Monday, April 30, 2018

Bookish Banter: Classics, Yay or Nay?

A little Bookish Banter to get us through.  Bookish Banter is a little bit of banter about our bookish thoughts as we have a friendly discussion over a nice cup of tea. 

Classics, yay or nay?

Let's start by talking about what makes a classic, a classic. Now everyone considers classics differently. But according to wiki...

A classic is a book accepted as being exemplary or noteworthy, for example through an imprimatur such as being listed in a list of great books, or through a reader's personal opinion. ... The terms "classic book" and "Western canon" are closely related concepts, but they are not necessarily synonymous.


Really it depends on the book. I have read some really great classics, then I've read some really bad classics.

I'm going to mostly go with nay. I've read more bad and boring classics than interesting ones...

Like said up there, everyone considers classics something different. Some people even consider Harry Potter to be a classic. I do not. At all.

I think a classic is anything written in the early 1900s or earlier. It's something that no matter how old it is, it's still being read in school. It's still being talked about. 

Some of my favorite classics are...

Animal FarmLittle Women (Little Women, #1)FrankensteinFahrenheit 451The OutsidersSherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories, Volume IAlice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass

And some of the worst classics in my opinion... Though I haven't read too many classics.

The Adventures of Huckleberry FinnThe Count of Monte CristoDon QuixoteEmma

So all in all, I'm gonna have to say nay to classics.


I don't find many classics I like. I haven't read too many but I think out of the ones I have read I like less than I don't like. I honestly don't understand the hype around most classics. I understand that some people like them, and I respect those that do. I think it takes a much more mature brain than mine to enjoy them at the level they are to be enjoyed. I mainly get bored with them.

I find classics to lack character development or find them really just slow and hollow feeling. Or I just don't get why the story is so interesting? Like The Great Gatsby. I was confused why this story was good. I thought it kind of dumb really. I didn't get it at all.  I think for the time they were written they were grand and people got more out of them than I do today. I think they are written for things that were important at the time they were written.

Don't get me wrong, I think classics are very important and I am so happy we have these books too look on and see how people lived or wrote during their time. I also think some of the content is still very important to this day. Especially books like Fahrenheit 451- which I love!

I just don't enjoy them. They are dry to me like I said empty. I am not much of a literature person either. I like heart pounding, page turning, gut-wrenching books. Those are hard to find in classics.

Another problem I find with classics is the way they are written, the language in which they are written. I can understand them sure but I just feel out of place with they way they speak, especially in the much older classics, like Swiss Family Robinson... which I enjoyed but didn't love.

I am just not made for classics, but I know there are some great ones out there and little by little I will keep reading to find those golden treasures that are hidden among the sea of classics.

Here are a few I loved so very much...

FrankensteinThe OutsidersFahrenheit 451And Then There Were NoneTo Kill a Mockingbird

These not so much... 

Oliver TwistThe Great GatsbyGulliver's TravelsWe Have Always Lived in the CastlePippi LongstockingOf Mice and Men

There are still many more I want to read. I will keep reading and see which ones I like. I don't go to classics first, but I won't absolutely say no to them either. There are some good ones and I don't want to miss those. 

So what do you think of classics?

Review: A Thousand Eyes by Junior Burke

A Thousand EyesTitle:  A Thousand Eyes
Author:  Junior Burke 
Publisher: Cosmic Egg Books
Publishing Date:  May 25th, 2018
Pages: 240
Genre: Adult Horror
Series:  Stand Alone
Source:  ARC 
Todd Wendt, employed by a multinational corporation, is recovering from the tragic death of his wife and is at a loss as to what direction his life could possibly take. When he is sent to a small mountain town in Colorado he becomes aware of a series of vicious animal attacks on the local population, Over time, Todd realizes the attacks are not random but targeted at the company that brought him there, as well a himself. His decision to confront this situation ultimately transforms, not only Todd, but the entire community.

I came across this ARC and thought well that cover is cool, oh and the story sounds very interesting. Kind of horror and sci-fi mix. I am all over this book. I was more than happy to read this book. I am torn with this book. I just didn't care it. I feel there were some issues and I feel it could have been executed so much better. I can say for sure it was horrific though. 
There is a small town with crazy animal attacks. I mean crazy out of the ordinary animal attacks. People are dying. No one knows why the animals are going crazy. It is all mass confusion until one man and one detective figures out it's all people who had something to do with a pretty rotten company doing bad things to the environment.

I like the sound of this book, I just couldn't get into the story. There are a few reasons why. This will be short and maybe not so sweet. So I will just list my issues out. 

Too many characters to keep up with. I was confused for a majority of the book whenever the point of view changed. I have a hard time with multiple pov's when it's in the third person. I think there should have been maybe some kind of indication when a new pov started. Not just the pov confusion bothered me about the characters though. Ther was just also way too many characters to keep up with. I was also confused on who was who and I just couldn't connect to any of them. I really didn't care who died and who lived. 

The storyline. I liked the idea but really it felt too much like the book series Zoo. Too many things were the same for me to really get into this book. I felt it was just a do-over. I also felt it was too rushed. Things just didn't fit into place for me and didn't flow or feel natural to me. 

I finished the book. I wanted to see where the story would take me and I kept waiting for something big to happen. Then the end happened and I was like really that's it. It was very anti-climatic. 

The only thing I really liked it that the bad guys got what was coming to them. 

Just couldn't enjoy it. 

Junior Burke is a novelist, dramatist and songwriter. In 2004, he founded the ezine not enough night which for a decade published work by some of the most compelling writers of today. His novel Something Gorgeous appeared in 2005. This work of speculative fiction explored the historical background of the era that spawned The Great Gatsby and was lauded for its invention by the UK's Historical Novels Review.

From 2005 to 2010, Burke served as Chair of Naropa University's Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics and was a literary source for such publications as Le Monde and The London Observer when they presented features on the 50th anniversary of Kerouac’s On the Road. Burke was one of the chief organizers of the first-of-its-kind Poetic Film Symposium held in Boulder in June, 2011, a collaboration between Naropa University and the University of Colorado. His account of the event, "Notice What You Notice" appeared in Bomb Magazine.

In 2013, he co-authored One October Midnight, a musical theatre work, contributing book and lyrics. The musical, based on stories by Edgar Allan Poe, received its world premier at the Finger Lakes Musical Theatre Festival in Hamilton, New York. This year, he will release Spot of Time, a song cycle inspired by classic works by such writers as W.B. Yeats, Arthur Rimbaud and Gertrude Stein.

Review: I'll be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara

I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State KillerTitle: I'll be Gone in the Dark
Author: Michelle McNamara
Publisher: Harper
Publishing Date: February 27th, 2018
Pages: 352
Audio Length: 9 Hours and 45 Minutes
Genre: Non-Fiction True Crime
Series: Stand Alone
Source: Audio

Introduction by Gillian Flynn
Afterword by Patton Oswalt
A masterful true crime account of the Golden State Killer—the elusive serial rapist turned murderer who terrorized California for over a decade—from Michelle McNamara, the gifted journalist who died tragically while investigating the case.
"You’ll be silent forever, and I’ll be gone in the dark."
For more than ten years, a mysterious and violent predator committed fifty sexual assaults in Northern California before moving south, where he perpetrated ten sadistic murders. Then he disappeared, eluding capture by multiple police forces and some of the best detectives in the area.
Three decades later, Michelle McNamara, a true crime journalist who created the popular website, was determined to find the violent psychopath she called "the Golden State Killer." Michelle pored over police reports, interviewed victims, and embedded herself in the online communities that were as obsessed with the case as she was.
At the time of the crimes, the Golden State Killer was between the ages of eighteen and thirty, Caucasian, and athletic—capable of vaulting tall fences. He always wore a mask. After choosing a victim—he favored suburban couples—he often entered their home when no one was there, studying family pictures, mastering the layout. He attacked while they slept, using a flashlight to awaken and blind them. Though they could not recognize him, his victims recalled his voice: a guttural whisper through clenched teeth, abrupt and threatening.
I’ll Be Gone in the Dark—the masterpiece McNamara was writing at the time of her sudden death—offers an atmospheric snapshot of a moment in American history and a chilling account of a criminal mastermind and the wreckage he left behind. It is also a portrait of a woman’s obsession and her unflagging pursuit of the truth. Framed by an introduction by Gillian Flynn and an afterword by her husband, Patton Oswalt, the book was completed by Michelle’s lead researcher and a close colleague. Utterly original and compelling, it is destined to become a true crime classic—and may at last unmask the Golden State Killer.
What made me pick this book up: 
I needed to find a non fiction book with a building on the front. And this one said it was about a killer. 

What did I like about the cover: 
It's definitely creepy and dark. I think it fits the book well.

What made me read this book: 
Like I said, I needed a non fiction book with a building on the cover, and this one sounded really awesome. I have a thing for serial killers.

What did I like the most:
I really liked listening to the murders (in a totally normal, sane, not creepy way) But also the clues that the author found and the way she found it was really interesting.

I found myself completely into this book, staring off into space, completely wrapped up in it.

I don't really have much to say about this book, except it really was interesting. I wanted to do a review so more people could find it.  

What didn't I like: 
Well, the way it's written it goes back and forth in time. So the stories of the murders and how she found what she did, she kept bouncing back and forth between them and it just got really confusing.

Also she died before she could finish it. And that's sad.

Would I read the rest of the series/more from this author?
Sure... if there was more.

Really interesting to read about the murders and the killer. I enjoyed it.

“But then you hear a scream and you decide it’s some teenagers playing around. A young man jumping a fence is taking a shortcut. The gunshot at three a.m. is a firecracker or a car backfiring. You sit up in bed for a startled moment. Awaiting you is the cold, hard floor and a conversation that may lead nowhere; you collapse onto your warm pillow, and turn back to sleep. Sirens wake you later.” 
― Michelle McNamaraI'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer

Hunting A Psychopath: The East Area Rapist / Original Night Stalker InvestigationWhoever Fights Monsters: My Twenty Years Tracking Serial Killers for the FBICase Files of the East Area Rapist / Golden State Killer

Michelle McNamara was a screenwriter, journalist and true crime writer. She was the founder of the website True Crime Diary. The site covers lesser-known crimes and cold cases. In 2005, she married comedian Patton Oswalt. They had one daughter together, born in 2009.

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