nedeľa, 24. apríla 2016

DEWEY’S 24-HOUR READ-A-THON: SPRING EDITION 2016 - WRAP-UP (EN)

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During the spring 2016 edition of the Dewey's 24-hour Read-a-thon I finally managed to read 5 books of my former TBR list of 7. Though this year it was an extraordinary combination of academic literature on European integration, classics, Nobel Prize fiction and probably the best YA fantasy ever. So quite a pick ;)

  1. Dinan, Desmond: Ever Closer Union. Written by one of my favourite analysts of the European integration, the book actually has two bookmarks placed inside. One marking my progress from the beginning of the book and the second one, my progress through chapters on foreign aspects of European integration. During Read-a-thon I managed to finish the chapter on Internal and External Security. (pages read 10)
  2. Leskov, Nikolay: Steel Flea. Wonderful short tale about Russian nature, praising human inventiveness and craftsmanship more than perfection. (pages read 64 - the entire book)
  3. Munro, Alice: The Love of a Good Woman. I've been planning to read a book by Munro, the 2015 Nobel Prize winner for quite a time and now I read the first short story in Slovak translation. Peculiar writing style... I am curious about the next couple of short stories. (pages read 89)
  4. Howorth, Jolyon: Security and Defence Policy in the European Union. Chapters of the first edition of this book were also part of a course on European foreign and defence policies during my university studies of Political Science. (pages read 21)
  5. Rowling, J.K.: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Fourth book of the famous series, I've been intending to start to read for last few months, though French and European integration took the majority of my spare time. And after all those academic political science literature it was really funny to read about Percy Weasley working at the Department of International Magical Co-operation of the Ministry of Magic, preparing a report to standardise cauldron thickness. Thumbs-up, Mrs Rowling :) (pages read 55)
Total number of pages read during Read-a-thon: 239
Hours slept: 3:45

I love Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-thon. It is such a great excuse to make time to read all the books you want :) (and eat sweets in the midnight ;)
So my thanks goes to the whole Read-a-thon team for inventing, organising and sustaining this wonderful, international event for all bookworms like me :)



sobota, 23. apríla 2016

DEWEY’S 24-HOUR READ-A-THON: SPRING EDITION 2016 (EN)

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Since I've been pretty busy for the last few days and hours, here finally comes my last minute blog post of my TBR list for this year's spring edition of the Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-thon.


14:00 - I grabbed Desmond Dinan's Ever Closer Union and got absorbed by building of foreign policy of the EU = my favourite field of study.

16:12 - Just finished the chapter on Internal and External Security of Ever Closer Union by Desmond Dinan. Time for a short break.

17:14 - publishing photos of my brand new additional bookcase. I love white bookcase, it compliments all beautiful books so much.






17:45 - social media updated. Takes so long. Continuing with The Steel Flea by Nikolay Leskov.

20:27 - just finished The Steel Flea by Nikolay Leskov. It is a wonderful short tale about Russian nature praising human inventiveness and craftsmanship more than perfection. I should definitely purchase Leskov's book The Enchanted Wanderer and Other Stories.

21:35 - starting The Love of a Good Woman by Alice Munro. I had to add Slovak translation on Goodreads first. I enjoy being virtual librarian :)

0:30 - page 67 of The Love of a Good Woman and time for Lindt chocolate... Yum :)

1:20 - just finished the first short story of The Love of a Good Woman by Alice Munro. I've been planning to read a book by Munro, the 2015 Nobel Prize winner for quite a time and now I read the first short story in Slovak translation. Peculiar writing style... I am curious about the next couple of short stories.
Though, now it seems like a perfect time for some academic literature ;)

3:45 - went to take a short nap.

7:30 - postponing my alarm clock until deciding that 7:30 am is the right time for breakfast and another few pages of Jolyon Howorth, to be able to eventually grab Harry Potter! :)

10:46 - done with Howorth and academic literature for now and starting Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.


14:00 - ended Read-a-thon on page 56 of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I love Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-thon. It is such a great excuse to make time to read all the books you want :)




štvrtok, 7. apríla 2016

GLOBAL BLOG TOUR - JULIE BUXBAUM: TELL ME THREE THINGS

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Published by Delacorte Press on April 5, 2016. ISBN: 9780399552939


(please scroll down for English text ;)

Keď som sa rozhodla zúčastniť sa Tell Me Three Things Global Blog Tour a podieľať sa na recenzovaný, nevedela som čo presne mám očakávať. Dostať pre napísanie recenzie kópiu knihy pred jej oficiálnym vydaním, bolo mojim snom už keď som začínala tento blog. Prebehla som si stručný opis deja na Goodreads a mala som pocit, že v knihe sa autorka zaoberá ťažkými životnými otázkami, ktoré ma priťahujú najviac. Čo je čiastočne pravda. Faktom, ktorý som pri rozhodnutí recenzovať túto knihu osobne trocha podcenila je, že ide o knihu pre dospievajúcu mládež (young adult - YA). Niekoľko kníh z tohto žánru som prečítala nielen v období svojho dospievania, ale aj iba pár mesiacov dozadu a mnohé sa mi mimoriadne páčili. Preto som nevidela dôvod, prečo by som to nemohla skúsiť aj s touto knihou, navyše obohatenou o záhadu, ktorá je jednou z hlavných dejových línii. A práve vďaka tejto dejovej línii, som hneď na prvých stranách objavila aj opis, ktorý je mne osobne hlboko vlastný.

Slovenský preklad úryvku:
"Vo Vennovom diagrame môjho života sa moja pomyselná a skutočná osobnosť nikdy nespojili. Avšak prostredníctvom e-mailu a správ mám niekoľko okamihov navyše, ktoré potrebujem na to, aby som bola lepšou, upravenou verziou seba samej. Aby som bola tým dievčaťom, ktoré je v tom úžasnom prieniku."

Hlavnou postavou knihy je 16-ročná Jessie Holmesová, ktorej mama podľahla rakovine. Po dvoch rokoch sa jej otec oženil opäť a presťahovali sa z Chicaga, kde Jessie prežila celé svoje detstvo, do honosnej vily otcovej novej manželky v Los Angeles. Znie to ako začiatok rozprávky, nie však pre Jessie, ktorá musela opustiť rodné mesto, najlepšiu priateľku Scarlet, zvyknúť si nielen na nové prostredie, školu a spolužiakov, ale aj na nevlastnú matku a brata, no predovšetkým na neprítomnosť mamy a to práve v tých najťažších chvíľach jej dospievania.

Slovenský preklad úryvku:
"Ideálne dni sú pre ľudí s malými, uskutočniteľnými snami. Alebo možno pre nás všetkých existujú len pri spätnom pohľade; len teraz sú ideálne, pretože obsahujú niečo neodvolateľne a nenapraviteľne stratené."

A v tomto momente, na novom mieste, plnom neistoty a cudzích ľudí, dostáva Jessie, akoby zázrakom, virtuálneho priateľa, chlapca z novej školy v Los Angeles, ktorý jej krátko po príchode napíše e-mail pod pseudonymom Somebody Nobody (Niekto Nikto) alebo SN. A tak Jessie ani netuší o koho ide. SN sa postupne stáva jej oporou a dôverným priateľom, ktorý jej rozumie. Na rozlúštenie záhady kto je SN, však autorka necháva čitateľa čakať až do posledných strán.



Skutočnosť, že ide o YA román, mi však trocha spôsobovala problém úplne sa vžiť do pocitov a konania Jessie, ktorá sa mi zároveň miestami zdala ako tínedžerka, a miestami ako dospelá žena. A to druhé najmä v častiach kde Jessie uvažuje a kde autorka vkladá svoje vlastné myšlienky. Je ale pravdou, že strata tak blízkeho človeka, akou je matka, o ktorú prišla aj samotná Julie Buxbaum, prinúti aj veľmi mladého človeka pozerať sa na svet trocha inak a predčasne dospieť. Možno aj preto mi román nebol úplne cudzí a miestami dokázala Jessie dokonale vstúpiť aj do môjho vlastného vnímania a uvažovania.

Slovenský preklad úryvku:
"Určité skutočnosti robia všetko ostatné nepodstatným."

Čo mi ale v príbehu trocha chýbalo, bol väčší spád a gradácia. V príbehu sa síce deje niekoľko vecí, no zápletky sa riešia akosi rýchlo a priamočiaro. V deji mi chýbala trocha dramatickejšia a komplikovanejšia zápletka. Na druhej strane autorka v príbehu opisuje situácie, v ktorých sa dievča v Jessienom veku a okolnostiach môže veľmi ľahko nájsť a identifikovať sa s nimi. Čo je jedna z najväčších predností tejto knihy. Vzhľadom na to, že ide o prvý YA román z pera Julie Buxbaum, musím uznať, že sa s ním popasovala výborne.

A na záver recenzie pripájam ešte jednu myšlienku z knihy, ktorou autorka dokonale vystihla aj moje vlastné pocity.

Slovenský preklad úryvku:
"Možno domov nemusí byť miesto."

Nie, to naozaj nemusí, pretože ani pre mňa nie je domov miesto. Domov je pocit.



English

When I decided to take part in the Tell Me Three Things blog tour and apply for the review, I didn't know what to expect. To receive an ARC for a review has been my dream ever since I started this blog. I ran through the short description on Goodreads and the book seemed to deal with though questions I like the most. Which is partially true. Though, when I decided to apply for the review, I somehow underestimated the fact that it's an YA book. I've already read several YA books and not only in my teenage times but only few months ago and I really liked many of them. So I didn't see any reason why I should not give this one a try. The more it comprised a mystery, which forms one of the central themes of the book. And thanks to this theme, on the very first pages I've discovered a description, which also provides one of the deepest characteristics of my own personality.

"In the Venn diagram of my life, my imagined personality and my real personality have never converged. Over email and text, though, I am given those few additional beats I need to be better, edited version of myself. To be that girl in the glorious intersection."

The main character of the book is 16-years old Jessie Holmes whose mother died of cancer. After two years her father married again and so they moved from Chicago, where Jessie spent her whole childhood, to an opulent mansion of her stepmother in Los Angeles. It sounds like a beginning of a fairytale but not for Jessie, who had to leave behind her hometown, her best friend Scarlet, get used not only to the new place, school and classmates but also to her stepmother and stepbrother, but mainly to absence of her mother during the hardest times of her adolescence.

"Perfect days are for people with small, realizable dreams. Or maybe for all of us, they just happen in retrospect; they're only now perfect because they contain something irrevocably and irretrievably lost."

And in this moment, in a new place full of uncertainties and strange people, Jessie is given, as if by a miracle, a virtual friend, a guy from her new school in Los Angeles, who shortly after her arrival, sends her an e-mail under the pseudonym Somebody Nobody or SN. So that Jessie has no idea who is it. SN gradually becomes her moral support and confidant who understands her. The author lets readers wait until the very last page in order to unveil the mystery of who SN really is.

The fact that this is a YA book made it a bit harder for me to put myself into Jessie's feelings and acting, who sometimes appeared to me as a teenage girl and the other times as a mature woman. And the later mainly in those parts where Jessie reflects and where author puts in her own thoughts. However, the truth is that loss of such a close person as mother, Julie Buxbaum herself lost her mother too, makes even very young person to see the world from a different perspective and grow up prematurely. Maybe that's also why the novel was not completely strange to me and sometimes Jessie made it perfectly to my own perception and thoughts.

"Certain facts tend to render everything else irrelevant."

But what I was missing a bit was greater momentum and gradation. Though several things happen in the story, plots are solved too fast and straightforwardly. I missed slightly more dramatic and more complicated plot. On the other hand the author portrays situations with which a girl of Jessie's age and in her circumstances can easily find herself and identify with them. Which is one of the largest strengths of this book. Forasmuch as this is the first YA novel by Julie Buxbaum I have to admit that she managed excellently.

And I would like to close my review with another thought from the book, by which author perfectly described also my own feelings.

"Maybe home doesn't have to be a place."
No, it really doesn't have to be a place, because for me too home isn't a place. It is a feeling.



Moje hodnotenie / My rating:




Other blogs participating in the Tell Me Three Things Global Blog Tour

05/04/2016 - www.marjoleinbookblog.blogspot.com
06/04/2016 - The Nocturnal Library
08/04/2016 - http://www.oopsireadabookagain.com/
09/04/2016 - beatricelearnstoread.wordpress.com
10/04/2016 - The Lifelong Bookworm
11/04/2016 - Musings of the Bookaholic Fairies
12/04/2016 - Home of a Book Lover
13/04/2016 - https://jasminepearlreads.wordpress.com
14/04/2016 - BIBLIOPHILE SOPRANO
15/04/2016 - When Books Defy Gravity
16/04/2016 - Amaterasu Reads
17/04/2016 - Defiantly Deviant
18/04/2016 - http://staybookish.net/
19/04/2016 - The Soul Sisters
20/04/2016 - tinesreviews.wordpress.com
21/04/2016 - https://bookbloggingwithricah.wordpress.com/
22/04/2016 - http://thebookaholicblurbs.blogspot.com/
23/04/2016 - Mr. Book Wonder
24/04/2016 - http://celestialpages.blogspot.com/
25/04/2016 - https://bookwormaniac.wordpress.com/