29# Book Review- ★★★★☆ (3.5 Stars)

Jane Eyre

By-

Charlotte Bronte

Vintage-UK

 

A Victorian Gothic Novel, quite lengthy in my opinion. It was dragging and tiresome in certain portions with excessive atmospheric description (quite well written though, in my opinion.) When fifteen year old me had picked up this book, she’d expected a rosy romance novel and was left severely disappointed. At twenty, I now see this book as a tale of a woman’s growth into a head-strong individual, capable of rational and independent thought, grappling with issues of principles and religion. The book depicts Jane—the protagonist’s—evolution into an independent woman. She not only battles with the social order and her place in it, but also her own self. This book then, is a series of battles.

Her first battle is with her own impassioned soul, so susceptible to offense, loneliness and volatile feelings. As a child she is easily provoked. Not so much as a battle on the social side, it does showcase the life of young girls—poor or orphaned, living off charity.

Her second battle is more rooted in the social and class order. Now subdued, she sets out to discover more of the world, and herself. Falling in love with her master, and her own status as a mere governess repeatedly shows how strongly confined the lives of governesses can be, and how strongly the lives of everyone is bound by their class. Jane has to subdue her love for she knows there is no point in pining after a man who is so much richer than she’ll ever be and part of circles she can only dream of being in. However, the class structures are looser, that is visible. Not dependent on name alone, anyone with a fortune can be part of the first circle. A governess can marry a man so much richer than her, if he chooses to have her.

The third and last battle I believe, is a very personal battle—a struggle between desire and principles; individuality and moral duty, which is reconciled in the end.

The book also depicts the idea of beauty and how people in the Victorian era set a store by it. Jane, a “plain” protagonist rises above her circumstances, always maintaining a strong hold on her individual beliefs, thoughts and desires that are not swayed by any man or woman. With the society putting a strong emphasis on moral and religious duty, Jane Eyre sheds light on one’s duty towards their self, towards their own potential. It puts emphasis on the gift of God—not a heavenly abode, but the life God has given, and one must perform the duty of living it fully. Jane comes across as a pure, good-natured Christian despite following her own desires. She even appears dutiful, for she dedicates her life to sustaining someone else’s.

I did not find the protagonist very likable, again, a personal opinion. Being an atheist with a very rebellious, non-conforming nature I could not like Jane’s religious fervor nor her occasional subdued and docile characteristics.

Ultimately, this is a good book and an important piece of Victorian Literature. It is much more informational and enlightening, and quite less entertaining, in my opinion.

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Me Before You By- Jojo Moyes

25# Book Review– ★★★★☆

Me Before You

By-

Jojo Moyes

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*Slowly wipes tears from my eyes. Proceeds to write the book review*

So y’all probably know about the basic plot of the book, since the movie is coming out in a couple of days. But for those of you who live under a rock, here’s the basic story-line:

“I told him a story of two people. Two people who shouldn’t have met, and who didn’t like each other much when they did, but who found they were the only two people in the world who could possibly have understood each other.”

Twenty six year old Louisa Clark has lead a simple, stable life. She has a job at the local café, a gorgeous boyfriend who she has been with for seven years, and a messy hyperactive family who love her to bits. She lives in a small, basic town wherein nothing ever happens. She can’t see beyond this little bubble she has built around herself, can’t see past the horizon And she doesn’t care, she loves it.

“You know, you can only actually help someone who wants to be helped.” 

Thirty Five year old Will Traynor lost everything the day he had that accident with the motorcycle, damaging his spine and leaving him paralyzed from the chest below, with only little sensation in his hands.  He hates the life he lives now. In fact, he barely lives. A man who used to love everything that involved the usage of his limbs, can’t use them anymore. He hates being trapped in a wheel chair. He’s lost the desire to live.

Then Lou aka Louisa loses her job, that too in the middle of recession, and the stable life she’d been wrapped up in, shatters in front of her eyes. Suddenly the future she’d been so easily predicting, vanishes before her eyes and she doesn’t know what to do anymore.

So she takes up a job—an unusual one. She has to be Will’s care taker. The pay is great, and the hours are decent, even though Will is a pain in the arse, and definitely not the most pleasant person to be around. He thinks she is dumb, and an unwanted intruder. He just wants to be left alone.

“I needed to tell him, silently, that things might change, grow, or fail, but that life did go on. That we were all part of some great cycle, some pattern that it was only God’s purpose to understand.” 

“You only get one life. It’s actually your duty to live it as fully as possible.” 

But when they give each other a chance, everything changes.

“I know this isn’t a conventional love story. I know there are all sorts of reasons I shouldn’t even be saying what I am. But I love you. I do.

If only their time together didn’t have an expiration date…

“I had a hundred and seventeen days in which to convince Will Traynor that he had a reason to live.” 

*sigh* another novel that reminded me of ‘The Fault in Our Stars’. I enjoyed the characters. Despite being a sad romance novel that’s supposed to make you cry, the characters were quite likeable. They weren’t depressed and grouchy all the time, so that was great. The story was mildly amusing, and the characters weren’t two dimensional. I could relate to Louisa Clark every now and then. It was of course, hard to relate to Will, if you’re not going through something as extreme as him. But that doesn’t mean it was difficult to understand his feelings, his motives and actions and his situation. That’s one of the remarkable things about this novel. I don’t want to give a spoiler or anything, but the way the author wrote this book…she made it easier for us as readers to accept and understand Will’s choices. Which is a big feat in itself.

The supporting characters were realistic and weren’t just there for the sake of being there. They all had some role to play.

Despite being a romance, I found the book to be slightly plot centric, and not as emotion-centric, for some reasons. I believe the romance could have been enhanced in some parts, but it wasn’t. Emotions were expressed more through actions, instead of dialogues and feelings. And the story didn’t focus as much on the development of the relationship between two people, as it did on the other major events. The character-relation dynamics were quite stagnant in some parts which makes me feel that way.

As for the writing style, it wasn’t anything exceptional. It was simple enough, and likeable, slightly entertaining, and overall fine.

If anyone of y’all is emotional af (because god knows I’m not) and wants to get a decent cry, you should go read this book. It’s sweet and sad, and it plays in your head like a movie. (Tip: watch the trailer before you read the book, it helps) All you fans of John Green and Nicholas Sparks will enjoy this book.

Happy Reading! x

November 9 By- Colleen Hoover

21# Book Review– ★★★★☆ (4.5 Stars)

November 9

By-

Colleen Hoover

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So my best friend suggested me to read this book, and honestly, I had been a little sceptical. You can’t be too wary of all those NA Romance Novels out there that spout out the same crap book after book. So yes, I’d been a little hesitant. But thankfully, this book didn’t turn out to be a waste of time. Quite the opposite actually, it was a really entertaining read. It reminded me why writers are such dangerous species and how they can stomp on your heart and play with your feelings using just a bunch of words. What even…

I’d shed a couple of tears by the time I finished reading this book. Surprisingly, the tears were tears of happiness. So surprising, right? Like I’m sure we’ve all come across books that make us bawl our eyes out and clog our noses and just make us realize how sad life can really be. But this, oh this was entirely different. This made me laugh out loud, and wipe my tears as I tried to regain the control of my emotions. If you want to feel content and happy and realize how beautiful love can really be, you definitely need to read this book. It reminds you that sometimes very ordinary people can experience extra-ordinary love. It made me want to fall in love with someone right now and experience all those intense beautiful things. But it also inspired me enough to wait for that kind of love to come along, to settle for nothing less than extra-ordinary.

“I’ve never loved someone I hate so much, and I’ve never hated someone I love so much.”

Ever since the terrible fire that burnt away 30% of her body when she was sixteen, and on her way to becoming a successful actress, Fallon has been insecure. A girl who once loved her appearance and was confident, now hides behind her curtain of hair and clothes that hide her scars. Then on the fateful day of November 9th, she stumbles across Benton Kessler.

“She’s not the kind of girl you choose your battles for. She’s the kind of girl you fight to the death for.”

When Benton Kessler, the so-called writer in the making,  hears Fallon’s asshole-ish father making his insecure daughter feel even more insecure and unworthy, he can’t control himself. So before he can stop himself, he barges in on their conversation, pretending to be Fallon’s “boyfriend”.

“If she’s not careful, I might just fall in love with her. Tonight.”

What starts as a thirty minute fake relationship, extends throughout the day with both of them spending the whole of November 9 together. There’s this undeniable instant connection that is impossible to ignore, and before the day has ended Ben gets to observe the deeply destroyed parts of her soul, her low self esteem and all the insecurities attached with it. But he’s different. Fallon has never come across a guy like him before. Instead of flinching at the sight of her scars and shying away from them, he embraces her for who she is. For the first time in two years she feels beautiful, and wanted.

“He presses his mouth to mine and kisses me with so much emotion, I forget all the things. Everything. I forget where I am. Who I am.”

Before long the day ends, and they have to accept the fact that as much fun it had been, Fallon is moving away to New York. But this connection they had…it’s too good to be true. Too precious to let go of so easily. So they make a pact. That they’ll meet each other every year for the next five years on the same day—November 9, at the same place. Fallon also suggests him to write a book about it—to write a book about those five coming years in which they’ll meet once a year. Between that annual meeting, they’ll have no connection what-so-ever. So they block each other on every social media, and don’t exchange phone numbers. And then they wait, for a whole year.

“But the only thing that makes me sad—the biggest thing—is that I think about you every second of every day and I don’t know how to get over you.”

“Don’t,” I beg her. “Please don’t get over me.”

The idea seems harmless. What’s the worst that could happen?

“Because it’s easy to fall in love, Ben. The hard part comes when you want out.”

Actually, everything.

Okay, first thing, do you have any idea how many beautiful, heart-touching quotes this book has? A lot. Like a lot lot. (You can read them in the Quotes Section of my blog) The book has been written so beautifully. The dialogue work is splendid. It’s absolutely magical. So yes, the writing style is good, like romance novel-worthy good.

Now, about the characters. The female protagonist, Fallon; she just has this…thing about her, you know? That makes it so easy for you to step into her shoes. I don’t know about you, but as a girl, I’ve been insecure about my appearance and my body quite a lot. So, her insecurity and vulnerability is very…believable. You see a part of yourself in her. You can step into her shoes. Despite that, she’s not a cry baby or anything. She’s actually quite spunky and funny and like a really good person. So you don’t get sick of her.

Ah, and what do I say about Benton James Kessler? Reading about Ben was like inhaling a fresh breath of air and I feel so…clean, I don’t even have words to express myself. He was just so refreshing. He was not like those typical book worthy male protagonists that make you swoon but he still was book-worthy. I think that’s because he was…perfect, but in a real, more believable way. Like give me gorgeous billionaires with emotional conflicts and mad bedroom skills any day, but there’s something so…amazing about a normal guy who’s dorky but has this amazing sense of humor and this inner passion, and this humongous capacity to love someone and just be there for them. Someone who is so fucking motivational and says just the right things at the right time. But like he also has his scars and his flaws and his insecurities. And you know, someone who thinks it’s a privilege to be able to love you. You will come to love his character, I promise you.

About the plot: It might seem a little…ordinary and normal during the first eighty page sor so. You know, it might seem kinda predictable and you’ll be like ‘I don’t see anythign special about this novel. It’s…good, but not amazing.’ Give it another couple of pages and you’ll not be able to put this book down. Trust me. It had a lot of romance at the start with hints of humor. But we eventually get the drama we crave oh-so-much! This would be a perfect plot for a RomCom, you know? This really needs to be made into a movie.

Please read this book if you want to get chest pains and feel that your feelings have been manipulated by the author. But most of all, read it to make yourself feel alive and happy (and like a gooey puddle of happiness and tears)

She “loved me” in quotations

She kissed me in bold

I TRIED TO KEEP HER in all caps

She left with an ellipsis . . .

—BENTON JAMES KESSLER

Ugly Love By Colleen Hoover

13# Book Review- ★★★★☆

Ugly Love

By-

Colleen Hoover

“Ugly love becomes you. Consumes you. Makes you hate it all. Makes you realize that all the beautiful parts aren’t even worth it. Without the beautiful, you’ll never risk feeling the ugly. So you give it all up. You give it all up. You never want love again, no matter what kind it is, because no type of love will ever be worth living through the ugly love again.”

So I just finished reading this book about half an hour ago. My pillow is still wet from all that crying that the last couple of chapters brought on. Here’s the book review.
23 year old Tate just moved in with her protective elder brother Corbin in his spacey San Francisco apartment. She’d predicted a few things, like how she would have to do most of the chores and the grocery shopping. She’d probably have to do her brother’s laundry and the cooking too (even though she sucks at it)
But she hadn’t predicted falling for Miles Mikel Archer, her brother’s insanely hot neighbor slash best friend who is a pilot just like him. The moment her eyes meet his beautiful ocean blues, she knows she’s done for.
‘”You’re a jerk, and you have serious issues, and I don’t want to be a part of them anymore.”
I’m lying. I really do want to be a part of his issues. I want to immerse myself in his issues and become his issues, but I’m supposed to be this independent,headstrong girl who doesn’t cave just because she likes a guy.’
Miles hasn’t been with a girl since six years, and isn’t planning to get with anyone anytime soon. He has made up his mind–he is never going to fall in love. Never. But when his best friend’s gorgeous younger sister enters his life he knows his heart is in danger.
“But the second she opened her eyes and looked at me, I knew. She was either going to be the death of me . . . or she was going to be the one who finally brought me back to life.”
No matter how much they resist, they know they want each other. They let their bodies do the thinking this time, and they make a deal. They’ll indulge in sex, nothing more than that. There are only two rules–Tate can never ask Miles about his past, and rule no. 2 she can sure as hell never expect a future.
No relationship, not even a thought of it. Strictly sex. You know the whole no strings attached thing? Yeah that.
Well we all know how well that works out.
“His lips against mine feel like everything. Like living and dying and being reborn, all at the same time.”
“He inhales a shaky breath while looking down at my mouth. ‘You make it so hard to breathe.”
 Tate convinces herself she can handle it. She lets him use her body even if he tosses away her heart the heart he doesn’t intend to steal but end up doing anyway. She falls for the little things he does (and his mad bedroom skills) Before long, she finds herself in an ugly position–she can’t hold on because she knows there’s no future; she can’t let go because she’s already head over heels.
 “I’m not Tate when I’m near Miles. I’m liquid, and liquid doesn’t know how to be firm or stand up for itself. Liquid flows. That’s all I want to do with Miles. Flow.”
“Every time I’m with him, he fills my heart up more and more, and the more it’s filled with pieces of him, the more painful it’ll be when he rips it out of my chest as though it never belonged there in the first place”
Will Tate survive the end of this roller coaster ride? Will Miles ever move on from his past and accept Tate in her future?
“Hearts get infiltrated. Promises get broken. Rules get shattered. Love gets ugly.”
Find out in Ugly Love.
So yeah, here’s the stuff I liked about the book–
I liked the writing style written in Tate’s point of view. I liked the incredible chemistry the two main characters shared. I loved the way the author described the sexual tention, the intensity and the glorious spark in their relationship. I liked the plot. I liked the ending. I loved the last few chapters. I loved the message this book sent out.
The stuff I didn’t like:- The book was slightly illogical. Like the fact that people kept falling in love but the author never once divulged what made the characters actually fall in love. We were just told to have a little faith in the whole ‘Love at First Site’ thing and just overlook the logic and follow the story (which I was able to do without even trying) I didn’t like the chapters written in Miles’ point of view. They were very redundant, which kind of annoyed me. There was mostly just a lot of sex which kimd of gets boring after a while (but not as boring as it gets in Fifty Shades, trust me)
I just really appreciate the book for the message it gave (won’t  give a spoiler, sorry) and the crazy emotions I felt towards the end of the book. The good part is, it’s not a very long book and is definitely worth (some of) your time.
Read it and share your views in the comment!
Until Later x