Mini-Reviews: Ring, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, A Quick Bite

173. Ring by Koji Suzuki
Publication: Vertical (April 25, 2004), Paperback, 288pp / ISBN 1932234411
Genre: Horror
Rating:
Read: August 2010
Source: Paperback Swap

Review

What can I say? You’re probably familiar with one of the movies, and so you know the basic premise. The book version is different, of course, way different than the American movie, but most the horror parts are similar enough that I was tense all throughout waiting for things to come to a head. Koji Suzuki is very good at inducing a state of tenseness in a reader, very good at creating an atmosphere and scaring the crap out of someone. The writing isn’t fantastic, more like a Stephen King sort of writing, maybe, except with more uncomplicated sentences. I had the idea that Mr Suzuki was saying things about Japanese culture that I wasn’t entirely picking up on, especially at the end with one of the characters that pretended to be something he wasn’t. I didn’t get that, and I wish I had. Maybe I need a decoder ring– I don’t know.

If you completely ignore the saying-something-about-society stuff it’s a decently scary horror book, although I think the movies are a little bit scarier because you actually SEE the scary stuff– Mr Suzuki’s descriptions weren’t enough to evoke the same reaction as the movie’s visuals had.

174. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
Publication: Penguin Classics (December 31, 2002), Paperback, 312pp / ISBN 0141181222
Genre: Fiction
Rating:
Read: August 2010
Source: Library

Review

I had to read this for one of my classes this semester– technically we aren’t reading it until November, I think, but I wanted to get a headstart– and so I had to read it without the expertise my prof no doubt has about the 1960s in America and the books written therein. However, I’m slightly familiar with insane asylums in the 1960s from books like Girl, Interrupted, and of course I know a bit about the 1960s in a general history sort of way. Anyway, I was completely surprised by this book. I was expecting it to be something like Woman On the Edge of Time only without the time-travel stuff, but it’s really not. It’s much better, and much MORE than just an asylum in the 1960s, and by the time I got the end I felt like I had just run a marathon.

175. A Quick Bite by Lynsay Sands
Publication: Avon (October 25, 2005), Paperback, 384pp / ISBN 0060773758
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Rating:
Read: August 2010
Source: Paperback Swap

Review

I don’t know why I do this to myself. I’ve hated almost ALL paranormal romances I’ve read, especially the ones with vampires, and I don’t know why I thought this one would be different. It’s got ALL the things I hate about romances, especially paranormal ones: soulmates, falling in love after THREE DAYS and basically getting married, nice vampires that are really just like humans with all sorts of benefits and no downsides, and stupid, stupid names. Add on to that busybody families on both sides, a heroine who has NO FLAWS (or at least none that can’t be fixed) as well as no personality, and Mr. Perfect Hero Who Does No Wrong, and I pretty much hated this book. I’m just not into the stuff I listed, though I know lots of other people are.

I will say it wasn’t completely hopeless. The heroine is a vampire for once, when usually I think it tends to be a male vampire wooing a human female. I think Ms Sands was trying to play with certain vampire lore aspects, like how Lissianna has a fear of blood (although she’s still able to drink it as long as she doesn’t see it). And the writing was very engaging, though I hated the plot.

The rest of the series has different characters starring, so I was thinking of reading the next book, because it wouldn’t have the Boringly Perfect Couple in it, but…I don’t know. I almost don’t want to chance it again.

I guess I’m just not a paranormal romance sort of person. Take this review with a grain of salt.

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