Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol (2009), the novel-sequel to the DaVinci Code and Angels and Demons, is a fast paced, intelligent, and sometimes pretentious novel following around hero Robert Langdon. Just like its predecessor, this book is FICTION and not to be taken as truth. There are some portions of this fictional novel that undermine my faith, and made me uncomfortable. All in all, this book was a great read, but must be taken as fiction. I give it 8 ramheads out of 10.
Whether you like it or not, Harry Potter is a phenomenon. I don’t just mean the movies. I mean the entire genre/movement that is Harry Potter. The books started it all, but then led to fan sites, record breaking movies, a genre of music (Wizard Rock or Wrock), podcasts, and much more. I got a book for Christmas that describes the entire phenomenon written by someone who experienced it first hand. Harry, A History by Melissa Anelli describes Harry Potter’s impact on her life and society in general. If you are a fan of JK Rowling’s Harry, then you will love this book.
Anelli writes in the first person and in her experiences in the last 10 years. She is a very good writer and spices the book up by not writing a chronological history from beginning to end. She writes in small chunks, which makes the book easy to pick up and read for a few minutes and put down. In theory. For me, it was pretty difficult to put down. It was incredibly interesting and insightful and should be on every Potter fan’s “to read” list. The only negative I could find with the book is that in some portions of the book, Anelli tends to get carried away and then gets herself back on track. I didn’t mind because I’m a nerdy Harry Potter fan, but I’m just being objective. Also, just a warning, Anelli tells her story (about Potter) coinciding with the big story. Don’t expect an objective, straight, boring history of Harry.
I give the book 9 ramheads out of 10 and suggest you read it if you like Harry Potter. (Like right now: go out and buy it here.)
I just finished Brisingr by Christopher Paolini. It was pretty much the best book I’ve read since Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I loved this book. It is quite awesome, by reading his books, to watch Paolini mature as a writer, along with his characters. I noticed this in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series as well. This book, though published by a children’s book publisher, is definitely not a children’s book. The descriptive violence (decapitation, crushing of skulls, etc.) it very well written and the plot is very well laid out and devised. Although Eragon had some flaws (taking ideas from other fantasy series), Eldest, got better and veered from the unoriginal ideas, Brisingr is even more original, the remnants of unoriginality are unnoticeable.
Brisingr is the most complex book in the series. It is filled with action, emotion, twists, and “oh yeah, that makes sense” moments. I’m not going to say any spoilers (it wouldn’t matter because nobody reads this…) but I’ll tell you this. If you like fantasy novels (LOTR, Harry Potter, His Dark Materials series[The Golden Compass]…) you should read this one. The Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini is an excellent series that you will enjoy. Brisingr is already a best seller after 3 weeks.
10 ramheads out of 10