Thursday, February 18, 2010

The 2010 Book Challenge

I decided to join a friend in the 2010 book challenge, which means that I need to read 50 books this year. I also decided to combine this with my current blog (this one) and with drawing/painting. So here you see illustrations/alternate covers of the first three books I have read this year.

A little warning: the quality sucks, because I had to use a camera instead of a scanner.

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne

For a summary of this novel, check this link.

I liked this book. I'm kind of fed up with the whole WWII theme, but this book is well written, gripping, beautiful and inspiring. I like how it is written from the point of view of a young boy, who doesn't understand it when his mother is cheating on his father or when his sister is so obviously in love. The only thing I didn't like was the end of the book. It was too abrupt. I like the unexpected, don't get me wrong, but this was all so incredibly sudden that it was weird. Still, I do recommend this book to anyone, even those who don't like the theme of WWII.

The Book Thief by Mark Zusak

For a summary of this novel, click this link.

Though I liked the novel and the concept (despite its WWII theme), I thought that the style of writing was a little too post-modern. Not so much the illustrations, but the way it is written. It is hard to explain. Maybe Death isn't that much of a narrator. I don't know. It has also been a while since I read it, so I apologize. Following posts on the Challenge will be fresh from my memory.

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

For a summary of this novel, click this link.

I really liked this novel, despite its post-modern feel. As with The Book Thief, I thought that the writing style was sometimes too confusing and too hopscotch. Other than that, however, I really liked the idea of observing how a family copes with the death of a loved one. I also thought it was realistic in the way that it does not go too well and that the parents drift apart. I know a little about the subject (as in, first hand experience) and I am glad that my own parents did not fall into this pit, for my family would have looked so much different then.


Saskia Tielens said...

Wait, the mom cheats on the dad? I don't remember that..I do remember knowing half way what was going to happen, and wishing it wouldn't..I could barely force myself to read on because it was going to be so sad. I loved the book. And I loved The Book Thief as well, despite (or probably because) of it's postmodern feel. I've read more books that have Death as a narrator, that probably helps.

Gina said...

Lol, yeah, with that scary officer, who is way too young for her. That guy the daughter likes. And I so didn't see the end coming. Also not the way it did. I was like:

Wait. What?!

But I've never been good at foreboding and such, so that's probably it ;)
And I'm not the postmodern type I guess.

Lotte said...

I loved the Book Thief as you already know. And especially because it was Death narrating the novel...but obviously everyone has a different taste ;)

I still have The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas lying around here, but after my fair share of MA thesis books related to the Holocaust incl 7 Wiesel books I need a change for the first fews books i'll pick up from now on. So I'll wait a bit longer before i read it,but i'm very curious! And want to see the movie as well, did you see it?