, it's a good story, very much enjoyable, that I would recommand to everybody (well maybe not to childrens, 'cause it can be a pretty violent in some parts)!

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Red Seas Under Red Skies read along
[second part]

In case you haven't followed the first part of this read along on The Lies of Locke Lamora, let me tell you, you missed something.
But it's not too late!
Here we are again, reading and answering questions about the second part of this awesome series, Red Seas Under Red Skies.
Care to join?
All the details are on the Little Red Reviewer blog, so take a book and join the fun!

'You,' said Locke, 'are a goat-faced wad of slipskinner's shit.'

What is wrong with me? I used to so not care about the schedule and be on time, and now that I'm trying to make it, I'm late again (good for me that it's still Saturday in some parts of the world)! But well, let us not dwell on that. The second part of this reading hasn't quite been as wonderful as the first one, less discoveries and a lot a preparation for the rest of the story... but hey, it was great nonetheless. Shall we?

1. Now that we know a little more about Selendri and Requin, what do you think of them? I worry Locke is suddenly realizing this con might be a bit tougher than he expected.
Well, for one I think that this crazy savior gesture Requin apparently pulled on Selendri is really heroic, and even though the man is a (rich) ass, that accounts for something. I wonder if Selendri stays around because of her sense of duty or because she really loves him... women mysteries, no need to pry, I guess. But Locke probably knew what he was getting into, the Sinspire is no joke and his master no softie, so he probably expected the worse already. The con is going to be tough, and that's what makes it good!

2. Isn’t the Artificers’ Crescent just amazing? If you could purchase anything there, what would it be?
This is my second reading and a got a clearer picture of the place this time, this whole island business was a bit confusing for me and I'm always so fond of dialogues that I tend to slide over long descriptions. Sometimes I wish we would have a tv series (or a movie) to picture this as greatly as it deserves - anyone feels like it?
I don't know what I would buy... I more the roam-around kind of girl, so I'll probably spend an insane amount of time visiting before finally deciding on something.

3. What did you think of Salon Corbeau and the goings on that occur there? A bit crueler than a Camorri crime boss, no?
Ha, what a horrid place. Gives me shivers. Sadly, I understand the concept - people with too much money get to insane extends to entertain themselves, and what could be better than humiliate poor people together without being judged? That's really a sad, sad way of leaving, and those things the guy told Locke about how no one forced the poor people to come here? I wanted to punch his face. Twice.
Camorr is such a sweet vacation resort in comparison... (ok, maybe I'm exaggerating a tiny bit but like Locke, this gruesome business makes me very angry.)

4. The Archon might be a megalomaniacal military dictator, but he thinks he’s doing right by Tal Verrar: his ultimate goal seems to be to protect them. What do you think he’s so afraid of?
I think he's crazy. What was it already?
'Full-on barking madness is a state of rational bliss to which you may not aspire. Men living in gutters and drinking their own piss would shun your company. You are a prancing lunatic.'
Yes, just like that. I mean, really. The automates? The sixty guys on the roof pretending to make it rain in a clay forest? Launching an attack on the city and risking so many lives just to get more money and power? How does that protect the city?
The guy is nuts. I can't think of anything else.

5. And who the heck is trying to kill Locke and Jean every few days? they just almost got poisoned (again!)!
Ah yes, the underlining funky business. I think Lynch likes that, putting on a front story line, then slipping some "disagreements" and adding a few thorns in their socks while no one's looking. I'm still as bad as ever on speculation but Merrain does not inspire me any good. She's weird, in the nasty kind of way. Beware of lurking women!

6. Do you really think it’s possibly for a city rat like Locke to fake his way onto a Pirate ship?
Locke is gonna puke his guuuts-out, Locke is gonna puke his guuts-out ♫
Sorry, but I don't think it's going to be fun. I feel like the training will get them bitching again and again about how hard and crappy it is, and once they're actually sailing, they'll realize it's even worse. I'm not even mentioning their bad luck which will probably strike again, and again, and again. They are so gonna hate it.

Phew, not so bad after all, he! Check the other reviews from the Little Red Reviewer and let's meet again next week for some pirates adventures!

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Red Seas Under Red Skies read along
[first part]

In case you haven't followed the first part of this read along on The Lies of Locke Lamora, let me tell you, you missed something.
But it's not too late!
Here we are again, reading and answering questions about the second part of this awesome series, Red Seas Under Red Skies.
Care to join?
All the details are on the Little Red Reviewer blog, so take a book and join the fun!

'Fuck me with a poleaxe!'
(Locke's best insult ever.)

Four days late... what a shitty way to start such an awesome read along. I hope you'll forgive me for this terrible attitude (for my defense, we had a bloody long weekend in Europe and I was too lazy tired to take care of blogging matters). And see, I'm already swearing! Really Locke, is that your bad influence staining my beautiful language again?!
Oh well, I guess it's mostly me. Whatever, let's start with the first part of a 5 week goodness with my favorite thieves EVER.
If you haven't read the book yet, I suggest you start now (here's a nice teaser in case you're not convinced).

'I take some of it back,' he said. 'You might still be a lying, cheating, low-down, greedy, grasping, conniving, pocket-picking son of a bitch.'
'Thanks,' said Locke.

1. The Sinspire. It looks like our heroes (can they really be called that?) find themselves in search of a way into an unbeatable vault. Do you think they have what it takes to make it happen?
Of course they are our heroes! Well, mine at least. And yes, they most surely have what it takes to make it happen, but that's not going to be easy. Well, Mr Lynch wouldn't bring us 600 pages of goodies for them to get a pick, open the vault, get rich and retire in some boring house on the countryside. There's gonna be action! Drama! Unexpected twits of horrible events that will scar them for life! Err... well, you know, the usual. Is it so wrong to like seeing them suffer?

2. Anyone want to guess how they're going to make it happen?
You know I suck at guessing. Plus, I already read the book, and at the end I was all "what the fuck?!" and completly amazed by the turn of events. Whatever I could guess would sound crappy after that.
I've been wondering quite a lot about the "pirates" theme of the book, since the beginning is completely off track, and it's really nice to see the story develop from another direction than the one expected.

3. It's a little different this time around, with us just being focused on Locke and Jean. Is anyone else missing the rest of the Bastards as much as I am?
I miss them, but somehow not so much. I think Jean and Locke have always been the stars of the story, and though the death of the others pained me (A LOT), I don't really miss their presence now. I am glad that we get to see and understand more about those two, about this special bond that links them, and how they kind of need each other to go on. It's more personal to have only 2 main characters, I guess, even though Locke still remains the head of the small gang after all.
Oh, let me throw a nice little quote there, because I just love how they bitch together all the time:
'I like the cores,' said Jean sulkily. 'All the little crunchy bits.'
'Goats eat the gods-damned crunchy bits.'
'You're not my mother.'
'Well, true. Your mother would be ugly.'

4. I love the section where Jean starts to build a new guild of thieves. It really shows just how well trained and tough he is. Do you think the Bastards will end up training others along the way again like Bug?
I personnally think that this whole "let's train a new gang" was his way to cope with grief and sadness from seeing Locke drunk and devastated. Jean needs to do something all the time, and it was his occupation for a while, until he decided to shake his friend back to reality. I don't really see them forming a new gang... first of all, Locke seems to have a very limited supply of acceptance regarding living with other people, and he probably can't fill the space of his lost brothers with anyone else. Plus, too painful in case he loses the new ones again. Having each other seems to be a handful for them already!

5. For those of you looking for Sabetha, we still haven't spotted her yet. Anyone else chomping at the bit to see the love of Locke's life?
I can't remember when I gave up, but after the first couple chapters I think you realize it's not going to happen there. Damn this suspense!! But I've read the book 3 excerpt and she's in it. FINALLY. My patience is being horribly stretched, as you might guess (and endure yourself).

6. It's early on, but the Bastards are already caught up in plots that they didn't expect. How do you think their new "employer" is going to make use of them (The Archon, that is)?
Oh he's gonna fuck them up, alright. First the kidnapping, then the Bondsmagi disgusting business, and then the poison? Darlings, you're in it up your neck. The archon will be the biggest thorn in their foot for the rest of this book!

Alright, I'll be back in a few days for part two, and on time, I swear! Check other reviews from the Little Red Reviewer and join if you want, it's plenty fun!