Hey! I'm alive!!! I haven't posted reviews in SO long and have been a bad, bad book blogger, but I hope to get back on track this week with these two catch-up reviews today, a catch-up Musing Mondays in a few minutes, and another review (and giveaway!) later this week! So, watch out for that, since it's my first. :) ooooh, I'm a giveaway virgin! Anyways, on to the reviewin'.
A Wrinkle in Time
by Madeleine L'Engle
I first read this book when I was in 6th grade and I HATED it. Ugh, I can still remember the angst of having to talk about this book and right a report on it when I just loathed it. I don't remember what I was interested in reading at that time in my life, but this book definitely wasn't it. So, when the challenge category of reading a book with The Nest Book Club and participate in the monthly discussion came up, and this was the chosen April book, I for some reason decided that it would be a good idea to read it again because there's a chance that I was just an angst-filled 6th grader who didn't see the wonderful qualities in this book...but then again, it really could just not be my cup of tea.
Unfortunately, it ended up being the latter. I guess that I didn't really hate it as much as my 6th grade self did, but I definitely didn't enjoy it. And, if I would have remembered the ending more clearly, I probably wouldn't have finished it this time around. But, I stuck with it, and was still pretty unimpressed.
The story begins with Meg, a typical, awkward 14 year old girl whose parents are scientists and little brother is "weird" but really is some ahead-of-our-time genius. Meg does poorly in school, even though she's really quite bright, and basically complains a lot about how she's a misfit, awkward, etc. Meg's father has been gone for a few years now doing some top-secret science thing and Meg complains about missing him a lot too. One night, her little brother meets a weird lady named Mrs. Whatsit, and her friends Mrs. Who and Mrs. Which. The three Mrs. tesser (AKA travel through physical space very quickly) Meg and her brother to another planet which is being overrun with evil (a dark cloud around the planet) to find and save her father. Evil-ness occurs, Meg whines, Father is saved, and everyone arrives back at home without making a very big impact on the huge evil.
The one good part about reading this as an adult would be that now I know why I don't care for it. First, I just wasn't interested in Meg figuring things out and defeating evil. I was annoyed by her character's seemingly constant whining and complaining about things that she could change if she just put a little work and effort into it. The other thing that kind of bothered me was that this was a very sci-fi themed book with references to mind reading and control, time and space warping, and rearranging particles yet there were several references to God not just by the Earth people, but by the creatures from other planets. To me, this just didn't really fit because it was basically insinuating that everyone has the same God, when even solely here on Earth, that isn't necessarily the case. The religious God references just didn't quite seem to fit into the theme of the book, in my opinion. I would read a line mentioning religion or God and just think to myself, "huh, that seemed a little out of left field..."
So, I have to give A Wrinkle in Time redo a 4 out of 10. I didn't like it (again) but I'm pretty sure that my sixth grade self would have given it a 0 or 1, so it's a slight improvement over that. I just hope that my someday children won't have to read it...there's definitely better things out there.
Book 3 of the Outlander Series
by Diana Gabaldon
Ahhhhh, now THIS is more like it!!! After dragging myself through A Wrinkle in Time, a bit of time with Claire and Jamie was JUST what I needed. Voyager picks up where Dragonfly In Amber leaves off. Claire is in Scotland with her daughter, Brianna, and has just discovered that Jamie did not die in the battle at Culloden. She decides that she will find where he ended up with the help of Bree and Roger, and may be able to return to him. The first part of the book alternates between Claire talking about their research to find Jamie's whereabouts after the battle and Jamie actually getting away from the battle alive and what all he is going through. I loved this part because I just ACHED for the both of them. I mean, Jamie knew that Claire was gone and really, he wanted to die at that battle, he really was planning on dying! So they are both just going through life knowing that they will never see their true love again. So. Sad.
Anyways, Claire finally finds where Jamie is at approximately 1768 (since the rocks took her back almost 200 years exactly) and decides to go and find him. I stayed up until well past my bedtime reading this section because I just had to see them reunited!!! And, I almost squee'd out loud when Claire walked into his printing shop and he FAINTED at the sight of her (and I would have squee'd had my husband not been next to me sleeping). Ah, true love! Reunited! And it feels SO good! but of course, the good cannot last because Jamie is always into something not-quite-legal...and this causes Claire to accept Jamie as the man he is now, for the sake of the man she once knew and they embark on a crazy adventure from Scotland all the way to West Indies.
Throughout it all there's love, passion, adventure, and a bit of humor and I just can't get enough! 10 out of 10 stars. Better than Dragonfly in Amber by a smidgen since the newlywed type passion was back.