Book Review: the Percy Jackson Series

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The Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan

Rating: 4/5

Pages: ~349/book, 1744 between the 5

Published: 2009

Genre: Mythology, Fiction, Young Adult

Favorite Quotes: “With great power … comes great need to take a nap. Wake me up later”

Summary: Percy Jackson and his friends Annabeth Chase and Grover must save Olympus from Kronos, while making friends along the way

Review: I thoroughly enjoyed these books, I love how Rick Riordan modernized Greek mythology in these. I do wish that he stuck more to the true personalities of the Gods and Goddesses (I will not give any specific details at that would spoil things), but all-in-all, I thought it was well written and made the mythology easier for people to understand!

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Book Review: Mindset

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Mindset by Carol S. Dweck

Rating: 1/5

Pages: 276

Published: 2006

Genre: Non-fiction, science

Favorite Quotes: “Picture your brain forming new connections as you meet the challenge and learn. Keep on going”

Summary: Carol S. Dweck introduces us to her theory that the power of mindset can influence outcome, such as success ins school, work, the arts, and sports

Review: I personally did not enjoy this book for a couple reasons. My principal was trying to sell this book as a sure fire way to succeed and that everyone has to like it, which initial made me loathe reading it, but I figured to give it a chance, I should not let a reason as petty as me not liking the person who required me to read it to stop me from reading it, so I read it with an open mind. That being said, I did not particularly enjoy it, because it gave the feel that if you have the right mindset, everything will go as you please, and every event in human history could have had the desirable outcome, should the right mindset have been had

Book Review: Ten Plays

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Ten Plays by Euripides

Rating: 4/5

Pages: 401

Published: 1936

Genre: Mythology, Classic, Play, Fiction, Drama, Tragedy

Favorite Quotes: Medea: “Hate is a bottomless cup; I will pour and pour”, “Of all creatures that can feel and think, we women are the worst treated things alive”, and “It’s human; we all put self interest first”

Summary: Collection of plays (mostly tragedies) written by Euripides, based off of famous myths and legends

Review: Very well written, the characters are not over glorified, they are very human. I especially loved Medea, and Andromache. I enjoyed Medea because she is a well written villain who you have to feel bad for. She is also an especially strong and dark woman, given the time era. I enjoyed Andromache because it is about a queen who was abducted and turned into a concubine after her husband was killed and her country lost the war. Her sons life is threatened since the father took a trip, and Andromache is strong in trying to protect her son.

Book Review: Heart of Darkness and the Secret Sharer

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Heart of Darkness and the Secret Sharer by Joseph Conrad

Rating: Overall: 4/5; Heart of Darkness: 3/5; Secret Sharer: 5/5

Pages: 155

Published: 2008

Genre: Fiction, dark, psychological

Favorite Quote: Heart of Darkness: “We live as we dream–alone…” AND “It was written I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice” Secret Sharer: “Necessity, they say, is the mother of invention, but fear, too, is not barren of ingenious suggestions”

Summary: Heart of Darkness-“A journey into darkness and horror, both literally and figuratively”, and explores the corruptibility of man, as seen through agent Kurtz. Secret Sharer– A young sea captain on his first voyage counters his double

Review: I enjoy how Conrad explored the dark side of man, and I like the Secret Sharer best out of the two because I love how the captain saw his double as himself

Book Review: Practical Shepherding

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Practical Shepherding by H.G. Clarke

Rating: 3/5

Pages: 87

Published: 1959

Genre:How-to, non-fiction

Summary:Do you want to know how to be a shepherd and take care of sheep? If the answer is yes, read it.

Review: Very concise and informative, although dry at times. However, if I ever wanted to raise sheep, I would certainly refer to this, as he takes everything step by step, provides examples, and offers photos, so it is definitely a good book for a beginning shepherd

Book Review: Secret Holocaust Diaries

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The Secret Holocaust Diaries by Nonna Bannister

Rating: 5/5

Pages: 256

Published: 2009

Genre: Historical, Memoir, Non-Fiction

Favorite quote: “we must pass the knowledge on to those who should know the true history of all the horrors. It is the only way to keep such a thing from ever being repeated again. If we keep quiet and do not speak now about what happened before, it could surely happen again”

Summary: Nonna Bannister records her life as a Russian during the Holocaust, discussing family, traditions, fear, and loss.

Review: A wonderful first hand account of the Holocaust, and the pictures, birth certificates, and other primary sources in it were an awesome inclusion. This was an interesting, getting a non-jewish perspective of the Holocaust. I very much enjoy books in the diary form, although biased, it is a great way to get a first hand account of what happened, and Nonna Bannister edited her diary later in life so it said what she wanted the world to hear

Book Review: Divine Comedy

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The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri, translated by John Ciardi

Rating 4/5 stars

Pages: 894

Published: Sometime between 1308-1320

Genre: Classic, religious, fiction

Favorite Quote: “The more a thing is perfect, the more it feels pleasure and pain” AND “The devil is not as black as he is painted”

Summary: A beast blocks Dante’s path, so Virgil leads him through Hell and most of Purgatory, where Beatrice the woman Dante loves (who is not his wife and has been dead for 10 years), leads him through the rest of Purgatory and straight through Heaven, just for him to be sent back to Earth days later, the beast no where in sight, instead of just taking another path.

Review: Beautifully written, and is certainly an interesting interpretation on what waits for us in Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory, should you believe in them. It is a difficult read, but is well worth it, especially with the version I had, not only did Ciardi summarize each Canto, but also had notes at the end so there would be no confusion while reading. However, Dante’s obsession with Beatrice is pretty creepy.