Neil Gaiman: M is for Magic

M Is for MagicM Is for Magic by Neil Gaiman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I think I am not one for short stories. I could not completely dive into those of Poe or Wilde and I had troubles with his. Maybe that is also due to my current situation aka I am going through a rough patch in my life.

But the stories are nevertheless wonderful. I particularly liked Chivalry. But ‘The Price’ is my all time favorite. It made me cry and love my cats even more… (I have a black one as well).

I recommend it as a read and the stories don’t seem so scary as the one’s in “Smoke and Mirrors” which I am also reading at the moment.

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Tennessee Williams: Cat on a hot tin roof

Cat on a Hot Tin RoofCat on a Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had only seen the movie several times because I worship Paul Newman. Always have and always will. That said, I did not know about the homosexual undertone of the play… because the movie makers chickened out and turned the whole admiration between Brick and Skipper upside down. There is no mention of the ‘old bachelors’ from whom Big Daddy inherited the plantation. There is no hint at homosexuality in the play, maybe once in an ironic smile of Big Daddy. And in the film Brick actually desires Maggie. Which in the play is not the case because, and that is not to be denied, Brick and Skipper were in love. Brick is in denial and Skipper was about to tell him and that is one reason that the whole play is moving right on spot two of my favorite play’s list (Othello will always be the lead). It will also occupy that point because it is powerful and cruel and honest and real and I was completely sucked in and could not stop reading. Tennessee Williams does that to me.

So I’m in love. (And I wish that the film would have a little bit braver.)

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J.M. Barrie: Peter Pan

Peter PanPeter Pan by J.M. Barrie
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wonder wonder wonder wonderful!! It is like the warm fluffy blanket to snuggle in. And the end just breaks my heart. I think I’m going to buy a copy for every child I have in my family, seriously. It’s sooo wonderful. of course I knew the story before I read it but the tone of the narrative and the athmosphere and everything just adds some extra magic to it. I’m so glad there are books out there you feel with your heart.

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Haruki Murakami: Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the WorldHard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

That was different.
I wonder how he comes up with a story like that. And most importantly, make it plausible and believable. Quite amazing actually! I enjoyed it after getting through the beginning which confused me so much but I don’t think it’ll be my favorite novel of his.
he also stayed true to his…motifs? Ears, cats are mentioned, food and the characters always go “Oh look something totally impossible is happening so why don’t I just accept it and get close to every human that crosses my path unless they want to harm me”…I always find that strange behaviour but I guess you’d go crazy if you didn’t just go with the flow in worlds like these. 🙂

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Jos Saramago: Blindness

BlindnessBlindness by José Saramago
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Okay, here we go.

1. I absolutely hate the fact that there appearently is a sequel. I would probably not have read it had I known beforehand. Because in my opinion, the suequel totally diminishes the impact of the story. Do I want to know why the blindness came over the world? No. I want to make up my own mind.

2. I can make up my own mind, and I love that, because the novel is written in a fantastic style that contributes majorly to the claustrophobia (just imagine seeing everything white, as if you were lost in the deepest fog imaginable. It’s horrifying) and horror of the story and the events which take place in it. I can make up my mind because I am one of the blind people, according to the narrator (he or she says “we” very often and includes the reader). I can transform it onto the society I live in and apply it to the things we don’t see, because there are no names, just places and jobs and functions of people.

To sum it up: It was an exhausting read. It was a great read. But I am glad it is over and I don’t have to go back to that horrible place. (Except… there is a sequel…). Now I can watch the movie. 🙂

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Markus Zusak: The Book Thief

The Book ThiefThe Book Thief by Markus Zusak
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

After finishing it last night (trust me I took my time to finish it for various reasons on which I’ll elaborate later), I had to take a few breaths to compose myself. To deal. And then I wrote down my thoughts into my diary. That was the only possible action I could take. I couldn’t go downstairs to the living room to fetch me a snack. I couldn’t switch on the television to watch the Colin Firth movie which had already started (that alone should tell you a lot).

I sat down, took my pen, wiped away some more tears and wrote, that I didn’t posess the words to describe the impact of the story on my heart. In the end I came up with two words: Thank you.

The story is a miracle. The narrator is obviously smarter than all of us. And I was greatly comforted and dearly hope he does greet me when I’m dead because he made me feel safe. He made me believe, whatever horrible things happen, in the end it will all be okay.

The language is an impossible mixture of poetry and matter of fact. It’s clear. It’s imaginative (some images it evokes are still in my head and I doubt they’ll leave very soon).

You know how it’ll end. You know it. I knew it and yet I cried over the last 20 pages or so. And only one book has made me cry before. That is why I prolongued the reading. At times I just couldn’t face it. At times I wanted it to last.

Thank you. That is my review summed up.

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