September 2016 Reading Recap

During the month of September, I read 3 books, bringing my total of books read for this year to 36! So I am 69% done with my goal of reading 52 books this year, which puts me four books behind schedule. I need to catch up in October!

The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells – 3/5 stars

652083The novel follows one man during an invasion from Mars, an invasion where the Martians come in with deadly heat rays and attempt to make the humans their slaves.

It took me the entire month of September to finish this book. The plot moved at a snail’s pace, and the book altogether was a bit underwhelming. That being said, I did like it. While we’ve all read stories of aliens taking over the earth, this was a bit refreshing. The book focused more on the humans and their reactions,feelings, and behavior rather than the action of things being blown up or people dying that you would imagine seeing in a movie. So while the plot moved a bit slowly because of this, I liked this different perspective

The ending, while rather anticlimactic, but it made sense. The book didn’t go out with a bang, if you will, but I think the simple ending made sense for this classic.

Ender’s Game by  Orson Scott Card – 4/5 stars

Ender's Game (Ender's Saga, #1)Ender Wiggins is the hope for all of mankind. The result of genetic experimentation, he is hoped to be the military genius Earth needs to defeat the Buggers, an alien race seeking to destroy the human species. At six years old, Ender is sent off to battle school and thrown into a game that teaches him the skills and strategy needed to command an army.

I unintentionally went on a sci-fi kick this month. :P

This wasn’t a page-turner for me, but it was an easy and exciting read. The plot was well thought out and were well-weaved together throughout the entire novel. Little tidbits that appeared early on in the novel resurfaced later with a deeper significance. And it’s amazing how much happened in the novel – Ender was six years old at the beginning of the book, but it follows almost fifteen years of his life through the Bugger Wars.

Orson Scott Card did an excellent job with making you feel each character’s emotions. You loved characters and your heart broke with the trials and circumstances they went through. You hated characters and despised their every action and motive. To me, being able to convey such feeling to your reader is the mark of an excellent writer.

Where most books don’t provide a very clear ending, I was really surprised with how much detail the author provided. It still left just enough open for future books, but it was so satisfying to have such a well-wrapped up ending. I’m never a fan when authors leave endings wide open for interpretation and so the reader can imagine whichever ending they want. But I need closure, and this ending left me feeling completely satisfied.

I intend to read the rest of the books in the original quartet, but I know later the author wrote like ten books in total, and ain’t nobody got time for that. :P

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng–  4/5 stars

18693763Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet.

Everything I Never Told You takes place in the 1970s and tells the story of a Chinese-American family living in small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite middle child of the family, but when her dead body is found in the local lake, the delicate bonds that are holding the Lee family together are destroyed.

I read this over a weekend despite the fact that books that focus on character development tend to move slower and don’t pique my interest as much. But there’s something so intriguing about starting from a point in time, and then backtracking to see all of the events that led to that moment, all the words that had to have been spoke and all of the actions that were made to reach that specific moment. It’s fascinating how specific people can have such an influence on a person’s life, and how it shapes that life and that person’s actions.

That’s what this novel does. It goes through defining moments of each family member’s life and how that shaped who they are, and consequently, how they shaped and affected Lydia. It tackles issues such as sexism and racism and feminism, but yet doesn’t revolve around those issues. Lee takes the simple moments of every day life and makes them powerful and complex.

I probably won’t remember the little details and intricacies of this book in a few months or even a few weeks, which brings me to really my only complaint about this book: it’s kind of forgettable. It’s very intricate and complex in the little details, but it’s not something that is going to stay in my mind for a long time. I think if I could relate more to the story then I might have more to takeaway.

Aaaan that’s it for last month. Happy reading!

9 thoughts on “September 2016 Reading Recap”

  1. I know of the first two book, but not the second. You bring up a good point about how some books are just not going to stay with us unless it’s make a good impact or it’s something we can relate, too. I’ve read some things that stayed with me for years, but then some book that were just meh and left my mind very quickly.

    I’ve always loved HG Wells for creating some interesting sci-fi plots, but I’ve yet to really read his book. I’ve only read the watered-down children’s version of his stories, and I was fascinated by his plot, but when I tried to read the original version, his writing style tended to put me to sleep . . .

    I want to read Ender’s Game, but the author’s views on homosexuality and such has made me not want to read the book either . . . but I’ll get over it eventually and read it. It might just take me a while XD

  2. You’re getting really close to your reading goal. Don’t give up, super star ♥

    I remembered aliens and laser beams being a thing in the 90’s! I don’t hear much of this sci-fi imagination all that much these days. It’s interesting to see how our perception of aliens has changed over the years. I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed reading Ender’s Game. While it’s great to let readers imagine all they want, the story is really the author’s. They have to take their story and actually close it (IMO). Everything I Never Told You caught my attention for some reason. The everyday life adds up at the end!

  3. I’ve always been intrigued by War of the Worlds, but I’ve never read the book or seen the film. I’m not sure that I’d want to now though – I hate books that are slow to get through. There’s nothing better than a book that you can put down, in my opinion.

    The last one sounds great though. I love that sort of thing. I love books that are more character-based. And the story sounds really interesting – definitely going on my to-read list!

    And, in reply to your comment on my blog: I have seen Gilmore Girls before, almost ten years ago though. I’ve been rewatching ready for the new ones. Can’t wait!

  4. I can’t believe that you’re almost there for your reading goal! I actually gave up on mine due to this semester being a bit intense for me. Plus, I’m still reading “Spooky Science, debunking the after life.” It’s a pretty interesting book.

    Anyways, I think I have heard of the 1st book you did a recap of “The World of Wars.” I have also heard and read a little of the 2nd “Ender’s Game.” This is only because I have seen previews of the movie with Harrison Ford. However, I did NOT watch it all the way nor have I read the book all the way. I’ve tried to read it, but I just couldn’t get into it as much as I’d like too. Just glad one of us finished the book. I don’t know how you do it with the amount of free time you have after work and everything. Just glad that you’re able to enjoy some “me” time.

  5. I read The War of the Worlds in high school. My teacher would exchange my stories for a book from his personal library and I remembered being so bored, LOL. Maybe I will enjoy it more now that I am an adult and not a 15 year-old. The funny thing is that the focusing so much on the human race is what was draining to me. Now that I’m older, I look for more of a personal connection with the characters.

    I so admire people that can sit down and read so many books in a month. I love to read but I feel like I’m such a busy body and I don’t know how to just relax and do some reading.

  6. Nice work on reading 36 books so far. I am sure you will be able to get to that goal of 52! :D

    I have read The War of the World’s, and I actually liked it. I read it many years ago now and might have to re-read it. :D I haven’t read the other two you mentioned, but they do sound interesting!

  7. Great job on catching up with your goal – 52 books this year is an amazing goal to set yourself. Being really busy I’ve only set myself a total of 5/6 books this year and since getting my Kindle I’ve already smashed that goal! :P

    I’ve not heard of these books but I’ll keep them on my list :D Thanks for sharing!

  8. I was just catching up on all your blog posts (eek, what a bad friend I am), it was so lovely to read about your job and your running but I just felt like commenting on this one. Everything I Never Told You sounds like such a good book. It sounds like ‘my’ kind of book, if you know what I mean. It does sound like a unique and unusual book. I have come across quite a few books that remained memorable in my head because of the way they were written, but I really struggle to remember the details because I think of the book as a whole. It’s interesting.

    I did read The War of the Worlds a while ago and it was OK as far as science fiction goes. I probably recommended it to you before, but for some more fun science fiction you should definitely read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series :)

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